Illustrated Steamboat Postcards
Tombigbee River Boat Landing at Columbus, Mississippi
Post Card post marked February 28, 1909
Published by Divelbiss Book Store
Printed in Germany by
Leipzig, Berlin, Dresden
Larger boat in background:
MARY S. BLEES 1899-1917
Way's Packet Directory Numbers 3838
built in 1899 at Mobile, Alabama
Owned by John F. Klein; William Ruprecht (1915)
First home port, Mobile, Alabama.
Built for the Mobile-Tombigbee River trade.
In the fall of 1914, she ran New Orleans-Baton Rouge.
After she was sold in 1915, her cotton guards were removed, and she then ran St. Louis-Illinois River Sold to Eagle Packet Company in February 1917 and renamed PIASA
Smaller boat in foreground:
Built in 1898 at Columbus, Mississippi
Sunk at 10 Mile Shoals near Columbus, Mississippi in the Tombigbee River on February 2, 1906
This postcard was dated 25 December 1906 on the front, not post marked so it must've been enclosed in an envelope when it was sent.
Information on verso:
Raphael Tuck & Sons
ART PUBLISHERS TO THEIR MAJESTIES THE KING AND QUEEN.
Post Card Series No. 23709
"In the Land of Cotton."
Jim Hale sent me some additional information on the LITTLE OUACHITA:
THE BOAT IS THE "LITTLE OUACHITA" BUILT AT HOWARD'S IN 1899 TO RUN ON THE UPPER OUACHITA IN LOUISIANA TO BRING COTTON DOWN TO MONROE TOO BE THEN SHIPPED ON THE "AMERICA" TO NEW ORLEANS. CAPTAIN COOLEY HAD BUILT THE "AMERICA" IN 1898 AND THEN HAD THE "LITTLE OUACHITA" BUILT THE NEXT YEAR. HE SOLD THE "LITTLE OUACHITA" IN 1906 TO THE ALABAMA RIVER PACKET CO.
THE PILOT HOUSE WAS RAISED AND THE NARROW TEXAS BUILT IN FRONT OF AND BEHIND IT AFTER IT GOT TO MOBILE. THE "LITTLE OUACHITA" WAS LAID UP IN 1909 OR SO ABOVE MOBILE WHERE A PICTURE FROM THE MURPHY LIBRARY WAS TAKEN. THE BOAT LOOKED A LOT BETTER BEFORE THE TEXAS WAS ADDED.
The steamboat LITTLE OUACHITA pushing barges (above) was the same boat that Robert Rucker painted as a "haunted" sternwheeler and we paired his painting up with a photo from the La Crosse collection here: illustrations8.
BELLE OF THE BENDS
Way's Packet Directory Number 0531
Built in 1898 at Jeffersonville, Indiana by Howard Ship Yard for the Vicksburg and Greenville Packet Company. Original price $33,500; home port or owner's residence circa 1898 was Vicksburg.
One of the more handsome of medium-sized sidewheelers; had all the Anchor Line grace, double stages and all.
Ran Greenville-Vicksburg for many years—from 1899-1904 or later made twice weekly mail runs between those two cities for the packet company of that name.
Was flagship of the parade celebrating the opening of the canal at Vicksburg when the Yazoo River mouth was diverted on January 17, 1903—quite an occasion inasmuch as Vicksburg had virtually been cut off the river since Centennial Cut Off which happened April 26, 1876.
Sank at Peeler's Landing, 40 miles above Vicksburg, September 1909, and was raised.
Sank at Fitler's Landing, 20 miles below Lake Providence during a snowstorm in February 1910 and was raised.
Another version states that she was caught in a heavy snowstorm while proceeding up the Mississippi River shortly after leaving Hayes Landing, Mississippi on February 10, 1910 and ran aground at full speed on a sand bar; estimated damage $10,000.
Then operated by Captain Morrissy; ran excursions at New Orleans in the winter 1910-11.
Used in the Nashville grain trade after 1904. Was converted into an excursion boat and renamed LIBERTY.
In 1940 her roof bell was at the Altheimer Plantation near Pine Bluff, Arkansas.
WM. GARIG far left at New Orleans. Nice silk screen effect employed in the color lithography Published by The New Orleans News Company, New Orleans, La., printed in Leipzig, Dresden, Germany. We have another photo of the WM. GARIG in my collection, the 2nd image on Photos 5, a favorite of Jim Hale's.
