lb. silver plated, 7 ½” long x 3” wide x 2 ½”
FEATURING GAR WOOD'S
5th of 10 Miss America Boats Built by Gar Wood
WON HARMSWORTH TROPHY 1926
Miss America V Paperweight
known paperweight of a Gar Wood boat
…To appreciate the significance of this paperweight, you should understand that quality figural works of pre 1930 inboard powerboats hardly
much less ones of a notable boat....
advertising desk paperweight that I recently acquired would date from 1926 and celebrates the
"Miss America V" powerboat. The Miss America V, which
was the 5th of ten Miss America's Gar Wood made, was a very fast boat for it's day with a top speed of about 73 MPH. In 1926 it won the
prestigious British International Trophy, known as the Harmsworth
trophy for the United States, averaging 61.118 MPH over a 150 mile
course. The owner of the boat Gar Wood, piloted the boat with his mechanic Orlin
Johnson as co-pilot.
I'm always interested in the background, i.e. the who-what-where
of the sports antiques I acquire. I'm especially interested where
pieces have been over their life span. It's very interesting this
paperweight came from a
seller in Stockbridge, Michigan, about 70 miles west of Detroit,
where Gar Wood was based. So it came out of the Great Lakes region
which is the motherland of powerboating history...The seller said as much he got
it from a long time picker friend that lives close to him who had
it forty five years.
The paperweight was issued by
the “Wood Hydraulic” company which was part of Gar Wood’s umbrella of companies. For
anyone not familiar with Garfield Wood 1880-1971, he was a multi-millionaire industrialist from Detroit,
and also a world champion powerboat racer…He won five straight powerboat Gold Cup races, considered the world championship, between 1917 and 1921. He also won the
prestigious British International Harmsworth Trophy nine times
1920–21, 1926, 1928–30, and 1932–33. The Harmsworth Trophy was
essentially the Americas Cup of powerboat racing, so when
Gar Wood won it, the United States was technically considered the
HISTORY OF THE HARMSWORTH
The Harmsworth was the first annual international award for motorboat racing. Officially, it is a contest not between boats or individuals but between nations. The boats were originally to be designed and built entirely by residents of the country represented, using materials and units built wholly within that country. The rules were somewhat relaxed in 1949 and may have been relaxed further since. The race was founded by the
English newspaper publisher Alfred Charles William
Harmsworth in 1903.
GAR WOOD EMPIRE
Wood started in business about 1911 after he invented a hydraulic lift for trucks to unload coal…Thereafter his enterprise mushroomed into a large conglomerate of divisions all under the umbrella of “Gar Wood Industries”…He made so many industrial products that benefited the United States and made America great that it
would be hard to count them all….From garbage trucks to heating systems to powerboats to
supplying trucks and boats to the U.S. military during WW II…
SOME OF THE COMPANIES UNDER THE UMBRELLA OF GAR WOOD INDUSTRIES
G.A. Wood & Co., 1908-1911: Wood Hydraulic Hoist Co., 1912-1914; St Paul Minn.;
- Wood Hydraulic Hoist & Body Co., 1913-1933; Gar Wood
Ind. 1922-1971; Detroit, Michigan & Wayne, Michigan;
- Gar Wood Industrial Division of Gar Wood Ind.; Gar Wood Boat Division of Gar Wood Industries, Marysville, Mich.;
- Gar Wood Division of Sargent Industries 1971-79; Gar Wood
Div. of Clement Industries, 1979-pres.; Minden, Louisiana
- Detroit Marine-Aero Engine Co., Detroit, Mich.;
- Hydraulic Hoist Mfg. Co., St. Paul, Minn.;
- National Lift Company, Waukesha, Wisconsin; United Metal Craft Co., Ypsilanti, Michigan;
- Phil Wood Industries Ltd., 1922-1971; Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Wood was known as an inventive genius who, at one point, held more US patents than any other living
American. In 1897, at age 17, he invented a downdraft carburetor which enabled his inspection boat to outrace the other inspectors. In 1911 or 1912 he invented the profitable hydraulic hoist for dump trucks. He used the money it earned to build racing boats which won many championships between 1917 and 1933.
