Ste. Claire - Bob-Lo Excursion Company Ste. Claire - Bob-Lo Company - A Browning Line

Ste. Claire - Bob-Lo Excursion Company, photo used for card

Ste. Claire - Last boat to leave Bob-Lo 1991, Capt. Bill Hoey Photo

The steamer Ste. Claire represents the typical propeller-driven excursion steamer of the turn of the century, a type once found in many parts of the country. Excursion steamers are steamships built primarily for passengers for day trips. Ste. Claire and her running mate Columbia represent the "ocean-going" type of excursion vessel although they were used on lakes.
The steamer Columbia and Ste. Claire are the last two remaining classic excursion steamers in the country; and the last essentially unaltered passenger ships designed by Frank E. Kirby; and for their essentially unaltered propulsion machinery of a type becoming increasingly rare ; as the two last vessels of the Detroit and Windsor Ferry Co.; as two of the few surviving vessels built by the Detroit Dry Dock Company, and for their unaltered propulsion machinery, which is of a rare type. Columbia is the oldest passenger steamer in the United States, excepting vessels properly classed as ferries. Columbia and her running-mate Ste. Claire are the last two steamers of their type with integrity left in the United States. The pair shared their original run from Detroit to Bob-Lo Island.  Images are from William Worden / William Hoey, Peter Worden / National Registry of Historic Places, and the Burton Historical Collection, Detroit Public Library.


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