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Steamboat Companies in Alaska and the Yukon Territory

by Murray Lundberg


   

Alaska Commercial Company

  • 1867, formed in San Francisco as Hutchinson, Kohl & Company.
  • 1867, bought the steamer POLITOFSKY and the brig CONSTANTINE.
  • 1869, built the sternwheeler YUKON (or YOUKON); wrecked ca. 1882.
  • ca.1870-1895, all shipping was under the control of Captain Gustave Niebaum, a former officer on Russian-America Company ships.
  • their boats were mostly named for the wives and daughters of the directors; the NAT&T named theirs after the directors themselves.
  • 1883, built the second sternwheeler YUKON.
  • 1883, the company's competitors in Alaska, the Western Fur and Trading Company were bought out. Included in the purchase was the sternwheeler ST. MICHAEL. The purchase followed a trade war that saw fur prices rise to the point where the Indians were getting more for the furs than the companies could get for them in San Francisco; when prices dropped back to normal rates, there was a great deal of tension between the traders and the Indians for years. (Schwatka).
  • 1886, successfully petitioned the U.S. government to stop any non-ACCo ships from hunting seals in the Bering Sea.
  • 1895, built the ALICE at Andreafsky.
  • 1898, operating 4 coastal steamers and 12 sternwheelers; ST. PAUL, PORTLAND, BERTHA and DORA; and ALICE, BELLA, HANNAH, LEAH, LOUISE, MARGARET, SADIE, SARAH, SUSIE, VICTORIA, W. H. SEWARD, and YUKON (PAM1898-33, ACC Guide to the Klondike). By September, the tug MARIAN had been added (KN,Sept.3).
  • 1899, operating the coastal steamers BERTHA, PORTLAND and ST.PAUL; the coastal side-wheeler SADIE between St. Michael and Nome; tugs BELLA and YUKON; pilot boat VICTORIA across the Yukon Flats; and the river steamers ALICE, HANNAH, LEAH, LOUISE, MARGARET, SARAH and SUSIE.
  • 1901, "the principal navigation company on the lower river, operates 14 boats": ALICE, BELLA, CITY OF PARIS, HANNAH, LEAH, LUELLA, LOUISE, MARGARET, SADIE, SARAH, SUSIE, VICTORIA, YUKON, and 1 unnamed (Star,Mar.6).
  • 1901, merged with the Alaska Exploration Company and the Empire Transportation Company, reorganizing as the Northern Commercial Company for retail trade, and the Northern Navigation Company for transportation.
  • 1974, the name Alaska Commercial Company reappears when the Northern Commercial Company is sold in 3 parts; the rural branch stores, sold to the Community Enterprise Development Corp., take on the ACC name.
  • late November 1992, the last 20 stores of the ACC are sold to the North West Company of Winnipeg, for $6.5 million.


Alaska Exploration Company:
  • primary shareholders were the Liebes family.
  • 1898, operated the ARNOLD, LEON and LINDA.
  • 1899, operated 12 boats; the sternwheelers ARNOLD, F. K. GUSTIN, HERMAN, LEON, LINDA and MARY F. GRAFF, the tugs ARGONAUT, C. H. BRADLEY, CUB, MAY D. and METEOR, the propeller launch CLARA BELLE, and "six large barges." The river boats connect at St. Michael with the steamers HOMER and CHARLES NELSON for San Francisco.
  • 1900, operated the LEON, MARY F.GRAFF, OTTER and SEATTLE No. 1.
  • 1901, combined with the Alaska Commercial Company and the Empire Transportation Company to form the Northern Navigation Company.


Alaska Meat Company:
  • 1899, operated the LOTTA TALBOT.


The Alaskan Bonanza Mining, Trading and Transportation Company:
  • a subsidiary of the Klondike Promotion Company of Chicago.
  • incorporated in Illinois; President John Jamieson, Secretary George Sutherland. 1898, built the FORTUNE HUNTER at Chicago; knocked down and re-assembled at St. Michael.


Alaskan Pacific Express Company:
  • a division of Pacific Steamship Company (PSC), set up in August 1897 to handle transportation in Alaska and the Yukon from all points where PSC steamers called.


Alaska Packers' Association
  • based in San Francisco, CA.
  • Fleet List:
    - 1893-1900 GEORGE SKOLFIELD (1870), wooden ship.
    - 1895-1925 LLEWELLYN J. MORSE (1877), wooden ship.
    - 1896-1927 CENTENNIAL (1875), wooden ship, re-rigged in 1904 as a four-masted barkentine.
    - 1896-1926 SANTA CLARA (1876), wooden
    - 1896-1898 STERLING (1873), wooden
    - 1897-1925 BOHEMIA (1875), wooden
    - 1898-1925 INDIANA (1876), wooden
    - 1898-1918 TACOMA (1881), wooden
    - 1901-1936 STAR OF INDIA (1863) ex EUTERPE, iron barque.
    - 1901-19__ HIMALAYA (1863)
    - STAR OF PERU, iron
    - 1902-19__ LA ESCOCESA (1868)
    - STAR OF CHILE ex COALINGA,
    - 1906-1908 STAR OF BENGAL (1874), iron ship.
    - 1904-1933 STAR OF ALASKA (1886), ex BALCLUTHA, iron ship.
    - 1905-19__ STAR OF ENGLAND (1893) ex BLAIRMORE ex ABBY PALMER
    - 1907-1926 STAR OF RUSSIA (1874), iron ship.
    - 1907-1933 STAR OF FRANCE (1877), iron ship.
    - 1907-1927 STAR OF ITALY (1877), iron ship.
    - 1909-19__ STAR OF HOLLAND (1885) ex HOMEWARD BOUND ex OTTO GILDERMEISTER ex ZEMINDAR
    - 1909-19__ STAR OF ICELAND (1896) ex WILSCOTT
    - 1909-1914 STAR OF SCOTLAND (1887), ex KENILWORTH, four-masted barque.
    - 1910-1935 STAR OF LAPLAND (1902) ex ATLAS (1902), four-masted barque.
    - 1910-1935 STAR OF FINLAND (1899) ex KAIULANI, three-masted barque.
    - 1910-1929 STAR OF GREENLAND (1892) ex HAWAIIAN ISLAND (1892), four-masted barque.
    - 1910-1935 STAR OF ZEALAND (1900) ex ASTRAL
    - 1913-1918 STAR OF POLAND (1901) ex ACME
    - 1919-1928 STAR OF FALKLAND (1892) ex ARAPAHOE ex STEINBEK ex DURBIRDGE
    - 1922-1935 STAR OF SHETLAND (1899) ex EDWARD SEWALL, four-masted barque.


