Sharpies have rather gone out of fashion since they were the talk of the boating forums a decade ago, but I still think it’s worth reminding ourselves about these strikingly elegant North American craft.
This drawing of a typical New Haven sharpie comes from a Project Gutenberg eBook of Howard Chappelle’s classic study of the sharpie, The Migrations of an American Boat Type, which I first read on paper long ago.
I vividly remember the excited anticipation of waiting for it to arrive in an exotic foreign – but thanks to the Gutenberg Project folks you, dear reader, can obtain access to this stuff in a moment, and completely free of charge.
PS – I picked this up through reading the excellent US website Duckworksmagazine.com.
Computer model of 1883 Southwestern Greenland kayak
Paddlinglight.com website guru Bryan Hansel is publishing plans for traditional canoes digitised from material included in a classic book by Howard Chappelle and based on the work of Edwin Tappan Adney.
Here’s what Bryan has to say:
‘Each week this winter, I’m digitising a plan from the book Bark Canoes and Skin Boats of North America and releasing a set of station and stem plans for cedar strip builders on my website.
‘The plans that are currently finished are found here: http://www.paddlinglight.com/category/articles/free-kayak-and-canoe-plans I’m doing this hoping that these old designs, some not built in 100 years, get built, so we can compare the old designs to modern and see how kayaks and canoeing have changed.’
Plans examples already on the website from include a 1921 Southwest Greenland kayak dating from 1921 and 1883, and a Passamaquoddy ocean canoe of 1898.
Thanks Bryan! These are such elegant boat forms.
Two editions of the original Chappelle and Tappan Adney book are available from Amazon, here and here.