1ELMAR III, Brooklyn, NY – 1935 The "ELMAR III" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY with Captain Gus Rau circa 1935. The "ELMAR III" was a converted World War I US Navy Subchaser (SC–186). She was built in 1917 at Upper Nyack, NY.
2FISHER, Brooklyn, NY – 1935 The "FISHER" sailed from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY under the command of Captain Frank Schwarzbach. She was built specifically for party boat fishing in 1927 at Brooklyn, NY. In 1949, she was sold to Captain Jackie Michaels and she continued to sail from Sheepshead Bay as his "AMERICA". She later sailed for one season as Captain Walter Zirkle's "BROOKLYN" and later as Captains 'Red' Tanfield and Gerry Nappi's "CAPT. RED". Postcard courtesy of Captain Tony 'Mo' Barbato.
3FLYING D II, Brooklyn, NY – 1935 The "FLYING D II" from Pier 2, Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1935. Captain Frank 'Lupo' Knuth operated the "FLYING D II". Many years later, she became Captain Gary Fagan's "BLUEFIN" from Belmar, NJ. Ernest Fiedler built the "FLYING D II" in 1934 at Brooklyn, NY and she is a good example of the 45-foot party boats he made. Fiedler also built the "PILOT II", the "MARGARET", the "WHITE EAGLE", the "ELAINE-B" and the "JOVIAL" (Fiedler built all of these boats in Brooklyn and all of them sailed from Sheepshead Bay.)
4GIRALDA, Brooklyn, NY – 1935 Captain Dave Martin's "GIRALDA" from Pier 8, Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1935. The "GIRALDA" originally was a luxury yacht that Captain Martin purchased in 1914 and converted into a party fishing boat.
Captain Martin billed himself as the "Pioneer of Off Shores Wrecks" and the marketing shtick was as follows... "Do you want a real good deep sea fishing and a healthful sail? Then try a trip with us now. More fish caught than in years. Ladies are also having wonderful catches and Thrills Galore. Fare including bait is $2.50. Sails daily at 7:45 AM and 4:30 AM Sunday." Hmm, makes you wonder what sort of thrills the ladies got.
5MIRAMAR, Brooklyn, NY – 1935 Captain Joe Ecock’s "MIRAMAR" from Pier 1, Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1935. Built in 1910, she was a 100-foot, steel hulled, converted steam yacht.
6MONTAUK, Montauk, NY – 1935 A 1935 advertisement for the party boat "MONTAUK" owned and operated by Captain Samuel Edwards. The "MONTAUK" was built in 1919 at Bayonne, NJ as the private yacht "MANCONOCH". She first sailed as a party boat from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY in 1924 before being sold to Captain Edwards who relocated her to the eastern tip of Long Island.
7NAUTILUS II, Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn – 1935 This 1935 advertising card shows Captain Tom De Fina's "NAUTILUS II" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY. She was built in 1929 at Gerritsen Beach, Brooklyn, NY and sailed under the command of Captain Joe Stefano until he died in 1933 when 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 who renamed her as the "WHITBY". As it turned out, she was the last vessel to sail from Sheepshead Bay under the "WHITBY" name.
8R.C. LUNDY, Brooklyn, NY – 1935 The "R.C. LUNDY" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1935. The "R.C. LUNDY" was built in 1912 at Brooklyn, NY and was originally owned and operated by Captain Anton 'Tony' Lundy, who was formerly the Captain of the "NIMBUS". In 1947, she sailed with hired Captain George Gunnerson at the helm. In 1949, Captain Joseph Bradshaw purchased her and she became his "DOROTHY B" from Sheepshead Bay. Postcard courtesy of Captain Tony 'Mo' Barbato.
9SEA PIGEON II, Brooklyn, NY – 1935 This 1935 advertising postcard for the "SEA PIGEON II" features a cameo inset of Captain 'Lucky' Steve Onody. Built in 1934 at the Scott McBurney Boat Yard, Brooklyn, NY, the "SEA PIGEON II" sailed from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY. In 1945, Captain Onody sold the "SEA PIGEON II" to Captain 'Willy' Sutherland, who later sold the boat to Captain 'Heckey' Sackstein. In 1967, Captain Sackstein sold her to Captain Irving Moss who renamed her "DIXIE" also from Sheepshead Bay.