Alaska Steamship Company:
  • 1895, formed by Captain George Roberts, George H. Lent and Charles E. Peabody.
  • 1895, bought the WILLAPA; she left Seattle on her first voyage to Alaska on March 3, 1895.
  • October 19, 1901, Klondike Nugget: "The remaining half interest in the Lynn canal steamer Dirigo, Captain McGregor, has been purchased by the Alaska Steamship Company, which operates the vessel, for a consideration of $60,000. John S. Kimball of San Francisco owned the interest sold. The deal gives the Alaska Steamship Company entire ownership of the four vessels, the Dolphin, Dirigo, Farallon and Rosalie, long operated by the company. Negotiations for the sale were concluded [October 7]."


Alaska Yukon Navigation Company: apparently a misinterpretation of AYN, American Yukon Navigation Company.


American Yukon Navigation Company:
  • 1913, established as a division of the White Pass & Yukon Route to handle the lower Yukon traffic.
  • 1913, operated 2 steamers built at Whitehorse for them; ALASKA and YUKON.
  • April 1914, bought out the assets of the Northern Navigation Company, following a major rate war that would have bankrupted both companies soon; rates from Whitehorse to Dawson had dropped from $26 to $5. AYN service was extended to cover the entire lower Yukon, Tanana, Koyukuk, Kuskokwim and Iditarod regions. Head office of the company was in Chicago, with F. C. Elliott president.
  • 1914, operated 10 steamers and 2 tugs: ALASKA, ALICE, DELTA, LOUISE, M. L. WASHBURN, RELIANCE, SARAH, SCHWATKA, TANANA and YUKON; and KLONDYKE and ?.
  • 1915-1922, W. D. Gordon is Superintendent
  • 1915, operated 10 steamers, 1 tug and 2 mail launches: ALASKA, DELTA, M. L. WASHBURN, RELIANCE, SARAH, SCHWATKA, SEATTLE No. 3, SUSIE, TANANA and YUKON; METEOR; and SIBILLA and WARRIOR.
  • winter 1915-1916, St. Michael and Andreafsky plants badly damaged by a storm, with the warehouse, oil houses and oil tanks all blown down.
  • 1916, operated 10 steamers, 1 tug and 2 mail launches: ALASKA, DELTA, M. L. WASHBURN, RELIANCE, SARAH, SCHWATKA, SEATTLE No. 3, SUSIE, TANANA and YUKON; METEOR; and SIBILLA and KOTLIK.
  • 1917 was AYN's peak year; they were operating 12 steamers, 2 tugs and 3 launches: ALASKA, ALICE, HERMAN, LOUISE, M. L. WASHBURN, RELIANCE, SARAH, SCHWATKA, SEATTLE No.3, SUSIE, TANANA and YUKON; KLONDYKE and METEOR; and KOTLIK, SIBILLA and WARRIOR. spring 1918, Dawson AYN dock so badly damaged by ice that it was abandoned until business improves.
  • 1918, operating 9 steamers, 1 tug and 5 launches: ALASKA, HERMAN, JULIA B., M. L. WASHBURN, RELIANCE, SARAH, SEATTLE No. 3, TANANA and YUKON; METEOR; and KOTLIK, PILOT, RELIEF, SIBILLA and WAHPOO.
  • 1919, operating 8 steamers, 1 tug and 3 launches: ALASKA, JULIA B., LOUISE, M. L. WASHBURN, RELIANCE, SEATTLE No. 3, TANANA and YUKON; METEOR; and KOTLIK, RELIEF and SIBILLA.
  • 1919, town of Nenana develops as railroad construction centre; very important to AYN.
  • 1920, operating 8 steamers, 1 tug and 4 launches: ALASKA, HERMAN, LOUISE, M. L. WASHBURN, RELIANCE, SEATTLE No. 3, TANANA and YUKON; METEOR; and KESTREL, KOTLIK, PELICAN and SIBILLA.
  • 1921, operating 6 steamers, 1 tug and 3 launches: ALASKA, HERMAN, RELIANCE, SEATTLE No. 3, TANANA and YUKON; METEOR; and KOTLIK, PELICAN and SIBILLA
  • 1922, operating 3 steamers, 1 tug and 3 launches: ALASKA, HERMAN and SEATTLE No. 3; METEOR; and ANNA, KOTLIK and SIBILLA.
  • 1922, a fire started in the St. Michael powerhouse, and destroyed the power house, laundry, bathhouse and cold storage buildings, along with the winter's supply of meat (COR722).
  • 1923, the Tanana River, and the Shipyards at Fairbanks and Chena, were abandoned.
  • 1923, operating 3 steamers and 1 tug: ALASKA, JULIA B. and YUKON; and METEOR.
  • 1925, operating HAZEL B. and YUKON
  • 1930s, Herb Wheeler, President.
  • operated the YUKON, and barge TRAHEY, on the lower river to Nenana.
  • dissolved in 1942.


