The Charles W. Morgan is the last of an American whaling fleet that numbered more than 2,700 vessels. Built and launched in 1841, the Morgan is now America’s oldest commercial ship still afloat – only the USS Constitution is older. Its historic Homecoming to New Bedford will be nothing short of spectacular with nine days of concerts, programs, regattas, whaleboat races and parades, a whaling history symposium, public ceremonies and much more!

Over an 80-year whaling career, the Morgan embarked on 37 voyages between 1841 and 1921, most lasting three years or more. Built for durability, not speed, she roamed every corner of the globe in her pursuit of whales. She is known as a “lucky ship,” having successfully navigated crushing Arctic ice, hungry cannibals, countless storms, Cape Horn roundings and, after she finished her whaling career, even the Hurricane of 1938. Find out about more about the history, restoration and preservation of the Charles W. Morgan.

Visit The New Bedford Whaling Museum for more information on whaling history as well as treasured Charles W. Morgan images and resources.



The Charles W. Morgan will dock at State Pier and will open to the public June 28, 1- 5pm, and June 29 – July 6, from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Last visitor boarding of the Morgan is at 4:30. Suggested admission: $5.00

June 28, Saturday
9:00 a.m. Mystic Seaport Dockside Exhibition opens
10:00 a.m. Official New Bedford Homecoming Ceremony, followed by the opening of the Charles W. Morgan to visitors
6:30 p.m. Evening Gala at State Pier (sold out)

June 29, Sunday
10 a.m. Ecumenical Service at Seamen’s Bethel
12:30 p.m. Boat Parade in New Bedford Harbor

June 30 – July 3:
Summer Camp for New Bedford Students
9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Whaling History Symposium

July 5:
10:30 a.m. Whaleboat Skills Competition
New Bedford Folk Festival
42nd Cape Verdean Recognition Parade and Carnival
1:30pm The Independence Day Whaleboat Race
9 p.m. Fireworks and 4th of July Celebration
Please note that there will be no access to State Pier during the fireworks.

July 6:
11:30 a.m. Whaleboat Sailing Regatta
New Bedford Folk Festival
4 p.m. Official Closing Ceremony and Bon Voyage Party

All dates are subject to change due to inclement weather or other unexpected situations.
Click here for a complete schedule of the 38th Voyage of the Charles W. Morgan including stops in Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts.


Schooner Ernestina
will be open 11 am-3 pm  daily, Sunday, June 29, through Sunday, July 6.
National Historic Landmark and gift of the Republic of Cape Verde, Schooner Ernestina sailed as a Grand Banks fishing schooner, far-north Arctic explorer and trans-Atlantic Cape Verdean packet.

Board a working commercial fishing boat!
From Saturday, June 28 to Sunday, July 6 an offshore commercial fishing vessel and an offshore scallop vessel will be open for tours from 10 am to 3 pm at Pier 3 which is adjacent to the State Pier.  This is a rare chance to board a working commercial boat and learn about the fishing industry in American’s No. 1 fishing port.  This opportunity is provided through generous contributions by Eastern Fisheries and Carlos Rafael of New Bedford.

Live Music at Custom House Square
July 1 – July 3
Head to the Historic Downtown New Bedford. Kick up your feet and relax listening to live music playing at the Custom House Square!
Tuesday, July 1, 3-5pm: Three Sheets to the Wind. Authentic tribute to AM Gold classics from the ’70s and ’80s, the smoothest music ever created by mankind.
Wednesday, July 2, 7-8pm: Our Lady of Angels. Portuguese band playing folk-style classics.
Thursday, July 3, 6-8pm: KabuJazz Ensemble featuring Candida Rose. Jazz, rhythm and blues, and gospel with just the right touch of international spice.

The Sea in Stone
Saturday, July 5 and Sunday, July 6: 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. 49 State Pier.
An Outdoor Sculpture and Mural Show! Music by Fire on the Moon, Food catered by Rod and Reel Seafood, The Spirit of Ishmael Puppet Performance by Brett Sylvia. Reception: Saturday, July 5. Exhibit on view till

The Return of the Charles Morgan to New Bedford
Daily 10-5. Richard Connor Fine Art, 768 Purchase St., New Bedford, MA. 774) 400-4740,
A retrospective exhibition and deaccession of the paintings of Joseph Edwards Alexander, grandson of Whaling Captain Joseph Edwards, whose first command was the Morgan.

Joseph Edwards Alexander: Works on Paper
Hours: Tue:1pm – 5pm; Wed:1pm – 5pm; Thurs:1pm – 5pm and 6pm – 9pm; Fri: 9am – 12:30pm; Sat: 9am – 1pm and 2pm – 5pm. New Bedford Free Public Library, 613 Pleasant St. 3rd Floor,
This exhibit is a sampling of Alexander’s works of paper, loaned from a private collection, that features figural and geometric abstractions of vibrant color. Complimenting the main exhibit is a display of images and memorabilia related to Alexander’s grandfather, Captain Joseph F. Edwards, and the ship for which he served as master from 1918 to 1919, the Charles W. Morgan.

