Luxury Yachts: Thank goodness the Burger Boat Company was revitalized in the early 90s and put back in the waters of Manitowoc, Wisconsin, by its new owners, David Ross and Jim Ruffolo. Founded in 1863 by Henry B. Burger, the contributions this organization made to the U.S. and to the boating industry are historic, patriotic and most inventive. From 1870 to the turn of the century, the firm specialized in manufacturing steamers, tugs, scows, schooners and barges to support the industrialization efforts of the USA. During World War I, Burger manufactured 22 vessels for the U.S. Navy and Emergency Corps.
Fifty-one vessels were crafted for the U.S. Army and Navy during WWII, and seven were assembled in 1951 for the Korean War. During the Depression of the 1930s, Burger built fishing vessels instead of luxury yachts as a matter of practicality.
"Tin can" was the derogatory reference floated by the luxury boating industry when, in 1938, the Burger Boat Company introduced the 81-feet long Tamaris, which was the nation's first all-steel-welded hull. However, the industry's myopic all-wood-hull perspective sank shortly thereafter, and all manufacturers were producing "tin cans."
Today the Burger Boat Company forte is custom building luxury yachts from 35 to 61 meters in length (i.e.,
115 to 200 feet). The general timeframe from inception to completion of a project is 14 to 24 months. The enterprise brings dreams into to fruition. There are currently 20 models displayed on Burger's website. The first yacht displayed is the WOW, and it vividly lives up to its exclamatory name. The other 19 aren't too shabby either! All Burgers are rare and well done.
For LxM James Rothaar
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