Arctic Express Company:
  • British company, with Francis Rattenbury as President.
  • September 1898, starting a large scow and trading post operation along the Yukon River. The intention was to have posts one days travel apart along the river (KN,Sept.21).


Austin, A.R.:
  • operated the ALPHA (#107924).


Barrington Brothers:
  • spring 1898, brothers Edward M. and Sydney Barrington joined with Mr. McConnell and Mr. Hamilton, bought the WILLIE IRVING.
  • August 1898, Edward died of typhoid; his resistance had been lowered because of overwork.
  • 1909, formed the Side Steams Navigation Company.


Barrington Navigation Company:
  • managed by S.C.Barrington (letterhead at YA, Minter collection, MacBride album).
  • ca. 1920s, operating between Wrangell and Telegraph Creek with the HAZEL B No. 2, HAZEL B No. 3 and HAZEL B No. 4.


Bennett Lake & Klondyke Navigation Company
  • March 25 1898, incorporated at London, England with capital of 75,000 pounds subscribed by prominent Londoners. Incorporated in British Columbia August 25, 1898. President and attorney was Francis Mawson Rattenbury. Other directors were Fall, Sallett, Holland, and one or two others.
  • powers included construction of sawmills, boats, and tramways from the north end of Marsh Lake to Hootalinqua, and around Miles Canyon.
  • January 20 1898, issued contract to Albion Iron Works of Victoria, for machinery for 3 sternwheelers; contract to William Jenkins Stephens of Victoria, for 3 prefabricated sternwheeler hulls; and Bannerman & Boyce of Victoria, for delivery of the machinery and hulls to Lake Bennett. A sawmill was at that point under construction on Lake Bennett, to produce lumber for completion of the boats.
  • 1898, built the FLORA, NORA and ORA at Lake Bennett. The DDN reported that the FLORA, NORA and ORA "were constructed at Wheaton river, ...from lumber sawed in the woods by the company’s sawmill. The machinery, which was manufactured by the Albion Iron Works of Victoria, was brought over the pass at a great cost."
  • late 1898, managed by Otto Partridge.
  • 1899, built the DORA at Lake Bennett.
  • 1899, operated the FLORA and ORA on the river, and the NORA and OLIVE MAY on the lakes.
  • September 1899, their relay posts on the Whitehorse-Dawson road are for sale, as well as "large quantities of dog feed and other provisions" (SDA, Sept. 9). early 1900, reorganized as the Klondyke Corporation, Ltd., with Macdonald Potts as manager, Arthur D. Lewis as "special agent", and Lancaster & Calderhead as Dawson agents (Sun, May 22).


Black Navigation Company
  • (This company history was taken from the company Web site - http://www.yukonfuel.com/ - October 10, 2003)

    Yukon Fuel Company can trace its roots back to Capt. George Black and the Stern wheel riverboat, Idler. The time was 1916 and the place was Fairbanks, Alaska. The great gold rushes in the Klondike and around Fairbanks were over, the country was at war in Europe and the Alaska Railroad had just been completed to link the Interior of Alaska with Anchorage on the coast. The Alaska Railroad bought or took over the vessels of the White Pass and Yukon and continued seasonal freight and passenger service to the entire Yukon River network. The side streams and the smaller "fish camps" were the strong point for Black Navigation. Strong ties to individual customer service were the reason for the success and survival of Black Navigation.
    The period of time between World War 1 and World War 2 were, to put it in one word, tough. A low population, little industry, no money, all kept the Black Navigation Co. lean and by necesity, efficient. Barrels of gas, wooden cases containing two five gallon cans, paper cases of lube oil, were bought in Fairbanks and sold along the river, along with clothing, food stock, anything to generate sales and serve the public.
    As the 50s rolled into the 60s, a market change began along the rivers. The traditional dog sled began to give way to the more modern snow machine or "Iron Dog". As more airports were built, more pickup trucks were brought to the villages. Bulk fuel tanks began to increase in the villages and a Alaska Village Electric Co Op was formed to manage electrical services on a entire village basis. Up to this time, with a few exceptions, if you wanted electricity, you bought and installed your own generator. During this time, Black Navigation became Yutana Barge Lines and Yutana took over the Alaska Railroad boats and barges out of Nenana, Alaska.
    Yutana was also the Wholesale Distributor for Standard Oil of California and distributed fuel to the bulk plants in Fort Yukon, Galena, St. Mary's and Nenana. The name Yutana is a combination of the Yukon and Tanana River names.
    During the 70s and 80s the shift from the Company handling 80% deck freight and 20% petroleum products changed to 85% petroleum products and 15% deck freight. By now the Company was using the name Yukon Fuel Company for it's fuel operations in Fort Yukon (a partnership with GZ, the local Native Group) and its ownership of the Nenana plant. Yukon Fuel actively marketed the entire Yukon River which was delivered from its Nenana facility by Yutana Barge Lines vessels.
    The period of the '90s saw the shift from a Barge line that happened to have a petroleum distribution company, to a petroleum distribution company that happened to own some tugs and barges. Yukon Fuel was shipping an increasing amount by air in various airplanes. The majority of this increase was to villages that had no access to the very cost effective river system. Yukon Fuel purchased or built bulk petroleum facilities in Galena, St. Mary's, St. Michael, Hooper Bay, Illiamna, and Kenai. During 1999 Yutana Barge Lines was sold to a vessel management group and Yukon Fuel for the first time in it's history was 100% a petroleum products sales and distribution company. Yukon Fuel is one of three companies owned by Northland Holdings Inc. The other sister Companies are Service Oil and Gas of Glenallen, Alaska and Northland Services of Seattle, WA.
    The Year 2000 marked the Millennium and also the acquisition of a major Western Alaska petroleum distribution facility in Bethel, Alaska. Bethel Fuel Sales' 10 million gallon facility is the hub for the Kuskokwim River and near coastal areas around Kuskokwim Bay. For Yukon Fuel the timing of this purchase unfortunately coincided with the highest prices in the wholesale market since the 1970 Arab Oil embargo. As prices normalize, however, it is expected that the entire region should enjoy the benefits of more efficient and cost effective distribution.
    The near future will see the Company continuing to work closely with the various regulatory agencies and the Denali Commission to upgrade the energy infrastructure of "bush" Alaska. Yukon Fuel will continue to selectively build petroleum distribution facilities where appropriate. Yukon Fuel Company is committed to the energy needs of the peoples of rural Alaska and will continue to provide dependable, quality service to this area.



