1st Motor Boat on Lake Wanaka 

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1st Motor Boat on Lake Wanaka 

In the days before the guys at Boat Haulage were around, it was a real mission to launch the woodys, & some were more challenging. In the above photo we see the first motor launch for Lake Wanaka being transported there by horse & wagon team.

Photo ex University of Otago / Hocken collection via Lew Redwood’s FB page.

Its a long shot but any able to ID the launch?

Another of Lew’s photos, below, is dated 22 December 1956 (just 6 days b4 I was born) – any clues on the location?

Harold Kidd Input – The launch is TILIKUM, formerly on Lake Wakatipu. She was taken across from Frankton to Pembroke in September 1904 on a timber wagon driven by J Brensell. Her owner was Capt McDougall. TILIKUM was probably a rename after Capt Vos’s canoe TILIKUM which had just visited New Zealand and created a great deal of interest, so her provenance is obscure. Certainly she’s a typical early 20th Century canoe-sterned oil launch in the Logan Bros style.

There’s a suggestion that TILIKUM started life as a torpedo boat based in Dunedin. Haven’t had a chance to check that out but it seems plausible.

Update 27-06 The “torpedo boat” origin is rubbish. The Dunedin-based Thornycroft spar torpedo boat TAIAROA wa a hugely different animal which was decommissioned about the time TILIKUM appeared, but that’s the only common context except the “torpedo stern” and that it seems TILIKUM first owner, J.C. McBride of Queenstown, bought her in Dunedin. I reckon she was probably built by one of the top Dunedin/Port Chalmers constructors like Jas McPherson or Jas McLellan.

 

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11 thoughts on “1st Motor Boat on Lake Wanaka 

  1. The “torpedo boat” origin is rubbish. The Dunedin-based Thornycroft spar torpedo boat TAIAROA wa a hugely different animal which was decommissioned about the time TILIKUM appeared, but that’s the only common context except the “torpedo stern” and that it seems TILIKUM first owner, J.C. McBride of Queenstown, bought her in Dunedin. I reckon she was probably built by one of the top Dunedin/Port Chalmers constructors like Jas McPherson or Jas McLellan.

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  2. PS there’s a suggestion that TILIKUM started life as a torpedo boat based in Dunedin. Haven’t had a chance to check that out but it seems plausible.

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  3. The launch is TILIKUM, formerly on Lake Wakatipu. She was taken across from Frankton to Pembroke in September 1904 on a timber waggon driven by J Brensell. Her owner was Capt McDougall. TILIKUM was probably a rename after Capt Vos’s canoe TILIKUM which had just visited New Zealand and created a great deal of interest, so her provenance is obscure. Certainly she’s a typical early 20th Century canoe-sterned oil launch in the Logan Bros style.

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  4. The girl on the wagon heading over to Wanaka has a canoe stern. The photo is obviously pre motor car or truck, pre 1910? She is around 35 feet in length and looks very much like the two Logan launches of 1903, Matareka 1 and Maxie. A bit much to think she might have motored down from Aukland but she could certainly have followed a very similar design to the early Logan launches and their Scottish roots – originating from Dunedin or Otago, very Scottish. Boat design back then, in that transition period from sail to motor, must have followed tried and tested patterns so not hard to believe that similar designs were happening at opposite ends of the country?

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  5. The boat launching mystery location is Paraparaumu Beach with Kapiti Island in the background. You started the day out fishing wet to the waste and finished up at the end of the day just as wet.

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