Official Number: 223916 Radio Call Sign: WB3893 Built: 1924 Length: 110' Beam: 36' Gross tonnage of 95.
Propulsion: 320 HP Atlas-Imperial diesel engine. Autho capacity: 20 cars Passenger capacity: 155
Cliff West snapped this photo of the Tourist #2 approaching the dock in the twilight years of the ferry system's run on the Columbia River.
Built in 1924, the Tourist No. 2 was a larger improvement on the Tourist No. 1 and worked th Astoria-Megler run quiet uneventfully until 1941. That year, after
the attack at Pearl Harbor, the little ferry was taken over by the U.S. Army. Painted gray, she commenced laying mines in the lower Columbia River as the
Her mine-laying duties completed, the Army used her in her intended purpose as a ferry, running between Fort Canby and Fort Stevens. At war's end, the
Army sold the Tourist 2 back to Elfving for $36,000. The State of Oregon took over the ferry in 1946.
After the Astoria Bridge was built, the ferry was moved from Oregon to Pierce County, Washington in 1967 and renamed the Islander. The ferry worked on
Puget Sound between Anderson Island, Ketron Island and the mainland for many years, but eventually it became too small for the route and the ferry was
retired and sold.
She was purchased by Argosy Cruises of Seattle in 1996 and extensively refurbished. Renamed the Kirkland, the ferry was a popular cruise vessel for Argosy.
Sadly, on 28 August 2010 an electrical fire was sparked below decks on the Kirkland. Though it was put out quickly, Argosy determined it would be too
expensive to repair the vessel, and the company decided to scrap the boat, ending her eighty-six year career.
Thankfully the boat was not scrapped. After spending several years in Everett, , the ferry has new owners and is moored in Bremerton. According to her new
owner, Christian Lint, after some clean up of the fire damage suffered several years back, the engines started right up. Lint plans to make the boat availble
for parties, weddings and other events. Damage from the fire has been repaired, and vessel is in good shape.
There are now efforts to return the ferry home to Astoria and turn it into a tourist attraction.
At left, , a postcard of the Tourist No. 2 working at Astoria.
At right, looking very much like a toy boat, the Islander, ex-Tourist No.2 is shown here in the days just before her retirement. Photo courtesy of Cliff West.
|The old Tourist # 2 sailing as the M/V Kirkland for Argosy. Photo Courtesy of Matt Masuoka.