Skip to main content Smithsonian Institution

Catalog Data

Physical Description:
wood (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 14 in x 52 in x 16 1/2 in; 35.56 cm x 132.08 cm x 41.91 cm
Object Name:
ship
ship model
model, ship
Place Made:
United States
Built in:
United States: Indiana, Jefferson
Worked along:
United States: Mississippi River
United States: Missouri River
Date made:
1880
1962
Used:
late 19th century
Description:
This model represents the U.S. Lighthouse Tender <I>Joseph Henry</I>, a side-wheeled steamer built by Howard & Company in Jeffersonville, Indiana, in 1880. This 180-foot-long vessel was built for service along the nation’s inland waterways. Lighthouse tenders served both coastal and inland areas by delivering supplies, fuel, news, and relief and maintenance crew to lighthouses and lightships. They also maintained aids to navigation, including markers identifying channels, shoals, and obstructions. Based out of Memphis, the <I>Joseph Henry</I> worked along the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers until 1904.
The vessel’s namesake, Joseph Henry, was America’s foremost scientist in the 19th century. His expertise was in the field of electromagnetism. Henry was a professor at the College of New Jersey (Princeton) when he was named the first Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, a position he held from 1846 until his death in 1878. He also served on the U.S. Lighthouse Board (1852-78), and implemented various improvements in lighting and signaling during his tenure. This lighthouse tender was named in his honor at its launching two years after his death.
Subject:
Steamships  Search this
Related event:
The Development of the Industrial United States  Search this
The Emergence of Modern America  Search this
Related Publication:
On the Water online exhibition
Related Web Publication:
http://americanhistory.si.edu/onthewater
ID Number:
TR.321486
Catalog number:
321486
Accession number:
245714
See more items in:
Work and Industry: Maritime
Work
Science & Mathematics
On the Water exhibit
Transportation
Exhibition:
On the Water
Exhibition Location:
National Museum of American History
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a6-9667-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_844257