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History by Andreas Jordahl Rhude

Classic Boats, Inc. was one of the many boat firms that was operated by Robert F. Smith of the Chicago area.

He and his brother owned a marine dealership (Smith Marine) in the Berwyn area in the 1960s. They along with their father purchased Dunphy Boat Corp. of Oshkosh, WI in 1963 and quickly drove it into the ground.

About 1970 Smith Marine opened another dealership at Sequoit Harbor near Antioch. He also started Classic Boats, Inc. about that time, manufacturing fiberglass boats. I have no clue how long they lasted. They were at 1 Roselle Road, Roselle, IL 60172 in Chicagoland.

Smith purchased Sea Sprite Boat Co. at Crescent City, IL on Friday the 13th of April 1984. Melvin Redeker, the seller, never got paid in full.

Smith eventually had his fingers in many other boat-building firms which he operated under the umbrella of United Marine Corporation, including Moomba, Skier's Choice, Sea Sprite, Sea Raider, Cheetah, Renken, and others. Mark Twain may have been one of them.

Smith filed for chapter XI bankruptcy on 25 April 2002 with $97 million in claims against him and his businesses!

I have never seen literature of Classic Boats, Inc. nor do I know how many boats they built.

Classic Boats in Use

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