DETROIT CULTURE C1910
Of note is the fact
Gar Wood was Detroit based…There could not have been a better place for him,
considering his ability…Detroit was at the pinnacle of the industrial revolution in America
when he started out in 1911…the automobile was selling like hot cakes…Industry in Detroit grew at the same rate people
started understanding the possibilities of the gasoline engine….Many business
sprung up to support the auto industry….glass windshields,
upholstery, electroplating, widgets galore…Personnel and jobbing out were often intertwined…In
modern terminology it could be described as a network intensive
industry...bodies made to order for company A were supplied by company B…seats and interiors jobbed out…acquisitions were not uncommon…Chrysler buying dodge…etc…it was like the wild west of manufacturing…The gasoline engine seemed to inspire the creativity in people…there were cars made in Detroit back then by companies you’ve probably never heard of…I bought a large photo of an
Everitt race car earlier this year which introduced me
to early Detroit manufacturing culture…
The automobile blew that city wide open and Gar Wood was right there….And when it came time to play…he played like he worked in
his same successful fashion…he loved his powerboat racing…and he had
the money to make it happen…On top of all that he was the commodore of the Detroit Yacht Club…home of the Gold Cup
many years…The best summarized biography I’ve found online for Gar Wood is on
coachbuilt.com, link below…a very remarkable site…
Getting back to the star of this show…To appreciate the significance of this paperweight, you should understand that quality figural works of pre 1930 inboard powerboats hardly exist...much
less ones of a notable boat...Quality figural works meaning fine art bronze sculpture, and advertising art such as this. Figurals of race
boats can be found on trophies but most would be outboards after 1930…And in the realm of sports display antiques,
speaking subjectively, the figural is a primary category...So acquiring this figure for my collection was an important addition...In thirty five years collecting I have only seen one other example, though not in person...A gentleman in Sydney Australia posted a photo on Facebook of one he
had...He said he got it in New
heck?...go figure...The seller I got mine from said Worthpoint referenced six examples…so if that’s correct basically that makes about eight known…Though mine is the only one I've actually
seen in person...
OTHER EXAMPLE CARLTON HAS SEEN - FOUND ON FACEBOOK
...Or I'll put it this way...Lot's of people buy cars...but very few buy fleets of cars...and in turn....very very few buy fleets of garbage trucks, or buses, or dump trucks...the products Gar Wood made....So....very very few people may have gotten these paperweights...
EXAMPLES KNOWN - V RARE
mentioned, purportedly there are only about eight known
examples of this paperweight... I speculate the reason so few: Wood Industries made and sold industrial
products to manufactures...not
the public...So it may be they only gave them to a limited number of
select clients. Take for instance, a
company that made bearings for machinery...Say they needed twenty hydraulic
presses to make their bearings...They called Wood Industries and
Wood sent a rep to take the order...Once the hydraulic
presses were shipped, maybe they sent along one of these
paperweights as a thank you...Then that companies purchasing
agent put it on their desk...Which is ingenious
since the next time
the purchasing agent needed a hydraulic
press no way would they forget Wood Hydraulics as the name was in
front of them eight hours a day...
I'll put it another way...Lot's of people buy cars...but very
few buy fleets of cars...and in turn....very very few buy fleets of
garbage trucks, or buses, or dump trucks...the products Gar Wood
made...So...very very few people may have gotten them...Its all just
getting back to that purchasing agent...Let's say thirty or forty
years go by...and the agent retires....they clean out
their desk and the company let's them have the paperweight for
what ever reason and they take it home as a memento...or
they abscond with it...Or say the
company goes into foreclosure for what ever reason...The
paperweight and other contents go in a bin with of other office equipment and
get auctioned off...In these scenarios I see children
eventually getting hold of them...and ending up in toy
boxes...That's why I'm very impressed mine still has the lid over
the paperclip well...Bottom line is....until such circumstances like
these were played out the paperweight never saw the light of day as far as the public
was concerned....I would speculate such scenarios could partly explain why they are so
rare. Again its just speculation, but food for thought...
