George Pocock

In 1912 there was one boat shop on the lake, in the Tokyo Tea House on the University of Washington campus shoreline. Built in one day by Japanese carpenters for the 1909 Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition, the Tea House was a delicate post and beam structure with rice paper sliding screen walls perched over the water. In 1912, the University wanted a varsity rowing team and recruited the best rowing shell builder in the Northwest, George Pocock, to build eight-oared shells in the Teahouse. When business for shells was slow, Pocock was hired to build Boeing seaplane pontoons. Later, Pocock would build shells for nearly every racing college in the country and his boats won countless national and Olympic championships.