Founded in 1928, Built in USA
Hinckley was founded in 1928 by Benjamin B. Hinckley after he purchased a small boatyard in Southwest Harbor, ME.
In 1932 Benjamin’s son, Henry R. Hinckley, an engineering graduate from Cornell, took control of the company. A 36’ “fisherman motorboat” dubbed “Ruthyeolyn” built in 1933 was Hinckley’s first boat.
In 1938, Hinckley came out with its first sailing vessel, a 28’ Sparkman & Stephens Sloop. Hinckley would go on to produce 20 of these sloops, making them the company’s first mass production line.
Hinckley’s production of pleasure boats began soon after the war.
In 1945 the Sou’wester sailboat was created. 62 original Sou’Westers were built, making it the largest fleet of single design cruising boats of its time.
During the 1950’s, Hinckley began experimenting with the use of fiberglass to construct his yachts hulls. His first fiberglass boat, the Bermuda 40’ sailing ship was released in 1959. The last Hinckley-built wooden boat was the 1960 “Osprey.”
In 1979 Henry Hinckley sold the company to Richard Tucker, but after Tucker’s death in 1980 Henry Henry’s son Bob bought the company back with the help of his business partner Shepard McKenney. The two released Hinckley’s first fiberglass powerboat christened “Talaria” in 1989.
Hinckley became the first American boat company to use SCRIMP technology (a method of making composite material with nearly no volatile organic compound emissions) in its yachts, for which Hinckley was awarded the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s Environmental Merit Award in 1994.
The company again fell under new ownership in 1997 when it was purchased by The Bain, Willard Companies. William Bain, Ralph Willard, and Alexander Spaulding took over operations. Under the new ownership, Hinckley began to market power boats equipped with jet drives. The company also developed more advanced fiberglass construction techniques dubbed "Dual Guard", which aimed to create a stronger hull.