1ELAINE B.,Brooklyn, NY – 1953 The "ELAINE B" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1953. Captain Izzie Bauman's "ELAINE B" was built by Ernest Fiedler in 1940 at Brooklyn, NY. She was later owned by Captain Mike Scarpati Jr. and was later sold to Captain Stan Zagleski Sr. who continued to operate her from Highlands, NJ. She last sailed from Elizabeth, New Jersey as the "SUSAN" and has since been dismantled.
2DOLLSON, Brooklyn, NY – 1953 Captain Adam Doll's "DOLLSON" is shown here as she heads out of Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY for a day of fishing circa 1953. Built in 1943 at Honolulu, HI as the US Navy Launch 19485, she was named the "HELEN CATHERINE" before becoming the "DOLLSON".
3DOROTHY B, Brooklyn, NY – 1953 Captain Frank Bradshaw's "DOROTHY B" is shown departing Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY for a day of deep sea fishing circa 1953. She was built in 1912 at Brooklyn, NY, and originally sailed from Sheepshead Bay as Captain Anton 'Tony' Lundy's "R.C. LUNDY".
4FLASH KING, Highlands, NJ – 1953 The "FLASH KING" from Johnny's Landing, Highlands, NJ circa 1953. Built in 1949 by Peterson Boatyard at Great Kills, Staten Island, NY, she was originally named the "SUNBEAM III". The fare for a six-hour trip in 1953 cost $2.50. Photo courtesy of Captain John Bogan Jr.
5NAUTILUS II, Brooklyn, NY – 1953 The "NAUTILUS II" is shown here returning to Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1953. She sailed from Pier 7 under the command of Captain Frank Stefano. The "NAUTILUS II" was built in 1929 at Gerritsen Beach, NY. She sailed under the command of Captain Joe Stefano until he died in 1933 and his son Frank took over the helm. Later, she was sold to Captain Tom De Fina who continued to sail her from Sheepshead Bay. In 1969, she was sold to Captain Franklin Hammer Jr. who renamed her as the "WHITBY". Subsequently, she would be the last vessel to sail under the "WHITBY" name from Sheepshead Bay.
6RAINBOW, Brooklyn, NY – 1953 Captain Jim Stamos' "RAINBOW" heads out of Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY for a day of fishing circa 1953. The vessel was built in 1942 at Miami, FL as the World War II Air Sea Rescue (ASR) vessel "AVR-C-9442". In 1952, she was purchased by her night Captain Tony Franklin, who continued to sail her from Sheepshead Bay. In 1979, Captain Fred Ardolino purchased the "RAINBOW" and also sailed her from Sheepshead Bay.
7SEA FOAM III, Atlantic City, NJ – 1953 Captain Archie Brown's "SEA FOAM III" from Atlantic City, NJ. She was built in 1952 at Bena, VA. In 1963, she was sold to Captain Tony Garbacki who relocated her to Barnegat Light, NJ as his "SEA QUEEN". She would later sail as the "CAPT. BOB FISCHER" and last sailed as the "SONNIE W" from Portland, ME. She was dropped from documentation in 1987 and her present fate is unknown.
8SHAMROCK, Point Pleasant Beach, NJ – 1953 The Bogan family celebrates the hull launch of their new "SHAMROCK" at the Van Sant Boat Yard, Atlantic City, NJ in 1953. Pictured from right to left are Captain Jack Bogan, his wife, Elsie, his sister Mildred Birdsall and her husband James, son Bob Bogan Sr., nephew John Grady Sr. and James Goodwin, a good customer. Captain Jack sailed the "SHAMROCK" from Point Pleasant Beach, NJ and in 1971, Captain Bob Pennington bought the boat and she became his first "SEA DEVIL". Photo courtesy of Captain John Bogan Jr.
