Old Colony Steamboat Company stock certificate 1889
This great certificate has a fantastic vignette of steamship paddle wheeler with smaller sailboats nearby. Larger certificate measuring 9" by 13". Dated 1889.
The Old Colony Steamboat Company was chartered in April 1874 to operate freight and passenger steamers between Narragansett Bay and New York, N.Y. While controlled by the Old Colony Railroad, it operated independently. Boston, Newport & New York Steamboat Co. was sold to the Narragansett Steamboat Co. forming the Fall River Line in 1869 under Jim Fisk Jay Gould became President in 1872 Gould did not share his predecessor's fascination with steamboats and sold the Fall River Line to the Old Colony Railroad in 1874. This created the Old Colony Steamboat Company.
When the New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad leased the Old Colony Railroad in 1893 it gained control of the steamboat company. IN 1905 the New Haven Railroad's New England Navigation Company purchased the Old Colony Steamboat Company.
In 1889, the Thames River railroad drawbridge opened at New London, Connecticut, enabling direct, through rail service between Boston and New York City for the first time, marking the first serious threat to the existence of the Line. The affordability of the railroad and the onset of the mainstream automobile, as well as the creation of the Cape Cod Canal were also factors that the Line could not grow to withstand. After July 1937, the Line was no more. The remaining vessels (Plymouth, Priscilla, Providence and Commonwealth) fetched only 88,000 dollars when put up for sale. They were towed to Baltimore and were scrapped.