An Old Family Member


New Member
My brother has been looking into having our Grandfather's canoe repaired. The gunwales and tips of the bow and stern are in bad shape, where they have been in contact with the ground over the years.

The history we have always been told was that our Grandfather bought this canoe when he was 18 (in 1924) from a fellow member of the DesPlaines River Canoe Club, in Maywood, Il. We didn't know the manufacturer or how old the canoe actually was, but we thought it might be an Old Town by the general shape and popularity of that brand, but were not sure.

In his investigations into having it repaired, my brother was told by one of the people he showed pictures to that it was probably a 'Merrimac' because of the "arrowhead" deck design. After some internet searches, I became pretty sure that it was made by the St. Louis Meramec Canoe Company. The dates all seem to pan out, the St. Louis Meramec Canoe Company started making canoes in the early 20's, and our Grandfather bought it in the 20's. Though I still have some doubts. Even if it was second-hand, it wouldn't have been that old and would have probably cost a lot of money for an 18 year old...

Unfortunately, we don't know the serial number. We have grown up using this canoe, and even helped our Grandpa refinish it, and neither of us remember seeing the numbers. We'll look again with near CSI intensity when we get back up to our parent's summer cottage where the canoe is stored in the garage over the winter.

Anyway, I just wanted to share our canoe with this group, since in my internet searching I discovered this group is very knowledgeable and passionate about these wonderful pieces of history.


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Welcome and yes, it appears that you have a Saint Louis Meramec Canoe as shown at and here. There are three of their catalogs available at or in the Historic Wood Canoe and Boat Company Catalog Collection if you want more information. Your canoe may be a Gasconade model with outside stems and half ribs. The prices for these started at $89.50 in 1925. Good luck with your research and keep us posted on what you find,

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