The Steamer Columbia - A New Discovery in the Blackwater

Author(s): Christopher K Dvorscak

Year: 2017


As the University of West Florida continues to survey Pensacola waterways, many new anomalies have been discovered.  One of the most significant is a 105’ long sidewheel steamer, which was located in the Blackwater River using side-scan sonar.  The shipwreck’s three distinct sections – the bow, boiler, and propulsion-related machinery in the stern – remain mostly intact.  The most indicative of the artifacts examined are bricks associated with the boiler that have the name "KILLIAN" impressed on them.  After further historical research, the wreck is believed to be the Columbia.  Built in Pensacola in 1900, she was used by the W.B. Wright Lumber Company and also operated as an excursion vessel. A fire of unknown origin caused her to sink in 1911.  This project focuses on the life history of the Columbia, why she was built, how she sank, and the role she played in the economy of the region.

Cite this Record

The Steamer Columbia - A New Discovery in the Blackwater. Christopher K Dvorscak. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Fort Worth, TX. 2017 ( tDAR id: 435511)

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Temporal Keywords
Early 20th Century

Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 636