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December 1998


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Douglas J Morgan <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
A LISTSERV list for discussions pertaining to New York State history." <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 26 Nov 1998 08:21:19 -0500
text/plain (43 lines)
Hi Walter,
Would you please send me the ULR address of the website for the packet boats.  The
listing in your message comes back with a "Site not found" message.  Thank you.
Doug Morgan
Honoeye Falls, NY

Walter Lewis wrote:

> [log in to unmask] wrote:
> >
> >  My immigrant ancestors landed in New York in 1847.  How would they have
> > traveled to Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  One source I have seen suggested they would
> > have taken a packet boat to Albany.  If this is true, I would like to find out
> > more about these boats--how long it took, what they were like, how much it
> > cost. How would they have gotten from Albany to Buffalo?  Any help will be
> > apprecited.
> The _Rip Van Winkle_ is an average example of the classic New
> York-Albany steam packets of the mid-1840s.  There are sketches of her
> on pages 78 and 79 of Stanton's _American Steam Vessels_ (reproduced for
> the WWW at http://www.hhpl.on.ca/scripts/Bib.asp?PubID=3)
> If fairly poor, in 1847 they might have taken a canal boat from Albany
> to Buffalo, but the tide had turned towards the railroads.  By 1847
> there were expresses from one end to the other of the patchwork of
> railroads that would become the New York Central.  At Buffalo at least
> one, and frequently more, steamboats left on the arrival of the
> coaches.  The _Empire_, illustrated on pages 74 & 75 of Stanton, is a
> representative of the best of the mid-1840s Great Lakes steamers (and
> very similar in profile to the Hudson River steam packets). While your
> ancestors could stay in Buffalo, many chose to sleep overnight on the
> lake boats (wake up around Cleveland). In 1847 the Michigan Central
> Railroad was open, so travelers to Lake Michigan had the choice of going
> around by the Straits of Mackinac or crossing Michigan by rail and going
> on to Chicago or Milwaukee by steamboat.  The year before, odds were an
> immigrant would take the all water route from Buffalo; three years later
> there were relatively few through passenger vessels and people proceeded
> by a variety of routes. Ten years later and the passage was typically
> all rail.
> Walter Lewis
> [log in to unmask]