Day 1: Hotel Stay - Louisville, KY
Enjoy your complimentary stay at the pre-cruise hotel. The evening is yours to become acquainted with the city. Our Hospitality Desk will be located in the hotel, and our friendly staff can assist with everything from general questions about your upcoming voyage to reserving premium experiences. Both American Queen Steamboat Company and local representatives will be readily available to provide you with dining, entertainment and sightseeing options to maximize your time here.
Day 2: Louisville, KY
This authentically quirky port is a muse to artisans of mixed mediums – from sidewalk chalk to street fare – and home to cultural diversity that quickly captivates the heart of its visitors. The local tradition that lives within images of Derby hats, Old-Fashioned cocktails and the 120-foot Louisville Slugger that towers over the friendly city is better lived than seen. Explore the red penguin-peppered Main Street. Embrace oddity. Experience Louisville.
INCLUDED SHORE EXCURSIONS
The Frazier History Museum
A world-class museum that provides an unforgettable journey through more than 1,000 years of history with ever-changing and interactive exhibits, daily performances by costumed interpreters and engaging special events and programs. The permanent collection includes items from across the globe, famous world leaders, and one of the country’s largest toy soldier displays. Explore all three floors of this expansive museum!
Mark Payton Glass Center
Visit this multi-use facility located in the heart of downtown Louisville that is dedicated to the art of glass. Tour the flame working and glassblowing studios and learn about the extensive variety of artistic glass working techniques through the demonstrating artists. “Be certain to mention your American Queen cabin number to receive a special surprise! Visit this glass blowing studio and tour the amazing techniques and artwork created by professional. The tour will pass by artists in action as they flamework, sculpt, cast, and blow glass. Make sure to stop in the gallery to explore finished products or the gift shop where you can purchase some unique and beautiful souvenirs. Or choose to be your own artist at the walk-in-workshop where you can flame your own art with the help of a professional, for a small fee.
Kentucky Peerless Distilling Company
After purchasing the Worsham Distillery in Henderson, Kentucky, in 1889, Henry K. Kraver founded the Peerless brand. He and his son-in-law, Roy Taylor Sr., ran the business together, producing about 8 barrels of rye whiskey bourbon per day. Production increased drastically by 1913, when the Kentucky Peerless Distilling Company employs 50 workers and pushes out 10,000 barrels per year. By 1917, the company was running at peak production, producing a staggering 200 barrels per day, more than 23,000 barrels a year, and 63,000 barrels in storage! But in this same year, the 18th Amendment was passed and the era of Prohibition moved in, closing the distillery. After that, the facility fell off the map until Kraver’s great grandson, Corky Taylor, and his son, Carson, bring back the family brand in Louisville, Kentucky, where it resides today!
The Kentucky Show! (Showtimes at 10AM, 11AM & 2PM)
Choose to spend some time at one of Louisville’s famous Kentucky Show! Located on West Main Street. Experience the people, sights, and sounds of the state in a high-definition production that will keep you just as entertained as you are informed. This multimedia show runs for 32-minutes and explores the ways Kentucky’s past, present, and choices for the future converge to create a unique and engaging destination.
The Seelbach Hotel is a historic hotel in Louisville, Kentucky, founded by Bavarian-born brothers Louis and Otto Seelbach. It opened in 1905 as the Seelbach Hotel, envisioned by the Seelbach Brothers to embody the old-world grandeur of European hotels in cities such as Vienna and Paris. To do so in early 20th century Louisville, they employed a French Renaissance design in constructing the hotel. e hotel was quickly regarded among the finest hotels in the United States and throughout its long history has been frequented by many notable Americans such as F. Scott Fitzgerald, who took inspiration from the Seelbach for a hotel used in the Great Gatsby. e hotel is part of the Hilton Hotels & Resorts chain. Trail Interactive exhibit!
Fourth Street Live!
