On the Sacramento River [1907]

It would be difficult to imagine a more perfect stream for motorboating than the Sacramento River, and the people of Sacramento and other cities along its course have awakened to the realization of what great pleasure may be derived from the sport. The river is navigable for about three hundred miles the entire year round. Along its banks there are many progressive towns and cities, and here and there a pretty hamlet, all interspersed with mile after mile of peaceful pastoral scenery. In fact, the Sacramento affords all that tends to the enjoyment of motorboating. During the past few months many new boats have been added to the motorboat fleet of Sacramento and its environs, and the coming weeks will bring forth many more attractive new ones.

The latest acquisition is a fleet of seven Mullins' steel boats, which have been in the water for several weeks. These are known as the "White Squadron." When the seven go forth in company on a cruise they make a pretty scene. These boats are owned by E. C. Cooper, private secretary to Governor Gillette.

Another new boat recently launched, is Cecil, owned by A. Henderson, and built in Sacramento by Captain W. J. Russic. She is equipped with a 10-h. Buffalo motor and made a splendid run on her initial trip. Cecil is a trim craft and is capable of making good time. Bertha K is another attractive new boat, and is also a home product. She was built by her owner, Ferdinand Kohler, and his son Victor, from Brooks patterns. Her length is 18 feet 6 inches, beam 54 inches, and she can carry ten persons comfortably. The motor is a two-cycle 4 1.2-h. Sterling.

Elinore, owned by George Locke, is a handsome boat of this year's vintage. She was built by Captain Russic and is splendidly finished. Captain Russic has also launched The Flyer, a 30-footer, for Charles Fiscal.

Captain W. J. Russic, who has been mentioned several times, is the principal boatbuilder in this section. He has a large shop situated about half a block from the river and is kept busy at all times constructing various sorts of river craft. At present he has many orders, which will keep his shop busy for many months to come. Boats built by Captain Russic have all given excellent satisfaction. He is also agent for Buffalo motors. The Buffalo is popular here.

In addition to building motorboats, Captain Russic is now erecting the new clubhouse of the Sacramento Boat Club. This is to be a large houseboat and is to cost about $5,000. The work is progressing rapidly. The hull was built in the Washington shipyards and was recently put in the water. The houseboat is to be anchored opposite the city of Sacramento. it is proposed to employ a watchman to care for the boats of members. At present the club members have their boats scattered along many different landings on the water front. The clubhouse will be the means of bringing them all together in one central location, where they can meet and talk over various topics of the river.

Motorboat racing will probably be the leading sport on the Sacramento in the near future. Many owners are already anxious to get out and give their launches a test with their rivals. When the clubhouse is completed, a regatta will probably be arranged. There are many speedy boats, and race would no doubt develop increased interest and will be a novelty along the Sacramento.

The Sacramento Boat Club is constantly adding to its membership. At present it has about forty members, and the list will no doubt be doubled in another year. Enthusiasm is just beginning to awaken. The officers of the club are Albert I. Elkus, president and commodore; Dr. I. G. Shaw, vice-president; Egbert A. Brown, treasurer; Colonel A. W. Bradbury, secretary. The foregoing officers, with the following, make up the board of directors: Warren Floberg, Fred W. Moore and Bernard R. Klune.

These gentlemen are all well-known citizens of the city, President Elkus is a prominent merchant. Dr. Shaw is a well-known dentist and Egbert Brown is assistant cashier of the California National Bank. Colonel Bradbury is assistant adjutant-general of the State. Warren Floberg and Bernard Klune are members of a jewelry firm, and Fred W. Moore is a prominent business man.

A popular form of outing along the Sacramento this year has been an extended cruise in a motorboat, for which there are unlimited opportunities. It is possible to leave Sacramento and go many miles up stream through the rich Sacramento Valley. Stops can be made at numerous small cities where hunting and fishing provide a diversion. On the river below Sacramento City it is possible to cruise to the confluence of the Sacramento and San Joaquin Rivers, and then up the latter to Stockton. Stockton is a progressive manufacturing city. Thence, it is possible to go still further up the San Joaquin to many places.

Another attractive trip from Sacramento is a cruise to Siusun, San Pablo and even San Francisco Bay. There are many points of interest around the bay and motorboat enthusiasts find much pleasure in extended excursions to the salt water.

Yachtsmen from San Francisco Bay have found good sailing on the Sacramento River, and during the present season there have been many yachts from clubs at San Francisco enjoying cruises on the river as far up as this city. Interest in river sport of all kinds promises to increase within the next year, and it is safe to predict that the number of motorboats next Summer will double.

(Excerpts transcribed from The Motor Boat, Sep. 25, 1907, pp. 11-12. )

[Thanks to Greg Calkins for help in preparing this page — LF]