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This is a photo of a New Orleans steamboat that I shot in the spring of 95. The towboat crew and I were just coming out of the Industrial Locks in New Orleans when we were met with the sight of this grand boat. It's brightness on the river overpowered that of downtown New Orleans and the the Greater New Orleans bridge located right behind it. I remember hearing the sound of jazz and every few seconds the laughter of people off the reflection of the water. When a Mississippi steamboat cruises by, every riverman stops to gaze in awe of its magnificence. It's been like that for over a hundred years and still holds true today.


I've crossed paths with steamboats all up and down the Mississippi like the mighty American Queen shown behind me. As the steamboat passed with many of its passengers on deck, I put one work glove on and did a dance with a mop in hand to entertain them. They really enjoyed it. They were so far away that all I could see were the white smiles across their faces. Whenever a steamboat passed our tow, it was like a few minutes of paradise riding by. A reminder that made you forget about the hard work and being in the middle of nowhere. I would always have dreams of someday riding on one.



I finally got to ride onboard a steamboat, the Natchez, with some of my best friends on our trip to Mardi Gras 98. To top it off - it was my birthday! We took a cool two hour cruise up and down the river with jazz music, a Cajun buffet, and plenty of drinks for everyone. It felt wonderful to be on the other side looking at towboats as we cruised through the harbor of New Orleans.

I must say, that was the best birthday that I ever had.