The National Achievement Award is the highest honor presented by the National Rivers Hall of Fame to those people who are making significant contributions to America’s waterways. The National Rivers Hall of Fame with members in 36 states is the only national museum telling the stories of the people of America’s rivers.
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Alan Bates designed the steamboat "Natchez" and is known as a steamboat expert on a global level. He served as first mate on the Belle for a number of years and received his master’s license. Alan was also chosen to convert the steamer "Avalon" into the "Belle of Louisville". He was one of the founders of the Howard Steamboat Museum, a member of the Model Railroad Club, the German American Club, Sons & Daughters of Pioneer Rivermen, and a columnist for the "Waterways Journal" in St. Louis, MO.
Alan authored a number of books on steamboating lore as well as sharing his own stories and memoirs of his own life and times.