The J. & E. Riggin is a beautiful old two-masted schooner that has been rebuilt to accommodate 24 passengers and 6 crew. She is 89′ long on deck, 120′ overall, 23′ wide and draws 7′ with her centerboard up. She was built in 1927 as an oyster dredger for Charles Riggin in Dorchester, New Jersey and is one of a very few vessels of this kind that still sail today. Her name, J. & E., comes from the names of Mr. Riggin’s two sons, Jacob and Edward. This windjammer has enjoyed the reputation of being able and fast and lays claim to having won the only official oyster schooner race ever held in 1929 on the Delaware Bay. After being rebuilt and rerigged as a passenger vessel, the Riggin has sailed Penobscot Bay since 1977. She was designated a National Historic Monument in 1991.
The Riggin is fully equipped with GPS, radar, and radio. She meets all Coast Guard requirements for construction and safety equipment. Certified to carry passengers, she fully meets all requirements for stability and watertight integrity. With her sleek lines preserved, the Riggin is still the fast and reliable sailor that earned the respect of the oystermen on the Delaware Bay. Just as she was when she was built, the Riggin has no inboard engine. Her sixteen-foot diesel-powered yawl boat, built by Capt. Jon Finger, can be used during calm spells for maneuvering into or out of tight harbors. The Riggin‘s superior sailing ability allows us to cruise by the islands and coastal scenery without the noise and fumes of an engine to disturb the spell.
The Riggin’s eleven cabins are cozy yet comfortable as on any boat. With seven cabins that have two twin beds, two cabins with three twins, and two cabins with a double bed, each features a number of wonderful touches including homemade quilts and soaps. Each cabin has a sink with cold running water, and overheard and reading light over each berth, and fresh sheets, warm blankets, pillows, and towels. Every cabin also has a porthole that provides light and can be opened for fresh air and ventilation. Our toilets (“heads”) are clean and well ventilated and are located above deck. If you wish to rinse the salty sea air from your tresses, you’ll be happy to know we have a hot freshwater shower available as well. We find that most of our passengers, actually spend very little time in their cabin — why would you when it’s so gorgeous outside?
While we do take requests for specific cabins, we do not make a guarantee that you will end up there. We want each of our passengers to be as comfortable as possible and sometimes need to make changes last minute. Requests for cabins will be taken in the order of booking dates.
1927 – Built at Stowaman’s Shipyard in Dorchester, New Jersey for Capt. Charles Riggin, named after his two sons, Jacob and Edward.
1929 – Wins the only Oyster Dredger Race.
1960 – Changes hands from the Riggin family to Capt Walter Wardley who converted her to ground fishing vessel out of NY.
1977 – Capt. Dave & Sue Allen of Rockland, Maine buy the worn schooner and convert her for passenger sail.
1991 – The National Park Service designates the J&E Riggin as a National Historic Landmark.
1997 – Capts Jon Finger & Anne Mahle become the new stewards of the J. & E.
2007 – Wins the state of Maine’s Environmental Leader Award –one of the first 50 businesses and the first Maine windjammer (and still is even 8 years later).
2008 – Named a Top Family-Friendly Cruise by Women’s Day Magazine
2010 – Named one of the top places to have Dinner with a View in Maine by Yankee Magazine
2014 – Named a Maine Classic “Best Windjammer Fare” in the Best of New England by Yankee Magazine. Also as well as one of the “must see” places to visit along New England’s “Maritime Trail”.
“ …a cruise on the Riggin is just a pleasant way to spend five days with good food and no pressing responsibility. You have maintained a delightful low-key and uncomplicated loving atmosphere…you make it easy for your passengers to stop fluttering long enough to touch earth.”
~ Dumont, R., Vermont