MINK (HMCo. #733)
We've completed a "museum-quality" restoration of MINK, the 32’ 1914 Herreshoff, and we continue to maintain her each year. MINK was HMCo's project #733, the first of what started life as the "733 class" and eventually became known as the Buzzards Bay 25. In our opinion, she represents one of Nathanael G. Herreshoff’s best designs and also one of the Herreshoff Manufacturing Company’s best products. Five boats were built for the Beverly Yacht Club (Marion, MA) in 1914; three are still sailing, and a fourth, ARIA (ex-WHITECAP), is on display at the Herreshoff Marine Museum. Over the years, MP&G has done extensive work to all four of the extant boats.
MINK’s owner requested that we restore her to “as-built” condition, “warts and all,” rather than using standard MP&G methods and techniques designed to increase what we refer to as the boat’s “sailing life.” We adopted a museum approach: emphasize careful disassembly, retain original materials and factory details (including flaws), and adhere to strict Herreshoff building practices.
MINK competed in her Centennial Regatta (2014) at the Herreshoff Marine Museum. The boat was re-rigged to the original specifications: galvanized wire sweated into cast bronze turnbuckles, manila and cotton running rigging, and replica cotton sails. She is gradually being outfitted with all the equipment that would have been provided by HMCo, which includes an original 25 lb. anchor with manila rode, replica cork life jackets, and a replica HMCo. hand bilge pump. MINK sails out of Noank, CT and competes regularly in classic racing events.
MARIBEE (HMCo. #731)
Another fun project was rebuilding MARIBEE, a Buzzards Bay 15 built in 1914. Maribee is a Buzzards Bay 15 built in 1914 and raced in the E-Class at the Beverly Yacht Club in Marion, MA. Only two hull numbers removed from MINK, Maribee was rebuilt by MP&G in 2015 for the same family that owns MINK (and in much the same manner). When she arrived at our shop, Maribee was in near-original condition (including rig and hardware) except for a plank keel and trunk that had been replaced by Ballentine’s Boat Shop at some point. We took care to retain the original planking and decking, as well as her well worn and delicate coamings and trim. Maribee now sails out of Noank, CT.
LITTLE GULL (HMCo. #389)
LITTLE GULL II was designed by William Hand Jr. and built by HMCo. in 1929 as an express cruiser. Featuring an atypical hard chine and changing dead rise hull section terminating in a flat run, LGII (as the MP&G team refers to the boat) was powered by two Hall Scott engines and capable of speeds in excess of 20 kts. At 42'6" LOA with a 10'10" beam and 3’ draft, the boat was designed to fit inside an existing boathouse on the Fishers Island estate of Irving Bonbright. LGII was used as a family commuter and for day fishing, and also served in the coastal picket fleet in WWII.
The shop has been tasked with restoring LGII in the same manner as MINK. The replication of engine and mechanical systems will take the place of rigging and sails. LGII will be fit with two Hall Scott Invader engines of 275 hp., running bronze shafts in the original hull casting fitted with bronze shaft bearings. Replica riveted and soldered copper tanks for gas and water are being fabricated, and replica wiring harnesses are planned.
LGII retains her original interior, pilot house, and hardware, as well as nearly all of her topside planking, transom, and deckbeams. When completed, LGII will run out of Mystic and Noank.
Every year, MP&G commissions the “New York Thirty” AMORITA and the Fife-designed Six-Meter CLARITY.
MP&G always keeps an eye out for potential restoration candidates in case we can match clients with boats. On-site we have a partially restored Herreshoff 1931 Fishers Island 23. This boat is privately owned but would make an excellent daysailer and might be available to the right person.