Dunphy Boats CD


The Dunphy Boat Company of Eau Claire and Oshkosh Wisconsin was in the wood boat building business from 1854 through 1966.  This made it on e of the oldest and longest producing boat companies in the United States during it's history.

Fred Pospeschil of Two Rivers, Wisconsin has compiled a tremendous amount of information on a CD-ROM.  This CD-ROM contains Dunphy Boat Company articles, catalogs (page by page), flyers, accessory catalogs, brochures, and many other interesting memorabilia items from people all over the United States.  The support and reaction on the CD has been terrific.

The CD is being offered for $20 including first class postage.  Quantity and dealer discounts are available.

The information on the CD is organized into eleven sections.  These sections are Credits, Articles, Catalogs, Speedway Trailers, Pictures of boats, Pictures of boats identified with their owners, Pictures and words associated with boats being refinished, Pictures and words associated with boats being rebuilt, Manuals, Miscellaneous, and Ads.  The following paragraphs are adapted from the CD and provide additional details on its objectives and contents.  If you have any questions about it please drop me an email or give me a call.



Welcome to my effort to collect and economically distribute/share any and all information which still exists on the Dunphy Boat Corporation, the various boats they built, and boats which still exist.


So that you can better understand this project I'll provide just a bit of background.  I grew up in Janesville Wisconsin and spent most of my free time boating on the Rock River and sailing on Lake Delevan. After college, I spent twenty years as an intelligence and data processing officer in the US Air Force.  After retiring from the Air Force I worked fourteen years as a system analyst, programmer, and project manager for Science Applications International Corp.  During these working years my boating was limited to radio controlled models.  As an intelligence officer I spent a lot of time working with maps and became interested in making maps with computers.  One thing lead to another and over the years I accumulated an extensive collection of cartographic data which I distributed more or less as a hobby business .  This data became too large to ship on floppies.  As a result,  I set up a system to make my own limited volume CD-ROMs, which I have been doing for a number of years.

In February of 1998 I retired and we moved from Omaha Nebraska to Two Rivers Wisconsin, which is on the shore of lake Michigan, so I could get back into boating and we could enjoy the nice weather up here.  As soon as spring came I picked up a 17' deep-V glass boat so I could at least get out on the lake.  Then I started to look around for a wood boat I could work on.  About a month later I came across a 12' 1955 Dunphy Perch which is now fully stripped.  Refinishing it is taking awhile as I replaced the 17' with a 1979 22' aluminum Starcraft Islander with a 120HP MerCrusier which I have fitted out for trolling on Lake Michigan.  As a result, the Dunphy is getting less attention than was originally anticipated.  In the spring of 1999 I found a one owner, 17' 1957 Thompson Sea Lancer in Oshkosh WI.  Although it needs refinishing, the hull is in excellent condition and the canvas top and seat cushions are in like new condition.  Just couldn't let something like that get away.  For now, it will just have to sit covered up until the Dunphy is finished.

When I started asking around for information on the Dunphy company I was told that there wasn't much available.  Several people told me that Bob Speltz's "The Real Runabouts" books would be a good place to start.  Our local public library obtained all seven volumes for me.  After reviewing them I purchased Volumes IV and V which contained the information on the Dunphy Company.  In his introduction to Vol. IV, Mr. Speltz wrote "I have only scratched the surface as far as material goes.   I hope that others will pick up the 'torch' and carry on, doing more detailed accounts of firms I am only able to briefly discuss in the amount of time and space I can allot to each manufacturer." 


This started my quest to gather whatever was still available.  Simply put, my objective was, and is, to collect anything and everything still in existence on the Dunphy company and the boats they built.  Although I still prefer to work with printed materials, I decided to initially record the information on CD-ROMs.  I chose the CD-ROM medium as I expect that new materials will become available incrementally over time and it is reasonably easy to add material to CD-ROMs which are produced in an one-off process.  This way I can share what I have at the moment and make updates whenever appropriate.  I would also like to build an inventory of existing boats and sections for refinishing and restoration projects.  Having such information would have been useful when I began refinishing my boat.   If  I can find them, I would also like to interview anyone who has first or second hand knowledge or contact with the company.

Another objective is to represent the materials without filtering or biasing them with my judgments and opinions.  This way you can decide for yourself what is important, useful or interesting.  I also want you to be able to produce a reasonably good hardcopy of the materials which could be filed in a three ring notebook. There are times when you just can't beat working with hardcopy.  As a result, you will find this document to consist mainly of document images and relatively few words.  I suspect that the section which contains the catalogs will be of most interest to many people.


