“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Bardstown in Nelson County, Kentucky — The American South (East South Central)

John Fitch Memorial

John Fitch Memorial image. Click for full size.
By Karl Stelly, June 2, 2014
1. John Fitch Memorial
After a fresco in the Capitol at Washington which depicts John Fitch at work on the model of his first steamboat to effect a successful voyage

Beneath this monument are interred the mortal remains of John Fitch, Soldier and Inventor, Born at South Windsor, Connecticut, January 21, 1743: Died at Bardstown, Kentucky, July 2, 1798.

At the outbreak of the American Revolution appointed a Lieutenant of a New Jersey company of the First Regiment, and later employed as Armorer for the troops by the Committee of Safety for the Province of New Jersey. In the fall of 1785 he presented drawings of his proposed steamboat to the American Philosophical Society and endeavored to finance experiments by selling maps of his explorations and by petitioning the assemblies of Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania for assistance. On the Delaware River, August 22, 1787, John Fitch launched and successfully operated a steamboat before a distinguished gathering which included the framers of the American Constitution then in session during the years 1786 - 7. Laws granting Fitch exclusive rights to navigate by steam were enacted by several states.

John Fitch Memorial image. Click for full size.
By Karl Stelly, June 2, 2014
2. John Fitch Memorial
On July 26, 1788, he launched another steamboat using a stern paddle wheel and on April 16, 1790, his steamboat established and maintained scheduled sailings on the Delaware. Congress granted John Fitch a patent August 26, 1791 signed by President George Washington. King Louis of France likewise granted the American inventor a patent on November 20th of the same year. In 1796 Fitch constructed still another steamboat using a form of screw propeller. He reaped neither profit nor glory from his inventions, which contributed toward the revolution of navigation.

) Erected A.D. 1927 in compliance with the Act of Congress Approved February 12, 1926.

Reproduction of a model made by John Fitch in 1786, now in the National Museum at Washington
Erected 1927.
Topics. This historical marker memorial is listed in these topic lists: Industry & CommerceScience & MedicineWaterways & Vessels.
Location. 37° 48.561′ N, 85° 27.987′ W. Marker is in Bardstown, Kentucky, in Nelson County. Marker is on U.S. 31E/150, on the right when traveling north. Memorial is on the Northeast quadrant of the town square (town circle), between East Stephen Foster Avenue and North Third Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Bardstown KY 40004, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance

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of this marker. County Named, 1784 (a few steps from this marker); Nelson County World War I, World War II, Korean War, & Vietnam War Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); Vietnam 1969 Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); Wilson & Muir Bank & Trust Co. (within shouting distance of this marker); Confederates Here (within shouting distance of this marker); McLean House (within shouting distance of this marker); Bardstown (within shouting distance of this marker); Benedict Joseph Flaget (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Bardstown.
Also see . . .  John Finch - Who Made America PBS. (Submitted on June 13, 2014, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on June 12, 2014, by Karl Stelly of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 387 times since then and 20 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on June 12, 2014, by Karl Stelly of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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Sep. 20, 2020