First Modern Riverboat in U.S. History Nearly Ready to Sail
American Cruise Lines has announced that the first modern riverboat in U.S. history, American Song, is nearly complete. The vessel, being built by Chesapeake Shipbuilding, is set to sail her inaugural cruise October 6, 2018 on the Mississippi River from New Orleans—during the city’s Tri-centennial year.
She has five decks, accommodates 190 passengers and has 102 staterooms. The bow of American Song is designed to open, allowing a retractable rotating gangway to extend from the ship’s main deck directly to a river bank or dock. The new riverboat employs two Veth Propulsion Z-drives. These 360-degree azimuthing forward, and aft propellers give American Song flexibility for docking and maneuvering. American Song is also equipped with two advanced main engines from Caterpillar.
When she debuts this October, American Song will cruise the Line’s Lower Mississippi River itineraries for the remainder of the year (including American’s holiday-themed cruises throughout December) and reposition to the West Coast on the Columbia & Snake Rivers in 2019.
American Song’s sister ship, American Harmony, the second modern riverboat in the series, will be launched later this fall. She will go into service in the spring of 2019 on the Mississippi River where it will join two of American’s Victorian-style paddlewheelers, Queen of the Mississippi and America.