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U.S. Coast Guard barque Eagle returns to New London

New London — “America’s Tall Ship,” the U.S. Coast Guard barque Eagle, returned to its home port at City Pier on Thursday evening and will be officially welcomed with a ceremony on Friday hosted by the National Coast Guard Museum Association.

The Eagle has been homeported in New London since 1946 but since 2014 has been at the Coast Guard Yard in Baltimore, Md., undergoing an extensive refurbishment. The most recent period of refurbishment marks only the second time in the intervening 73 years in which the ship was not in its home port.

Former Eagle skipper and current president of the National Coast Guard Museum Association, Captain Wes Pulver, USCG (ret.), said the historic tall ship has more than a significant past in New London, but holds important value for the region today and into the future.

“The newly restored cutter will be a focal point of the New London waterfront for decades to come — including serving as the pierside exhibit for the future National Coast Guard Museum,” Pulver said in a statement.

Eagle has been in service for the U.S. since 1946, when CDR McGowan led a small crew which refurbished the barque in post-War Germany and sailed it to New London.

“EAGLE is critical to the Coast Guard’s mission as the vessel has been home to training for over 10,000 Coast Guard Academy Cadets and over 2,000 Officer Candidates,” Pulver said. “And it’s not just the Coast Guard. In her history of service, EAGLE has hosted Tall Ships America crews, New London JROTC, international maritime students, the crew of the USS Constitution, and Midshipmen from the Naval Academy in Annapolis Midshipmen.”

Friday’s ceremony starts at 5 p.m. at City Pier. It is open to the public.


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