09 August 2008

They came in these ships

Would you like to see the ship your ancestors arrived on?

The Steamship Historical Society of America (SSHSA), founded in 1935, has launched an interactive archive to document more than 40,000 lost and forgotten steamship images, 1850s-1980s, preserving two collections.

One collection includes 2,000 fragile large-format glass plates from many US regions, while the other includes 38,000 color slides of ships, ports, steam engine trains, and people, photographed by Edward O. Clark. An historian and organization benefactor, his collection was acquired by SSHSA more than 10 years ago. It was deteriorating and the glass plates had faded as well. The SSHSA received a grant to clean, restore and preserve the collections and make the images available in an online, searchable database, called "Image Porthole;" click here to view.

Located in East Providence, Rhode Island, SSHSA’s mission is to record, preserve and disseminate the history of engine-powered vessels for education, information, and research purposes.

It has some 2,500 members in 43 countries, and maintains one of the largest North American archives devoted to engine-powered vessels, with more than 100 collections containing in excess of 400,000 images.

I was alerted to this new resource by Elizabeth Powell Crowe of Crowe's Nest Genealogy Blog. Thanks, Elizabeth.

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