Fourth Street Live began as a downtown revitalization project to redesign and modernize the former Louisville Galleria, a similar but unsuccessful project opened in the early 1980s with the same goals of revitalizing downtown. Fourth Street itself had long been the main shopping and entertainment destination in Downtown Louisville. Today, the 350,000-square-foot entertainment and retail complex is located on 4th Street, between Liberty and Muhammad Ali Boulevard, in Downtown Louisville, Kentucky. Restaurants and entertainment venues in the complex include Gordon Biersch Brewing Company, Hard Rock Cafe, T.G.I. Friday’s, Sully’s Irish Pub, The Sports & Social Club (bowling alley and restaurant),tavern on 4th street, The Fudgery, and the first-ever Maker’s Mark Bourbon House & Lounge.
Day 3: Madison, IN
Tucked away between Cincinnati and Louisville is Madison, a quaint river town rich in character. This charismatic port flaunts its personality throughout the streets, where a 130-block historic district showcases its collection of classic architectural artistry. Admire the antique machinery at the Schroeder House, or an example of fine craftsmanship at the Lanier Mansion State Historic Site. The downtown shopping district is a unique showcase of unbeatable hospitality, with each shop locally owned and operated. Madison’s heritage is woven into every stop, ensuring a glimpse of beauty and history. Join us to discover all the hidden treasures of Madison.
INCLUDED SHORE EXCURSIONS
Schroeder Saddletree Factory
This factory is America’s very last 19th century saddletree factory. For 94 years, workers at the Ben Schroeder Saddletree Company crafted tens of thousands of wooden frames for saddle makers throughout the United States and Latin America. It was the nation’s longest lasting, continually operated, family owned saddletree company. After his death, Ben’s family kept his dream alive by adding stirrups, hames for horse collars, clothespins, lawn furniture and even work gloves to their line of saddletrees. The factory closed in 1972 and was left completely intact.
One of Madison’s landmarks, the original Broadway Fountain stood in the middle of Broadway for almost 100 years before it was dismantled and replaced with the 1981 bronze copy or reproduction. The original Janes, Kirtland, and Company cast iron fountain was displayed at the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exposition. The only part of the original fountain that is still present in Fountain Park is a stone plinth that supported one of the original triton figures; it is set into the concrete at the south end of the central path as a base for a tablet that commemorates the replacement fountain.
Lanier Mansion State Historic Site
This Greek Revival style abode was built in 1844 and is often referred to as the “Crown Jewel of Madison’s Historic District. Tour this home adorned with historic architectural features and catch a breathtaking glimpse at the of Ohio River from the south portico beneath the colossal Corinthian columns. (only first floor is ADA, but guests have access to all 3 floors) Lanier Mansion is one of the best examples of Greek Revival architecture in the country and is considered to be the "Crown Jewel" of Madison’s Historic District. Designed by architect Francis Costigan, the mansion exhibits many original Greek Revival features including its square plan, the full façade porch on the south elevation, the Corinthian columns on the south portico, the Doric pilasters that appear on several locations on the exterior, the massive exterior entablature and dentilated cornice, the ornamental anthemia, the ornamental pediments over the windows and doors, and the Ionic columns that separate the double parlors on the first floor.
History Center and Railroad Museum
The History Center and Railroad Station Museum are owned and operated by the Jefferson County Historical Society. The History Center offers visitors a permanent exhibit gallery devoted to the history of Southern Indiana and the mid-Ohio Valley. It also contains a research library and archives. The Railroad Station Museum is a historic representation of an early 20th century passenger station. It features an octagonal waiting room that is two stories tall.
Jeremiah Sullivan House
Built in 1818 and considered Madison’s first mansion, this stately federal style structure was home to one of Madison’s most distinguished leaders, Jeremiah Sullivan. e house’s interior features most of the original woodwork and whitewashed plaster, as well as a full basement, an unusual feature in Madison during the mid-1800s.
