Today it’s common to see roads, docks and marinas bustling with people taking their family, friends and boats out for an afternoon on the water. Many enjoy anything from snacks to a full dinner and drinks in the comfort of their boat as they take a break from water skiing, swimming, fishing, racing or sailing. While it’s an investment for us to purchase from the boating industry, the history of boating shows us that boats are much more accessible now than they were in the past.

The beginnings of ancient boating can be traced back to pre-history, however, at that time boats were primarily used for work. Using boats for pleasure, what we know as the recreational boating industry, didn’t develop until much later. When recreational boating began, it was a sport for kings and the socially elite. The industry has quite a history.

Many accounts claim the history of boating for sport can be traced back to the 1600s, and once the United States was formed much of the boating industry has risen and fallen with key points of American history.