Blue Star Navigation Company:
  • September 1898, General Manager at Dawson was R.D.Ryan; the company owned the 718-ton sternwheeler PILGRIM. She was operated through the 1899 season.


Boston & Alaska Transportation Company:
  • 1898, built the sternwheeler COLONEL McNAUGHT at San Francisco, and the tug ANNA E. FAY at Seattle.
  • 1898, also operated the sternwheelers PHILIP B. LOW and GOV. PINGREE.
  • by August 1898, the company was in financial trouble; the COLONEL McNAUGHT had been sold, and by late September the PHILIP B. LOW had been seized for non-payment of wages.


British America Corporation Ltd.:
  • October 7 1897, incorporated at London, England, with capital of 1,500,000 pounds. Head office established at Rossland, B.C., as the company's primary interest was mining in the Kootenays.
  • September 6 1898, the J. P. LIGHT and TYRRELL arrived at Dawson; the company also bought Tom O’Brien's store and warehouse in Klondike City (KN,Sept.10). 1898, built the sternwheeler MARQUIS OF DUFFERIN at Victoria; in July she was wrecked enroute to the Stikine River. Bought the CONSTANTINE from the Canadian Pacific railway; she had been planned for Stikine River service.
  • 1898, operating the LIGHTNING, J. P. LIGHT and TYRRELL; sold them to the White Pass in July 1900.
  • June 4 1901, stockholders in London, England voted to enter voluntary liquidation due to the financial collapse of the London, Liverpool & Globe Company. (KN,June 12). Affleck says that the company liquidated on February 1, 1910.


British American Steamship Company:
  • the transportation division of Frank Waterhouse Ltd.
  • 1899, operating the coastal steamers ELIHU THOMPSON and GARONNE; and the river steamers ROBERT KERR and MILWAUKEE.
  • September 1899, operating the coastal steamer GARONNE, and the river steamers LOTTA TALBOT, MILWAUKEE, PILGRIM, REINDEER, ROBERT KERR, SYBIL and W. H. EVANS.


British Yukon Navigation Company: due to the amount of information, there is a separate BYN page.


Burpee, Isaac:
  • operated the BURPEE (#107157).


The California Alaska Commercial & Navigation Company:
  • August 1897, planning to build two 300-ton light-draft steamers to be used on the Yukon River. They sent an expedition to St. Michael on the NAVARRO on ca.August 24. The company also plans to experiment with ice boats “on the Hudson River plan” (SFE,Aug.20).


California and North West Mining Company:
  • September 1898, owned the 144-ton sternwheeler CLARA.


California - Yukon Trading Company:
  • President was Mr.Kingore.
  • August 1898, operating the coastal steamer MORGAN CITY, and the sternwheeler W.H.RIDEOUT.


Canadian Development Company Limited:
  • operated on the Stikine River prior to 1897.
  • 1898, purchased their first Yukon River boat, the ANGLIAN.
  • 1898, built the shipyards downriver from West Dawson, with 4 sets of ways (Knutson).
  • May 1899, awarded the mail contract serving Dawson.
  • 1899 season, based at Bennett, with a shipyard at West Dawson; operating the ANGLIAN, AUSTRALIAN, CANADIAN, COLUMBIAN, TASMANIAN, VICTORIAN and ZEALANDIAN (letterhead). The company also chartered the BAILEY, JOSEPH CLOSSET and SYBIL (DDN,Mining Edition).
  • 1899, constantly being taken to court for huge overcharges, despite contracts having been signed; the company usually won. fall 1900, put out of business by extreme low water at the busiest time of year (COR722, 1903)
  • May 1 1901, the British Yukon Navigation Company, a White Pass subsidiary, took control of 17 steamers owned by the Canadian Development Company; the Yukon River steamers ANGLIAN, BAILEY, CANADIAN, COLUMBIAN, JOSEPH CLOSSET, MARY F.GRAFF, SYBIL, VICTORIAN, YUKONER and ZEALANDIAN; the lake steamers AUSTRALIAN, GLEANER, SCOTIA and TASMANIAN; and the Stikine River steamers HAMLIN, McCONNELL and OGILVIE.


Canadian National Steamships:


Canadian Pacific Navigation Company, Limited:
  • formed in January 1883; managed by Captain John Irving. Took over the former Stikine River sternwheelers GERTRUDE and WESTERN SLOPE, among others. 1898, operating the BEAVER (#107896) and YUKONER (107098) on the Stikine River.


Canadian Pacific Railway Company:
  • 1898, operated, or planned to operate the following sternwheelers on the Stikine River: CONSTANTINE (US#127240), G.M.DAWSON (#111544), HAMLIN (#107144), OGILVIE (#107148), TYRRELL (#107157), DALTON (US#157507), DUCHESNAY (#107151), McCONNELL (#107152), SCHWATKA (US#116812), and WALSH (#81601).


Casca Trading & Transportation Company:
  • May 30 1898, the AMUR left Victoria with “a large number of mules and 10 head of cattle for the Casca Trading & Transportation Company.” (The Province, June 1). incorporated June 2 1898, with capital of $100,000. The registered office was at Glenora, B.C. Owned by mining engineer Arnold Pike of Victoria, and Warburton Pike of Saturna Island, B.C. Rumours that the Hon.Edgar Dewdney was involved are not documented (Affleck).
  • 1898, built the sternwheeler CASCA (#103919).
  • October 1911, struck off Register of Companies.


