Monday, November 16, 2009

Favorite towboats, part 4: the J.S. Lewis

I haven't seen this boat working on the river for a while, but it makes an appearance every year at the local National Maritime Days celebrations. The J.S. Lewis started life in 1931 as a coal burner. On the first deck, there's a framed newspaper clipping of the boat receiving a ticket from the city of Cincinnati for violating air pollution regulations because of the amount of smoke it created by burning coal.

The J.S. Lewis is one of the oldest boats on the river. I don't get to see it often, but it's always a pleasure when I do.

Top: The J.S. Lewis entering the old Gallipolis locks a way long time ago.
Here, the J.S. Lewis leaves the old Gallipolis locks.

A boat that entered service in 1931 isn't likely to have a lot of high tech on it. Here are a control panel in the engine room and some of the controls in the pilothouse.


Anonymous said...

The old boat was working the week of 10/6. She towed the sternwheeler W.P.Snider Jr. from Marietta down to Parkersburg in preparation for transfer to Louisville for the 100th Birthday Celebration for the Idlewilde/Avalon/Belle of Louisville. A good article including some pictures of the wheelhouse can be found in The Waterways Journal Weekly, vol. 128 no. 29 October 13, 2014.

Unknown said...

Fond memories of the J.S. Lewis from 1958 to 1977 when my family lived in a house on the Kanawha River in WV. We always knew when the JSW was coming, especially was coming upstream, as the double-hung window panes in the living room would rattle like crazy long before the lead barges came in to view. Loved the experience of living on the river and the JSW was an integral part of it.