Showboat Facts

General Jackson Showboat

A Few Facts About the General Jackson Showboat


  • Name: "General Jackson," after the first steamboat to operate on the Cumberland River in 1817 which was named after General Andrew Jackson.
  • Launch Date: April 20, 1985
  • Built By: Jeffboat, Jeffersonville, Indiana
  • Christening: July 2, 1985
  • Capacity: 1,200 passengers, 157 crew
  • Length: 274 feet; 300 feet including gang plank
  • Beam: 63 feet, 6 inches (width)
  • Height: 55 feet, fixed: 77 feet to top of folding stacks
  • Draft: 7 feet
  • Engines: 2 Caterpillar 3512's; 1050 h.p. per engine; 880 kw generators
  • Motors: Two 600 h.p. General Electric motors turn the paddlewheel - 1,200 h.p. total
  • Speed: 13 mph top speed; 4-8 mph average speed
  • Paddlewheel: 36 feet long, 24 feet in diameter; weighs 36 tons
  • Fuel: #2 diesel fuel with a 15,000 and a 6,000 gallon tank; Consumes 35-65 gallons per hour
  • Weight: 1,489 tons dead weight
  • Bow Thruster: 200 h.p. prop
  • Search Light: Xenon bulb; 120 million candle power
  • Dock: 195' x 35' barge
  • Mooring Cell: Large cylinders on each end of the dock filled with sand and rock, topped with concrete and used to support and secure the barge/dock
  • Cumberland River: Navigable for 381 miles; Gaylord Opryland is at mile 197.5 average depth - 15 to 25 feet; normal (pool) level is 385 feet elevation. A round-trip to downtown and back is 14 miles. The headwaters are in Harlin County, Kentucky, and the mouth is at Smithland, KY where it joins the Ohio River.