Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Pine Castle Historical Markers - part 6


In 1925, Walter C. Meloon moved his family from New Hampshire to Pine Castle and started the Florida Variety Boat Company with two other partners. The building, located on the southeast corner of Randolph and Hoffner Avenues, was constructed with blocks that once housed the old theater and later the water works plant. In 1930, Meloon became the sole owner and changed the name of the company to Pine Castle Boat and Construction Company. Eight years later, the company became known as Correct Craft. When the company needed more space, it moved to Orange Avenue.

During World War II, the army asked the Meloons to build storm boats capable of crossing the treacherous Rhine River, Germany’s last natural line of defense in the West. For a company that normally built forty-eight boats a month, the government’s request for 300 boats in three weeks seemed impossible. Yet, the boat builders not only fulfilled the contract, but also made 100 boats to spare. The family-owned business, operated from the same location until June 2006, when its need for expansion forced the company to move to East Orange County.

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