River Queen

The River Queen

The River Queen’s real name is the S.S. Shasta. And before being reduced to a floating restaurant and now little more then a floating hulk along the Columbia River, she was worked as a ferry in both San Francisco and Seattle. She was built in 1922 by the Six Minute Ferry Company, and purchased by the Southern Pacific Railway working across San Francisco Bay. The opening of the Golden Gate and Bay Bridges put her out of business.

She was brought up to Seattle in 1941 and worked a variety of routes to and from Seattle. Being a steam powered ferry though, she was an extremely smokey ship. This left her less then desirable, and the addition of newer sleeker ferries to the fleet in 1958 put her out of the ferry business in Seattle permanently.

The S.S. Shasta celebrated Oregon’s 1959 centennial in by working the Columbia River as the Centennial Queen. But as a pleasure ship she continued to loose money and was retired. A new owner converted her into the the floating restaurant, River Queen docked in Portland Oregon. As a restaurant she worked until 1995 and eventually made the Register of Historic Vessels.

Unfortunately that didn’t save the business and The River Queen was retired. She was moved to St. Helens, Oregon and then to Goble, Oregon. As of 2014 she is still waiting to be rescued and restored. No one has stepped forward, despite the owner’s offer to give the boat to anyone who can move it.

2 Responses to “River Queen

  • Does Rick have a last name? I need this information for citing this source for my book, The Lost Restaurants of Portland. Thanks.

    • My name is Rick Hamell, although I’d prefer the Blog name and address to be credited please

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