Freighters and other ships on the Rhine still make use of the fast current to travel downstream quickly. But how did they get back upstream - from Bonn to Mainz for example - in the days before motors, especially when conditions were not good for sailing?

Something physically stronger than the river, which could tow a boat, was required. Mighty horses were harnessed to the ships and pulled them along the bank. To keep the boat from being drawn to the bank, a special rudder was used. It made the ship turn diagonally toward the centre of the river. The force of the current against the side of the boat kept it away from the shore.
Canadian Heritage Information Network
Alexander Von Humboldt Schule, Canadian Museum of Civilization, Carl-Friedrich Gauß Schule, Confederation High School, Deutsachherren-Gymnasium, German Historical Museum, Gymnasium Isernhagen, Horton High School/Acadia University, Integrierte Gesamtschule Bonne-Beuel, Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) and Deutsche Telekom, Ananas Productions, Schule ans netz,

© 2009, CHIN-Canadian Heritage Information Network. All Rights Reserved.

Teachers' Centre Home Page | Find Learning Resources & Lesson Plans