William J. Morgan, the former owner of Hacker Boat Co., died Feb. 21 at Glen Falls Hospital in New York. He was 84.
“We are saddened by the passing of Bill Morgan, a legend in the antique and classic boat fraternity,” George Badcock, president and CEO of Hacker Boat Co. Inc., and principal of Erin Investments, owner of the boat company, said in a statement.
“We at the Hacker Boat Company and Erin Investments would not have the honor today of building Hacker-Craft boats had years ago Bill not taken the risk of buying and resurrecting a defunct trademark,” Babcock added. “In that regard everyone at the Hacker Boat Company has a responsibility to keep the Hacker-Craft brand vibrant as a testament and memorial to Bill’s life work.”
John Hacker formed Hacker Boat in the early 20th century in Detroit, but the Great Depression crippled the business.
A Hacker business partner later took over the company, changing its name to the Albany Boat Co. The company tried to recover with some contracts with the Navy and by making affordable models.
Morgan, who operated Morgan Marine, located on Silver Bay on Lake George, bought his way into Hacker-Craft boats in 1959.