Leo Friede in Mermaid

A personally fascinating piece of Western History is the rise and fall of the Decked Sailing Canoe. This section of the CCSA Website will explore the people, the society, and the craft behind this movement and the evolution of the decked sailing canoe into the contemporary IC.


Photo above left: Leo Friede, sailing "Mermaid" (16x30) winning the NYCC International Challenge, 1911 (NYSHA)

Photo below right: W. Willard Howard, of the New York Canoe Club, sailing "Yankee" (16x30) in Britain around 1899


"These canoes... There is nothing I know to equal it. There is the feeling of speed, and the clean rush of air, as the water rushes swiftly underneath you. There is also the joy of gliding low and swiftly over the water, the only sounds being the swish of your canoe through the water and the singing of the wind through your mast, rigging and sails. At sixty.. I still look back with a quickening pulse and tingling of the blood at the exciting moments on the end of a sliding seat in a lightweight canoe."

- Uffa Fox, Sailing Boats


In the archives so far:

"... canoe sailing is the highest and most intelligent form of sailing, the most interesting and the most healthy branch of sailing and indeed any sport. ... Sailing a light canoe under a cloud of sail is the nearest approach by man to the controllable flight of a bird and the governable passage of the fish in the water, and all that can be legitimately introduced to perfect such action should indeed be welcomed." ... Warrington Baden-Powell, 1889

Elsewhere on the Internet: