*DELTA QUEEN 'Restoration*
Steamboating colleagues,
Hi, Russ. Just back from a wonderful Christmas dinner with my 102 year old mother in her retirement center. I understand your interest in, possibly, documenting the 'repairs, renovations, restoration' of the DELTA QUEEN but, personally, feel this is an initiative best taken on/assumed by those most directly involved in Houma--not 2nd and 3rd parties--with their own PR and legal people. The DQ is and has been "a private for profit corporate enterprise outside of the public domain." People are free to give of their personal time, money as they see fit but this enterprise has/needs assurance of financial and banking institutions on a much higher order. Again, a number of odd 'rumors' filtering back here RE: financing, what people think the U.S. Coast Guard will and will not do etc. She is not a museum vessel such as the Str. W.P. SNYDER or the steam towboat GEORGE M. VERITY, Str. TICONDEROGA, Shelburn Museum etc. I am one who has been on, in, around old GREENE LINE STEAMERS and the DELTA QUEEN, knowing the Greene family about as far back as anybody to early 1950s here with Jim Reising, Kenny Howe, Capt. Don Sanders being others. The issue is very close to us, emotional but should not take on the aura of a fixation, monomania. She is what she is no more and no less. I know for certain that if Capt. Tom Greene still alive today with any interest or control in 'his' DELTA QUEEN, more than a few people would have pulled up hard by the hair where it hurts with what has been said, claimed, rumored. Let's sit back and let this process play out for the best. Those most directly in control, ownership, authority should be the ones to step up, speak up. Again, stories and rumors abound. It could come as a shock for a few people to open their mail box one day seeing an expensive envelope and letter inside on ivory bond paper with an impressive name, address of a legal firm opening up with, "Dear....., it has been brought to our attention that you have..." Get my gist? Betty Blake use to fume talking with me, "I don't know who are so-called friends are supposed to be as they are causing more trouble than our enemies." [Meaning those not in support of the DQ]. I worked long, hard on the first restoration program for the Str. W.P. SNYDER at the Ohio River Museum and then wrote the proposal for the very first 'Tall Stacks.' Be careful what you wish for.

R.Dale Flick
Old Coal Haven Landing, Ohio River, Cincinnati.