Columbia Navigation Company:
  • 1898, built the 463-ton MONARCH at Ballard.
  • August 1898, Dawson manager was Mr.Churchill.
  • 1899, operated the coastal steamer LAURADA, and the river steamers MONARCH and SOVEREIGN.
  • 1900, operating the SOVEREIGN; lost in a storm off Nome in the fall (Star,Mar.6).
  • 1901, operating the PILGRIM on the lower river, and the MONARCH on the upper river (Star,Mar.6)


Crescent Line:
  • June 1898, leased the CITY OF COLUMBIA to run between Seattle and St. Michael, where she will connect with the W.H.EVANS and NORTHERN LIGHT. They are honouring contracts made by the Columbia Navigation & Trading Company.


J. D. Crimmin Syndicate:
  • based in Boston. operated the WILBUR CRIMMIN (US#81606).


Dawson and White Horse Navigation Company:
  • owned by E.M.”Black” Sullivan and Thomas O’Brien.
  • 1901, planning to operate the J.P.LIGHT, TYRRELL, and LIGHTNING on the upper river (Star,Mar.6) Letterhead at YA (Minter collection, MacBride album) states that in July 1901, the 3 boats were operated from the Auroar Dock at Dawson; E.M.Sullivan was the General Manager, R.B.Woodson the Traffic Manager.
  • 1901, decided to stay off the upper river; building and running scows from St. Michael to Dawson, charging $80 per ton for freight (KN,May 2).


Dominion Commercial Company
  • 1898, owned the MINNEAPOLIS (US#92864).


Dominion Steamboat Line Company Ltd.
  • assumed to be a division of the Dominion Commercial Company, owners of the MINNEAPOLIS in 1898.
  • incorporated on May 26 1899, with 9,000 shares issued at $5 each. The registered office was Bennett, B.C. Owned by 3 men from Paris, Texas; James Shelby Williams (now of Bennett), owner of the CLIFFORD SIFTON (#107528), which was transferred to the company, C. B. Niles and James L. Wortham.
  • September 6, 1899, Daily Alaskan: “The Dominion Steamboat Line is the quickest between Skagway and Dawson, or the states. Al. McGillis, Skagway, agent.”
  • 1903, has “small longitudinal ways at Hootalinqua” for sale for $500; purchased by the BYNCo.


Empire Transportation Company:
  • head office is in Seattle. The company is a division of the International Navigation Company, one of the world’s largest.
  • October 1898, General Agent is Gates D. Fahnestock.
  • September 1898, operated the sternwheelers TACOMA and VICTORIA.
  • May 1899, launched the 6-propeller EMPIRE at Seattle.
  • 1899, operating the coastal steamers CONEMAUGH, INDIANA, OHIO and PENNSYLVANIA, which were all taken to the Philippines to be used as troop transports; and the river steamers ALASKA (US#107458), DAWSON CITY (US#157508), EMPIRE (US#136674), MANOOK, St. Michael (US#116816), SEATTLE (US#116817), TACOMA (US#145773), TANANA (US#59482), VICTORIA (US#161811) and YUKON.
  • September 1899, “The E.T.Co., a branch of the International Line of New York, entered into the Yukon service with well-matured plans; but the innovations adopted in the construction of the propeller tugs were not suitable for navigation on the swift current of the Yukon.” (DDN,Mining Edition).
  • 1901, combined with the Alaska Commercial Company and the Alaska Exploration Company to form the Northern Navigation Company.


Galvin, Pat: see North British American Trading & Transportation Company


Glenora Steamship Company Ltd.:
  • incorporated on March 12 1898, with 250 shares issued at $100 each. The registered office was Vancouver, B.C. Owned by the owners of the sternwheeler COURSER (#96997), which was transferred to the company: they were H.B.Barrington, W.Botsford, John Burns, Jr., H.Lee and Robert Martin.
  • 1898, operated the COURSER on the Stikine River.
  • October 1911, struck off the Register of Companies.


Gold Star Transportation Company:
  • operated the GOLD STAR (#107856) and W.H.RIDEOUT (#107855).


Hutchinson,Kohl & Company: see Alaska Commercial Company.


John Irving Navigation Company Ltd.:
  • incorporated on May 4, 1899, with 50,000 shares issued at $1 each. The registered office was at Victoria. Owned by Captain John Irving; he transferred his sternwheelers GLEANER and SCOTIA to the company in exchange for 49,995 shares.
  • 1898, operating the GLEANER and SCOTIA on the Upper Lakes.
  • 1898, owned the YUKONER; sold her in September to Pat Galvin’s British North American Trading & Transportation Company.
  • 1911, struck off the Register of Companies.


Kerry, Albert S.:
  • operated the OLIVE MAY (#107154).


Klondyke Corporation Ltd:
  • ca.April 1900, the Bennett Lake & Klondike Navigation Company was reorganized as the Klondyke Corporation, Ltd., with Macdonald Potts as manager, Arthur D.Lewis as “special agent”, and Lancaster & Calderhead as Dawson agents (Sun,May 22). 1901, General Manager was R.W.Calderhead.
  • based in Dawson, operating the ORA, FLORA and NORA, which were all rebuilt. In 1898, the NORA worked the upper lakes, the FLORA from Whitehorse to Five Fingers, and the ORA from Five Fingers to Dawson.
  • 1902, built the LA FRANCE (#103915) and THISTLE (#107867).


Klondike-Chicago Transportation & Trading Company:
  • operated the LULU STEWART, MASCOTTE and PAUL WATERS.


