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2010 Sternwheel Towboat Calendar available

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    Bob's explanation is about the same as what I've read. Once-upon-a-time early Diesel engines were also referred to as "Oil engines", or "Diesel oil engines". For example, the operator's manual for the Barbara H's 1940 Fairbanks-Morse (published in 1936) explains the other types of oils (other than "Diesel Oil") that the engine can burn, one of those being oil derived from whale fat!!

    Basically combustion is created from the compression of an oil, rather than aspritating a vapor from a more flammable source, such as gasoline. And since it's done by compression, an ignition system with sparks plugs and magneto is not needed.

    I only used the Oil Engine term for this calendar as a different way to say these were not steam sternwheel towboats, without having to use the word "Diesel" again.

    Sam, your 2 calendars shipped today. Thanks for the order! Now lets see how long the postal service takes to get your package only 38(?) miles down the road to you!


      Mr. D's Machine

      During the Second World War, the Japs and Jerrys (PC?) developed engines that ran on about any liquid that could burn and push a piston. So.... I imagined early "oil" engine ingenuity that ran on heavy oils, even waste or crude. Why not?

      It's been said that Herr Diesel (actually born in Paris) was interested in using powdered coal, vegetable and peanut oils to fuel his first compression engines, but they were not popular. Only recently, with the rising costs of petroleum-derived diesel fuel has interest shifted back to utilizing other energy sources to drive Rudy D's invention. Interestingly enough, Aldolphus Busch, the St. Louis beer baron, was said to have bankrolled the first practical diesel engine made in this country.

      We'll keep a lookout for the USPS delivery of your celebrated calendar. Are they still using the same old grey mules on the Ohio River mail route?
      Attached Files


        Just a friendly reminder that we still have plenty of 2010 Sternwheel Towboat Calendars in stock, for those who plan to order, and are looking for a unique & practical gift item.

        Proceeds from these calendar sales significantly help our non-profit maintain this +86 year-old vessel.

        (see 1st message in this thread for ordering info).

        Thank you!
        Attached Files


          a lot of early boats and ships, ran on black oil or " bunker C " , what was left after all the good stuff was taken out. It had to be heated with steam to even get it to flow. Am I right ?


            Case Study: 9 Lives of the M/V KANAWHA

            One of the featured boats in the 2010 calendar in the M/V KANAWHA. This diesel-electric sternwheel towboat was built by Howard Shipyard in 1924 for the U.S. Engineers. (photo #1, courtesy of Dan Owen)

            In 1958 the KANAWHA was sold to Dr. Walter Johnston of Vicksburg, who converted her into an excursion boat. Dr. Johnston had been instrumental in bringing the SPRAGUE to Vicksburg for the sum of $1, in 1948. He died tragically in 1964 during his salvage efforts of the Civil War gunboat CAIRO.

            After Dr. Johnston's 1961 rebuild, the boat initially retained the name KANAWHA, but was renamed BELLE CAROL a few years later (photo #2). Following Dr. Johnston's death, Capt. Oscar Woods took the boat to Del Ray Beach, Florida to run excursions. The venture was a failure and the BELLE CAROL returned to Vicksburg by 1968.

            The boat changed ownership, names and locations several times over the next 40 years. (the 2010 Calendar has all the details)

            Surprisingly enough, this boat still exists today as the TARLAN ROSE, beached on the Atlantic coast near the Hampton Inn at West Atlantic City (photo #3). You can see where various owners have added freeboard to the hull over the years. Not sure how long she will last beached in saltwater!
            Attached Files


              Captain Lou Plumlee

              The BELLE CAROL was in Nashville when the DELTA QUEEN landed there in 1970. The BELLE's skipper was Cap'n Hawley's and my good friend, Captain Lou Plumlee who started his long and illustrious river career rafting on the Cumberland River in 1904. Cap'n Lou filled in as Mate on the AVALON, at times, and I had the distinct honor of working for him when he was there in those later AVALON days.


                There's a name I hadn't heard in a while, but I certainly do remember Capt. Plumlee, who visited aboard the BELLE OF LOUISVILLE a few times and was kindly.

                The new Sternwheel Towboat Calendar arrived at my landing and, as usual, is a dandy! Thanks very much -- and well done thou faithful servants!


                  Hey Steve thanks for the calender, great turn around time. I had it in a couple days. Have you got the book on John Beatty?


                    Thanks Mel, glad to hear U.S. Mail boat is running on a fast bell.

                    Unfortunately we have sold out of Barbara's Beatty's Navy book very recently. I don't know if there are plans for a second printing or not. You might check Used copies turn up now and then.


                      Sam, I've added this info to my "BELLE CAROL" file. Thanks!

                      Dan Owen also shared a photo from his collection of the KANAWHA at Del Ray Beach, Florida. It's probably circa 1964 when she is still the KANAWHA, but would be renamed BELLE CAROL in the not too distant future.
                      Attached Files


                        thanks Steve I will. I appreciate that.


                          Mel: If you can't find one, I have one you can borrow...and it is well worth reading. Cap'n Walnut.


                            Thank you Cap I'll look around a bit and if'n I dont find one I'll sure take you up on it. Yeah I'm sure its well worth reading. My experience with Cap'n Beatty was mostly when he Towed the DQ while her wheel was down back in 1980. I got a good pic of the Imogene Igert towing us but never got one of the Claire E Beatty. and then I have some private footage Cap,n Bob Reynolds lent me years ago.