Henry B. Nevins, Incorporated

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Henry B. Nevins Incorporated was wooden-hull yacht builder in City Island, New York founded in 1907 by Henry B. Nevins. Nevins was a master yacht builder and author on vessel construction who apprenticed at the island's Charles L. Seabury & Company.[1] Later he purchased the nearby Byles Yard to increase his company's acreage. Henry B. Nevins Inc. built custom sail and motor yachts and racing craft for affluent clients,[2] but also small tugs and barges for commercial customers.[3] Run by a perfectionist, Nevins' company seasoned its own lumber, designed and machined its own fittings, made its own glue, and balanced spars by weighing shavings. As a result, Nevins built more cup-winning yachts than anyone else in the industry.[1]

In 1939, Henry B. Nevins Inc. was awarded $15,000 by the United States Navy for the best design of a 54-foot motor torpedo boat.[4] During World War II, Henry B. Nevins Inc. built 24 YMS-1 class minesweepers for the U.S. Navy and 4 aircraft-rescue boats during as part of the war effort.[5] A few yachts built by Nevins before World War II, such as USS Saluda served the Navy during the war.[6] Following World War II the yard resumed private and commercial shipbuilding.[3] Nevins died in 1950.[1] Except for three minesweepers built for the Belgian Navy in 1953-54,[3] the shipyard was unable to compete with postwar European shipyards able to make yachts at 1/3 the cost. His widow sold the yard in 1954 and it ceased operations in 1962. The former site is now occupied by the City Island School.[5] Today little remains of the yard except for marine railways and slipways only visible at low tide.[3]

Nevins built the Fishers Island One Design. Designed by Charles Mower these sloops had a 24-foot hull with 15 feet on the waterline and 7-foot beam.[7] The first boats were gaff rigged sloops. 25 built.


  1. ^ a b c "MODERN LIVING: As Idle as a Painted Ship - TIME." TIME.com. N.p., 12 June 1954. Web. 2 July 2010. <http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,861010,00.html>.
  2. ^ "Henry B. Nevins, Inc. Shipyard Collection." Mystic Seaport. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 July 2010. <http://library.mysticseaport.org/manuscripts/coll/spcoll028.cfm>.
  3. ^ a b c d "Former Site of Henry B. Nevins Yacht Builders New York City." Wikimapia. N.p., n.d. Web. 3 July 2010. <http://wikimapia.org/12009493/Former-Site-of-Henry-B-Nevins-Yacht-Builders>.
  4. ^ "NATIONAL DEFENSE: Small Boats - TIME." TIME.com. TIME Magazine, 10 April 1939. Web. 2 July 2010. <http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,760967,00.html>.
  5. ^ a b "Henry B. Nevins Yacht Builders." U.S. Shipbuilding History. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 July 2010. <http://www.shipbuildinghistory.com/history/shipyards/6yacht/inactive/nevins.htm>.
  6. ^ "Saluda (YAG-87) ex Saluda (IX-87)." NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive. N.p., n.d. Web. 3 July 2010. <http://www.navsource.org/archives/09/46/46087.htm>.
  7. ^ Egan, James F.X.. "Fisher Island One Designs." Groton Long Point Yacht Club. N.p., n.d. Web. 3 July 2010. <"Archived copy". Archived from the original on 1 June 2011. Retrieved 3 July 2010.