Edwin D. (E.D.) Morgan was a particularly notable organizer and manager of successful America’s Cup defenses during the golden period of defenses by very large sloops. His long record in yacht racing, including the America’s Cup, led to the accolade “The Greatest American Yachtsman” by renowned yachting writer, W.P. Stephens.
After many years racing lesser yachts, Mr. Morgan came to particular prominence in yachting circles as the owner of Nathanael Greene Herreshoff’s breakthrough yacht GLORIANA, which won all eight races in the New York Yacht Club’s most competitive class in 1891. Thus began a legendary partnership in competitions over many years between E.D. Morgan as owner and manager and N.G. Herreshoff as designer and builder. The duo’s accomplishments included very direct involvement with four Cup Defenders: VIGILANT in 1893 over VALKYRIE; DEFENDER in 1895 over VALKYRIE II; COLUMBIA in 1899 over SHAMROCK; and COLUMBIA in 1901 over SHAMROCK II with E.D. Morgan as syndicate manager.
In addition to serving as commodore of the New York Yacht Club from 1893 – 1894, E.D. Morgan was four times a member of the Club’s America’s Cup Committee. A graduate of Harvard in 1877, Mr. Morgan attained great respect from all that he accomplished over a long life in which his yachting involvement was central. He owned some 17 vessels including steamers, schooners, sloops, America’s Cup Defenders and many smaller yachts.