American Queen Steamboat Co. Archives – Crown Cruise Vacations
A well-loved teddy bear rests in a rocking chair in my guest room. The worn stuffed animal belonged to my husband Bill when he was a child.
Years ago, I was curious as to how that childhood favorite critter got its name. I found the answer. But I was also happy to see a mural about the teddy bear namesake when my American Duchess riverboat stopped in Vicksburg, Mississippi.
Passengers who plan to cruise with the American Queen Steamboat Company (AQSC) and Victory Cruise Lines (VCL) will need to have proof of a COVID-19 vaccination for all sailings beginning July 1, 2021.
In addition, the vaccination requirement will apply to shipboard crew members and non-shipboard employees across all seven vessels in both fleets.
Walking ashore at Paducah, Kentucky, I saw a bittersweet image.
There on the floodwall is a beautiful painting of the three sister riverboats – the Delta Queen, the Mississippi Queen and the American Queen.
The mural depicts an actual event. On a historic July day in 1996, all three of the mighty steamboats docked at Paducah at the same time. The painting commemorates that gathering as local townsfolks welcome the queens and passengers.
When the three sister steamboats – the Delta Queen, the Mississippi Queen and the American Queen – stopped cruising, Karen “Toots” Maloy not only lost her beloved job, she also lost a piece of her heart.
“I didn’t quit the Delta Queen and she didn’t quit me,” Toots said. “I thought the Delta Queen would outlast me, I really did.”
Cruise Trivia: Can you name the American Queen godmother? Hint: This godmother once lived in a graceful Memphis mansion.November 3, 2014 | Heidi
Choosing a godmother for a vessel is a great responsibility. When the boat is christened, that is the official start of the vessel’s life.
For the christening of the American Queen, the event in April 2012 was celebrating not only the new launch of the vessel but also the rebirth of the legendary riverboat. Built in 1995, the American Queen was once part of a trio of beautiful sisters. Originally owned by the Delta Queen Company, the American Queen – along with the Delta Queen and the Mississippi Queen – ruled the rivers. Devoted travelers eagerly awaited each year’s itineraries.
If you happen to see the American Queen cruising along one of America’s rivers, take a close look at that name beneath the big red paddlewheel.
Proudly posted on the back of the riverboat is the American Queen’s new homeport – Memphis, Tennessee.
If you’ve ever cruised on this vessel, you might have relaxed in this very spot and watched the sun set on a beautiful day.
For a bit of cruise ship trivia, see if you can recognize this popular vessel. Don’t look at the answer below until you have formulated yours.
When Lewis Hankins dons his white suit to take the stage as Mark Twain, he has a long- time routine. Before greeting his audience, Hankins says a simple prayer.
“I say, ‘David, this is for you. Daddy has never forgotten you.’”
How Hankins came to be on stage as his favorite author seems to be an act of destiny. The retired Kentucky state policeman grew up reading Twain’s works. He delved deeply into the life of the man born as Samuel Langhorne Clemens, who chose the pen name Mark Twain to become known as the father of American Literature.
Memphis – Now I know why Elvis loved them so much. I also know why he packed on so many pounds.
With the American Queen riverboat now based in Memphis, Tennessee, I have another good reason for visiting one of my favorite cities. I also make it a point to drop by Graceland whenever I’m in town.