Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Steamers Passing Coney Island

This feels to me the tiniest bit like going to the airport just to see the planes take off. (Rather harder to do after 9/11, but even if I'm not flying anywhere myself, I do find travel hubs exciting.)

FOR CALIFORNIA.--Yesterday afternoon at 3 o'clock three splendid steamships, the Cherokee, the Georgia, and the Empire City, left this port for Havana and Chagres. Somewhere over 300 passengers (whose names will be found in this morning's Tribune were on board, and what with the good-byes, the cheers and farewells of shore-friends, the bustle of express agents and belated voyagers, and the novelty of three great steamships starting at the same time, the hour was one of extraordinary excitement.

The Empire City was the first one to start ; in about 10 minutes the Georgia pushed out, and as soon as she got abreast of the Cherokee that steamer unmoored and took to her wings.

We were among a party of four or five hundred who went down the bay on the Niagara to see the steamers and some friends off. The Niagara followed the Empire City, and when abreast of Coney Island passed and circumnavigated her, and ran back astern of the others (Georgia and Cherokee)…

As the Niagara passed Coney Island the receding steamers were lost sight of, though the long dark trails of smoke from each were still visible and served to mark their location. But these were soon washed down by the rain, and the gazers burned their eyes Cityward, well pleased with their trip to sea.

--New York Daily Tribune, Wednesday, August 14, 1850/

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