The U.S. Brig Niagara is back in Erie today.

We followed the return of the ship to gather more information about its voyage home.

The U.S. Brig Niagara arrived in Erie on December 15th at 9 a.m. from the Great Lake Shipyard in Cleveland.

This is not the same ship that left however. The ship under went some extensive restoration including replacing approximately 50 wooden planks.

Funding for more maintenance was set up to keep the U.S. Brig Niagara around forever.

“The commonwealth of Pennsylvania through the Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission they funded this project. This is one of those really big projects that really needed to happen. This has been deferred maintenance for quite sometime and they give us the opportunity to get out there and get the ship fixed up and get it ready for the future,” said William Sabatini, Executive Director and Flea Captain for the Flight Ship Niagara League.

The crew on the ship consisted of 18 professionals and volunteers.

Bystanders watching the ship sail into the Erie channel are proud to see a part of Erie history return to it’s home.

“Think of the guys that were on the ship. Coming into Erie had to be a big thing for them too. History made in Erie,” said Dan Manning, Erie Resident.

Now that the ship has returned to Erie, the next steps for the winter season are underway.

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“Probably after Christmas and New Year that’s when we’re going to put the cover back on and we’ll get the cover onto the Niagara. We also have to finish the cover on the Lettie G. Howard and once all that is ready to go then people will start touring the ships again,” said Sabatini.