The Klondike Mining, Trading & Transport Corporation Ltd.:
  • July 18, 1897, incorporated at London, England; 250,000 shares issued at 1 pound each.
  • based in Victoria; the Canadian attorneys were Sir Charles Tupper and the Hon.Frederick Peters.
  • April 1898, operating the steamer AMUR between Victoria and Skagway, and the sternwheelers ISKOOT (#103928(, NAHLEEN (#107104) and LOUISE (US#140620) on the Stikine River.
  • March 30 1902, company dissolved.


Klondike Promotion Company: see The Alaskan Mining, Trading and Transportation Company


Klondike, Yukon & Stewart Pioneer Company Ltd.
  • 1898, incorporated at London, England.
  • 1898, managed by Mr.McLean.
  • August 1898, owns the JAMES DOMVILLE, COL.McNAUGHT and “several others”.


Ladue Yukon Transportation Company:
  • a division of the Joseph Ladue Gold Mining & Development Co.
  • April 1898, bought the steamer MORGAN CITY from the Morgan Line at New Orleans. She was brought around Cape Horn to serve the Klondike trade, but after making 1 trip to Skagway and Valdez, was chartered by the U.S. government, at $600 per day, to work as a troop transport in the Philippines. She was lost in the Sea of Japan in September 1899.


Langley Transportation Company:
  • operated by Captain Wallace Langley. He had command of the tug LORNE at Vancouver in the 1890s, and in May 1898, was promoted to Port Captain for “the Dunsmuir fleet” (The Province).
  • 1900, bought the WILBUR CRIMMINS
  • 1905, had the TANA built at Seattle.
  • November 1909, bought the launch PEEP at Seattle.
  • 1918, bought the QUICKSTEP.
  • 1920, converted the LAVELLE YOUNG to a barge.


Liebes & Company:
  • 1898, built the 638-ton LEON and 692-ton LINDA at Unalaska, and the 456-ton HERMAN at Dutch Harbour; named for Leon, Linda and Herman Liebes.


John McKenna:
  • 1898, operated the small sternwheeler ALAMEDA (#107257), and the propeller launch ALERT (#107515) on Lake Bennett and the upper river.


Merchants Yukon Transportation Line:
  • 1902, built the LA FRANCE, joining the ORA, NORA and FLORA.
  • 1906, bought the fleet of the North American Trading & Transportation Company (Affleck).
  • 1911, built the barge A.B.SHAY at Seattle; sold it to the American Yukon Navigation Company in 1914.


Missouri-Alaska Gold Company:
  • operated the CITY OF PARIS (US#127269).


Nixon, Captain:
  • 1901, owns and operating the GOLD STAR (Star,Mar.6).


North American Trading & Transportation Company
  • formed in 1892.
  • 1892, built the PORTUS B.WEARE, named for their President.
  • 1895, built the ALICE and BELLA
  • June 1897, ALICE and PORTUS B.WEARE were the first 2 boats to leave Dawson with Klondike gold.
  • July 25 1897, announces that it will refuse to sell tickets to Alaska to “any except the hardiest of men.” They are operating the steamers CLEVELAND and PORTLAND, and river steamers CHARLES H. HAMILTON, JOHN CUDAHY, JOHN J.HEALEY, PORTUS B.WEARE, T.C.POWER and KLONDIKE (SFE).
  • August 1897, the company has chartered the 264-ton schooner QUEEN to run from Seattle to St. Michael. On her first trip, she took a construction crew with a 150-person prefabricated hotel, 450,000 feet of lumber, and all the materials needed to build the docks, warehouses, and a boat, needed for the Yukon trade. August 1897, the fare on the PORTLAND has been raised to $700, and then $1,000; the company explained that for that price they would get their passengers to Dawson before June 15 1898. They expected to get caught at St. Michael for the winter, and would feed and house the men, plus give them work cutting wood at $4 per cord, a rate that was soon lowered to $1 [at St. Michael?].
  • 1898, photo #433 in Coutts Collection #86/15 shows an unknown NAT&T steam launch at St. Michael.
  • 1898, operating the river steamers CHARLES H.HAMILTON, JOHN C.BARR, JOHN CUDAHY, PORTUS B.WEARE and T.C.POWER; and the tug KLONDIKE.
  • 1899, operating the coastal steamers ALLIANCE and ROANOKE; and the river steamers CHARLES H.HAMILTON, J.J.HEALY, JOHN C.BARR, JOHN CUDAHY, PORTUS B.WEARE and T.C.POWER.
  • 1901, operating the coastal steamer ROANOKE, the river sternwheelers CHARLES H.HAMILTON, J.J.HEALY, JOHN C.BARR, JOHN CUDAHY, PORTUS B. WEARE, T.C.POWER and WILL H.ISOM; and the tug KLONDIKE at St. Michael.
  • May 1906, using black and Giant powder to blast ice off the hulls of the boats at Dawson; they used 40 kegs of powder (DDN, May 12).
  • 1906, sold fleet to the Merchants Yukon Transportation Company (Affleck).


North British American Trading & Transportation Company:
  • Pat Galvin, president
  • June 2 1898, The Province reported that Galvin, having sold his mining claims for $1,500,000, was having 4 steel sternwheelers built at San Francisco; 3 were complete, with the last one to be launched on the 11th. They are all 200 feet long, with 40 foot beam, designed as light draft; it is not known which boats these were.
  • 1898, built the large MARY ELLEN GALVIN, but it drew too much water to get across the Yukon flats, and was abandoned.
  • 1898, bought the 781-ton YUKONER from Captain John Irving at St. Michael, for $45,000.


Northern Lakes & Rivers Navigation Company Ltd.:
  • February 3 1899, incorporated at Victoria; 500 shares were issued at $100 each. Owned by James Carroll of Seattle, C.E.Bourden of Tacoma, and John Irving of Victoria. Carroll transferred to the company, for 47,000 shares (Affleck - possibly 470?), the sternwheelers LINDERMAN (#107519), RUTH (#107518), VICTORIAN (#107520) and VIVIAN (#107521).


