Alan Jackson Makes Over The Top Donation To The Antique Boat Museum.

Flat Top en route to Clayton NY

Flat Top en route to Clayton NY

3-time Country Music Entertainer of the Year, 2-time Grammy Award Winner and a true Woody Boater Alan Jackson has made the donation of all donations to the Antique Boat Museum and thus to all of us that have only won… well… nothing. But we sure love classic boats like Mr Jackson, and for that, we are all winners. .

There is an official press release that I am sure has been gone through with a fine tooth comb by the PR folks we have included below. But from the heart we thank you Alan. The hobby thanks you, and my kids who have no idea of how generous you are, thank you. And they thank no one, little ingrates. Here Mr Jackson donates one of the baddest ass boats on the planet and they just want to sit around, eat Cheetos and play video games. Anyway. This killer 1955 29 foot Chris-Craft Semi enclosed is over the flat top cool. It even comes with the perfect name named by one of the best writers of our time. The value of that alone is priceless. So, here is the official slick press release, man that is one sweet release. Sorry I butchered it up here. Thanks again Alan Jackson the brand, Mr Jackson the star, and thanks Alan the regular guy just like us who loves a great day out on his Woody Boat for helping preserve a piece of history.

Here is Flat Top a couple years ago at Lake Tahoe

Here is Flat Top a couple years ago at Lake Tahoe – photo Texx


CLAYTON, New York (November 21, 2013) – The Antique Boat Museum (ABM), North America’s premier freshwater nautical museum based in Clayton, New York, announced today that it has been the recipient of a generous donation by one of country music’s biggest stars.
Alan Jackson, a multi-platinum recording artist known for being one of the most-nominated artists in CMA history and the winner of awards such as Entertainer of the Year and Grammys, has contributed a gorgeous 1955 29-foot Chris-Craft Semi-Enclosed to be added to the ABM’s already impressive collection of historic and classic boats.
“The Museum is grateful for Mr. Jackson’s gift of this remarkable boat, and for his continuing dedication to America’s boating history,” explained Emmett Smith, Curator. “Mr. Jackson has been a leader in restoring some of these classics and it is astonishing to see them appreciated by a musician who operates at the highest level of contemporary popular culture. Boating and country music are both important parts of the American lifestyle, and Mr. Jackson is clearly someone who loves the history of both.”

A perfect party boat. Lake Tahoe

A perfect party boat. Lake Tahoe – photo Texx

According to Jackson, “wooden boats have always been my first love. I’ve really appreciated the Antique Boat Museum efforts at preserving the history of antique wood boats.”
Flat Top, named in reference to the flat top steel-string acoustic guitars commonly used by Jackson, is one of just 36 of these boats ever built by Chris-Craft. The boat was used and stored on Lake Chautauqua, located in western New York, by its original owner. In 2002, Jackson purchased the boat in poor condition and transported it to Tennessee to undergo extensive restoration work at Hickman Boat Works. Under the craftsmanship of Travis Hickman, Flat Top was revived through a nearly 3-year restoration project, leaving no details untouched.
Flat Top now features pristine woodwork and artistry, both interior and exterior, while retaining its original look and is considered to be show boat quality.

The absolute perfect name for this boat!

The absolute perfect name for this boat!-  photo Texx

Jackson has been a longtime wooden boat enthusiast and has been engaged with the Antique Boat Museum in the past. In 2009, Jackson made a trip to Clayton for the annual Antique Boat Show & Auction, through ties with local boat broker Peter Mellon of Antique Boat America, which has listed a number of Jackson’s boats for sale over the years. That August, Jackson provided 5 antique boats to be auctioned. During his time in the 1000 Islands region that year, he also cruised with friends aboard his yacht, Neon Rainbow, which was docked at the Museum.
Flat Top arrived in Clayton last weekend and will remain in storage throughout the winter months. The boat is expected to be available for viewing in some form during the Museum’s 2014 season. Details and information will be available prior to the Museum’s May 2 re-opening.

Leaving home, headed to her new home.

Leaving home, headed to her new home.

Located on the St. Lawrence River in the 1000 Islands, the Antique Boat Museum features a collection of over 300 antique and classic boats, among thousands of recreational boating artifacts. In 2014, the Museum will host the 50th annual Antique Boat Show and Auction, the longest running show in North America, on August 1-3, as well as the Raceboat Regatta on August 8-10. For more information please visit the Museum’s website at


30 replies
    • Troy
      Troy says:

      Here is a shot of her little sister.
      A 1955 CL-25 only 30 made.
      This is a single engine, not sure how many singles were made.

    • Troy
      Troy says:

      These pics were taken by Mitch Garey at Edgecomb Boat Works.
      One of the primier shops in Maine.
      Interesting that they are both black sided. I wounder if they came out of the factory like that.

          • don vogt
            don vogt says:

            Conrad’s Chris Craft, The Essential Guide is about the best one around in being comprehensive. It is not always 100% accurate but is a great reference work.

