Monday, September 28, 2009

W.J. Lucas Ford, Sr.

Skipper Funderburg has unearthed another early Twentieth Century photographic gem. It is of William Johnstone Lucas Ford, Senior (Alexander Hume Ford's nephew), riding Canoes in 1923.

William Johnstone Lucas Ford, Senior, resided on the Big Island, Hawai'i. He is listed in Alexander Hume Ford's 1945 published obituary.

Skipper wrote the following about the image:

"My hunt on the old history trail of Alexander Hume Ford carry's on to a further point. With happiness, I share this 1923 surfing image of Alexander Hume Ford's nephew, William Johnstone Lucas Ford, Senior. Grande Lucas was residing on the Big Island of Hawaii at the time of Alexander Hume Fords death in 1945. I am well aware the number of surfing photographs from this era are very limited, so I am delighted to present this rare historical treasure to the surfing world. Above and beyond my discovery, I hope a revived public awareness of Alexander Hume Ford will help lead to further discoveries about this important surfing family."

My best, Joseph "Skipper" Funderburg

Skipper added:

Attached is the back of the photocard. It reads:

"This is a picture of your son W.L. Ford, riding the surfboard at Waikiki Beach."

"P.S. It cost four dollars to have it made."

"4/14/23 Waikiki Honolulu T.H."

The T.H. is an abbreviation for Territory of Hawaii.


  1. Hi Malcolm,
    May I first state, I fully support your decision to transition Legendary Surfers into the Surfing Heritage Foundation. Cecil Lear has been encouraging me to enrich Dick Metz, with my back east surf history work, so your decision furthers that goal.

    As to the William Johnstone Lucas Ford, Senior surfing image, I agree. the very special shot was likely taken from an outrigger canoe, something unheard of in that day. William Johnstone Lucas Ford, Senior loved the Big Island, particularly Milolee Bay and Hookena Bay. Their family were regulars at the Volcano House. Their home on the Big Island at 1336 Kino'ole Street, Hilo was known as "South Carolina Headquarters in Hawaii." Grandee Lucas was a graduate of The Citadel, Charleston, South Carolina, after which, he made his way to Hawaii to find his Uncle Alec, Alexander Hume Ford. Grandee Lucas met Martha Gilberta Duncan Holland on the Big Island and they married in 1923. Martha was born on the Big Island in 1905, her family well connected to the sugar industry. Their home on Kino'ole Street was built by George Duncan, a design engineer who worked for in the sugar industry in the late 1800's, early 1900's.

    Lucas & Martha Ford had two sons born on the Big Island.Their two sons are William Johnstone Lucas Ford, Junior and Wentworth "Wents" Fredrick Ford ~ both are very fine gentleman.
    They are the two gentleman I am currently interviewing and working with.

    Wentworth Fredrick Ford recently recalled visits by Uncle Alec, who stayed at their Kino'ole Street residence several days or weeks at a time .It was a pretty big deal when Uncle Alec came for a visit. Uncle Alec gave the family a huge painting that was the focal point of the biggest room in the house. The painting was of a surfer riding the waves at Waikiki. The railroad train passed in back of their residence and Uncle Alec would flag it down The engineer let the two boys ride up front and pull the whistle ~ toot toot toot.

    William Johnstone Lucas ford, Junior published a book in 2006, An Ethical Physician. The book is about their biological grandfather, Dr. James G. Hopkins, who left the reconstructed south for the Big Island in the late 1800's. It is an epic, riveting journey through the Old American West, the Hawaiian Islands and Untamed Mexico.

    We all met in Pawley's Island, South Carolina during the summer of 2009 for a family reunion. The family has honored me with a title, The Alexander Hume Ford Family Historian. I plan to stay the course and forge on!

    My best, Joseph Skipper Funderburg

  2. AnonymousJune 23, 2010

    You two guys, Malcom & Skipper make a fine team! Thanks for writing such great things about my Grandfather and Great-Uncle.

    Neely Ford

  3. AnonymousJune 29, 2010

    A. H. Ford's nephew, William Johnstone Lucas Ford, had two sons, W. J. Lucas Ford, Jr., and Frederick Wentworth Ford IV. Wentworth was named for his uncle F. Wentworth Ford, III, who had no children.


Mahalo for your comment!