The 1939 book, "Speed Boat Kings, 25 Years of International Speedboating" by J. Lee Barrett, gives much insight into Gar Wood and talks about the Miss America V in Chapter 8, "The French Challenge"...The title pretty much sums up how the 1926 Harmsworth race came about...but it was a huge flop...
HARMSWORTH RACE - WHAT REALLY HAPPENED
boat featured on the paperweight is the Miss America V. It's claim
to fame was winning the 1926 Harmsworth Trophy. Here's the back
story how it went down...Between
1920 and 1933 Gar Wood had won the Harmsworth Trophy nine times, with
ten different versions of Miss America he built…The reason so many was they wore out after a year or two from
stress…then they were stripped for parts…All
ten Miss America's were numbered with Roman numerals. Therefore the
"V" on the version featured on the
paperweight indicates it as the 5th boat of the series. The 1939
book, "Speed Boat Kings, 25 Years of International
Speedboating" by J.
gives much insight into Gar Wood and talks about the Miss America
V in Chapter 8, "The French Challenge"...The
title pretty much sums up how the 1926 Harmsworth race came
about...but it was a
huge flop...Somewhere around 125,000 to 250,000 people came to
watch the regatta on two different days. However... the Frenchman Henri Esdres could not get his
boat "Excelsior-France" started either day...and the crowds went home
without seeing a race...
TIMELINE OF RACE
for the whole story of the 26' race I'll review the time-line...To
begin with...in 1926 the
U.S. had been in possession of the Harmsworth since 1920. Gar Wood
won it then... and again in 1921...Then for the next four years no
one made a challenge...Then in 1925 a Paris department store owner Henri Esdres
called for a race. He had built a boat called the "Excelsior-France".
However it caught fire and never made it to the United States, so
there was no race in 1925. Then the following year 1926 Henri Esdres
again made another challenge with a new boat...Apparently Gar Wood
was miffed over the money he spent getting ready for the 1925 race
that never happened...At first he said he wasn't building a new boat
for the 1926 challenge...but would race the ones he made the year
before...Upon confirming the new "Excelsior-France" had
been shipped and was on it's way, Gar changed his mind and had Miss
America V built in just two weeks...To reiterate, that would be the
boat on the paperweight...
BIG HUGE SNAFU
Monsieur Esdres arrived but on the day of the race Saturday
September 4th he had mechanical problems and the race was postponed
until the following Tuesday September 7th...So then on that Tuesday
his mechanical problems continued when he ran out of compressed air
to start his engine...W. D. Edenburn, chairman of the race
committee, acting as liaison between Wood and challenger
Esdres asked Wood if he could help get some compressed air...which
was against the rules, but Wood waived the rules and sent his team
to help...Long story short they never could get it to start....so
the 250,000 people that came to watch the race left...The following
day...they towed the "Excelsior-France" to start it
without compressed air...they got it going and to the starting line
but the engine stopped mid race and Miss America V....(featured on
the paperweight)...won...Not much of a race but Wood did win fair
IT ALL HERE
thanks to Mr. Leslie Field...
book "Speed Boat Kings, 25 Years of International
Speedboating" states Gar Wood spent $50,000.00 in two years
getting ready for the challenge...That would be his cost for
producing three boats, the Miss America III, Miss America IV, and
Miss America V. That would be about $850,000.00 in today's money
adjusted for inflation...So based on $50,000.00 for three boats...That would
be about $16,660 per boat...or around $280,000.00 per boat today AFI
...So no wonder he was not happy with Monsieur Esdres for not
showing up for the 1925 race...
FEW EPIC BOAT SIGNS CARLTON HAS SEEN OVER THE YEARS
Sold Matthews Auctions $6,250
...This few and far between status for early boat advertising is part
of the reason this paperweight is kind of a big deal...
advertising pieces for Gar Wood boats are practically non-existent.
By important I refer mainly to factory issued signs and displays.
Historically the big four powerboat companies were, Gar Wood, Hacker
Craft, Dodge, and Chris Craft. I
have never seen an advertising sign for Gar Wood boats, or Hacker
Craft save for a small Gar Wood poster I have from a marina at Lake
Hopatcong N.J. I've
only seen a few great Chris-Craft signs surface. I've seen one Dodge
Boats sign which I got outbid on in April 2022. This few and far
between status for early boat advertising is part of the reason this
paperweight is kind of a big deal...
