TUPPER BOATHOUSE RESTORATION
The building on this site was constructed in 1932 for Frank Tupper and son Edwin. The main portion of the building contained the Tupper Motorcraft Corp., which fabricated, sold, and maintained wood sailing and motor boats for Southampton’s commercial marine and recreation economy. The south wing served as the Tupper residence.
The business was operated by Edwin “Ned” Tupper until 1959. After 1960, the building was used for a number of dining & entertainment establishments serving local and seasonal residences. The property was purchased in 2003 by the Town of Southampton for 3.15 million of the Community Preservation Funds to be used as a public access docking facility and passive part.
A Project of the Superstorm Sandy Relief Grant Program for Historic Preservation. Assisted by a grant-in-aid from the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service. Administered by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation.
Boathouse circa 1933 (courtesy of Richard Tupper)
“Selling boats seems like a very good idea. There is nothing that I can think of that I would like to do more…If all went well, I see no reason why the business could not grow into something worth while, including a boatyard with all facilities of taking care of high-class business that is sure to soon come to this part of Long Island.”
— Letter from 22 year old Ned Tupper to father Frank Tupper, January 23, 1928.
Atlas of Suffolk County, Vol. 2, (1916) M.B. Hyde, plate 6.
The Tupper Boathouse was constructed in a post and beam manner allowing for large interior and unobstructed space. Along the walls were workbenches and machinery used in the trade. The post and beam construction also allowed for the hanging of hoists for boats and engines in the construction and repair functions. It was clad in wooden shingles and had roof dormers that allowed light into the working areas of the building.
Windows on the two stories carry wooden shutters with a crescent moon cutout in them.
On the east side, there were five bays with swingout doors leading to the shoreline.
An unusual feature of the boathouse is the attached cottage found on its south side. Reminiscent of some agricultural building in New England where farmhouses were joined to barns and other farm structures, Ned Tupper could walk out his cottage door and ten feet to the boathouse door where he worked.
Text & Images courtesy of the North Sea Maritime Center.
~~~~~~~~~~~~ July 25, 2020 ~~~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~~~ July 16, 2020 ~~~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~~~ June 26, 2020 ~~~~~~~~~~~~
Grantor – NYS Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation – Hurricane Sandy Disaster Relief Assistance Grant for Historic Properties Program – $854,780.0
Town Contractor – Carter-Melence Inc. – $1,292,000 Construction of Stabilization, Lifting, Foundation work.
Sub-Contractor – Lifting of the Building – Brownie Companies
Town Design Consultant – Stephen Tilly Architecture
Tupper Boathouse construction photographs © Jeff Heatley.