Minneapolis Investors Acquire Grafton Boat

Nathaniel Robbins Jr. has been named president of the Grafton Boat Co., a company which was recently acquired by a group of Minneapolis investors.

Grafton Boat Co. is a designer and builder of commercial and Government towboats and workboats.

The company also repairs barges and manufactures barge components at its base of operations at Grafton, 111.

The investors, headed by Henry M. (Marty) Baskerville, president of Upper Mississippi Towing'Corp., Edina-based barge towing company, acquired the assets of the company from Continental Boiler and Sheet Iron Works which had purchased it in 1970.

Mr. Robbins was formerly director of engineering, Residential Division, Honeywell, Inc., Minneapolis.

Mr. Robbins had been with Honeywell for more than 25 years.

Other officers include William E.

Evans, vice president, Evelyn Eickmeyer, treasurer, and Les Sutton, secretary.

According to Mr. Robbins, Grafton Boat will concentrate primarily on the production of towboats for private industry.

Mr. Robbins said the company currently can manufacture as many as eight towboats per year, each costing between $300,000 and $500,- 000. Mr. Robbins said Grafton Boat is currently building a 65-foot towboat for Gulf River Services, New Orleans, and has accepted an order from the American Commercial Barge Lines of Jeffersonville, Ind., for building four 80-foot towboats to be delivered in 1974-75.

Mr. Robbins said the decision to unify production around the manufacture of towboats and barge components represents an attempt by Grafton Boat to stabilize and improve its growth potential and profits by focusing production in these high-demand market areas.

Maritime Reporter Magazine, page 14,  Mar 1974

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