ARE THE PERFECT EXCUSE TO DISPLAY SMALL SCULPTURAL WORKS
WOOD AND HIS TEDDY BEAR FOLLY
He came back in a moment holding his two teddy bears, Teddy and Bruin, in the fingers of his right hand. "Here's the reason," he said, seriously.
"These, THESE are the captains of my fate-mine and
The Teddy Bears in their early years were a victory charm. Wood played with them like a boy.
But now he talks to them seriously, believes in them. One day, just a few minutes before an important race, Wood was sitting next to Johnson in the cockpit of his Miss America, waiting for the moment to dash out on the course. He picked up his Teddy Bears, held them up, and,
without a smile, said to them, "Can you bring us through this time?"
And they both seemed to nod their heads and say,
"Yes, Boss; yes, we can.".
Chapter 1, Pages 22-23
Speedboat Kings : 25 Years of International Speedboating
by J. Lee Barrett
22, Par. 3
Just before I left Wood's home that night I asked him one more question. We were standing near the door. My hand was already on the latch. "How is it, Mr. Wood," I said, "how is it you're alive today?"
"Don't you know?" he asked. And then, suddenly, he had gone back to where we'd been sitting.
I stood there, waiting and wondering.
He came back in a moment holding his two teddy bears, Teddy and Bruin, in the fingers of his right hand.
"Here's the reason," he said, seriously. "These, THESE are the captains of my fate-mine and Johnson's."
For thirty years Wood has been tying these teddy bears to his engines. A fortune cannot buy them from him. After he won the Harmsworth Trophy in England in 1920, an Englishman offered him Ł1,000 for one of them. Wood refused the offer.
Wood stole these teddy bears thirty years ago-from Mrs. Wood, his wife. She had bought the first one for fifteen cents in St. Paul, Minn., where they lived. When Wood saw it in their home he took it and put it in his first
raceboat, Little Leading Lady. He won every race with that boat.
Mrs. Wood bought another. Wood stole that one, too.
When he built his Miss Detroit II, Mrs. Wood saw her lost teddy bears for the first time. She made each of them a cork life-saving jacket, a bathing cap, rubber-soled shoes. She even stuffed their ears with
23, Par. 1
batting to keep out the thunder of the engines. She gave them to Wood and asked him to put them into his new boat, for luck.
Wood smiled and tied them to his engines.
But Mrs. Wood fondles them as her own, as indeed they are. She dries them out when they're pitched overboard, dresses them up again. Wood will never go out on the river in his fast boats without them. The only time he ever lost a race was when his son, Gar, Jr., gave one of them to his opponent. Nearly every time he went out without them, something happened. Once it was a broken gear box, another time a split cylinder. Six thousand dollars . . . $10,000 . . . $25,000, a fortune cannot buy them from him. They have become a devotion to him. Every race thickens the halo about their fuzzy little heads.
It wasn't thus when boat racing was fun and a catapult meant nothing more than a good solid drenching. But when Wood stepped his boats up to 8o . . . 100 . . . 125 miles an hour, he began to get serious about these Teddy Bears. Boat racing began to look like suicide and mere sportsmen began to fear these fast boats.
The Teddy Bears in their early years were a victory charm. Wood played with them like a boy. But now he talks to them seriously, believes in them. One day, just a few minutes before an important race, Wood was sitting next to Johnson in the cockpit of his Miss America, waiting for the moment to dash out on the course. He picked up his Teddy Bears, held them up, and, without a smile, said to them, "Can you bring us through this time?"
And they both seemed to nod their heads and say, "Yes, Boss; yes, we can."
I'm continually surprised at Wood's wealth of technical knowledge, his humor, his possessing manner. And yet, when he steps into the cockpit of his fastest boats he seems quixotic to the point of madness. It's something in his blood and in the blood of his men.
Wood told me the most dramatic story of the sea I'd ever heard. It's the story of his Harmsworth races from 1928 to 1933, when the battle for the Trophy became not the battle of two individuals but the battle of nations.
