P.E.I.'s Coastal Vessels and Ferries


Additional documentation added via transcriptions by Gary Carroll [GC] and ship information from Edison Horton [EH] and Wayne Folsom [WF]. Edison has also provided a number of the ship photos on this page. Please be patient as database loads.

Arrival Date M/D/Y

Ship

From

To

Details

03/06/1825

Packet Schooner Mary

 

Charlottetown/Pictou Mail Packet

PEI Register Fri., 3 June, 1825: The Packet Schr. Mary, will leave this Harbor for Pictou, with the Mail every Tuesday Evening. Has good accomodations for passengers, horses carriages and baggage. Passengers, &c.must be on board at 7 o'clock in the evening. Fare 10s. Apply to James Campbell. [GC]

03/28/1828

Pomona

 

Pictou/Charlottetown/Mirimachi Packet Service

Colonial Patriot (Pictou) Fri., 28 March, 1828 - PICTOU AND MIRAMICHI PACKET - THE schooner POMONA, formerly owned by Messrs. Mcdonalds, pilots, will sail for MIRAMICHI,on the opening of the navigation; and will coninue to run as a Packet between the above ports during the summer months, touching occasionally at Charlotte Town and Richibucto. For freight or Passage, apply to the subscribers. March 28. ROSS & PRIMROSE. [GC]

06/01/1830

Richard Smith

Capt. MacKenzie

Pictou/Charlottetown Packet Service

The "Richard Smith" launched by Geo Foster 19 Aug., 1829; her first master Capt. Mackenzie - Colonial Patriot(Pictou) Sat., 1 May, 1830 - Last week the Prince Edward Island Packet commenced plying between this port and the Island. She has excellent accomodations for passengers, and will continue to run regularly once a week, until the navigation closes in the fall. [GC]

05/12/1832

SS Ino

 

Charlottetown-Southport Ferry Service

 

05/11/1832

SS Pocahontas

Built Dartmouth, 1831

Charlottetown/Pictou Steam Packet

Schooner, Mentioned in the acts of the 1832 legislature in an act for the conveyance of the mails between Charlottetown and Pictou. £ 300 yearly provided for the purpose. Date of institution of service from Pg.21, Everyday & Extroardinary, Almanac of the History of Prince Edward Island", Boyde Beck and Edward MacDonald, P.E.I.M.H.F. More Info!

07/20/1836

SS Cape Breton

 

Charlottetown/Pictou
Charlottetown/Mirimachi
Pictou/Mirimachi Packet

More Info!

05/12/1838

Tremaine's Team Boat

Owned and operated by T. B. Tremain, Lower Queen St.

Charlottetown-Southport Ferry Service

"May 12, 1838:- The new Team Boat, intended to ply as a ferry between Charlottetown and the opposite side of the Hillsborough, came down the York River and up to the Wharf yesterday afternoon, inpelled by the power of three horses. She soon after commenced plying, and her performance, We understand has, so far, been satisfactory." - quote from unknown newspaper in Bremner's "An Island Scrap Book".

06/06/1840

Packet Schooner Rambler

 

Georgetown/Pictou Mail Packet

More Info!

08/17/1842

St. George

Built Liverpool- Owned by P. E. I. Steam Navigation Company

Charlottetown-Pictou Ferry Service

"Her maiden trip from Charlottetown to Pictou took place on August 17, 1842, and it is recorded as a "great success," she having left here at 9:30 a.m. arriving at Pictou at 3 p.m. - 5 1/2 hours from wharf to wharf." - From Bremner's "An Island Scrap Book", pgs. 118. See also Note 2.

05/06/1843

Charles

Owned by
William Hubbard

Charlottetown-Warren Farm Ferry

Colonial Herald Sat., 6 May, 1843, page 3: NEW FERRY BOAT - The Subscriber's new fast-sailing and substantial Boat CHARLES will ply between the Queen's Wharf and Warren Farm, every Wednesday and Saturday during the present Season. The CHARLES is twenty-six feet keel, is handsomely painted and well furnished with sails, oars, &c. and when not employed as above stated, will be placed at the disposal of parties of pleasure, or will be available for any other purpose for which she may be required, and for which the charges will be moderate. WILLIAM HUBBARD, Charlottetown, May 3, 1843. [GC]

09/14/1843

Mary

Thos. Burke, Master

Georgetown/Pictou Packet

From The Palladium, September 14, 1843: "Packet between Georgetown and Pictou-- the Schooner Mary, Thomas Burke, Master, sails from Georgetown for Pictou every Saturday evening and returns to Georgetown on each succeeding Monday morning. Being well found and having good accommodations, passengers for either of the above named places will be received.Fare, Seven shillings and sixpence.Georgetown, Sept. 14, 1843."

