Mayflower is undergoing a significant three-year restoration project. The $20 million raised will directly impact the restoration, preservation and educational programing for Mayflower for years to come.

Using techniques from the 1600’s, shipwrights at Mystic Seaport Museum in Connecticut have brought in materials from around the globe to restore America’s most historic ship.

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Get excited about Mayflower’s restoration


Mayflower, Plimoth Plantation’s full-scale reproduction of the ship that brought the Pilgrims to America in 1620, was built between 1955 and 1957 in Brixham, England. The ship was conceived as a permanent memorial honoring the friendships forged between the American and UK men and women who served their countries together during World War II.  The ship set sail from Plymouth, England on April 20, 1957 with a crew of thirty-three men and arrived on the shores of Plymouth, Massachusetts on June 13 to a crowd of 25,000 spectators.

Sixty years later, the ship has lost none of her luster as an international destination. Since that time, an estimated 25 million people have stepped aboard Mayflower and imagined the Pilgrims’ experience on that historic crossing in 1620. Today’s visitors to the ship sense the perils of the 1620 voyage and methods of maritime travel of the time, observe the tools of 17th century navigation, and are reminded of their own ancestors who may have made similar voyages to the United States.


Mayflower II Mystic 2016 shipyard

The ship, one of Plimoth Plantation’s three main outdoor living history sites, is a floating classroom essential to its educational mission and a national symbol of freedom and self-determination. Mayflower is a historic ship in her own right; the Massachusetts Historic Commission determined that she is eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places and Landmarks when she returns to her berth in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 2020.

Since November 2016, the ship has been undergoing a full restoration at Mystic Seaport Museum’s Henry B. duPont Preservation Shipyard. This once-in-a century refit ensures the ship can fulfill her educational mission for generations to come. There is no better embodiment of the preservation of craft and history represented by the full restoration of Mayflower, the iconic ship at the center of The Voyage That Made A Nation®.


Under the exceptional leadership of Quentin Snediker, Director of the Henry B. duPont Preservation Shipyard at Mystic Seaport Museum, and Whit Perry, Director of Maritime Preservation and Operations for Plimoth Plantation, the restoration is on schedule to be completed in 2019, in time for Mayflower to make a triumphant return as the centerpiece of the celebrations and commemorations that will mark the 400th anniversary of the Pilgrims arrival. One of the highlights of the collaboration between our two museums has been the knowledge exchange among those tasked with making Mayflower shipshape.


Your donation will help support our $20 million project, directly impacting the restoration, preservation and educational programing for Mayflower for years to come.

If you’d like to become a donor of Mayflower Sails 2020, 
please email

Mayflower Sails 2020, LLC, is a single-member limited liability company wholly owned and controlled by Plimoth Plantation, Inc., a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, and is treated as a disregarded entity for federal tax purposes. As such, pursuant to IRS Notice 2012-52, contributions to Mayflower Sails 2020 will be treated as contributions to Plimoth Plantation (EIN 04-2210750) and are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law.