The Gordon C. Greene steamboat docked in 1947. Photo from the Chattanooga Free Press archives and provided by

This photo from the archives of the Chattanooga Free Press housed at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga shows the steamboat Gordon C. Greene docked here in 1947.

The archive is part of a digitized photo collection curated by historian Sam Hall on the website

According to historical sources, the Gordon C. Greene made cruises from St. Louis to Chattanooga and back, among other destination points, in the 1940s. Typically, the steamboat carried about 120 passengers and fares ran up to $250 per trip. says of the Gordon C. Greene: "She was the last packet boat built at the Howard Yard (in Jeffersonville, Indiana) and she was decorated in the old style with a lot of jig-saw drapery, feathered stacks, and a lofty dome on the pilothouse."

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Launched by history enthusiast Sam Hall in 2014, is designed to preserve historical images in the highest resolution available. If you have photo old negatives, glass plate negatives, or original nondigital prints taken in the Chattanooga area, contact Sam Hall at for information on how they may qualify to be digitized and preserved at no charge.


Historical sources indicate the riverboat was originally called the Cape Girardeau, but the name was changed to the Gordon C. Greene after it was sold by the Eagle Packet Co. to the Green Line for $50,000 in 1935. Gordon C. Greene was the name of the founder of the Green Line.

The steamboat reportedly ceased river travel in 1951 after several mechanical breakdowns, but lived on as a tourist attraction under different names in Ohio, Kentucky, Missouri and Florida before it sank on its moorings in St. Louis in 1967.

It is said to have appeared in the 1939 film "Gone With the Wind."

The Green Line was also one of the historical owners of the Delta Queen, a riverboat that was docked here in Chattanooga for many years until it was towed away in 2015.

Please see the Remember when, Chattanooga? Facebook page for more photographic memories of the Chattanooga area. Photos featured in this series are also available for closer inspection at

Contact Mark Kennedy at or 423-757-6645.