I am grateful to Liam Kelly for sending me this photo of a steamer on the Shannon. He says that the photo is believed to show a steamer belonging to Lord Granard (Bernard Forbes, 8th Earl of Granard) passing through Lanesborough Bridge in 1900.
Here is a map showing Lanesborough and Castle Forbes.
And here is Castle Forbes shown in relation to Lough Forbes.
According to a programme reproduced on page 200 of Ruth Delany’s The Shannon Navigation (Lilliput Press, Dublin 2008), Lord Granard (Right Hon the Earl of Granard, KP, GCVO) was Commodore of the 1929 Lough Forbes Regatta, held under the auspices of the North Shannon Yacht Club Flag and the Motor Yacht Club of Ireland. Page 197 of the same work has a photo of a North Shannon Yacht Club regatta on Lough Boderg in 1903; it includes a large steam yacht, but with a white rather than a black hull.
The Fairy Queen
Page 181 of the same work has a photo of a passenger steamer, the Fairy Queen, one of the six operated by the Shannon Development Company, which was set up in 1897: the Fairy Queen and the Shannon Queen worked the confined waters of the Shannon above Athlone. The same photo of the Fairy Queen can be seen here.
To my eye, the steamer in the Lanesborough photo looks rather like the Fairy Queen, although I don’t think I could go so far as to suggest that they are one and the same. They’re shown from different angles and, anyway, similarities between steamers of the same era are to be expected. The reason I comment on the matter is that, while looking into the history of the Fairy Queen, I found that the invaluable Clydebuilt Ships Database had a photo of the 1893 Fairy Queen that served on the Shannon (not to be confused with her 1897 replacement). And, again to my eye, the Fairy Queen in the Scottish photo does not seem to be the same as that in the Irish photo. I would welcome other people’s comments on the matter.