1/10/19: Creole Queen, Mississippi River
207 years ago today, 'New Orleans', the first steamboat to successfully navigate the Mississippi River, arrived in New Orleans, from Pittsburgh. 'New Orleans' was owned by Robert R. Livingston and Robert Fulton (yes, the famous inventor) and built and captained by Nicholas Roosevelt. That ground-breaking voyage took 2 1/2 months during which 'New Orleans' made stops in Cincinnati, Louisville, St. Louis, Memphis and Natchez. Only 9 years after the Louisiana Purchase, much of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers were uncharted and unprotected. Livingston noted vast stretches of the rivers' banks were unbroken forests, some inhabited by Choctaw. The journey experienced a devastating 7.5 earthquake near Madrid, Missouri, which destroyed natural landmarks and altered islands used for navigation.
Despite the dangers, and the skepticism of the public (as well as investors, and even the boat's pilot) 'New Orleans' arrived safely in New Orleans on January 10, 1812, and in the process, transformed the vision and potential of the American interior. Suddenly upriver travel and trade was economically viable. This would lead to land values increasing, cities growing, populations and culture migrating.
Within 14 years there would be 143 steamboats traveling scheduled trade routes on the river.
'New Orleans' sank in 1814 near Baton Rouge, but its impossible to calculate just how much 'New Orleans' transformed the United States. Смотреть полностью