MANRY, ROBERT N. (3 June 1918-21 Feb. 1971), who sailed the 13 & 1/2 - ft. sloop Tinkerbelle across the Atlantic, was born in Landour, India, to Presbyterian missionary Dr. James C. and Margaret Manry. He left India in 1936, studied briefly in China, and enrolled at Antioch College in 1937, receiving an A.B. in 1948 after service during WORLD WAR II. Manry worked as a newspaper reporter Washington Court House, Ohio, and Pittsburgh and Erie, Pa., before coming to Cleveland in 1953 to work at the PLAIN DEALER as a copy editor.
Manry's enthusiasm for boating began on the Jumna River in India, but he could not afford his own, second-hand boat until 1958. Manry first sailed Tinkerbelle on Lake Erie in 1959, improved his sailing skills, and modified his boat. Taking vacation time and a leave from the Plain Dealer in 1965, he left Falmouth, Mass., on 1 June for Falmouth, England, 3,200 miles away. The voyage took 2 & one half months, during which time Manry was knocked overboard 6 times and had to repair a broken rudder. His progress was covered by news services, and the Plain Dealer flew his wife and 2 children to England to meet him. Manry landed at Falmouth on 17 Aug. 1965, completing a 78-day voyage. Manry wrote a book about his adventure, Tinkerbelle, and donated the sailboat to the WESTERN RESERVE HISTORICAL SOCIETY.
Manry married Virginia Place in 1950 (d.1969); they had two children, Robin and Douglas. He then married Jean Flaherty. Manry died of a heart attack in Willowick and was buried in Mt. Lebanon Cemetery in Mt. Lebanon, Penn.
Robert Manry Papers, WRHS.
View image at Cleveland Memory.