The story will be told in its proper place.
TABLES UP - FINAL APPROACH
Wrapping this up I’ll mention….over the years…when reading about Gar Wood I was always very disappointed in a ritual he had…He always
brought two little teddy bears with him on
his boats when he raced…He said as much they brought him
and he was quite serious, see
the italicized,…Stupid little bears I thought…he’s playing with his life out there and he’s putting his trust in two fetishes/charms…God hates charms/fetishes…it’s a serious deal with Him
in the bible…He doesn’t like it…He wants you trusting in him…Cute little
story for the papers to print…but I didn’t care for it all…So then I’m reading his bio on coachbuilt.com and I read where ¾ thru his life he got struck by lighting and lived on April 29th 1944…two others with him were also hurt…Then ten years later on May 14th 1954 his
so-called "unsinkable" boat Venturi sank in rough waters off the Bahamas…Then he died seventeen years later…Kind of remarkable near death experiences for someone that regularly took his life in his
racing powerboats…Those were
probably messages from God…I hope he accepted Jesus before he died
and repented of that…
bid $510.00...went for $540.00
Hi Carlton, good to hear from you... No, I don't have that tin. Extreme rare. And no other tins like that.
weekend report....I got outbid on this rare c1925
advertising tin on Saturday for Pascall's candy...out of
Morford's Auction...I gave it all I could so I don't
feel bad...but it would have gone great in my tin
collection...It's an English tin...I had never heard of
Pascall's but it's a major brand that started in London
in the 1870's.....then migrated to Australia and New Zeeland...still around today...This
is a rare tin....it's the only example I've ever
seen...I checked with my Euro tin sources Jan Goedhart
and Nigel Scott the two biggest dealers in European tins
and they both confirmed as much it's rare...Nigel
speculated this may have been the same example he sold
on eBay for $475.00...My take once again...good boat
stuff prices are nuts...I've seen boat signs go way over
the top I would have expected...I would speculate why
this tin is so rare is children would play with
them...then typically the tops would get separated and
lost...and eventually they would be discarded...The
colors really make it...Navy, yellow and red...
Picked this up in an auction in Belgium…friend tipped me off to it…I prefer American but this was too cool to pass up…These city to city races were popular with motorcycles and autos in the teens and twenties in Western Europe…I gather this Liege to Paris to Liege race was a major race…but I’ve had a hard time researching it because I don’t know the go to people in Europe and the language barrier….the three major languages spoken in Belgium are Dutch, French, and German…Liege was I think the second largest city in Belgium next to Brussels…ya learn a lot collecting!…I think most Americans find this all curious but from what I’ve seen motorcycle racing was no less popular in Europe than it was here…maybe more so…Italy, Germany, France….they were all motorcycle crazy back in the early days of the teens and twenties…Below are some key questions I would like to learn about this statue.
