Why Marquette?

River barge Penny Eckstein towing along the Mississippi

At Marquette, we offer transportation that is:

Seamless Superior Safer Greener Affordable

Seamless Transportation

We make marine transportation simple.

Marquette Transportation Company is one of the nation’s largest providers of marine transportation services, having combined three leading family-owned businesses under one banner. Unlike most integrated barge lines, we offer a strategic mix of vessels along many waterways including:

  • Mississippi River
  • Ohio River
  • Illinois River
  • Tennessee River
  • Cumberland River
  • Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway
  • Arkansas River
  • Intracoastal Waterway (Brownsville, TX to St. Marks, FL)
  • Eastern Seaboard
  • Gulf of Mexico
  • Caribbean
  • Central America
  • Mexico

With integrated billing and tracking, regardless of your point of origin or final destination, there’s no need to hassle with coordinating multiple companies to get your cargo safely from Point A to Point B.

Superior Fleets

Modern vessels, cutting-edge technology.

Our River, Gulf-Inland and Offshore operations provide one of the nation’s newest, safest fleets. Together, we offer more than 120 marine vessels, ranging from 1,250 to 9,000 horsepower.

In addition to being equipped with the latest communications and safety technology, every one of our vessels is piloted certified and experienced wheelmen.

We transport dry and liquid cargos and we can also handle oversized equipment; with ten of our vessels powered for oilfield service and construction work, dredging support, and anchor-handling.

If it can be moved, we have the horsepower to get the job done.

Dry Cargo Liquid Cargo Specialty Cargo
Grains Fuel Products Riverboat Casinos
Aggregates (Sand, Gravel, Crushed Stone, Slag, etc.) Oil Products Construction Equipment
Feed Products Refined Gasoline Oilfield Structures & Equipment
Coal and Coke Refined Diesel Mining Vehicles
Fertilizer Jet Fuel Containers
Salt Pressurized Products (Butane, Propane, Butadiene, etc.) Generator Sets
Building Materials Petrochemicals Industrial Equipment
Pipe Agricultural Chemicals Military Equipment


Safer Transport

Keeping employees, vessels, and cargo safe is our top priority.

Protecting the safety, security, and health of our employees, our equipment, and our environment is vital to operating a world-class organization—and one reason Marquette is a leader in the marine transportation industry.

We offer an integrated program of classroom, simulator, and on-the-job training that stands as one of the more rigorous in the industry. While we conduct the required U.S. Coast Guard and American Waterways Operator (AWO) Responsible Carrier drills and training, we exceed these expectations with our internally developed safety, security, and environmental programs.

Our fleet is equipped with the latest in communication, information and navigational safety technologies; including Rosepoint Marine, electronic navigation and charting, Furuno radars, Automated Identification System (AIS) technologies, and Operator Incapacitation Rudder Monitoring Systems.

Additional Safety Credentials:

  • Member, AWO Inter-Regional Safety Committee
  • Member, USCG License Renewal Process Quality Action Team

Greener Alternatives

Green transportation. Better to the environment than rail and truck.

In an era of skyrocketing fuel costs and environmental concerns, more and more businesses are seeking cleaner, more affordable alternatives to semi trucks and rail cars.

Marine Transportation with Marquette is one of the best choices for moving virtually any type of cargo. Barge transport offers greater capacity to move more products and relieves congestion in other transportation modes, such as highway, air, and railroad. For example, a single barge can transport more cargo than 58 semi trucks or 15 jumbo hopper rail cars, reducing propulsion emissions by one-third or more.


The most cost-efficient way to move your cargo. 

Marine transport is more economical and efficient than transport by truck, rail, or air. On average, transporting bulk goods by water results in a 35 percent reduction in transportation costs.

According to the Gulf Intracoastal Canal Association, barges save shippers, suppliers, and customers over $7 billion annually:

  • Texas: $1.5 billion saved per year
  • Missouri: $14 million
  • Illinois: $45 million
  • Ohio: $29 million

In addition, savings in health-related costs likely exceed $1 billion for Ohio River barge traffic.

Marquette Transportation, in particular, is one of the cheapest options for moving bulk goods such as coal, sand, frac sand, rock, aggregate, and grain in addition to custom contract towing.

Get a Barge Quote

If you'd like a quote, or if you have questions about the current freight rate or the freight rate tariff, contact us