Gar Wood Collection

Collection Owner:
Cover Image:
Gar Wood Collection
Gar Wood Collection Gar Wood at the wheel of a Garform - Image Source

Collection Facts

Dates of Original:
1925 - 1946; 1979 - 1999

Historical Context

Garfield “Gar” Wood (1880 - 1971) was the son of a ferryboat operator. He learned about boats and boating from a very young age. He began a successful business after inventing a hydraulic lift for unloading coal. His business soon focused on boats--especially racing boats, which was his true passion. He broke the world record for boating speed several times in the 1920s and 30s. He won the prestigious Harmsworth Cup and Gold Cup races many times. After his successful racing career, Wood focused on his businesses. Gar Wood Industries produced racing motorboats as well as truck bodies and winches. Gar Wood built one of the world’s finest line of production recreational boats.
In 2010 the factory documents and materials collected by the Society from the Gar Wood Boat Division were donated to the Antique Boat Museum by Gar Wood author, historian, and Antique Boat Museum Trustee Anthony S. Mollica, Jr. The Antique Boat Museum continues to provide research on Gar Wood boats as well as issuing Gar Wood Certificates. If you are interested in obtaining a Gar Wood Production Verification Certificate, please visit the following page:

Scope of Collection

This collection includes: articles, advertisements, price and specification lists, photographs, correspondence, and newspaper clippings. Many of the materials relate to the advertisement and production of GarWood Industries models. There are also materials relating to boat racing, including articles and black-and-white photographs of prominent Gar Wood racing boats. Much of the Gar Wood collection dates from the 1920s through 1940s. The correspondence files date to the late 20th century.