Brigantine Black Pearl - I need information

I hope that this is not a crime to ask about a brigantine on the Schooner Forum... If so, please feel free to keel haul me :)

I am researching the history of the Black Pearl. Below is the compilation of info that I already have. I would be very much obliged for ANY additions, corrections etc. I am interested in historical facts, people involved, photos, drawings and gossips and informal opinions about the ship. Many of ASA members must have seen the Black Pearl sailing.

Fair Winds and Thank You...

Wojtek (Voytec) Wacowski (


1. ) Designed by: Edson Burr Schock (1871-1950) (?)
- this is my conclusion - I eliminated his son - Edson Irwin Schock
(1897-1988) and grandson Charles David Schock, (1923-) as less probable
constuctors. Anybody knows where Mr Charles D. Schock may live now?

2. ) Built by C. Lincoln Vaughan (Vaughn?), the builder is described as the Newport, RI shipbuilder. The boat was built in Wickford RI, - various sources are giving various dates :
1938 (ASTA published "Sail Tall Ships!") ,
1948 (presently defunct
1950/1951 (Thad Koza "Tallships of 21st Century)

3. ) Vaughn sold The Black Pearl in 1958 to Barclay Warburton III, a wealthy Newport man. Mr. Warburton graduated from Harvard in 1948 and was later elected to the Massachusetts Legislature. He settled in Newport and, in 1967, founded the Black Pearl restaurant there.( restaurant still popular and famous in New England) , He was married to Mary "Minnie" Wanamaker Warburton - who inherited part of large fortune left by father: Rodman Wanamaker ($35 million in 1928). Barclay Warburton III helped to promote the South Street Seaport Museum in New York City by displaying the Black Pearl at the museums' pier in the early 1970s. The brigantine sailed to the Caribbean (several times?) , took part in the first New York OpSail in 1964, took part in the Cutty Sark Tall Ships Race in 1972 together with the "Eagle", the first American vessels to do so. Took part in The Bicentennial Celebration in 1976 , took part in the Transatlantic Race from the Bermudas to Boston organized by the ASTA in 1976

Warburton was so inspired by the enthusiasm and spirit he saw in Europe in 1972 during an international gathering of tall ships and young people, he set out to create a similar organization in order to bring the same kind of spirit to the United States. He is credited with founding ASTA in 1973. The Black Pearl became its flagship. Upon Warburton’s death, The Black Pearl was
willed to the organization (ASTA ?)

Mr Warburton died on May 1, 1983 survived by five children, Barclay H. 4th of Washington, D.C., Margarett R. of Los Angeles, Miranda of Pullman, Wash., and Rosemary W. Hardisty and Peter L., both of Newport. Barclay H. Warburton IV is losted as member of ASTA Board of Directors Class 2002.

Quote: "This is the great purpose of sail training - that the greatest handiwork of man, the sailing ship, shall be borne across the greatest handiwork of God, the sea, to bring together our young people in friendship." Barclay Warburton III, ASTA Founder

4.) Black Pearl sailed in The Operation Sail of 1983, tall ships race from Venezuela to Philadelphia to Newport to Lisbon, Portugal (under new ASTA management ?)

5. ) The BLACK PEARL HOLDING COMPANY was founded to preserve the ship, she was completely overhauled in 1985 Took part in the 1986 Operation Sail in New York. Took part in The Rededication of the Statue of Liberty in 1988 A one-hour documentary film about the "Black Pearl" was made in 1990 with the support of the National Maritime Historical Society.

6. ) In 1993 purchased by the Aquaculture Foundation, used for sail training programs for a regional high school devoted to teaching marine science via hands-on techniques Took part in Tall Ship race from Norfolk, Va. to Montauk Point, N.Y., in
celebration of the 1995 Special Olympics Took part in Irving Maritime Fleet in Canada summer 1996
1998 - 10th edition of ASTA Sail Tallships! mentions Aquaculture Foundation campaign to raise $1.25 million for complete renovation of the ship before TallShips 2000. (Never happened. WW)

from (Aquaculture) as posted on Aug 21, 2000: "The Black Pearl has once again fallen into disrepair, due to lack of maintenance funds."
"The Black Pearl – the jewel of the American Sail Training Association -will need about $300,000 to get her totally ready and shipshape"

At that time Michael Williams and Edwin T. (Ted?) Merritt are listed as contacts for the vessel

The website is dead from summer 2002


Overall length: 21.20 m
Length (hull): 18.00 m
Breadth: 4.70 m
Draught: 2.50 m
Sail area: 185 m2
Power: 165 PS
Engine: Hercules

