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I was born and raised in the South Bronx, N.Y. As a young boy I was taken on a class trip to the Museum of Natural History in Manhattan. I saw an exhibit of miniature dioramas of ancient villages. I was fascinated by them and began building some of my own. As I grew up, I began building model cars and airplanes. Later in life I got married and began a career and raising a family. Modeling had to take a back seat for sometime during that period.
I became interested in ship modeling when my son Robert sent me a ship model kit as a Christmas gift in 1988 while he was stationed with the U.S. Army in Tacoma, Washington. After assembling that model, I went on a search to find someone who could teach me the art of ship model building. I was introduced to a master model builder by the name of Frank Mastini, who lived in Hartsdale, N.Y. not far from my job at that time. He agreed to take me on as a student and I apprenticed with him for about four years. Later I decided to strike out on my own to pursue scratchbuilding models. I received my first model commission in 1992 when the president of a book publishing company asked me to build a model of the ship La Amistad. In 1997 my wife Marcelline and I moved to Sarasota Florida where we built and ran an art gallery. While living in Sarasota, I built and sold models in our gallery. We sold the gallery in 2002 and moved to Phoenix, AZ to be close to our grand children.
I currently have ship models in the National Maritime Historical Society Gallery in Peekskill, N.Y., the Hudson River Museum in Kingston, N.Y., an Amistad in the Law Library of Howard University, and in the collection at Mystic Seaport museum in Mystic, Connecticut. I also have many models in the homes of private collectors around the country.
I have now been building models for approximately 27 years. I find ship model building very relaxing and pleasurable. Being retired, it allows me to spend as much time as I please to work on my models.
Some of the models I have built include:
The Pride of Baltimore II
Yacht America and many others.