Brothers Bill and Harry Allen on Lake Minnetonka.
Via Mike Bloom
Harold “Harry” Allen (DN 2452) died Tuesday night, September 2, 2021, after a courageous battle with cancer.
Harry was a talented helmsman who raced multiple classes of iceboats in the winter and raced E and A scows in the summer. And, if Harry ever needed a crew, more often than not, one of his three daughters was on board sailing with him.
As much as anything, Harry loved to iceboat. Harry raced Nites, DNs and his Stern Steerer. Harry was as popular as he was generous. If iceboaters were setting up on Minnetonka, 99% of the time the boats were in front of Harry’s house. There was not a more welcoming or friendly sailor on the ice.
Harry’s passing leaves a huge hole in the Minnetonka sailing community. The DN fleet sends condolences to his wife LeeAnne, daughters Emily, Katie and Mary, and to the rest of the Allen Family.
May Harry’s memory sail on.
This Facebook photo posted by Minnetonka’s Bill Allen is too tempting not to post. Bill wrote, “Ya. Went iceboating today – my bro and the granddaughters.” Their smiles indicate sailing must have been good.
Jim Gluek (Skeeter, DN, and Nite class) came across some family history in the form of this vintage trophy won by his grandfather back in 1927 on Lake Minnetonka. Jim’s grandfather raced a Johnson Boatworks-built B Class Stern Steerer. Jim also mentioned that when conditions are right on Minnetonka, Harry Allen rigs up his vintage B Class Johnson stern-steerer and takes it through the paces. (What iceboater wouldn’t want a shirt with that beautifully designed graphic?)
The Johnson Boatworks was founded by John O. Johnson in 1896 on White Bear Lake in Minnesota. In addition to building iceboats, Johnson was instrumental in scow and other soft water designs. (Johnson Boatworks is now known as White Bear Boatworks. )
More History: “Old ice boats: not for faint of heart”
Johnson Stern-Steerers have been featured over the years here on iceboat.org. This picture dates from 2013 when Fond du Lac iceboaters Dave and Jeff Lallier gave their then 84 year-old mother a ride in a Johnson B. Note the “banana” spar.