Shipbuilders, Allen and Sisson and the Kate Cory

In the shipyard behind the Cory store, Frank Sisson and Eli Allen built the Kate Cory in 1856. The specifications have been transcribed from the original document in the collection of the New Bedford Whaling Museum.

Carpenter’s certificate for the Mermaid built for Andrew Hicks in 1855.

[Courtesy New Bedford Whaling Museum]

Kate Cory Specifications

This is a transcription from a very faint , at times illegible, original document in the NBWM collection detailing the specifications for the Kate Cory which was built by Allen and Sisson at Westport Point. The bark Mattapoisett is noted here as a standard of work to which this vessel aspired. The Mattapoisett was built in Rochester in 1836.

We the subscribers hereby agree to build for Alex. H. Cory a Schooner of the following Dimensions and description for …. three Dollars, per ton, as follows,

Length on Deck Seventy five feet,

Depth of Hold Nine feet,

Breadth of Beam Twenty two feet,

The …, Stern, Sternpost, Apron, Transoms, Night …, …, and Stauntions, to be of good White oak.

….good White or Yellow oak.


Outside Bottom Plank to be White oak two and half inches thick.

Rail to be White Oak, three and a half inches thick.

Plankshears to beYellow Pine six inches thick.

Clamp to be Yellow Pine four inches thick.

Deck frame to be Yellow Pine, stout and well … and fastened in a thorough manner, with five and six eighth inch bolt of good iron.

Deck to be of three inch White Pine No. 1 Plank Fastened with good iron spikes of suitable size and length,….

Floor timber to be bolted with seven eighth inch copper bolts.

… bolt to be of seven eighth inch copper.

Bottom spikes to be good composition of suitable size and length.

Bottom to be fastened two thirds with …nails, one half to be locust and drove through and ….be bolted with three quarters inch copper.

Nine sixteenths of inch copper Bolt in … wood ends.

Shoeing to be put in the keel three inches thick. To be a break in the deck ….

The Cabin to be built of clean and handsome White Pine stuff, with Black Walnut tops to the lockers.

The arrangements of the cabin, Forecastle and Deck Work, to be subject to the directions of the owners and to be finished and furnished as well as those of the Barque Mattapoisett.

Windlass, …. And Winch to be attached in a suitable and substantial manner, the owner to furnish the same.

An entire sett of Board Gear to be furnished and attached to the vessel in a proper manner.

The Bottom to be graved, sheathed and coppered, the owner to furnish Paper, Sheathing Boards, Sheathing copper, and sheathing and coppering nails.

The Hull of the vessel to be thoroughly copper fastened throughout, with the exception of the Deck, Deck Frame, and ceiling as heretofore named and entirely completed in a workmanlike manner, and together with an entire sett of spars to be delivered on or before the first day of March eighteen hundred and fifty six.

The Hull and Spars to have two coats or good Paint… with

the best Navy oakum.

Twenty dollars to be allowed by the builders for Carved work, the same to be attached by them.

The owners to furnish Pumps, Bull Eyes … for Boat Davits and catheads.

Westport Point

Jan. 5, 1856

Allen & Sisson