Ship profile for the sailing ship: "Governor Stone"

Technical data of the sailing ship:

Name:Governor Stone
Ex-names:Queen of the Fleet, The Pirate Queen, Sea Bob, C'est la Vie, Sovereign
Registered port:Panama City
Base port:St. Andrews Marina
Type of rigging:SCHONER
Type of ship:Gaffelschoner
Year built:1877
Yard:Pascagoula, Mississippi, USA
Overall length:20.10 m
Length (hull):11.90 m
Breadth:3.85 m
Draught:1.18 m
Sail area:135 m2
Ship's hull:Holz / Wood
Power:80 PS
Engine:Perkins Diesel

Portrait of the sailing ship:

Last update: 08 May 2022

  • 1877 built at Pascagoula, Mississippi, as a two-masted, gaff-rigged topmast schooner, that closely fits the lines and model of the typical Gulf fishing and freighting schooners of the late 19th and the early 20th centuries, these coastal schooners carried coal, bricks, iron ore, grain, oysters, and numerous other bulk products between ports.
  • first owner was the merchant Charles Anthorn Greiner, used to haul materials from his ship chandlery and sawmill in Pascagoula out to deepwater sailing ships anchored off the mouth of the shallow Singing River and for the transfer of freight and goods to and from large, oceangoing sailing vessels that could not come into port.
  • sold to Mulford Dorlon of Dauphin Island, Alabama, in 1880. used to carry freight and, as a buyboat, to purchase oysters from tongers.
  • 1882 Patrick Henry Burns purchased a half-interest in the schooner he operated the ship after Dorlon's death in 1895 and got the full ownership in 1906.
  • in July 1922 the elder Burns transferred "Governor Stone" to his son Thomas, who continued to work her as an oyster buyboat until 1939.
  • outfitted with the first engine in 1923.
  • stranded 300 yards inland in a marsh during a hurrican, "Governor Stone" was rolled back into the water on pine log rollers. Repaired and put back into service she continued to work, carrying oysters from South Mobile Bay to market in Mobile and to smuggle alcohol during Prohibition.
  • 1939 the schooner sank at Bay St. Louis, Mississippi.
  • raised and repaired in late 1939 by Isaac T. Rhea at DeLisle, Mississippi.
  • renamed the "Queen of the Fleet" in 1940, for the next two years used as a private daysailer near Pass Christian, Mississippi.
  • fitted with a stronger engine in 1940.
  • 1942 leased to the War Shipping Board for use as a Merchant Marine Academy sail training vessel based in Biloxi.
  • Rhea reclaimed the vessel in 1947, and his estate sold her in 1953 to Charles B. Merrick of Pass Christian.
  • 1947 the engine was replaced with a 110-hp Chrysler Marine engine.
  • the schooner then passed through five owners, each of whom changed her name, respectively, "The Pirate Queen" (1956-1957); "Sea Bob" (1957-1963); "C'est la Vie" (1963-1965); and "Sovereign" (1965-1967).
  • The last owner, John Curry, conducted research that identified the vessel as the "Governor Stone", and began a program of restoration that lasted through the 1970s and 1980s.
  • 1991 deeded to a new owner, the Apalachicola Maritime Institute Inc. Apalachicola.
  • restored using original materials between September 1989 and June 1990, replacement of a number of frames and outer hull planks, installation of a new Perkins Diesel engine, brought to Apalachicola.
  • served as a sail training vessel and sailing goodwill ambassador, operated on historic sailing program charters, mainly in the shallow bays and inland waters along the upper Gulf of Mexico.
  • 1991 declared a National Historic Landmark by the National Park Service.
  • after the ship was deeded to the Friends of Eden Gardens State Park in 2003, the newly formed Friends of the Governor Stone, since 2007 a non-profit organization, took her in 2005, used for sailing at the Gulf Coast from Navarre to Carrabelle.
  • 2013 registered at Panama City.
  • 2014 major restoration in the Bay County Boatyard, supported by the Florida Department of State, Division of Historic Resources, return of the vessels state to an original 1877 look and feel.
  • capsized at her dock during Hurricane Michael in October 2018, salvaged and fund raising by the Friends of the Governor Stone organization.
  • was named for John Marshall Stone, the first Governor of Mississippi elected after the Civil War and Reconstruction, a close friend of the first owner C.A. Greiner.


Website (English, 13 May 2022):
Schooner Governor Stone: website of the supporters with history, photos, news, contact

Literature for further reading:

We recommend the following references for your further research of the ship. The references marked with have been included in the generation of the ship profile on this page.

American Sail Training Association (ASTA)
"Sail Tall Ships! A Directory of Sail Training and Adventure at Sea"
2000 ISBN: 0-9636483-5-7
(12th Edition)
Page: 128 Source with picture Source with history Source with technical data Quelle with contact