10SYLPH, Brooklyn, NY – 1935 The coal-fired steamer "SYLPH" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1935. Like the "GIRALDA" and the "SACHEM", she was a converted luxury yacht. Have fuel will travel… she fished from Fire Island, NY to Barnegat, NJ.
Originally purchased by the US Navy in June 1898 from her builder, John Roach & Co., Chester, PA, she was commissioned as a presidential yacht on August 18, 1898 at the Norfolk Navy Yard. She served in this capacity for Presidents McKinley (1898-1901), Roosevelt (1901-1909), Taft (1909-1913) and Wilson (1913-1921). In 1921, the Navy re-designated her as Patrol Yacht PY-5 and she sailed on the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers. In 1925, she was permanently moored at the Washington Navy Yard, where she remained until her decommissioning in April 1929.
Frank B. Clair of Brooklyn, New York purchased her in November 1929 (Mr. Clair was reportedly an ex-bootlegger.) Mr. Clair and his partner Captain John Nugent converted her into a party fishing boat and operated her from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY. In 1935, her boiler failed and she was re-powered with a 400 HP Worthington diesel engine. In addition, during 1935, Jeremiah 'Jerry' Driscoll purchased Mr. Clair’s share of the business.
The "SYLPH" fished from Sheepshead Bay until April 1939, when she changed her business and ran a ferry service from Sea Gate, Brooklyn to the Battery in Manhattan. Alas, in 1941, her owners defaulted on the mortgage held by the Worthington Diesel Company and they took possession of the vessel.
11VELOCITY, Brooklyn, New York – 1935 Captain Frank Baumann's "VELOCITY" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1935. Built 1895 at New York, NY as the yacht "RAMBLER", it was later named the "ANNETTE" before becoming the "VELOCITY" in 1907. She first operated as a party boat in 1912 sailing from Messenger's Pier at Canarsie, Brooklyn under the command of Captain Samuel Leonard. In 1914, Captain Bill Stephens purchased the "VELOCITY" and continued to sail her from Messenger's Pier until relocating to the vessel to Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn in 1919. In May 1927, Captain Stephens purchased the luxury yacht "AU REVIOR" as his new vessel and Captain Frank Baumann purchased the "VELOCITY".
The photograph was taken by Staten Islander Percy Loomis Sperr (1890-1964), who was known as the "Official Photographer for the City of New York." Beginning in 1924, he combed the five boroughs, capturing scenes of the city's people, buildings, neighborhoods and waterfronts. He created more than 30,000 photographs, and his works comprise an amazingly detailed portrait of the City from 1924 through the early 1940s.
12ALERT, Island Park, NY – 1936 A postcard for Captain George Wilson’s "ALERT" sailing from Wilson’s Dock, Island Park, NY circa 1936. Captain Wilson was one of the pioneers of party boat fishing in the area. He began operating party boats in 1913 when he was the Captain of the "ROSABELL", also from Island Park. The "ALERT" was built in 1913 at Tottenville, Staten Island and was previously owned by Jay Carman.
13ANNA M, Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY – 1936 The "ANNA M" sailed from Pier 1 at Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY under the command of Captain Charlie Mutz. She was built in 1903 at San Francisco, CA as the Army Quartermaster's launch "ALCATRAZ". In 1937, she was sold to Captain Frederick Black who relocated her to Elizabeth, New Jersey where she continued to sail as the "ANNA M" until being dismantled in 1956.
14BARNACLE BILL, Lindenhurst, NY – 1936 The then new party boat "BARNACLE BILL" returns to Lindenhurst, Long Island, NY after a daily fishing trip in 1936. The boat was built in 1936 at Brookhaven, NY and was owned and operated by Captain Gaston 'Gus' Bizet. In 1956, Captain George Maas purchased the "BARNACLE BILL" and continued to from the same port. The boat changed ownership several times while sailing from Lindenhurst until 1980, when Captain William Waller purchased the boat and moved it to Delray Beach, Florida. Her present fate is unknown.
15EFFORT, Sheepshead Bay, NY – 1936 Captain Jacob Rickert's "EFFORT" is shown at the newly rebuilt piers in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1936. She was built in 1922 at Brooklyn, NY and was originally owned by Captain Fred Wrege. (Captain Wrege sold her in 1923 to make way for his new "EFFORT II".) The new piers shown in this photo replaced the original ones that were built around 1909.
