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An ‘Absolute Beauty’- The Woods Hole Spritsail boat

Forty years ago, nautical draftsman Dave Dillion commented on the features of a Woods Hole Spritsail boat: “…I am prejudiced as the devil; I think this is an absolutely beautiful boat….”

Woods Hole Historical Museum’s Conversation, An ‘Absolute Beauty’- The Woods Hole Spritsail Boat on September 29 with Porter Hoagland, retired WHOI scientist who has just completed a two-year wooden boatbuilding and restoration program at the IYRS School of Technology and Trades in Newport, will highlight the distinctive design features of the Spritsail.

He has been restoring a Woods Hole Spritsail boat, circa 1905, and will focus on the design aspects in a historical context as a means to establish the boat’s provenance. The talk concludes with a “field trip” to E.E. Swift’s “Spy” (1893-94) in WHHM’s boat museum, one of 10 such boats known to be extant.

While at IYRS, Dr. Hoagland worked with his teammates to help restore a 1979 Beetle Cat and a 1931 Herreshoff 12½ . From early on, he’s had an interest in sailing cat-rigged boats.

The conversation on Thursday, September 29, at 12:30 PM will take place in the courtyard in front of the boat museum, weather permitting. If necessary, it will be indoors at the neighboring Woods Hole Public Library reading room. The event is co-hosted by the library.

Woods Hole Historical Museum is at 579 Woods Hole Road.