Blue Duck

The Blue Duck

In 2018, we worked with the National Park Service to renovate the historic Blue Duck building in Islesford, Maine.

Built in 1852 by the local Hadlock family as a ship's store, by the early 2000's the Blue Duck building had seen better times.

Named for a painted duck decoy long mounted on the building's north gable, the Blue Duck was used mostly for storage during Brendan's childhood and was donated to the National Park Service in 1948. Brendan would occasionally climb through an unlocked window with a former boss, an island builder named Courtney Chaplin, to check out the Blue Duck's interiors and think about how massively underused the space was. 

So when the opportunity came to lead the renovation of the Blue Duck, Brendan couldn't resist. Around 2016 the island community started lobbying the Park Service to issue a request for proposals from groups interested in leasing and restoring the building. Islesford Boatworks - a wooden boat building school founded by Brendan and his siblings - submitted and became stewards of the space.

The caretaking and renovations continue there today, where Islesford Boatworks teaches traditional wooden boatbuilding to all ages and works to serve the island, its people, and the working waterfront.