by Joel Rigoglioso member of Chesapeake Bay chapter
Flashback to 1969 and I’m in 8th grade, thirteen years old. A student in East Islip, NY (Long Island). My classmate has been told by his dad that his grades are low, and he must sell his 1958 Lyman Lapstrake 16′ Fisherman. Complete with a 1957 35hp Johnson Seahorse, and a green homemade trailer with big car tires. I convinced my parents to let me buy it all the handsome sum of $150! Off I went to a summer of clamming and trips to NY’s Fire Island on the Great South Bay. Until one day, my father told me we were moving to Manassas, Virginia and I had to sell my boat. Manassas, Virginia! Imagine that, high and dry and no salt water for mile and miles.
Now flash forward to 1990, now 34 years old and reading the Washington Post’s classified boat section, what do I see? A 1954 Lyman Lapstrake Fisherman complete with a 35hp Johnson Seahorse and a Tee Nee trailer for sale in Manassas Virginia. Nine hundred dollars later and she was mine! Has been now for the last thirty years now. Sometimes I will walk over to her in the garage and smell the wood and for a split second I’m 13 again.
Over the years we have been adventurous with the little boat. Crossing the Hatteras Inlet to go clamming in Ocracoke, NC, taking her out to eh uninhabited barrier islands off the Virginia coast, and going to boat shows in Long Island, NY and St Michaels, MD. Most of all I have gotten to share a piece of my childhood through the Lyman with my wife, Valerie, and our daughters.