Gertrude L. Thebaud

Fishing Schooner

History of the Gertrude L. Thebaud

The Gertrude L. Thebaud is one of the most famous fishing schooners out of Gloucester, home of rugged and sea-wise fishermen. This sleek, sturdy vessel was built with a weather eye on practicability of fishing and a lee eye on the pride of being the fastest schooner afloat. Eighty thousand dollars, more money than had ever been laid out for a New England schooner, was invested by Louis A. Thebaud to achieve the supremacy of the seas.

Designed along the lines of a racing yacht by the noted marine architect, Frank Paine of Boston, the Gertrude L. Thebaud was sound and seaworthy. Whereas, most fishing schooners had and overall length of 115 to 125 feet, the Thebaud's ran to 135 feet with a water line of 98 feet.

She was built at the Arthur D. Story yard in Essex, Massachusetts in the winter of 1929-30. Nine old time sail makers worked for seven weeks to finish her 8652 square feet of canvas, costing $3800. Boat builders, with three centuries of expertise behind them launched the Gertrude L. Thebaud on March 17, 1930. They towed her to Gloucester to prepare her for sea. She won the international fisherman's trophy that year by beating the Bluenose. This eased the Gloucester fishermen's pride which had been scuttled several successive times by the prowess of the Nova Scotian. However, the Bluenose has held the cup ever since her victory the following year.

The Gertrude L. Thebaud continued to add to her noteworthy record. Rated by her master, Captain Ben Pine, as a 16 1/2 knot vessel in a strong breeze, she carried Commander MacMillan on several of his Arctic explorations. The schooner was inducted at the beginning of the war as the flagship of the Coast Guard's Corsair fleet, First Naval District, to patrol off the New England coast on the look-out for submarines.

The end came for the Gertrude L. Thebaud in February, 1948, when she broke up on the breakwater at LaGuardia, Venezuela during a storm. Fortunately no hands were lost.

Our Model

The Gertrude L Thebaud is a striking model with its white sails and contrasting rigging. Great pains have been taken to reproduce the dull-black topsides of the original schooner and the red anti-fouling paint on her bottom. The deck houses and fittings are white and spars are stained with white trim. The model is mounted on a mahogony base with a brass finish nameplate.

Model Measurements

Length overall

13 1/2"


12 1/2"

How to Order

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