"its rigging enables the vessel to be managed by only 2 seamen"

(Thad Koza)
LOA 79 '
Beam 15'

(ASTA Sail Tall Ships! imperial data+ data recalculated by me to metric for
Sparred length (LOA) 79" = 24.07m
LOD 52' = 15.85 m
LWL 43' = 13.10 m
Draft 9' = 2.74 m
Beam 14' = 4.27 m
Rig Height 63' = 19.20 m
Freeboard 6' = 1.83 m
sail area 2,000 sq.ft = 186 m2
sail number TS US-33
28 GRT

The Black Pearl can accommodate up to 10 sailors, plus the captain and mate. The ship has a toilet, hot and cold water for washing and showering, a large icebox and an antique four-burner alcohol stove.

sunset.JPG18.94 KB

Black Pearl

Gorgeous boat! I for one would be interested to hear what you find out. I saw her a few times around NYC in the late 80s while crewing on CLEARWATER. No knowledge of her since. If I ever win the lottery I would be tempted to buy her.

She is NOT the same boat commanded by Capt. Jack Sparrow! Nor the one in the Round-The-World Race.

Greg DeCowsky
Chair, Schooner CASHIER Restoration


I recall her well having met her then captain during a port visit to
Atlantic City, NJ. I noticed in an article she was homeported in Stamford, Conn. 2004 or '05. I may have saved some paperwork and photos which I'll gladly copy and forward. Also have her on VHS during tallship event, Philadelphia, Pa.

Black Pearl

My father owned Black Pearl from the time I was two years of age until his untimely death in 1983. Black Pearl was the flag ship for the American Sail Training Association, the organization my father founded in 1973, after we sailed Black Pearl on her trans atlantic voyage in 1972, to participate in Tall Ships '72 in Kiel Germany. I grew up on the boat until I was 27 years old, I was 15 when we sailed trans atlantic in 72. Black Pearl has never been to Venazuela nor has she been to Portugal. I can tell you most everything you could think of to ask about her. Feel free to contact me at my email or home phone. 401 846 4105
Peter L Warburton
Owner, 1920 Alden schooner Abaco, which is still for sale by the way.

your yacht

ian m arnott
dear Sir I am at this time most seariously looking to purchase a schooner preferably an John alden Malabar but i will consider others . A project needing major attention would be preffered as i most enjoy bringing a sick vessel back to life and to then see her enjoying herself in her natural environment again could you please send me a link that i may view your yacht that is for sale that i might view her vital statisticks this would be most appreciated
Good day to you Kind sir
I awaite your timly reply
Ian Arnott

Schooner YoHo

the 64 ft Alden schooner YoHo is for sale in Anacortes Washington, for $18,ooo.oo

YoHo Ho and a bottle of rum - link has expired

link to YoHo has expired

Black Pearl

She was launched in 1948 in Wickford, RI. She was Mr. Vaughan's pet project and was built from the wood the government was sending him during the war to build mine sweepers with.
The war ended, the wood stopped coming and she was finished approx. 10 feet shorter on deck than she was designed to be. I am a model shipbuilder of museum quality model ships,I am getting ready to build a model of her, but I have to go and measure her first as she wass not built to her drawings. She is in Bridgeport, CT still, as far as i know.
And believe me when i tell you, it will take power ball lottery strike to put her back in shape again.
Peter L. Warburton

Black Pearl

How bad off is she? Would like to talk about what it would take to bring her back to sailing condition, and use her for sail training again.

Captain Tom Wing
Continental Navy Foundation

Black Pearl

It was Edson I. Shock who designed her.
P. Warburton

the Black Pearl web site and domain name

A few years ago (probably 2005 or 2006), I was eating in restaurant on Houston Street in New York. I was using my wireless laptop to check my email. I own a web site building and hosting business. The family at the next table was interested in the laptop.

One thing lead to another and I learned that the gentleman was an attorney based in New England and that he was an officer of the Aquaculture Foundation. He told me of the Black Pearl. Said he was hoping to find support for restoration. Said that the webmaster of the website had kind of disappeared - an all too common complaint in our business. To make matters worse, that webmaster had registered the domain name in his own name - a big ethical and practical NO-NO as seen in the events that followed. He let the registration expire.

The gentleman asked if I knew how to recover their control of the domain name. I said I would see if I could do that and would restore it to them pro-bono. Gave me his business card.

A few days later I discovered a window of opportunity that would allow that recovery. I wrote and phoned him a number of times over the weeks that followed, but he never responded. So I dropped it.

