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Object Name Guideboat, Adirondack
Date 1880-1882
Artist McLenithan, William
Maker McLenithan Brothers (?)
Material Wood
Used Lake Placid
Description Transom-sterned Adirondack Guideboat

L: 17' 4" B: 44"Wt: 120 lbs
Built by William McLenathan, Saranac Lake, (?) ca. 1870

This boat has no yoke cleats and is not quite smooth-skinned, but in every other particular it is a guideboat--probably a very early one. It may have been built for the hotel of Benjamin Brewster, the first on Mirror Lake.

Boats like this one, relatively long and heavy, were used in the 1870s to take two or three tourists at a time on sightseeing tours of Lake Placid. The seats no longer exist in this boat, but there were probably at least four. Two guides rowed at the same time, and a circuit of the lake could be made in a morning or an afternoon. This may account for the heavy construction, since classic guideboats are considered too fragile for the stress of tandem rowing. In 1882 this boat was used to freight building materials to Camp Piney Nook, which was under construction on the shore of Lake Placid, six miles from the nearest road. Much later the boat's owners used an outboard motor on it.

Notes 17' 4" x 43.75", 120 lbs.
Donor attributed this boat to Ben Brewster, of Lake Placid or guides associated with him. Wardner actually wrote to the Daily Enterprise in Saranac Lake to ask for any information about this boat. Russell Demerse of Saranac Lake wrote in his thoughts as to the McLenithan brothers being the builders. See accession folder for further info.
Dimensions W-3.646 L-17.333 feet
Collection BBB310
Catalog Number 1956.074.0001
Other number cat. 81
Imagefile 051\1956.074.0001.JPG
Species Guideboat, Adirondack