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The Cruise of Privateer Lynx



The Maiden Voyage of Privateer Lynx
October 2001
Portsmouth, NH

READ: The Making of a Modern Privateer

The Lynx arrives in Portsmouth, NH for its maiden voyage from Rockport, ME after a glorious sail parade from the mouth of the Piscataqua River. In opening ceremonies, the mayor issued Lynx a letter of marquee allowing its captain to board any ship that was an enemy to Portsmouth. A group of UNH shanty singers performed maritime tunes. The following day the ship was opened to its first tour audience. Over 500 visitors boarded Lynx in its first of two tour days in port. The wandered every inch of the brand new ship.

Trained crew members dressed in period costume explained how privateering ships overwhelmed their prey by challenging, boarding and capturing enemy merchant ships. Usually their victims did not even put up a fight. Privateering vessels were authorized by the US Congress from 1796 to 1815 to act as a private navy in defense of Portsmouth and other seaport towns.

Lynx owner/builder Woodson Woods shouted a "hello" to Woods raised the $2.5 million required to build the tall ship. "Woody" told us that he selected Portsmouth as home port, in part, because of the city's important connection to privateering -- and because of NH's tax free status .

Then the Lynx was off to defend the nation as an ambassador for freedom and against tyranny, Lynx left Portsmouth for a sail treaining journey to the Carribbean, the Panama Canal and up the West Coast of the USA. -- JDR







Photos by J. Dennis Robinson for
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