The steamboat Rosalie
operated from 1893 to 1918 as part of the Puget Sound Mosquito Fleet
, also operating out of Victoria, B.C. In 1898, Rosalie
went north with many other Puget Sound steamboats to join the Klondike Gold Rush
was built at Alameda, California
in 1893 originally for the Alameda ferry service. She was long, on the beam, with depth of hold. She was powered by a compound steam engine
Opposing the Southern Pacific Railroad
Oakland merchant John L. Davie utilized the Rosalie
in 1894 to demonstrate that monopolistic and corrupt practices by the Southern Pacific Railroad
's Big Four
could be resisted. She was utilized as a ferryboat competing against the established monopoly service across San Francisco Bay, but at first was blockaded by Southern Pacific ships. In one incident, as the Southern Pacific's Alameda
entered its namesake estuary and ignored her whistle, the Rosalie
crashed into the rear end of the Alameda
. The railroad relented and the Rosalie
continued freely competing with the Southern Pacific ferries.
Puget Sound service
Rosalie was brought north from California to run from Puget Sound
. After two Alaska voyages, Rosalie
was purchased by Capt. D.B Jackson, then doing business as the Northwestern Steamship Company, to serve on Puget Sound with the older sidewheelers George E. Starr
. She was placed on the Tacoma
route, under Capt. C.W. Ames as master and Capt. William Williamson as pilot. When news of the Klondike gold strike hit Seattle, Rosalie
was pulled from service (this on July 25, 1897) for some reconstruction to prepare her to go north again with the gold seekers. Capt, George Roberts replaced Captain Ames, and George Lent, a partner in the Alaska Steamship Company, took over as engineer. Charles E. Peabody assumed the all-important financial position of purser.
Return to Alaska
By 1898, Rosalie
was controlled by the Washington & Alaska Steamship Company in which among others Charles E. Peabody (Rosalie
's purser) was interested. The company ran six sailings a month from Seattle, to Mary Island, Metlakatla
, Haines Mission
with the Rosalie
among other vessels.
Return to Puget Sound as boom fades
ran in on the Alaska route from 1897 to 1900. By 1900, the extreme boom for transport to the Klondike golf fields had faded, and Rosalie
was returned to Puget Sound, this time as the first vessel in the ownership of Joshua Green, who had set up business as the Puget Sound Navigation Co.
. Green had secured six mail route contracts on Puget Sound and was looking to buy other vessels in addition to Rosalie
to serve the contracts. Green set Rosalie
running between Puget Sound and British Columbia points. In 1903, Captain Roberts was appointed master of the new inland steamship Clallam
which soon thereafter sank in terrible circumstances in the Strait of Juan de Fuca
. On January 11, 1907, Rosalie
assisted at the wreck of the Alice Gertrude
which in a fog had run around on Clallam Reef. In 1908, Rosalie
managed to ram the then new steam ferry West Seattle.
Also in 1908, the Puget Sound Navigation company, which had purchased the steel steamer Chippewa
found her expensive to operate, and so Rosalie
replaced her on the Victoria run in the off-season. Rosalie
was standing by at Colman dock on May 19, 1912, when Flyer
had extended her gangplank improperly, causing it to collapse and throw people that had been on it into the water. The crew of Rosalie
lowered a boat to assist the fireboat Snoqualmie
and the launch Skeeter
in rescuing the people; sadly despite these efforts, two passengers were drowned.
Out of service and destruction by fire
By 1918, Rosalie
had been taken out of service and laid up in the West Waterway in Seattle. On June 22, 1918 she was destroyed by fire. Fortunately, no one was hurt.
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