Provincetown Gets Fiber Optics for Morgan Visit

Courtesy of Mystic Seaport

Courtesy of Mystic Seaport

PROVINCETOWN – Local organizations are providing a much needed technology upgrade in advance of the upcoming visit of the historic 1841 whaleship Charles W. Morgan to Provincetown.

Cape Net and Open Cape have donated fiber optic broadband service to OceansLIVE, the production team who have been documenting and broadcasting parts of the Morgan’s journey.

The Charles W. Morgan is the last remaining wooden whaleship from America’s 19th century fleet. Its home port is Mystic Seaport.

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This summer it is sailing on its 38th voyage since it was first launched in the mid-19th century. Over the past two decades, the boat has been painstakingly restored at Mystic Seaport.

During its summer journey, the public will be able to board and tour the ship in New Bedford, as Massachusetts Maritime Academy and in Boston. In Provincetown, the public will not be able to board the vessel because there is not enough depth for the boat to come in to Macmillan Pier.

Nevertheless, the Provincetown part of the Charles Morgan’s journey will be noteworthy because it will sail out to the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary from July 11 to 13.

The new bandwidth provided will enable high-definition web broadcasts from the sanctuary. OceansLIVE needed higher bandwidth and better reliability than they have had in the past and fast response in setting up the technology in time for this week’s events off the coast of Provincetown.

Judy Sterling of Cape Net said they were able to quickly get service to both the Pilgrim Monument and the Provincetown Museum to help make the webcasts possible.

The technology upgrade will now allow for high definition web broadcasts documenting the Morgan’s upcoming visit to Stellwagen Bank.

Matthew Lawrence, Maritime Archeologist at Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, said, “Having the fiber optic connectivity is important. It’s very stable, very high bandwidth, so we can send a high-quality signal out to the world. The previous bandwidth out of Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum wasn’t there to support what we’re doing now.”

To get film footage of its journey, the Morgan is being accompanied by a second ship, the Roann, a restored wooden fishing vessel. Both ships will transmit their footage to Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum, now provisioned with fiber optic bandwidth.

OceansLIVE has set up a production studio in Provincetown Museum. From there, a production crew will edit the video and mix in other visuals and interviews, creating entire shows much like an evening newscast.

Each program will have different content highlighting the Morgan and her whaling heritage, as well as the importance of ocean protection through special places such as national marine sanctuaries.