Philip Rhodes

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Philip Rhodes
OccupationNaval architect

Philip Leonard Rhodes (1895–1974) was an American naval architect known for his diverse yacht designs.[1]


Rhodes designed a wide variety of vessels from 7' dinghies to 123' motor-sailors, from hydrofoil racers to America's Cup winners - his 12 Meter class Weatherly (USA-17) winning the 1962 defense. His work also included large motor yachts, commercial and military vessels such as minesweepers and police boats. His clients ranged from Rockefellers to Sears & Roebuck.[2][3]

Rhodes was born in 1895 in Thurman, Ohio. He attended MIT, graduating in 1918 in naval architecture and marine engineering.[4] He worked for the US Army Corps of Engineers during World War I. After the war he began work as a shipfitter in Lorain, Ohio. He later moved to New York where he opened a small office as a marine architect.[5]

Rhodes joined the design firm of Cox & Stevens in 1934, becoming head naval architect there after the death of lead designer Bruno Tornroth in 1935. In 1946, the firm of Philip L. Rhodes succeeded Cox & Stevens Inc. It closed in 1974 following Rhodes's death.[4]

Rhodes formed his own company, Philip L. Rhodes, Naval Architects and Marine Engineers.[6]

Rhodes was one of the pioneers in the transition to fiberglass construction. The Bounty II for Coleman Plastics and Aeromarine in 1956 became one of the earliest yachts built of fiberglass, and established the viability of the new material for larger production boats.[7]



  1. ^ Henderson, Richard (1981). Philip L. Rhodes and His Yacht Designs. Camden, ME: International Marine Pub. Co. ISBN 0-87742-128-5. OL 3793032M.
  2. ^ Ben Stavis. "Analytical Biography". Temple University archive.Retrieved on 08-10-09
  3. ^ McArthur, Bruce (2020). "Philip Rhodes". Archived from the original on 13 February 2021. Retrieved 13 February 2021.
  4. ^ a b "Biography of Philip L. Rhodes". Mystic Seaport Collections.Retrieved on 08-10-09
  5. ^ Spurr, Daniel, Heart of Glass, McGraw Hill, 2000 pg 101
  6. ^ McArthur, Bruce (2022). "Philip Rhodes". Archived from the original on 10 November 2020. Retrieved 14 January 2022.
  7. ^ "Designer: Philip Rhodes". Retrieved 3 September 2023.
  8. ^ " - BOUNTY II Sailboat". Retrieved 3 September 2023.

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