A history almost 100 years old
The schooner Marie Clarisse, classified "heritage", is a sailboat of nearly 40 meters intended for navigation on the high seas. The ship, easily maneuverable, was perfect for coastal navigation and deep-sea fishing. It is characterized by a curved. She proudly sports her two masts and cream colored sails. Its deck, rudder and three accesses to the hold, make it unique. The Shelburne Gazette and Coast Guard have long praised this schooner by reporting that no boat in service could surpass it, whether in terms of design, build quality or equipment on board.
Built in Shelburne, Nova Scotia in 1923, the schooner was named Archie F. Mackenzie. From 1923 to 1942, the schooner was used for fishing and braving the seas of Newfoundland and Nova Scotia. From 1942 to 1974, the vessel was used for cabotage/coastal navigation. Legend claims, the schooner would have made a trip to the West Indies at the time of prohibition.
In 1974, the Marie Clarisse arrived in the waters of the St. Lawrence. Unfortunately, she sank in 1976. Fortunately, for her, a naval officer Alain Canuel, bought her. He wanted to use her for a training boat. Officer Canuel managed miraculously to raise her out of the muddy bottom of the Louise Basin and restore it to the Mailloux shipyard in Isle-aux-Coudres.
On June 19, 1977, the schooner was renamed Marie Clarisse in memory of another Marie Clarisse built in Isle-aux-Coudres in 1908 and had disappeared. (This era witnessed many maritime disappearances.)
In 1978, the Ministry of Cultural Affairs initiated a maritime heritage. Premier René Lévesque bestows the honor of ''heritage'' on the Marie Clarisse and a new life begins for the schooner.
In 1983, the Dufour family bought Marie Clarisse. The schooner promoted the prestigious Manoir Richelieu and the Hotel Tadoussac. It offered local cruises for tourists. The schooner sailed in the waters of the Saguenay Fjord for 18 years.
In 2001, the schooner was restored. The Société Loto-Québec became the owner. While promoting tourism in Charlevoix, it was made available free of charge, to non-profit organizations for funding purposes.
In spring 2005, the schooner Marie Clarisse became the property of the Musée maritime de Charlevoix. In 2010 and 2011, Marie Clarisse served as a training ship to encourage students to work in teams and excel in school.
From 2012 to 2015, in collaboration with 3E Events, the City of Quebec, the Ministry of Culture and Communications and Loto-Québec, she re-located to the Bassin Louise in Quebec City. The schooner welcomed boat lovers for a guided tour of her exterior and interior features.
Since 2016, the Marie Clarisse has been dry docked at the museum's shipyard and is open to the public.