Northern Commercial Company:
  • divided responsibilities, forming the Northern Navigation Company to handle all transportation.


Northern Navigation Company
  • head office San Francisco.
  • April 1900, owns the HANNAH, KOYUKUK, ROCK ISLAND, SADIE, SARAH, SEATTLE No.3, and SUSIE.
  • 1900 season rates: St. Michael-Dawson, first class only, $100; Dawson-St. Michael, first class, $70; second class, on deck, meals with crew, $50; Dawson-Bergman, first class, $80; second class, $60; Bergman-Bettles, first class, $20; second class $15. Freight from Dawson-Bergman is $80 per ton.
  • reported as being “disbanded in May 1902 (Sun,May28).
  • spring 1904, launches 2 mail launches at St. Michael; the DISPATCH and RELIEF are both 35 feet long, with 12-horsepower engines that will drive them as quickly as the large steamers.
  • May 1906, building 2 new 200-ton barges at Whitehorse, for use on the Dawson-Fairbanks run (DDN, May 6).
  • June 13 1907, asks for 90-day extension in which to prepare documents needed for Yukon incorporation. Request approved same day. On August 10, incorporation papers were filed. Head office is in Camden, New Jersey. GOV1607,f.41 has annual reports for 1907-1913.
  • 1909, built the ALICE II at Seattle.
  • early 1914, sold out to the newly-formed American Yukon Navigation Company, a division of the White Pass & Yukon Route.


North West Mounted Police:
  • late August 1898, assembled two steam launches at Ft. Herchmer. The boats were 70 feet long, with 15 foot beam; the steel hulls were manufactured at San Francisco, the engine was British. The pieces were taken to Victoria and partially assembled; then taken north and finished by a crew under Captain Call, who had come up on the COLUMBIAN for the project. The boats were designed to do 16 mph (KN,Aug.24).


Northwest Trading Company:
  • 1888, operated the steam tugs FAVORITE and ROSE, and the steam launch LOUISE as part of their cannery operation at Killisnoo.


Nott, R.J.:
  • operated the EMMA NOTT (#107256).


Nugget Express:
  • 1898, floating several scows to Dawson (Knutson,p.44)


Pacific Coast & Kotzebue Sound Transportation & Trading Company:
  • June 1898, operating a warehouse at Kotzebue, and may be operating the sternwheeler ARCTIC BIRD, which is advertised as connecting with the coastal steamer GRACE DOLLAR.


Pacific Cold Storage Company:
  • 1898, operating the coastal steamer ELIHU THOMPSON and the DASHING WAVE to Skagway/Dyea.
  • 1898, operating the LOTTA TALBOT (US#141551).
  • 1898-1913, operating the ROBERT KERR.


Pacific Packing and Navigation Company:
  • October 1901, operating the NEWPORT from Seattle to Copper River and Cook Inlet ports.


Rant, Captain William John:
  • November 5 1897, he and his son Norman left for Victoria; Captain Rant will return in February to “resume his official duties at Lake Bennett” (Skaguay News).
  • 1898, built the EMMA (#107260) and JOSEPH CLOSSET (#107528) at Lake Bennett.


Reed, Alfred S.:
  • operated the SYBIL (#107523).


Robinson, William C.:
  • operated the steam scow OMEGA (#107932) on Lake Bennett.


Rothesay Shipping Company Ltd.:
  • incorporated on November 15, 1897; 100 shares were issued at $500 each. The registered office was at Vancouver. Owned by Gordon T. Begg, John Burns and Thomas Dunn of Vancouver, and several others thought to be from Scotland (Affleck). 1898, built the ROTHESAY (#10742) for service on the Stikine River, but she was diverted to the Fraser instead.


Sanborn, Irwin B.:
  • operated the BAILEY (#107715).


Seattle, St. Michael & Dawson City Navigation Company:
  • operated the A.B.GRAHAM.


Seattle & Yukon Steamship Company:
  • June 1898, operating the coastal steamers PROGRESSO and ELIHU between Seattle and St. Michael, and the Moran-built sternwheelers F.K.GUSTIN, J.P.LIGHT, and CAMPBELL on the lower Yukon.


Seattle-Yukon Transportation Company:
  • 1897, Seattle mayor W.D.Wood had resigned, raised $150,000, and formed the company to provide through transportation to the goldfields. He chartered the HUMBOLDT for $1,000 per day (KN,Dec.25,1900), and his passengers signed contracts that once they arrived at St. Michael they had to assemble the SEATTLE No.1 (US#116853), nicknamed the “Mukluk”, and a barge that was identical to the SEATTLE’s hull (SFE,Aug.8).
  • April 1898, operating the coastal steamers PROGRESO and ELIHU THOMSON, and the Yukon River steamers F.K.GUSTIN (US#121071), J.P.LIGHT and D.R.CAMPBELL (US#157509). The ALLIANCE made at least 1 trip north for them.
  • 1898, built the SEATTLE No.3 (US#116854) and SEATTLE No.4 at Dutch Harbour.
  • 1900, operating the ocean steamers SANTA ANA and LAKME; the river steamers ROCK ISLAND, D.R.CAMPBELL, KATIE HEMRICH and SEATTLE No.3; and the barges SEATTLE No.1, SEATTLE No.4 and ADMIRAL (KN,Dec.25).
  • December 1900, the sternwheeler MILWAUKEE was added to the river fleet (KN,Dec.25).
  • n.d., taken over by the Northern Navigation Company.


Side Streams Navigation Company:
  • formed in 1909 to supplement the BYH service (Cohen). Owned by Nathaniel B. and John S.Raymond (Affleck).
  • received modest government grants to subsidize operations (Coates & Morrison)
  • operated the NASUTLIN (#133738), PAULINE (#116611) and VIDETTE (#107869) on the White, Stewart, Pelly and Porcupine Rivers.
  • taken over by BYN ca.1915
  • dissolved in 1919 (Cohen).


