About Us

In 1971, A. Sidney DeWolf Herreshoff and Rebecca Chase Herreshoff founded the Herreshoff Marine Museum to preserve and perpetuate the legacy and accomplishments of the Herreshoff Manufacturing Company and its founders, John Brown Herreshoff and Nathanael Greene Herreshoff. Today the campus includes a large museum facility, the old family homestead, six former company buildings, and a large portion of the company's waterfront with a marina.

As a result of more than fifty years of careful acquisition, documentation, and restoration, the Museum boasts over seventy significant boats, ranging from the 8½' dinghy, NATHANAEL to the 75' DEFIANT, built in 1992 for the successful defense of the America's Cup.

Step aboard restored originals to experience the finely appointed interiors and gain a sense of what it was like to cruise aboard these historic boats, or peruse the Nathanael Greene Herreshoff Model room which holds a collection of of 500 models that are works of art themselves and a testimony to the genius of Captain Nat's design process.

A range of exhibits illustrates important facets of the Herreshoff history. Besides the yachts and models, the Museum has catalogued and displayed hundreds of artifacts and memorabilia significant to the Herreshoff legacy.


Capt. Nathanael Greene Herreshoff


In 1878, John Brown Herreshoff, a blind boatbuilder from Bristol, Rhode Island, who had been in business since 1863, went into partnership with his younger brother, Nathanael Greene Herreshoff, a steam engineer and self-taught naval architect. The name of their new firm was the Herreshoff Manufacturing Company, and the partnership was an immediate and lasting success. The same love of competition and technological innovation that had made J.B. and Nat almost unbeatable when as boys they raced sailboats together on Narragansett Bay brought them fame as builders of some of the world's fastest steam yachts, torpedo boats, and racing sailboats.

From the first, the Herreshoff Mfg. Co. was noted for the ingenuity and excellence of its designs, its construction methods, its manufacturing and business efficiency, and for its uncanny ability to create fast and stylish boats. Although the Herreshoff brothers never lost their love or mastery of steam engineering, it was as producers of outstanding racing and cruising sailboats up to 162 feet in overall length that the Company earned its most enduring fame.

Between 1893 and 1914, for the defense of the America's Cup, Captain Nat designed and built seven of the largest, most complex and powerful racing sloops the world has ever known. Of these, five were selected to sail as defenders, and all five were victorious. The firm also launched many hundreds of custom designs, both large and small, and a number of one-design classes (among them Herreshoff 12'1/2s and 15-footers, S boats, and New York 30's, 40's, and 50's) that have never been bettered for all-around sailing excitement and pleasure.

John Brown Herreshoff


  • Robert D. Yaro, Chairman
  • Alison Ponder, Vice Chair
  • Paul Burmeister, Treasurer
  • Elisabeth Lavers, Secretary 

Robert A. Ayerle

Nevin P. Carr

David Coit

Thomas J. Culora

David Ford

Peter Gerard

Robert Girrier

Eric Hall

Halsey C. Herreshoff

Halsey C. Herreshoff II

Steve Kloeblen

Lawrence Lavers

William H. Lynn Gina Macdonald

Tim Palmer

John "Jay" Picotte

James Shriner

Meghan Stasz


Talbot Baker Jr.

Geoffrey B. Davis

Mary L. Feeny 

Bill Lynn

President & Executive Director

Tori Drew

Finance & Operations Director

Evelyn Ansel


Kirk Cusic

Education & Waterfront Director

Julia Turgeon

Development Associate

Lucy Renauld


Norene Rickson

Registrar, Librarian & Archivist

Svetlana Cutler

Graphic Design & Marketing Associate

Linda Baker

Store Manager

John J. Palmieri

Curator Emeritus

Jim Hurley

Dockmaster - VHF 72

John Cobb

Facilities Manager

Events Team: Kate Larkin & Alyssa Wood

Rentals & Special Events Team


Call the Museum

+1 401 253 5000

General Inquiries

[email protected]

Private Tour Requests

[email protected]