> Hotel Information
Wednesday Evening (25 May) Social Event and Talk
- Sold Out!
A social event has been arranged for the evening
of Wednesday, 25 May, that you can sign up for when you make your
Conference registration (for a small cover charge of $25 per
person to cover dinner, excluding drinks). We have reserved the
Brewing Company, a
5 minute drive from the Crowne Plaza, where
we shall meet at 6 PM for dinner (with a beer or two!).
Following dinner we shall have what promises to
be a stimulating talk from John Laurence Busch, an
independent historian and author who focuses on the interaction
between humanity and technology, specializing in the first
generation of steam-powered vessels. He has devoted years of
research to discovering the true story of Captain Moses
Rogers and the steamship Savannah.
He has written a book about the story called "Steam Coffin",
described by numerous book reviewers as the definitive account of
what truly is America's sea saga. John introduces his talk in
his own words...
Prevention Presentation: Building the First "Steamship"
"In 1807, a
brilliant, creative, and controversial American by the
name of Robert Fulton declared his intent to build an
experimental ďsteamboat,Ē which would be used to
initiate a continuous passenger service between New York
City and Albany, New York. With the success of
his North River Steam Boat, Fulton showed that it was
possible to use an artificial power to alter a personís
location and the amount of time it took to change it.
In so doing, he also broke through the enormous
psychological barrier that had existed in peopleís
minds; it was, in fact, possible to overcome Nature to
took time for many people to accept Robert Fultonís
triumph as the truth. One man who did not need to
be convinced was a sloop captain named Moses Rogers. He
had witnessed the first successful runs of the North
River Steam Boat to Albany, and the experience gave him
the fever--steamboat fever.
became one of the first steamboat captains in history,
taking command of one of Fultonís first rivals,
the Phoenix. In his new profession, Moses learned not
only the technicalities of this revolutionary invention,
but the peculiarities of a traveling public just getting
used to this new mode of transport.
In the years
immediately following Fulton's success, running these
steamboats on rivers, lakes and bays became a normal and
accepted part of American life. But taking such a
vessel on a voyage across the ocean was a different
proposition altogether. Experienced mariners didnít
think it could be done. These early steamboats, they
declared, were just too flimsy and unwieldy to withstand
the dangers of the deep. But Moses believed otherwise.
Combining his knowledge of the old mode of transport
(sail) with the new mode of transport (steam), he set
out to design a vessel that was capable of overcoming
the many dangers of the sea. This craft would be not a
steamboat, but a "steamship," the first of its kind.
She was named Savannah.
Machinery Failure Prevention Presentation will show how
Captain Rogers designed and built this revolutionary
vessel with the intent of minimizing the risk of
machinery failure at sea...nearly two centuries ago!"
Further details about the topic
of the talk may be found on John's website 'Steam
So, come and join us
for dinner on Wednesday evening for a convivial evening
that will include a fascinating talk!