Screen Shot 2021-03-26 at 9.31.17 AM.png

MARCY-PETTIGREW SHIPYARD Funding for this historic marker was provided by the City of Portsmouth, 2011. www.cityofportsmouth.com The SHIP OROZIMBO The ship Orozimbo was built here by Daniel Marcy and William Pettigrew in 1857. Honoré Pelligrin (1793-1869), Orozimbo [built by] D. Marcy entering Marseilles, Watercolor on paper. Private Collection. Photo Ralph Moran. DANIEL MARCY Daniel Marcy (1809-1893), born in Portsmouth and orphaned at the age of twelve, became a sailor on merchant vessels. In 1831 he became a shipmaster, and in 1842 returned to Portsmouth to superintend construction of a vessel that he commanded on her first voyage. For nine years, Marcy returned annually to oversee the building of a ship and to captain her maiden voyage. In 1852, Marcy made his last voyage as shipmaster and became an independent shipbuilder. In partnership with his brother Peter and other local investors, he underwrote the construction of the Frank Pierce in 1852 and Cathedral in 1855. Not long after, he began a partnership with William Pettigrew, who had run a shipyard on Badger’s Island with Frederick W. Fernald until that builder’s death in 1855. Together they built several ships, including the Orozimbo, between 1857 and 1859. Marcy was elected to the New Hampshire House of Representatives in 1854 and then served two years in the state Senate. Following a term in Congress during the Civil War, he led an effort to revive the moribund shipbuilding industry in Portsmouth, helping to fund construction of such ships as the William H. Marcy in 1874, the Frank Jones in 1875, and the Granite State in 1877. Photograph, Daniel Marcy. Courtesy of Strawbery Banke Museum. BIRD’S EYE VIEW of MARCY-PETTIGREW SHIPYARD 1877 Bird's Eye View of Portsmouth, Rockingham Co., New Hampshire 1877. A. Ruger del. D. Bremner & Co. Lith. Courtesy of Portsmouth Athenæum. SOUTH MILL CREEK, 1937 Russell Cheney’s painting of the Marcy-Pettigrew shipyard site in 1937, nearly fifty years after it ceased operations, shows it much as it appears today. Russell Cheney, South Mill Creek, 1937. Private Collection. SHIPWAYS WERE LOCATED NEAR THIS SITE BEGINNING IN THE EIGHTEENTH CENTURY. However it was not until the 1850s that vessels were constructed here on a regular basis. In 1857, in partnership with veteran shipwright William Pettigrew, Captain Daniel Marcy launched the Sarah E. Pettigrew from this shipyard. A new era of shipbuilding had begun in Portsmouth’s South End. Until the Civil War halted the construction of merchant vessels, the Marcy-Pettigrew shipyard constructed some of the finest large vessels built in Portsmouth.