River Surfing: Setting the record straight

My name is Don Piburn and I live on the island of Oahu. You may have noticed that my profile picture is of me on a river, not an ocean wave.  I am considered a bit of a pioneer in the latest re-emergence of the sport of board surfing on stationary river waves (http://riverbreak.com/news/stories/the-lunch-counter-trilogy/). I am researching for an article I am writing about river surfing history.
Per John R.K. Clark’s Hawaiian Surfing: Traditions from the Past, the Waimea, Wailuku, and Wailea Rivers are just some of the places cited in 19th Century in Hawaiian language newspapers as places where Hawaiians river surfed going back to antiquity. Although these periodicals mention river surfing by name (heʻe puʻe wai), there are no written descriptions of how the sport was actually performed. Clark cites contemporary examples of river surfers, however none are stand up surfers that can be dated as far back as the early 1970s.
The reason this is important is that Bavaria, Germany professes to be the birthplace of standup river surfing beginning in September of 1975. What would challenge that narrative is conclusive pictures, newspaper articles, or period writings proving that people on other surf-craft, be they paipo, body board, or surfboard that not only rode river waves prone (kipapa), kneeling (kukuli), drop-kneed (hoʻokah kuli), but also and especially standing (kū) at any time prior to 1975.
Does anyone know of have pictures, stories, connections, resources, or ideas to help me with my research?
Don P.

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Comment by Scott Bishop on September 28, 2019 at 4:57pm

Interesting question. I have not but I'll keep my ear to the ground. 

Good luck!

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