Travel Through Time One Page At A Time.

Moto boat 18

The year and month my boat was delivered to the family

I will admit this may be a bit compulsive. But for me I want to immerse myself in everything about my Woody Boat. Zippers included. Since I did not grow up in 1948, just three years after the end of World War II and right before the epic 1950s, I want to get a feel for what sort of life was being lived when WECATCHEM was built and sold. 1948 to be specific in this case.

Motor boat 18

A cool 1948 Ventnor. This would have been competition for Chris Craft

Ya ya, But to understand any art of the day, you must understand all the tings that drove that art, and in the case of a 1948 boat. How was it marketed, what was being said about it. What was the competition? What was the fashion of the day, the brands being used? Pettit was around big time with huge ads.

Motor boat 10

Paragon transmissions had a huge ongoing campaign. All of it. I was lucky enough to score a deal on all the issues from 1947 through the end of 1948. And reading them is a very strange thing.

Motor boat 12

Make a date for a 48!

Motor boat 7

Chris Craft used Women alot in there ads. ALOT. I am going to ask the Boatress to salute me. If no story apears tomorrow, call the ambulance.

I know it was written 60 years ago, and yet, to me its like I have found a perfect magazine for just me. All the brands I love are there, the articles are relevant and informative. Yet I know this is all old news. But never has the thought of good information is timeless, meant so much.

Motor boat 20

Century comes off as a more cutting edge and design forward company

Motor Boat 21

For as little as we think about Steelcraft, they sure advertised a ton!

All the issues we have in the classic boat culture are all covered in these magazines. I swear one would subscribe to Motor Boat Magazine for this stuff. And no, they aint 25 cents anymore. I paid a nice chunk, but the insights and history as if its new today is priceless.

motor boat 24

What in the heck is a Gar Plane?

Motor Boat -1


Motor boat 26

Lots of Higgins ads. They must have been spending all those PT boat earnings on trying to keep up the manufacturing of boats.

Motor Boat Magazines FB

Of course its 70 here today in VA, so I suppose I will wait and read these all in a week when its 20 all of a sudden.

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

    Nice find Matt! Looks like some wonderful reading.

    The CC Cruiser add reminds me that my uncle (I like to brag about him a lot) has a 1948 34′ Express Cruiser with duel helms and twin MCL’s. Almost bought that boat before I found AB.

  2. Jeff Funk
    Jeff Funk says:

    I have a small collection of these great magazines. It’s fun to spend some time on a crappy winter day going through an issue. Pour your favorite adult beverage and acutally read the articles and advertisements. It transports you back in time, not a bad substitute when your boat is tucked away until spring.

    • Rick
      Rick says:

      Call her a bumper or a fender but my wide has been putting herself between Panther and the dock from the beginning. After all our boats are just so darn maneuverable when docking.

  3. Paul H.
    Paul H. says:

    Oh the mighty Steelcraft – both venerated and venerable. It has been elevated to a most lofty pantheon in the mind of one Mike Mayer out in Portland, OR. Anyone know of any examples available in the region, in some sort of reasonable condition? Mike would love one…..I think. They are around but I don’t think I have ever seen one.

    • dreed
      dreed says:

      A few years ago WB did a story on a Steelcraft. In the comments section there were some located at a marina near my house which I volunteered to go take some picture of and e-mail them to a gentleman in NC that was interested in obtaining one of them. As I am taking pictures and e-mailing them to him in NC, he is on Google Earth, and e-mails me that he wants picture of the one next to it. Technology has come a long way!

  4. Wilson
    Wilson says:

    What was the history of MototBoat ?…Seems like somebody mailed us some MotorBoating magazines from the early 1900s for the Chris Craft Club archives. Was MotorBoating a predecessor to MotorBoat and did it later become MotorBoating and Sailing ?…And then there was Yachting magazine…What ever happened to it ? And then there was Antique and Classic Boating which I guess morphed in to Classic Boat which I think is now a British on line publication…So many magazines…so little time..Oh but don’t give up on The Brass Bell…It is still out there and doing fine along with Tommy Holmes Century publication and the ACBS Rudder.

  5. Jordan
    Jordan says:

    I have a Ventnor project boat for sale just like the one in the above ad. Mostly complete, good original condition, no engine, on trailer, located in Napa, CA. Very reasonable, has not been advertised before.

  6. Brian Robinson
    Brian Robinson says:

    This is timely, as I am in the process of moving a couple thousand old boating magazines in my archive to my new house.

    Google Books online is a great free resource for old Motor Boating magazines back to the 19-teens.

  7. Jimmy
    Jimmy says:

    Maybe a story about Gar Plane? The boat looks like a copy of a 18′ 6″ Gar Wood utility. My guess was someone trying to bring back Gar Wood under a different name after Gar Wood went out in 1947 and someone tried resurrect them in 1948. Would be interesting to find out more about the company.

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