Stacey, Hiebert & Yukon Syndicate:
  • may have been a subsidiary of the British America Corporation; in 1899, Stacey Hiebert were operating the LIGHTNING (#107156), which was flying the BAC flag.


Standard Oil:
  • 1899, operated the OIL CITY (US#155318) to carry products from St. Michael to Dawson.


Stockton-Alaska Commercial Company:
  • August 1897, headed by Captain Rideout; thought to be the builder of the sternwheeler W.H.RIDEOUT in 1898, in Stockton, California.


Stewart Brothers:
  • 1898, operating scows to Dawson. On June 2, B.A.Stewart lost 2 scows with all the 30 tons of merchandise on board, when they hit Casey’s Rock in the Thirty Mile (Knutson).


Stewart River Company Ltd.:
  • formed at Dawson ca.December 1900; bought the QUICK, and had another 110-foot sternwheeler PROSPECTOR under construction at Whitehorse, under the direction of Captain Edward J.Smythe (Star,Jan.9,1901)
  • 1903, chartered the newly-purchased LA FRANCE from the British Yukon Navigation Company for the month of September.


Stikine Navigation Company Ltd.:
  • incorporated on February 18 1898; 1,000 shares were issued at $100 each. The registered office was at Victoria. Owned by J.A.Mara of Kamloops, and F.S.Barnard and C.A.Holland of Victoria.
  • 1898, operated the sternwheelers SKAGIT CHIEF (US#116158) and STIKINE CHIEF (#107147) on the Stikine River.


Stratton, Winfield Scott:
  • 1898, built the W.S.STRATTON and another boat.


Taylor & Drury:
  • 1909, built the KLUAHNE to supply their trading posts.
  • 1919, bought the THISTLE from the British Yukon Navigation Company, because of the huge increase in business in the Mayo/Keno district; the KLUAHNE was retired in 1920.
  • 1929, the THISTLE was lost on Lake Lebarge, and replaced by the YUKON ROSE. She was sold ca.1944.


Teslin Transportation Company Ltd.:
  • incorporated on February 4 1898; 500 shares were issued at $100 each. The registered office was at Victoria. Owned by F.P.Armstrong and S.Barber of Golden, B.C., and J.A.Mara of Kamloops.
  • 1898, built the 278-ton MARJORIE (#107248) at New Westminster, and the 289-ton MONO (#107102) on the Stikine River.
  • 1911, struck off the Register of Companies.


Teslin Yukon Steam Navigation Company:
  • incorporated on March 14, 1898; 3,000 shares were issued at $5 each. The registered office was at Victoria. Owned by Fred J.Claxton and William James Macauley of Victoria, and H.D.Ollard, James C.Ollard and William Ollard of Tacoma.
  • 1899, built the 82-ton, twin-screw WILLIAM OGILVIE (#107527) for service on the Southern Lakes.


The Trading and Exploring Company Ltd.:
  • 1899, operating the river steamer YUKONER, and the tug CLARA at Dawson.


Upper Yukon Company:
  • incorporated in Washington State on December 29, 1897, 35,000 shares were issued at $1 each. The registered office was at Seattle. Owned by James H.Calvert, Albert J.Goddard, F.H.Kilbourne, J.W.Hughes and C.P.Stone, all of the Puget Sound area. The attorney was W.H.Bone of Victoria.
  • 1897, built the 15-ton A.J.GODDDARD (#107517) at San Francisco.
  • F.H.KILBOURNE (#107516).


Victoria-Yukon Transportation Company:
  • operated the tug LULLY C.


Waechter Brothers:
  • 1918, owned the barge McNABB, towed under contract by the American Yukon Navigation Company.


Walker, John F.:
  • operated the NIAGARA (#107158).


Western Fur and Trading Company:
  • based in San Francisco.
  • ca.1878-1879, built the sternwheeler St. Michael for use on the Yukon River.
  • 1883, the company was bought out by their competition in Alaska, the Alaska Commercial Company. This followed a trade war that saw fur prices rise to the point where the Indians were getting more for the furs than the companies could get for them in San Francisco; when prices dropped back to normal rates, there was a great deal of tension between the traders and the Indians for years. (Schwatka).


White Star Line:
  • August 1898, operating the A.J.GODDARD, F.H.KILBOURNE and JOSEPH CLOSSETT from Bennett.


F.N.York & Company:
  • June 13 1898, launched the ANGLIAN at Teslin Lake.


Yukon Flyer Line, (Inc.):
  • May 1899, Bennett agent M.M.Moore advertises that they are “the only company operating first class steamers” to Dawson. Steamers not named.
  • August 1899, Bennett office taken over by former Pacific Coast Steamship agents A.E.Seeley and F.N.Bush.
  • 1899, operating the ELDORADO and BONANZA KING on the river, and the CLIFFORD SIFTON, RUTH and LINDERMAN on the lakes.
  • the company leased the Aurora Dock, which was built in May/June 1899 by Tom Chisholm and Harry Edwards, across Front Street from the Aurora Saloon.
  • incorporated on April 21, 1900; 6,000 shares were issued at $10 each. Owned by John Carroll of Seattle, James Greer of Victoria and Nels Petersen of Dawson.
  • May 16 1900, bought the ELDORADO and BONANZA KING (Affleck).
  • April 1901, ELDORADO and BONANZA KING put up for Sheriff’s auction.


Yukon Hootalinkwa Navigation Company Ltd.:
  • incorporated on February 3, 1898; 10,000 shares were issued at $5 each. The registered office was at Victoria. Owned by A.S.Crane, G.N.Fulton, W.H.Sisman and W.A.Ward, all of Victoria.
  • n.d., operated the REINDEER (#107099).






Northern Ships and Shipping