Fate of USCGC Willow

28th August 2010, 05:27
So, i'm trying to piece together a history of the fates of various vessels of the United States Coast Guard, and among them is the 1927-built sidewheel river tender Willow, WAGL-253. (Picture here: http://www.uscg.mil/history/WEBCUTTERS/img/Tender_11.jpg)

After being decommissioned, she was transferred to the Army Corps of Engineers in 1944. From there, apparently she made her way to London, UK, where she was placed on display as "an American showboat."

However, I have managed to find little more than obscure references to this fate, so I was hoping someone would be able to clue me into whether or not she still resides in London, and if not, what eventually happened to her. Other sources i've seen say that she is instead in Harvey, Louisiana.

Whatever her fate, I'd love to find out her current status, and if possible, see a picture of her as she is now.

29th August 2010, 21:18
It seems that the article stating her location in Louisiana appears to be dated, the most up-to-date article I've managed to find states the following:

"She was sold into private hands in 1962. In 1971 she was overhauled for use as a lobster factory in British Honduras but apparently that deal fell through. She eventually ended up in Belgium and was renovated in 1990. By 1999 she was on display in London, England."

Don Matheson
29th August 2010, 21:48
I am sure some of the lads from around London may tell you otherwise but I dont ever remember seeing (or reading about ) anything like her in the London River.
Have seen quite a few in the US so I think this would have stood out.
Hope you find her complete history.


30th August 2010, 02:26

Thanks for the response. The hardest part of this search is that under the Army Corps of Engineers, she underwent a large number of drastic modifications, so she likely looks nothing like the photo of her serving the Coast Guard.

The only lead I have is reading at one point that she is on display as an example of a typical "American showboat."

27th March 2013, 02:00
The pictures of the USCGC Willow are at this web-site: