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Date Posted:12/08/2008 4:01 AMCopy HTML


Lure Of River Life Is Magnet To 4 Brothers
They Are All Famous Skippers In Valley Of Mississippi 
St. Louis, August 26-Poets sing of the traditions and romance of the sea but, take it from the four Streckfus brothers who operate steamboats up and down the
Mississippi valley, the lure of the river can be just as strong. The Streckfus brothers, Capt. John, Capt. Joe, Capt. Roy, and Capt. Verne, have been on the river all of
their lives.  For years they, and their father before them, have kept their boats plying the great waterway while other passenger traffic has almost vanished.
The brothers are known familiarly at every landing place on the Mississippi and Ohio and, true to the traditional easy familiarity of the river, are always called by their
first names by crew members.  Being of retiring dispositions, however, they are not so well known ashore. "The fascination the river has for us speaks for itself," Capt. Roy said.  "When a boy my father stowed away on a boat that passed his home in Rock Island, Ill.  He bought his first packet, The Freddie, shortly after he was married
in 1878.  He followed the river 47 years before he died in 1925."
Owned Packet Fleet
"He owned a number of packet boats which he operated on the upper Mississippi.  Later he tried to operate four large packet boats up and down the river from New
Orleans to St. Paul and on the Ohio to Pittsburgh." "When he realized that speed in transportation of freight and passenger was the order of the day," Capt. Roy said,
"he knew the packet business was dead.  He ripped out the staterooms of his boats and converted them all into excursion boats.  He had the first such craft on the inland
waters.  Now we operate excursion boats exclusively." "We four brothers grew up on the river," he said, "and I don't think any of us ever had the slightest temptation to
leave it.  My son, J. Curran, has passed his examinations leading to a captain's certificate and he'll undoubtedly stick with the river." The brothers at present operate four large craft.  This summer, the Capitol, captained by Roy, runs excursions out of St. Paul, Minn.  Capt. Verne's boat, The President, operates between Louisiana, Mo., and Red Wing, Minn., The Senator is on the Ohio at Pittsburgh.
Admiral No. 1 Boat
Capt. John has command of the new streamlined, air conditioned Admiral, the largest and most modern craft on the river, which operates out of St. Louis.  The ship
is 385 feet long.  It has five decks, three of them enclosed in steel and glass and two of them air conditioned.  It was more than three years in the building.
"Maybe the family atmosphere about the boats has had something to do with keeping us going while other firms have failed." Capt. Roy said, "My father developed a clean atmosphere on his boats, lacking in some of the earlier packets when gambling was rampant, by always having some member of his family aboard."
"It's been our policy," he explained, "to put the money we make back into the business and make it grow.  That's our sole idea in acquiring the Admiral.  Keeping the river life alive, providing jobs for people seems to be appreciated."

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The above story was taken from the
Streckfus Steamers magazine-dated

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Re:The Streckfus Brothers

Date Posted:08/22/2009 4:27 PMCopy HTML

I worked on the Admiral the summers of 1958 and 1959.  One of the people most dedicated tokeeping the Admiral ia top notch entertainment center was Shirley Streckfus.I would be interested in speaking with others who worked on the ship.  I am writing a mystery connected to a fictional body hung up on the understructure of the gangplanks.
Judy Phillipson

[email protected]
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Re:The Streckfus Brothers

Date Posted:09/12/2009 1:04 AMCopy HTML

Good luck on your mystery Judy! I hope that you enjoyed viewing and reading subjects on the site. Please come back and visit us anytime and do join us as a member if you wish to do so. Thanks!
Suzanne a.k.a. Fiddlinsue

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