Exploring the History of a Groundbreaking Yacht Club

Maryland's Seafarers Yacht Club has an inspiring story to tell

Chesapeake Bay
Chesapeake Bay, seen from above.
Colin Lloyd/Unsplash

When you think about records and history made by yacht clubs, what comes to mind? There’s longevity, for one thing — which includes two that have been in existence for over 300 years. There’s also the case of yacht clubs involved in collaborative events, like a massive regatta that set a Guinness World Record and raised a significant amount of money for charity.

Other history-making yacht clubs have earned their distinction by pushing back against trends and expectations. A new article at Robb Report tells the story of Maryland’s Seafarers Yacht Club, which has the distinction of being one of the oldest historically Black yacht clubs in the United States.

The founders of the yacht club created their organization out of necessity. Unfortunately, racial discrimination prevented the four founders of Seafarers from joining any of the existing yacht clubs on Chesapeake Bay, so they opted to create their own.

By 1967, they had purchased a former school to serve as their clubhouse, and the organization had endured until the present day.

The article describes an organization rooted in the community, including offering everything from STEM programs to swimming lessons to local kids. There’s also a branch of the Sea Scouts that the yacht club operates. There’s something deeply admirable about creating an organization from the ground up — and having it thrive more than half a century after its founding.

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