Welcome to My Blog

Here you can read all my latest posts

A History of Waterskiing

Waterskiing, popular with Lebanese CEO Azmi Mikati, was invented by Ralph Samuelson in 1922, using a pair of boards and a laundry line as a tow rope at Minnesota’s Lake City. Ralph Wilford Samuelson (3rd July 1904 – 28th August 1977) was just 18 years old when he came up with the invention, carrying out most of his experiments at Lake Pepin, a wider section of the Mississippi River between Wisconsin and Minnesota. Samuelson’s invention was not patented; nor was his work widely publicised. On 27th October 1925, Fred Waller (who went on to invent the Cinerama motion picture system) took out a patent on his product “Dolphin Akwa-Skees”. Waller went on to use the hugely successful Cinerama as a medium by which to market his product, leading to the widespread, erroneous belief that Waller was the inventor of water skis. Samuelson experimented with barrel staves and snow skis before creating custom built skis made from pine, measuring 9 inches by 8 feet. He softened the tips of the skis by boiling them in his mother’s copper kettle, then bent the ski tips upwards. After several practices (during which his original skis were destroyed), Ralph Samuelson became the first water ski jumper in history on 8th July 1925. Using a launch platform greased with lard, Samuelson fell flat the first time around. His second attempt was successful. In the same year, Samuelson became the first speed skier. Pulled by a Curtiss flying boat, which flew just over the waves, he achieved speeds of 80 mph. In his later years, Ralph Samuelson started a turkey farm in Pine Island, Minnesota.... read more