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National Trust 11 Most Endangered

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    National Trust 11 Most Endangered

    Early on I had contacted the National Trust for Historic Preservation in Washington. I was told one way to get national attention and maybe some support was to nominate the DELTA QUEEN to be on their 11 Most Endangered List. The application was to be on their website in November or December.

    I had hoped by the time the application came out we would have the exemption in hand. But since that has not happened and the application is on their website now, we need a person or a few persons to help each other fill out the form and gather supporting documents. Since my work load at the office is at flood stage I hope someone else will step up to the plate and work on this. Vic Canfield had said early on he might be able to work on it. I'm not sure of his status at the moment.

    Unfortunately it is due in Washington by January 4th. The good news is we do not have to have the "owner's" approval to nominate her. I along with David Vrooman have copies of the Resolutions that have been passed. I also along with others have page after page of signed petitions in support of the exemption. I would suggest sending along the newspaper articles that have been published throughout the United States. And of course we have the on line petition with all those wonderful comments. And last but not least is the wonderful video created by Jonathon Tschiggfrie.

    All we need is someone to fill out the form and gather the information.

    Could we have a "Hero" step up to the plate on this request? Who out there could do this for our beloved DELTA QUEEN?

    THANKS. Jo Ann

    National Historic Landmarks

    I sent an email of concern to the NHL with regard to the DQ's plight. It took a month to get a response, but it sounds like there is interest in putting info on their website. Perhaps if there are few more emails it will help to validate their involvement
    Below is the response;

    We can add official information provided by our regional offices regarding
    the condition of the steamboat. Unfortunately we cannot add your web-site
    to our database, however, I will forward your message to our database
    manager so that he can have updated information on the status of this NHL.
    Once he has verified the status with the regional office, then he can add
    language about it's threatened status. Thank you for your interest inthe
    National Historic Landmarks Program.

    Neal Kapp


      I personally contacted the Indiana Preservation office and I'm sure Ohio's has been contacted as well. The Regional office for National Trust for Indiana and Ohio is in Chicago. I don't have my files with me but I believe I either emailed or mailed them a snail mail letter early on with no response. Typical red tape is so frustrating when we're fighting for the life of our beloved DELTA QUEEN.


        Frank Quinn at Heritage Ohio says that John Moore, one of his board members, is pursuing the issue with the National Trust's midwest office. He also suggests that we contact Congressman Mike Turner of Dayton (his local office number is 937/225-2843) --he's co-chairman of the preservation caucus in the House.

        I'll get back on top of this next week; this is finals week and I'm up to my ears in exams. In the meantime, the rest of you are welcome to jump in.

        Dave V.


          The hero who needs to step up to the plate should be MAL. If I were in management of the DQ and I really was serious about wanting the exemption, my corporate pride would not allow me to let well intednded passengers to do the job that I should be doing.
          The complete lack of cooperation and interest on the part of MAL for the "Save The Delta Queen" movement speaks volumes.
          Why aren't they out doing all the things people on this board are doing?????


            When Betty Blake and Bill Muster were pushing for the DQ exemption back in the early 70's, they not only had their jobs on the line (and keep in mind how few there were in "the office"), but they had a real love and feel for the old gal. Betty had known and worked with Capt. Wagner for years, and she also knew many other crew members and office personnel very well. Betty had seen thousands of kids and adults mesmerized by both the AVALON and the DQ. Even the newcomer, Bill Muster, became infected with "steamboat fever"....he didn't have to do what he did for the boat; it was the job assigned to him, but he went at it with everything he had.

            Not to fault any past management in any way, but they did what they felt they had to do: bringing in unions for political clout, outside investment to get the capital to keep going and mount the huge P.R. campaign, as well as get financial backing for a new boat (the MQ) in case they were not successful to save the DQ. All sound management decisions, and all aimed at keeping the boat running and the company afloat, but once the corporate pencil pushers got in, they had to see more than the wonderful old DQ lumbering up and down the river. Betty nad Muster had to do it, but in the end, it sent the company down a path of having to worry about other things than what was first on the minds of old management, keeping the boat running and keeping their jobs and the jobs of the crew.

