Lunch With Books: “The River” by John Bowman

April 2 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Ohio County Public Library

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Lunch With Books: “The River” by John Bowman

April 2 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm


Historian, author, West Virginia History Hero and boat expert John Bowman will present a program on the importance of the Ohio River to Wheeling’s development.

Boat building in Wheeling began in 1774 when George Morgan of Baynton, Wharton, Morgan & Co. of Pittsburgh came to Wheeling to build boats for the army at the beginning of Lord Dunmore’s War.  That year the militia came from Fort Pitt to Wheeling to complete the building of Fort Fincastle, renamed Fort Henry. Wheeling’s boat yards were the first on the Ohio River, and the third boat yards established on the “Western Rivers” that flow into the Gulf of Mexico.

Wheeling built barges, bateaux (flat bottomed rowboats), flatboats, and pirogues, a canoe type boat. Two pirogues were built in Wheeling for Meriwether Lewis in 1803 that he used on the Lewis and Clark Expedition, “Corps of Discovery.” Keelboats, large boats rowed or polled down or upstream, were also built here. 

The first successful steamboat, the Washington, was built in Wheeling in 1815; 225 steamboats would follow, the last being the City of Wheeling in 1900. 


April 2
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Event Category:


Ohio County Public Library
52 Sixteenth Street
Wheeling, WV 26003 United States
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