Decorative elements on steamship engines and boilers

Catherine Glackmeyer
Joined: 3 years ago
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Topic starter  

I am a graduate student at Texas A&M university currently researching the purely decorative elements added to American steamship engines and boilers; i.e. the rooster perching on the walking-beam engine of Ticonderoga, a decorative head on the Arabia boiler, and decorative marks on the boilers of Heroine (1832-1838). Any pictures from exhibitions or information y'all may have/ might find would be very much appreciated!

Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 1089

Unfortunately, I don't have a photo of, but on top of the Str. TOM GREENE's Frisbee manufactured engines' valve stands there were decorative chrome plated eagles. Virginia Bennett, who is now deceased had two of them in her collection, and I have no idea what happened to them.

In the engineroom of the Str. BELLE OF LOUISVILLE there are two decorative cast brass cylinder head covers with her builder's name and city on them. Both are held in place by decorative cast and machined iron acorns in the plates' centers. Also in the BELLE's engineroom there use to be a cold water doctor pump that sported the boat's name in gaily lettered script. Unfortunately, the pump was removed several years ago and sits in the yard of the Howard National Steamboat Museum in Jeffersonville, Indiana.

Old color photos of the second Str. JULIA BELLE SWAIN's engines will show her colorfully painted Gillette & Eaton steam engines.