Phillip Pennywit

From FranaWiki

Phillip Pennywit was the master of several early steamboats serving Little Rock on the Arkansas River. He captained the Facility, Waverly, Arkansaw, and Neosho. The Facility made its maiden voyage up the Arkansas River in 1828.

Pennywit was born in Virginia and began a lifetime on the river plying the waters of the Mississippi between Cincinnati and New Orleans in a keelboat. He eventually commissioned the first steamboat ever built in Cincinnati, naming the vessel after the growing city.

In 1847 Pennywit became a leading merchant in Van Buren, Arkansas. He died in Little Rock in 1868.


  • John Hugh Reynolds, Makers of Arkansas History (Silver, Burdett and Company, 1905), 71-72.
  • Ira Don Richards, Story of a Rivertown: Little Rock in the Nineteenth Century (1969), 16.

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