Way's Packet Directory Number 5812
Built in 1904 at Jeffersonville, Indiana
Her machinery and boilers came from the JULIAN POYDRAS.
Original owners Baton Rouge and Bayou Sara Packet Company
After 1908 owned by the Carter Brothers
Officers in 1917:
Captain Sam Cotton (master); Jerry Hicks (pilot)
Ran on the Mississippi and Ouachita rivers
Her last run in the south was New Orleans-Camden on the Ouachita River in 1917. In March, 1918 she was sold to the Eagle Packet Company, rebuilt and renamed GOLDEN EAGLE.
On the left in "UNLOADING AT THE LEVEE" is probably the second boat to be named ROB'T E. LEE 1876-1882 after the first one, the "racer" ROB'T E. LEE had been dismantled. This is a detail of a postcard printed in a printing process produced by The Albertype Co. of Brooklyn, NY (they are credited in the lower left hand corner). Ralph Du Pae copied this from the one in my collection and it was a favorite image of his and it was always in the boxes of 8 x 10's that he took with him to all the steamboat buff gatherings in such places as Marietta, Ohio and Keokuk, Iowa.
There is a sign on the starboard side of the hurricane roof, the lettering of which had been "whited out" by the publisher. I believe that it probably said ST. LOUIS AND TENNESSEE RIVER PACKET COMPANY.
Attached is a postcard of the rough 'n ready Annie P. (1904 - 1909), who according to Fred Way Jr. was the only steamboat in the 20th Century to reach Denison, Texas (which is on the Oklahoma border) via the Red River on April 22, 1905.
There's a comical air to the picture with the the dog standing on the shore and the lady with the big bonnet on the fantail looking at the sternwheel. You can read promotional banners for a molasses company and a brewery on the portside.
5.20 x 8.75 outsized dye cut postcard with cartoon graphic of the PRESIDENT Published by Grant L. Robertson, Metairie, Louisiana Mirro-Krome card by H.S. Crocker Co. Inc. San Francisco, Calif. Looks like circa 1950's. The characters on the docks, fishing etc. are fun. Also attached a photo of the Streckfus CUB PILOT pin from the PRESIDENT which you might prefer to use with this rather than the color photo composite I sent yesterday with the pin suspended over the PRESIDENT.
Streckfus Steamers issued this pin 1.20 inches in diameter that was probably intended to be given to honored guests who visited the pilot house of the PRESIDENT and were privileged to "steer" for a while under close supervision.
Way's Packet Directory Number 4578
Sidewheel Excursion boat
Built in1924 at Midland, Pennsylvania (hull)
Formerly the CINCINNATI
Owned by Streckfus Steamers, Captain Verne Streckfus (master)  New Orleans Steamboat Company 
After being sold to Streckfus Steamers, she received an entire new superstructure and came out on July 4, 1934 as the best excursion boat on the rivers. She could carry 3,100 passengers. In 1944, after she became the full-time excursion boat in New Orleans, her guards were glass-enclosed. In 1978 she was converted to diesel.
After serving as a casino boat at Davenport during the 1990's she was retired and replaced. The party who bought the PRESIDENT planned to turn her into a hotel so she was dismantled and the pieces taken far from the river to a location near St. Elmo, Illinois where she sat for two years unassembled until the pieces were moved to Altamont, Illinois where the parts began to disintegrate. Finally the parts were sold as scrap. Bill Wundram in the June 29, 2015 edition of the Quad City Times wrote an informative biography of the PRESIDENT that told her story on up to her inglorious finale. Here is the link to the online version of Bill's article:
STEAMBOAT ON BAYOU TECHE
From the original Lithograph by Don Brown
On the back of this museum postcard is printed:
Don Brown is a nationally known Southern artist who is head of the art department at Centenary College, Shreveport, Louisiana. His works have been exhibited in New York, Paris and other centers and he is represented in many of the leading museums of the United States. Louisiana scenes and people are his favorite subject matter.
Nicely painted commercial artist's watercolor promotion art reproduced on a 5 1/2 X 8 1/2 postcard for an excursion boat operating on the Delaware River at Philadelphia around 1970. Source: Steamboats.org article on Dubuque-Built Diesel Excursion boats, by Travis Vasconcelos.
With the exception of images credited to certain institutions,
most of the images on this page are from a private collection.
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