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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Sacramento in Sacramento County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Independent Boat Operations of the 1850s

 
 
Independent Boat Operations of the 1850s Marker image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, February 24, 2009
1. Independent Boat Operations of the 1850s Marker
Inscription. The Sacramento Wood Company’s steamer wood freight shed, between N and O streets in the Front Street right-of-way, remained at this location for approximately 30 years. The Sacramento Wood Company could trace his roots from an earlier enterprise that gathered cut firewood from the banks of the upper Sacramento River.
In the photo above, the building at this time sports a banner reading “Opposition Str. Chin Du Wan.” The Chin Du Wan was a popular steamboat that operated from time to time on the Sacramento River. The phrase “Opposition Steamer,” visible on the banner sign, dates back to the 1850s in Sacramento after the consolidation of many of the independent steamer operators. First, the People’s Line was formed in 1851 and, in 1854, the California Steam Navigation Company. The “Opposition” was comprised of independent boat operators who attempted to capture some of the river-transport market with lower rates.
The California Steam Navigation Company was created to end cut-throat and uneconomical steamboat operations. Rate wars between independently owned and operated steamboats had financially ruined many boat owners by the constant undercutting of fares and shipping charges. In many instances prices were driven below the actual cost of providing the service.
In 1854, many steamboats
Independent Boat Operations of the 1850s Marker image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, February 24, 2009
2. Independent Boat Operations of the 1850s Marker
were taken out of service and the owners paid to mothball their vessels. Some steamers were dismantled or shipped to other river systems such as the Columbia or Puget Sound regions.
The steamer Chin Du Wan was famous as an Opposition boat. The boat’s steam calliope was used to attract customers to its remote landing and irregular schedule. Opposition boats remained a colorful 19th century phenomenon, which generally ended in the 1870s when the river lost its role as the sole means of travel between Sacramento and San Francisco.
 
Location. 38° 34.786′ N, 121° 30.445′ W. Marker is in Sacramento, California, in Sacramento County. Marker can be reached from Capital Mall. Click for map. Marker is located on the River Front Promenade off of Capital Mall and Front Streets, near the eastern approach to the Tower Bridge. Marker is in this post office area: Sacramento CA 95814, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The First Brick Building in Sacramento (here, next to this marker); The Docks (a few steps from this marker); The River Lines Fleet (within shouting distance of this marker); City Wharf and Warehouses (within shouting distance of this marker); View Near the M Street Bridge
Close-Up of Photo on Marker image. Click for more information.
By Syd Whittle, February 24, 2009
3. Close-Up of Photo on Marker
The Sacramento Wood Company steamer shed, between N and O streets on Front Street, circa 1876.
Note: For further information on this photo please see the following link:
Click for more information.
(within shouting distance of this marker); The Interurban Railroad Lines (within shouting distance of this marker); The Tower Bridge (within shouting distance of this marker); Tower Bridge: Gateway to the Capital (within shouting distance of this marker). Click for a list of all markers in Sacramento.
 
Categories. Industry & CommerceNotable EventsWaterways & Vessels
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. This page has been viewed 1,053 times since then and 79 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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