The Bob Speltz Legacy Lives On
At The Minnesota Lakes Maritime Museum
Story by Dave Bortner
Photos by Jim Arneson & Dane Anderson
A couple of things Tom Juul said today in his BSLOL (Bob Speltz Land-O-Lakes) Winter Workshop tech session at the Minnesota Lakes Maritime Museum really resonated with me.
One, to those of us growing up in vintage boats in the 1970’s, pre-Internet, is the profound effect Bob Speltz’s Real Runabouts books had on our hobby. They were the go-to source for information about vintage boats, our Encyclopedia Britannica, if you will.
Since the “BS” in BSLOL stands for Bob Speltz, we really emphasized his contributions last fall, when we put on the Woods and Water show here in Minnesota. Among our attendees today at this tech session, there are a number of people, at least eight, who knew Bob personally, and can attest to his fervent interest in all aspects of vintage boating, and, especially, in getting it written down!
We even have the privilege of seeing the last boat Bob Speltz restored, a 1916 Dingle rowboat, which is here at the museum, on loan from Dane Anderson.
Today, we’re making a very special presentation to the Minnesota Lakes Maritime Museum, on behalf of our good friends and ACBS board member, Paul and Karen Harrison.
Bob Speltz’s sister, Mary Keating, donated some of Bob’s scrapbooks to ACBS several years ago. Paul and Karen Harrison bought them at auction, and then had them scanned, and have made a DVD available through ACBS. After they did the scanning, they wondered “what’s next?” with this one of a kind resource.
They felt they should reside in Minnesota, and asked some of us at BSLOL where we thought they should reside. Well, there’s really only one choice, one place in Minnesota whose mission it is to honor the legacy of vintage boating and the lake lifestyle, and that’s The Minnesota Lakes Maritime Museum!
It’s our honor today to convey these very special historic documents to the museum, on behalf of Paul and Karen Harrison.
Freedom Boat Service
The Minnesota Lakes Maritime Museum
From the website: The Minnesota Lakes Maritime Museum celebrates our lake traditions and legacies, and is committed to their preservation for future generations. A visit to the MLMM is enjoyable for everyone in your family.
Visitors will discover classic boats, grand hotel and resort history, fishing memorabilia and much more. The Maritime Gardens unfolds as the project continues the development of Phase Two. Several events are scheduled in the Gardens this summer. The Museum and Gardens provide an excellent venue for your next company event or wedding.
For more information on renting the museum facilities for your event, or how to contribute to this project, contact the Minnesota Lakes Maritime Museum & Gardens 320-759-1114 or you can visit their website by Click Here.
(By the way, you can click on the photos today to enlarge them.)
Congratulations to the Minnesota Lakes Maritime Museum as the recipient of the Bob Speltz Scrapbooks donation. This is exactly where they belong for future generations to appreciate the massive contribution Bob Speltz made to the hobby.
Thanks to Dave Bortner, Jim Arneson & Dane Anderson for sharing this story with us today.