Boston should celebrate its proud history of marine craftsmanship

IN THE Globe editorial “Boston’s next big sport?” (Oct. 17), about the possibility of big-time yacht racing providing an economic boost to the city, a veteran local sailor says he is “shocked” at the city’s dearth of yacht racing, given its “marine heritage.”

Instead of sponsoring yacht races, why doesn’t the city, along with corporate partners and state and federal assistance, build a clipper ship museum to honor the glory days of sail, when East Boston’s Donald McKay was turning out the world’s greatest and most beautiful sea-going vessels, cargo-carrying workhorses that were also fleet as gazelles?

The absence of such a living monument to the past is far more shocking than a lack of yacht racing in Boston Harbor. Part of the museum project could include the construction of a clipper ship by master shipwrights working with young local apprentices (as was the case when a replica of the Bounty was built in Nova Scotia and sailed to the South Pacific for the 1962 movie “Mutiny on the Bounty”).


A clipper ship museum in Boston would be great for tourism year-round but would also fill a gap in historical knowledge for many of the city’s residents. And a locally built clipper ship (let’s call her City of Boston) would be the star attraction — and a great advertisement for the city — at Tall Ships gatherings around the world.

Garry Emmons