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Old 11-22-2009, 12:44 PM   #1
baja haha
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Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

"The Compleat Goggler
Being the First and Only Exhaustive Treatise on the Art of Goggle Fishing. That Noble and Excellent Sport Perfected and Popularized by Guy Gilpatric in the Mediterranean Sea - Though Long Practiced Elsewhere by Other Benighted Savages;

Setting Forth the Proper manner of Making the Goggles, Spears and Other Needful Gadgets Together with Descriptions of Many Marvels Witnessed Upon the Bottom of the Sea And Fully Exposing the Author's Cunning Methods of Swimming, Diving & Spearing Fish and Octopi."

By Guy Gilpatric

1938 Dodd Mead & Company, New York City, NY

Hard cover with a dust jacket

182 pages; excess of 30 illustrations approximately 25 pictures, several taken underwater

The very first modern printed document chronicling the genesis of "goggle fishing" or as know today "spear fishing."

It it a collection of short goggling /spearfishing stories written by Mr. Gilpatric for the
Saturday Evening Post during the years 1934, 1935, 1937 & 1938.

There are very few of the original books on the open market, and there apparently is no clear estimate of the number remaining.

Few modern divers, including my self, would not have had the opportunity to own or read the Compleat Goggler if it had not been for the insight and courage of the founder of Skin Diver Magazine. Mr. Charles "Chuck" Blakeslee. He entered into a relationship with the original publisher, Dodd Mead and company who were still in business in 1956 to use the original plates to reprint 1200 copies of the book under the SDM banner in 1957 with an added forward by Mr. James Dugan, a very popular writer of that era and the US public relations agent for Cousteau; who at that time was almost unknown in the US or by the world.

The Skin Diver magazine reprint was listed a $5.00 dollars a copy but only a few books were sold, so the remaining books were converted into a marketing inducement. Purchase a subscription to Skin Diver Magazine a receive a copy of the book. Even then very few were sold.

In late 1960s the original owners , Chuck Blakeslee and Jim Auxier sold Skin Diver Magazine to the giant speciality magazine company Petersen Publishing in Hollywood. All the remaining editions of the SDM Compleat Goggler which were stored in boxes in the hall way of the firm's Lynwood office were "disposed with extreme prejudice " in the Long Beach California dump by the new owners of Skin Diver Magazine.

Epilogue:
Guy Gilpatric purchased a home on a hill over looking Santa Barbara California where he and his beloved wife spent their remaining days together. They passed away in June 1950

The Saturday Evening Post ceased publication in 1969

Chuck Blakeslee is alive and well and lives in a small northern California community with his wife Jere.

Jim Auxier passed away about 15 years ago at his daughter's home in Georgia

The current market value of decent used original copy of the compleat Goggler is in excess of $1000.00
The current market value of a SDM reprint of the compleat Goggler is in excess of $300.00.

The great pioneer spear fisherman/author/ world explorer Dr Professor Hans Hass who is alive and well today was a young man on a vacation in France when he was introduced to goggle fishing by Mr. Gilpatric. He is the only person remaining alive who knew Mr. Gilpatric and was mentioned in the book.

I have had the opportunity to have meet Dr Hass & his lovely wife Lotte on numerous occasions beginning in 1959 and have The Compleat Goggler inscribed by him on the pages he was mentioned. They are both alive and well and living in Liechtenstein
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Old 11-22-2009, 01:08 PM   #2
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

Nice. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 11-22-2009, 01:40 PM   #3
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

It's shame two of my childhood hero's took their lives, I believe Guy ended his
life along with his wife when she was diagnosed with breast cancer.
Jacque Mayol hung himself on Dec 22, 2001 on the island of Elba. I had met him several times when He was a Dolphin trainer in Miami, and later when he filmed the Big Blue.
Sincerely Don Paul

Last edited by Don Paul; 11-22-2009 at 04:07 PM.
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Old 11-22-2009, 02:14 PM   #4
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

i just saw The Big Blue for the first time not too long ago. great film
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Old 11-22-2009, 04:44 PM   #5
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

I have a VHS copy of The Big Blue, it's the director's cut, and it's almost 3 hours long!! Incredible movie.
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Old 11-23-2009, 09:08 AM   #6
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

As expected HalibutMike & Don Paul !

