New here looking for help on an old town...i think


New Member
Looking for a bit of information. I bought an old wood and canvas canoe that after looking through tons of pictures and trying to find as much info as possible I think it is an old town HW. I'm hoping you guys can help me fill in some blanks.

It's 16' long 33" wide and 12 3/4" deep. The ribs are 2" and taper to 1.5" it has two seats and two thwarts. I looked for a serial number on both stems but all I can make out is what might be a six or a nine, or someone dropped something round in that spot. The boat does not have diamond bolts for the seats, it has wood plugs over the bolts. I think it's an old town from looking at other pictures but without a serial number I don't know.

I don't know much about older wood and canvas boats but this one looks like a pretty decent restoration start. There is an eye bolt at each end in the deck looks like maybe the boat was used for decoration more than used

Any help with information would be well helpful. I am pretty positive this will be my first wood and canvas boat I paddle in. Thanks Adam from MI


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I'm no Identification expert, but I'll offer a couple of suggestions...

If you can get good pictures of what's left of the serial numbers on the stems, post them... sometimes more eyes on the subject helps.

Also, you say you're in Michigan... MI has two very active chapters, so you should be able to find someone not too far away who can take a look at it, and make some informed observations. Look here: for contact info.

And don't miss the Upper Great Lakes Regional Assembly: Aug 25-27, which will be in Shell Lake, Wisconsin, this year. This event gets moved around every year, all around the Upper Great Lakes area, so even if you can't get there this year, it'll come around again. Watch the forum for Chapter Happenings: for more info, as paddling season opens up.

I'm sure others will chime in, who know canoes much better than I. It looks like it's in pretty nice shape!
The little clipped corners of the top of the ribs is one cue it's a Thompson. Good boat. I think they have brass tags on the deck. Look for the tiny holes where the little nails would have been.
Thank you very much for the info. From what I have read it's pretty hard to age a Thompson, is there anything I can look at to get me in the ballpark?

I did find the steel straps under the decks and the front seat hanger looks like a Thompson, so I'm sure you guys are spot on