1. Was it a trophy?
2. Was it a souvenir?
3. Who made it?
4. How many were made?
5. Were similar statues made for other races?
6. How many contestants competed in the race?
7. Who won the race?
of 9/20/22 post - 1921 plaster motorcycle statue
So yesterday I get up at 5:15 A.M. and drive 2 ½ hours to a western
antiques show in Nevada City CA…all that time, missed sleep, and not
to mention $gas$...and all I got was a motorcycle sheet music for $40.00…Hit
the one store in nearby Grass Valley….zero…hit couple shops in
Marysville…zero…and that was it…off to grocery shopping and back
home…up at 8:00 A.M. and drove 45 min. to a bottle show in Santa Rosa
CA…zilch zero…nada…So fine…I head home and stop in Calistoga CA…went
to an antiques store I used to stop at and was turned into some kind of
wine tasting deal with a few wine antiques as props…I guess…So
across the street is some funky antiques shop in an old home…I walk in
curious since the whole antiquing landscape seemed to have changed since
I last was there…maybe two or three years…So I walk up in the porch
area and there’s a 12ft. c1920 decorated English college sweep oar
hanging…cool but the blade was ¾ gone worn away…the fragment left
still had the painted times…interesting but no…so I mosey around and
stroll into a room and see this Cricket Goods advertising sign…talk
about hit ya between the eyes when you’re not expecting it (it was the
Lord no question)…I was so worn out from the last couple days looking
for something…I was dazed and just stared at it like is this a joke…So
I buy it and cart it off to my truck…drove to a shady park area where
I could examine more…shooting text photos to my buddy Ryan Sims down
in Yorba Linda…sharing the excitement while confirming it’s real not
a re-pop…Ryan goes…get it out of the frame…so I get home and undo
the weird 1980’s metal frame and pop it out…my gosh it was real as
rain…the back and edges said it all…sigh of relief…I could feel
the gentle rain of dollar bills floating down on me…as I bought it
right…But it’s a keeper I think…as I told Ryan…if you’re gonna
have a cricket sign, which I don’t collect…this is it…the embossed
lettering is very defined almost 1/8” deep…
have a mountaineering themed cognac sign about the same c1900 vintage
that’s almost exactly the same size and v similar color
lithography...except its a horizontal format…So now I have two great
graphic European, off the reservation, sports signs of similar size and
format…sort of a pair…
Thanks for replying. I read your blog about the sign. Great to hear the back story, you are one lucky guy.
I had the cricket sign years ago. I bought both The Football one & cricket one from a local antiques dealer. The guy had cleared out an old shop, years back, in my town ( Olney, UK)
The Football one ( which I still own) had been slightly trimmed on the bottom & had been used to board up an attic window in the shop.
The cricket one was in excellent condition. I foolish sold the cricket one about 25 years ago because I was broke & needed the money. The buyer (luckily) didn’t want the Football one. Which is now displayed proudly in my office.
I had another sign from the same antique dealer. It’s a card sign, but a lovely image & also from Bryan’s. Pic below.
of 9/18/22 Latest Greatest - Cricket Goods Sign
was a heck of a weekend for collecting....Started Friday Sept. 9th with
the Pacific Coast Gas Bash held at Fred Stokes place in Santa Rosa Calif...Then
Sunday 9/11/22 I hit the French antiques Market at the Marin Civic Center
parking lot...found nothing zeroed out...But went
to a very nice church afterwards about 3 minutes away...Bay Marin
Church...nice visit friendly people...and they had a taco feed after
service...Afterwards stopped at Urban Ore in Berkeley before heading over
to my friend Pat Nester's home in San Francisco to buy an important
Billiard Parlor sign purchased at Sept 2022 Pacific Coast Gas Bash
token for Walker's Billiard Parlor purchased on eBay post gas bash
to the Friday Gas Bash...I was up at 4am...got there 6:00am with a
flashlight...Really I wouldn't call it a bang-up show....it was
good...but I think the heat wave Northern California had that week
put a dampner on
it...not as big a crowd I expected and seemed like there should
have been more dealers...Nevertheless it was fun....and I did make
find from renown sign dealer Bob Porter from Cypress,
Disneyland...He always lays out his whole arsenal of great signs
on tarps on the ground...I spotted this billiard parlor sign at
6:20 A.M....twenty minutes after I got there....but I didn't buy
it for another hour...the price was more than I could swallow...I
came back later and made an offer...Bob is such a gentleman he
just calmly said "Carlton I paid more than that, it came out
of a collection"...I went away for a bit and decided to just
go get it...Where in the world would I ever find another billiards
sign from Chico...There are a lot of collectors of historical
northern California signs and I figured I could find a buyer if I
decided to sell it...
typical at these early morning shows, I'm not a morning person and
was still waking up...So I bought it in a bit of a fog...But as I
came to walking the show I realized what a great piece it was and
I was glad I bit the bullet...It's what's called a tacker...my
first one...as they are light weight metal and theoretically you
can hang them up with tacks...That's nice and all but I think I
want the edges protected so I plan to get it framed...a black
frame with set it off well I think...It's one of those buys the
more I look at it the more I'm glad I got it...Researching it was
remarkably easy...I even found a photo of the inside of the
on to the motorcycle poster...after a quick stop at Urban ore in
Berkeley I headed over to Pat's apartment in San Francisco...A friend of his got this poster
in Michigan...where the race was...I'm always interested in early
motorcycle posters but this one is for the national
championship...The Jack Pine Run was the championship for enduro
racing for the United States from 1923 until the early
1960's...Endurance racing is a different ball game than track
racing...very demanding riding thru back roads....forests and
waterways...very rugged...I have antique motorcycle race posters,
which are rare...but this was a chance to add enduro racing in my
collection...A photo of Oscar Lenz is featured on the poster. He
was one of the founders of the race and won it seven times...
