Fifth Generation Of Family Named To Executive Posts At Hughes Companies

At the recent annual director's meeting held in New Brunswick, N.J., Robert J. Hughes Sr., chairman of James Hughes, Inc., and William J. Hughes Sr., chairman of Hughes Bros., Inc., announced new appointments in the family-held marine businesses. The meeting also commemorated the 90th anniversary of the Hughes Barge Line, founded in 1894.

The Hughes roots go back to Michael Hughes, a barge builder, who arrived in New York in 1843 and relocated to New Brunswick in 1862. His son, James Hughes Sr., worked in his father's shipyard and in 1894 began to operate barges on the Delaware and Raritan Canal, transporting coal from Pennsylvania to New York. In 1910, with his barge and tug fleet growing, he opened an office in New York City.

His son, James Hughes Jr., expanded tbe business from canal to coastwise transportation, representing the third generation of the family. Known in marine circles as "The Captain," he led the business until his death in 1949. James Hughes, Inc. was incorporatecd in 1934, and became an iCC-certified water carrier in 1944. His three sons, Bill, Bob, and Jim (the latter died in 1965), joined the firm in the 1930s. With expanding business they set up the separate corporation of Hughes Bros., Inc. in 1945 to handle chartering and sales activities under the slogan "Clearing House for Marine Difficulties." The Hughes organization continued to expand, operating and renting their fleet of barges, transporting oversize objects by tug and barge, and providing or selling all types of floating equipment and molded Uniroyal marine fenders through its Sales Department. Bob Hughes Sr. is widely known throughout the industry, having formerly served as chairman of The American Waterways Operators, Inc. Bill Hughes has long been active in the Moles and the Whitehall Club, of which he served as president.

While remaining as chairmen and chief executive officers of the two family firms, the Hughes brothers have revived a tradition observed for many years of rotating annually the presidency of the corporations.

Accordingly, they have named for the current year, fifth-generation family members—William J.

Hughes Jr. as president of Hughes Bros., Inc.; Robert J. Hughes Jr.

as president of James Hughes, Inc.; and Joseph W. Hughes as vice president of both companies.

Maritime Reporter Magazine, page 8,  Jan 1985

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