Mississippi River Paddlewheel Steamer Copper Tray

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  • Item Category: Fine Art
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Sep 18, 2007
  • Channel: Auction House
This is a silvered copper cordial serving tray from the early 1900's or late 1800's. Good condition with some of original silvering. Heavy copper with folded edge and scroll edge. Small measuring 7 1/4 inches by 5 1/2 inches. We bought several different heavy copper trays from salvage that were removed from a Mississippi River Paddlewheel Steamer. Used to serve cordials to guests and gamblers.

As William Henry and John Fitch had foreseen, steamboats on the major American rivers soon followed Fulton's success. Mark Twain, in his Life on the Mississippi, described much of the operation of these vessels. For most of the 19th century and part of the early 20th century, trade on the Mississippi River would be dominated by paddle-wheel steamboats, very few of which survive to the present day, most destroyed by boiler explosions or fires. One of the few surviving Mississippi sternwheelers from this period, Julius C. Wilkie, is preserved as a museum ship at Winona, Minnesota. For modern craft operated on rivers, see the riverboat article. The cartoon Steamboat Willie introduced steamboat pilot Mickey Mouse to the public. The Belle of Louisville, based at the port of Louisville, Kentucky is the oldest continually operating steamboat on the inland waterways of the United States: her hull was laid as the Idlewild in 1914.

A steamboat
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