When I was a little girl, one of our special family days would be to get on the Ferry Boat in Toronto Ontario and this boat would take us over to Center Island. This was such a fun day for us, and how I loved the Ferry Boat rides. Sometimes my cousin would come up to our place, his home was about 150 miles away from our home. His favorite thing when he got to our place, was to take me to Center Island. Hooray! I got to on the Ferry Boat again. Center Island was fun too. It had a lot of fun rides,and lots of food vendors with picnic tables, it was a great day every time we went. I think Center Island was my favorite thing in Toronto. The first time the Toronto Island Ferry took it’s first voyage was in 1833.
When I first moved to BC I moved to Vancouver Island. This was kind of a culture shock to me as I had Left Toronto and went to a tiny remote area on Vancouver Island. To get there I had to take a Seaplane ( that will be for a another story.) Once there I found out the only way to leave or return to the Island was either to take a Sea plane or the Ferries. My choice had always been the Ferry. I love standing outside on the deck feeling the wind upon my face, and seeing all the wonderful sights that you can only see from the outside deck, not sitting inside reading a magazine. The first BC Ferry ventured out in 1960.
Ferry Boats have been around for a very very long time. Some Ferry Boats will only carry passengers while some of them might carry both vehicles and passengers, while others might just carry cargo only.
In Greek mythology, it was said that the Ferryman by the name of Charon would take the Souls Of The Dead across the the River. His payment would be the coins that had been put in the mouth of the deceased. The Vikings would build their vessels to go back and forth across the oceans.
On some Ferries horses would be used to walk a treadmill which was attached to a paddle wheel.
(when I lived in Kelowna I would go on the Paddle Wheel Boat, it was always busy as it was a great party boat, but it was not driven by horses, it was motorized by the time I was old enough to go on it hahaha)
In 1822 the Ferry Boat was called a Horse Packet, in 1830 it was known as the Steam Barge, in 1867 the name changed again to the Steam Packet.
The picture above is the Needles Ferry, (taken in June 2019) The Needles Ferry has been in operation since 1913, it’s a nice little ride standing outside but it does get a pretty windy sometimes. Although unfortunately right now during the Covid 19 all Ferries in BC including the Needles Ferry requests that all passengers stay inside their vehicles, and all people walking on have to stay in a designated area, so no longer can we stand outside and feel the wind upon our faces, or see the wonderful sights that are in, on, or near the water.