Thursday, May 30, 2013

Historic Paddle Photo: Gabe Tomah

Another historic pic featuring a large Eastern Woodlands style paddle...

Gabe Tomah at Grand Lake, New Brunswick
Photographer Unknown
. 1900

Saturday, May 25, 2013

In the Maine Woods (1909) - Paddle Flex

An article entitled "Exploring Maine's Waterways"  in the 1909 Edition of In the Maine Woods features a great pic of some guides with lashed canoes transporting a bulky item. What got my attention is the clear picture of the standing stern guide putting his weight behind the stroke. Check out the paddle flex under the strain.

Over the years I've moved away from stiffer paddles and have started to enjoy paddles with quite a lot of flex - not everyone's cup of tea for sure. Last year, I tried to make another paddle for tripping with a piece of Sassafras given this wood's flexible properties and relatively straight grain. It didn't end well with the paddle breaking right below the grip.

I've got another Sassafras blank cut from separate stock and am hoping to get started on that for the upcoming paddling season. It is a narrow shafted (1") twin of the c. 1900 Penobscot Replica also completed last year.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013 Paddle Making Workshop

Here are a few pics of a paddle making workshop held by CanvasCanoes over in Scotland (see previous post about them here). Really like the ridged & scalloped grip in the 2nd shot. The whole set of photos can be viewed on their facebook album.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Historic Paddle Photo: Maliseet Guide Resting

Here's a great shot dated to around 1900 showing a Maliseet guide leaning back for a pose in his bark canoe...

Lunt's Ferry near Fredericton, New Brunswick
c 1900
NBM (LS-AA242)

A grainy closeup of the paddle shows a rectangular grip area with some scalloped cutouts down to the shaft

Paddle Closeup

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Passamquoddy Elder Paddles

Came across this beautiful photo of Butch Phillips, a Penobscot tribal elder in a bark canoe with some traditional paddles...

Photo Credit: Brick Store Museum

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Passamaquoddy Porpoise Hunter Pic

Here's a nice pic of some Passamaquoddy canoes and a paddle from Gleason's Pictorial Drawing Room Companion dated to 1851.

Part of the caption reads:
The engraving illustrates a branch of Indian enterprise in Passamaquoddy Bay, on the coast of Maine. Summer travellers often see the Indians, in their frail canoes, in pursuit of the porpoises, which they shoot, and then most dexterously by the use  of their peculiarly barbed spear, take into the canoe and convey ashore, where they cut them up and try out the oil. Most of the oil in common use at Eastport and places along that coast, is from the porpoise, and nets the Indian about eighty or ninety cents per gallon. The picturesque appearance of the Indian fisherman in his light canoe, is very striking...

Similar pics featuring bark canoes and porpoise hunting can be see in this earlier post and another one here.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Nige Ayers' Decorated Centre Yoke

Fellow paddler blogger and pyrography artist, Nige Ayers of Simply Canoe has posted about a creative bit of canoe art - a decorated portage yoke. Here's a preview image below...

©Nigel Ayers

The single burn work was mostly done freehand and features some animal imagery chosen for their spiritual meanings. Really like how he has filled up the spaces with darkened patters and perfectly made use of the awkward contours found on curved centre yokes.

His full post entitled, "Pimp my Yoke", featuring more descriptive details and closeup pics can be read HERE

Well done Nige!

May 10th update: For those interested in seeing more of Nige's pyro artwork, check out his facebook page

Newer Posts Older Posts Home Page