CROCKARD & BOOTH STEAMBOAT AGENTS
WHEELING WHARF BOAT
Authentic scale model by John Bowman
This Crockard & Booth Steamboat Agents wharf boat was built at Murraysville, West Virginia and delivered to John Crockard and Captain John K. Booth in 1889. The floating warehouse was purchased to replace “Booth’s Old Reliable” which had been in service since 1879. The wood hull wharf boat was one hundred twenty feet in length by forty-four feet in width. It was painted in brown and white with a tuscan roof. In the office was a lavatory and it was heated with a potbelly stove. It had the popular “MAIL POUCH” thermometer at the office door. Crockard and Booth would have charge of eighteen boats at the Wheeling wharf. This wharf boat would have its difficulties as it sank on April 1st of 1903, was pumped out and sank again June 21st of 1903. It was promptly raised and taken to Parkersburg for repairs and was back at the Wheeling wharf July 28th of 1903. The Crockard & Booth wharf boat would be the last to serve Wheeling. It served the steamboat Liberty for thirty years and went out of business with the Liberty in 1934.
What was a Wharfboat? If you wanted to mail a letter, you took it to the Post Office. If you wanted to send a package by train, you took it to the Rail Road Freight Office. If you wanted to send a package by a steamboat, you took it to the Wharfboat, where it was assigned to the next boat leaving for your addressed destination.
These were some of the other Wharfboats that served Wheeling, Virginia / West Virginia