The first iron sloop built in the United States Pioneer is the only surviving American iron-hulled sailing vessel. Built in 1885 by the Pioneer Iron Foundary in Chester, Pennsylvania, she sailed the Delaware River, hauling sand for use in the iron molding process. Ten years later Pioneer was converted to a schooner rig for ease of sail handling. In 1966, the then abandoned vessel was acquired and rebuilt by Russell Grinnell, Jr. of Gloucester, Massachusetts. In 1970 the fully restored schooner was donated to the South Street Seaport Museum. Today historic Pioneer serves as a vital education platform. Students of all ages can come on history and other curricular subjects during the hands-on program. Pioneer also offers corporate and private charters, Elderhostel day programs, and public sails.