So, one evening, the boys were whooping it up in a tavern near Hunter’s Point and the salty old sailor tending the bar was carefully scanning the joint. An opinion was formed, an idea spoken – to be juggled from mind to mind; To emerge in the form of a nebulous thought needing naught but space and time. It snowballed along from hand to hand, leaving impressions – taking form, Growing and swelling with accumulous thought – in the space of never, a club was born. In the tavern, a charter was placed on the wall To gather in members; “Come one, come all! The more the merrier!” came the joyful cry and the call was answered from far and wide.”
That is the first entry in the Official Bay View Boat Club Log, which cites April 17th, 1961 as the date of the club’s first meeting. Details of the early days of the Bay View are sketchy, at best, but there are a few things that those who remain among us from those times can agree on. Many thanks to Flip Allemand for much of the following information.
view of the original clubhouse
and bar siteThe history of the Bay View is much intertwined with that of the Hunter’s Point boatyard, Allemand Brothers. In the late 1930’s, a man named Joe Boesl who repaired rowboats and had a tavern in the Hunter’s Point area approached John Allemand and his friend Woody and asked them to design and build a place for his boat repair business. The structure was raised on a site just adjacent to the tavern. A second story was built over the repair shop, in order to provide Boesl with on-site living quarters. This detail from a 1942 photo shows both structures. (Click on the photo to see the full picture which includes many happy boaters.) In 1946 John and Rene (‘Flip’) Allemand established Allemand Brothers Boatyard, using the tavern for their offices.
The socializing that ensued among customers, friends and local boaters evolved into the birth of a boat club, originally the Hunter’s Point Boat Club. As the years passed, the concept for what is now the Bay View Boat Club emerged. Informal meetings began to be held in the boat repair shop, or the Allemand Brothers office/lunch bar when the weather turned cold, as they had heat, something the Boesl establishment lacked.
When Joe Boesl died in 1957, the properties came under the ownership of Hoagy Holmes who became the first club Commodore. In 1962, Mr. Holmes gave or sold the house to the Bay View Boat Club.