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Mobile Yacht Club

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Website  mobileyachtclub.org
Date founded  1847
Headquarters  Alabama, United States
Mobile Yacht Club
Location  Marina Drive North, Mobile, Alabama 36605
Similar  Biloxi Yacht Club, Southern Yacht Club, Florida Yacht Club, Larchmont Yacht Club

Mobile bay from the park next to mobile yacht club


The Mobile Yacht Club is a private boat club and harbor which first met as a group in 1847 before establishing a physical clubhouse in the 1850s. It is located in Mobile, Alabama.

Contents

The Mobile Yacht Club sponsors and participates annually in numerous Club regattas, as well as races in affiliation with the Gulf Yachting Association, of which MYC is a charter member. The Club and its individual members have fared well in local, regional, national, and international local races including the Dauphin Island Regatta, the GYA sponsored Liptons, the Broken Triangle Race, the Around-the-Rig Regatta, and the MYC Anniversary Regatta.

Fire sinks two boats at mobile yacht club


History

As early as the 1830s, local "boat clubs" had been holding races on Mobile Bay. By the time the 1840s rolled around, prosperous young businessmen had organized the Mobile Yacht Club (earlier called the Mobile Regatta Club), and began holding large regattas at the fashionable watering holes on the Eastern Shore, such as Point Clear, Battles Wharf, and Howard's Landing. Those regattas attracted racing yachts and high stakes from all along the Gulf Coast, and competition among cities like New Orleans, Pass Christian, Biloxi, and Mobile was fierce. Smaller races, particularly one-on-one match races were usually held closer to downtown Mobile.

Mobile Yacht Club’s first club house, located on the east bank of the Mobile River opposite the foot of St. Francis Street. The club was reached by a small sail ferry, the ferryman being hailed by a whistle blown by the member wanting transportation—each member being furnished a whistle.

The Civil War and the presence of the Union Fleet in the bay successfully discouraged yacht racing, and the activities of Mobile Yacht Club were suspended for several years. But by 1868 (and possibly sooner) the Mobile Yacht Club was again holding regattas. The club's membership suffered during reconstruction, but by the 1880s, Mobile yachtsmen had reorganized their club and sold stock to build a clubhouse on a newly acquired plot on the Mobile River just opposite downtown. A small launch ferried members from the foot of St. Francis Street to the new club. Prior to that, meetings had been held in rooms and offices in downtown Mobile.

A burgeoning membership soon outgrew that small house, and at the 1897 annual meeting the Commodore appointed a committee to consider a new building. The famous New Orleans architect and member of the Southern Yacht Club, Thomas Sully designed the elaborate club house a few years later, and it was built near the old location on Mobile River. The clubhouse was a grand sight viewed from front, and small boat races were held on Mobile River. But when the monster hurricane of July 5, 1916 combined a high tide with south winds, the club was completely destroyed and set many yachts adrift.

By then electric streetcars had lured the focus of the city from the downtown waterfront to the parks, theaters, and beaches that line the western shore. At the end of the 600-foot (180 m) wharf at Monroe Park, Mobile Yacht Club built another lavish building, comfortably furnished and decorated with pictures of famous yachts. The MYC "rocking chair fleet" enjoyed watching many regattas from the wide verandahs of the Monroe Park club house. But the hurricane of 1916 swept the house cleanly away, with only the pilings left standing.

By the end of World War I, the members had re-established the club on the bay's Eastern Shore, where it had re-established the club on the name of Mobile Yacht Club, and moved to Barret's Beach. In 1940, just north of the mouth of Dog River, the club built a neat two-story house that served well for more than 30 years. After Hurricane Frederick in 1979, the current version of the venerable Mobile Yacht Club was constructed, overlooking a splendid view of the bay on the east, and a forest of masts in the crowded Dog River harbor on the west.

References

Mobile Yacht Club Wikipedia


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Biloxi Yacht Club
Florida Yacht Club
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