August 28, 2019
Remembering the life of
Captain Luther H. Blount
Born in Warren, by the age of 16 he built his first boat, a 16’ kayak made out of pine and canvas. He was a graduate of Barrington High School (1935) and Wentworth Institute of Technology (1937). During his school days he started his first business, The Dippy Duck Widdle Shop, where he created small hand carved jewelry pins out of wood for wholesale to New York City department stores. He also worked for the family businesses carrying oysters shells by wheelbarrow and delivering ice.
He began his professional career as a machinist at RI’s Berkshire Hathaway Mill and then became a jewelry designer for Dieges and Clust. In 1939 he was a plant engineer for Belding, Heminway & Corticelli of Putnam, CT where he invented nymo thread which revolutionized sewing thread construction worldwide. After a short stint in the US Army, he milled lumber and operated a small dairy farm in Putnam, CT.
He returned to Warren, RI as project manager for the Blount Seafood Corporation where he invented, designed and supervised construction of steam clam processing equipment, a revolution in the clam processing industry. He further helped the family business in 1947 and became vice president of E. B. Blount & Sons managing oyster operations. This was the onset of his lifelong expertise in aquaculture regeneration.
It was 1949 when he built his first commercial vessel, a steel oyster boat, leading to the founding of Blount Marine Corporation, (currently Blount Boats Inc.) where he designed and built over 300 hulls in the Warren, RI shipyard including the famed Miss Liberty, the longest continuously operating passenger ferry in the United States and his industry-changing stern trawler, the Narragansett.