Doctor Hutchings Office & Museum
The Dr. William D. Hutchings Office and Museum is one of the most authentic 19th century medical history restorations in the U.S. Built c. 1850 and originally used as a law office, Dr. Hutchings healed and comforted the sick here from 1878 until his death in 1903. Hundreds of the Dr. Hutchings medical records, surgical tools, books and other artifacts, including early electrical healing devices, fill the Office. Next door in the museum enjoy a sampling of Hutchings family treasures found in the Office when it was donated to Historic Madison, Inc. in 1968.
Day 4: Cincinnati, OH
Take a stroll through Cincinnati – the birthplace of baseball and its own distinctive chili recipe. The city is filled with downtown destinations that flaunt shops and amenities. Bound by the many parks; each district has its own personality, and you can meet them all – because the city’s compact downtown is anchored to the river, where our guests meet the shore. New hotspots and long-lasting classics give this oasis of commerce its colorful character. Seize the day in this old-fashioned urban jewel on the Ohio.
INCLUDED SHORE EXCURSIONS
This iconic fountain is in the heart of Cincinnati, Ohio. Located at the corner of Fifth and Vine Streets, Fountain Square is a public space where Cincinnatians gather, celebrate and connect as a city.
National Underground Railroad Freedom Center
This interactive center is a Smithsonian Institution affiliate, a museum of ideas, a site of conscience, a museum of American history, and museum of African American history. (Admission additional).
This greenhouse contains multiple floral plants, displayed in the palm house, desert house, the Hinkle Magnolia Garden including a bonsai and orchid displays. Krohn Conservatory was built in 1933 at the height of the Art Deco era. It’s what’s inside those aluminum and glass walls that make Krohn Conservatory truly special. You’d have to travel a good distance from Cincinnati to visit a rainforest or a desert – or come to Krohn Conservatory, Cincinnati Parks’ nationally recognized showcase of more than 3,500 plant species from around the world.
The Eden Park Observation Point
Here, you will view some landmarks within the park including a picturesque gazebo, where a breathtaking view of the city is offered to all of its visitors. This stop is the perfect place for those who love nature and scenery to hop-off.
Cincinnati Art Museum
This impressive museum harbors an unparalleled art collection consisting of more than 60,000 works, spanning over 6,000 years throughout history. It also hosts several national and international traveling exhibitions each year. Today, spend your afternoon exploring the art work from many talented artists from across the world.
Newport on the Levee
Take advantage of this centrally located stop, where many unique boutiques, restaurants, and attractions are within walking distance. Here, find the perfect souvenir to bring back home, grab a bite to eat for lunch, or just enjoy the stunning scenery around the beautiful city of Cincinnati, Ohio!
Reds Hall of Fame and Museum
A place where the story of Reds baseball comes alive each day. Explore the facility and all of its exhibits and discover the history of this iconic Ohio baseball team, including information about the Reds’ best players, historic games, and Hall of Famers. (Admission additional).
Day 5: Maysville, KY
Maysville’s heightened passion for diversity of art and live entertainment proves that as long there is a story to be told, it will flourish. A flick of fate’s baton sprung an ensemble of award-winning theaters, visual arts and historic landmarks that play harmony for the pace of life here. Its long-standing romance with opera – embodied in the 1889 Washington Opera House – serves as a heightened, multisensory means of introducing visitors to beautiful yet complicated truths about humanity. Join us as Maysville sets the stage for the traditional overtures and eccentric interludes of life.
INCLUDED SHORE EXCURSIONS
Floodwall River Murals
The Maysville Floodwall Mural project began in the summer of 1998. Artist Robert Dafford recreated Maysville’s early river history along the floodwalls, depicting some of the most important historical events. The murals move west from the Limestone entrance, chronologically illustrating four seasons and changes in Mayville’s growth. Other important themes such as the Bison Hunt, Limestone Landing, Lafayette’s Reception, Sutton’s Landing, the Underground Railroad, and Rosemary Clooney, and the Tobacco Scene are all depicted as well.
