1st Paddleship steamer crosses Atlantic
Although the Savannah, built in New York State in 1818, managed to cross the Atlantic from America to England in 1819, the ship relied almost entirely on sail power, though she did steam out of Savannah, and occasionally boosted her speed a little with her paddles on the crossing, much to the surprise of sail ships observing the steam emitted and thinking she was ablaze.
Savannah, captained by Moses Rogers, reached Kinsale in Ireland where she took more coal on, then proceeded to Liverpool. The entire voyage to Liverpool took twenty seven and a half days, of which just three and a half were under steam.
The point of the voyage was to sell the ship, with an over-supply of trading vessels in her home country making it necessary to do so, but after nearly a month in Liverpool no buyer had been found, and she carried on to Russia, with similar lack of success. Eventually she returned to the USA where her paddles and power equipment were removed, but even then her indignities were not finished. In November 1821 she was wrecked during a gale back near her place of manufacture in New York State.
More famous dates here
5839 views since 20th June 2008
On this day: