Myron Smart

Dave Wermuth

Who hid my paddle?
Saw this on EBAY as others may also have.

300147612823

I am limited in my knowledge but am interested to know about the history of the builders and their canoes. It seems that this canoe may tell us Mr. Smart did not have access to alot of the finest quality cedar. I find the knots to be liberating for me. I always try to make each project better than the one before but in all reality if I were to try for perfection, I'd never get anything done. I'm astounded by the fine finishes I see on some canoes, but this one makes me think I don't have to feel bad if I can't quite get there.

I'd like to know more about Mr. Smart and his work. Who he is, etc. Clues?
 
He's on the list of Maine builders as working "1940s-70s". I'll attach a picture of the canoe so it'll be here for All to see even after it's sold on eBay. The seller says there are "no leeks", so if you like onions you may be out of luck.
 

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Myron

was a Maine Guide,Canoe builder and master in the art of poling a canoe. he was from Milo Maine he made a working man's canoe perhaps he did not use the finest of materials although they are readily available here , but he built a fine working canoe .
 
You can read a bit about Myron in Jerry Stelmock's "Building the Maine Guide Canoe".

Dan
 
Myron worked for years as a warden for Maine Fish and Wildlife. He was a reconized self taught expert on beavers and was indeed quite a guide and trapper. He built and sold a limited number of canoes each year with the help of his wife and family. He had just a very small shop with limited wood working equipment and built his boats with the idea that they were going to be working canoes. While for most of his building years the workmanship and materials he used were of decent quality, his canoes of his latter years were much rougher. He was a firm beliver of fiberglassing the hulls, not overly varnishing the insides, and not all peices needed to be sanded.
He was well known in the area and had fine reputation as a story teller and all around nice guy.
When Jerry and I were first starting out building canoes many locals would point out areas of our workmanship and tell us "Myron doesn't build them like that." as a way of telling us that maybe in another decade or so we might measure up.
Rollin
 
Thanks

Thanks for the history lessons guys. I pulled out the book and re-read the part on Myron.

I was fortunate and happy to have met Horace Strong and his wife Shirley a couple years ago. It seems there is much history to the w/c canoe. There also seem to be regional and individual variations. All very interesting.
 
Myron

another read on Myron would be
" ABOVE THE GRAVEL BAR"
by David Cook he has a chapter on Myron who lived next door to him ill try to scan what i can and send it along as the book is out of print
 
My dad has one of Myron's last 20' guide canoes and I have one of his 10.5' models. Myron was one of a kind and his canoes are things of great beauty as well as some of the finest working canoes ever made. Unfortunately, my dad is well beyond canoeing age (he gave up bush flying in Alaska at 89) and his 20' guide canoe, in mint, original condition, is to be auctioned on April 28, 2018 at Giguere Auctions in Steep Falls, Maine if anyone is interested in acquiring a truly unique wooden canoe. There is also the original bill of sale and many hand-written notes between my dad and Myron.
 
I just wandered back here and saw this. How fortunate to be able to have true working pieces of history and be part of it.
 
I am a descendant of Myron

Can you provide a more accurate estimate of when Myron was building canoes? The information at http://wcha.org/catalogs/maine-list.htm lists "1940s - 1970s" which seems likely based on the 1901-1984 dates shown at https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/79574103/myron-s.-smart on his grave stone. There is also a great article about him in the Wooden Canoe Journal issue number 159. This is available from http://www.wcha.org/store/back-issues if you don't have a copy. Thanks,

Benson
 
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