The Kentucky Gateway Museum
The Kentucky Gateway Museum Center educates visitors by offering dynamic collections, exhibits, and genealogical-historical library. They provide the stories of the Maysville regions as well as shedding light on the people and events of a seven-county area through a collection of books, manuscripts, and documents from the past 300 years.
The Opera House
The Washington Opera House had their first performance in September of 1797. A disastrous fire occurred in April, 1850, and destroyed a church that was then known as the Old Blue Church. The Church decided to relocate to another street, and in its place two fire companies and a theatre were built. The Opera House was opened February 12, 1885 with the presentation of ‘Fatinitza’ by the Amy Gordon Opera Company. The Opera House became the center of culture and the community, only to be struck by fire in January, 1898. Once the theatre was restored its name was changed to the Washington Opera House, after the fire company that rebuilt it.
The Russell Theatre was first erected by a well-known business man, Colonel J. Barbour Russell, who made his early fortune in the grocery business. He wanted to erect a movie palace as a philanthropic gesture to his hometown. In February 1929, Col. J. Barbour Russell announced he had let the contract for the erection of a handsome fireproof theatre on East Third Street to be call The Russell. This was envisioned at a time of great economic expansion in the United States, and it became a reality right at the start of the Great Depression when people needed to be transported away from the grim realities of poverty. For decades, Maysvillians enjoyed the movies at The Russell until 1983 where it was forced to close. It was used as many different types of businesses throughout the years but in 1995 a group of Maysville citizens started a grassroots fundraising campaign to save the Russell.
Visitors Welcome Tent
Stop off at the Visitors Welcome Tent, where a local representative will be available to answer any questions you may have regarding the city of Maysville! They can provide you with suggestions on events, attractions, and points of interest, or even help you plan the perfect day based on your interests!
Day 6: Point Pleasant, WV
Learn of river life, great floods, boat construction, sternwheel steamers, river disasters and the local river industry’s contribution to World War II at the Point Pleasant River Museum. Widely recognized for the 1967 collapse of the Silver Bridge, this sleepy river town became a focal point of paranormal enthusiasts in search of Mothman, a creature said to inhabit an abandoned TNT factory from World War II.
INCLUDED SHORE EXCURSIONS
Tu-Endie-Wei State Park
Located on 4 acres at the confluence of the Ohio and Kanawha Rivers, Tu-Endie-Wei State Park means “point between two rivers” in the Wyandotte language. Inside the park is an 84-foot granite monument that commemorates the frontiersmen that lost their lives in the Battle of Point Pleasant. The park also features the Mansion House Museum, which is the oldest and largest log cabin in the Kanawha Valley. It was used as a tavern for many weary frontiersmen, including Daniel Boone and Simon Kenton.
Fort Randolph is a replica of the original Fort that stood at the confluence of the Ohio and Kanawha Rivers. Built in 1776, it was protection for the settlers and soldiers from the native tribes. Chief Cornstalk was murdered there and Fort Randolph withstood a siege by the Shawnee and Mingo tribes in retaliation. The Fort features reenactors demonstrating life skills from the 1700s and includes an Officers Cabin, Surveyors Cabin, Blacksmith Shop, Wood Wright/Gun Smith Shop and Hogg’s Tavern. A Trading Post for period souvenirs is also located within the Fort. Available upon request is 1700s period clothing for guests to join the Fort reenactors for the day.
Explore the world’s only Mothman Museum, which showcases all the information the small town of Point Pleasant has on the mysterious creature that started terrorizing the town in November of 1966. Read rare historical documents from Mothman eyewitnesses relating their encounters with the monster. View the documentaries, television shows and feature films about Point Pleasant and the Mothman in the Museum Film Room. See why Point Pleasant is the most filmed town in West Virginia. Uncover the truth for yourself!!
