The Dory Shop

Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada | (902) 640-3005 |

Stories from the The Dory Shop

A heartwarming dory story

This may come as a shock to some of you but The Dory Shop is really not what you’d call a huge money-maker. Some years are good, others less than good but we trundle along producing quality boats and trusting our commitment to craftsmanship and tradition will see us through. It’s worked for 90-plus years.

What makes a huge difference, especially when times are lean, are the people we meet along the way. At risk of sounding like a sentimental old fool, and not the crusty waterfront broad I pretend to be (ha!), I have just felt so blessed by the way people so willingly share the stories that bring them to our boats. And there is always a story. People just don’t choose a dory by accident.

The latest one to touch my heart is connected to a Handline dory built here last spring and shipped to Scituate, Massachusetts. It was purchased by a man as a gift for his father. The father had ‘gone mossing’ – that is, he’d raked Irish moss from a dory as a young man – and in his advancing age he began to think about those times a lot and even to dream about them.

The dory was delivered to Gloucester in July aboard the Barque Picton Castle, adding another layer to the boat’s story. She was later launched on Scituate harbour. We recently received this note from the client.

He writes, “The last one is a shot of my father reveling in the beauty of this dory. He was so blown away by this boat. Other than the colors, it is identical to the ones that he grew up with in his mossing career. He spent hours in the thing just re-acquainting himself with his past rowing prowess. I watched him and there truly is an art to rowing. I admit that I got just as much fun out of seeing his reaction to the boat as I did rowing it myself.”

See what I mean?

Dory Plug
The Dory Shop
Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada