Built in 1907, the Yankee transported immigrants to Ellis Island and served in both world wars.
Now docked in Staten Island, New York, its owners are renting out its bedrooms for $1,849 a month.
One of the rooms available for rent is the engine room.
Docked off Staten Island, New York City, the Yankee ferry is "one of the most historically significant ships in the United States," according to its owners.
The Yankee ferry served in both world wars, took immigrants to Ellis Island, and was the longest-operating commercial passenger vessel in the US, among its many accolades. Now the ferry — which was placed on the National Registry of Historic Places in 1992 — is owned by artists Victoria MacKenzie and Richard Childs.
According to the couple, Yankee is a "beacon of resiliency" and "one of the most historically significant ships in the United States."
"Yankee has cradled million of huddled masses, from newly arrived immigrants to and from Ellis Island, to American troops in World Wars I and II, to families dawning willow baskets and tennis rackets bound for island holidays," the couple wrote in a document recounting Yankee's history that they shared with Insider.
The couple is renting out bedrooms on the 150-foot ferry, offering rentals on a short-term and a long-term basis.
You can rent one of the bedrooms in the boat for $1,849 per month. Alternatively, guests can rent rooms on a nightly basis, for a minimum two-night stay. The fee for the first guest is $229, and the price drops for each additional guest.
The ship is pet-friendly, alcohol-free, smoke-free, and drug-free.
Interested parties can contact the owners through the listing on Facebook.
The Yankee started off as "the fanciest ferry boat of her ilk," according to MacKenzie. Its interior was covered in mohair velvet and mahogany.
"She's had several lives," MacKenzie said. "Her first life was as the fanciest ferry boat of her ilk."
After it was built in 1907, the boat was used to ferry passengers between Portland, Maine, and nearby islands.
"They used to take people out to catch the breezes, as they call it," she added.
The boat went on to serve in both world wars. It was renamed the Machigonne in World War I.
Yankee quickly lost its status as a "fancy" boat. "They stripped her down," MacKenzie said, and "took all the finery away."
It was acquired by the US Navy in 1917 and commissioned as the USS Machigonne in May 1918, according to NavSource Naval History. The boat carried men and supplies between Boston and Bumpkin Island, a training center for Navy recruits, during World War I.
"She had cannon guns," MacKenzie said. "She wasn't a fighting ship, but she had it for her own protection."
Ownership changed again over the following years, but the Navy acquired the boat again in February 1941. It served for five years, including as a ferry during World War II, before it was renamed the Yankee in 1947.
In between its work with the Navy, the boat played a key role in transporting immigrants to Ellis Island.
After the boat was sold to the US Immigration Service in 1921, it worked in New York Harbor, ferrying immigrants from their ships to Ellis Island for processing.
"Yankee would go to meet them out at sea and they would disembark the 'cheaper' customers to go to Ellis Island," MacKenzie said.
Once there, immigrants were screened for medical issues, given questionnaires, and documented in a registry before being granted access into the US.
"The men folk came over first, and worked really hard, and one by one [Yankee would] bring over different members of their families," MacKenzie said.
Ellis Island stopped operating in 1954 after it had served 12 million immigrants during its 62 years in operation.
After World War II, Yankee was once again used for leisure.
In the 1940s, Yankee carried passengers from the mainland of the US to its coastal islands.
"They called her the Daddy Boat, because she would bring the fathers out on the weekend," MacKenzie said.
Victoria MacKenzie and Richard Childs acquired the boat in 2001, and they initially intended to use it as an art studio.
A little over 20 years ago, the couple took a trip to Ithaca, New York, where they ran into an old friend who told the couple he lived on a boat.
This immediately inspired MacKenzie to reimagine what a life in New York could entail.
"I said, 'Richard, if we can't afford to be in a building in New York, maybe we can be in the fringes of New York,'" she said.
They found Yankee in 2001.
"We came on board and it was a mess, and it was really awful," MacKenzie said. "We never intended to [live here]. We thought of it as just a place to work on our sculpture."
However, they were working on their art so much that they realized it made sense to live on the boat full-time.
"All of a sudden, one day, we looked at Yankee and thought, 'This is our sculpture. We need to work on Yankee.' And so that's what we did, we've committed ourselves to that," she said.
Now they're looking for people to join them in this one-of-a-kind floating home. The eccentric upper passenger deck is emblematic of their unique style.
The boat has 5,000 square feet of living space and 11 bedrooms. It also has communal areas, like this upper passenger deck, which features a dining table suspended from the ceiling, multiple couches, and hammocks.
"You have to love to use what's at hand," MacKenzie said. "Everything that we have here was on Yankee, or we dragged it in and used it."
The couple's creative style is reflected in the boat's main salon as well.
Passengers can relax and lounge in the ship's main salon, which is filled with unique decorative pieces, maps, and portraits.
Another seating area features a large decorative ball made of fabric, created by MacKenzie.
Her designs can be found all over the ferry.
Baskets hang from the ceiling of the full kitchen.
It's also filled with MacKenzie and Childs' creations and discoveries.
Passengers can see views of the calm water from the kitchen sink.
By nature of being on water, the ship provides fantastic views from every window.
Each bedroom on Yankee is unique.
However, this cozy room is not one of the bedrooms available for rent.
Above the bed, a painting of the couple and their daughter was repurposed as a canopy.
When the couple lived on the Upper East Side, the large painting fit on the walls of their high-ceilinged apartment. While Yankee's walls could not accommodate the painting, the couple found that its dimensions were similar to that of one of their beds, making it perfectly suited to be used as a canopy.
This bedroom, which features porthole windows, is one of the rooms available for rent.
They call this room the "Boat Girl/Boat Boy Cabin."
On the other side of the room, there's a set of bunk beds and more storage.
The room contains four beds in total, a writing desk, and storage.
Guests can also choose to sleep next to the ship's engine.
One of the rooms for rent is the engine room, which contains one bed.
Renters also have access to the ship's cargo deck.
MacKenzie is pictured in the cargo deck.
The walls of the cargo deck are covered in black-and-white photos detailing the ship's rich history.
At one point, the Yankee's cargo deck transported as many as 10 cars at once. Now the area serves as somewhat of a museum that honors the ship's past.
The suitcases on the cargo deck, which the couple uses for storage, resemble the ones immigrants brought to Ellis Island.
MacKenzie and Childs picked up these old suitcases in nearby Hoboken, New Jersey.
The ship is also home to some of the couple's quirky designs, such as a wreath of shells.
"We always saved any shellfish that we ate," MacKenzie explained.
MacKenzie turned broken shards of glass into a dangling piece of art that hangs on one of the kitchen's windows.
These decorative curtains reflect the light that comes in through the window.
Along with new designs the couple adds to Yankee, the ferry also features various beloved artifacts from their past.
This puppet belonged to Childs when he was younger, and it now hangs above the couple's bed.
Renters also have access to the outside deck when the weather permits.
To rent out a room on the historic, one-of-a-kind ship, you can contact MacKenzie and Childs via listing on Facebook.
Read the original article on Insider