The Streckfus family’s Admiral riverboat served as a mecca for social gatherings for generations of St. Louisans. Gracing the St. Louis riverfront from 1940 until 1978 with its distinctive art deco style, the boat took daily and nightly excursions on the Mississippi. On its five decks, patrons could partake in a variety of entertainment including ballroom dancing, a number of dining choices, arcade games, rock bands for teens, glamorous powder rooms and more. Its air-conditioned ballroom was one of the first in the area.
St. Louis firefighters try to determine the origin of smoke coming from the top of the Admiral riverboat in St. Louis on Jan. 22, 2011. Workers using cutting torches may have ignited old grease from a kitchen vent (UPI/Bill Greenblatt)