Wood from Propeller Indiana

The abundance of timber along the shores of the Great Lakes gave steamboats a ready supply of fuel. Partly burned logs from Indiana’s boiler grate indicate that the boiler had been stoked just before the steamboat sank.
Pound for pound, coal provides more energy than wood. Coal was found in the vicinity of the boiler in the hold, and historical sources indicate that it was a common fuel on upbound (northerly) voyages, while wood was the principal downbound fuel.
Object Name
fuel, cordwood
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
average: 48 in x 6 in; x 121.92 cm x 15.24 cm
Associated Place
Great Lakes
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Cultures & Communities
Energy & Power
Industry & Manufacturing
On the Water exhibit
Expansion and Reform
See more items in
Work and Industry: Maritime
On the Water exhibit
On the Water
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of Michigan Department of State, Michigan History Division (through Bruce J. Andrews)
Publication title
On the Water online exhibition
Publication URL

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