kept wondering who Jack Pine was…I figured he must have started
the race or something…turned out Jack Pine is a type of pine
tree from the region…So I believe the race is named Jack Pine
because the course is laid out thru a terrain of Jack Pines...
while I was at Pat's he pulls out this killer little powerboat
program that I had to have...For the uninitiated 1915 powerboat
racing programs don't surface often...and I was real glad to add
this to my powerboat collection...It's a very positive thing with
boats...you can often research them by the names and numbers on
their bow...I wish I had time to do some deep research on the
boats referenced in this program...FYI...1915 was essentially
right after the hydroplane was introduced about 1912....leaving
behind the era of dispersion type powerboats that plowed thru
water not over it like the hydroplane...So we're talking pioneer
era of powerboating here...
of Sept. 2022 Gas Bash Weekend Coverage
Pickup August 25th 2022 - Powerboat Stained Glass Panel
my latest greatest...Now this would be a perfect example of you just
don't know what's out there...never would I have imagined such a
piece...it's my first stained glass in 35 years collecting...The older
gentleman I got it from was the Detroit suburb of Garden City...His
daughter acted as my contact person. He was told it came from the
legendary Gar Wood mansion on Grayhaven Island...that would be Gar Wood
the legendary Detroit industrialist and world champion speed boat
racer...However...as exciting as that story was...based on the T
41 bow number the story just didn't add up...If someone was going to
make a stained glass of Gar Wood in a speed boat it would be of him in
one of the ten Miss America boats he won the world championship with
nine times 1920-1933. His $3,500.00 price was based on it being Gar
Wood...so I tactfully sent the email below:
Detroit Suburb of Garden City, from whence our stained glass hails.
Sat in basement 40 years after purchased in Detroit antiques store
Hendricks here…I’m a collector of early powerboat racing and
really like your stained glass…However I cannot connect the
T-41 on the boat with Gar Wood…Gar Wood won all his
championship races with the Miss America boats…there were ten
of them…all with Miss America followed by the roman numeral of
its linage…i.e. “Miss America VII…Miss America VIII…etc….I
can’t find any boat titled T-41 associated with Gar Wood…So
it’s a mystery to me…nevertheless I’m making a $REDACTED$
offer as it’s still great looking…
sellers daughter called and said as much thanks for the offer but her
dad felt it was worth much more than my offer...I asked her to find out
what the least he would take...She came back with $3,000.00...I was
leaving shortly for a vacation to L.A. for the Glendale show and Long
Beach Flea...and 3g's would be a vacation killer...so I said as much I'd
revisit it after I got back...So I hit L.A. hard over the
weekend....found nothing...so Sunday afternoon I texted an
offer...Seller countered...and I re-countered and we made the deal...To
get to the bottom of its history I enlisted the help of renown
hydroplane historian Leslie Field.
Sent: Tue 8/23/2022 8:01 PM
Carlton Hendricks here…I just got the attached stained glass
work featuring a powerboat that appears to be from about the
1920’s…the bow number on the boat is T41…I’m hoping to
ID the boat with that…
The stained glass came the Detroit area…the seller purportedly
bought it in an antiques store 35-40 years ago and it was in his
basement since then as I understand…the seller was told it was
salvaged from the Gar Wood Mansion in Gray Haven Island…after
it burned I assume…and the pilot is purportedly Gar Wood…However
I cannot find any boats associated to Gar Wood with the T41 bow
number…Q. Would you have any insight into the identity of the
I found a photo of a boat with the bow number T-46….see
attached…Q. What do those numbers signify?...
The stained glass should arrive in a few days…I will take
better photos then…
Thanks so much for any help you could be….
