All Aboard | KCUR

All Aboard

Jul 14, 2015

Steamboat Robert E. Lee, a painting by August Norieri
Credit Wikimedia Commons

It was smelly, crowded and potentially life-threatening, but riding on a steamboat was de rigeur for travelers to Kansas City in the mid-nineteenth century. For a brief and some might say "golden" era, the steamboat was also the primary agent of settlement and change. How steamboats shaped Kansas City.


  • David Hawley, Steamboat Arabia Museum
  • Patrick Dobson, historian
  • Steve Terry, captain, The Mark Twain
  • Paula Rose, Steamboat Arabia Museum
  • Carol Lewis, resident, Hannibal, Mo.