No matter how the wind howls or the sea lashes, 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.

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!

Race Rock Light
Opening July, 2014. Curated by Pierce Rafferty. ​  

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.  HERE.  

International Day of Rememberance at the United Nations - March 25, 2012

Vintage Dive Helmets 
from two private collections:  Jay Kane and Ed Uditis.

The 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.

Read the new  2014 Autumn Newsletter

Keep up with what's happening  
Custom House Maritime Museum is on Facebook
​Facebook New London Harbor Light      
Facebook Race Rock Lighthouse

Every Thursday, from 5 to 6 o'clock PM we're on TV. 
Watch New London Maritime Society Custom House Maritime Matters, on New London Metrocast cable TV, channel 25, with host Dr. George Sprecace. ​

Read about the Custom House and New London in the Providence Journal,  Boston GlobeGothamistThe New York Times, The Day  editorial & The Day.
Want to know what's up? 
Sign up to receive our weekly email blasts!

Watch what we do

Read our latest Newsletter.

Volunteer  at the Custom House!

Visit our sister Custom House in Newburyport, MA.

New London Tides          New London Weather 

Seafood WATCH - What seafood to buy now.

Click right to see > Community / History Links
Keep up with >> USCG Tall Ship Eagle

What is the World Beach (Sculpture) Project?

For all the events going on Downtown, visit the District Community Calendar.    

In 2013, the US Postal Service made a youtube video about 
New London Harbor Light.  See it HERE.

See our Video about Race Rock Light Station (thank you Todd Gipstein)​.

Remember: The Custom House is available for private rentals.  
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 CTVeolia / New London Water Authority,  &  and by the work of dedicated volunteers, members & friends. 
CalendarBlogLibraryLighthouse StewardshipAmistadAbout Get InvolvedRentalEducation

      OPEN Tuesday through Sunday, 1 to 5 PM, Admission $5.      
      150  Bank Street, New London, CT 06320  -  860-447-2501

      New London Maritime Society - Open year round - your 
      local, independent, community museum - telling the stories
      of New  London's waterfront.  
Above, 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.

NLMS visits the Lightship Nantucket in Boston.
November 10, 1909 - NL Ledge Lighthouse was completed 105 years ago.

November 7: the day 253 years ago New London Harbor Light was first lit.

October 26, 2014: The 2014 Boat - Lighthouse Tour Season is now over - We had a TERRIFIC SUMMER and will do more of the same in 2015 

August 25: the 175 anniversary of the Amistad coming to New London

July 31: 225 years ago, congress established the US Customs Service!

April 21, 2014: We won Yankee Magazine's 'Best of New England Travel 2014' Editors' Choice for Best Lighthouse Tours

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. 

Phase I restoration of New London Harbor 'Pequot' Light is almost complete!  We still need $8,000.         Donate today >>>

Watch HERE!  Read about it in The Day.   Watch on TV.

Our campaign Be Part of Something BIG, raised nearly $120,000 in donations and lighthouse program revenues, and an estimated $300,000+ in in-kind donations. Spring's appeal in honor of NLMS past president Ben Martin has raised another $60,000. Donations still may be sent to Ben Martin Lighthouse Fund, Custom House Maritime Museum, 150 Bank Street, New London, CT 06320, or use donation button at right. Ben was instrumental in developing our lighthouse programs--for both preservation & recreation--and we appreciate his leadership and vision.

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 volunteered to erect and dismantle the scaffolding; members of the the Painters Union volunteered to do the actual painting of the lighthouse. General contractors, Loring & Son Masonry donated removal and testing of one window and taking core samples of the tower and more -- work valued at $30,000. 
See all our generous Lighthouse Sponsors at left.
Thank you to everyone contributing to this tremendous effort! 
We'll post process photos of the restoration on facebook
Local diver and historic dive-gear collector, Jay Kane, loans us the magnificent Mark V deep dive suite we have on display in the museum's front hall.

Last summer, he borrowed the suit and took it for a dive off Fort Trumbull, New London. 

Here, at right, are photos of that event.

 You can see the suits employed at New London's TA Scott Company in the early 1900s (photo at top right). The Mark V suit was the standard gear for the Navy from the early 20th century into the 1980s!

