Legacy of Shipbuilder Matthew Turner Preserved Through Construction of New Tall Ship

Educational Tall Ship Inc.

2330 Marinship Way Suite #150

Sausalito, CA 94965


January 19, 2012


“Legacy of Shipbuilder Matthew Turner Preserved Through Construction of New Tall Ship”

Sausalito, CA – An ambitious undertaking is underway along the San Francisco Bay waterfront to construct a wooden tall ship in the tradition of one of the great shipbuilders of the nineteenth century. The Educational Tall Ship for San Francisco Bay (ETS) is a non-profit organization that is constructing a new wooden ship that is inspired by Matthew Turner’s classic sailing ship Galilee. The project’s Executive Director, Alan Olson says, “We are not only hoping to stir some interest in the history of Matthew Turner, but to preserve and revitalize the rich maritime history of the San Francisco Bay.” Turner was the most prolific ship builder of his, or any other, age constructing more than 220 ships in his shipyards in San Francisco and Benicia. Turner, who got his start in the Gold fields outside of San Francisco, returned with his fortune and invested it first in shipping and later in ship building.

By the late 1860’s Turner’s yard, near modern day Mission Bay in San Francisco, was churning out innovative new ship designs that were specifically tailored to the conditions of the Pacific Ocean trades. Turner’s ships were fast and stable, and could make the run from the West Coast to the trading islands of the South Pacific in record time. This made the ships especially attractive to the sugar magnates of the time like Spreckels and C&H Sugar and to shipping companies like Matson Lines.

Turner’s ships were also in demand from sailing enthusiasts and his sailing yacht Lurline won three of the first four “TransPac” races from Los Angeles to Hawaii. Turner had a love for pleasure sailing himself and was a founding member of the San Francisco Yacht Club.

The new ship being built by ETS will share many of the classic characteristics of the original Galilee with modern upgrades to make her probably the most environmentally sustainable wooden ship ever built. An innovative hybrid propulsion design will allow the vessel to operate with no fuel consumption under normal conditions. Utilizing locally grown, FSC certified, forest products and recycled materials will also add to the minimal carbon footprint that the project is striving to achieve.

The construction is set to get underway in the spring of 2012 and last 18 to 24 months. During the construction ETS will provide volunteer and educational programs to get the community involved as much as possible. “Making this vessel the entire Bay Area’s tall ship is our dearest goal” Olson adds. Upon its completion the ship will go into service as the flagship for “Call of the Sea”, a Sausalito nonprofit that provides opportunities for Bay Area youth to experience sailing and the bay first hand.


For More Information Contact:

Matt Suddaby

Educational Tall Ship

2330 Marinship Way Suite #150

Sausalito, CA 94965