It’s always a pleasure to receive the latest issue of WoodenBoat magazine, but it was a particular pleasure to receive the September/October issue with its photo of San Francisco Bay’s tall ship, the Matthew Turner, on the cover, and a full feature on the inside.
It is a masterfully told tale by Latitude editor John Riise and Bay Area yacht broker and wooden-boat aficionado Woody Skoriak, who dig deep for a comprehensive dive starting with the Gold Rush days of Matthew Turner, to the dream-filled youth and sailing exploits of the Matthew Turner’s creator, Alan Olson (featured in this Good Jibes podcast), to the technical details and challenges faced when building a tall ship on the shores of Sausalito.
We were there for both the keel laying and the launch, but the real story is all the intervening years of inspiration and organization from Alan Olson, support from significant and plentiful donors, and the thousands of hours from hundreds of volunteers who brought the dream to reality. Building the Matthew Turner was an enormous undertaking, and anyone who sees the ship on the Bay will enjoy reading this story to see how she came to life.
If you haven’t yet sailed aboard Matthew Turner, there are numerous opportunities, including educational youth programs and many adult sailing excursions. You can learn how to jump aboard here. Plans for 2024 include some long-distance voyaging, so catching a sail while she’s on the Bay would be a good idea.