From the birth of steam to the 1920's the Navesink Communities were connected with New York City by steamboats. Most of those vessels were shallow draft coastal sidewheelers. Some of these vessels such as the Seabird and the Albertina were much beloved fixtures on the river.
These vessels were not just a physical transportation link with New York City and the rest of the greater Hudson River and Raritan Bay estuary, but an emotional connection with neighbor communities. Unfortunately all of the Navesink Steamers have long ago been scrapped.
The creation of a replica paddlewheeler could provide a community focal point that would provide myriad educational and recreational opportunities for the Navesink communities. In order to provide some initial suggestions with regard to a replica paddlewheeler, board member Rik van Hemmen asked Caitlin Bogden, a Monmouth County High Tech High School student, to design a replica paddle wheeler as her senior project, and some of her design is shown on this page.
The design is meant to convey the feel and looks of the traditional Navesink Paddlewheeler, but will be US Coast Guard certified and will be powered by a low noise diesel engine. If built the vessel could serve as a moving classroom, ambassador and NMHA activity center.
Here is an article (pdf) about another recently built steamboat, the Steamboat Princess. scan3222_000.pdf
For further information contact: Rik van Hemmen.