Notes and Comments / Nouvelles brèves - Boyne River Coracle

Notes and Comments / Nouvelles brèves

Boyne River Coracle

Joleen Gordon
Nova Scotia Museum
The following is a correction of a note that appeared in the Research Report "The Teifi Coracle, " Material History Review 37, Spring 1993:52-59.

1 In the spring of 1986, our group in Nova Scotia built a replica of the Boyne River coracle as part of the celebration of the "Festival of Hands" organized by the Nova Scotia Designer Crafts Council.

2 As a Research Associate at the Nova Scotia Museum, I contacted the National Museum of Ireland, which had in their possession a wonderful collection of photographs of the last coracle built at the River Boyne; they sent me copies. With this information, together with some essential technical basketry information from British basketmaker Alastair Hazeltine, we moved and launched our coracle in Halifax Harbour in June. Later, I wrote a description of the project in The Basket News, a basketry newspaper in the United States, and then a more extensive article in Wooden Boat magazine, no. 79, December 1987.

3 Our coracle rests at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic where it is brought out from time to time and during "Small Boat Month" in October. All my research papers, plus the Irish black-and-white photographs are in the Museum library.

4 I have also worked with a group of people in Lunenburg County making a Boyne coracle; this crew now builds a boat each summer during "The Wooden Boat Festival" in Mahone Bay, Lunenburg County.

5 Coracle building and racing are very popular in Britain. A few years ago, enthusiasts formed The Coracle Society based at the Welsh Folk Museum in St. Fagans, Cardiff, Wales. Their present Chairman is Peter Badge, 100 Thames Road, Chiswick, London, England W4 3RE. Dues are £5 yearly.