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DQ layup in RI 1954

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Old 09-17-2009, 09:55 AM
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Rock Island, Illinois mile 480 UMR
Posts: 3,869
Default DQ layup in RI 1954

Today in History notes that on this date in 1954 the DELTA QUEEN limped into Rock Island after running through herself. I've posted a lot on this previously, and since I'm less than 24 hours from flying to Oregon I don't have time to repost everything, but here's the gist of her stay:
Somewhere below RI, the DQ ran through herself on the starboard side. She came into the Rock Island levee and remained here until Sept. 26. This was the longest period she was ever laid up during a season in her entire career. This happened on her first ever Cincinnati/St.Paul round trip. Passengers were given the option to stay on board or to be taken back to Cincinnati. I believe about a third of the passengers stayed on. During the stay here, local people came down and took pax on tours - I've posted pix that CW took at the Kahlke Yard and on the Hennepin Canal via this opportunity. Passengers also availed themselves of local establishments, which at the time were quite plentiful within walking distance, including the 20th St. Strip. Each day our local newspaper had pictures and feature articles about the incident. Capt. Charles Brasher was Master and his wife and daughter were aboard, as were CW and MaryJane Stoll. Letha Greene came over immediately and was here throughout. She detailed the time in Long Live the Delta Queen, Chapter 12 pp. 66-71. The identical parts were bought from the owners of the DK and were flown in here on Flying Tiger Airline. At the time, this machinery was the heaviest cargo shipment ever flown in to our airport. Engineers and crew from the boat were assisted by personnel from the RI Arsenal in removing the old piston/cylinder and installing the one from the DK. One morning the brakes on a car parked on the sloping levee gave way, and the car rolled into the river, striking the hull of the DQ. The headline next day: "DQ passengers on top of the news". It had happened while they were in the Orleans Room eating breakfast. My family went down every evening and sat on our campstools just looking at the boat for an hour or so, and talking to passengers. I suspect we even talked to Mrs. Greene, but I didn't know her at the time of course. The DQ left here about 3:30 on Saturday afternoon Sept. 26. I missed that as I was in the middle of my birthday party, grrr. She headed back downriver for Cincinnati in order to get back in time for a New Orleans round trip. She did make it to St. Paul the next fall.... Please check the archives of .org for my previous postings and pix.....I've tried to repost pix and can't.
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