The Merry Maiden  

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Palmer Scott & Company, Boat Yard

Palmer Scott & Company was established in 1935 in Fairhaven, Massachusetts and after the fire that burned it to the ground in 1936 the business was relocated to north end of New Bedford, Massachusetts on the Acusnet River.

"After the fire in 1935 and the reestablishment of the company in New Bedford the company built several rather fabulous wooden yachts. I remember one, I believe a power boat that had a spiral staircase down to the main cabin with a snake as the banister which ended with the head of a cobra. Another yacht had a mahogany tiller carved in the shape of a muscular man's arm with rolled up shirt sleeve ending with the hand curled around a ball. It took a full case of scotch to keep the carver lubricated enough to finish the project. As soon as war was declared Palmer Scott & Co., went into full time government work. During this time, my father was sent to South America to see if he could find sources of lumber. He did find some trees suitable for boat construction in the jungles of Brazil but each tree took from 6 months to a year get out. At the end of WWII there wasn't much call for 'gorgeous' wooden yachts and P. Scott was approached by a crazy chemist (that's tongue in cheek, the man was brilliant) to construct fiberglass boats. Between the two men they came up with a method to build the first vacuum molded fiberglass hull. The old time wooden boat builders were incensed and one of them said that 'the company now sucked boats.'

I doubt there is anything left that might be of interest to you and the Merry Maiden. Out here in 1954 we had a vicious little hurricane 'Carol.' My father lost pretty much everything at the north end LCVP went through the office distributing files to the winds. Some 24' air/sea rescue craft were found up to 9 miles away in a farmer's field. The entire plant went under water pretty much sounding the death knell to Palmer Scott & Company. Marscott Plastics survived and everything eventually became George D. O'Day Associates. I understand some blueprints survive and I'm trying to locate them in case they be of interest to you." T. S. C.

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This town is the home to many a seafaring story.