For two hundred years the Ohio River has served as a main conduit for travel from Pittsburgh to Cincinnati, Louisville, and the Mississippi River. With the building of the first Mississippi packet steamboat in 1811 at Pittsburgh, commercial transportation of passengers and freight on the river began. By the Civil War, smaller versions of the great packet boats had penetrated most of the Ohio’s tributaries. Lumber, freight, passengers, cattle and harvested crops were all being moved by boat. The peak of passenger travel on steamboats was in the Victorian period of 1870 to 1900. As railroads were completed to Huntington, Wheeling, and Cincinnati, the packet boats arranged their schedules to connect with the passenger trains, thus allowing a passenger to travel to most cities in the Ohio and Mississippi basins with relative ease. Just as the train engines were powered by a coal-fired boiler, the packet steamboat was also steam driven. By the 1920’s as roads were improved and the automobile became more than just a novelty, the days of luxury travel by steamboat were numbered. Today the Ohio still enjoys river traffic, the bulk of which consists of diesel-powered towboats pushing coal barges, and the occasional river fan trip on the few true remaining steamboats.