Your Webmeister - William Edgar John III

A conversation with Hank Why and Linda Dabica in the Fall of 2000, led to my volunteering to maintain the Website for our beloved NH Boat Museum. I had designed, installed, and managed large corporate information systems for over 30 years during my professional career, and as I began to eye semi-retirement, thought it was time to apply some of my skills to help our local NH Boat Museum.


Then in the Spring of 2002, I finally took the plunge, casting off my career in corporate America, and starting my new, semi-retirement career with my own Vintage Race Boat Shop located here in beautiful Wolfeboro, NH. It was time to follow my dream and my bliss, working on vintage wooden boats and maintaining my own, very active vintage Website. I was ready and well qualified, after 25 years of on-the-job training while owning, rebuilding and maintaining my beloved Gar Wood Speedster Obsession


Vintage race boats and boat racing are in my blood, and our fifth reproduction project will be a reproduction of my grandfather's Sally Ann Jr a 225 hydroplane that was an APBA national champion. My grandfather, William Edgar John Sr. was a naval architect, owned a shipyard in Rye, New York, raced in several inboard classes, and was inducted into the APBA's Honor Squadron in 1955, two years after my other hero, Gar Wood. My father, William Edgar John Jr. raced International-One-Design sailboats on Long Island Sound where he was Fleet Chairman for many years and was the first President of the IOD class, based out of the Larchmont Yacht Club where he was very active.


My grandmother was also active in the early days of power boat racing in this country. She actually drove and won quite a few APBA boat races, and I have two large trophies that she won in 1914. Both my grandfather and grandmother are in the above photo.

William E John & Associates - shipyard in Rye, NY


"Welcome" - 1903 73 foot Lawley Cruiser owned by William E John Sr.

But alas, my mother moved us kids up to Lake Winnipesaukee when I was very young, and I spent my early summers at my grandmother's on Governors Island. She had a Century Coronado with u-shaped dock, canvas cover and electric winch - very cool. I also worked at the Goodhue Boat Yard in Glendale - on the gas dock - the best job I ever had. Speaking of landmarks, Tup Goodhue and I played in a rock band "The Fugitives" and we were the house band at Irwins Winnipesaukee Gardens during the summers of 1965 and 1966. Tup and John Goodhue used to race in the marathon water ski races on Lake Winnipesaukee, and I can remember the Tommy Bartlett Water Ski Shows on Paugus Bay and Boat-O-Rama at the Weirs.  These are just some of my memories of Lake Winnipesaukee - that make it a very special place for me.

The Fugitives - Irwins Winnipesaukee Gardens - summer of 1965/66

Then, while visiting on vacation during the summer of 1979 - I read a "Jerry Harper" ad in The Laconia Citizen for a 1948 Gar Wood with a Chrysler Hemi motor. I went to see the boat and bought it on first sight. My life has not been the same since. Now I still have my beloved Obsession, still trying to make it go faster, and still enjoy giving boat rides, especially at APBA Vintage Race Boat Regattas. In fact, several years ago at a Detroit Gold Cup Vintage Event, I gave Tom Pakradooni, current APBA Jersey Speed Skiff national champion, a ride in my Obsession, and he was telling me stories of my boat when it raced in the marathon water ski events on Lake Winnipesaukee. What a great boat ride that was - driving my Gar Wood Speedster on the historic Detroit Gold Cup race course.

And now I have my very own Vintage Race Boat Shop, happy as a clam, and maintain this very active and dynamic Website.

Wolfeboro, New Hampshire For the past ten years, we held our Saturday Morning Gatherings at our shop in the beautiful and historic village of Wolfeboro, New Hampshire at 7 King Street, just off Bay Street and across the street from the entrance of the Sawmill Marina and the Wolfetrap Raw Bar & Grill. We provided fresh pots of coffee, shop projects to discuss, a big screen TV and usually had some vintage boat racing videos playing in the background. We usually had around 15/20 vintage wonderers attending, with a couple of stools and chairs, hot coffee, way too many donuts, and lots of good vintage boat banter.


Mount Dora, Florida In April of 2014, we closed our Wolfeboro shop and hauled our tools and beloved Obsession down to our new home and shop in Mount Dora. We are happily retired, living on the water in beautiful Mount Dora and enjoying our Monthly Fun Runs !!!

Monthly Fun Runs

Well - we finally did it. On 2/7/2016 we signed the papers for the sale of our beloved Obsession. After 36 years of ownership, countless ACBS Boat Shows, lots of fun running on the APBA Vintage Race Boat Circuit and many, many fun boat rides, it was time for a new adventure. On March BRACKLEY BOATS - Gravenhurst, Muskoka, Ontario20, 2016 our beloved Obsession was picked up and hauled north to Muskoka, Ontario and will be maintained for the new owner by our friend Paul Brackley at Brackley Boats in Gravenhurst.



Here it is - our next vintage/classic race boat !!!

This 21 foot Schiada was custom ordered from the factory in Torrance, California by the former owner who drove all the way from the East Coast to pick up and haul back East in 1998. Since then the boat has always been kept in climate controlled storage and only used occasionally for weekend cruising with the family. With only 170 hours of use on the powerful 502 cubic inch 500 horsepower MerCruiser motor, this boat is absolutely stunning and in showroom condition. This Schiada River Tunnel design utilizes twin tunnels straddling a specially designed center pod for additional lift, while its three point running surface completely eliminates troublesome chine walking. And with the MerCruiser 500HP motor for power, this virtual rocket ship sprints to well over 90 miles per hour with ease !!! 


We found this classic Schiada with the help of Mark Krzyzanowski at Antique Boat America and we headed north to Clayton, New York on May 1st to pick up the boat and haul back to our home in Mount Dora, Florida. This was just in time for our next Monthly Run Run & Gathering on May 7th. Please join us for the début of our next vintage/classic race boat !!!

Monthly Fun Runs

Objectives for our shop Website:

  • Keep it active and dynamic with constant/daily updates.

  • Keep it simple and focus on content, not "flash and dash".

  • Create a Webpage for every shop project and post constant updates.

  • Create a Webpage for every vintage event we attend and post lots of photos.

  • Maintain photo archives of vintage wood boats, projects and vintage events.

  • Maintain a Trading Dock Webpage to help sell/save vintage wooden boats.

  • Maintain a Vintage Event Webpage to help promote ACBS and APBA vintage events.

Well as they say, our plan was to "retire" down here in Mount Dora. But after a visit from then CRA President Dick Whyte, we found ourselves working year round promoting and running the Fall and Spring Tavares Vintage Race Boat Regattas, sponsored by our local Classic Raceboat Association (CRA) and sanctioned/insured by the American Powerboat Association (APBA). For over 15 years now, we have been using the marketing power of Internet Websites, Email and recently Facebook to help promote and support ACBS boat shows and APBA vintage race boat regattas.  We are still quite hyperactive, as we are usually busy posting daily updates on Websites and Facebook, and having lots of fun !!!

And - we are currently restoring an absolutely stunning 1947 waterfront home on Lakeshore Drive on Lake Dora that we are calling Lake Winds. The restoration is coming along nicely and we will be posting the story line with lots of photos as the restoration process continues. We are finally back on the waterfront with a boathouse and loving life !!!

Lake Winds

For locals, please join our:

Saturday Mornings

Monthly Fun Runs

Some related vintage race boat links:

Return to Our Beloved Vintage Wooden Boats


Return to Home Page - Vintage Race Boat Shop