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HomeNL-2012-03 HCC History 1964-1977

A view Upstream: History of the Houston Canoe Club

Greg Walker

The Houston Canoe Club has a long and distinguished history, perhaps much longer than many members appreciate. In an effort to highlight that history I offer this "View Upstream" of documents gleaned from the club archives. Here is a document that traces the founding and early years of the club. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I have.


I have put a PDF file of the scanned original hand-typed document pages on the web site in a new Documents folder named "Club History". The link to the PDF document is: here.

The text below was produced by digitally scanning the original pages and converting the images to text.  It is posted here with it's original font and line spacing, and also all of it's original flaws, to keep it as faithfully true the the original as possible.


Greg Walker


   A group of interested Canoeists met at the home of J. L. Bludworth and talked of organizing a Canoe Club. On October 7, 1964 this interested group was called to a special meeting at the Assembly room of the Park Place Police Station by Jimmy Jones to organize a Canoe Club. A slate of officers were nominated as follows: Jimmy Jones Commodore, Fred Hurd Vice-Comm. and Jo Anne Hurd as Recorder and Purser. These officers were elected by acclamation. Jimmy Jones was acting at this time as Chairman. Marie Hurd took over as Recorder in the latter part of the year. The name C.A.T. Canoe Assn. of Tex. was discussed, and the name decided was to be the Houston Canoe Club as we did not want to be a Club governing the entire state of Texas. On October 28, 1964 a meeting was called to order to discuss and draw up a Constitution and By-Laws and the following members to serve on the Board of Governors: Lyn Maughmer, Homer Liddell, and J. L. Bludworth. At the Nov. 3, 1964 meeting an emblem and pennant designed by Lyn Maughmer was voted on and accepted by club members. Colors to be red, white, and royal blue. The emblem of the club shall be a Bobcat paddling a canoe. The pennant of this club shall be triangular in shape, two units high by three units long, white field, blue border with a bobcat portaging a red canoe. It was decided on by members and all memberships paid by March 1, 1965 to be Charter Members, this being our annual meeting. The following were listed as Charter Members according to payment of dues in following order:

1. Fred Hurd    
 9. James A. Jenkins
2. Kenny Hurd
10. Paul Carr
3. Lyn Maughmer
11. Harold D. Edwards
4. Bobby Suttle
12. A. R. Long
5. Dwane Dutoifc
12. A. R. Long
6. Dr. E. L. Burnett
14. Phil Hartell
7. James H. Jones
15. N. V. Denton
8. Homer Liddell
16. Sam Hare

(For more on several of these club founders and the Bobcat club

logo, see the "Texas Water Safari" article in the February, 2012 newsletter.)


   During the past 13 years club members and guests have canoed in Texas Waters the following: San Jacinto, Colorado, Trinity, San Bernard, Guadalupe, Medina, Rio Grande, Pertanalis, Brazos and San Marcos River. Creeks: Oyster, Spring, Village, Clear Creek, Buffalo Bayou, Dickinson, White Oak, Greens, Armands and Bastrop Bayous. We have camped in our State Parks and Forests and Lakes, our National Parks and forests. The club has held family cruises, stag runs, polka runs, gar shoots, Easter Egg Canoe hunts, Halloween Scavengar hunts, even a cruise for the blind. Some of our members have canoed out of state on the Colorado and Cossatot Rivers in Arkansas, Snake and Hoback in Wyom. Green River in Utah and even waters of Canada, both in racing and cruising and camping in the Canadian Wilderness. The club held canoe races each year for her first 8 years until Texas Canoe Racing Assn. was organized. The first Texas Water Safari was held in 1963 and was won by two Houston teams: Jimmy Jones and Lyn Maughmer, Fred Hurd and Sam Hare. They were the only two teams out of a entry field of 68 to finish the race. All four of them helped organize and were charter members of the Houston Canoe Club.
   Since the year 1963 we have had members to enter, finish and win the Water Safari several times. The club has also had National winners. Kenny Hurd Men's National Kayak Champion. Tim Janak and Ken were C-2 winners also that year (1974) Ingrid Kast the Woman's Kayak Champion. In 1974 again we had National winners Nova Hall and Pricilla, 1975 Nova Hall and Ingrid Kast and 1976 Nova Hall and Carol Keirnan. (1974-6 th. 1975 10th., and 1976 10th.)