            This also affected the passengers and market. As I have posted here before, Betty Blake once said that she would reward all those who wrote to Congress with an opprotunity to ride the boat....she did it by instituting weekend trips and some of the shorter trips that got many of us "hooked". A good idea from a marketing standpoint, too, since she "handed down" the DQ to another generation who could know first-hand just what stemboating was. Now we wonder why the company keeps jacking up prices, keeps saying they're catering to the higher-end clientele, etc. History shows that if they don't take care of those with maybe less money, but the passion to take the trip, then they will end up shooting themselves in the foot.

            Fred Way tried it, valiantly, in "The Log of the BETSY ANN". He tried real hard, and in the end, he had to give up and sell out.

            I hate to be so cynical, but this is how I see it. Jim and others are right; if the company does not push for this 100% and throw THEIR weight behind the effort, it cannot succeed. In the end, the upper management doesn't really care; they're business people. Plenty of other jobs. Steamboats? Nostalgia. Simply a way to make some money. Company goes belly up? Get another job.


              National Trust

              Jo An,
              If I can get my 4th quarter revenue /signoffs today I plan on taking vacation days. I may have some idle time to assist. I couldn't be further away from Wash DC if that matters...
              I will follow up with you later today.


                Just email me through this website. I check it periodically throughout the day as my work schedule permits. THANKS for all you're doing to save our QUEEN!


                  Attention: I just received a call from the Midwest office of the National Trust for Historic Preservation in answer to an email I sent to them last week. I have been informed that there is no reason to submit more than one application to the 11 Most Endangered contest. It was suggested that if we have good letters of support that a few more than the "two" suggested on the application could be submitted. These can be sent to me either by fax at 502-893-4516 or email at Since these are the only fax and email addresses I have, please do not use them for anything other than this request.

                  I sure hope that we have a problem figuring out the best few to send to Washington. I look forward to receiving them this week. THANKS for all everyone is doing. However, it seems that trying to win over our Representatives and Senators is the best route to take. We need more co-sponsors of Bill H.R. 3852. You might try contacting their local offices during this holiday while they are home and seeing if you can speak with them face to face. Good luck!


                    UPDATE: FYI

                    We were advised a few weeks ago that the DELTA QUEEN did not make the National Trust's 11 Most Endangered list. I thought readers would like to know what did make this year's list:

                    Vizcaya and Bonnet House, Miami and Ft. Lauderdale, FL
                    Michigan Avenue Streetwall, Chicago, IL
                    The Lower East Side, NYC, NY
                    Charity Hospital and the adjacent neighborhood, New Orleans, LA
                    The Statler Hilton, Dallas, TX
                    Sumner Elementary School, Topeka, KS
                    Great Falls Portage, Great Falls, Montana
                    Boyd Theatre, Philadelphia, PA
                    California's State Parks, California
                    Peace Bridge Neighborhood, Buffalo, NY
                    Hanger One, Moffett Field, Santa Clara, CA

                    MY OPINION: It appears that only the Great Falls Portage is a National Treasure, and other than the California State Parks the others are built landmarks and mostly regional in nature. But yet the trust passed over the DELTA QUEEN in favor of them. My grandmother used to say "something smells in Denmark". I think I smell something.


                      And it ain't Roses either! What a strange mix, "California's State Parks"??? Huh???
                      David D.


                        David, You are correct. It ain't roses!

                        The paragraph addressing the California State Parks says they are the country's largest and most successful. It goes on to say the system is drastically underfunded and at risk for deterioration.


                          Jo Ann,

                          Correct me if I am wrong...but, are not ALL the buildings on this list at least framed in wood? Isn't wood still flamable on land (read: total sarcasm)?

                          And Boyd Theatre ( Home ) appears to be a very large open space with all wooden interior, quite the possible fire trap! Historically, the building has been damaged by fire in the past. No one was hurt. It is very rare a unmodernized single screen (with balcony...impressive) theatre has survived to modern times. So I will grant it a place (as if I should be as bold as to think I have a say in the matter) on the list, despite not being nearly as important as the DELTA QUEEN.

                          My point is, the DELTA QUEEN is being singled out of this list because of forces we all know too well...not because she is not deserving of being saved.

                          It is too bad that politics are taking the place of reason here.



                            B - I - N - G - O !!!! Travis.


                              Charity Hospital is not wood... but it has been rendered useless by Katrina. It is not considered by most medical people to be able to be rehabbed into today's medical world...