9SPRAY II, Belmar, NJ – 1953 The "SPRAY II" from Belmar, NJ circa 1953. Captain Pete Saro Sr. operated the "SPRAY II" when this picture was taken. She was built in 1914 at Brooklyn, NY as Captain John Michaels' "AMERICA" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY. In 1948, Captain Pete Saro Sr. purchased her and moved her to Belmar, NJ. In 1961, Captain Fred Kern purchased the "SPRAY II" and continued to sail her from Belmar, NJ under the same name.
Many Belmar, NJ party fishing boats had neon advertising signs in the 1950’s up until the late 1960’s including the "SPRAY II" (it’s above the pilothouse in the picture), the "CHIEF II", the "BOBBY II", the "GERTRUDE H", the "LENNY", the "MISS BELMAR", the "OPTIMIST" and the "SEA JET". The docks at Belmar must have been a remarkable sight at night back then. Photo courtesy of Captain Fred Kern.
10TAMPA II, Brooklyn, NY – 1953 The "TAMPA II" was built in 1929 at Gerrittsen Beach, Brooklyn, NY as Captain Jack Weidner's "PIONEER II" and sailed from Canarsie, Brooklyn. The vessel to the stern of the "TAMPA II" is the "ELAINE" (she later become the original "JET" from Sheepshead Bay.) Photo courtesy of Captain John Bogan Jr.
11TAMPA II, Brooklyn, NY – 1953 This 1953 photo of the stern section of the "TAMPA II" nicely depicts the party boats of the era by displaying the round stern, dry exhaust, the doors leading to the below decks cabin, and the aft deck layout. Photo courtesy of Captain John Bogan Jr.
12WHITBY, Brooklyn, NY – 1953 Captain Franklin Hammer's "WHITBY" from Pier 8, Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1953. Built in 1946 by Captain Sid Wilsey at Brooklyn, NY she was one of the few 45-foot party boats built with a steel hull. Photo courtesy of John Cairns.
13YANK, Point Pleasant, NJ – 1953 The "YANK" was built in 1942 at Mantis Yacht Co. in Camden, NJ as the World War II US Navy Sub Chaser "SC-635". She was later sold as surplus and became Captain Harry Tonk's "YANK" from Point Pleasant, NJ. She was sold in 1959 to Captain Henry Williams who sailed her as the "BRONX QUEEN" from (You guessed it!) the Bronx, NY. While named the "BRONX QUEEN", her owners changed several times during the next two decades. On December 20, 1989, she encountered rough seas while Whiting fishing near the entrance to Ambrose Channel. She lost a plank in her bow causing her to sink in less than twenty minutes. Photo courtesy of Rich Johnson.
14YANKEE SKIPPER, Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn NY – 1953 Captain Charlie Smallman's soon-to-be "YANKEE SKIPPER" is shown hauled out and in the process of being converted for party boat fishing in this 1953 photo. She was built in 1942 at Brooklyn, NY as the 83-foot US Coast Guard Cutter "CG-83373". Captain Smallman acquired her as surplus in 1953. In 1968, she moved to Freeport, NY and became Captain Jack Leven's "STARSTREAM". And in 1973, she became Captain Edwin Berlin's "CLAIRE III" from the Bronx, NY.
15YANKEE SKIPPER & SILVER STAR, Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn NY – 1953 This rare view depicts Captain Charles Smallman's recently converted "YANKEE SKIPPER" and Captain Dave "Laddie" Martin's newly acquired "SILVER STAR" tied up at the Flatbush piers in Brooklyn, NY shortly before joining the Sheepshead Bay fishing fleet. The "SILVER STAR" was built in 1942 as the 104-foot US Navy Air-Sea Rescue Boat "P-106" and was converted for party boat fishing after the end of World War II. She was named the "SILVER STAR" when purchased by Captain Martin and became his famous "ROCKET II".
