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Clip #: TFA-86A
Library: TFA Network
Filmmaker: Burton Holmes
S.S. Christopher Columbus, Milwaukee, excursion boat, all day cruise, great lakes, Lake Michigan, Goodrich Steamship Lines, crowd lines up on dock to buy tickets, passengers board, boat pulls away from dock, Chicago river, lighthouse, captain and mate, man at ships telegraph, radio operator with headphones, telegram, family parties on deck, girls with 1920s hats, flappers, photographer, engine room, engineer, steam engine, pistons, generator, drinking fountain, lifeboats, ship in open water, soda fountain, bartenders, eating lunch on deck, cafeteria, Kestograph, indian artist shows drawing, dancers, dancing, Charleston, couples, dance floor, captain on bridge, tugboat, Milwaukee River, passengers disembark, gangway, bus takes them to Blatz Brewery, drinking beer, standing in line, back to dock, up gangway.
The SS Christopher Columbus was an American excursion liner on the Great Lakes, in service between 1893 and 1933. She was the only whaleback ship ever built for passenger service. The ship was designed by Alexander McDougall, the developer and promoter of the whaleback design. Columbus was built between 1892 and 1893 at Superior, Wisconsin, by the American Steel Barge Company. Initially, she ferried passengers to and from the World's Columbian Exposition. Later, she provided general transportation and excursion services to various ports around the lakes. At 362 feet, the ship was the longest whaleback ever built, and reportedly also the largest vessel on the Great Lakes when she was launched. Columbus is said to have carried more passengers during her career than any other vessel on the Great Lakes. After a career lasting four decades, she was retired during the Great Depression and scrapped in 1936 by the Manitowoc Shipbuilding Company at Manitowoc, Wisconsin.