Category Archives: Steamboat Birthplace

YATES MARINE CONSTRUCTION CO. WHEELING WEST VIRGINIA 1953 – 1967

YATES MARINE CONSTRUCTION CO. WHEELING WEST VIRGINIA 1953 – 1967 by John Bowman In 1953, YATES MARINE CONSTRUCTION CO. (Yates, Thomas ‘Jack’ and Pluckebaum, Arthur) began building diesel towboats, ferry flats and barges in Wheeling, (Wheeling Island) West Virginia. Yates and Pluckebaum had worked in the Louisville, Kentucky, Jeffersonville, Indiana boat yards, and in 1953, […]

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BLOCH BROS. “MAIL POUCH” CHEWING TOBACCO

BLOCH BROTHERS TOBACCO COMPANY by John Bowman MAIL POUCH CHEWING TOBACCO and BLOCH BROTHERS TOBACCO COMPANY dates from 1879, when Samuel S. Bloch and Aaron Bloch started their business with ten women at 1501-1503 Main Street in Wheeling, West Virginia. The tobacco business amounted to a group of women rolling cigars on the second floor […]

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WHEELING’S MAIN STREET COVERED BRIDGE 1816-1832 Wheeling’s First Bridge

WHEELING’S MAIN STREET COVERED BRIDGE 1816-1832 Wheeling’s first bridge At Wheeling, Virginia (West Virginia) in the winter of 1815-1816, while the steamboat Washington, then under construction, awaited its steam machinery from Brownsville, Pennsylvania, its builder, Henry Miller Shreve had George White, White’s Lead Carpenter Samuel Wait, and their carpenters build a covered bridge. This was […]

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WHEELING’S “FORT RANDOLPH” U.S. Troop Garrison 1794-1815 Wheeling’s Other Fort

“FORT RANDOLPH” U.S. TROOP GARRISON 1794-1815 WHEELING’S OTHER FORT by John Bowman Wheeling’s “Fort Randolph” was named for Edmund Jennings Randolph, a highly respected Virginian who served as an aide-de-camp to General George Washington in 1775 and was elected to the Virginia Convention of 1776. He was Virginia’s first Attorney General and Mayor of the […]

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Steamboat Stamp WASHINGTON

STEAMBOAT WASHNGTON 1816 STAMP ISSUED MAR 3, 1989 In 1929, Garnett Laidlaw Eskew writes of Wheeling, West Virginia on page 32 in his critically acclaimed book, ‘The Pageant of the Packets, A Book of American Steamboating’: “We wonder if Wheeling knows she is the birthplace of the American steamboat. Is Midland America aware that it is […]

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WHEELING BUILT STEAMBOATS the Washington

Washington Henry Miller Shreve’s 1815 stern-wheel steam-powered Washington, built on the North bank of Wheeling Creek was the first steamboat built in Wheeling, Virginia. The Washington was one hundred and thirty-four feet in length and twenty-eight feet in width with two decks, the first double-decker steamboat. Washington had two high-pressure steam engines, the first on […]

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WHEELING BUILT STEAMBOATS the USS Signal No. 8

USS Signal No. 8 A.J. Sweeney & Son for Capt. Campbell Sweeney built USS Signal No. 8, a 190-ton stern-wheel steam-powered packet “tinclad” river gunboat, in 1862 at Wheeling, Virginia. A Federal officer of the U.S. Navy requisitioned Signal-reaching Cairo, Illinois on her maiden trip. Campbell sold her to the U.S. Navy for the sum […]

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WHEELING BUILT STEAMBOATS the Sidney

Sidney A.J. Sweeney & Son of Wheeling built the stern-wheel steam-powered packet Sidney in 1880 for Capt. William M. List of Wheeling, W. Va. William named the boat for his mother, Sidney McMechen-List. Sweeney had the hull for the boat built at the Flesher Boat Yard, Murraysville, West Virginia. At Wheeling, Sweeney completed the boat […]

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WHEELING BUILT STEAMBOATS the Liberty No. 4

Liberty No. 4 The stern-wheel steam-powered towboat Liberty No. 4 was built in 1863 for Capt. John K. Booth (his fourth “Liberty”) by the shipyard of “Wilson, Dunlevy & Wheeler”. Actually, it was started when it was Wheeling, Virginia, and completed that same year in Wheeling, West Virginia. It was the first towboat completed in […]

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WHEELING BUILT STEAMBOATS the Liberty No. 2

Liberty No. 2 The side-wheel steam-powered packet Liberty No. 2 was built by the Wilson, Dunlevy & Wheeler Yard at Wheeling, Virginia in 1861 for Capt. Charles Booth. She replaced his 1857 Liberty, recently sold to the Mason City Coal Co. T. Sweeney & Co. of Wheeling placed her machinery. She was placed in the […]

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