Treasure of An Island – Featuring American Arts, Crafts, & Antiques
“To visit Boateak, one can motor, row, sail, or swim, but not drive . . . The voyage begins on the shore at Clayton. Adventurers in search of the antiquated and the exotic must travel north-northeast from Cantwell Pier 65 for two nautical miles. . . Once they have made the voyage, visitors may spend hours among artifacts from bygone eras and ponder workmanship of about 300 craft artists from throughout the country who contribute to the treasure chest of collectibles. . .
“The booty of Bluff Island – navigational instruments dating to the 1720’s, scrimshaw carvings . . . classic boat replicas standing five feet high . . . ‘pond models’ – model boats several feet high and a century or so old – are very rare. Christmas ornaments, jellies and preserves, or kitchen items and other goods.”
The Boateak features a wide variety of unusual art and craft products, and there is a steady stream of new merchandise, so each visit promises to be an adventure. The store has a 5′ x 2′ table made from the hatch of a World War II-era liberty boat, and jewelry and crafts made by sailors whiling away long hours at sea. Among the favorite items are a number of sailor “folk art” items passed down through the ages, such as flowers carved from pith and other forms delicately inserted in uniquely shaped bottles of all sizes, and yarn-winders made by sailors to replace the need to hold their hands out for their wives’ knitting.
The Boateak is located in a renovated boat house that was built on Bluff Island in 1900 by Col. Kessler. In 1982, a former servants’ quarters above the boathouse was ripped apart by 95 mph winds during a thundrous April storm. During the rebuilding process Cookie and Matt discovered that the peaked roof over the boat slips was large enough to accommodate a studio, presenting an opportunity to combine a love of art with their love of the 1000 Islands Region. The unique quality of the 1000 Islands to attract visitors from all over the world provides a marvelous opportunity for artists and craftsmen to gain wide exposure for their works.
The Boateak offers a truly unique shopping experience. You will surely want to include a visit to this treasure island when you explore the 1000 Islands region on your next vacation.