Erie’s Flagship Niagara will soon have some company at the Erie Martime Museum!

The Flagship Niagara League (FNL) is excited to announce that the 1893 Essex, MA-built fishing schooner Lettie G. Howard will offer programming at the Erie Maritime Museum. Paired with the U.S. Brig Niagara, the two vessels will offer day sails to Museum visitors, the public, and the community. This is a two-year programmatic collaboration.

With this programmatic collaboration, FNL will enhance the visitor experience at the Erie Maritime Museum while simultaneously expanding Niagara’s renowned and award-winning sail training program. Lettie G. Howard, winner of Tall Ships America’s Sail Training Program of the Year award in 2014, will be offering public day sail programs to the Erie community while Niagara visits other ports during the 2018 and 2019 sailing seasons. The first public day sail is scheduled for May 25 in Erie. These two vessels, each educational and sail-training platforms, will work together to advance the objectives of both the Flagship Niagara League and South Street Seaport Museum.

The union of these two well-known organizations and sail training programs will also parallel another connection: the construction of the Erie Canal. Neither Erie nor New York City would be what they are today without the Erie Canal. This collaboration will directly connect New York City and Erie in ways that have not been possible since the Canal was superseded in 1918.

“The Flagship Niagara League has been working toward this collaboration for three years; to finally see it come to fruition is just incredible. The collaboration with South Street Seaport Museum and with the schooner Lettie G. Howard, will give us the opportunity to expand our services while enhancing the visitor experience at the Erie maritime Museum,” says Executive Director Shawn Waskiewicz.

Capt. Jonathan Boulware, Executive Director of the South Street Seaport Museum spoke enthusiastically about the schooner’s voyage to Erie and the partnership. “We are thrilled with our programming and partnership with Flagship Niagara League and Erie Maritime Museum. Too often museum artifacts live under glass vitrines, but many of ours, including the much-beloved Lettie G. Howard, clearly serve our mission as working artifacts. We could not be more proud to connect the New York harbor with Erie. It is also fitting that the schooner will make this voyage in 2018, the 200th anniversary of the Erie Canal. New York City and Erie owe their existence to this vital inland waterway. The Erie Canal connected the heartland of America to the ports of the world, making New York the busiest port and the financial capital of the world.”

Day sails aboard Niagara and Lettie G. Howard are on sale now at: