History of the Steamboat

In 1769, a man by the name of James Watt invented and improved a steam engine. The steamboat era began 1787 when another man named John Fitch built the first successful 45 foot steamboat on the Delaware River. He later made a larger one that carried passenger to and from Philadelphia, PA and Burlington, NJ. Robert Fulton, the man who invented the submarine, was credited with making the Steamboat a success.

Advantages and Disadvantages

Advantages: Before the steamboat era, men only had wind and animals to transport cargo. It accomplished things at a faster and more time-efficient way.

Disadvantages: They used a large amount of coal and often blew up because of unsafe designs.

The steamboat was the airplane of this era.

How it Relates to North Dakota

The steamboat relates to North Dakota because we have the Missouri River and people could transport goods to and from here. In late 1870, a man by the name of Alexander Griggs rode a steamboat through the Red River in the North to Grand Forks, the first major steamboat settlement. The steamboat froze and the men were forced to wait here until winter was over. Griggs then decided that the area would make a great town, and eventually the land become known as downtown Grand Forks.