Lady Maryland Facts

Pungy – Chesapeake Bay schooner that sailed the bay as a fast workboat, primarily in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

  • The name “pungy” may originate from the place where some of the first pungies were built – Pungoteague Creek on the Eastern Shore.
  • The first pungies were built in the mid-1800s. They were common on the Bay from the 1880s through the early 20th century. There were no pungies on the Bay (or in the world) from the 1950s until Lady Maryland was built in 1986. Today, she is the only pungy schooner in existence.
  • Pungies were primarily used for trade to make money by carrying perishable cargo. Pungies were engaged in many activities in the 1800s including oystering, carrying watermelons, tomatoes, fish, peaches, grain, cans, people, mail, and lumber.
  • Lady Maryland was built in 1985-1986 by the Lady Maryland Foundation, a public non-profit organization. We are now known as the Living Classrooms Foundation.
  • The cost of the ship, $650,000, was donated by individuals, businesses, and foundations with some aid from the State of Maryland and Baltimore City.
  • Mission: to provide hands-on, multi-disciplinary educational experience for students in the fields of marine and nautical science, history, economics, geography, and ecology. Students from every county in Maryland sail the Lady Maryland on the Chesapeake Bay and coastal waters from Maryland to Maine.
  • Lady Maryland is made out of wood, principally from the trees of Maryland, such as White Oak and Pine. In addition, Douglas Fir and Mahogany were used. Much of the wood used to build Lady Maryland was donated by the Maryland D.N.R.
  • Lady Maryland is painted pink and green. This is the traditional color of pungies. Some say pink was used because the oxides and pigments needed for pure white paint were not readily available in the 1800s. Others say the builders used the same buckets that contained the red paint for the bottom and when mixed with white paint, produced Pungy Pink. A third theory is that pungy schooners were fast sailing vessels often used to transport produce around the bay so it was painted in the colors of a watermelon as a sort of advertising scheme. Although there is no consensus on the origin of the paint scheme, we all agree that the colors work well together and she is a beautiful boat.
  • Length of Lady Maryland: 104 feet overall (bowsprit to boom end), 72 feet on deck, and 64 feet 3 inches length on water.
  • Width: (beam) 22 feet.
  • Height: Mainmast -80 feet, with topmast – 92 feet.
  • Draft: the distance between the boat’s waterline and the lowest part of the keel –7 1/2 feet.
  • Lady Maryland has 4 sails -Jib, Foresail, Mainsail, and Topsail. Sail Area: 2,994 square feet.
  • Lady Maryland has 20 berths (bunks) for sleeping on board.
  • Weight: Displacement weight – 82.5 tons, Ballast – 18 tons. 15 tons inside the bilge and 3 tons built into the keel.
  • Lady Maryland has two 80 horsepower diesel engines provided by Cummins Power Systems.
  • Lady Maryland is Living Classrooms Foundation’s flagship.