16 6668

Leo Mroz

Curious about Wooden Canoes
any idea on this serial? I was told its from Maine built in 1904. but im not exactly sure if thats true. Ill post pictures if the numbers arent making sense


Pictures are necessary... and if it'll be a while before you can post them, a description of the deck shape and the location of the serial number would help.

Bear in mind that there are existing records for only a very few of the old canoe companies. A serial number can sometimes help narrow down a builder, but pictures say the most, in the majority of cases.

Looking forward to seeing what you have--

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As far as I can see, we may have the build record for your canoe! I was suspicious that it may not be an Old Town, as 4-digit serial numbers on OTs don't come up often.

Old Town 6668 is a 16 foot AA (top) grade Charles River model canoe which was finished between April 1907 and February 1908. It has red Western cedar planking and mahogany decks, thwarts, seat frames, and double gunwales. The double gunwales are a telling-feature of this canoe and your canoe appears to have them... plus your canoe appears to have the lines of the Charles River model... so this may be the correct record. The canoe was shipped to Cincinnati, OH, on March 4, 1908. If you are in the vicinity of Cincinnati, that might be the clincher.

I'll post a picture of the double gunwale, for everyone's information.

The scan of this record is attached below-- click on it to get a larger image. This scan and several hundred thousand others were created with substantial grants from the Wooden Canoe Heritage Association (WCHA) and others. A description of the project to preserve these records is available at http://www.wcha.org/ot_records/ if you want more details. I hope that you and anyone else reading this will join or renew membership in the WCHA so that services like this can continue. See http://www.wcha.org/wcha/ to learn more about the WCHA and http://www.wcha.org/join.php to renew.



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To assist identification, I'll post images from the 1909 Old Town Catalog (courtesy "The Complete Old Town Canoe Company Catalog Collection, 1901- 1993", available on CD from http://www.wcha.org/catalog/ and http://www.dragonflycanoe.com/cdrom.htm on the web.) showing the Charles River model and the double gunwale construction, with descriptive text.

Others here may have Old Towns of similar vintage and construction who can offer advice regarding restoration/conservation of this canoe. Nice find! Nice paddles too.



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Its amazing the canoe has stayed in Cincinnati all these years :) cant wait to take it out hehe
yeah i couldnt believe it when i read that.

did kathy post the build record already or is their a more detailed record?

thanks for the help

The build record is attached to post #4-- if there are questions, please ask. I did forget to point out that it seems the canoe didn't have a keel and was originally painted white.


I have an o8 OPEN gunwale and with the same scrolled seat hangers. I suspect you too have the beautiful, humped decks , typical of the earlier OT.

You were oh so fortunate to come upon the boat.....do it up right.

Mine is under cover at the moment, but I will try to send some pics later.
Dave D.
hmm the form does say no by "keel". but it has one on it...

ha compare my build record to thirsty's.

mine just might really be from hell

Im not sure if i have the humped decks could you see them in the pictures i put up?

Cant wait to see your 08

same boat close by

Hi Leo
I have the same model but 1910. It was previously restored and the original seats were swapped out for a sailing rig.I will like to get some details on your seats when I start working on it. In the mean time I am going to be taking some boats up to Columbus (I am in Athens) for The WCHA booth at paddlepalooza,April 30th and May 1st. I might take that boat if I have room. Close enough you might check it out.
sounds interesting. ill have to make a trip out there. if you want i could bring pictures of the seats for your you to compare with the one you got.