About Champion

In 1967, Henry BarkHausen, founder of the Association for Great Lakes Maritime History, had the 39 foot, gaff-rigged cutter Champion commissioned, which he donated to the Maritime Heritage Alliance in Traverse City, MI.

Champion’s hull was designed by the famous Fenwick Williams.  Peter Culler designed her rig and dinghy.  She was constructed at the Concordia Boatyard in Massachusetts.

Champion is a gentleman’s Tall Ship.  While she is 52′ from stem to stern, her traditional rig is identical to that of a significantly larger vessel.  24 Lines are used to spread out her 5 sails!  Her 2 piece mast is an astounding 68′ high!

Champion sails like no other.  Her centerboard and 12′ beam make her sea-kindly and quick yet stable. Her motion is finer than all others.  Moreover, she has a gentleness experienced only on wooden vessels.

Henry, his wife Alice, and their family cruised the northern waters of Lakes Michigan and Huron for almost forty summers on this beautiful vessel.

In 2008, The BarkHausen’s generously donated Champion to the Maritime Heritage Alliance in Traverse City to be specifically used for youth training. This program is supported through donations, client fees, and charters on Champion in beautiful West Bay in Traverse City, MI.

Want to see more photos of Champion? Click Here.


NoteChampion was recently the star of the Independent Film, Hide Away, starring Josh Lucas and James Cromwell.