The “Star of India” berthed in San Diego’s Harbor is the World’s Oldest Active Sailing Vessel. On Saturday, November 13th, the sea-faring iron wind-jammer will celebrate her 147th birthday at the San Diego Embarcadero Maritime Museum. The 1318 ton, 278 foot tall merchant vessel has 100 foot high masts.
The ship was originally launched five days before Lincoln delivered his Gettysburg address in 1863. The ship was christened the “Euterpe” and launched at Ramsey, the Isle of Man. The ship sailed under the British flag for 35 years and transported European emigrants to New Zealand and Australia and carried sugar from Hawaii to San Francisco before becoming an Alaskan salmon-fishing vessel. In 1901, the Alaska Packers of San Francisco bought the “Euterpe” and renamed it the “Star of India.” In 1927, local historians bought the ship and moored it in the bay. In 1958, it was acquired by the Maritime Museum and serves as a floating museum to honor the local sea-faring heritage of San Diego and can be toured from bow to stern. In 1966, it was designated as a national historic landmark.
Anchored alongside the “Star of India” are historic steamer ships. Tour the propeller-driven ferry “Berkeley”, the steam-yacht “Medea” and the H.M.S. “Surprise” that was featured in the film “Master and Commander.” The Maritime Museum vessels also serve as venues for concerts and special events.