I seriously doubted if any one else has read or even heard of the book, which is the fountain head of spear fishing..Now I know, there are two on this board. I had anticipated that some of the others who had knowledge of Mr.Gilpatric would add some thing to the post...sad isn't it?

Don Paul.

For about 20 plus years I have been chairman and driving force behind the "Gilpatric project" A lose group of international diver-historians (or is is historian-divers?) who have been attempting to piece together the life of this remarkable man, especially as related to "goggling" as recreational diving was originally known

After learning of his wife's DX of breast CA which was incurable in the 1950s and essentially a death sentence the Gilpatric's returned to their Santa Barbara home. Guy shot his wife Louise 3 times in the head and himself once. Their bodies were discovered the next morning lying in the hall way by a friend. The date was June 4, 1950...

I have visited the home and photographed the hall way were the event occurred. The owners at that time were unaware that any one so famous had lived there and certainly were unaware of their deaths that occurred in the hall way.

It is known that Dr Hass & wife Lotted visited the Gilpatric after WW11. Cousteau was introduced to diving via the Compleat Goggler after receiving a copy of the as a gift. According to his biographer James Dugan when Cousteau made his first trip to US one of his main objectives was to meet Mr Gilpatric, but he was too late.
~~~~~~~~~
RE JM..met him once...He was a diver of a different sort, had a different drummer than most..About all I want to write about him..

sdm
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Old 11-23-2009, 09:20 AM   #7
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

Baja haha,

is there a PDF or other format of the book which you could send out or could be bought?

Thank you,
.Larry O M. . .
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Old 11-23-2009, 11:19 AM   #8
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

Hey, Baja haha, I love this topic! Very interesting (and sad) to hear what became of Guy and his wife. Must have been true love.

I had heard of Compleat Goggler and was wishing I could read it, but I didn't know of anyone that owned it. So when I saw one for sale on the internet about a year ago, I bought it for $200 (had also read that it was worth $1000, so it seemed like a good buy).

Anyway, I love that book! I love the way Guy writes and was pleasantly surprised by his sense of humor. It's also amazing to imagine being a front-runner of spearfishing -- with no one to guide you, having to make your own equipment, not knowing if a sea monster was going to eat you, etc.

Another fascinating fact....spearfishing was cropping up in several places at the same time. In California, the Bottom Scratchers were figuring out how to spear fish, and in Florida, Art Pinder's father was also just starting to develop the sling and diving for fish. All of them were using goggles around those years.....the 1920's and 30's. I've had the privilege of listening to many of Art Pinder's stories which I tried to capture in a book (be happy to send you a copy if want). I don't claim to be a great author -- just wanted to capture that great piece of spearfishing history before it was gone.

By the way, have you heard of the book, "Spearfishing and Skindiving the Florida Reefs" by Hope Root? It was printed in 1955, and I enjoyed that as much as Compleat Goggler.....could not put it down.

Anyway, some of us do appreciate this type of information....keep it coming if you have more.
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Old 11-23-2009, 11:40 AM   #9
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

Yes very cool topic!

I have heard there are several "3rd world country" divers who are still making there own goggles and spears.
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Old 11-23-2009, 12:16 PM   #10
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

Quote:
Originally Posted by baja haha View Post
I seriously doubted if any one else has read or even heard of the book, which is the fountain head of spear fishing..Now I know, there are two on this board. I had anticipated that some of the others who had knowledge of Mr.Gilpatric would add some thing to the post...sad isn't it?
Well, since its a big deal, I can assure you that many others, including me, have heard of the book, although I haven't read it. I read "Under the Red Sea" by Hans Hass when I was a kid though, although I never met him.

You covered the subject very well, and there was nothing I could add. If you had added "if you have heard of Gilpatrick and his book, say aye" then I would have responded, and I'm sure many others would have too.

What is sad is your patronizing attitude toward those who don't share your exhaustive knowledge of spearfishing history and your interest in it. Some of us are still diving and looking forward rather than backward.

Its good that you want to educate us, but sometimes you come across as just wishing to show off your knowledge and put down those who don't know as much about spearfishing history as you do. The education is welcome, and will be more effective without the put downs.

