Pic of your wooden dinghy sailing.


Super Anarchist
I was also a coxswain on a varsity 8 racing out of Vespers in the early to mid 80’s. I remember seeing Jack Kelly jogging around all the time. He died doing what he loved. My Mom was from the Main Line and was often mistaken for Grace Kelly.

The crew went to Henley but my parents were too poor so I stayed stateside. They finished 2nd.  Not bad for some Yanks!
This is an extremely small world.



My Uffa Fox designed Albacore, and not shown I also have an Ackroyd like Steve Clark is restoring. Both are great boats that demonstrate the advances in hull form design and sail plans for their respective entries into the market. 



Phil S

Super Anarchist
To Fastyacht's point.  At the end of the 19th century the world of sport was very different than it is today.  In England there was a strict differentiation between Corinthian sport and Professional sort.  There are many reasons for this and you see it showing up all over the place, not least of which in the Modern Olympic movement which was strictly not professional until the 1970s.  A famous case was that of Jack Kelly Sr, who was one of the outstanding oarsmen of his era, but was excluded from competing in the Royal Henley because he was employed as a brick layer.  After he moved to Philadelphia and made a pile in construction, he founded and funded Vesper Boat Club and made sure his son ( Jack Kelly Jr) won Henley and his daughter ( Grace Kelly) married into the royal family of Monaco.  He sent the Stewards of Henley his flat cap when Jack won, and Vesper Crews proudly wore "Kelly for Brickwork" on their jerseys when over seas.

The English, can be very snooty and dismissive of whatever they feel isn't up to their standards. The colonies, particularly America and Australia were always reacting to these snubs and acting like a kid who hates his daddy but desperately craves his approval.  New York society didn't respond as we would hope they might.  Instead of telling the Brits to bugger off,  they aspired to be even more snooty than they were.  As a result there was an division in the sport between those who thought yachting should be conducted in "sound, sensible, seaworthy vessels" and those who were unafraid to get wet if it meant getting paid.  There was a spirited debate in the pages of Field and Stream ( W.P. Stephens) and Rudder ( Thomas Flemming Day.)  Unfortunately the wrong side won, and the professional water men were told that their participation was not welcome. The sport evolved differently in North America as a result.  Sailing is ex-urban leisure activity of the privileged,  and it is very hard to change.

Intersting history Steve, and it explains a lot of why US is different to other big sailing countries.

In Australia the workng boats morphed into the skiff classes, 10, 12, 16, and 18s in the eastern states and 14s spread more widely. Between the wars we already had many local classes and at least Moths and VJs spread nation wide. Then post war came the home build revolution from designers like Charlie Cunningham in Melbourne and Jack Holt from the UK. In the 1950,  suburban people had time and a little money and with a few skills and simple tools created thousands of plywood sailing sdinghies and catamarans. That was the boom era for small clubs, many survive but now days the increase cost for quality boats from factories, plus longer working hours, smaller suburban home plots and sheds, and the sport is shrinking.

Meanwhile the big boat clubs became more egalitarian just like our society. But still today there is little mixing of Yacht (Balasted boats) and Sailing (dinghy/cats) clubs. Mostly for logistic rather than social reasons.

Hope someone can sumarize the UK version, I expect there will be similarities, especially the impact of jack Holt.


The Q

Super Anarchist
In the UK Jack Holt, Jack Chippendale  and others, in particular the Mirror newspaper which sponsored the Mirror Dinghy had a huge effect in the 1960s .

One of the problems now, is schools now rarely teach practical skills, woodwork  / Metal work / technical drawing / cookery / Domestic Studies all got subsumed into a catch all Craft design  and technology, which includes basic computer science. So they learn a little about a lot.. Useless for building a boat.

So kids coming out of school rarely have practical skills and don't go on to build a cheap boat.. They will only buy a boat if they can afford it..

Also, for instance, Norfolk council got rid of the schools sailing fleet , partly to save costs, partly because it was seen as elitist.

I think we have more mixed clubs in the UK, In particular in Norfolk. My own club ranges from 45ft Broads sailing cruisers down to  oppies. In the middle and very popular on the broads are keelboats of 20-25ft most clubs have fleets of them . Sometimes we can have them all on one stretch of river.. 



Note in the UK, generally, a "Keelboat" as a term refers to open , fixed keel displacement boat, If it's got a cabin it's a yacht or a sailing cruiser.

My club has:

Rebels. https://www.classicboat.co.uk/rebel-reiver-r16/

White Boats , http://www.ybod.org.uk/

Reedling Keelboats, https://www.yachtsandyachting.com/news/172559/Reedling-Keelboats-50th-Anniversary-Celebrations

Yeoman, http://www.yeomankinsman.org.uk/yeoman/yeoman.shtm

Some old classes such as the Norfolk dinghy http://www.norfolkdinghy.com/ still have the requirement, the helm must be an owner.

Going to say Royal Windermere Yacht club, https://www.royal-windermere.co.uk/ (founded 1860) and you can't get more posh than a "Royal"

They have to have a huge variation from yachts / sailing cruisers  through the popular Keel boats such as Flying 15s, to the common Dinghys.

To encourage more into sailing my club started a sailing school, 80 kids out there most Thursday evenings in the summer. Many leave when they no longer qualify to use a club boat.. But those that get enthusiastic do get their own boats and our fleets have been increasing for some years.

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Super Anarchist
The Biglin Brothers Turning the Stake. Philadelphia, 19th century, wood boat, not amateurs...back when longshoremen raced sandbaggers, sloop-boats etc and there were also tuckups and hikers out racing with fleet totals on weekends in the Delaware with 500 boats....

View attachment 432840

...from this level of activity both amateur and professional came the Kellys. 

People were way more physically active in 1905. Walk from West Philadelphia or North Philadelphia to work at 17th and Arch, walk out past the Water Works in the afternoon, grab some shells and row upriver to the upriver boathouse, and back down. Sunday outings in a wherry with the women and children, again to the upriver boathouse.

And bicycle touring was also huge in that time. And track racing. Culminating with 6 day races,  miss and out, the Madison, and lots of others. Like sailing, there were originally people from lots of not effete backgrounds racing. 
Was there ever a better painter than Eakins?   



Here is my 18 footer. Please don't give me a hard time about the sail trim. That picture was taken about five minutes after the boat was launched for the first time and there were a number of things not quite right.