16ANGLER, Captree, NY – 1954 Decorated with bunting, Captain John Gutman's "ANGLER" sits in her new slip at the recently opened Captree State Park Marina. Built in 1947 at Brooklyn, New York, the "ANGLER" was one of two known 45-foot party boats ever built with a steel hull. Her sister ship, the "WHITBY", sailed from Sheepshead Bay. Captain Gutman and his "ANGLER" relocated to Captree from Babylon, New York and she was one of the first party boats to secure a slip at the new Captree State Park Marina. Photo courtesy of Captain John Bogan Jr.
17ANNA M, Captree, NY – 1954 Captain George P. Mahr's original "ANNA M" from Captree, NY circa 1954. Built in 1942 at New Bedford, MA as the 38' World War II US Coast Guard picket boat CG-38640, Captains George Mahr Sr. and Jr. purchased the boat as surplus and rebuilt it for the party boat business. The father and son team did the conversion work using hand tools over a two-year period while both worked full time jobs. When Captree opened on June 12, 1954, the first three party boats to sail from there were the "TREBLA", skippered by Captain Al Rollman, the "CAPT. ERIC", operated by Eric Westerlind, and the "ANNA M". Photo Courtesy of George Mahr III.
18IDEAL I, Point Pleasant Beach, NJ – 1954 Captain Doug Macintosh’s "IDEAL I" from Point Pleasant Beach, NJ circa 1954. Her specialty was fishing for "Big Jersey Fluke", and plenty of them were boated aboard her throughout the 1950s and 1960s. She was built in 1946 at Brooklyn, NY as Captain Charlie Dodd's "OPTIMIST I" and was later purchased by Captain Macintosh. Photo courtesy of Captain John Bogan Jr.
19JERSEY, Brielle, NJ – 1954 The "JERSEY" from Brielle, NJ circa 1954. When this picture was taken, Captain Thomas Bogan was at the helm. Built in 1943, she originally was a World War II Higgins-built Patrol Torpedo Boat, the "PT-305". She was originally 78 feet in length, and US Coast Guard regulations at the time required vessels over 65 feet to sail with a captain and an engineer. In 1953, the Bogan family purchased the boat and shortened her to 64 feet 11 inches to circumvent the costly regulation. In 1963, she sailed for one season as Captain Bill Egerter 's "DAUNTLESS" from Point Pleasant Beach, NJ and in 1964 she was sold to Captain Joe Burns and became his "MAN O' WAR" from Point Pleasant, NJ. She is currently undergoing a full restoration at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, LA under her original name, "PT–305". Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.
20RIP, Wildwood, NJ – 1954 The "RIP" from Wildwoord, NJ circa 1954. She was built in 1939 at Camden, NJ as the "NAMANI". She sailed half-day fishing trips from Wildwood, NJ and was operated by Captain George Shober. She has since been dismantled.
21WILDWOOD II , Wildwood, NJ – 1954 Captain 'Jack' Blake's "WILDWOOD II" circa 1954. The "WILDWOOD II" was built in 1952 by Stowman Shipyards at Dorchester, NJ. She continued to sail from Wildwood, NJ until she was sold in 1983 and became the "CAPTAIN GARY II" and after that, she sailed as the "LAZY BONES II". She was dropped from documentation in 1995 and her present fate is unknown.
22CAPT. ERIC, Captree, NY – 1955 Captain Eric Westerlind's "CAPT. ERIC" as she returned to the dock in 1955. Mt. Desert Marine built the 46–foot "CAPT. ERIC" in 1954 at Somesville, ME. She sailed daily from Captree State Park and was one of the original vessels to sail from that port. The Mates hated the bar stool seats along the rails because they made it hard to swab the deck, but the customers simply loved them. Captain Eric Westerlind operated her until the early 1970's. Photo courtesy of Lee Westerlind.
