Old Town 25' War Canoe

The Old Town canoe with serial number 153936 is a 25 foot long, CS Grade, War Canoe model with red Western cedar planking, open spruce gunwales, 30 inch decks, a keel, outside stems, and a floor rack. It was built between February and May, 1950. The original exterior paint color was brilliant orange. It shipped on May 24th, 1950 to Mukwonago, Wisconsin. A scan of this build record can be found by following the link behind the thumbnail image attached below.

This scan and several hundred thousand more were created with substantial grants from the Wooden Canoe Heritage Association (WCHA) and others as you probably know well. Additional information about the project to preserve these records is available at http://www.wcha.org/catalogs/old-town/records/ if you want more details. I hope that you will renew your membership to 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.html to renew.

It is also possible that you could have another number or manufacturer if this description doesn't match your canoe. Feel free to reply here if you have any other questions.



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Hi Mark,

Sorry I missed your post and did not reply.

This was a canoe I am restoring for someone.

I have attached a few before pictures and a few after it was canvased. I'm not quite done yet. I have bent the new outwales and outside stems.

This canoe had a previous restoration started but then was hung for about 15years and got a bit out of shape as seen in the before pictures.



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There's something friendly and fun about a war canoe, despite a moniker that isn't very peaceful-sounding. It's the thought of all those people, paddling together... with the concept of "summer camp" thrown in. I'm hoping someone brings one to Assembly.
There is in fact a bible camp in northern MN with two of these guys hanging in the rafters of their main lodge/dining hall. Watercraft registration on the sides is from 97, so they've probably been immobile since then. I thought about asking the camp if they would ever consider selling their ceiling decoration, but chickened out. Besides, I don't think they'd fit on the top of my Saturn...
War Canoe for sale

I have a friend who has a 25' war canoe for sale. It was restored by Rollin thurlow several yeara ago. It has long decks, a floor rack, and is painted green. There is a trailer that goes with it. If anyone is interested, let me know. I will pass the information to him.
I think I saw the website where it is posted.

Does anyone build war canoes anymore? Some random builder in the backwoods of (insert state here) have some huge form? Are there patterns/lines? I suppose you could build one in the "one off" style if you didn't want to store a 25 foot (and incredibly heavy) form.
dumbquestionsguy said:
Does anyone build war canoes anymore? Some random builder in the backwoods of (insert state here) have some huge form? Are there patterns/lines?

I believe that the Old Town forms for both their 24 and 34 foot long war canoes still exist so someone could probably build one from those. The Old Town employees built a few from the 24 foot form in the last decade or so. I don't know of anyone else with patterns or lines. The person who has the last Old Town war canoe built at the factory recently contacted me looking for a buyer if anyone is interested.

34' War Canoe

I know of a 34 footer for sale with a trailer, (as of last summer). If someone is interested in one hell of a project, send me a Private Message and I'll get you the info.