Launch of the Schooner Isabella


The Essex Shipbuilding Museum will celebrate the launch of the schooner ISABELLA, a traditional Essex-built vessel, on Sunday, August 13. The launch is scheduled for mid-afternoon at high tide.

Built by Harold Burnham Boatbuilding, the 38 foot, two-masted schooner ISABELLA continues the 350 year tradition of wooden boatbuilding in Essex, MA. Commissioned by William Greene, ISABELLA will participate in the Gloucester Schooner Festival then depart for her mooring in South Dartmouth, MA.

Some of the best viewing for this spectacular event will be from the Museum-side of the Essex River Basin. The Museum will be offering special tours and events throughout the day.

About the Essex Shipbuilding Museum

The Essex Shipbuilding Museum tells the extraordinary story of a small New England village whose citizens built more two-masted wooden fishing schooners than in any other place in the world. Preserving the history of the wooden shipbuilding industry, an integral part of the economy and culture in New England and the United States since the 1630’s, the Museum maintains one of the best maritime collections in the region. Museum projects have built or interpreted schooners, Chebacco boats, sailing lighters, dories and privateers. The last intact American fishing schooner, the EVELINA M. GOULART is currently being preserved and documented. Innovative, experiential educational programs teach concepts through a rich mix of content knowledge and hands-on activities for children, adults, seniors and educators from around the world. Located in the heart of Essex, Massachusetts, the Museum is adjacent to an acre of land set aside in 1668 ‘for a yard to build vessels and employing workmen for this end’ and is integral to the town’s historic character, scenic vista and central river basin. Features include antique shipbuilding tools, photographs, documents, and exhibits portraying the shipbuilding industry. Tours include video presentations and hands-on activities. A gift shop offers ship plans, maritime books, and other nautical memorabilia. For current events, exhibits and programs, please call 978-768-7541 or visit