THE DECADE OF FUN.
Prosperity ReturnsConsumer values dominated the American economy at this time and recreational boating had hit the middle class. The automobile market was ﬂourishing and boats began to take on characteristics of cars. Many boats were offered with tail ﬁns, head or tail lights, even a landau top was available on the 1957 Chris Craft Capri.
Lyman Boat WorksLyman, of Sandusky, Ohio, manufactured boats with lapstrake hulls. This design was accomplished by attaching planks to the boat frame and to the planks themselves, so that planks actually lapped one edge of another. This added strength to the hull and allowed Lyman to be one of the premier manufacturer of outboard motorboats during the 1950s. Their line of boats included such features as white paint, windshields, folding convertible top, upholstered seats and complete steering mechanisms.
Outboard MotorsThe advancement of technology enabled outboard motors to run both fast and quietly, thus leading to a surge in popularity for outboard powered runabouts in the 1950s. There were dozens of outboard manufacturers thriving at this time, but Evinrude Motors and Mercury Outboards were the largest. It was said that Evinrudes had the power and not so much speed, while Mercurys lacked the low end power but had the high speed that made them faster.
Century Boat CompanyCentury built beautiful inboard and outboard mahogany motorboats, large and small, during this decade. The stylish Palomino runabout was introduced in 1955 which featured charcoal black mahogany and palomino colored vinyl upholstery. The Century Coronado, also introduced at this time and promoted as the ‘Cadillac of Boats’, offered a hard-top model that showcased the trademark sliding top.
Average Salary: $3,216/Yr
New House: $8,450
New Car: $2000
Quart of Milk: 82¢
Gold per ounce: $35.00