Scenes from Steamboat Round the Bend
Professor Marvel's Wax Museum


Doctor John Pearly gets a wax museum that had belonged to "Professor Marvel," as a settlement from Sheriff Rufe Jeffers. He wants to run it as a sideshow on his newly acquired Claremore Queen.

Excerpts of dialogue between Doc and Rufe at Professor Marvel's museum in a tent with movie still taken during the scene:

DOC: What's that you got there?

RUFE: Why, ain't you heard? Why, Professor Marvel done skipped town owin' everybody. Left his whole show and the calliope and everything. They got a dead fish in here. They call it a whale. Why, the whole tent's just chuck full of things that'll give you the shivers. Come on in. Yes, sir. All the greatest folks in history, from John the Baptist plumb down to the king of England. There's Little Eva sittin' there. Old Uncle Tom's layin' around here somewheres.

There's been a heap of argument around town about this here whale. And Professor Marvel, now, he claimed that it's the very identical whale that swallowed Jonah.

DOC: Well, it looks old enough to be. Say, wait a minute here, Rufe. You know, I got an idea. See what you think of this, Fleety. What do you say... You want to get your money out of this, don't ya?

RUFE: Sure do.

DOC: What do you say you let me take this on the CLAREMORE QUEEN and I'll soon have your money back. And we can get Duke that appeal lawyer too.

RUFE: Well, I don't see how nobody can kick about that.


Will Rogers conferring with 1st Mate Francis Ford about changing the identities of his wax museum figures from King George to George Washington and Queen Elizabeth to Pocahontas.

round the bend

Roger Imhof as "Breck's Pappy" (on the left pointing at George Washington) comments during the tour of Doctor John's Floating Museum (conducted by Will Rogers as Doctor John):

"Friends! That certainly is a fine man. All my life I've thought about him and what he's done for our country here! I sure would like to have my old woman see him if she can get away from her plowin'!"


Professor Marvel's waxworks aboard the CLARMEMORE QUEEN before their identities were switched.

Will Rogers as Doctor John with a musket slung over his left shoulder while he carries a waxwork of "Miss Liberty" under his right arm in the cabin of the CLAREMORE QUEEN after he had moved aboard the attractions from Professor Marvel's Wax Museum. Napoleon far left Doctor John decided to "leave him alone" but would turn King George the Third into George Washington; would turn Sir Walter Raleigh into Captain John Smith and transform the two bearded Biblical prophets in soft focus in the background on the right into the outlaws Jesse and Frank James. This particular pose of Will Rogers may have been for been photographed for promotional purposes only since it doesn't seem to have been included in an actual scene in movie.


A lock of George Washington's Hair

BRECK'S PAPPY: Don't suppose you could spare me a piece of his hair, could ya?

Doctor John: Well, no, I don't . . .

BRECK'S PAPPY: Me and her'd be mighty proud to have a piece of George Washington's hair.

Doctor John: Well, I'm gonna give you a little piece here. Of course, I don't want you to have to make your wife quit plowin'.
There it is. You be very careful of that. Take good care of that.

During the great steamboat race, the crew must sacrifice the wax figures to the fire box to pick up steam to win the race. When they run out of wax figures, the New Moses convinces them to sacrifice the Pocahontas remedy. The alcohol in the bottles stokes the engines to win the race.


Harvesting of the "Floating Museum" waxworks to feed the "fiery furnace" to keep the CLAREMORE QUEEN in the race against the PRICE OF PADUCAH. Efe (Francis Ford) has got a hold of "George Washington" and Jonah (Stepin Fetchit) seems to be concerned about sacrificing "The Father of our Country."

Jonah go this name from the wax museum. One of the exhibits is a replica of a whale. When Stepin Fetchit's character - Noah - is found hiding inside the whale replica and rolls out of the whale's mouth, Doctor John dubs him Jonah.

In the background John Lester Johnson as Uncle Jeff is flourishing a rifle over his head and Berton Churchill as the New Moses is toting away the waxwork of Napoleon Bonaparte.

"GLORY be! Halle-LU-jah!" as Moses shouted as he stoked the fires aboard the CLAREMORE QUEEN to get to Memphis in time, gathering speed with crates of combustible POCAHONTAS cure-all bottles.

DIALOGUE (excerpt)

THE NEW MOSES: Repent, oh, ye sinners!

Oh, ye children of darkness...behold...the New Moses.

Fight down the demon rum!

(Moses singles out Efe from the crowd):

Brother... I was once a sinner like you.

I was a hog. I was a slave of the demon rum.

A child of hell! Yes, sir.

But I was saved by this ribbon.

It raised me from a hog to a man.

It can do the same for you.

Raise your right hand and take the pledge.

(Efe raises his right hand and in it is a bottle of whiskey)

Brother, what do I see in your hand?

Don't be a hog! Cast the enemy away!

(Efe hands the bottle to the man next to him who passes it along to others on its way overboard)

Bury demon rum in the waters of the mighty Mississippi! Fling it away, I say!

(Moses pins an abstinence ribbon to Efe's vest)

I swear that henceforth...liquor shall never touch my lips.

EFE: Me too!

MOSES: Bless you, brother. Bless you.

All dialogue in this section is derived from the "S.S. Springfield Movie Script UK - Steamboat Round the Bend" page or


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All captions provided by Dave Thomson, primary contributor and historian.