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Historical Markers and War Memorials in New Bedford
New Bedford, Massachusetts and Vicinity
▶ Bristol County (131) ▶ Barnstable County (168) ▶ Dukes County (6) ▶ Norfolk County (80) ▶ Plymouth County (124) ▶ Bristol County (4) ▶ Newport County, Rhode Island (110) ▶ Providence County, Rhode Island (161)
Touch name on list to highlight map location.
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|Docked across from you (when not at sea as a sail training and education vessel), Ernestina is one of the oldest wooden sailing vessels afloat. The ship is also one of the last surviving Gloucester fishing schooners, one of only two remaining . . . — — Map (db m86768) HM|
| . . . — — Map (db m86653)|
|Threatened by demolition because it was in the path of the Route 18 extension, this Greek Revival style home was moved by WHALE to this once-vacant lot in 1979 and sold to owners who restored it. — — Map (db m107413) HM|
|A fine example of late 19th century commercial architecture, this warehouse was erected in front of the Andrew Robeson mansion and housed an auction business selling everything from antique furniture to ships. WHALE acquired the . . . — — Map (db m107415) HM|
|For many Cape Verde Islanders, the New bedford
wharf area was the first view of America. At the height
of immegration between 1900 and 1921, more than
a dozen packet boats ran between Cape Verde
and New Bedford, the main port of entry. Packet . . . — — Map (db m86766) HM|
|Paul Cuffe (1759-1817) was a sea captain, merchant, philanthropist, community leader, civil rights advocate and abolitionist. The son of an African father and Native American mother, Cuffe was born on the island of Cuttyhunk, off the coast of New . . . — — Map (db m77465) HM|
| Captain Paul Cuffe
Paul Cuffe (1759-1817) was a sea captain, merchant, philanthropist, community leader, civil rights advocate and abolitionist.
Here are some significant details about his life.
Westport, MA: site of the . . . — — Map (db m77468) HM|
Cuffe sought support in London from the African Institution - a group that was committed "to stimulating trade with Africa, without itself trading, to promote African education and improved farming methods, and to be a . . . — — Map (db m86901) HM|
|The view down Centre Street has changed little over the years, and no street in New Bedford served the whaling industry longer. Little finery can be seen in the facades of these buildings, for this was a working waterfront, where utility overrode . . . — — Map (db m58182) HM|
|Near this spot, in February 1863, a recruiting office opened to enlist men for the first black regiment authorized to fight for the Union cause. The men who volunteered here formed Company C of the 54th Regiment of Massachusetts.
If captured, . . . — — Map (db m84070) HM|
|Text on the Bronze Plaque
Near this Site
was located the shipyard of
Colonel George Claghorn
Builder of U.S. Frigate Constitution
and Ship Rebecca the first whaler
to double Cape Horn.
His service in the . . . — — Map (db m86782) HM|
|On this site in 1936, Cape Verdean and Portuguese dockworkers formed Locals 1413 and 1465 of the International Longshoremen’s Association (ILA). Prior to organizing, these dockworkers were chosen daily, based only on their physical ability, and had . . . — — Map (db m1614) HM|
|Text on Front side of Monument:
Dedicated as a Tribute
sturdy whalemen who early won fame
for New Bedford
and their successors who,
inheriting ideals and resourcefulness
gave to the city new prominence . . . — — Map (db m86677)|
As you gaze across Water Street toward the eight-pillar institution, compare closely what you see in the photograph with what stands here today. Built in 1831, the building was designed by architect Russell Warren. For 61 years the . . . — — Map (db m58192) HM|
“For my part, I should prefer death to hopeless bondage.”
New Bedford 1838-1841. — — Map (db m1615) HM|
A one-industry whaling town before the Civil War, New Bedford became a one-industry textile town afterward. Cotton bales and coal, both bound for the city's new textile mills, began to replace oil casks on New Bedford wharves.
Oil casks . . . — — Map (db m86731) HM|
The boats you see in the harbor today are mostly commercial fishing vessels - primarily draggers and scallopers; the whaling barks of the past have long since vanished. By the 1930s, just as whaling faded and the textile industry fled to the . . . — — Map (db m86680) HM|
During the Civil War many of the black men who enlisted at a recruiting office near this spot were mustered into Company C of the 54th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry. Among these recruits was New Bedford’s Sergeant William H. Carney. . . . — — Map (db m84071) HM|
|Born in Richmond, Virginia, in 1800, Lewis Temple established himself as a blacksmith on the New Bedford waterfront by 1836.
