Island Spotlight: Don Peacock Lynx Privateer

This week we speak with Don Peacock, President and relief captain of Lynx. In 2016 Lynx was purchased from Woods Maritime LLC, by the Lynx Educational Foundation, Lynx hails out of Nantucket Island, Ma. Lynx winters in the city of St Petersburg, Florida our winter home.

Tell us a little bit about the history of Lynx 

Donald Peacock: The original Lynx was built in Fells Point, Maryland, and launched in 1812. Lynx’s Letter of Marque cost the owners $34,000. She is a War of 1812 Privateer / Blockade Runner referred to as a Baltimore Clipper. This Lynx was built in Rockport, Maine and launched in 2001, she is authentic in every way but we do have an engine and some minor electronics.

How did you get involved with Lynx?

Donald PeacockGrowing up summers on Nantucket I was enamored by the ships that would visit Nantucket especially Shenandoah. My brothers and I would spend many hours on her and the time to go ashore was when the Nobska rounded the point at night when she sounded her whistle, it was time to climb out of the rigging and get the last launch ashore. I have been involved with Lynx for 10 years.

What’s your role with the ship and tell us about your background as a sailor?

Donald Peacock: I am President of the Lynx Educational Foundation who owns the ship. I am also Co-Captain with my son Captain Alexander Peacock, I have been sailing for 54 years. My Grandfather pushed my brother Doug and I off the beach at the Creeks on “our” Sailfish and said – Figure it out, I will be back later!!!! Alex started sailing at five year’s old in his own Optimist

What’s your favorite part of being involved with Lynx?

Donald Peacock: As a steward of this National Treasure, Nantucket’s Tall Ship, I take my roll of “Sharing the Ship” very seriously. Our partner in education on Nantucket, is Egan Maritime Institute, with programs designed to State Standards by our Director of Education, LeeAnn Buse, we provide an educational maritime experience for free to Nantucket kids with the support of the schools. Pauline Proch,Ex Director at Egan and the Lynx program have seen many of our student Alumni go to the Maritime Academy and we are very proud of four students who have graduated with big licenses and eight others are enrolled. I love sailing the channel and along the North shore, so great to see so many people admire the ship from the beach or the Steamship and fast boats.

Give us a fun or unusual fact/story about the boat or your time on the water. 

Donald Peacock: The British captured Lynx in 1813, she was considered the most beautiful Privateer they had seen. Lynx was sailed to England, so they could understand the unique design that enabled these ships to sail circles around anything the British had they took Lynx apart and drew her out on paper. When Lynx returned to Halifax, as a patrol vessel late in the war she came back with the drawn plans and her original Letter of Marque! those plans were found in 1997 in Canada and used to help guide the build of this Lynx, Nantucket’s Tall Ship.

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