Launching of the Cadet

video and photography by Jim Dugan

The Tugboat Cadet was built in Kennebunkport by Bernard Warner in 1935 or 6 for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  She was designed by the Corps as a 40 foot motor launch hull design no. 134.  At some point she was sold to Ellis C. Snodgrass who built the Cousins Island Bridge in Casco Bay. The Cadet went on to be owned by Cianbro from 1969-1084 after which she was bought by William Clark as the Cadet Corporation in the Portland area.  She was used last by John. C. Gibson from 1984-1989.

In 2001, John and Kathy Foss saw the Cadet in the parking lot at the Carriage House Restaurant in East Boothbay.  They purchased the Cadet from George and Rosemary Bourette, the owners of the restaurant.  The purchase price was one dollar plus Kathy’s labor: sanding, repainting and varnishing the Bourette’s lapstrake boat.  After spending many happy years as a centerpiece of the Perch Island Yacht Club parking lot, Cadet was trucked in July of 2001 to the North End Shipyard by Frank O’Hara, Jr.

John Foss and many crew members spent the next 10 years rebuilding the Cadet. Portions of the keel and lower framing are original. The builder’s grandson supplied the original plans.

The Cadet was relaunched on November 26, 2011 in Rockland Harbor.