  1. don vogt
    don vogt says:

    A wonderful gift to the musuem. Mr. Jackson is to be thanked for his generosity. The boat was at tahoe a couple of years ago for the show, and won an award. A great boat.

  2. Alex
    Alex says:


    HESSEL, Michigan (November 21, 2013) – Alex Watson, summertime classic boater and wintertime recluse, announced today that he read the story and press release about Alan Jackson’s donation to the Antique Boat Museum in Clayton, New York.

    Exclaimed Watson, “Wow. That’s a striking boat!” After pausing for a bite of twice-toasted pumpernickel bagel and a sip of double french roast coffee, Watson continued “I’ve never been a big fan of the bullnose bow. But that design element works really well on Flat Top.”

    Though no one was within earshot, Watson kept babbling. “And the those black hull sides, complimented by the brightwork and light-colored hard top, are especially striking on such a low-slung boat,” he remarked.

    Watson would have opined more about today’s WoodyBoater story, however, the toxic combination of Santa Baby, Santa Clause is Coming to Town (Springsteen version) and a positively atrocious rendition of Joy To The World by Mannheim Steamroller forced him to leave the coffee shop in a huff.

    For more information about the styling of rare classic Chris-Crafts, consult someone who actually knows what he/she is talking about.

    • Paul H.
      Paul H. says:

      Hey Watson, very Onion-esque! Been reading that satirical tour de force lately?

      I have seen this boat and it is very well done and presents extremely well. Very generous donation, I must say.

      Now, get back to being immersed in the holiday spirit!

    • Al Benton
      Al Benton says:

      Well, Alex I tried to fill in some details about the remarkable year of changes to details and style of some of the 1955 Chris-Craft line-up. But not being known as a mathematical genius and flunking 6th grade math, I couldn’t post my well prepared history lesson.

      Had I been able, I may have mentioned that the love/hate bull nose became more of a feature beginning in 1955. Also that the turtle-back bow plate went into the history books, being replaced by a large, wide sweeping mahogany toe rail.

      I might have mentioned that the same 28′-7″ hull was used to produce 5 different Chris-Craft models that year, and all of them in small quantities.

      Thanks to Alan Jackson and his passion for Woody Boats, and his generosity, this history is now preserved for us to enjoy at the Antique Boat Museum.

      Oh crap! Now for the math quiz…

    • Troy
      Troy says:

      “I’ve never been a big fan of the bullnose bow.”
      Seriously, am I missing something here?
      They are the bomb!

        • Troy
          Troy says:

          Good one!

          I think I need to plan a trip to Michigan next summer. I understand I should bring beer. Any special brand?

          • Alex
            Alex says:

            All brands are special. Just like children.

            Actually, one never needs to bring beer to Michigan. We are very well equipped with our microbrews in this state. Bells, New Holland, Shorts, Founders… Many other smaller ones. Heck, even here in Peroskey we’ve now got a great brewpub. It’s enough to bring a tear to my eye.

            All that’s missing is a Hessel Hefe-weizen.

      • Randy Rush Captain Grumpy
        Randy Rush Captain Grumpy says:

        That was my 1958 Popular Mechanix boat, made from plans, not a kit. You can see more pictures of it on this site , just search captain Grumpy .

  3. brian t
    brian t says:

    Beautiful boat and a generous gift…. but uh….

    One would not dare hang the Mona Lisa in a Piggly Wiggly, so why was this boat not given a new trailer???

    Ryan Trailers… here is the number: 503.631.7926

      • brian t
        brian t says:

        M – not really a question of the possible miles traveled but more of aesthetics – a beauty of a boat sitting on a rusted crappo trailer.

        It is like displaying a Lamborghini Reventon equipped with wheels and tires from a Ford Pinto.

        Maybe Alex with his photoshop skills can help me out here…..

  4. Rochette R. Withers
    Rochette R. Withers says:

    “(Who Says) You Can’t Have It All”, Antique Boat Museum? What a hunk o’ boat! My dad, John Withers, loved Tennessee, country music, antique boats, the Museum and the St. Lawrence. He would have been all over this! Thank you, Mr. Jackson! I look forward to viewing FLAT TOP at the 50th Annual Antique Boat Show in Clayton this summer.

  5. Jimmuh
    Jimmuh says:


    Jimmuh would rather listen to more videos of Sverige than any country music from AJ or anyone else.

    • Texx
      Texx says:

      Jimmuh – As requested, for your viewing (and listening) pleasure, I posted another video of “Sverige” being launched and running on the canal, at the end of yesterday’s story from Sweden.

      Lots of great twin V-12 sound towards the end of the clip. Imagine trying to turn around a traditional Unlimited Hydro in that canal?

  6. dreed
    dreed says:

    What time is that baby rolling through Syracuse? If I have my way, it won’t make it to Clayton…just kidding.
    Thank you Mr. Jackson

  7. Carla from Hagerty
    Carla from Hagerty says:

    Thank you for placing “Flat Top” in the appropriate home, AJ. A classic CC semi-enclosed donated by a very classy Southern gentleman.

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