Riverfront Park Murals & Tram Tour
The Point Pleasant Riverfront Park not only showcases a gorgeous river view and outdoor amphitheater, but also features artistic “living history” lessons with floodwall murals. Created by artist Robert Dafford, the murals bring local history to life in the form of breathtaking art. Measuring 260 feet long and 15 feet high, the scenes depict many events including the Battle of Point Pleasant. The Riverfront Park Tram Tour takes 30 passengers on a 30-minute tour of 5 local history lessons in high tech sound. The tour also includes the historical stainless-steel statues of Mason County artist Bob Roach.
Day 7: Marietta, OH
Marietta vaunts a stout mix of museums, walking tours and historic sites to broaden the landscape of the mind. Take part in a farmers’ market and ghost stories alike as you wander the town. Shaded, hand-laid brick streets pervade its charm, and fringing them are dollhouse homes featuring stained glass, intricate woodwork, lofty towers and ornate turrets. All that and more plays a vital role in the visual and spiritual pleasantries of this place. The past fuels the present, keeping pace and pushing forward with the same gusto as the paddlewheel.
INCLUDED SHORE EXCURSIONS
The Mound Cemetery was developed around the base of a prehistoric Adena burial mound known as the Great Mound or Conus in order to preserve it from destruction. In its early years, the Mound Cemetery saw the burial of more than twenty-five Revolutionary War soldiers and has the highest number of burials of officers in the country.
The Castle was the home of some of Marietta’s most prominent and influential citizens and was the site of grand business, community and family functions throughout Marietta’s history. Only a total of five familys have lived on the property between 1808 and 1974 and was later donated to the Betsey Mills Corporation who completed repairs and opened it for tours in 1994. Tour this historical house museum furnished with antiques from the Bosley family and the historical furniture from the other Marietta families who resided in the home.
Campus Martius Museum
Campus Martius Museum was built on the site of the original stockade, built by the Ohio Company between 1788 and 1791. Known by the early settlers as the stockade or Campus Martius, the original fortification was built to house and protect the members of the Ohio Company during the Ohio Indian Wars of 1790 to 1794. By 1795, after the signing of the Treaty of Greeneville, the stockade was no longer necessary and torn down. In 1953, the Ohio Historical Society restored the museum and moved it to the present site of the Ohio Company Land Office. Explore the many exhibits including the Ohio’s First Peoples, Marietta Pioneers and Fort Harmar.
Ohio River Museum
This museum features exhibits recounting the history of the Ohio River and the many different types of boats that have been transporting people and cargo for hundreds of years. Three buildings of exhibits focus on the history of the Ohio River and its importance relating to the expansion of our country. The Golden Age of the steamboat recalls the romance and luxury as many people traveled the river in style. The pride of the museum is the W.P. Snyder, Jr., the last of the steam-powered, stern wheeled towboats in the United States and a National Historic Landmark. Docked on the Muskingum River and open for guided tours since 1955, the Snyder takes visitors back to a different era of work boats on the river.
Children’s Toy & Doll Museum
Located in the historic Harmar Village of Marietta, this museum features unique dollhouses, teddy bears, dolls, games, stores and offices furnished to their respective periods. They also have antique metal banks and a reproduction carousel horse that represents a gentler time of county fairs on summer nights. Take a step back into the past.
The Henry Fearing House Museum
The Henry Fearing House was built in 1847 for Henry Fearing, a successful business man who owned and developed property along with interest in a steamboat. He later donated the land for a Woman’s Home. This museum provides a glimpse of what life was like in Marietta during the 19th century and houses a large collection of artifacts from the era.
Day 8: River Cruising
Watch small river towns and lush landscapes slowly become lost in the horizon as sunlight plays upon the deck. Take hold of a literary classic, curl up on a plush chair in a cozy corner and relish in the moment of tranquility. Experience the fulfillment that river cruising offers.
Day 9: Pittsburgh, PA
Pittsburgh is located at the confluence of three rivers. At one time a trading camp, it grew into a major manufacturing center, and served as the jumping-off point for the golden age of steamboat travel. Its Gilded Age sites, including the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, the Carnegie Museum of Art and the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, speak to its history as an early-20th-century industrial capital.