Voices on the River relates two centuries of tales of famous steamboats and of the men who piloted them, from the renowned Mark Twain to the trailblazing Captain Henry Shreve. The book portrays roustabouts on the main deck, passengers in plush cabins, pilots at the big steering wheel, and government engineers at work in shifting channels. It shows Native American tribes carried to exile; soldiers transported to army posts; artists, scientists, and adventures on their way to wild country; immigrants thronging river landings where the inland cities rose. Voices on the River follows the frontier commerce up the Mississippi River and its two major tributaries, the Ohio and the Missouri. It tells of steamboat speed records, races, and disasters, and of the growing nation in the vast Midwest. This book gathers memories of a wide variety of Misissippi characters to provide an engrossing portrait of the expanse of river life. "A big book, well balanced in facts and colorful stories."