The History of Crew
Rowing as a sport goes back quite a long way. It predates football, baseball, basketball, and most other sports that we think of today. It all likely began as a competition between the various boatmen and ferrymen providing services across the Thames River in London. The oldest race still in existence is the Doggett’s Coat and Badge race that dates to 1715. The first race in this country dates to before we were even a country, held in 1762 on the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia. Clubs developed, then college teams. By the 1830s the sport was quite popular. The Narragansett Boat Club is currently the oldest operating club in the United States, being continuously active since 1838.
Currently, rowing clubs exist throughout the US, and the world, with scholastic and college championships, in addition to national, world, and Olympic opportunities. We fall under the guidance and are a member of, USRowing, the governing body for the sport in the US. Locally, we are a member us the Eastern Virginia Scholastic Rowing Association (EVSRA) that pulls together clubs in our area for competitions.