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From the age of 6, Stoll had jobs in the Stoll Oil Company offices. As a teen he went down to the dock to talk to the boat crews. He began writing for the Waterways Journal when he was fifteen. During WWII he became part of the Catfish Navy that took war craft from the builders’ yards to New Orleans. Included in these vessels was LST-1, which was built at Neville Island by Dravo. During the mid 1930s, C.W. worked as a clerk on the packet Gordon C. Greene.
C.W. was a member of the crew that brought the Delta Queen up the Ohio River to Pittsburgh to be rebuilt in 1947. The next year, he helped bring the boat to its new home in Cincinnati.
In the early 1960s he was appointed to the new Louisville-Jefferson County Recreation Board where he was responsible for getting the board to acquire the steamer Avalon at auction. He envisioned the boat becoming a Louisville attraction and landmark. Once the vessel was acquired and renamed Belle of Louisville, he was very much part of running the boat as a member of the crew and consultant. He also played the Belle’s calliope on several occasions.
C.W. later served on the Metropolitan Parks and Recreation Board and was a chairman of the board of the Belle of Louisville.
C.W. Stoll, who died in 2001, was a river renaissance man. He was a musician, businessman, civic leader and a patron of the arts, best known for his association with the Belle of Louisville.
Honored in 2002.
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