Most Kindly -carlton
Only took a couple hours
to hear back...
Tue 8/23/2022 10:11 PM
This one was easy. T-41 was Musketeer II, owned and raced in
1923 and 1924 by Horace Dodge. I didn’t notice a direct Gar
Wood connection. The numbers on the bow are just racing numbers
designating the racing class. “T” was the prefix for the
senior level of motorboat racing at the time. Dodge won several
races with this boat. Dodge was a rival of Gar Wood and raced
against him with this boat. Musketeer II sank in June 1925. I
have no info whether it was salvaged or its later fate.
Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1558238831117830/
Vancouver, BC Canada
three biggest names in early powerboats in the United States were
Chris-Craft…Hacker Craft…Dodge…and Gar Wood…all from the Great
Lakes/Detroit region…There were some very formidable Canadian boat
makers on the other side the lake as well… Ditchburn…Greavette…and
Minett to name a few…not that I know much about them…Horace Dodge Jr
was the son of Horace Dodge Sr. who with his brother John started Dodge
Brothers Automobiles…Jr. was a party animal with a life that reflected
it…Jr.’s Dodge Boat company was killed off by the depression in 1936…his
father was one of the biggest yachtsmen of the day…had a whole string
of huge ones….
At this point we can only speculate the who what why this stained glass
panel was produced…Horace Jr. could have had it made but seems like
someone of his means would have ordered something bigger…Perhaps it
was a gift someone had made for him…and it hung in his den…The art
quality of the boat and faces are so well defined I would almost bet it
was done by a professional artist…As well the details of the boat are
too exact…I see two air intake cowls above the engine compartment area…I
clearly see two tie down cleats…a cooling water discharge port of some
sort…what looks like a bow light at the front…between the tie down
cleats is some kind of object I can’t make out…almost look like a
fishing rod holder…but seemingly in the wrong place…The shadowing of
the coats the two men are wearing is so well done I would speculate it
would take a professional artist to execute…If it was given as a gift…it
would likely have been from some wealthy playmate who would have likely
had it made at the top stained glass shop in Detroit…which appears to
have been the Detroit Stained Glass Works on West Fort Street…Once the
book I ordered Discovering Stained Glass in Detroit by Nola Huse Tutag
arrives perhaps will help I.D. the artist…
The best Dodge Boats history site in the world is http://www.thatoldboat.com/Dodge-Boa
...-Factories-Det ...there are tons of photos of the boats and factory
from back in the day. The operator/owner Steve Martini has done a great
job of preserving the history of the company...along with first hand
accounts of pioneer research trips on foot to locate the
buildings...don't miss it...
- Latest Pickup August 25th 2022 - Powerboat Stained Glass Panel
you ever seen interesting props in the background of a movie? For me it
all started when
got back from Massachusetts last May after attending the Brimfield
Antiques Fair. I rented some movies about Boston just to see if I could
spot any sites I'd seen there. I particularly wanted to seesites
of Harvard so I rented Love Story with Ryan O'Neal and Ali McGraw. I saw
a few shots of the campus here and there in the movie....but then when
it got to the part where O'Neal's character goes to
see his father for money to pay his wife's medical expenses...BLAM!!...I
really got an eye full...There
in his father's office sitting front and center was an incredible bronze
rowing statue of a coxed pair. I don't believe I'd ever seen it
before..It looked for certain to be French, and best I can make out,
it's on a light jade or light brown marble base....which would be
typical. We aren't given any
full close in shots but you can see a distant full length and closer in
partials, take a look below!
Ryan O'Neal and Ali McGraw
set in father's office, featuring a
c1890 COXED PAIR ROWING BRONZE -
Ryan O'Neal's character awaits his father's arrival
ask for money to pay his wife's medical expenses
is the clearest shot of the bronze in the movie
features moved from Home Page to Here's What's
New Archive Page - 1/15/07 eBay sale of c1900 Yale baseballporcelain decanter, AND
highlights of 12/07 Heritage Galleries auction of James Naismith
Photos and details of c1930
Executioner football helmet, and c1891 John Rogers football statue added
to Here's What's New section of this page - click
here to see