Temple manufactured his first toggle-iron in 1848. Its fastening power revolutionized the catching of whales. The . . . — — Map (db m1616) HM|
|Text on Upper Front (East) Side of Memorial:
Lost Lightship Sailors Memorial
This Memorial created in Memory of
All Lightship Sailors lost in performance of duties
Inspired by Harold Flagg, LV 73 . . . — — Map (db m86786) HM|
|Making Room-During the days when New Bedford dominated the whaling trade, 10,000 seamen were required to sail the fleet. Pacific islanders, New England farm boys, Cape Verdeans, Portuguese from the Azores, Wampanoag Indians, and immigrants from . . . — — Map (db m77467) HM|
|On the other side of the Bourne Counting House, the granite building in front of you, is Merrill's Wharf, completed in 1847. The wharf then was the longest in New Bedford port. Built by Edward Merrill for an expanding whaling fleet, this wharf . . . — — Map (db m86733) HM|
|This building possesses national significance in commemorating the history of the United States of America.
Nathan and Polly Johnson, prominent African American abolitionists, sheltered escaped slaves in this underground railroad "station." It . . . — — Map (db m97070) HM|
Has been designated a registered National Historic Landmark
Under the provisions of the historic sites act of August 21, 1935 this site possesses exceptional value in commemorating or illustrating the history of the United States — — Map (db m58196) HM|
In 1915, in the waning light of whaling's final decade, Emily Howland Bourne financed the construction of a museum building to honor her whaling merchant father, Jonathan Bourne, Jr. This marked the first steadfast effort to preserve New . . . — — Map (db m86657) HM|
|(Marker on the left side of the door) “In the same New Bedford there stands a whaleman’s chapel and few are the moody fisherman, shortly bound for the Indian or Pacific Oceans who failed to make a Sunday visit to this spot.” Moby . . . — — Map (db m95382) HM|
The outward appearance of the brick and brownstone building diagonally in front of you has changed little over the years. However, the signs identifying the ownership and use of the structure have changed repeatedly. It was originally built as a . . . — — Map (db m62358) HM|
| Change of Address
Andrew Robeson, whaling merchant and steadfast abolitionist, built this Federal-style house in 1821 on a lot on North Second Street, diagonally behind you. The estate, with its conservatory, gardens, surrounding elm trees, . . . — — Map (db m77505) HM|
|Wealth with a Conscience
Early whaling merchants lived in elegant houses along this street. But by the time Benjamin Rodman built this Federal style home in 1821, many of his wealthy friends were moving uphill away from this shoreside . . . — — Map (db m76980) HM|
Near this spot in 1767 the first ship built in New Bedford was launched.
Francis Rotch, Owner
She was one of the vessels boarded by the Boston Tea Party in 1773
— — Map (db m58183) HM|
| Home Away from the Sea
Whaling men spent much of their lives at sea. The ship was their home. Back in port, most of the poor, unskilled sailors knew no one in New Bedford and were essentially homeless until the next voyage.
In 1850 the . . . — — Map (db m58197) HM|
| Saving Mariners' Souls
After months at sea, many whaling men were unable to resist the temptations of this port city. In 1832, the New Bedford Port Society for the Moral Improvement of Seamen opened this mariners' chapel "to protect the rights . . . — — Map (db m58199) HM|
|Trial by Fire-During the early hours of January 18, 1977, gas leaked from a cracked main into the cellar of O’Malley’s Tavern, located near where you are now standing. New Bedford had suffered two straight days of record-setting cold in an overall . . . — — Map (db m62389) HM|
|Twentieth-Century Whaling-As New Bedford’s whaling industry declined in the 19th century, more than a dozen other nations began hunting whales using “modern” Norwegian methods, with fast, steam-powered vessels and heavy-gauge harpoon . . . — — Map (db m62387) HM|
|Customary Duty-Replacing a makeshift operation closer to the waterfront, the U.S. Custom House at Bedford opened on this site in 1836. Here ship captains walked up the granite steps to register their crews and declare their cargoes before they were . . . — — Map (db m62364) HM|
|On this toro rests a capstan from the American clipper ship Viking which was wrecked on this island on June 4,1863. Being bound for San Francisco, U.S.A. from Hong Kong, China. Through the intervention of the local authorities and hospitality of the . . . — — Map (db m58179) HM|
|“A Dead Whale or a Stove Boat”
(inscription on back) In honor of the whalemen whose skill, hardihood and daring brought fame and fortune to New Bedford and made its name known to every seaport on the globe. • Gift of W.W. . . . — — Map (db m1626) HM|
|Whaling Capital-In 1857, ninety-five ships and barks left these wharves on whaling voyages. In that year the industry reached its peak, and half of the worldwide whaling was conducted from the New Bedford customs district. Before petroleum was . . . — — Map (db m62411) HM|
During the war, we were getting a dollar and a half a gallon for sperm oil. And then around 1922 there was no more demand for sperm oil....The price of sending a ship to sea doubled and the price of oil dropped about 200 percent....And . . . — — Map (db m86759) HM|
|Working Waterfront-Standing here during the heyday of whaling you would have seen and heard the bustling of a whaling port preparing for sea: ship carpenters building vessels from great white oak timbers, and caulkers hammering oakum---hemp mixed . . . — — Map (db m62410) HM|