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Discussion in 'Serial Number Search' started by David Satter, Feb 23, 2018.
# 103871 Thanks
The Old Town canoe with serial number 103871 is an 8 foot long, AA (or top) grade, display model with red Western cedar planking and open mahogany gunwales. It was built between November and December, 1929. The original exterior paint color design was similar to the one shown at http://www.wcha.org/catalogs/old-town/designs/design03.gif which was known as the design number three. It shipped on December 16th, 1929 to New York City. This was returned for refinishing on January 24th, 1940. It was repainted with a design similar to the one shown at http://www.wcha.org/catalogs/old-town/designs/design37.gif which was knows as the design number 37 with Old Town in two inch gold script letters as shown on the back side of the card. This was then returned to New York City on February 13th, 1940. Scans showing both sides of this build record can be found by following the links behind the thumbnail images attached below.
These scans and several hundred thousand more were created with substantial grants from the Wooden Canoe Heritage Association (WCHA) and others as you probably know well. A description of the project to preserve these records is available at http://www.wcha.org/ot_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/about-the-wcha/ to learn more about the WCHA and http://store.wcha.org/WCHA-New-Membership.html to renew.
It is also possible that you could have another number or manufacturer if this description doesn't match your canoe. Can you supply any pictures or other details? Feel free to reply here if you have any other questions,
The owner is deciding weather to keep the canoe as is to display in his home or to have it restored back to original. canvas , paint and varnish. any thoughts would help. As to the value or rarity I'm also looking for some advise. Thanks
The usual answer starts with "It's your canoe..." but it is likely to be worth more unrestored. New ones are available from https://www.islandfallscanoe.com/inventory/category/1846 starting at $2800. That might be a better option if your customer wants a shiny one. Very few of these eight foot models have shown up in recent years so there aren't many comparable sales available to help determine a value. They are somewhat rare which is good news. The bad news is that the eight foot size makes them much more difficult to display than the four foot ones. These two factors will probably cancel out so the value is likely to be similar to a four foot model in comparable condition. I purchased the one shown at http://www.wcha.org/forums/index.php?threads/15276/ earlier this year. It has been cleaned up a bit but not restored since I prefer old things that look original. Roger Young will probably be along shortly and likely to offer a better answer to the restoration, value, and rarity questions. Let us know what your customer decides,
What a pretty thing... I'd imagine if it was restored it would lose a significant amount of its value. I think most of her charm is her current condition.
If I had a vote I would leave it alone. It's only original once. Granted it's had some work done to it back in 1940 but the work was done by Old Town and even that work is 78 years old. If it had significant broken or rotted wood or the canvas was gone a good case could be made to restore it but it appears that it's in decent shape and in my opinion should be left alone except for cleaning as Benson suggested.
The Penobscot Marine Museum (https://penobscotmarinemuseum.org/) has an eight foot model which has been repainted as shown below. I understand the donor's desire to restore it after abusing this model as a child but it might have been worth more if it had been left in original condition. I have a four foot model shown at http://www.stroudwater.biz/images/model.htm which also appears to have been used hard by a child. My plan is to leave it unrestored. Good luck with the decision,
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