The Boston Yacht Club was founded in 1866 by three Dartmouth alumni who sought a venue for yacht racing that would provide “that spirit of comradeship, of courtesy and chivalry, of sympathetic joy in a common sport”. 90 original members began the club, including the then 18 year old Nat Herreshoff. One year later, Herreshoff drafted the first sailing measurement rule that later became the basis for future handicap rating systems. In 1874 the first clubhouse was opened at City Point in South Boston, membership then numbering 250 with over 80 yachts. Through a series of club mergers, the Boston Yacht Club grew and, by 1910, the club operated from six different stations: Rowe’s Wharf in Boston, Hull, City Point in South Boston, Marblehead, Dorchester, and Five Islands in Sheepscot Bay, Maine. Today the club operates from a single station in Marblehead, with 500 members and 400 yachts flying the BYC burgee.
The BYC has a tradition of creating and supporting some of the finest sailing events found anywhere on the East Coast of North America. From the prestigious Marblehead-to-Halifax Ocean Race, to their recent forays into invitational team (Jackson Cup) and match (Marblehead Cup) racing. The BYC is also the organization from which The U. S. Power Squadron was founded. The club has a long history with power boating for recreation and safety.