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PS Wilhelm Tell (1908-1970) : Operating Area - Lake Luzern

PS Wilhelm Tell at her berth operating as a restaurant at Luzern - Photo 1999 by Gordon Stewart
It came as some surprise when it was announced that the 1908 built paddler, a near sister to Schiller, was to be withdrawn at the end of the 1970 season especially as she has undergone a major re-fit in 1968. The news did, however, lead to the establishment of a society for supporters of the paddle steamers, who instituted a vigorous campaign for her retention. The campaign was not successful in preserving Wilhelm Tell in operation, but it established a new appreciation of the value of these historical steamers in the minds of the public and the SGV, the operating company, which led to the operational preservation of the remaining five paddlers, which are expected to continue sailing long into the 21st century.

The future for Wilhelm Tell was not as bad it it may have seemed. She was sold to a restauranteur Mr Raber, and with machinery intact, she remains an immaculately maintained vessel, providing high quality cuisine at her prime location on the Luzern lakefront.

Built in 1908 by Sulzer at Winterthur
Engines : Compound diagonal :
750 /1120 mm x 1300 mm : 978 HP : by Sulzer (1908)
Length : 63 m

Entered service on August 17th, 1908
Converted to oil burning in the winter of 1949-1950.
Withdrawn : 1970

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Wilhelm Tell's main deck has been fitted out with a bar. Her engines are still in place

She is moored not far from the centre of Luzern

Wilhelm Tell's engines remain in situ : Photo by kind courtesy of Jack Woodhams


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Preserved Paddle Steamers
Lake Luzern Historical