In preparing this document I have been in contact with the following:

Wisconsin Maritime Museum
Iowa Great Lakes Museum
Wisconsin State Historical Society
The Antique Outboard Motor Club
Midwest Antique & Classic Boat Association
The Antique and Classic Boat Society
Mariner's Museum Research Library
Classic Boating
Searches and announcements on the web
Oshkosh Wisconsin Public Library
Numerous private individuals

Please check over the Credits section to see all of the great people who helped by providing most of the material which makes up this document.  Clearly, without this great support you would not be able to view and enjoy most of this material.  I was quite amazed at how trusting and generous lovers of wooden boats are.  Most of them only met, or know, me over the phone or the internet.  Yet they willingly loaned me their valuable materials for scanning into this document.  To all of them we owe a big THANK YOU.  If you have any Dunphy related materials, or know of any potential sources, I would greatly appreciate hearing from you.

To the best of my knowledge, except where noted, all of the images in this document are in the public domain.  Therefore, you should be able to use copies of the images as you see fit.  If you have any information to the contrary please let me know.  As with most authors, I would appreciate hearing how you put these materials to use and how I could make it more useful.

Document Construction

As you will notice, I have kept the design of this document as simple as I could.  Because the purpose of this document is to present information on Dunphy, and most of the images are quite large relative to the computer display, I avoided using fancy buttons, logos, spinning things, and other stuff you commonly see cluttering up many web pages.   I placed all of the navigation tools at the top of the screen so you would not have to scroll down the pages in order to move to a different page.

A high percentage of the pages have navigation selections centered at the top of the page in the form:

Articles    Next    Previous Print

In most cases all four items will be underlined signifying that they are links to another page.  The first page in a series will not have the Previous item highlighted as there is no previous item.  Similarly, the last page in the series will not have the Next selection highlighted as it is the last one.  This was done at the request of several reviewers who found it was easier to navigate if the selection items did not move from side to side

The 'Print' link on each page will display a much larger version of the page without any titles, links, or other adornments.  This will allow you to use your browser's print function to print the page at just about the same size as the original on a 300 DPI printer.  To return back to the basic viewing page, click your browser's 'back' button.  Since these pages are almost a full 8.5 x 11 inches you will have to decrease your normal printer margins to the minimum the printer will support.   Otherwise, you will probably get multiple pages of output each time you print a page.   For additional information and guidelines for printing these images please see the comments provided on the Catalogs page.

I find that using a screen display resolution of 1024 x 768 on a 17" display to work quite well.  However, I have tested the document on several systems at different resolution with good results.  Clearly, the larger your computer display screen is the easier it will be to view the images.  If you wish to view the maximum amount of the images at one time I would suggest turning off the browser navigation bar.  Due to the size of the images, moving from page to page may be time consuming if you are using a slow computer.  The images attached to the Print selections are considerably larger than the ones normally displayed and, as a result, will take even longer to process and display.  To maximize the quality of these "Print" images, both on screen and on paper, I used the smallest amount of compression offered by the scanning software.   The price of quality images is large file sizes and slower processing.

I hope you enjoy the document find it useful.  Please drop me a note or e-mail at any time with comments, questions, suggestions, complaints, and I hope more inputs.

Version Contents

Edition 1  -  March 1999 : Full or partial catalogs for 1923, 1935, 1940, 1949, 1950, 1951, 1956, 1957, 1958, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1963 Sailboats, 1964, 1964 X-55,  two manuals on the engine used in the X-55s, initial pictures for the Owners, Rebuilding, Refinishing, and Miscellaneous sections.

Edition 2 - November 1999: Added 1954 and 1956 catalogs, 1949 and 1956 accessories catalogs, and numerous additions to the Owners, Restoration, Credits and Miscellaneous sections.  Two new sections "Ads" and "Speedway were added.  The first contains ads and ad mats for years from 1910 to 1961.  The second new section contains Speedway Trailer flyers for 1955 and 1956.

Edition 3 - February 2000: Added catalogs, flyers, accessory catalogs, and price lists for 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1955, 1957, 1958, 1959, and 1960.  Also added were thirteen newspaper articles.

Edition 4 - May 2000: The main additions in this edition are mainly materials provided by the Oshkosh Public Library.  These include 29 articles, 1936 and 1952 Catalogs , 1956 price list, ad mats for 1941-42, and eighteen ads from various magazines and the cover and cover story from the 1970 Snipe magazine.  Also of note are the three pictures which were provided by Mary Oldani, who is the daughter of Cully Foster - the last owner of Dunphy Boats.  Other minor additions were added in appropriate places throughout the project.  In this edition the Ads section was reorganized to provide better display response times.  Previously, there was one main "Ads" page which contained thumbnails for every ad.  With the addition of numerous ads, the display time for this page increased greatly.  In this edition the ads for a given year are grouped on their own separate page.  This has greatly reduced the display time for the main Ads page.