New London Maritime Society (NLMS) - CUSTOM HOUSE MARITIME MUSEUM 150 Bank Street, New London, Connecticut 06320 - phone: 860-447-2501 fax: 860-447-8086
The Custom House Maritime Museum - your local, independent, community museum - open year-round - telling the stories of New London's waterfront!
Now on exhibition: Vintage Dive Gear from Collectors Jay Kane & Ed Uditis
Visit the MUSEUM SHOP today for deep-sea diving & other nautical note cards, scarves, tea towels and rubber stamps, cookie cutters, special ribbons, new & vintage maritime books, toys, old-time gifts, and ornaments. We have Lighthouse Keepers caps, Old Town Mill corn meal for Johnny Cakes, balloon-powered toy boats, Mark Shasha books & prints; USCG video about the Eagle; whale bottle openers , cards, & coffee mug; and terrific photography. We're open from 1 to 5 PM Tuesday through Sunday!
Call 860-447-2501 to arrange your visit. Regularly scheduled tours are every Wednesday at 1 and 3 PM; reservations are required. Admission is $35 for adults, $15 children ages 8 through 13.
Every Thursday, from 5 to 6 o'clock PM we're on TV.
Watch New London Maritime Society (NLMS) Custom House Maritime Matters, on New London Metrocast cable TV, channel 25, with host Dr. George Sprecace.
AMISTAD: A True Story of Freedom
a new permanent exhibition at the site of the original Amistad events of 1839.
See New London Maritime Society's Amistad exhibition at United Nations headquarters, NYC, March 2010. CLICK >> HERE. Read the latest about Amistad America in The Day 1.23.12
Vintage Dive Helmets from two private collections.
museum's most important artifact may well be the building, itself. Built
in 1833 as New London's U.S Custom House and designed by architect Robert Mills,
it has been the museum's home since 1983. The historic Greek revival building, itself, is 180 years old.
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Watch what we do
In 2013, the US Postal Service made a youtube video about New London Harbor Light. See it HERE.
NB: Per the fire marshal, our maximum occupancy is 49 people indoors and 100 people outdoors.
The New London Maritime Society/Custom House Maritime Museum is made possible by generous grants from The Chester Kitchings Family Foundation, the Connecticut Humanities Council, Dominion Foundation, the Bodenwein Public Benevolent Foundation, the Frank Loomis Palmer Fund, the Community Foundation of Eastern CT, Veolia / New London Water Authority, & and by the work of dedicated volunteers, members & friends.
The Custom House Maritime Museum participates in the Blue Star Museums program, which offers free admission to active duty military personnel and their immediate families all year.
In June, 2012, NLMS traveled to Boston and the lightship Nantucket.
OPEN: Thursday through Sunday, noon to 3 PM, Admission $5.
150 Bank Street, New London, CT 06320 - 860-447-2501
WHAT'S UP at the CUSTOM HOUSE ?
Silhouette artist Deborah O'Connor was at the museum on Sunday, April 28.
Artist J H Torrance Downes, Eva & John Henry, right, brought the original drawing for Connecticut's Preserve The Sound license plate to add to our exhibition.
Irene Rissi's string students performed at the Custom House June 7.
On Thursday, June 27, the GSA conveyed ownership of Race Rock Light from the US federal government to the New London Maritime Society. NLMS thanks the GSA/NPS for their confidence in us; we also thank the people who helped with the Race Rock application by writing letters of support, and the many members, volunteers, & donors who help us, everyday, to maintain our vision.
Saturday, July 13, we just had one event (above) -- but it was spectacular!
We had a USCG Honor Guard, the New London Community Orchestra String Ensemble performed the National Anthem, Tom Callinan performed a new song about the lighthouse, our speakers included Senator Anderea Stillman, Mayor Darryl Justin FInizio, Rear Admiral Sandra Stotz, Rick Uluski and Joseph Mazzola of the USPS, and Quincy Vagell of WTNH-TV Storm Team. Philatelist Alan Bentz created three first-day cachets. They all sold out, but we're still taking orders. The place was packed! NLMS Trustees then handed out our newsletter & sold BIG buttons during SailFest.
Thank you all for your enthusiastic support of our Lighthouse Saturdays.
Yes, we wielded swords (the better to cut the lighthouse cakes!) & the Gala was gorgeous (above)!
