I have always loved wooden boats of all kinds, but especially dories, for their elegant simplicity of design, the way they look upon the water, the way they handle in a heavy sea, and their rich and rugged history. I had known some in my youth on Cape Cod—tender, unadorned, straight-sided workboats with pine planks hammered together with clenched nails. They were appealing to me who, in a boyhood self-delusion of becoming a fisherman, saw a kind of beauty in old, scarred skiffs that was quite apart from gleaming hulls of thoroughbreds trimmed in teak and mahogany.I never became a fisherman, but a lifetime later I awakened the long-dormant dream of building a boat of my own. I enrolled in a Greg Rössel course at WoodenBoat School to begin acquiring the necessary skills. There I saw, in an open shed and resting quietly among other boats in various stages of construction, a dory of a different sort. Compared to the working dories I’d known, it had a more refined, even genteel, look, gracefully bellied, the flat bottom narrow and lanceolate. The strake laps were studded with neatly peened copper rivets. The gunwales, thwarts, and tombstone transom were mahogany, lustrous even though awaiting the glow of varnish. I was smitten. 

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