E. Lee was built in 1866 for the princely sum of $200,000. Nicknamed
the "Monarch of the Mississippi," this luxurious side-wheeler is most widely
remembered for winning the famous steamboat race in 1870 against the Natchez
VI, traveling down-river from St. Louis, Missouri to New Orleans,
Louisiana, a distance of 1,003 nautical miles in a bit over 90 hours (3
days, 18 hours and 14 minutes). That indicates an average of about
11 knots, allowing for stops to refuel alongside pre-arranged barges in
mid-river -- delays which would have been partially offset by the 'down
As depicted in this painting by August Norieri, one might
surmise the vessel to be commanded "All Ahead Full" making good its fastest
speed on the return trip 'up hill' against the river's current.
decades ago, "carbon footprint" was not considered an issue. If it
were, 'sustainability' would have taken precedence over performance.
Suppose that the river was flowing 'down-hill' at four knots.
Applying 'green' criteria, the steamboat would have been commanded to paddle
its way 'up-hill' at what speed?
[a] five knots
[b] six knots
[c] seven knots
[d] eight knots
GO TO SOLUTION PAGE
For solvers who care, "Steamboat
Hill" is merely a rhyming pun on the title Steamboat
Bill, a 1928 silent film, featuring Buster
Keaton and presently available for viewing in its entirety at the Internet