"Of all national assets, archives are the most precious:
they are the gift of one generation to another,
and the extent of our care of them marks the
extent of our civilization." Arthur Doughty.

About Us

My photo
San Juan Islands, Washington State, United States
A society formed in 2009 for the purpose of collecting, preserving, celebrating, and disseminating the maritime history of the San Juan Islands and northern Puget Sound area. Check this log for tales from out-of-print publications as well as from members and friends. There are circa 500, often long entries, on a broad range of maritime topics; there are search aids at the bottom of the log. Please ask for permission to use any photo posted on this site. Thank you.

14 May 2013


NORTH STAR, Deer Harbor, Orcas Island.
Built 1930, by boatbuilder Chet North,
who sailed her into this port and never left.
Only known photo, saved by his Deer Harbor neighbors. 

"In 1911 Thomas Fleming Day, editor of Rudder magazine, sailed the 25-ft yawl SEA BIRD from the US to Italy,  single-handed. 
L-R: Frederick B. Thurber, T. R. Goodwin, Thomas F. Day
in 1911

Aboard SEA BIRD before their trip to Italy.
Library of Congress Photo (LC-B2-2207-9)
      A near copy of the boat plans appearing in the magazine, caught the eye of a multitude of people, one of them being Chet North, then living in Portland, OR. 
     In 1930 he completed a 22-ft copy of the vessel, with the addition of a 1928 Chevrolet engine, for more dependable arrivals.
     The boat was trucked to Olympia, WA for an October launching, along with one large police dog, the two senior Norths, and a new wife. Chet had just married Averil; on Halloween night they all set off for Canada, heading into a freshening northeaster. The first night was spent on McNeil Island.
      In December while returning from BC, they stopped for an overnight in Deer Harbor and never left.
      Only one picture was ever taken of the boat and that was also the only time that all sails were up; the engine having proved too handy. This photograph was found among the Pearmain family's collection of 'unknowns'.

The remains of the boat were, and perhaps are still, in the blackberry bushes on the Coffelt property on Lopez Island." 
Text by mariner/historian L. W. 'Corkey' North, son of boatbuilder Chet North, 2006.
This image from The Rudder, October 1901.
The magazine founder, editor, and boat designer was
Thomas Fleming Day, as mentioned by the author of this log post.
There is a detailed article about TFD and his work in
Wood Boat magazine No.43, Nov./Dec. 1981.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Archived Log Entries