Today I was cleaning out old, dead-end contacts like this and did a Google to see what the status is.

Appropriately enough, when that window of recovery opportunity expired, the name was grabbed and re-registered by one of those domain name pirates that will sell it to whoever pays the ransom. Meanwhile, they park it and use it to run a fake search engine page that generates advertising revenue.

If you visit you will see that. A different pirate has done the same thing with the dotCOM version of the name.

So, in sum, I must say that it appears that Aquaculture Foundation's handling of its web site is a paradigm for their stewardship of the Black Pearl itself.

Pity. I would have built them a good pro bono web site, as I have for many other good causes.

I could not even find a web site for the foundation itself. Possible it has gone the same way?

Black Pearl

My Wife and I will be bringing Black Pearl back to life. We acquired her just this week and will be moving her to Olcott New York in the spring.

Black Pearl

Where is Black Pearl now? Do you still have her?

Black Pearl

The "jackass" brigantine was featured in a 1967 issue of National Geographic. What does she look like now? I did a bit of sanding and painting on her restoration while at South Street Seaport, under Michael Bull, carpenter. We sailed her to Port Washington prior to her launch. Somewhere I have photos and 8mm film. Oh, and the original arch board is hanging on my wall.

Black Pearl

Just a small bit of technical information, she is not a "jackass" brigantine, nor is she a brigantine, she is technically an "Hermaphrodite Brigantine". We wish the Liberty owners all the luck in the world with her. She has been a huge part of more lives than could be imagined and changed so many.

ian m arnott

ian m arnott
Hi guys does anyone know of a malabar schooner Masts and full rig plus sails that i could purchase for my soon to be launched 64ft malabar restoration. She was oridgonally a schooner and was re-rigged as a cutter in 1934 her partners chain plates etc are all still there and intact.I know that what i require is out there as i myself have very sadly had to cut one up several years ago due to a very searious bought of iron sickness. The owner of that malabar insisted that he was going to have a new hull built > that never happendand i am informed that his full rig and sails was sold just a couple of years ago. So come on guys let me know. Even if it needs fixin ill fix it
Regards to all Ian Arnott

Black Pearl website note

Nice note, Joe. Had a run in with web 'pirates, too. You do pro bono? Let's talk. Fair winds, Collie Lutynski

Black Pearl at her new home Olcott NY

If you would like to see a picture of her click on Brigantine Black Pearl
Life is good.

Black Pearl my recollection

It was April 1972.  I left college in New York and headed to New Orleans.  When I pulled into Charleston SC, men were hand sweeping Main Street.  I didn’t know what to make of it.  Maybe I’ll stick around here for a bit?  I found this mom and pop motel on the outskirts.  The following morning I went back into town.  Enjoyed my first plate of grits and grabbed the local paper to check out jobs.  An article caught my interest about this boat that arrived the same day as me.  The writer bragged about the attractiveness of its lines.  But it was his brief interview with the captain that hooked me.  I rushed out of the diner to find the Black Pearl tied up in the harbor.  Hello, I yelled.  Captain Warburton came up top.  He looked as though I woke him up.  From the dock I waived the paper over my head, did you see this article about you and your boat?  Can I come aboard? 

I’ve never been to sea but I sure would like to go.  He looked me up and down.  Well a couple guys just quit on me.  I can’t pay you much.  I’ll give you forty bucks a week plus sea clothes.  We leave for the West Indies tomorrow.  You’re welcome to sail with us.  We motored out the following night past Fort Sumter.  I was mesmerized by the sparkling phosphorescent sea breaking off the bow.  Hey get back here, the captain at the helm shouted.  He was afraid I would fall overboard right then and there because I was leaning over so far. That is how my three month journey aboard the Black Pearl began.  Here I was a city kid who grew in Rochester NY.  Never once got seasick.  Jumped off that boat butt naked hundreds of miles from land.  Loved every moment.  Especially at the helm from midnight to 4 a.m. with Howie, the first mate.   

I contacted his son, Tim years later.  The captain had died.  But Tim told me that the Black Pearl was down by me.  I was living in North Jersey at the time.  Took my wife to South Street to see her.  And then one day we were strolling across the Bear Mountain Bridge and low and behold the Black Pearl was motoring up the Hudson.  What a beautiful sight.  

I made my living managing construction projects and very seldom get a chance to recall this special period.  But I got to chatting with this guy I work with about the stars and I told him about the Black Pearl.  He found this blog and forwarded it to me with a remark that it must be following me because I am back in Rochester now and so is the Black Pearl.  I still have that newspaper article.  I am going to dig it out.