Launching The Mystic

January 26th, 2012, 12:00H · Topics: Business, Guys · Print

Workers from the Huckins Yacht Corporation roll the Mystic VIII from their workshop off Jacksonville’s Lakeshore Blvd. to launch it in the Ortega River.  This 60 foot Atlantic model was ordered from Huckins in 1956 by Philip R. Mallory and delivered in 1957. Mallory started the P.R. Mallory Company in 1916 which began as a supplier of tungsten wire filaments for light bulb manufacturers. The company then went into electrical components and developed the miniature mercury battery which was sold for military electronics during World War II.  The battery component of the business later evolved into Duracell.

The Huckins Yacht Corporation started in Jacksonville in 1928 by founder Frank Pembroke Huckins.  Cindy Purcell, the granddaughter of Huckins and the third generation of the Huckins family to oversee the business was a generous resource for information on this yacht.  With the name of the yacht Purcell quickly came up with the original plans for the craft, documentation of ownership, service records and home ports.  For me the real thrill was seeing the two inch thick photo file on just this boat pulled from their extensive archives.  Within this file was another file labeled ‘Sandgren Photos’ which was a series of detail shots of the Mystic shot by Loyd Sandgren for Huckins which included their print of the above image.

According to Huckins’ records this was the first of three Atlantic model yachts built.  It was registered in Mystic Seaport, CT by Mallory.  The craft summered at Fishers Island, NY and wintered in Miami, FL returning to Jacksonville from time to time for service.  Originally wood hulled, it was later fiberglassed by Huckins.  The original owner died in 1975 and the boat changed hands.  The last time it was at the Huckins facility was in 1990, renamed Rebel.  It’s current whereabouts are unknown.

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  1. 1 Raymond H. King, Jr. February 4th, 2013 12:28H

    As a result of competetive performance trials prior to WWII, the Huckins basic hull design was the one used by the U.S. Navy for the manufacture ot (nearly) all PT boats during WWII. Other larger companies built more of the PT boats, but they were all of the basic Huckins design.The Huckins signature yacht, the Fairform Flyer was built to that hull design and after the War it retained most of the superstructure design too, even the grey paint scheme.

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About Photographer Loyd Sandgren

I first met Loyd Sandgren in 1997 as I was putting photo gear back into my car after... Learn More