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ELF - '30-footer' Boston class cutter


01-NSHOF Elf LOA: 68' (28' 8" LWL, 35' Length on Deck LOD)
Class/Type: '30-footer' Boston class cutter
Builder: George Lawley & Sons
Designer: George Lawley
Launch Date: 1888
Skipper: Rick Carrion

ELF is an 1888 Lawley-built (Boston) ‘30-footer’ class cutter and has been a continuous part of American maritime culture for more than a century. She was built by George Lawley & Sons for a Mr. William H. Wilkinson in 1888 as a state-of-the-art racing yacht. ELF was built at a cost of $3,500 more than 125 years ago. Today she is on the National Register of Historic Places.

ELF sported a topsail that reached 68' 6" into the air to grab every bit of wind available, and like other racing vessels of her day, her lines and rigging were adapted and innovated from successful merchant ship designs. Following a lively career as a gaff topsail cutter rigged racing yacht, Elf pioneered off-shore yacht cruising in 1893, by being the first small craft to successfully cruise round-trip from Marblehead, Massachusetts to Halifax, Nova Scotia, an achievement documented by Henry Howard in his 1946 autobiography.

The current owner acquired the boat in 1971 is a somewhat dilapidated condition, and set out on a multi-decade effort to bring her back to her original glory. Today, ELF participates frequently in NSHOF sailing activities, including our educational programs to teach children math and science through sailing.

Click here to visit ELF's website at the Classic Yacht Restoration Guild, with her complete story and several photos.


69 Prince George Street, Annapolis, MD 21401
Phone: 410.295.3022 Toll-Free: 877.295.3022
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