Contact: Caroline Chetelat at ABYC
L. Francis Herreshoff, Legendary Designer
Boat Designers Hall of Fame
Westlawn Also Announces
Two Norman Nudelman Awards
February 22, 2007, Annapolis, MD: The
Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology recently announced the 2007 North
American Boat Designers (NABD) Hall of Fame inductee at the ABYC Annual Meeting
in Miami, FL. Sponsored by Westlawn, The Landing School, Mystic Seaport – The
Museum of America and the Sea and ABYC, the NABD Hall of Fame was created
to permanently recognize achievement in the field of boat design. Each year,
typically one or more leading designers who have demonstrated exceptional
long-term and important contributions to the art and science of boat design are
inducted into the Hall of Fame. The hall will be housed at Mystic Seaport where
a crystal engraved plate will be on display to commemorate each inductee along
with photos, drawings and historical reference material. Below is the 2007
Herreshoff - One of the most influential and successful yacht designers
of the twentieth century, Lewis Francis Herreshoff, worked for: his father,
Capt. Nat Herreshoff; the U.S. Navy in World War I; and for Starling Burgess,
before going out on his own. L. Francis was also a prolific writer and—in
addition to numerous articles—he authored The Common Sense of Yacht Design, The
Compleat Cruiser, Sensible Cruising Designs, An L. Francis Herreshoff Reader,
and a biography of his father, Capt. Nat Herreshoff: The Wizard of Bristol.
Herreshoff’s writing influenced generations of designers and builders,
and—among other innovations—L. Francis pioneered the concept of the canting
keel, which is now so dominant in ultra-high-speed ocean racers such as those
that recently competed in the 2006 Volvo round-the-world race.
L.F. Herreshoff designed cruising yachts
canoes, kayaks and other small craft. Racing designs included the 1930 America’s Cup J-boat, Whirlwind,
the incredible Istalena, and the remarkable and innovative R-class
sloops Yankee and Live Yankee. His graceful cruising boats such
as the ketches Bounty, Tioga, the Araminta, and the schooner Joan
are still considered the pinnacle of perfection in form and proportion in boat
design. Other famous designs (many intended for home builders) included the Neria,
Marco Polo, and the ultra-shoal Meadow Lark, and Golden Ball
to name just a few.
Based in his home, “The Castle,” in Marblehead, MA, Herreshoff was
known locally by his nickname, “the Skipper.” Famous not only for his design
work but for his strongly held and strongly expressed opinions, Herreshoff
worked on design right up to his death in 1972, at the age of 82.
Francis Herreshoff is the sixth designer inducted into the Hall of Fame. Past
recipients include: John Alden, Nathanael Greene Herreshoff, C. Raymond Hunt ,
Philip L. Rhodes, and Olin Stephens.
Gerr, director of Westlawn said, “Of all the designers in history, L. Francis
had the most influence on me personally. His books, The Common Sense of Boat
Design and Sensible Cruising Designs, sat on my drawing table for
almost daily reference. He drew the only U.S.
30-square meter boat, Oriole. It was stored next to my boat for a few
years, and sighting down her lean, graceful hull would take one’s breath away.
It is a particular pleasure to welcome L.F. Herreshoff to the Hall of Fame.”
American Boat Designers Hall of Fame nominating committee, composed of magazine
editors, lifelong designers and educators, as well as leaders at various
design/boatbuilding schools and museums, selects nominees each year. Judges
then vote for their recommended candidates in order of preference, which is
combined with the number of mentions among the judges to produce the winners.
In addition to
honoring L. Francis Herreshoff, Westlawn also honored Edward S.
“Ted” Brewer and Bob Wallstrom with the Norman Nudelman Marine
Education Award, in recognition of a lifetime of excellence and achievement
in marine education. Ted Brewer is one of the co-founders of the Yacht Design
Institute (YDI) and former YDI president Bob Wallstrom recently came aboard as
adjunct Westlawn instructors to further enrich the Westlawn faculty. Westlawn also
recently acquired the rights to the course material of the former YDI schools.
Westlawn as an instructor in yacht design, supervisor of instruction, and vice
president of education, and president before retiring in 1997. Norm is
currently Westlawn’s Provost and still very active with the school.
Mystic Seaport – The Museum of America and
the Sea – is the nation’s leading maritime museum presenting the American
experience from a maritime perspective. Located along the banks of the historic
Mystic River in Mystic, Connecticut, the Museum houses extensive collections
representing the material culture of maritime America and offers educational
programs from preschool to post-graduate. For more information, call (888)
973-2767 or visit www.mysticseaport.org.
Founded in 1930, the Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology is
the only nationally accredited and state certified distance-learning school of
small-craft design in the United States. As the not-for-profit educational affiliate of the American Boat and Yacht Council, the mission of
the Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology is threefold:
■ To provide our students with the skills and knowledge
required to build a rewarding career in the profession of yacht and small-craft
■ To support continued growth of the
recreational and small-craft marine community through the development of well-trained,
safety oriented, boat designers developing better products for the benefit of
the boating public.
■ To provide continuing education to marine
To learn more about
Westlawn, please call (860) 572-7900 or visit the Westlawn website at www.westlawn.edu.