Since we have been having some fun with Higgin’s Speedboats we are getting some fun stories in. They do have a special appeal for many, myself included. Now that son lives in New Orleans I have an itch.. Oh boy. Well fellow Woody Boater George Emmanuel sent us in this fun Barn find story. Take it away George… Wait, bring it up here!
Over 20 years ago I spotted a Higgins in a shed here in Gainesville and the owner was an old-time Gainesville family person who knew my father-in-law. So I contacted him to see if he’d sell the boat and as usual the answer was “no”—-I’m going to fix it up someday. Well, I think all of us have heard that and know damn well that ain’t gonna happen. Every time I’d run into Jack, the owner, I’d ask the same question and every time the answer was the same, “George, it’s not for sale”.
About 4 years ago I ran into Jack at his favorite breakfast shop and approached him. “Jack, will you sell me the boat” and he looked at me and said, “No,—I’m going to give it to you”! His wife looked at me and said I’d better go get it before he changes his mind. There was a condition attached to it and that was if I did sell it I had to make a significant contribution to a wartime museum in his name and I agreed. We had to drag the trailer from under the shed as things were packed so tight we couldn’t get to the tires to see if they could be pumped up.
Supposedly it is a 1948 and I located the son of the original purchaser who sold it to Jack. His story was his dad after the war drove to New Orleans and bought the boat at the factory. They have some old family pictures which I’ve not been able to get and make copies of yet.
It is all original and has yellow linoleum which would be pretty hard to find I suspect. The boat is on my list as I’ve just finished my ’55 17’ Sportsman.