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"Towboat Talk" - Verity, Sebald, Weeks

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    "Towboat Talk" - Verity, Sebald, Weeks

    Shipyard Sam mentioned seeing the GEORGE M. VERITY underway in the Cincinnati harbor. Here is a somewhat pale image of her passing under the Suspension Bridge. The late Delly Robertson, of New Richmond, Ohio, was a skilled photographer and took a number of outstanding color slides of the VERITY and other steam towboats -- that were fast fading from the scene -- as they passed through the Cincinnati area. The slides were bequeathed to Dale Flick, who has graciously shared them for programs several times at MOR S&D Chapter meetings.

    The WEBER W. SEBALD, as previously discussed, was formerly the JOHN W. WEEKS, built at Dubuque in 1926. She was renamed in 1948 when sold to the Armco Steel Corporation. Herewith are two images of her underway.
    Attached Files

    MORE Towboat Talk:

    In 1956 the WEBER W. SEBALD and J.T. HATIFIELD staged a race at Huntington, WV, that went from Proctorville to the Chesapeake Bridge. In 1960 the SEBALD was donated to the city of Ashland, KY for use as a marina, the engines and boilers scrapped. In 1969 the city became fearful of the rapidly deteriorating hull and ceased using her. The whistle and one of her nameboards were given to the river museum at Marietta and the roof bell was mounted on a stand in front of Ashland City Hall. On November 2, 1970 the boat sank in the Kanawha River at the landing of the Mountain State Construction Co., St. Alban's West Virginia. As reported by Capt. Bill Judd, the sternwheel shaft has been removed from the wreck through the efforts of Capt. Nelson Jones & crew to become a display at the Point Pleasant River Museum.

    Photos herewith:
    (1) J.T. Hatfield / Weber W. Sebald Race at Huntington - 1956
    (2) Weber W. Sebald at Ashland, Kentucky - 1960 - courtesy of Capt. David Smith
    (3) Sebald sunk in the Kanawha River - August, 1975 - Photo by Jim Swartzwelder
    Attached Files


      Has anyone seen or know if digital copy of the 1956 Today Show and race between Weber W Seabald & JT Hatfield? I understand it was a two day episode with the then host Dave Garroway, who spent both days on the WW Sebald.


        *RE: Keith's "Towboat Talk"*
        Morning, Steamboating colleagues:
        WOW! Keith really jolted me good with his great photos and "Towboat Talk" above. I well remember the VERITY, SEBALD, OMAR and others steaming up and down here by old Coal Haven Landing when I was a kid. Capt. Bill Judd also has vivid memories of them. I also remember hearing them at night down around Dayton Bar blowing those 'wildcat whistles' when needed. If they had to break a tow to navigate down through the Cincinnati bridges they laid in at the big concrete ice breakers at Coal Haven. And it seems to me the VERITY and SEBALD burned coal until the last. Anyway, thanks for the memories. Some years back on .org I penned a true account titled 'When a shantyboater shot a steamboat.' I was a kid then and my dad and I couldn't believe we saw it with our own eyes but we did.

        Neal, I well remember that race you mention. It was on TV I recall seeing it in old Black/White. Good luck on finding a digital copy. That was a LONG time ago now and I remember all those clouds of rolling black steamboat smoke. Cheers!

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


          Hey Rip VanWinkle Flick ;-)

          Dale, if you look closely, you'll see Keith posted this 8 years ago. Someone just added a comment this week, which pulled it back up to the forefront. It IS interesting of course, and indicative of what we used to have on this board, but no longer do very often.


            *It's RipVan Winkle*
            Hi, Judy! Thanks for dropping the shoe above. DUH! on my part. This post double catraract eye surgery not what it's cracked up to be. I usually have my reading glasses around my neck but...well. I agree that history on this board still important even if "no longer...very often." Sign of the times.

            R. dale Flick
            Old coal Haven Landing, Ohio River, Cincinnati