Thanks to everyone who attended, to Dave Sugrue, who provided the splendid venue at Ocean Beach Park & to the gracious Port 'N Starboard staff; to Tom Callinan, who sang his ballad to NL Harbor Light; to the smooth Venlo Odom trio featuring Lorain Ohio Simister; & to super-great volunteer Rachel Perry, who arranged for all the lighthouse cakes.
Prof. Steven Jones holds forth at our Real McCoy Rum Tasting..
NLMS visits the Lightship Nantucket in Boston.
The Celebration of the 15th anniversary of the Frank L. McGuire Maritime Research Library on Saturday June 15, with author Verlyn Klinkenborg, was a great event at the museum. Be sure to see our new exhibition of treasures from the McGuire Library, curated by librarian Brian Rogers.
Sponsors of Lighthouse Saturdays & the Lighthouse Fund include: The Chester Kitchings Family Foundation, Frank Loomis Palmer Fund, Veolia Water / New London Water Authority, Dominion Foundation, Surveyor Jim Bernando,
Hefel Masonry LLC, Captain Scott's Lobster Dock, Ocean Beach Park, The Big House B&B, Cristifori Foundation, CTrides, New England Regional Council of Carpenters, Stone Masons Union, John Mock, Dave Fallon, Fishers Island Ferry, Cross Sound Ferry, Dominion Foundation, and the Eschenfelder Family.
Phase One Restoration of New London Harbor Light is slated to commence in May 2014.
March 23, Sunday at 9 AM - Seal Watch
from New London with Project 'O'
Seal Watch participants board Project 'O's Enviro-lab in New London at
the Custom House Pier to travel to popular winter seal haunts. The
seals are actually Maine natives who make Long Island Sound their winter
destination. It's a 2 1/2-hour boat trip. The cabin on the boat is heated. It is suggested one wears
deck shoes or boots and very warm clothing for the trip. Bring your
camera and binoculars!
Reservations are required and can be made by calling Project 'O' (860) at 445-9007 between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m, Monday through Thursday, and between 9:00 AM and 1 PM on Fridays. Please reserve before Friday, March 21, at 1 PM!
Above: Images from last summer.
PLEASE MAKE A CONTRIBUTION
No matter how thick the fog or stormy the seas, we see clear sailing ahead for our work preserving and promoting New London's maritime heritage.
None of what we do would be possible without support from like-minded individuals whose contributions keep us going every single day, week, month, and year; whether we're running a boat tour to Plum Island, or researching a manuscript in our library. By
contributing to the Society's Annual Fund, you provide the essential
day-to-day support that enables us to preserve, protect, and present New
London's maritime heritage.
Every contribution counts.
Please take a moment to make a 100% tax deductible donation to the
New London Maritime Society. The New London Maritime Society
is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization, tax ID #06-10866688.
Many thanks for your support.
You may specify LIGHTHOUSE FUND, for your donation.
Custom House Maritime Museum
New London Maritime Society
150 Bank Street, New London, CT 06320 860-447-2501
Wednesday, March 12, 2014, at 7 PM
We are combining our annual Founders Day Celebration with a concert to raise money for New London Harbor Light.
Join Ann Arbor-based Mustards Retreat - singers Michael Hough and David Tamulevich - for a concert of traditional and contemporary "folk from the heart." They are performing for us right after opening two performances in Maine and New Hampshire with Peter Yarrow (of Peter Paul & Mary fame). The duo has performed at Wolf Trap Park with Peter Yarrow, the Roots of American Music Festival at New York City's Lincoln Center, the New Bedford and Mystic Sea Music Festivals, The Guthrie Center, and other venues throughout the mid-west and East Coast.
Our 2014 Founders Day Celebration honors NLMS past-president Ben Martin and his vision to acquire Harbor Light. The concert benefits the New London Lighthouse Fund and specifically the restoration of New London Harbor Light (slated to commence in May 2014).Tickets: $20, $15 for NLMS, WCNI, & Friday Folk members, seniors, and students. Audience limited to 45, per fire marshal.
Call 860-447-2501 to make your reservations.
Somewhere between the Golden Globes and the Oscars, NLMS held its own award ceremony (above). On Thursday, January 23, 2014, at the Washington Street Coffee House, Robert Pittaway (standing at left) bestowed the first Pittaway Lighthouse-Keepers Award on lighthouse advocate Pierce Rafferty.
