Competitive rowing, or crew, has a long and storied history at Amherst College. The team got its start in the 1860s and soon emerged as one of the most powerful programs in the young world of collegiate rowing, winning a national championship in 1872. (The practice shell of that crew still hangs in Valentine Dining Hall.) Soon after winning that championship, however, the program dissolved. Amherst Crew reemerged, more or less in its present form, in 1948 as a result of the efforts of T. P. Plimpton ’50. After many years as a varsity team within the athletic department, the program transitioned to club status in the early 1990s.
Today, Amherst rowing is one of the premier small programs in the northeast. We compete primarily in coxed fours—each boat holds four rowers and one coxswain—both at our home course on the Connecticut River and at major regattas such as the Head of the Charles, the New England Rowing Championships, and the Dad Vail Regatta. We race against—and often defeat—Division III varsity crews in addition to other club teams.
Most of our rowers and coxswains had no experience in the sport before arriving at Amherst. Our athletic and personal backgrounds are varied, but we share a common purpose: to work hard and win races. If you would like to join in that commitment, or just want to learn more about the team, please visit our recruitment page.