September / October 2021


Restoring the Old Bird

LARK, a 1932 Alden sloop recently restored by Gannon & Benjamin Marine Railway of Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts, ghosts along under main and genoa in light air on Vineyard Sound.

My first encounter with the sleek and slippery LARK was at the start of a Moffat Cup Race in Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts, in September 1977. I was aboard “Commodore” Pat West’s 1910 gaff sloop VENTURE, pinching by the committee boat as the gun fired. Footing faster than us and pointing higher, LARK sailed through our lee, her big gaff mainsail trimmed flat, staysail and yankee jib sucking her upwind. A large man sat at the helm drinking a beer. Pat stared at the big sloop, glanced at the scratch sheet, and said, “She should give us more time.” Rail down, the lissome hull showed us her transom, with LARK lettered in gold leaf.

“Herreshoff?” I asked.

“Alden design,” said Pat. “Lawley built, like VENTURE.” Our wives were below, arranging a picnic lunch and tending the bilge pump, frequently.

“LARK doesn’t seem to be pumping as much as us, Pat.” His eyes still glued to her transom, he said, “Well, she is a newer boat.”

Most are, I thought.

Pat perused the scratch sheet again, and muttered, “More time, we need more time. I’ll have to talk to the race committee.” Then he lit his pipe and laughed. “She’s much newer. 1932!”

Purchase this issue from Woodenboat Store

From This Issue

Issue No. 282

It was 1955, and my father and I were driving along the LaHave River in Nova

Issue No. 282

The Covid-19 winter of 2020–21 was nearly upon us. For the first time since we

Issue No. 282
Building a Butterfly Skylight

The skylight whose construction I will describe here originates with Murray

Issue No. 282
Tolman Skiff

In this installment of our series describing the construction of Renn Tolman’s

From the Community

Boat Launchings

Boat Launchings


The build was started in 2009 by Dr. David Likely of Dorn Ridge N.B.




Ace 14 day sailor designed by Arch Davis. Completed 2024.


2019 Bartender Boat

George Calkins design, owner built from plans and patterns, 20'6" double ended rough water inboar