The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Detroit Free Press (Detroit, MI), 15 Jun, 1868

Full Text

NEW STYLE OF PROPELLER. - A patent has been applied for which, it is claimed, will revolutionize the system of propulsion for steam. The inventor's plan of four iron air-tight cylinders, cone-shaped at the ends, which run the entire length of the boat. In these cylinders are shafts, on which are adjusted continuous screw threads, answering for buckets. These shafts can be made to turn by a light force of steam, a revolution of 700 times a minute will propel the boat at 35 miles an hour. The cylinders being hollow, their location below the water will assist in buoying the vessel. The invention meets in theory many of the defecits of side and stern wheel steamers. The great idea of the inventor is to concentrate power on speed. [Toledo Blade.

It is difficult to see how four shafts with continuous screws, revolving inside of four airtight immersed cylinders, can exercise any propulsive force. If the cylinders were open at each end, the action of a continuous screw within each one would create a current of water which, reacting at the stern of the boat, might create motive power, but in that case the bouyancy of the cylinders would be destroyed. [Buffalo Courier, 11th.

Media Type:
Item Type:
Anyone who has read the Tom Clancy book "The Hunt For Red October" will recognize the basic idea of this propulsion system. The original Toledo Blade article has an error in it, which is corrected in a followup article.
Date of Original:
15 Jun, 1868
Local identifier:
Language of Item:
Dave Swayze
Copyright Statement:
Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Detroit Free Press (Detroit, MI), 15 Jun, 1868