Last edited by Bill McIntyre; 11-28-2009 at 11:18 PM.
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Old 11-23-2009, 12:35 PM   #11
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

I am also a bit of a dive historian. I worked for Bill Johnston on the boat the Bottom Scratcher before his retirement and had Jack Prodonovich build all my guns.
I am not trying to take away from what these pioneers accomplished I just think we give them too much credit. They inspired us to do what we love but we must think about what man has accomplished in the history of time. Aristotle was designing submersibles in 360BC.
It wasn't until the industrial revolution that trading of goods allowed some of our 'pioneers' resources that gave them access to the parts they needed to build the stuff to make freediving easy.

Here are some other unknow facts I stole from :
http://www.seasabres.com/Safty-educa...ime%20line.htm

1797 - First Diving Suit German mechanic Karl Heinrich Klingert creats a device which is the first to be called a "diving suit”. It consists of a jacket and trousers made of waterproof leather, a helmet with a porthole, and a metal front.

1825 - An Englishman, William James, develops a system that several historians consider to be the first true scuba. It employs tanks of compressed air and a full diving dress with a helmet.

1836 - Charles Deane publishes the first "how to" diving manual.

1843 - The first diving school was established by the Royal Navy.

1893 - Louis Boutan invented the first underwater camera. He later publishes a handbook for underwater photography, La Photographie Sous-Marine.

1912 - The U.S. Navy tested tables published by Haldane, Boycott and Damant.
1925 - A very successful self-contained underwater breathing unit is introduced by Yves Le Prieur.

This is is just a sample of the stuff that was already in use when Guy, Jack and Cousteau developed their gear.
It is hard for me to believe that the American Indian did not use a spear underwater for generations, especially in California with its rich coastal environment. These are the unsung heroes.
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Old 11-23-2009, 01:53 PM   #12
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill McIntyre View Post
Well, since its a big deal, I can assure you that many others, including me, have heard of the book, although I haven't read it. I read "Under the Red Sea" by Hans Hass when I was a kid too, although I never met him.

You covered the subject very well, and there was nothing I could add. If you had added "if you have heard of Gilpatrick and his book, say aye" then I would have responded, and I'm sure many others would have too.

What is sad is your patronizing attitude toward those who don't share your exhaustive knowledge of spearfishing history and your interest in it. Some of us are still diving and looking forward rather than backward.

Its good that you want to educate us, but sometimes you come across as just wishing to show off your knowledge and put down those who don't know as much about spearfishing history as you do. The education is welcome, and will be more effective without the put downs.
Bill
you very eloquently wrote, what I myself was thinking.





y
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Old 11-23-2009, 02:02 PM   #13
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

http://used.addall.com/SuperRare/sub...oks&store=ZVAB
Addall is a great site for finding books and receiving the best prices.
Seems like there are still a few floating around out there.
m
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Old 11-23-2009, 02:20 PM   #14
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

I read the Compleat Goggler 8-10 years ago by having my local library get it from the Library of Congress as an Interlibrary Loan. I think there was a small charge.
I don't know if this is still possible. Perhaps when a book gets to be so valuable the LOC won't loan it out.
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Old 11-24-2009, 10:17 AM   #15
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Re: Book-compleat goggler--guy gilpatric

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Originally Posted by LOMartin View Post
Baja haha,

is there a PDF or other format of the book which you could send out or could be bought?

Thank you,
.Larry O M. . .
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Larry,

Very, very good question.

No electronic copies available at this time..

I had thought of somehow coping mine but they are bibliphilia mint and all inscribed by Dr.Hans Hass-- On the pages he was mentioned in the book, so my copies are just too darn valuable not only to me but to the future Diving/Spearfishing bibliophile collectors.

However, I will investigate the possibility of a non-destructive copy if that is at all possible--then again what would a disc be worth to the Spearfisherman? Judging from the age, income and experience of the "average" spear fisherman it would probably not economically feasible to me the producer and the spear fisherman as the purchaser.

Time will tell...
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