10:01 AM

Welcome Back to my Blog.....I've been doing some traveling and attended the Photo History symposium at the George Eastman House. 

While driving there the highway crosses the Erie Canal and I always wish I had worked in time to stop and get a closer look. There are many canals, not just the Erie Canal. Whether privately funded or supported by government grants or loans, these helped our country expand at a faster rate. 

These waterways were very important in transporting large quantities of goods and navigate around dangerous waters and elevate boats up hill, such as the one the Steamboat Arabia used which ran from Portland to Cincinnati around the Ohio River's falls. Arabia was a small enough to squeeze into the small locks which many side wheelers could not. The image below is from Erie Canal Wikipedia and shows a man opening a lock.

The above ambrotype in my collection shows a lesser known canal in Upper State New York. As you can see by the photo above, it had a boat supply store for groceries, dry goods and other needed items much like the stores along the St. Louis Levee. The canal boat in the image was pulled by mules and it must have been a sight to see Arabia waiting for its turn to go into the lock surrounded by these boats. You have to wonder if the noise from the stacks made the mules nervous.

Let's hope that I manage my time better and work in a extra few hours next time I head up that direction. I do have an open invite at the Strong Museum to see the Izannah Walker doll in their collection so I would like to find the time.

In the meantime, I have to get back to working on my book. Thank you for all the emails and encouragement that the Arabia is an important story and you believe there is a sufficeint audience out there. I do too!

I am never dishearted because it is very common to go thru lots of editors before one is willing to accept a proposal. If this was easy everyone would be doing a book. Since I blogged I received a wonderful letter from Wes Cowan who wrote:
Elizabeth, I would be remiss if I did not also thank YOU for your hospitality and your willingness to share with me your book proposal. The work you have done on the consignors to the Arabia is first rate! I marvel at how you came upon the credit records. What a gold mine of information. I urge you not to abandon your project, but complete the manuscript, find a good editor, and then resubmit it to the XXXXXX Press. It will make an invaluable contribution to the history of commerce on the Middle Missouri River, and provide the real "window" into the degree to which the emerging communities on the Plains were dependant upon merchants from the East.
Also, I received a upbeat email from Ellen Dunlap who is the President of the American Antiquarian Society. I sent her my book proposal with all the images I send the University Press and she wrote:
I have some ideas that I want to pursue and will get back to you just as soon as I can. The story is a fascinating one and I’ve loved every minute I’ve been able to spend with your write-up and the photos.
So, let me work on time management and make some more progress on my manuscript.