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Thread: Str. Betsy Ann - Whistle

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    On the "Beautiful Ohio" at New Albany, Indiana, opposite Louisville, Kentucky

    Default Str. Betsy Ann - Whistle

    Aaron: You asked about the whistle of the BETSY ANN and since we've already had quite a lengthy thread about her roof bell, I'll begin anew! The only information I have about the whistle, aside from what you already know, is that it came from the STELLA WILDS and LULA PRINCE. Also found a notation that the whistle had some problems and needed repair during the time Capt. Fred owned the BETSY. The whistle of the Str. GREENWOOD was stowed on the Greene Line wharfboat and two barrels from it were used on the BETSY while her whistle underwent repair. As to the final disposition of the whistle, this remains an unsolved mystery. Since items like the roof bell, pilotwheel, cast iron stair treads, china and other parts (the AVALON had a small auxillary boiler from the BETSY) survived, it stands to reason that the whistle went "somewhere"! Maybe it's reposing in a basement around St. Louis (where the boat was dismantled in 1940) or elsewhere and will turn up someday!

    Herewith are several photos I had in my files that show the whistle. The first two were taken at the St. Louis levee in the late 1930's by Miss Ruth Ferris after the BETSY had become a towboat. The third image, given to me by Capt. C.W. Stoll, was taken from the Str. TOM GREENE during the 1930 race with the BETSY ANN at Cincinnati. The TOM won. C.W. notated that visible in the pilothouse are Capts. Fred Way and Jim Brasher.
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Name:	Betsy Ann Upper Decks & Pilothouse  RF  1930's.jpg 
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Name:	Betsy Ann Pilothouse & Whistle  RF  1930's.jpg 
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Name:	Betsy Ann Race With Tom Greene 1930  Lodder.jpg 
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  2. #2


    Hi Keith,

    Thanks for the posting on Betsy's whistle. There's some information contained herein that I didn't know so will add this to my files.

    Maybe one day the original whistle will surface along with a story about where it's been hiding all these years.

    I'll see if I can't find a way to make a recording of my copy when I blow it later this summer on steam and send it to Franz for inclusion with the rest of the boat whistle on dot org.

    Thanks again for the information and the great pictures Keith!

    Last edited by inactive user 01; 05-14-2009 at 04:09 PM. Reason: Mis-spelled Betsy, my Cousin would shoot me.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006


    The auxiliary boiler was scrapped in 1968 (I think) when the Brown Fintube boiler debacle occurred. We had shore power for electricity and an electric fuel pump for starting up -hence the boiler was no longer needed.

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