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Anecdotes from the Archive

Collapsible Summer Fun: The Berthon Folding Canoe

Berthon Folding Canoe

Summer is officially upon us, and that means a bevy of outdoor activities lay waiting for our enjoyment. Whether you’re a hiker, swimmer, boater, biker or picnicker, one thing is certain: the more portable the necessary equipment is to lug around, the better—especially for those of us who rely on public transportation to get from [...]

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Anecdotes from the Archive

For those wishing to travel light by land and by sea


Whereas this August 23, 1919, Scientific American article acknowledged that there wasn’t anything particularly novel about a portable boat, the convenience offered by the one invented by Mr. Swinburne of Southfields, England, made it stand out as a new and important invention. Swinburne’s collapsible boat could be folded into a 2-foot long by 1-foot wide [...]

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On the importance of names, part two. What’s the difference between a boat and a ship?

I’ve been asked by the crew to stop calling the Knorr a boat. It’s a ship. “A ship can pick up a boat,” they tell me. The Knorr is also the largest ship in her fleet. Respect, my friends. In fact, one intrepid questioner asked about this exact distinction. Maybe she was trying to tell [...]

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