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CALLIOPE CAROUSEL is a custom designed and professionally built 13ft custom motor launch. This reproduction of an early 20th Century Captain’s gig is of cold-molded mahogany construction with teak planked decks. A single cylinder BMW raw water-cooled diesel engine fitted amidships
with tiller steering powers her. The deck fittings are 24k gold plated and there are custom white cushions for all seats. Storage lockers are built into the forepeak and lazarette and into the seats port and starboard. She is beautifully finished with design trim in gold. There are detachable bow and stern lights, teak bow and stern flag staffs, audio/visual engine alarms, and a VHF radio.
Originally built for and owned by Edgar Kaiser, Calliope has been tenderly used and cared for by its second owner (now deceased) and his family is hoping that a new owner will care for her in a similar way. The boat is stored of late on a trailer and there is a 3 point aluminum harness with rubber sheathed stainless steel cables that attach to 3 lifting eyes.
Edgar Kaiser, Jr. commissioned James A. Bock of Stockton California in 1981 to build a 13’ reproduction of a 20th Century Captain’s gig of cold-molded mahogany with teak planked decks (see gold plaque in the cockpit). She in hull #5 of an exclusive run of 5. She is powered by a BMW single cylinder four stroke 7 horsepower diesel engine. The name of the vessel is “Calliope Carousel.”
Edgar Kaiser was Chairman of Kaiser Resources LTD, a company originally founded by his grandfather industrialist Henry J. Kaiser (ships, cars, etc.). Edgar had a fleet of boats the most significant was “Calliope” a Jack Hargrave designed aluminum 148’ yacht which was featured in an article in MotorBoating and Sailing issue of January, 1987 (see link below). Interestingly, a picture with the article shows another wooden captain’s gig that is larger that Calliope Carousel. The article mentions that Edgar’s boat fleet includes a 75’ yacht named “Little Calliope” that he uses for cruising in the Pacific Northwest.
Edgar used Calliope Carousel as a tender between his house and yacht. Calliope Carrousel shows its hailing port to be Orcas Island. Perhaps this is where Little Calliope was harbored.
Edgar advertised Calliope Carousel for sale in the Wooden Boat magazine. My friend, Jim, saw the ad and called Edgar for more information. Edgar told Jim that he wanted to keep the boat in the family but nobody would give it the care that Edgar had and he was looking for someone who would. After several calls, Jim and Edgar agreed on a price but Edgar stipulated that he wanted a right of first refusal if Jim ever wanted to sell the boat. Jim sent a $10,000 deposit and travelled to Washington to take delivery. He trailered back to Michigan where he kept it at his cottage on Green Lake near Grand Rapids. Most evenings Jim would put on his captain’s hat and cruise around Green Lake smoking his pipe and blowing the manual brass oom pah bulb horn stopping to talk to as many people as possible.
Unfortunately, Jim passed away in 2014. Because of the love that Jim had for Calliope, the family kept Calliope in storage for several years. Now they are hoping to find a new owner to care for this unique boat.