Is it an old town?


New Member
I found a very old canvas covered canoe with wooden slat seats, diamond head bolts on the top thwarts and 4 oar locks on it. I found the numbers 7852 (I think) then a space and a #1 then possibly a #6 which would make sense since I think it's 16' long and has a berth of 41". Is it an Old Town? It needs new gunwales, a new bow deck and new canvas; is it worth trying to restore it or should I just cut in half and make book shelves out of it? It isn't a very pretty boat.
My guess is that you have an Old Town double ended boat model since the Old Town build record for 7852 shows an 18 foot long HW model that shipped in 1909. The dimensions are close as shown at from a period catalog. See and for some pictures of other ones. Can you post some pictures of the serial numbers and surrounding areas from each end? The build records for numbers 78520 to 78522 all show this model.

These scans and several hundred thousand more were created with substantial grants from the Wooden Canoe Heritage Association (WCHA) and others as you probably know well. A description of the project to preserve these records is available at [ if you want more details. I hope that you will join or renew your membership to the WCHA so that services like this can continue. See to learn more about the WCHA and to join.

It is also possible that you could have another number or manufacturer if this description doesn't match. Feel free to reply here if you have any other questions. Good luck with the restoration decision,



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New canvas, gunwales, and a deck are fairly ordinary repair/restoration items, and generally well worth doing. Restoring these items will turn a drab boat into one that is much more attractive. Seems to me that instead of turning a not very pretty boat into not very pretty bookshelves, you would do better to preserve and renew an unusual antique rowing boat.
There is a missing rectangle brass plate on the Bow Deck. I take some photos
and get exact measurements.
It came from Old Forge, NY so I believe it is the one from Rivets. I thought it was an Old Town. It fits this description of a 1923 Dark Green 16' canoe.