Hershey

9-10 October 2014

Previous Next

Lot 150

1930 Chris-Craft 26' Model 111 Runabout "Muse"

  • Hull no. 10072

$220,000 - $260,000


250 bhp, 824 cu. in. Chris-Craft A-120 V-8 engine. Length: 26 ft.

  • Finest American watercraft built for the who’s who
  • Expertly restored and presented
  • Multi-award winner


Many of the boats of the 1920s and 1930s were purchased by famous people, or at the very least highly successful ones. Chris-Craft would even tout the owners of their boats in period advertising, as their crafts were carried as tenders on some of the most lavish yachts of the day. Those owners included Alfred Sloan, Frederick Fisher, Vincent Astor, Frank V. DuPont, William Randolph Hearst, Edsel Ford, and K. Lee Guinness.

Also included amongst that list of Chris-Craft owners was Charles S. Pearce. In 1928, Colgate and Palmolive-Peet Corporations merged, and Pearce was named its president. He also served as the president of the International Cellucotton Company. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin in 1900, he became an active alumnus and served as a trustee of the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF), along with the president of the Pullman Corporation and former Wisconsin Governor Walter J. Kohler. WARF provided funding to commercialize ideas developed through the university, including Warfarin, the most commonly prescribed oral anticoagulant drug in North America. Pearce’s office was located on the 37th floor of the Palmolive Building in Chicago, one of the most prominent buildings in the city.

Charles Pearce also enjoyed his recreational time in northern Wisconsin, on Red Cedar Lake, near Birchwood. On May 26, 1930, Chris-Craft Corporation shipped this Model 111 Runabout, hull number 10072, to Wisconsin through the Wilson and Richardson Dealership in Chicago. Hull 10072, the 72nd 26-foot Runabout built in 1930, was equipped with a Chris-Craft A-120 250-horsepower, 824-cubic inch V-8 engine and a 19x24-inch propeller. Green leather upholstery was specified, as was as a Loraine spotlight. Pearce’s Runabout carried the name Muse right from the factory.

Mr. Pearce enjoyed the boat for several years, but as time and progress marched on, Muse eventually concluded her useful life as a “yard boat” in southern Illinois. She was later discovered there and moved to Minnesota, where she passed through several subsequent owners. Muse was purchased by her current owner in 2004 and then placed in the capable hands of Nelson Boatworks in Minnetrista, Minnesota. There, she underwent an extensive examination of restoration work that had already been completed, which included a new bottom and the addition of new decks and transom. The original hull sides were in remarkable condition and kept original. The Model 111 was finished, prepped, and detailed with an eye toward the show circuit. The original green leather upholstery was re-created by Rod Souza in California, and the instruments were restored by Mark Clawson. She also received a jaunty Dietrich convertible roadster top. Included in the sale of this craft are a custom-built tandem axle trailer and two full mooring covers.

While her original A-120 engine was lost to history, Muse has been fitted with a correct-type A-120 engine that was originally installed in hull number 10057. The engine was restored by Long Island Boat Shop in New York, an engine builder noted for the restoration of rare marine engines. It has most recently been serviced, tuned, and water-tested by Freedom Boat Service, and it carries the original and desirable twin-carburetor fitment.

Since restoration, this stunning Runabout has been shown to the delight of wooden boat aficionados. She has been awarded Best of Show at Keels and Wheels in Seabrook, Texas; Where It All Began in Algonac, Michigan (held at the original Chris-Craft factory); the Les Cheneaux Antique Wooden Boat Show in Hessel, Michigan; and the BSLOL Rendezvous on Lake Minnetonka in Minnesota.

This beautifully presented Muse is sure to inspire its next owner for years to come.

Alexander Weaver

aweaver@rmsothebys.com

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

asabatie-garat@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

bruprecht@rmsothebys.com

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

dswig@rmsothebys.com

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

drose@rmsothebys.com

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

dgould@rmsothebys.com

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

gduff@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

jauerbach@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

kforry@rmsothebys.com

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

mmalamut@rmsothebys.com

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

msquire@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

mfairbairn@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

ocamelin@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

pdarvill@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

pfisher@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

smyers@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

tvandervelden@rmsothebys.com

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more