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Indian Girl Question

Discussion in 'Wood and Canvas' started by samb, Mar 25, 2021.

  1. samb

    samb LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Did Rushton ever make open gunwale Indian Girls, or have people just turned B grade boats (ribs nailed to rails, no pockets) into open gunwales by cutting the top bit of planking and machining new outer rails?

    Sam
     
  2. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

  3. OP
    OP
    samb

    samb LOVES Wooden Canoes

  4. Dan Miller

    Dan Miller cranky canoeist Staff Member

    This flyer strongly implies that Rushton, Inc., started using open gunwales in 1913.

    I don't have a lot of data, but so far the lowest serial number with open gunwales is 5164.

    Rushton IG 1913.jpg
     
  5. MGC

    MGC Scrapmaker

  6. OP
    OP
    samb

    samb LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Next time the Navahoe needs canvassing, perhaps is the time for open gunwales . . . . I'd better show my son this, because hopefully it won't be in my lifetime!
    Are the planks stopped short of the rib tops and outwale with a rebate?

    Looking at the 1913 flier, I note that Navahoes aren't mentioned.It reads like closed gunwales weren't offered at all.
    Sam
     
  7. MGC

    MGC Scrapmaker

    The planking runs to the top of the ribs. The outside rails are shaped to sit over the planking but not the rib tops. I may be able to provide a view of the rails if I can find one. IMG_0171 (2).JPG
     
  8. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    I was curious when other manufacturers introduced open gunwales and found the following in the known scanned catalogs. Please let me know if anyone has a catalog from any canoe builder with an earlier reference to open gunwales. Thanks,

    Benson



    1905 Old Town dinghy
    1906 Old Town canoe
    1907 Morris canoe
    1908 Carleton canoe
    1908 Chestnut canoe
    1908 Rushton canoe
    1910 Kennebec canoe
    1915 White canoe
    1916 Mullins canoe
     
  9. Dan Miller

    Dan Miller cranky canoeist Staff Member

    One of the curiosities of open-gunwale Indian Girls is that the edge of the planking is visible. One example:

    IMGP0112 1500px.jpg
     
  10. OP
    OP
    samb

    samb LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Thanks MGC and Dan.
    The canvas must have been trimmed just shy of the top so as not to show.
    With this construction, it must have been so much easier (so cheaper - $11) to machine and fit then the caps and side caps used previously
    Possibly a clue to help dating boats?

    Surely any Navahoes built from this time would also have open gunwales - unless they were using up old parts.

    Sam
     
  11. Dan Miller

    Dan Miller cranky canoeist Staff Member

    The B-grade-style rails were used on both IGs and Navahoes right through the bitter end (1916/17). So, gunwale style is not useful for dating Rushton canvas canoes. Fortunately, they were numbered sequentially, and while few records survive, we can at least align them with one another.

    The primary differences between the Navahoes and B-grade IGs are the use of lower quality materials, and an adjustment to the form that lowers the sheer curvature at the stems.
     
  12. OP
    OP
    samb

    samb LOVES Wooden Canoes

    . . . . but the flier above suggests that B grades from 1913 all would have open inwales whereas the 1912 version inwales and cover strips in ash: Just advertising then I suppose.
     
  13. Dan Miller

    Dan Miller cranky canoeist Staff Member

    That is true, but subsequent catalogs show otherwise. This was a time of upheaval for the company, as Harry Rushton, who had run the company since his father's death in 1906, sold it to his brother Sidney in 1912. In 1915, Judd W. (Sidney's uncle and J. Henry's brother) became involved, Sidney quitclaimed his share, and Judd ran it as J. W. Rushton, Inc. until 1917. Two recessions and a world war pretty much did the company in.
     

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