Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Bark Canoe with Painted Planking

Central New Brunswick Woodmen's Museum has an interesting decorated bark canoe. The catalogue info on Artefacts Canada's site doesn't list any dimensions but the the bark is painted brown with some decorative motifs as well as green planking & ribs on the inside. The list it as a "woodland canoe" that is dated somewhere before 1979. Here are some pics

Painted hull, ribs & sheathing

The gunwales are nailed rather than lashed, a common procedure in modern bark canoe building (See Ferdy Goode's Ash Gunwaled Canoe). But what really caught my eye is that there are no root lashings attaching the side panel bark. These pieces are nailed on as well as being positioned with the side panel overlapping the main hull sheet on top. Normally, I've seen this reversed so that water doesn't get forced into the seam. Don't know if the gum has since fallen off, but the seam doesn't have any waterproofing pitch.

Side panel seam & panel decoration

The ends seem to have a strip of canvas or other material to cover the cutwater edge as well as remnant marks of a crossed-lashing pattern. The small bit of bark folded over the edge is what is the Wulegessis, an Abenaki term for the protective bark cover that also served a decorative function. These tend to be found on East Coast origin canoes apparently.

Canvas covered ends

Just the interior and exterior painting alone make this a pretty unique canoe. If I'm ever out to the East Coast, I'd like to swing by this museum for a closer peek.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Newer Posts Older Posts Home Page