Legendary arts teacher Palmer Sharpless taught many George School students to build canoes over his long tenure, but he only ever crafted one himself, marked with his distinctive “S” carved in the front crossbar. This priceless piece of George School history will go to the highest bidder at the upcoming Embrace the World dinner, dance, and auction event on Saturday, October, 20.
The canoe was donated to George School by John J. S. Burton ’58, who recalls Palmer asking him if he wanted the canoe one afternoon. “In addition to being our class sponsor, [Palmer] was my freshman mechanical drawing teacher, my sophomore print shop teacher, my junior wood shop teacher, and my senior year co-op assignment supervisor,” said John. “I remained friends with Palmer and his wife Joan over the decades. On one visit he asked me if I would like to buy his canoe, the only one he had ever made himself. I said absolutely, yes.”
Palmer’s one-of-a-kind canoe is up for auction during George School’s 125th celebration, Embrace the World. Proceeds from the event will support tuition assistance and faculty development. Auction items are available for a sneak preview and tickets are now on sale for Embrace the World at www.georgeschool.org/embracetheworld.