U.S. Brig Niagara sails off to Cleveland for repairs

Local News

After a few delays the U.S. Brig Niagara headed out of Erie for repairs.

It’s been two years since the U.S. Brig Niagara has sailed. On October 13th, it took off on its journey to Cleveland for repairs.

About 20 volunteers worked to get the ship ready for take off at 5:15 p.m. for the 12-hour trip to Cleveland.

The U.S. Brig Niagara set sail for Cleveland to get some repairs done, but not without some delays in taking off.

“Our latest delay was because there’s a bridge in the old river in Cleveland that was not operating, so we had to wait,” said William Sabatini, Captain of the U.S. Brig Niagara.

Before you can set foot on this beautiful ship once again, according to the captain there are still a lot of repairs and preparations needed before she can return.

“The commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the Pennsylvania Historical Museum Commission has funded this project to make it so we can rebuild our transom. The transom is for the back part of the ship, it has some issues we wanted to address,” said Sabatini.

Chris Gagliano is a volunteer photographer for the Maritime Museum, but has not had an opportunity to take pictures of the U.S. Brig Niagara in two years.

“That’s why I’m here today, just doing some volunteer photos because it will be the first time we will be able to see her moving again since 2019,” said Chris Gagliano, Volunteer.

According to the captain, tours will begin once the ship returns to Erie in November.

“The ship is Pennsylvania’s and everyone that lives here. This is our ship. To have her getting underway again for the first time in over two years to go to Cleveland and get everything done is really a big deal,” said Sabatini.

Now that the ship has sailed for Cleveland, the volunteer hopes her photographs of the U.S. Niagara can give people in Erie a different perspective.

“I hope they bring smiles and hopefulness that we’re coming back from so many things. Maybe the Niagara will be our symbol,” said Gagliano.

Sailing tours will begin in May of 2022.

It won’t be long before you can tour the U.S. Brig Niagara once again. The captain said that he hopes the ship will be back before Thanksgiving.

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