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Thompson Hiawatha Decal

Discussion in 'Canoe Photo Index' started by martin ferwerda, Dec 28, 2009.

  1. martin ferwerda

    martin ferwerda LOVES Wooden Canoes

    I just picked up a Thompson Hiawatha, this one has the half ribs installed so that there is no gap between the half ribs and the full ribs. It also lacks the metal bracket under the decks, it instead has a wood block nailed under the decks.
    It also has the remains of a decal on the bow deck, I can see the last few letters, which look like "atha", which I assume is the last part of "Hiawatha" Any ideas about dating it by it having a decal? There is no sign of the brass or aluminum Thompson name plate.
     

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  2. Fitz

    Fitz Wooden Canoes are in the Blood

    Go for a ride?

    I dunno, but the dog wants to "Go for a ride"! :D

    Nice canoe. It will look great all fixed up.

    Fitz.
     
  3. Dave Osborn

    Dave Osborn LIFE MEMBER

    Martin,
    All Thompson's that I have seen here in the Midwest have had steel straps, as I'm sure is your experience. My guess is that the factory was out of them on that particular day or they were removed during a repair or previous restoration. Maybe they were hard to get during the war?? It's obvious that the block has been in there for a long time. In my opinion, the strap only serve as a convienience to hold the inwales together when on the form or when installing the decks. Do you use a similar strap on new canoes coming off of your Hiawatha mold??

    I have only seen a decal on a canoe that was built in the Cortland, New York plant, on an Indian Model that I bought in the Buffalo NY area. The decal was similar to the brass/aluminum tag that is on Peshtigo built canoes, except instead of Peshtigo, it said Cortland, NY. Also I have seen a couple of Thompson's with no evidence of ever having a metal tag or decal....And, believe it or not, a Thompson canoe wth a serial number on yet another style of aluminum tag.

    I think full width half ribs denotes an earlier built, but I'm not sure what years they went to narrow half ribs. I think Thompson's are well built, cool canoes!!
     

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  4. OP
    OP
    martin ferwerda

    martin ferwerda LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Hi Fitz, it is going to be a while before the lab gets to ride in this one, as it has a foot or two of missing plank, though he would more than likely prefer to be in the water than on it in a canoe.

    Dave,
    I do not bother with the metal straps, as it seems unnecessary, although it might have been done to reduce stress on the "mahogany" decks they used, possibly to help keep the deck from splitting over time. One of the decks on this canoe is split and I have seen other Thompsons with split decks even with the straps. This is the first one I have seen with a decal though, too bad so much of it is missing.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    martin ferwerda

    martin ferwerda LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Couple more images

    I cleaned up what is left of the decal with some thinner, so now part of "Manufactured by ... Bros" and what looks like the last part of Peshtigo, Wis can be seen.
     

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  6. thompsonboatboy

    thompsonboatboy LOVES Wooden Canoes

    COOL! I have never heard of or seen a decal on a Thompson canoe like this.

    Andreas
     
  7. Paul Miller

    Paul Miller Canoe Nut

    Another Hiawatha with a decal

    Hi Martin,

    I just picked up what I think is a very early Thompson Hiawatha. The owner told me he thought it was from the 20's or 30's.

    The canoe has the same shape decal on the deck as yours and it is a bit difficult to read but I think I see the beginnings of Hiawa....

    The first thing I did when I saw the canoe was check under the deck but found a piece of wood and not the usual metal bracket.

    The floor is fit tight and the ribs have sharp edges unlike ribs I've seen in later Thompsons. The canoe is in great shape and has a very unusual canvas repair that someone attempted some 40 plus years ago. The owner said the canoe was in the barn of the property his family bought back in the 50's.

    This may confirm that very early Thompsons had a wood block and not the metal bracket.

    I had shown these pics to Dave Osborn and he lead me to your post. That's what makes this forum so valuable.

    Thanks,

    Paul
     
  8. Paul Miller

    Paul Miller Canoe Nut

    First attempt to attach pics didn't work.
    Paul
     

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  9. OP
    OP
    martin ferwerda

    martin ferwerda LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Hi Paul,
    Your canoe looks like the same vintage as mine. For mine, word of mouth when I picked it up was it is a 1937, but the seat spacers had been removed and somebody had written on tape on the seat spacer "Thompson 1934". Mine has the sharp edge ribs also, likely they just beveled on table saw and then inverted the half ribs so the two bevels make a tight fit. Thompson had an interesting way of vertical goring on this canoe.
     

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  10. Dan Lindberg

    Dan Lindberg Ex Wood Hoarder

    Great string.

    Can it be moved to the Pic archive section?

    Interesting that they used the model name as the name name in the decal, rather than "Thompson" as in later placks.

    BTW, one I did a few years ago also had the "verticle goring", I thought it was strange at the time, and maybe done by a past owner but it looked the same as your pics.

    Dan
     
  11. Gil Cramer

    Gil Cramer The wooden canoe Shop, Inc.

    I've never seen any evidence of a decal on any Thompson canoe or boat, but I have seen wood under the deck very similar to Paul's photo, instead of metal once or twice. The vertical goring pattern was quite common and featured a cut almost through the entire plank about every foot or so.
     
  12. Dave Osborn

    Dave Osborn LIFE MEMBER

    I once had a Thompson Indian with a decal instead of the typical brass tag. I bought the canoe in the Buffalo New York area. The decal was similar in size and design to the brass tag, but instead of Peshtigo, Wisconsin, it said Cortland, New York. Wish I had photographed it.......
     
  13. OP
    OP
    martin ferwerda

    martin ferwerda LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Paul,
    In case you might be interested for your canoe, I made an attempt to re-create the decal, it is a rather rough approximation, especially the colors, and the font is not quite right. Here is a jpg one could use to print off a water slide decal.
     

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  14. Paul Miller

    Paul Miller Canoe Nut

    Thanks Martin,

    Looks good to me.

    Do you make decals for fun?

    How do you smooth out the edges of the type on "Hiawatha" or does that get fixed when you print it out?

    I'd pay you do make it for me and send it with a bill.

    Thanks,
    Paul
     
  15. OP
    OP
    martin ferwerda

    martin ferwerda LOVES Wooden Canoes

    Paul,
    The decal fonts get smoothed out in printing, I actually made it in an old copy wordperfect and it is hard to export out to a common format without some loss, but it is fairly easy to make. You can send me an email with your address using the forums "send private message" option when you click on the name, and I'll send you one as I printed off two, and do not need the second one.
     

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