Want to be a part of Charles W. Morgan Homecoming?
Why not volunteer! Click for more info.

Calling All Captains!
Be a part of the Charles W. Morgan Boat Parade! Click for more info.


The Layperson’s Guide to the Charles W. Morgan, New Bedford Guide, February 2014
1841: New Bedford Bustles, The Standard Times, Feb. 16th, 2014
Charles W. Morgan Whaleship Brings History to Life, The Vineyard Gazette, Jan 23rd, 2013 The Standard-Times, May 18th, 2014
Charles W. Morgan bids adieu to Mystic, safely sails into New London, Conn. by Steve Urbon, May 13th, 2014
Exhibition sets sail with the Charles W. Morgan by Kristina Dorsey, May 2nd, 2014
It’s a homecoming by David Collins
The Standard-Times, May 2nd, 2014
Charles W. Morgan model-builder races to finish masterpiece before summer
by Steve Urbon
The Standard-Times, April 20th, 2014
Life aboard the Charles W. Morgan included salt-horse, back-breaking labor
by Steve Urbon
The Standard-Times, April 12th, 2014
Charles W. Morgan painting commissioned for summer visit , by Steve Urbon
The Standard-Times, April 3rd, 2014, SouthCoast captain pivotal in moving Charles W. Morgan whaleship , by Steve Urbon
The Standard-Times, Feb. 16th, 2014, New Bedford’s history scripted in 1841, when Charles W. Morgan launched , by Steve Urbon
The Vineyard Gazette, Jan 23rd, 2013, Charles W. Morgan Whaleship Brings History to Life , by Sara Brown
Our Universities | Our Kentucy News Source, March 19, 2014
NKU Melville scholar sets sail in June on historic whaler which inspired Moby-Dick


The CHARLES W. MORGAN is the 2nd oldest historic vessel in the country, accurately restored and rigged for sailing.  As an artifact, the conditions are not as consistent as in a building or on a modern boat.  Visitors will need to cross a gangway to board the MORGAN, and the vessel is not wheelchair accessible. There may be tripping hazards, and there are steep ladders to go below deck. The events and exhibits along state pier including Mystic & New Bedford exhibits are wheelchair accessible.

Bags, backpacks, suitcases & rolling bags, and any container capable of carrying more than 1 liter of liquid will not be allowed onto the State Pier.  Pocketbooks, diaper bags and baby strollers will be searched at the screening area.

In addition to regular metered parking, the Zeiterion and Elm St Garages in the Downtown area, there will be free satellite parking available on Saturday, June 28, – Sunday, June 29, and Friday, July 4 – Sunday, July 6, at New Bedford High School, 230 Hathaway Blvd, New Bedford, with shuttle service provided ( $2 for round trip fare, Children under 12 ride free). It is highly recommended to park in the satellite lot during those specific days.
Click for more info.

With an array of festivals and activities, summers are a perfect time to visit New Bedford. To avoid the rush, we recommend booking your accommodations as soon as possible. Please mention the following Charles W. Morgan event codes while booking your stay at the participating Hotels in the New Bedford area:

Marriott Fairfield Inn & Suites New Bedford Waypoint Event Center
2 double beds $174, event code: mrgmrga
king suite $189, event code: mrgmrgc
reserve by May 30, website

Residence Inn Marriott
Studio Suite at $189 – event code: cmbcmba
One Bedroom Suite at $199 – event code: cmbcmbc

Hampton Inn
Event code: CWM

Seaport Inn & Marina
Event code: morgan2014


Captain Haskell’s Octagon House, 508-999-3933, Visit Website

Davenport House Bed & Breakfast, 508-999-1177,Visit Website

Melville House B & B, 508-990-1566, Visit Website

The Orchard Street Manor, 508-984-3475, Visit Website



Mainsail Sponsors

Mayor Jon Mitchell/City of New Bedford
Senator Mark Montigny/Mass Office of Travel and Tourism

Headsail Sponsors
Anonymous Gift
Southeastern Massachusetts Convention and Visitors Bureau
The Standard Times

Mainstay Sponsors

The Mary Morley Crapo Hyde Eccles Fund
New Bedford Historical Society
New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park
Russell Morin Fine Catering

Keel Sponsors
AFC Cable Systems
Anonymous Gift
Michael Dury
Reynolds DeWalt
Zeiterion Performing Arts Center
Boston Marine Society
Joseph Abboud Manufacturing Co./Men’s Wearhouse