16ELSIE III, Brooklyn, NY – 1936 Captain Fred Plucker's "ELSIE III" from the Canarsie section of Brooklyn, NY circa 1936. She was built in 1917 at City Island, NY as the US Navy Launch "C-861". The "ELSIE III" sailed from Canarsie until 1961 when she was dropped from documentation.
17EMMA R, Wildwood, NJ – 1936 The 65-foot twin-screw steamer "EMMA R" from Cold Spring Harbor in Wildwood, NJ circa 1936. Yet another boat that waited for the "Fisherman's Special" train leaving Market Street Wharf, Philadelphia, PA. Captain Theodore Riedel's boat had a "Private Restroom for Ladies" and the fare was a whopping $2.00.
18FLYING CLOUD II, Brooklyn, NY – 1936 The "FLYING CLOUD II" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1936. Built in 1901, she sailed from Pier 2 under the command of Captain Henry Gunther Jr. She was powered by a four-cylinder Atlas diesel engine that produced her trademark 'chugging' sound. In 1960, Captain Fred Bird purchased the boat and moved her to Montauk, NY.
19MARY R, Brooklyn, NY – 1936 The "MARY R" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1936. Ernest Fiedler of Bergen Beach Boat Works, Brooklyn, NY built her in 1932. At the time, Captains Frank Bauman and John Regan owned and operated the boat. She later went on to sail as the charter boat "KATIE M".
20NAUTILUS, Brooklyn, NY – 1936 The "NAUTILUS" was one of the oldest vessels in the fleet at Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY. She was built in 1883 and her original owners are unknown. In 1936, she was owned and operated by Captain Sparta 'Sparks' Telesca who would later sell her to Captain Bob Wood. Postcard courtesy of Captain Tony 'Mo' Barbato.
21PIONEER II, Brooklyn, NY – 1936 The "PIONEER II" from Pier 2, Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY and skippered by Captain Jack Weidner circa 1936. She was built in 1929. In 1955, she became Captain Rocky Becker's "TAMPA II" and sailed from Pier 2 at Sheepshead Bay. She later became Captain Joe Vialotti's "JOVIAL II", also from Sheepshead Bay.
22TAMBO III, Brooklyn, NY – 1936 Captain John 'Candy' Keefe's "TAMBO III" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY is seen here at her pier on Monday, May 4, 1936, the day after she participated in the rescue of the sinking party boat "MJR III".
On Sunday, May 3, 1936, there was a dense fog, but many vessels of the Sheepshead Bay party boat fleet were anchored and bottom fishing on the 'Subway Rocks' fishing grounds. At approximately 1:45 PM the freighter "ANGELINA" steamed through the party boat fleet and came within feet of the "TAMBO III" before striking Captain Frank Polacek's "MJR III" and shearing off her stern. Many of the "MJR III" anglers were tossed into the chilly water. Captain John 'Candy' Keefe and the crew of the "TAMBO III" quickly took action and rescued two people from the water and recovered the body of the only person to perish in the collision. The "TAMBO III" quickly returned to her pier at Sheepshead Bay to get the injured anglers to aid. Captain Polacek and the remaining passengers of the "MJR III" were taken aboard other party boats in the fleet as the crippled and badly damaged vessel sank.
In this "day after" press photo, Captain Candy is at the rail on the left and in the background you can just make out a curious Captain Jake Martin peeking out of a wheelhouse window of the "SACHEM". Later that same year, Captain Candy moved the "TAMBO III" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn to Brielle, New Jersey.
23USONA, Bronx, New York – 1936 The "USONA" sailed from the Bronx, New York and is seen here in 1936 heading up the East River as she approaches the Harlem River off Hallets Point. The Triborough Bridge and the Hell Gate Railroad Bridge can be seen in the background. At the time, the "USONA" was skippered by Captain Albert Schneider and Captain John Schramn. She was built in 1917 by the Gibbs Gas Engine Company at Jacksonville, FL as a World War I US Navy Subchaser. In 1942, she returned to military service when she was designated as the navy coastal patrol vessel "YP-191". She later sailed as the "SEA QUEEN III" from City Island, Bronx, NY and then sailed from the 23rd Street Pier in Manhattan until 1978. Her final fate is unknown. BTW - USONA is an acronym of the United States of North America, a 19th-century name for the United States of America.
