Now Available: Keepsake Oyster Knives Crafted From Timber Used to Build Pride II

Now Available:
Keepsake Oyster Knives Crafted From Timber Used to Build Pride II
Proceeds Benefit Oyster Restoration Projects &
Pride of Baltimore II

Dale German
Woodworker Dale German

In a hundred-year-old warehouse in central Baltimore, master woodworker Dale German is hard at work. Bent over an electric lathe and surrounded by an aromatic mound of wood chips, he chisels a block of mahogany into a rounded handle of an oyster knife. Next he carefully adds a heated knife blade, emblazoned with letters.

The knife, one of only 500, is part of a project commissioned by the Oyster Recovery Project and Pride of Baltimore, Inc. in an effort to raise funds to support Chesapeake Bay restoration and preserve its rich maritime history.

Each knife handle is carved from tropical hardwood that was left over after the construction of Pride II in 1988. The knives are being crafted in an extremely small quantity over a limited timeframe.

The knives can be pre-ordered through the Oyster Recovery Partnership’s website. Orders placed by December 18 will ship in time for the holiday season: click here for complete details.

About The Historic Project

Pride of Baltimore II, courtesy Norbert Stager
Pride of Baltimore II, courtesy Norbert Stager

Throughout her storied history, hundreds of thousands of people have come aboard, gone for a sail or participated in an educational program aboard Pride of Baltimore II. Now, through this innovative project spearheaded by the Oyster Recovery Partnership, you can own a keepsake piece of Pride II herself — and support environmental efforts and Pride II at the same time.

Each knife handle is carved from timbers of bullet tree and mahogany, used in framing Pride II‘s hull and as trim on deck structures. The wood has been preserved in climate-controlled conditions since Pride II was built in 1988.

The knife blade is a 3-inch stainless steel “Boston” blade, a famous American oyster knife design known for being sturdy, versatile and dependable. It is one of the earliest known types used to “split the rock.”

Each laser-engraved knife comes with a certificate of authenticity and matching number from 001 to 500.

The Importance of Oysters to Chesapeake Life

A beautiful, usable keepsake crafted from wood used to build Pride II
A beautiful, usable keepsake crafted from
wood used to build Pride II

Oysters play a vital role in improving Chesapeake Bay water quality by creating a habitat for a multitude of marine life, including the Blue Crab and Striped Bass.

The Oyster Recovery Partnership (ORP) was established to help manage and implement Maryland’s oyster restoration efforts. Over the last 21 years, the nonprofit has planted more than 5.9 billion oysters on 2,200 acres of oyster reefs in Maryland, including the largest man-made oyster reef in the country. ORP manages the region’s oyster shell recycling program and supports other sustainable fisheries management efforts.

“Our intent through this project was to design a classic historical symbol of Chesapeake Bay culture that is practical for everyday use,” said Oyster Recovery Partnership Executive Director Stephan Abel. “This is also a way for the Oyster Recovery Partnership and Pride of Baltimore II to salute Maryland’s oyster heritage while we continue our work to preserve the traditions of the Bay.”

Once these limited-edition knives sell out, they’ll be gone forever. So order your piece of history today while they’re still available!

We thank you for your support.


Pride of Baltimore, Inc.


Captain's Log: Winterizing Pride of Baltimore II

Deciding not to sail a sailing vessel during the cold climes of winter seems like an obvious thing, but contrarily it is not.

Rig Down and Winter Frame Assembled
Rig down & winter frame assembled

Sure, cold weather sailing is not for the feint of heart or the ill equipped or ill prepared. To some degree that is the simple aspect of the decision…be prepared, or do not sail in cold weather!

But when a vessel is neither active nor lived aboard during cold weather, there is no need to provide heat throughout the vessel, thus there are many attendant details to consider for preventing damage to onboard systems due to cold weather.

In the instance of a traditionally built wood vessel, an additional consideration is shielding the vessel from sun and wet weather. Both combine to cause significant degradation to wood surfaces, coated or not. I suspect uncovered & unused wooden vessels in cold weather climes will age at least as fast as from a fully active sailing winter in warmer climes with crew aboard taking care of things on a daily basis. Whereas the cold and wet hinders any interest or even capability to clean or maintain any observed needs. Plus, regular sun exposure while resting in only one orientation concentrates aging.

Rig Down
Rig Down

Thus it is that the PRIDE OF BALTIMORE II’s winters spent in her homeport involve down-rigging all that can be taken out of the rig and covering all as well the ship with something (we use white plastic) that both keeps everything dry and the nearly completely emptied out below areas free to be open hence well ventilated (long term closed up is very deleterious to wood vessels)…but also shielded from sun rays power to age coatings, even reduce the amount of drying of the outside wood construction (deck & above water hull) that comes of regular direct sunlight without benefit of daily cleaning/wetting or changing direction of exposure of an active vessel.

The included photos provide a small hint to why it takes at least three-four weeks to winterize PRIDE. It will take at least twice as long to reverse.

Thus it is Marylanders’ Sailing Ambassador of 27 years of age and over a quarter of a million voyaged nautical miles is as strong & beautiful as she was when new…as well as being admired worldwide.

Thus it is she is ready and able to continue her ambassadorial voyages of imagination and promotion of Maryland & Baltimore far and wide. What do all of you say?

A sheltered & cosy winter wish to all of you in cold climes! 😎