The Georgie Burton's career is bracketed by tragedy. She was launched in 1906, on the same day as the San Francisco earthquake. She survived to be one of the last steam powered sternwheelers on the Columbia, retiring in 1947. She was moored in the Dalles to become a museum, but the 1948 floods ripped her from her mooring and destroyed her. This Alva Day photo is from June 5, 1948. Though the Vanport flood was six days earlier, the river still looks awfully angry.
I don't know exactly where this boat sank, but if you look there is a good image of one of the fish wheels that were up and down the river. Looks a lot like "Big Eddy" fish wheel, but I think this would have to be downstream if this boat was docked at The Dalles, because "Big Eddy" was up closer to the old Seuferts cannery.
I suppose about the only way one could figure it out, would be go to The Dalles and scope out the hills across the river. From that one could get a fairly good idea as to where this was.
Wouldn't it have been wonderful to have had a museum on a boat such as this?
charlott on 27th May 2014 @ 7:09am
The ship was being stored in the Celilo Canal when it was destroyed. You can still see part of the canal from I-84.
Arthur on 27th May 2014 @ 7:29am
Wow! That's a rip snorter.
Poor Georgie Burton. Not the best way to end your career.
I don't know much about the Celilo Canal, but from pictures I have seen, I think it was quite a feat of engineering and much longer than Cascade Locks.
I'm assuming Alva Day must also have photo of Celilo Falls during this flood? I wonder how the salmon fishing fared in 1948.
l.e. on 27th May 2014 @ 7:45am
Definitely the canal was much, much longer than that little one at Cascade Locks. It really wasn't all that wide, as canals are now, as there weren't the big, big barges like Tidewater in that era. It went basically from The Dalles up through big Eddy and ended up above Celilo Falls there close to where the boat launch is in the park.
Yes, if you know where to look you can see portions of the canal. A lot of the freeway up there closer to Celilo is actually built right on what was the canal.
In order to get to the river, below the "dead line" you had to cross the canal. I just can't remember whether that canal was deep enough so that boats could pass under that walk way, or if it had to be raised. I can vividly remember standing there and watching boats go through and think "boy that are certainly big boats." By todays standards naturally they were dingys.
You crossed the railroad tracks first, always watching for a train to come whizzing by, then across that canal. Then climb down what seemed like boulders to little kids to the river.
charlott on 27th May 2014 @ 8:01am
I think the picture was take just up stream from where The Dalles dam is today. I believe Horsethief Butte is behind and a bit to the right of the boat and 8 Mile Creek a bit further to the right still.
longshot on 27th May 2014 @ 10:18pm
I agree that that is probably Horsethief Butte across the river.
Charlott on 28th May 2014 @ 7:01am