Search
  • Bonnie Hawk Barney

PART 4: The story of Juno 1891-1913

In the Lake Country of New York State, there was one craft which stood out: Skipper Whitfield’s Juno evolved over the years from a deep vee configuration, to shallow vee, and finally to the then-modern conception of racing hulls, the "skimmer," which was such a novel design that old-timers vowed she could float on a heavy dew.

Fourth new hull design taking shape - only parts of the keel and transom were carried over from the third hull. First truly flat bottom. Juno planed on flare of her bilges.


Even more than pride in technical skill, the Skipper took joy in sharing the beauty of sailing. He gave many a young sailor the skills to race and coached every crew in boat handling. Unassuming and quiet mannered, yet capable of leaving a lasting stamp on the yacht club, he carried his friends and neighbors, cottagers and strangers for cruising around the lake. In the words of his grandson:


One school picnic found more than 40 people aboard, and let anyone give a friendly wave from shore, then we put in or called for a party to row out to the boat. They came by launch, buggy, and trolley on pleasant Sundays. So many came on the cars that the Keuka Park and Branchport trolley company elected Gramp to a directorship, entitling some of our family to ride on passes. Most every car stopped at our cottage, and Gramp kept an eye on the porch rail to see if a red blanket were hung out. This would mean sailing to our dock where there would be eager folks waiting for their turn. Sometimes a few would drop off, but usually there would be seats for all, up to 35 adults.

Juno in 1903 - Picnic lunch while drifting. William H. Whitfield "Skipper" at right


How the Skipper enjoyed reassuring the timid ones. He would explain the safety of s