Zac McDorrWhen the schooner Wyoming was launched in Bath in 1909, it was declared the biggest wooden vessel in history. Those with a Biblical point of view might argue that Noah’s Ark was bigger. Let’s see how they stack up.

The Wyoming was 450-feet long and 50-feet wide. The Ark is described as 300 cubits long by 50 cubits wide. The length of a cubit varied by culture, but the best guess is that the Ark was approximately 450 feet long … the exact length of the Wyoming!

The Wyoming was the largest wooden sailing ship ever built, unless you take a Biblical point of view. The Wyoming provided by Zac McDorr from

Unfortunately for the Wyoming, her length was measured from the tip of the jib-boom to the tip of the spanker-boom. The actual length of the hull was only 329 feet, more than 100 feet shorter than the Ark. At 75-feet wide, the Ark was 50 percent wider than the Wyoming, as well.

The experience of the Wyoming shows what a challenge the eight people on the Ark would have faced. The flexibility of wood made the long hull of the Wyoming twist and hog in the slightest seas. This caused separation between the hull planks that no caulking could ever fully seal, so the ship had to be pumped out constantly during its 14-year career. Even 300 tons of iron braces could not solve this problem.

How the people on the Ark dealt with this issue is unknown, especially as they were so busy taking care of animals.
The task of building the ships was impressive in both cases. The Wyoming contained approximately 3,100 tons of pine and oak timber. A recent reproduction of the Ark contains 3.1 million board feet of lumber.

While a large crew at Percy and Small Shipyard built the Wyoming in less than nine months, it took Noah around 100 years to build the Ark. Not bad, considering his 8-person crew and the fact that he was pushing 500 from the wrong side.