Last summer, Mr. Rafferty's efforts culminated in the exhibition, Race Rock Light,
which opened at the Ferguson Museum in June 2013. The award is named in honor of Mr. Pittaway's late wife, Louise Davis Pittaway, a passionate lighthouse lover, NLMS honorary trustee, and long-time curator of Stonington's Old Lighthouse Museum, who died in 2013.
NLMS 2014 Founders Day Celebration & Mustards Retreat Fundraiser/Concert
it's for the LIGHTHOUSE~ Wednesday, March 12, 2014, 7 PM
Sunday, April 6: Historian Allegra di Bonaventura leads a tour of Hempsted Houses, then a book discussion of For Adam's Sake, with tea, at the Custom House Maritime Museum.
One of the most-significant books about New London history is Allegra di Bonaventura's recently published For Adam's Sake. Join us for both or either of this two-part program.
At 1 PM, Ms Bonaventura will lead a tour at CT Landmarks' Hempsted Houses -- the site where many events in the book actually took place.
At 2 PM, join Ms Bonatventura for a book discussion / tea up the street at the New London Maritime Society's Custom House Maritime Museum. You've read the book, now here' a chance to ask your questions. Call 860-447-2501 for reservations.
Joint admission to both events is $10 for CT Landmarks & NLMS members, $15 all others.
We want potential buyers to see & understand how much the Inn means to New Londoners.
Phase I restoration of New London Harbor 'Pequot' Light will commence in May, 2014. It is estimated the process of scaffolding the 89-foot lighthouse, removing the paint, investigating and repairing the mortar, restoring the seven bronze windows, repainting the tower , and removing the scaffolding will take from six to eight weeks. New London Maritime Society began fund-raising for the restoration in June, 2013. So far, that campaign: Be Part of Something BIG, has raised nearly $90,000 in donations and lighthouse program revenues, and an estimated $300,000+ in in-kind donations.
As soon as he heard about the restoration effort, Chris Bachant, of the Carpenters Union, reached out to the Maritime Society with the promise of volunteer help. He then contacted friends at Brand, who came forward with their own offer. Brand, Specializing in Specialty Services Solutions, proudly supports the maritime society in the restoration of this historic landmark and will donate full scaffolding for the project; The New England Regional Council of Carpenters has volunteered to erect and dismantle the scaffolding; members of the the Painters Union have volunteered to do the actual painting of the lighthouse.
Photo, ca. 1881-1885, courtesy Public Library of New London.
Composer Jin Hi Kim presents
Cross-Cultural Music Meditation Workshops
at the Custom House Maritime Museum
March 24-28, April 7-11, & May 5-9
Cross-Cultural Music Meditation is a bi-cultural exposure to the basic aesthetics and concepts of Asian Jin Hi Kim philosophy, music, and instruments enabling contrasts to Western music and creative thought. Through the sessions, participants gain first-hand experience of the role music plays in meditation and the benefits it offers to develop a calm, focused group experience. Individuals and groups (up to 10) are encouraged to sign up for the music meditation workshops, which will be offered again in April and May.
Music meditation, directed by Jin Hi Kim (above), includes a group chant (sonic text) and a creative music ensemble through listening and playing various Asian percussion instruments. These instruments (singing bowls, finger cymbals, temple block, harmonium and clappers) have an historic role in various Asian meditation practices.
Each workshop session involves 10 participants and takes place over five consecutive days. At the conclusion of the residency there will be a culminating performance with participants and Kim’s komungo (6 string Korean zither) performance. The ancient komungo will be an anchor to the daily sessions with all group members. Ms. Kim has been a pioneer of bringing this instrument into Western music in addition to being a leading international practitioner on the instrument ranging from symphonic performances to small group meditation practices. Jin Hi Kim has performed as a soloist in her own compositions around the world including at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Kennedy Center (Washington, DC), Smithsonian Freer Gallery of Art (Washington, DC), Royal Festival Hall (London), and Haus der Kulturen der Welt (Berlin). Currently Jin Hi Kim is composing two major new works which will premier in spring, 2014. These workshops are presented with support from the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts which also receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.
Workshops takes place Monday through Friday, March 24-28; with additional workshops taking place April 7 to 11, and May 5 to 9, 2014.
Two different sessions are offered: from 9 to 10 AM, and 6 to 7 PM. (Times subject to change based on student availability.)
Fee per participant is $50.
Renew yourself. Call 860-447-2501 to reserve your place.