Chautauqua County Historical Society - Member Activities - Chautauqua County - New York - USA
Chautauqua County, New York, USA
"CHAUTAUQUA" AT MAYVILLE
CHAUTAUQUA LAKE - NEW YORK - 1870
1864 PASS FOR THE STEAMER "CHAUTAUQUA"
CHAUTAUQUA LAKE - NEW YORK - COMMANDER WM. M. WHALLON
Built in Mayville, NY and launched April 11, 1863. She was 120 feet long with a 17 foot beam. Two 16 foot high side wheels with 4 to 5 foot buckets propelled her. Regular trips began May 17, 1863 under the command of Captain J. Otto Green. Over her life she had several changes mostly to cabins and such. In 1871 she was thoroughly overhauled with one of the changes being the installation of a new boiler. On August 14, 1871 the worst Chautauqua Lake steamboat disaster took place. The CHAUTAUQUA's new boiler exploded while docked at Whitney's Bay just below Prendergast point. Eight people were killed and twelve seriously injured. Of the injured, several subsequently died in later years due to their injuries.
Sometime in the 1930's the Chautauqua Lake water level was at a record low. A young C. Malcom Nichols (someday to be a director of the Fenton Historical Society) gathered a few mahogany boards from the exposed remains of the CHAUTAUQUA. He subsequently had a small book end table fashioned from the wood that I was fortunate to acquire.