24A.R. MYERS, Point Pleasant, NJ – 1937 The "A.R. MYERS" was one of the earliest party boats sailing from Point Pleasant, NJ. She was built in 1928 at Chincoteague, VA and was skippered by her namesake, Captain Arthur Myers. She later sailed as Captain Dick Shields' "SHARK" from Great Kills, Staten Island NY, before being sold to Captain Ray Messemer, who returned her to Point Pleasant, NJ as the "REALM". Photo courtesy of Captain John Bogan Jr.
25EFFORT II, Brooklyn, NY – 1937 Captain Sid Wilsey's "EFFORT II" at Pier 5, Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY in 1937. In the background are the "BROOKLYN", "AU REVOIR" and the "GLORY". Built in 1923 at Brooklyn, NY, her first owner was Captain Fred Wrege. In 1930, Captain Wrege sold the "EFFORT II" to Captain Charlie Freiberger after purchasing a World War I Subchaser and converting her for fishing as his "EFFORT III".
In 1935, Captain Sid Wilsey purchased the "EFFORT II" and operated her until the federal government appropriated her for duty as a costal patrol vessel during World War II. When the boat was returned to Captain Wilsey at the end of the war, he sold her to Captain 'Sparks' Telesca who renamed her "ATOMIC". She continued to sail from Sheepshead Bay and was eventually purchased by Captain Joe Miller.
26ESCORT, Brielle, NJ – 1937 The "ESCORT" from Manasquan River Yacht Basin, Brielle, NJ circa 1937. Captain John Bogan Jr. was the original operator of the "ESCORT". Ernest Fiedler built this 46’ boat in 1936 at Brooklyn NY. Later, she was operated by Captains Stanley Williams, John Bogan III and Kurt Pretshnur. She was eventually sold and became Captain Frank D’Amato’s "FADA" from Brielle, NJ. Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.
27EVELYN, Brooklyn, NY – 1937 The "EVELYN" from Pier 2, Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY circa 1937. This boat was for early birds; she sailed at 4:30 AM daily. She was originally named the "LINTA", a steam yacht built in 1892 at Nyack, NY. Captain Jacob 'Jake' Martin purchased her in 1911 and converted her for party boat fishing; she first sailed from the "Martin Brothers Dock" at Sheepshead Bay. She was sold to Captain Ted Alexander in 1935, and she continued to operate from Sheepshead Bay. When the federal government appropriated Captain Martin's "SACHEM" at the start of World War II, he repurchased the "EVELYN" as a replacement until the end of the war.
28GIRALDA, Brooklyn, NY – 1937 Another picture of Captain Dave Martin's "GIRALDA" from a postcard dated 1937. Like the postcard says "Amateurs will be shown how to rig, bait, etc." Hmm, how about how to fish? The "GIRALDA" sailed from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY.
29RELIABLE II, Elizabeth, NJ – 1937 The "RELIABLE II" was one of two converted World War I Sub Chasers owned by Captain Percy Black (the other was the "RELIABLE"). The "RELIABLE II" was built in 1918 at New York, NY as one of approximately a hundred sub chasers the United States made for France during World War I. This vessel was one of the few that were not delivered since the war was nearing its conclusion. She was sold as surplus at the end of the war and first wore the civilian name "MODESTY".
As for the first "RELIABLE", she was built in 1917 at New Orleans, LA as the US Navy Sub Chaser "SC-1", the very first Sub Chaser ever commissioned by the United States Navy. She was later sold as surplus to Captain Edward Baletti, who afterwards sold it to his First Mate at the time, Percy Black.
30ROSE R II, Brooklyn, NY – 1937 The party boat "ROSE R II" circa 1937. Captain Dick Person sailed her from Stahle's Pier in Canarsie, Brooklyn, NY. The caption on the bottom of the picture says, "Hungry crowd awaits unloading of 1st boat in from annual gefilte fish tourney. Canarsie shore." Built in 1913 at Patchogue, NY for Captain Gus Rau, the "ROSE R II" had a whopping 100-horsepower engine.