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Legacy

The story of how one man's dream of a simpler time became a reality.

1932
Robert Douglas is born in Chicago, and spends his childhood summers escaping the hustle and bustle of the city at his parents' summer home in West Chop. He spends his summer days watching the Vineyard ferries traversing the waters between the island and the mainland from his perch aboard his 15-foot sailboat.

1956
Captain Robert Douglas joins the Air Force, and flies his last mission as a jet fighter pilot two years later in 1958. After ejecting from a malfunctioning jet, the Captain walks away from the noise and trappings of the 20th century and moved towards the life that would become his legacy.

1956
Captain Robert Douglas joins the Air Force, and flies his last mission as a jet fighter pilot two years later in 1958. After ejecting from a malfunctioning jet, the Captain walks away from the noise and trappings of the 20th century and moved towards the life that would become his legacy.

1960
Captain Douglas makes a vessel for himself, using early construction techniques and materials wherever possible. The Captain christens his new topsail schooner "The Shenandoah", and brings her to her new home on the Vineyard.

1967
The Captain brings a black lab/boxer mix aboard and names her "Black Dog" after the character in Robert Lewis Stevenson's "Treasure Island". The man, the boat, and the dog are nearly inseparable.

1967
The Captain brings a black lab/boxer mix aboard and names her "Black Dog" after the character in Robert Lewis Stevenson's "Treasure Island". The man, the boat, and the dog are nearly inseparable.

1968
The Captain purchases an old seaside inn in Vineyard Haven, where he and the dog play host to sailors from all over the world. They sit by the fire, sharing drinks and stories. Summers are busy, winters are lonely.

1971
After dreaming of a place that Vineyarders could enjoy year-round, the Captain builds the Black Dog Tavern. The Tavern opens its doors on New Year's Day, and ever since, folks have flocked to its tables to enjoy the perfect chowder and a cozy seat by the fireplace.

1971
After dreaming of a place that Vineyarders could enjoy year-round, the Captain builds the Black Dog Tavern. The Tavern opens its doors on New Year's Day, and ever since, folks have flocked to its tables to enjoy the perfect chowder and a cozy seat by the fireplace.

Out of one sailing Captain’s love for the sea, his island home, and of course, his dog, The Black Dog brand was born.



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