Photos of 'freighter' sailing canoe
Some years ago, while returning to Ottawa, ON, from summer decoy auctions in southern Maine, I was driving through northern New Hampshire. It was a lazy Saturday morning, and I noticed a sign advertising a country auction. Curiosity compelled me to stop. The sale was for a deceased older couple who never threw anything away, including two older canoes and paddles. There was so much stuff, the sale lasted three days and it still wasn't over. Luckily, the canoes sold within the first 3 hours or so.
One was a large older canoe that was rumored to be an 'Old Town'; however, a little spit on the thumb, and a quick wipe, uncovered remnants of an early Chestnut label. With that, many of the locals lost interest, it being "just an old Canadian canoe" to them. Also, it was 19', very heavy, beamy and deep, and rigged for two sails, which were there, complete with masts and spars, though in tattered condition. If I could get it cheaply enough, I wanted it for presentation to the Canoe Museum. As it was, I had to talk a father and 12-year old son out of buying it as a restoration project. They were dreaming of camping and portaging. When I suggested they try to pick up one end, their visions of paddling/portaging merrily from lake to lake quickly evaporated. I did suggest they go after the other canoe, a 15 or 16 footer that made a lot more sense.
The photos show what I came back with: a Chestnut 19' Hudson Bay-type. It sat in storage at my nephew's for a year or so, until he rigged it up on the grass one day. Shortly afterward, Roger MacGregor took possession of it, in the course of his research on the Chestnut factory and its products. Later, it wound up at the Museum, courtesy of Roger, just as I had hoped all along.
Just thought you might enjoy the tale as well as the photos.