Stories from the Beverly Yacht Club
Beverly Yacht Club
99 Water Street
Marion, MA 02738
Located in the small town of Marion, adjacent to Buzzards Bay, the Beverly Yacht Club is one of the oldest yacht clubs in the United States, founded in 1872. The club hosts a number of regattas, including two biennal hostings of the Marion to Bermuda Cruising Yacht Race and the Buzzards Bay Regatta.
BEVERLY YACHT CLUB BECOMES NSHOF FOUNDING MEMBER
From the Commodore:
Through the contributions of the membership, it is with sincere pleasure that the Beverly Yacht Club becomes a Founding Member of the National Sailing Hall of Fame. The Beverly Yacht Club was born for the purpose of supporting the development of yacht racing beginning with our founding Commodore, America's Cup yacht designer Edward Burgess.
Since 1872, it has had an active racing program that has participated in or held major regattas throughout its history. From its Junior Sailing Program, the sponsoring and management of the Marion Bermuda race, to sending member athletes to the Olympic Games, we have maintained through our 140 years a clear focus the sport.
We are looking forward to a long association and future participation in the activities of the organization.
Raymond J. Cullum, Commodore
The Beverly Yacht Club was founded in 1872 by a group of sailors from the Eastern Yacht Club who wanted to race small boats under 30 feet on the waterline. Ned Burgess, the club's founding member and first commodore, was best known as the designer of three successful America's Cup defenders — Puritan , Mayflower , and Volunteer — in the late 1800s. Ned was an active racer who started the “wet pants league” of small boat racing.
Withing ten years of its founding, the club had so successfully championed small boat racing that more sailors from the south shore and Buzzards Bay had joined the club. In 1882 and 1883 the BYC hosted what was believed at the time to be the largest union regatta recorded in America, with some 113 and 171 small and large boats participating.
In 1895 the club moved to Pocasset and in 1913 to Marion, a colonial-era town known for its shipyards and salt works, and in the 19th century its whaling fleet.
Today, the Beverly Yacht Club shares duties with the New Bedford Yacht Club in hosting the annual Buzzards Bay Regatta, which began in 1972 and today is the largest multi-class regatta in the country, drawing over 450 boats and 1200 sailors across fifteen different classes, organized and run by over 200 volunteers during the event's three day weekend.