Online collection of pictures and information about vintage wood Hiliner Boats

Hiliner History Letter

I recently traded emails with Greg Grundtisch, a boat builder and writer from the Niagra, New York area.  He has had pieces published in “Antique Mahogany” and “Messing About In Boats” magazines.   He was nice enough to send me copies of some pieces that relate to Hiliner.  I will try to scan them, but i’m not sure how they will turn out.” 

One of the pieces was about the Hiliner Peapod. Greg had come across a 12′ Fiberglass peopod with the name Hiliner on it.   In attempt to research its history he contacted the Fernald family in Newbury, MA.   The following is the letter that Howie Fernald,  Son of Bunny, sent to him.

” I am Howard (Howie) Fernald Jr.  I was the skinny blond kid in the last Hi liner Catalogs.  Now I’m 2.  My dad bought into Hi Liner Boats in Ipswich, Massachusetts, around 1957.  We moved operations to nearby Newbury in 1963.  An offer we could not refuse at the time for the Hi Liner property allowed us to close the doors in 1967.  All the boats, tools, etc. were auctioned off at that time.  All but the name and trademark.  We sold those to Dave Mosely who built the Ray Hunt design Hiliner 222 for several years.  They had an extremely bad fire, had bad lawsuits, and one of the Boston banks would up with the name.  Boston Whaler built two of the walk around cabin boats, very late ’60s or early ’70’s.  Nothing else was ever heard about Hi Liner ntil a one man operation down the Cape started making th peapod.  I don’t know if the name Hi Liner as used by chance or by rights.  This was fun.”    

Note: the Hi-liner trademark has been used by a fishing tackle company since 1998.

One response

  1. Shane

    I am looking for a 1957 Speed Star steering wheel, does anyone know where I can find one? Or for that matter any parts for my Speed Star?

    November 4, 2014 at 11:17 pm

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