 The helmet weighs 60 lbs, each shoe: 20. There is a belt composed of 10 lead weights, with 10 weights with each piece of lead at10 lbs. Altogether, the suit weights 200 lbs+, which is enough to counter the buoyancy of an adult male.

In February, 2014, Jay took the gear to Florida for another dive. 

We are thrilled with the tale and happy to have the suit back at the Custom House!

Barry's Ice Cream and Candy - 10% off the purchase of Ice Cream or Candy
Bean & Leaf - 10% off Purchase
Carribean Cuisine In-n-Out - 10% off Purchase
Chaplins - 10% off Purchase
Copperwood Grill - 25% off Total Purchase of dinner or drinks
Custom House Museum Shop - 10% off purchases (not to be combined with other discounts) 
Daddy Jacks - 10% off Purchase
Dickson's Tavern - 3 Headed Pirate Pants cocktail for $5
Flavours of Life - Free small soapstone heart hand carved in Kenya with a $25 purchase
Mangetout - Free cookie or bar with lunch purchase
Muddy Waters - Free small coffee with lunch purchase
Nearly You Wigs - 20% off Purchase
Northern Light Jewelry - 50% off Whale Tail Jewelry
Steaming Kettle - 10% off Purchase
Studio 33 - free lighthouse car magnet with a purchase of $20
Sweeties Bakery - 10% off Purchase
with more offers to come

    Learn about >  Maritime New London
I'm Part of Something BIG Lighthouse Pin are now for sale at the Custom House. 
Purchase an I'm Part of Something BIG pin at the Custom House Museum Shop for $10, beginning July 1. Pin wearers may partake of the following discounts at businesses in downtown New London on weekends, July through October, 2014.
Here's our first group to tour Plum Island, just about to board the boat Friday morning, July 25, in Old Saybrook. 
All 2014 Plum Island tours are Sold Out, but we have a new book at the Custom House MUSEUM SHOP on the history of that mysterious island.
Visit the MUSEUM SHOP  for terrific gifts for all ages.
We have sailing ship kites, deep-sea dive children’s lunch sets,
nautical clocks (above), elegant scarves, submarine
toys, rubber stamps, rubber duckies, cookie cutters,
old-time gifts, maritime books, and sea creature ornaments. We have Lighthouse Keepers caps, Moby Dick- the card game, balloon-powered toy boats, whales of every sort, books for the very young and the very sophisticated.
Enjoy the season. NLMS members receive 10% off their purchase.

We participate in the BlueStar Museums
program, providing free admission to active-duty members of the armed services and their families all year

​Created Equal: America's Civil Rights Struggle  
FREEDOM SUMMER film & discussion with Lonnie Braxton 
Thursday October 30 at 6:30 PM 
at Public Library of New London FREE

Created Equal: America's Civil Rights Struggle is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Humanities that uses the power of documentary films to encourage community discussion of America's civil rights history. NEH has partnered with the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History to develop programmatic and support materials for the sites. New London Maritime Society's program at Public Library of New London is one of 473 institutions across the country awarded a set of four films chronicling the history of the Civil Rights Movement. All events are free and open to the public.

On behalf of the SYC, Diana (Mimi) Tyler presents director Susan Tamulevich with a check from the Shennecossett Yacht Club Lighthouse Regatta, held on August 2, 2014. And the good news is: they're going to do it again in 2015!
September 15, 2014 - Today Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell awarded New London Maritime Society the New London Ledge Light Station, through the 2000 US Lighthouse Preservation Act. Our friends at the New London Ledge Light Foundation will continue their fine stewardship of the light! Now the three major beacons leading to our historic port are secure under local stewardship for generations to come. 

Read about it in The Day!
Sunday, November 9, 2 PM - NLMS ANNUAL MEETING  
details at left
New London Maritime Society 31th Annual Meeting  --  A Celebration of the Restoration of New London Harbor Light & the Acquisition of New London Ledge Light
Sunday, November 9, at 2 PM 
​please make advance reservations by November 5 at 860-447-8700

Join us at Ocean Beach's Port 'N Starboard. 
We're having chowda', hors 'oeuvres, and cake --a perfect Sunday lunch. 
The meeting will be short, the food delicious, the entertainment agreeable!  
The party also is a chance to meet and thank the many volunteers who helped restore the lighthouse.  

We have a lot to be grateful for, let's celebrate together. Admission is $35.

Sign up on, or call 860-447-8700 - we'll call back.