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Canoe Id Help Needed

Discussion in 'Serial Number Search' started by Gnpgoat, May 30, 2018.

  1. Gnpgoat

    Gnpgoat New Member

    E7DECB59-5EAD-4BF8-84F2-40264E2D0F10.jpeg 70DC3A92-4A6A-4508-9777-F4C5A693D213.jpeg E4B04EC4-75F2-4C18-A31B-08D5A012F349.jpeg E5FC1CA4-F6E7-4875-B73E-403B632178C2.jpeg BA4156D3-4B0F-4C7A-8F69-E50F69B432F6.jpeg 07B6B90A-EB94-44AF-B0FA-6E5B82FFE3E9.jpeg 83EA1785-638C-4317-81FC-C8619F38D83B.jpeg You all know the drill: I picked this up today but I can’t identify it.

    This one is 17’ long, no outer gunwale, a cap over the gunwale that appears to be original and possibly oak, and the prior owner’s father n law recanvassed it but never painted it. The new canvas is wrapped over the decks so I can’t look for a badge or decals. The caps prevent me from looking for diamond shaped bolts.
    There is a serial number stamped into only the bow is clearly 27362. I did not see the typical Old Town length stamp after the serial number.

    I’m stumped. Is it missing the outer gunwale or was it built like that? Who made this one?
  2. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    Welcome and congratulations, my guess is that you have the Old Town canoe with serial number 27362. This is a 17 foot long, CS (Common Sense or middle) grade, HW (heavy water) model with red Western cedar planking, closed spruce gunwales, maple decks, maple thwarts, maple seats, spruce outside finish rails, and a keel. It was built in June, 1913. The original exterior paint color was dark green. It shipped on June, 30th, 1913 to Chicago, Illinois. A scan showing this build record can be found by following the link at the attached thumbnail image 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 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 your canoe. This is not the usual way to canvas a canoe as you probably know. The outer gunwales are missing and the rail caps appear to be replacements. This canoe was made before Old Town started using diamond headed bolts so you aren't likely to find any under the canvas. See for some pictures of how your canoe probably looked when it left the factory. Feel free to reply here if you have any other questions.

  3. OP

    Gnpgoat New Member

    Thank you Benson! I will definitely get a membership up at the WCHA. It’s my third and oldest Old Town to date. I just wasn’t sure because of the missing outer gunwale, the blue gunwale caps, and missing length number stamp.

    Is the length stamp there somewhere? Or is this before OT stamped the lengths?
  4. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    My guess is that you will eventually find the length digits under the paint. These were stamped by hand so there are occasions where they were omitted (or worn off). The examples below show serial numbers before and after yours with the length. Good luck with the restoration,


    24568.jpg 27719.jpg

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