Chappo

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Chappo (#127191) (1896-1897), wood-hulled twenty-foot sailboat built in Santa Barbara by William Bates in 1897. On August 15, 1897, she was lost when her anchor chain broke while she was anchored at Chinese Harbor, Santa Cruz Island during heavy northwest winds. Her four crew made it to shore.


In the News~

August 18, 1896 [LAT/SB]: “William Bates is now constructing a boat that is intended expressly for skipping over the water and not through it. His boat will be sloop-rigged, twenty-six feet overall length, with ten feet beam, and will have about eight hundred feet of sail when complete. Mr. Bates designed and is building this racer after the plan of the old-style New England Cape cat, a veritable ‘sandbag,’ and will draw only three inches of water forward and ten inches aft, with a knife center-board. They are known as ‘bouncers,’ and hard to beat. This one will be competed in about two months. It will have a fine cabin and will race anything in the channel. Mr. Bates talks of naming her Chappo.”


May 23, 1897 [LAT/SB]: “A post office inspector arrived from Los Angeles on tonight’s train, and tomorrow her will measure the new additions to the local fleet in the channel, including Messrs. Newton and Bates’s yachts, Captain Larco’s Lizzie Belle W and others. The new law as to the use of gasoline launches for passenger traffic has made this visit of inspection necessary.”


May 24, 1897 [LAT/SB]: “Special Deputy Collector Charles J. W. Sjoberg came up from Los Angeles last night at the request of Inspector C. M. Bell, and at 10 A.M. today made official measurements of the two new yachts recently launched by Messrs. Newton and Bates.”


June 6, 1897 [SBMP]: “A yachting party, the guests of Mr. William Bates and his new boat, left yesterday for the islands, expecting to return this evening.”


June 10, 1897 [LAT/SB]: “William Bates and party, who sailed away in the Chappo on Sunday, are camping at the islands…”


June 21, 1897 [SBDN]: “William Bates’ pride goes ashore on Santa Cruz Island. News was received here this morning of the loss of the Chappo, a yacht recently constructed by W. Bates, in Chinese Harbor, during the windstorm of Monday, a week ago. It seems the yacht was sailed into the harbor and that the men aboard could not get her out. They then anchored her, rowing ashore in a small boat. During the storm of June 14 she dragged her anchor, going shore in the rocks, where it is reported she went to pieces. Besides William Bates there were on the yacht, George Culbertson, Mr. House and a man by the name of Alex.”


June 23, 1897 [SBMP]: “Deputy Collector C. M. Bell received last night, the necessary papers, blanks and instructions for an official report on the wrecking of the yacht, Chappo, at Santa Cruz Island. It seems that the boat was out without a license and without permission, and had a revenue cutter happened along, Chappo would have been liable to confiscation. When on a recent visit here, special collector Charles J. W. Sjoberg gave permission to local crafts, including Chappo and La Olita to sail about the harbor, but not to go away until their masters had received the necessary license, which could not be given until the official number and name of each boat had been properly carved, the boats inspected and other legal requirements complied with…”