   The Ho uston Canoe Club have had Honorary memberships, honoring Frank Buck, who helped us to organize and Father Dyer Sullivan, besides others mentioned and one life membership in the Lyn Maughmer Family. We have also had sadness with the loss of members through death. Of the 16 Charter Members, 13 years latter, we still have 2 paid up members and 1 of the 2 still active, this being Fred Hurd. In March 1966 new officers were in order and the following were elected. Comm. Jimmy Jones, Vice-Comm. Fred Hurd, and Recorder Betty Maughmer. In March 1967 Comm. Paul Carr, Vice-Comm. Jimmy Jones and Recorder Betty Maughmer were elected. Due to illness and then death in the Maughmer family, this being Lyn, Marie Hurd took over for the remainder of year as Recorder. IN March 1968 Comm. Paul Carr, Vice Comm. Garry Knight and Recorder Marie Hurd were elected to serve for a year. March 1969 again Paul Carr, Comm. Vice-Comm. Wayne Walls, and Recorder Marie Hurd. March of 1970 again Comm. Paul Carr, Vice-Comm. Wayne Walls and Recorder Marie Hurd. March 1971 the club elected Paul Carr as Comm., Vice-Comm. Joe Bowen and Marie Hurd Recorder. At the end of 1971 the Houston Canoe Club honored Marie Hurd with a beautiful clock and plaque for her services from 1964 to 1971 as a voluntary secretary in need of trouble or as a elected officer. During these 8 years she had not missed a single meeting.

   March 1972 the following officers were elected to serve as follows: Comm. Art Turner, Vice-Comm. Pat Simmons and Recorder Betty Walls. After 5 month Pat Simmons took over as Commodore and then was elected to fill out the term of office as Comm. due to the death of Art Turner. Wilson Downs was elected to serve as Vice-Comm. to fill that vacancy. An Appreciation Dinner was held for Paul Carr and his wife Mary for their services given to the club as members and elected officers. The Club gave a memorial for Art Turner in his name in the amount of $200.00 towards the purchase of Armands Bayou. $100.00 from the sinking fund and $100.00 from personal contributions. In December of 1972the H ouston Canoe Club held an Armand Bayou Canoe Day and after a full day of canoeing for fun $100.00 was raised by contributions and sent to the Armand Bayou Bund.
   March 1973 elections: Comm. Pat Simmons, Vice-Comm. Wayne Walls and Recorder Betty Walls. Jerry Fruit as Fleet Capt. and Fred Hurd on the Board of Governors. In the summer of 1973 the Club voted to send $200.00 from the sinking fund to the Trinity River Task Forces to keep the Trinity River hopefully from becomming the Trinity River Barge Canal. $60.00 was also taking up by personal donations. The By-Laws and Constitution were revised, voted on and passed with Joe Martin acting as chairman of committee. Burt Reynolds was given an Honorable Membership in the Houston Canoe Club.(The movie "Deliverance" came out the previous year.)

March 1974 officers were as follows: Comm. Pat Simmons, Vice-Comm. Roy Tyrone and Recorder Marie Hurd. Fleet Capt. again Jerry Fruit and Wayne Walls to join the Board of Governors. This year the club gave Mayor Fred Holfheinz an honorary membership. Also this year we decided to have the club INC. Tom Cunningham gave his assistance in this matter.
March 1975 Pat Simmons was again elected Comm.. rather Pres. due to INC. Joe Wolf, Vice-Pres. and Treasurer Marie Hurd. Fleet Capt. Doug Irby and Joe Martin on the Board of Governors. After the resignation of Doug Irby, Morris Ballew was elected to fill that office. A Canoe Pier was built at Armands Bayou by members of the Houston Canoe Club to make canoeing a little easier for guests as well as members to launch our canoes. On March 1976 Joe Wolf was elected to act as Pres. with Lewis Massengil as Vice-Pres. and Judi Wood as Secretary. Fleet Capt. Morris Ballew and Pat Simmons Board of Governors. The club with Joe Wolf presenting a lovely plaque to Pat Simmons for his faithful services to the club for four years as Commodore and other duties and to Marie Hurd again for faithful services. The big event for this year has been the Cruise for the Blind in which the Houston Canoe Club had a part with the United_States Canoeing Assn. Texas Delegation held at Armands Bayou in May. Wesley Liles as Chairman, held a day cruise on Buffalo Bayou with the Bayou Preservation Society in hopes of cleaning, clearing and perserving Buffalo Bayou as a future project for beautification of Houston.
   There has been many many more things the club has done during the 13 years we have been organized but this is only a few highlights.

Marie Hurd