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FDRs Mississippi River Inspection

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    Money and the Mamie

    Indeed, Steve, it's always the $$$$ that "sinks" the MAMIE, along with all the problems as to ownership, etc. Since the late Jimmy Swift published my photos in The Waterways Journal in 2001, I can't count the number of calls and e-mails I've received from people interested in saving the boat. The same thing happened because of my long association with the BECKY THATCHER. If I thought it was somebody who was truly serious, I always referred them to Capt. Bill Judd for an honest assessment of the BECKY. Thank you Bill!

    Image: MAMIE S. BARRETT on the Yazoo at Vicksburg - July, 1988 - KN photo
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      Yes, it is always money that seems to sink the Mamie. I first looked at this project five years ago, back when she was in better shape, and the price tag was so steep that I couldn't tackle it at the time. Now that I've established a much better network and learned a thing or two at fundraising and putting together projects like this (non-profit and political, I might add), it's time to give it a go.

      Does anybody know a GOOD maritime attorney in Louisiana that you could refer me to? Once I launch this venture, I know the first thing I will need to do is hire an attorney specializing in ship registration that is licensed by Louisiana, to figure out the ownership and handle contracts.

      As far as I can see, the first thing is to obtain ownership and get her moved to a different location to prevent her further deterioration. After that, we'll have a little bit more time in order to get everything else in order. I'm researching shipyards right now (thanks to Keith and Steve) and am putting together a business plan. There is still a lot of work to do before I can actually launch this venture, but I believe it can be done. I appreciate, again, all the help you folks have been.


        June 3, 1945 article in St. Paul Pioneer Press

        While digging in the newspaper archives, I came across this story on the 1945 River Inspection, along with the Penniman/Mamie S. Barrett at Lambert's Landing in downtown St. Paul. Thought I would pass it along to you.

        Photo caption:
        The steamer Penniman, shown at Lambert Landing Saturday, will go on to Minneapolis preparatory to starting a down-river inspection tour Monday by Col. Malcolm Elliott of St. Louis, division engineer. The section in front is called the quarter boat.

        The River
        By Dorothy Warren
        St. Paul Pioneer Press – June 3, 1945

        A TOUR OF INSPECTION of river, harbor and flood control projects will be made by Col. Malcolm Elliott division engineer of the Upper Mississippi Valley division, St. Louis, aboard the U.S. Penniman starting Monday from Minneapolis to Cairo, Ill.

        The steamer arrived in St. Paul Friday and will head down stream at 10 a.m. Monday from Minneapolis. The governors of five states, mayors, city officials and representatives of local interests in river transportation have been invited to ride during the daytime hours over various sections of the river.

        Among the 20 guests boarding the steamer in this port at 2 p.m. Monday will be Mayor McDonough; Milton Rosen, commissioner of public works; Herman Mueller, secretary and general manager of the St. Paul Port Authority; John France, industrial director of the St. Paul Association of Commerce; Dr. Lloyd L. Smith Jr., supervisor of the state fisheries research bureau; Fred Haeberlin, editor of the Pioneer Press and Dispatch; and Sam Robertson, captain of Division No. 1, U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary. The group will cruise as far as Hastings.

        Members of the Upper Mississippi Valley Water Use council will make the entire trip. Other guests will be senators and congressmen whose districts are within this area and Col. Elliott’s staff, comprising Col. Maybin H. Wilson, deputy division engineer; Col. Lawrence B. Feagin, district engineer, St. Louis; Col. Lynn C. Barnes, district engineer, St. Paul; and Lt. Col. John H. Peil, district engineer, Rock Island.

        Informal meetings for the discussion of local projects will be conducted enroute.

        Stops will be made at Hastings, Red Wing, Lake City, Winona, La Crosse, Prairie du Chien, Guttenberg, Dubuque, Lock No. 14, Lock No. 15, Muscatine, Burlington, Fort Madison, Keokuk, Lock 20, Quincy, Hannibal, Louisiana, Clarksville, Lock 25, Alton, St. Louis, Chester, Ill.; Cape Girardeau, Mo., and Cairo, Ill.

        The Penniman is 148 feet long and has a beam of 30-feet. It is powered by compound steam engines and is a sternwheeler.
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