23CHIEF, Brooklyn, NY – 1955 The partners, Captains Phil Wright and Sid Wilsey, bought this converted 110–foot World War II Sub Chaser to Sheepshead Bay in 1948. Built in 1942 at Stamford, CT as the "SC-1355", she sailed as the "CHIEF" every day at 10:00 AM from Pier 6. Later sold to the partners of Harold Wrege (Captain) and John and Joe Ecock (Mates), this vessel catered to customers who arrived at Sheepshead Bay by subway. Sold again in 1981, she is currently sailing from Baltimore, MD as the tour boat "MOUNT INDEPENDENCE". Photo courtesy of Captain John Bogan Jr.
24CLAIRE II, Bronx New York – 1955 Captain Howie and Captain Edwin Berlin's "CLAIRE II" from the Bronx, New York. She was built in 1944 at Miami, Florida as the US Navy Air Sea Rescue Vessel "AVR-C-26246". In 1949, she became Captain George Sinn's "MAROLYN" from Wildwood, NJ and was then sold to the Berlin brothers in 1955. She was remodeled in 1964 and had a deckhouse and topside wheelhouse added. She remained in the Claire Fleet sailing from the Bronx until she was condemned in 1982.
25LENNY, Belmar, NJ – 1955 The "LENNY" from Belmar Marine Basin, Belmar, NJ circa 1955. She was built in 1944 at Miami, FL as the US Navy Air-Sea Rescue boat "C-36256". Captain Henry Leonard Sr. purchased her in 1952 and converted her for party boat fishing. She was sold in 1970 and sailed as the "KING NEPTUNE II" from Massachusetts.
26LUCKY STAR, Atlantic City, NJ – 1955 Captain Elwood Starn's "LUCKY STAR" sailing from Starn's Pier, Atlantic City, New Jersey. Built in 1954 at Bena, VA, she was sold in 1956 to Captain Charles Coney and became his "BIG DAY", which also sailed from Atlantic City, NJ. She later sailed as Captain Tony Garbacki's "BIG CHAMP" until 1962 when she sank off Harvey Cedars, NJ while on the way to an Atlantic City boatyard. Photo courtesy of Don Nyce.
27MAJESTIC I, Brooklyn, NY – 1955 The "MAJESTIC" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1955. Captain Joe Majestic owned and operated this sturdy 45 footer. His brother, John Majestic built her in 1946 at Brooklyn, NY. Like many of the Brooklyn-based party boats, she was a member of the Sheepshead Bay Boat Owners Association as indicated by the "S.B.B.O.A." placard on her wheelhouse. Captain Marty Haines Jr. purchased her in 1967 and he sailed her from Perth Amboy, NJ until 1972. She was then sold and relocated to Key Largo, FL where she continued to operate as a party boat and is currently sailing from Florida as the commercial hook-and-line fishing vessel "PIRATES LADY". Photo courtesy of John Cairns.
28MARGARET, Atlantic Beach, NY – 1955 The "MARGARET" was built in 1935 by Ernest Fiedler at the Bergen Beach Boatworks in Brooklyn, New York. She was owned and operated by Captain Christian Specht who sailed her from the Canarsie section of Brooklyn, NY before relocating her to Atlantic Beach, NY. Captain Christian's son Walter Specht Sr. later took over her helm. Captain Walter Sr. passed away in 1972 and she was sold in 1973 and became the "SEA LION". Her present fate is unknown. Photo courtesy of Christian Specht.
29MISS BELMAR, Belmar, NJ – 1955 Captain Dave Shinn's original party boat "MISS BELMAR" from Shark River, NJ circa 1955. She was built in 1943 at Bayonne, NJ as the World War II PT boat "PT–577". Formerly, she was the sightseeing boat "BIG FLAMINGO" from Wildwood, NJ. After her stint as the "MISS BELMAR", she was sold and sailed as Captain Gene DeVito's "CAPT. LOUIE" from Highlands, NJ.
30OPTIMIST II, Shark River, NJ – 1955 The "OPTIMIST II" from Shark River, NJ circa 1955. She was built in 1950 at Brooklyn, NY and while Captain Charlie Dodd owned the "OPTIMIST II", she was operated by Captain Jack Huntsinger.