Saturday, February 28, 2009

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

East Coast Surfing Prior to Duke

Skipper Funderburg, author of "Surfing on the Cape Fear Coast," has been conducting further research on the older images in his book. The image below has now been identified as being hand-dated July 15, 1912. Of course, the postcard itself was printed even earlier.

For surfing, this is quite an historical find, as it definitively documents surfing (albiet prone surfing, or bodyboarding) on the East Coast prior to Duke's bodysurfing before the 1912 Summer Olympics [Stockholm, Sweden, late June to late July], on Long Island, N.Y., and his board surfing at Atlantic City, New Jersey, after the Olympics.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Inkwell Beach

Links about Inkwell Beach, Santa Monica, and Nick Gabaldon, are at Sabrina's website:

"Life's A Beach..."

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Wrightsville Body Boarders, 1920s

Here's another Wrightsvillde, North Carolina, postcard from Skipper Funderburg's "Surfing on the Cape Fear Coast." It is identified as being printed sometime in the 1920s. Exact date is still being researched. It clearly shows kids riding wooden paipo's (bodyboards) and at least one alaia-sized board:

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Wrightsville, N.C., 1912

We continue to spotlight some of the gems in Skipper Funderburg's "Surfing on the Cape Fear Coast." Here are two Wrightsville postcards, the bottom one hand-dated as July 12, 1912. A little hard to see in this view, but in the lower postcard, toward the viewer's bottom left, you will see a kid with a Hawaiian-style paipo (bodyboard):

"In the book, Land of the Golden River, Vol. 1, published in 1975, local author Lewis Phillip Hall (1907-1980), wrote of his personal experiences surfing Wrightsville Beach. 'In the early twenties (1920's), before the jetties were constructed, a sand bar ran the entire length of the beach. We swam out to the combers (breakers) where (it was) making up [probably: "macking up"]. At times there would be ten or fifteen youths in a crowd. It was a beautiful sight, ten surfers riding the cresting wave a long time... I'll have to admit, however, that we did not ride our boards standing erect, but lying halfway the board.'"

Friday, February 13, 2009

Wrightsville, N.C., 1909

Skipper Funderburg has written "Surfing on the Cape Fear Coast" and was kind enough to send a signed copy. Rare amongst surf writers to be so thoughtful! It's a beautiful book and gives the rich heritage of North Carolina surfing in images and text. Significantly, Skipper brings to the fore what many of us have only conjectured: that surfing on the East Coast was taking place in isolated pockets prior to Duke Kahanamoku's demonstrations in 1912 and 1916. Here's a Wrightsville postcard hand-dated 1909:

A closer look: