The true genesis of S&S

To the editor: In the Jan./Feb. 2003 issue of Chartroom Chatter, mention was made of the Cruising Club of America accepting nominations for the Rod Stephens Trophy (CCA taking heroic nominations Issue 127) and the fact that its namesake is for “one of two founders of Sparkman & Stephens in New York.”

I believe S&S Inc. was founded by the union of Drake Sparkman and Olin J. Stephens II and was incorporated in 1929. Mr. Sparkman was a yacht broker and yachtsman active in the Long Island area, and Mr. Stephens was a budding designer. Rod Stephens (Olin’s brother) joined S&S in 1935 and was involved in supervising the building of S&S designs. He was, to be sure, a valued partner. I mention this only to point that there was more than one Stephens involved in the rich history of this design firm. For those interested, I would recommend a most fascinating autobiography by Olin Stephens II, All This and Sailing, Too. (Mystic Seaport Museum Inc., 1999).

John J. Schilling, MD, lives in Albany, Ga.

By Ocean Navigator