Next in line: The first steam ship of the company and the trade with Brazil in the turn of the XIX and XX centuries. To be published here in a couple of days.
"The great wave of European immigration that began around 1880 overlapped with the rise of major steamship lines that competed for immigrant fares. By 1900, the average price of a steerage ticket was about $30. Many immigrants traveled on prepaid tickets sent by relatives already in America; others bought tickets from the small army of traveling salesmen employed by the steamship lines. Before boarding their ship, emigrants went through a processing that included being bathed and "de-loused." Between 1845 and 1850, a devastating fungus destroyed Ireland's potato crop. During these years, starvation and related diseases claimed as many as a million lives, while perhaps twice that number of Irish immigrated — 500,000 of them to the United States, where they accounted for more than half of all immigrants in the 1840s. Between 1820 and 1975, 4.7 million Irish settled in America. In 2002, more than 34 million Americans considered themselves to be of Irish ancestry, making Irish Americans the country's second-largest ethnic group."
"Italian emigration was fueled by dire poverty. Life in Southern Italy, including the islands of Sicily and Sardinia, offered landless peasants little more than hardship, exploitation, and violence. Even the soil was poor, yielding little, while malnutrition and disease were widespread. By 1870, there were about 25,000 Italian immigrants in America, many of them Northern Italian refugees from the wars that accompanied the Risorgimento—the struggle for Italian unification and independence from foreign rule. Between around 1880 and 1924, more than four million Italians immigrated to the United States, half of them between 1900 and 1910 alone—the majority fleeing grinding rural poverty in Southern Italy and Sicily. Today, Americans of Italian ancestry are the nation's fifth-largest ethnic group."
"On Tuesday the Tapajoz
, a new iron vessel, just completed by Mr. Laird, for the Amazon Steam Navigation Company, sailed from Liverpool for Oporto. Portugal to take on board 300 Portuguese emigrants, who are to be located on the banks of the Amazon. The Tapajoz, built expressly for the Amazon navigation, is 200 feet long, 27 feet beam, 12 feet deep, and about 760 tons old measurement. She is fitted by Fawcett and Co. with a pair of engines of 200-horse power, feathering wheels, and all the latest improvements. The company for which the Tapajoz has been built has, it is stated, received a grant from the Brazilian Government of 30,000 pounds a year for the regular and efficient navigation of that river."
March 16, 1885, Daily Alta California, San Francisco, California, U.S.A.
"One of the most attractive countries for immigrants in these times is Brazil. When the Emperor opened the legislative bodies a short time ago, he delivered a speech in which he reviewed the condition of Brazil; and, in referring to the growth of the population, he spoke proudly of the fact that 131,000 immigrants had entered its ports last year, and said that this influx of population was favored by his Government. He told of the prosperity of Brazil, and of its industrial development, and of its educational advancement, and of the soundness of its finances. Altogether it is a hopeful state of things which the Emperor of Brazil describes without boasting, and he says that the Government will continue to promote the economic and social transformation now in progress there."
The Port of Rio Grande, located on the Rio Grande River in southern Brazil about eight miles from the mouth of the river, is the state's oldest city and one of the most important ports in Brazil. Built on a low-lying peninsula, it is little more than 1.5 meters above sea level. The mouth of the river was dredged to allow ocean-going vessels to dock in the Port of Rio Grande.
Its exports go primarily to other parts of Brazil and include beef jerky, hides, wool, tobacco, lard, wheat, rice, beans, and fish and shrimp. The city s industries include fisheries, canneries, meat-processing plants, textile mills, and a petroleum refinery and oil terminal.
It was the state capital for a time in the mid-1800s. Being the second busiest port in Brazil, it has become one of the richest cities in the state of Rio Grade do Sul."
New York Sun
"The Amazon Rubber Boom, 1879 to 1912, was an important part of the economic and social history of Brazil and Amazonian regions of neighboring countries, being related to the extraction and commercialization of rubber. Centered in the Amazon Basin, the boom resulted in a large expansion of European colonization in the area, attracting immigrant workers, generating wealth, causing cultural and social transformations, and wreaking havoc upon indigenous societies. It encouraged the growth of cities such as Manaus and Belém, capitals within the respective Brazilian states of Amazonas and Pará, among many other cities throughout the region like Itacoatiara, Rio Branco, Eirunepé, Marabá, Cruzeiro do Sul and Altamira; as well as the expansion of Iquitos in Peru and Cobija in Bolivia. The rubber boom occurred largely between 1879 and 1912."
In 1898, Burmester & Stavenhagen
entered an agreement with the five years earlier founded shipyard "Vulcan-Werft AG" at Bremen-Vegesack for eight steam ships for mixed use: mainly cargo in four holds (two front, two aft), but also simple accomodations for 22 to 36 passenger in the so-called "travel class" ("Reiseklasse") and some 120 to 400 steerage passenger in six berth cabins with common shared sanitary installations. The ships were to be made with gross tonnages between 3.000 and 5.000 tons and have an installed power by steam expansion engines (with either one or two shafts) allowing a travel speed of 12 knots. These ships were intended to cross the Atlantic in safe conditions, either linking German ports to North America, either to Brazi
The first of such ships was christened "Rio Madeira
" for one of the biggest affluents of the Amazon river, in Brazil. One of the destinations in Brazil was the port of the growing town of Manaus, the ships entering the basin of this mighty river taking mostly Portuguese immigrants to that area (Belém do Pará, Santarém, Óbidos, Boa Vista, Porto Alto, etc.) and loading for the return voyage timber and natural rubber.
This vessel had a length of 86 meter, a beam of 12,4 meter and a draft (at full load) of 9,4 meter. It had a gross tonnage of 2.826 tons and a propulsion made by a triple expansion steam engine delivering 1.360 shp on one shaft driving a four bladed screw. This ship could travel up the Amazon river and his main subsidiaries, rio Negro and rio Branco, where the main rubber plantations were working and also where timber was prepared for shipment.
was one of the ships of the company to stop at the Portuguese port of Leixões
, one of the main embarkment ports for Portuguese emigrants to Brazil. (Note: Emigrants with E because here it is referred to those leaving their homeland; Immigrants are thosse arriving at a new destination). It was also the main Portuguese port chosen by immigrants either returning home after some time in Brazil (to say it openly: When the slave trade ended), either to visit relatives when they could afford such a luxus...
got two identical sister ships: Rio Branco
and Rio Negro
. The other five ships to fulfill the order were bigger and will be treated here as well.
Worklist: Rio Araguaya
, flagship of its class (5.000 t steamer), followed by the Rio Tocantins
, the Rio Xingú
, Rio Putumayo
and finally the Rio Tigre