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model canoe 'unicorns' do exist

Discussion in 'Scale and Miniature Canoe Models' started by Roger Young, Mar 1, 2011.

  1. Roger Young

    Roger Young display sample collector

    Here's proof that some other 'unicorns' of the 'sample' model canoe world do, in fact, exist. Seldom seen, but rumored to be 'out there', Chestnut Canoe Co. display models are some of the rarest. Here's proof the stories are real: 85" in length, 16" wide, 6" depth amidships, this would be half-scale for a full-size 14' factory issue. Closed gunwale, very early decals; likely made between 1910 - 1920.

    Attached Files:

  2. Andre Cloutier

    Andre Cloutier Firestarter. Wicked Firestarter.

    Wow is that incredible - thanks for posting it. Would look great next to my full sized closed gunwale! Would you give a brief description of its provenance?
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2011
  3. OP
    Roger Young

    Roger Young display sample collector

    Not a lot I can tell you Andre. The model is in Central Ontario, within an hour's drive of your door. It is not for sale. It was given as a gift to the late father of the present owner many years ago. He now treasures it, understandably, as a family heirloom. Not much is known of its earlier whereabouts. I'd love to have brought it home with me, but one has to respect 'family ties'. It was simply very lovely to see and appreciate. I thought others, like you, might enjoy seeing the photos. Dick Persson believes it's 'pre-fire', and has many early characteristics of Chestnut factory workmanship.

    If I had known about it earlier, I would have included it amongst those photos which accompany my article on early 'display' models, currently appearing in the February issue of Wooden Canoe. WC, somewhat regrettably, only could publish those photos in black and white, thus losing much of the impact. If folks wish, I could post some color photos of those other sample models on the Forum site. The version of the article that appears in H&FC magazine is longer, has a section on miniature paddles as well as on values and has additional color photos throughout.
  4. Kathryn Klos

    Kathryn Klos squirrel whisperer

    Great article in Wooden Canoe, Roger-- thanks for that, and for information on this new discovery. These little canoes are wonderful.

    If you can post color pictures here, it would not only be fun for us to see but might be something that would coax people to this website... some of our members wanting to see more, and folks who aren't members but who might decide to hang out and join-in. Topics here will show up in Google searches.

    I'd love to see the miniature paddles.

  5. OP
    Roger Young

    Roger Young display sample collector

    Thanks for the compliments. If I post the color photos that correspond to the Feb. article on display models, it might make more sense to do that under the Forum section for comments on the Journal - look for them there. It will require several postings to cover them all.
  6. chris pearson

    chris pearson Michigan Canoe Nut


    Thats friggin awesome!!!!! Love it, love it, love it.

    GREAT ARTICLE TOO!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love your passion Roger!!!!!!!:):):):):):):):)
  7. Dave Wermuth

    Dave Wermuth Who hid my paddle?

    I agree

    Yes, what they said.
  8. OP
    Roger Young

    Roger Young display sample collector

    Wonder of wonders ...

    Yesterday, I came across information on the existence of yet another 'display' model made by the Chestnut Canoe Co. I have received two photos, along with some basic measurements so far. This one appears to be in an original dark green color, and the overall dimensions would seem to be similar to the yellow model above. Thought I'd share this info here for all to enjoy.
    Roger DesktopCanoe.jpg CanoeDecal.jpg
  9. Dan Lindberg

    Dan Lindberg Ex Wood Hoarder


    Very nice, thanks for posting the info and pics.
    You must be living a charmed life. :)

  10. crosscuts

    crosscuts Crosscuts

    Thanks for the photos Roger. Looks pretty big with closed gunwales. How old do you guess?

  11. OP
    Roger Young

    Roger Young display sample collector

    R C:
    My guess (without having seen anything more than the two photos) is that this model is pretty much a 'twin' to the yellow one, above, which would make it about 7' long and probably constructed somewhere between 1910 - 1921 (pre-fire). I have known the owner (a decoy collector) for 20 years, but only recently came to learn that he had this model canoe sample. He is not familiar with the different makers, and asked if I knew who might have made it. Another of life's pleasant surprises! Understandably, he doesn't want to part with it. But, nice to have the photos, all the same.

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