Viewing the CHARLES W. MORGAN by Boat

We have received many requests from people who would like to follow the Morgan’s journey to New London on May 17 on their boat. To ensure a safe experience for all, we have assembled some answers to frequently asked questions.

What is the operating plan for the ship’s journey down the river and on to New London?
The Charles W. Morgan will be pushed downriver by a tug boat. She will be departing from the Henry B. duPont Preservation Shipyard at Mystic Seaport at 9:15 a.m. on Saturday, May 17. Any changes to this schedule will be posted on our website in advance.

What do we need room for?
The Morgan will be restricted in her ability to maneuver for the entire length of the Mystic River, especially from the Museum to below the Railroad Bridge, until we are in the more open waters of Fishers Island Sound.

What is the procession order?
The Stonington Fireboat
The Charles W. Morgan and tug
Whaleboats rowing
Steamboat Sabino
Launch Necessity
Fishing vessel Roann

We will also have an assortment of work boats to assist as needed and a media chase boat.

What is the minimum clearance you require?
Please allow us plenty of room to maneuver this historic vessel to New London. We ask that vessels allow 50 yards on either side and behind the tug and 100 yards in front of the Charles W. Morgan. We are operating on a tight schedule to ensure that we get through the bridges and downriver at the high tide. Delays from marine traffic could hinder her ability to be out of the Mystic River in the time allotted.

Does the ship have an operating limitation I should know about?
The Morgan is conned from the stern and her high bulwarks and freeboard create a wide, cone-shaped blind spot for the crew in front of the ship. Vessels within 100 yards of the bow of the ship may not be visible to those on board. Boaters are strongly advised to stay out of this zone for that reason.

What is the U.S. Coast Guard saying about traffic management?
The U.S. Coast Guard has issued a Permit for Marine Event for the Departure of the Charles W. Morgan. There will be a Local Notice to Mariners issued to inform maritime interests and solicit their cooperation

What radio channels should I monitor?
Boaters and other interested parties should monitor radio transmissions on VHF channels 13/16.

Once on the Sound, what happens?
The Morgan will not be sailing on May 17. She will be towed all the way to New London. Many of the vessels that are escorting the ship downriver will return to Mystic Seaport. Roann and a selection of workboats will continue on to New London as escorts. The Morgan will be tied up at City Pier near the train station in New London. She is scheduled to be first open to the public on May 24.

Follow the Rules of the Road!
As always, mariners should follow the USCG Navigation Rules, also known as the Rules of the Road. Throughout the trip to New London, the Morgan may be under tow or being pushed, may be restricted in her ability to maneuver, and constrained by draft while navigating in the channel.