"It may have been Old Sabbatis who repaired my father’s canoe every spring, not long after the ice had gone out of the ponds and lakes. He seemed to me as old as light and just as diffuse."
thian Lewey, 85 years old, at Grand Lake-1898
Permission Granted by Copyright Owner for Use on Book DrumAthian Lewey, 85 years old, at Grand Lake-1898 - Credit: Maine Historical Society/MaineToday Media



The birchbark canoe was first used by the Algonquin Indians in what is now the northeastern part of the United States and adjacent Canada.

In the summer months the bark of the birch is easily removed in large sheets, making it possible to create large canoes. In traditional construction, the bark was sewn together with roots and caulked with resin; sheathing and ribs were pressed into the sheet of bark, which was hung from a gunwale temporarily supported by stakes.