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A History of the Growth of the Steam-Engine

And Fulton designed a steam vessel of war


success of the Clermont on the trial-trip was such that Fulton soon after advertised the vessel as a regular passenger-boat between New York and Albany.[80]

[80] A newspaper-slip in the scrap-book of the author has the following:

"The traveler of today, as he goes on board the great steamboats St. John or Drew, can scarcely imagine the difference between such floating palaces and the wee-bit punts on which our fathers were wafted 60 years ago. We may, however, get some idea of the sort of thing then in use by a perusal of the steamboat announcements of that time, two of which are as follows:

["_Copy of an Advertisement taken from the Albany Gazette, dated September, 1807._]

"The North River Steamboat will leave Pauler's Hook Ferry [now Jersey City] on Friday, the 4th of September, at 9 in the morning, and arrive at Albany on Saturday, at 9 in the afternoon. Provisions, good berths, and accommodations are provided.

"The charge to each passenger is as follows:

"To Newburg dols. 3, time 14 hours. " Poughkeepsie " 4, " 17 " " Esopus " 5, " 20 " " Hudson " 5-1/2, " 30 " " Albany " 7, " 36 "

"For places, apply to William

Vandervoort, No. 48 Courtlandt Street, on the corner of Greenwich Street.

"_September 2, 1807._

["_Extract from the New York Evening Post, dated October 2, 1807._]

"Mr. Fulton's new-invented _Steamboat_, which is fitted up in a neat style for passengers, and is intended to run from New York to Albany as a Packet, left here this morning with 90 passengers, against a strong head-wind. Notwithstanding which, it was judged she moved through the waters at the rate of six miles an hour."

During the next winter the Clermont was repaired and enlarged, and in the summer of 1808 was again on the route to Albany; and, meantime, two new steamboats--the Raritan and the Car of Neptune--had been built by Fulton. In the year 1811 he built the Paragon. Both of the two vessels last named were of nearly double the size of the Clermont. A steam ferry-boat was built to ply between New York and Jersey City in 1812, and the next year two others, to connect the metropolis with Brooklyn. These were "twin-boats," the two parallel hulls being connected by a "bridge" or deck common to both. The Jersey ferry was crossed in fifteen minutes, the distance being a mile and a half. To-day, the time occupied at the same ferry is about ten minutes. Fulton's ferry-boat carried, at one load, 8 carriages, and about 30 horses, and still had room for 300 or 400 foot-passengers. Fulton also designed steam-vessels for use on the Western rivers, and, in 1815, some of his boats were started as "packets" on the line between New York and Providence, R. I.

Meantime, the War of 1812 was in progress, and Fulton designed a steam vessel-of-war, which was then considered a wonderfully formidable craft. His plans were submitted to a commission of experienced naval officers, among whom were Commodores Decatur and Perry, Captain John Paul Jones, Captain Evans, and others whose names are still familiar, and were favorably commended. Fulton proposed to build a steam-vessel capable of carrying a heavy battery, and of steaming four miles an hour. The ship was to be fitted with furnaces for red-hot shot. Some of her guns were to be discharged below the water-line. The estimated cost was $320,000.

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