By: Evelyn Strand

The History:

Before cars, trains, trucks, and airplanes they used steamboats to travel across the rivers and carried people and supply's to other places. The steamboats were always slow when going across the rivers because the speed was depended on the river currents and manpower. They introduced the steam-powered boats in the late 1700's and the 1800's it can travel up to five miles per hour. The steamboats can be dangerous because they can explode, sink, have Indian attacks, and daring steamboats races captured the imagination of the country.


  • Had faster travels
  • Had passengers
  • Carried food supplies
  • People to get jobs
  • saw new people


  • Weren't regulated
  • Can kill lots of people
  • Lot of money for tools
  • Unsafe operations
  • Boiler explosions due to unsafe designs
  • Lots of coal to make the steamboat to move

The Inventors:

The inventors that made the first steamboat were Robert Fulton he got well-deserved credit by building an economically useful to combined with steam engine and hull design, but he was also certainly not the first person to build a steamboat, nor the first American to do so. The Englishman Jonathan Hull patented a steamboat in 1737, and Americans James Rumsey, John Stevens, and James Fitch also all ran working on steamboats on American rivers before Fulton launched the steamboat in 1807.

How did it impact North Dakota:

Steamboats impacted North Dakota by the importance of the trade route that had on the development of the region. Steamboats also impacted ND because they bring people and business to us. Also because steamboats can cross the rivers people won't have to cross wagons across the rivers to ND.

Important to Settling the West:

Steamboats are important to settling the West because they carry plows and seeds to new farmers. They also have a functional improvements over the years, the steamboats established an indispensable method of the trade for all seasons.