Model of Western River Flatboat, ca. 1860-1875

This boat model represents a common, simple flat bottomed boat or small barge of the sort that would have been found anywhere on the American western river system around the time of the Civil War. The owners of these boats and their families lived aboard and bought, sold and transported anything they could make a profit on. They traded hardware, manufactured goods, foodstuffs, cloth and clothing, and other goods up and down the rivers until small steamboats gradually replaced them in the later part of the 19th century.
Currently not on view
Object Name
ship model
date made
ca 1990
Norman, James B.
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
overall: 3 3/4 in x 6 3/4 in x 11 3/4 in; 9.525 cm x 17.145 cm x 29.845 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Cultures & Communities
See more items in
Work and Industry: Maritime
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of James B Norman

Visitor Comments

Add a comment about this object

**Please read before submitting the form**

Have a comment or question about this object to share with the community? Please use the form below. Selected comments will appear on this page and may receive a museum response (but we can't promise). Please note that we generally cannot answer questions about the history, rarity, or value of your personal artifacts.

Have a question about anything else, or would you prefer a personal response? Please visit our FAQ or contact page.

Personal information will not be shared or result in unsolicited e-mail. See our privacy policy.

Enter the characters shown in the image.