Darby Davis and wife Mae (Island Queen in the background)

Dublin Core


Darby Davis and wife Mae (Island Queen in the background)


People; Steamboats; Waterfronts


Darby Davis and his wife, Mae are shown relaxing along the Ohio as the Island Queen floats by. Darby Davis was born in Carroll County, Kentucky in 1886. In his younger days he was a blacksmith and boat tender, and in later years worked in the tobacco houses and as a fisherman. The couple lived on a little "houseboat" on the river. Darby died in 1955 and Mae followed a few years later. It is said the children of the town loved Darby and Mae. They were part of the colorful river characters along the Ohio.

The Island Queen was built as an excursion boat for duty, primarily, around the Coney Island Amusement Park (later King's Island) in Cincinnati. She also plied up and down the Ohio and in 1937 the Madison Courier declared in an advertisement, "The palatial glass-enclosed steamer Island Queen will pay a return visit to Madison, Ind. on Sunday night October 17, to stage another of its popular Moonlight dance excursions." At that time, Bob Sidell and his Kentucky Swingsters provided the dance tunes and Sidell also doubled on the boat's massive calliope. The Island Queen exploded in Pittsburg in 1954 killing 19.


Harry Lemen, photographer


Madison Courier


Picture taken 1930


Madison-Jefferson County Public Library


Permission to reproduce this image for other than personal use must be requested from the Director of the Madison-Jefferson County Public Library. Please contact at 420 W. Main Street Madison, IN 47250

(812) 265-2744


Photograph taken with Eastman-Kodak Brownie Camera No. 2C model A, using No. 130 film. Resulting negative (2.875in x 4.875in) scanned at 1200 DPI using a Microtek ScanMaker 9800XL. Online jpeg image file saved at 72 DPI 800 to 1000 pixels on long edge.


Still image



Contribution Form

Additional Item Metadata




Harry Lemen, photographer , "Darby Davis and wife Mae (Island Queen in the background)," in Harry Lemen Historic Photo Collection, Item #204, http://www.mjcpl.org/photos/items/show/204 (accessed May 27, 2015).