“Women Never Did Get Much Pleasure Out Of Boats That Were All Greasy, Dirty And Spray Wet After A Short Trip”

Albany Motor boat

What? Does Woody Boater not know it’s 2018 and we don’t talk that way anymore? I suppose this sort of sexist marketing is a thing of the past. Like 1914. Never mind that the Boatress would agree 100%. This quote is from a 1915 Brochure for the John L. Hacker – Albany Boat Company. Below is some history on the subject from our pals at Hacker Boat Co. And an amazing restoration of one of the Albany boats!

The photo shows E.L.S. II in Alexandria Bay, New York. Designed by John L. Hacker and built by the Albany Boat Company. Albany Boat Catalog circa 1915.

John L. Hacker formed a close working relationship with a Dutch immigrant, Joseph Van Blerck, in about 1906. Van Blerck was a very innovative engine designer. His high horsepower four cycle engines powered many of the early Gold Cup racers. A 1914 Van Blerck Engine Company sales booklet listed all the Hacker boats that had Van Blerck engines, including Kitty Hawk I, Oregon Kid and Cloverleaf.

Early in his career, during less prosperous times, Hacker would seek work where he could find it. In 1914, Hacker teamed up with L.L. Tripp, who was Van Blerck’s eastern sales agent, in Tripp’s Albany Boat Company located at 9th street in Watervliet, New York, a few miles north of the city of Albany. While Hacker was the chief designer there, the company’s boats transformed from traditional round
bottomed launches to hard-chime V-bottom boats.

These were state of the art pleasure boats at the time. So confident was the company in the appeal of their boats that they boasted in their 1914 sales brochure that “…if your lady or ladies are along you may as well commence to figure your bank roll. Ladies are delighted with these boats. Women never did get much pleasure out of boats that were all greasy, dirty and spray wet after a short trip.”

The John L. Hacker-Albany Boat Company relationship was short lived. It lasted little more than a year. Below is a wonderful restoration done this summer and is now featured for sale on the Hacker Craft Website. HERE.

The craft is a 32’ Albany brand model, a hard-chine split-cockpit runabout, built by The Albany Boat Company, a precursor to The Hacker Boat Company. It was designed by John L. Hacker and Elliott Gardener. It is one of two remaining such models.

Thats one heck of an engine

LOA: 32′ Beam: 7′ 6″ Built: 1923-6 Original Power: 6-cylinder Sterling Dolphin Current Power: Scripps 208 Abstract:
It has had at least one previous major restoration, including substantial material replacement, and some details appear to have been altered. The engine is not original to the model but is period correct and is itself a very rare item.

Wonderful ride


Albany Boat Company boats were expensive, well-thought-of and considered a premium brand. The company ceased operations in 1932.

7 replies
  1. Mike K
    Mike K says:

    dosnt troy have any picturs of women that were “All Greasy, Dirty And Spray Wet After A Short Trip”?

  2. Bob Kays
    Bob Kays says:

    A Lake Hopatcong connection to Van Blerck. The LH Breeze noted one of his visits in 1925. The “Flapper” picked up people at the train and delivered them to points around the lake. It was based on Raccoon Island, where we have our house, and was owned by the Decker Brothers. It was considered one of the fastest boats on the lake in the early 1920’s.

    Mr. Joseph Van Blerck, inventor of the
    Continental Van Blerck engine, one of
    which was used last year with great success
    in the “Flapper,” spent the week-end
    with his young son at “Onaledge Park.”
    Mr. Van Blerck and son borrowed Miss
    Louise Cox’s canoe and while out in
    it, in some way contrived to fall or get
    tipped into the Lake without even getting
    the newspaper, which was on the floor of
    the canoe, wet.

  3. floyd r turbo
    floyd r turbo says:

    There’s some limited info on Van Blerk motors which I find interesting ever since I saw one in a launch restored by Lance Wilson. It was a 4 cylinder six hundred some odd cubic inch monster with at least 2 sparks plugs per cylinder. I read he built a straight 12 cylinder engine 23oo+ cubic inches. That crankshaft must have been an incredible monster. Found this early VB on youtube running;

  4. briant
    briant says:

    …Greasy, Dirty, and Spray Wet after a short trip…..

    Sounds like a lady Gaga concert…..

    okay. I gotta ask. What is so wrong with that windscreen?

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