SOLOMONS, MD – August 10, 2023 – The Calvert Marine Museum (CMM) celebrated the docking of the iconic sailing yacht, Witchcraft beneath the silhouette of the Drum Point Lighthouse. A symbol of traditional yacht craftsmanship, the vessel was generously donated to the Calvert Marine Museum Society (CMMS) by its latest guardian, Dave Butler, from Pasadena, Maryland.

CMM’s Maritime History & Boatwright Curator, Mark Wilkins, lauded the yacht’s arrival, remarking, “Witchcraft signifies an invigorating progression in our floating watercraft collection. Crafted to race, she embodies the pinnacle of yacht-building tradition, boasting speed, stability, and a sea-friendly nature.”

Witchcraft’s acquisition aligns with the museum’s mission to immortalize the Chesapeake Bay’s recreational maritime legacy, extend youth-focused educational programs, and proffer inclusive sailing experiences. Bonnie Barrett, CMM’s Director of Development, acknowledged Mr. Butler’s magnanimity, expressing gratitude for enabling the museum “to perpetuate this gift within our community.”

An emblem of yachting elegance, Witchcraft was conceived in 1903 by the renowned George Lawley & Son Boat Yard in Boston. Initially christened Witchcraft II, she served as a racing yacht for William Bowditch Rogers, the first owner. Her adventurous odyssey to the Chesapeake Bay, marked by a perilous WWII transit, led to a three-decade-long restoration initiative, commencing in 1970 after her Chesapeake voyages.

In 2007, Dave Butler, having fond memories of sailing with his father and brother, Bryan, on the Chesapeake, sought to recreate a model of the Witchcraft. Their joy knew no bounds upon discovering its continued existence. Purchasing it in 2008, Butler completed its restoration, bringing on board its former owner, Paul Itzel, to captain the vessel.

This classic yacht not only stands as a testament to the region’s maritime history but is also poised to provide an exclusive sailing experience. The museum is ecstatic to usher in a chartering service aboard the vintage Witchcraft yacht. This service offers up to six guests a unique opportunity to embark on an evocative evening cruise, soaking in the breathtaking Chesapeake Bay vistas.

Yacht Witchcraft evokes nostalgia from an era when impeccable craftsmanship and elegance ruled the waves. As guests step aboard, they are instantly transported to a time of unparalleled luxury, with the vessel’s meticulous restoration evident at every turn.

The Calvert Marine Museum is rolling out two-hour evening cruises that promise to leave an indelible mark on its patrons. From romantic rendezvous to special commemorations, Witchcraft ensures a mesmerizing voyage.

Those eager to journey back in time can now secure their reservations via the Calvert Marine Museum’s website at Bookings can also be made by contacting Melissa McCormick, the museum’s Group and Visitor Services Coordinator. The Witchcraft yacht is available for charters from Tuesday to Thursday until October.

For a direct glimpse of the Witchcraft, enthusiasts can visit the dedicated webpage at Witchcraft | Calvert Marine Museum, MD – Official Website.

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

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