Midcoast lens: American Boathouse restoration steams ahead

By Susan Mustapich | Oct 09, 2018
Photo by: Susan Mustapich

CAMDEN — All around Camden Harbor, people stopped to watch Prock Marine's tugboat deliver and unload an 80-ton crane, the morning of Oct. 9.

The crane rolled up onto the property of the American Boathouse, which is undergoing a multi-million dollar historic restoration. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Owner Cynthia Reed bought the property for $1.5 million in November 2017 from owners William Cannell Boatbuilding Co. Inc. Prior to the purchase, Reed's plans were reviewed by the Planning Board and in June 2017, voters approved a zoning change to allow the construction of some residential space on the first floor facing Atlantic Avenue.

Reed also entered into a development agreement with the town of Camden to guarantee the restoration would be completed in keeping with the building's historic designation and meet many other requirements.

The American Boathouse was built in 1904 to house the steam yacht Mona Loa owned by Chauncy Borland, a summer resident, and one of the founders of the Camden Yacht Club.


Prock Marine's tugboat and barge delivered an 80-ton crane to the head of Camden Harbor Oct. 9. The crane on the left generally remains on the barge, according to company president Kevin Prock. (Photo by: Susan Mustapich)
Onlookers gathered on Atlantic Avenue to look at the American Boathouse, as its layers are peeled back, during the ongoing restoration of the historic structure Oct. 9. (Photo by: Susan Mustapich)
A view of the American Boathouse building Oct. 9 shows much of the structure demolished, and awaiting restoration. (Photo by: Susan Mustapich)
The American Boathouse was vacant and unused prior to its sale in 2017. (Photo by: Susan Mustapich)
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