Sloop designed by Nathanael G.Herreshoff America's Cup
Size: 76 cm L x 69 cm Hgh Ref. SMA-08
In 1894, William K. Vanderbilt came for the second time to see
Nathanael Herreshoff to commission a new defender to race the
America's Cup against Valkyrie III the next year. Vanderbilt was
believing in Herreshoff's genious and gave ''carte blanche'' to the
'Wizard of Bristol' to build the New-York Yacht Club's next
challenger. Herreshoff reminded his previous bad experience when
Vigilant's sliding centerboard had jammed and hindered his boat: he
decided to build Defender with a fin keel. The yacht was designed
in the utmost secrecy and her construction was shrouded in mystery.
Nobody was allowed to enter the yard and Captain Nat certainly did
not appreciate the press and photograhers. In building Defender,
the Hereshoff brothers' special innovation was the use of
aluminium. But as from the first tests, the boat suffered from a
phenomenon about which little was known at that time: corrosion due
to electrolysis appeared after she was launched on June 23rd, 1895.
America's Cup 1895: at the 9th challenge, Defender beated Valkyrie
III and won the Cup.