A1A is an enlarged version of the Mellonseed skiff developed on Barnegat Bay around 1880 when game wardens declared war on wildfowl market hunters. Until that time, the hunters used sneak boxes, but now they needed a fast, shallow draft vessel to carry their payload across the shallows, eluding their armed pursuers.
Designed by Buffalo Maritime Marine Center Master Boat Builder Roger Allen, A1A is Cortez Mellonseed hull number 16. She was built at the Cape Fear Community College wooden boat school under the watchful eye of Mark Bayne from Isle of Palms, SC. Her bright red lapstrake hull and varnished deck separate her from the crowd.
Sailmaker Nathaniel Wilson of East Boothbay, Maine modified the sail plan, lengthening the luff, shortening the boom, and leading the peak halyard aft to the helm to adjust sail twist. With a new hollow mast and gaff, above deck weight was greatly reduced, creating far less heal in heavy wind. Bronze blocks and fittings from Jim Reineck along with steam bent mast hoops complete the combination of beauty and practicality.