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Will We Ever Know For Sure?

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    Will We Ever Know For Sure?

    What was the name of the first steamboat on Western Rivers, the Fulton, Livingston, Roosevelt boat? Was it ORLEANS or NEW ORLEANS. In the booK "WHO'S WHO ON THE OHIO RIVER" there is a whole chapter devoted to this subject. The author quoted newspaper articles and announcements published at the time and about half of them said the boat was named ORLEANS and the other half refered to the boat as the NEW ORLEANS.
    Then there is the question...sternwheel or sidewheel? Some articles stated the boat was definetly a sternwheeler.
    Will we ever know for sure?

    RE: Will We Ever Know For Sure?


    I am by no means an expert. In my research for my Fulton project the Roosevelt Steamboat was always referred to as the "New Orleans". I suspect that it could have been contracted to "Orleans" much in the same way that we refer to the North River of Clermont as the "Clermont". Here's a link that I filed: Nicholas Roosevelt's 1811 Steamboat, Dahlinger's account It gives references etc.

    Sternwheel/Sidewheeler??? I also attached 3 PDF files. From what I have found it appears that the New Orleans was a sidewheeler which would have been in line with Robert Fulton as her designer. Except for Gary Lacy most rederings including the replica show her as a barge type river boat. For some reason Gary Lacy chose to depict her as a twin to the North River. I have written to Mr. Lacy to ask where he got his information. He has yet to respond.

    I haven't found many definitive answers for the description of the North River or the New Orleans. Back then they most likely used conceptual sketches as a start and then designed on the fly without recording the details. This all adds to the confusion for anyone trying to build a model or paint a painting of these boats.
    Attached Files