Serial number hunt


New Member
After more than 30 years in the garage, I am looking to restore an old wood and canvas canoe.

As I started to get familiar with everything that’s going on with the canoe, I noticed a serial number hang-stamped into the flor center board under the backseat. It is: 1108536 16 or 1L08536 16. The canoe is 16 feet long so I suspect that’s what the 16 is.

Does anyone have an idea where I could look-up the number. I also noticed that the bolts on the gunnels are diamond-shaped. There are brass tip protectors on both ends.



Unrepentant Canoeist
Pictures always help. It sounds like an Old Town, with the diamond-headed bolts, but the 7-digit number before the 16 is unusual. Could the "1" have been double-stamped?

Note that Old Town's diamond-headed bolts have turned up on restorations of other brands of canoes, so that's not always a definitive indicator...

And yes, the "16" indicates it's a 16 foot canoe.

Benson Gray

Canoe History Enthusiast
Staff member
Can you supply some pictures of the serial numbers from both ends and the bow deck? A double stamp on the first digit seems likely since a seven digit serial number would be very modern as Paul mentioned. The suggestions at may also help. My guess is that you actually have the Old Town canoe with serial number 108536. This is an 16 foot long, CS (Common Sense or middle) grade, Otca model with red Western cedar planking, open spruce gunwales, birch decks, birch thwarts, birch seats, and a keel. It was built between December, 1930 and August, 1931. The original exterior paint color was dark green. It shipped on May 17th, 1932 to Andover, Massachusetts. A scan showing this build record can be found below.

This scan and several hundred thousand more were created with substantial grants from the Wooden Canoe Heritage Association (WCHA) and others. A description of the project to preserve these records is available at if you want more details. I hope that you will donate, 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 the canoe. Feel free to reply if you have any other questions. Thanks,




New Member
BINGO Your response is amazing! My next-door neighbor in Andover Massachusetts, who would be well into his 100’s, gave it to me a while back.

We both abut what used to be Abbott Academy in Andover. Need I say more!

The canoe is now in Maine and I am not near it; so no pictures today. Perhaps after my good friend, Master Craftsman and dedicated outdoorsman, Ron Young from Waterboro Maine, restores it back to its original beauty. Knowing that it is a special piece and looks very sound, I gave it to Ron yesterday. The canoe now has a permanent home. He is one of the few people on the earth that will do justice to this beauty, in restoration, and on the water.

Post Abbot Academy History:
This canoe was purchased by Abbott Academy in May of 1932.

After some years of gentle and occasional use at Abbott Academy, the canoe was bought as used (sometime in the 1950s) from Abbott Academy by Ralph Wirtz, 31 Morton Street Andover, MA.

The canoe was passed on to Jim Krzywicki at 29 Morton Street, Andover, MA in 1995. Jim stored it inside and never used it.

On October 4, 2020, Jim Krzywicki passed the canoe on to Ron Young of Waterboro Maine.

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