Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice

    Description

    Howard Hughes' Yacht, "The Southern Cross," Archive of Typed Letters Signed and Telegrams Not content to only own airplanes, Howard Hughes purchased, in the early 1930s, a huge yacht of 425 feet and named it The Southern Cross. It is known that Katharine Hepburn painted her first picture while cruising through the Bahamas with Hughes on this yacht in 1937. Carl B. Flynn was the captain of the ship and this vast archive of interesting material was accumulated by him. Included are approximately 19 telegrams, some in manuscript, as well as two typed letters signed "Howard" by Hughes and an extremely detailed letter giving communications instructions to Flynn. The first letter is dated December 23, 1933 to Flynn and reads (in part): "I don't want you to waste any money in the operation and maintenance of the boat. I don't want you to let anyone overcharge you for any work or material. However, regardless of what it costs, I want you to do everything that is necessary or adviseable [sic] to insure that there is no deterioration of the boat, outside or inside. I expect this boat to last a lifetime, and saving a few dollars now at the expense of allowing the boat to deteriorate may cost more in the long run. I think it is cheaper to keep a boat in first class condition than to let it go to hell and then try to repair it." Hughes didn't keep it a lifetime. He sold it within six years of writing this letter! The most interesting of the items in this archive are the three pages of special instructions to Flynn and his assistant, showing more than just a hint of paranoia on Hughes part. We'll mention a few: "All correspondence must be sent thru Cox and Stevens. Never Direct." "Never mention H. R. H's name." "Never mention the Boats name." "Pay cash." "When telegraph operator or clerk asks name, give name 'Jones' or none." "Sign all wires: 'C'." "Never phone from a place where anyone could overhear you." "Never use a phone that goes through a switchboard." Well, you get the picture. A fabulous archive of material and a rare opportunity for the collector. All items are in fine condition. Accompanied by COA from PSA/DNA.

    Shipping, Taxes, Terms and Bidding
    Calculate Standard Domestic Shipping

    Sales Tax information  |  Terms and Conditions

    Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments

    Glossary of Terms

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2005
    22nd-23rd Wednesday-Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,564

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    15% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    VIEW BENEFITS
    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
      winnings 
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2018 October 25 Manuscripts - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    Thanks a million for getting approval to sell my Civil War Hospital Death Ledger! You made them AND ME , a nice profit. You are the best!
    Ed W.,
    Mount Vernon, OH
    View More Testimonials

    HA.com receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source: Similarweb.com)

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search

    Recent auctions

    2018 June 10 Arms & Armor, Civil War & Militaria Signature Auction - Dallas
    2018 June 10 Arms & Armor, Civil War & Militaria Signature Auction - Dallas
    REALIZED SO FAR $621,865