JOHN BOWMAN

Author, Historian, (West Virginia History Hero) And Steamboat Model Builder......... The steamer “City of Wheeling” and the "Crockard & Booth Steamboat Agents" Wharfboat sitting at Wheeling's Wharf September 2, 1900

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Wheeling Steamboat History and other Wheeling Historical Articles by JOHN BOWMAN

STANDARD SAND & GRAVEL CO. WHEELING Towboats, Derrick Boats, and Sand Dredges by John Bowman

Standard Sand & Gravel Co. of Wheeling, West Virginia, was established in 1922.  The company started out with the sternwheel, wood hulled, gas-engined towboat Sandow built at Clarington, Ohio, which they converted to a 120 hp Bethlehem diesel in the 1930s.  In the 1930s, Standard Sand & Gravel Co. had the Sandow, the 1916, sternwheel, […]

WHEELING BUILT ‘APALACHEE’ STEAMBOAT 1890-1899 by John Bowman

The sternwheel steamboat Apalachee, the First steamboat with a composite hull built on the Western Rivers.  Western Rivers are United States Rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico. Apalachee was designed and built in 1890 by John M. Sweeney at the ‘A.J. Sweeney & Sons’ Boat Yard, Wheeling, West Virginia.  One of the last […]

WHEELING’S LINK TO THE ‘EDMUND FITZGERALD’ OGLEBAY NORTON’S GREAT LAKES FLAGSHIP by John Bowman

In 1958, the Great Lakes Engineering Works at River Rouge, Michigan, built the bulk freighter SS Edmund Fitzgerald named for Mr. Edmund Fitzgerald of the Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. who owned her.  Her 729’3” x 75’ x 39’ registered hull number was 301.  When launched June 7, 1958, she was the largest ship on […]

WELLSBURG BETHANY TROLLEY WRECK May 7, 1917 by John Bowman

The Wheeling Daily Intelligencer May 8, 1917 “Car No. 5 of the Wellsburg, Bethany and Washington Street Railway company wreck.  ONE KILLED, MANY HURT WHEN TROLLEY CAR LEAVES TRACK” “Mr. John Bowman was just getting ready to leave his home when the coach was wrecked on the southern side of the track, just below his […]

RUSSELL’S DADDY RAT© 1988 by Glinda Bowman

Now what I’m going to tell you is a true story, it’s about a black man that don’t get much glory.  He found out you never take more than you need, and he learned a lesson from his one day of greed. Daddy Rat was an old man; he was jet black, he lived his […]

AMERICA’S FIRST STEAMBOAT EXPLOSION by John Bowman

Henry Miller Shreve’s Steamboat Washington blows her head! Eight persons scalded to death!  EXCERPT from the book, “A HISTORY OF THE STEAMBOAT WASHINGTON THE FIRST SUCCESSFUL WESTERN RIVERS STEAMBOAT” © 2013 John Bowman Wheeling, WV Henry Miller Shreve laid the keel of the riverboat Washington September 10, 1815 in Wheeling, Virginia.  The sternwheel steam-powered Washington was […]

WHEELING’S MINGO and GLADES INDIAN PATH by John Bowman

INDIAN PATHS Regarding WHEELING and the Northern Panhandle of West Virginia Generally, Indians made cuts to the bark of trees creating a marked ‘Indian Path’, its long usage established a well-beaten path.  The most thorough written material on “Indian Paths” comes from Wallace, Paul, A.W., “Indian Paths of Pennsylvania”.  Delf Norona, “Eighteenth Century Paths, Roads […]

SECESSIONISTS TICKET May 23, 1861 WHEELING, VIRGINIA by John Bowman

SECESSIONISTS TICKET May 23, 1861, the people of the state of Virginia ratified the Virginia Ordinance of Secession by a vote of 132,201 to 37,451.  The Poll-book of Wheeling listed those who voted to approve the Ordinance of Secession and to secede from the Union.[1] [2] Wheeling persons voting to approve the ordinance of Secession […]

THE WHEELING SUSPENSION BRIDGE’S FIRST SUICIDE ATTEMPT 1854 by John Bowman

The First person to jump off the Wheeling Suspension Bridge. January 25th 1854, Capt. J.C. Jelly master of the steamer Albemarle, having just slipped away from the Wheeling wharf, observed a person leap from the Wheeling Suspension Bridge.  He dispatched two crewmembers in a yawl to rescue the person, apparently still alive in the icy […]

WHEELING BUILT CARRIAGES, COACHES AND WAGONS 1820 – 1920 © by John Bowman

In 1820, Joshua Bodley and Thomas M. Galley collaborated and established the “Bodley & Galley” [1]wagon factory in Wheeling, Virginia.  In the late 1820s, it became the “Joshua Bodley” wagon works, and in 1832, it became “Bodley & Richards” wagon works (Bodley, Joshua and Richards, David).  In 1865, Mr. Frome joined Bodley as the “Frome […]