I Hear Invoices From The Past

40 ft cabin cruiser for $3,626. Note the plans. I LOVE IT. In todays dollars that would be around $40,000 For a 40 ft Cabin Cruiser!

Yesterday George came by the railway with another scrap book. OH HECK YA! It was for a story being done on Chesapeake Bay boat builders, and this scrap book was chocked full of old receipts.

This is a different Cabin Cruiser but roughly the same. This is HYAWATHA. 1965

It’s fascinating to me to see how commerce was done, and the small call outs on a bill, which meant that was something to brag about. Anyway, I digress into the depths of my personal rabbit holes of the importance of time, and that history is truly defined by the details, not the broad strokes. See? You just want pics. so here are some pics. OH! And I have more, so you better like them. It’s gonna be a long winter.

38 ft boat for $1,400, roughly $15,000 today, this feels like a simpler work boat

ZEPHYR – Note the Electric Planer and resaw. The Railway was the first on the Bay to have Electricity.

The final product

Competent carpenters! No SHIP! S.O. Butler is Samual and son is Georges dad. 1952

$600 for a 24 boat. This would have been a simple workboat. $6,000 ish in todays money. Go and try and find a boat for 6K today.. Go on? I will wait.

Thanks for indulging me. Today I am going to work/play by boat, hand lettering, and gonna get all Amish about life today. Right after I push PUBLISH! Okay and check my phone.

9 replies
  1. Troy in ANE
    Troy in ANE says:

    That first invoice is dated on our anniversary (July 31) unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) neither of us was alive in 1956.

  2. John Rothert
    John Rothert says:

    Ok, for those of us who WERE ALIVE in 55….these are fond memory pics. I personally recall all those boats.
    One invoice to Dr. Stuart Mcguire…he was a friend and customer of my Father.

    Great stuff…I will enjoy the winter with more of these.
    The Wings and Wheels and Keels show was very good with lots of cars and planes and boats on a perfect Va. Day.
    John in Va. just back from GOING BOATING!

  3. Don Palmer
    Don Palmer says:

    You mention that in todays dollars, a 40′ cabin cruiser would be $40,000….
    The 24′ wake surf boats today on the lake are going for a quarter of a million dollars! I shake my head in disbelief at how many of them there are! And yes, they are hard on the docks! No one follows the rules about 200 feet from the shore.

  4. Philip Andrew
    Philip Andrew says:

    Fascinating and wonderful scraps of history. Hand written on carbon copy paper to one day be seen via a digital file in every corner of the world.

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