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Paddlewheelers of Past Yukon Days"

Updated on June 7, 2012
© Quill Collection
© Quill Collection | Source

Welcome One and All

I must be going for some sort of record here as this is the third hub today.

Gather around I would like to share something with you of what I know of these Northern Pioneers that once plied the Yukon River and opened so many regions and people to the Gold Fields of the Yukon during the Great Gold Rush era in the late 1800's.

I had the privilege of having the security contract to guard the last to travel the Yukon River in 1955. The S.S. Klondike was her name and she stands today in dry dock and restored to original beauty.


The SS Klondike

Today she sits on dry dock nest to the river that she worked on for many years. She in her time was the Lady of the North and carried all persons who had the fair. Stately accommodations, full meal service and luxury of the day were many.

I had the privilege of walking every inch of her during the several year restoration project. I spent countless hours in her wheelhouse watching the river pass. I have attached a video for you telling you her historic life.

Please enjoy as it is a story I can not do justice of.

Excellent Video

© Quill Collection
© Quill Collection

Great Loss

Above is the picture of the SS Casca and the SS Whitehorse as they ended their time on the banks of the river.

It was a sad day and many stood with tear filled eyes as they burnt that day. There were all sorts of speculations as to what happened. It was concluded the fire was caused by soe squatters who had decided to make one of them their home.

The SS Klondike had sat right next to these two and we were lucky it had been moved up river to its permanent resting place a few years before. Today all that is left are the memories of the day this picture was taken. After several years of being out of the water they were tinder dry and went quickly.

© Quill Collection
© Quill Collection

Final Journey

It was a sight to see something this large slowly being pulled along the streets of Whitehorse with the D-8 Caterpillars on well greased skids. It filled the street with only a few feet to spare on either side.

I recall the day as many gathered to watch what had been said would be near impossible. It was an impressive sight to watch her be on the move again. Her final resting place close to a mile up river where she sits today.

Thank you SS Klondike for the many memories and may you live on for many more years as grand as the day you plied the river.

Hank Karr and his song Paddelwheeler


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