Probably a more efficient way to propel the wider square-back canoes. Or maybe stand and pole it.
I suspect the reason you felt the square-back canoe wasn't as stable is because you had most of the weight near the (narrower than middle) stern of the canoe, and a badly trimmed canoe loses stability. Ever notice that motor-boats are comparatively wide in the stern? It's not by accident - it keeps them from losing much stability with most of the load aft of midships. Even a square-back canoe is considerably narrower at the stern, and that allows it to sink under concentrated weight (with motor and operator both there)- and raises the wider middle out of the water enough to lose stability. If you go square-back, try trimming it out flatter with some ballast in front.
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