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Alan Bates 03-18-2007 07:00 AM

Picture of the Week
What a great picture of wharfboats and the junk they gathered. This picture captures the "feel" of a big-city landing better than any I've seen. I hope Bernd Lorenzen sees it. He is gung-ho about wharfboats at the present time.

bernd lorenzen 03-18-2007 09:59 AM

Yes, Alan.

Those heavy duty "bridges" look like they could have hold a loaded Model T truck easily. Somehow I thought that all the freight was trucked by hand aboard the wharfboat. I wonder if the other side facing the river was designed equivalent to the shore side?
I like the big lettering on the bulkhead and the crisp looking Idlewild in the background.
Thanks for sharing, Keith and Franz!

Alan Bates 03-18-2007 03:00 PM

It was customary for all sorts of trucks, wagons and carriages to enter the wharfboats. Those bridges served double duty and were used as spars to keep the wharfboat off the bank. The heavy chain in the foreground was used to moor the wharfboat. It was led to a winch so the wharfboat could be pulled toward shore during rises. The bridges were used to push the wharfboat out when the river fell. Often these moves were made with the assistance of the packets.
The river side of the wharfboats was perfectly flat and straight. Gangplanks were laid for rolling hand trucks, dollies and drums aboard the packets.

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