*Jim & Loretta's marriage date/Maple floor*
Morning, again, Jim. I ruminated after posting my last above. The story of the maple skating ring floor being used for other boats at the yards a good one. They also employed the ethic of what Alan Bates later wrote in his "Do it Yourself." Every penny saved was a penny earned. What year were Loretta and Jim married--about 1906? Years ago, Loretta loaned me that memoir, manuscript with the history of the yards titled 'REMINISCENCES by John C. Howard - July 16, 1903." Incredible information I retyped with some 29 Pgs. I swiftly returned to Loretta the original document that had been typed on then a kind of thin onion skin paper. There is no notation on who typed it but I bet it was done in the mansion on that vintage typewriter now on display. The narrative stopped short at the bottom of the one page with no additional pages continuing. Literally stopped in midstream. I wondered why it wasn't finished or, perhaps, other pages had been lost? I imagine now I may have one of very few--or the only surviving copy. If it was put on deposit at the university in Indiana or the original lost in the fire, I have no idea. Are you aware of this? Back then I was at University of Cincinnati when I transcribed it. I sent a copy off to Capt. Fred Way, which he gushed it, "Was pure gold!" but I don't think he ever used it in any of his REFLECTOR writings. I misplaced my copy here when moving to my then new house. After Fred's death, I inquired about it to Woody Rutter. In days he found it, popped in a large envelope and mailed off to me. Fred Way never threw one thing away. John's first paragraph begins with, "My first trip down the Mississippi was in the summer of 1854...I went to Memphis on the FANNY BULLITT on a collecting tour." I presume in business language of the day "collecting tour" could have referenced his collecting payment for work on boats the yard built. Then, with the prevailing national shortage of currency he 'could' have collected in gold, silver. Then the U.S. recognized and allowed use of even foreign coinage and specie. Well, what do I know?

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