07/08/1845

S.S. Conqueror

 

Packet, Bedeque to Shediac

Royal Gazette 8 July, 1845: "PACKET BETWEEN BEDEQUE AND SHEDIAC. THE swift sailing Packet Dolphin, will leave Bedeque for Shediac every Thursday, and return every Monday from Shediac to Bedeque during the Summer, (wind and weather permitting.) FARES. - Gentlemen and Ladies' Cabin, each 7s.6d. Deck and forecastle 5s.0. Every attention will be paid to the comfort of the passengers by the subscriber. ANTHONY SIMPSON. Bedeque, 12th May, 1845." [GC]

03/06/1847

S.S. Conqueror

 

Iron Steam Packet, Pictou, Charlottetown, Bedeque, Shediac

Islander Sat., 6 March, 1847, page 3: "Steam! Steam! THE IRON STEAM PACKET "CONQUEROR", WILL run between PICTOU, CHARLOTTETOWN, BEDEQUE and SHEDIAC the ensuing season commencing as soon as the navigation is clear. This Boat is new, and propelled by two engines of 40 Horses power each. W.H & R.L. Scovil. Shediac, 1st March, 1847" [GC]

03/06/1847

Armada

 

Packet Schooner, Charlottetown/Mirimachi

Islander Sat., 6 March, 1847, page 3: "PACKET BETWEEN CHARLOTTETOWN AND MIRAMICHI. THE Subscriber intends running the fast sailing Schooner Armada between Charlottetown and Miramichi, once a fortnight, or in a shorter space of time, if required. She will be fitted up for the accomodation of Passengers, Luggage, &c. to commence running at the opening of the navigation. -- Terms moderate.Charlottetown, Feb. 26. CHARLES M'QUARRIE" [GC]

08/14/1847

Oregon

James Walsh
Master

Schooner, Bedeque/Shediac

Examiner Sat., 14 Aug., 1847, page 7. Packet between Bedeque & Shediac The Schooner Oregon, James Walsh, Master wll sail between the above named places leaving Bedeque every Thursday evening, and returning on Monday. Cabin passage,7s.6d. Forecastle, 5s., New Brunswick Currency. Bedeque, August 14th, 1847. [GC]

04/30/1852

Steamship Rose

 

Charlottetown/Pictou Mail Packet

More Info!

08/21/1856

SS Ora

Built 1856, Charlottetown, PEI.

Charlottetown-Southport Ferry Service

She had a length of 73', width of 77', gross tonnage 76, and was a paddle wheel steamer. Royal Gazette Thurs., 21 Aug., 1856, page 2: "Launched - On the 14th instant, at Charlottetown, from the shipyard of Messrs. Clement White & Co., a handsome little Steamboat, of about 90 tons, called the ORA, built for Mr. H.P. Welsh to ply the Hillsborough Ferry." Note: That while this vessel was constructed according to the article in 1956, it wasn't registered until 1857, and is registered as 76 tons. [GC]

06/09/1862

Steamship Experiment

 

Hillsborough River Service
Examiner Mon., 9 June, 1862, page 3: "The Steamboat "Experiment" late of New Brunswick, has taken the place of the Steamer Ino, on the Hillsborough River. She made her first trip up on Tuesday. The Experiment is a much larger boat than the Ino, has considerable more steam power. [GC]

09/29/1862

SS Heather Belle

Built by Wm. C. Bourke, Charlottetown, 1862 and launched from James Duncan's shipyard.

Charlottetown/Brush Wh./Halliday Wh./China Pt. Service

In 1861 tenders called for a vessel for the beforementioned service which were won by the P.E.I. Steam Navigation Co. The Heather Belle had a length of 119', width 19', and gross tonnage of 95. She was captained by Capt. Hugh MacLean. [S.A.S. database] Charlottetown Herald 19 April, 1871, page 3 - "The steamer Heather Belle made her first trip this season, to Mount Stewart Bridge, on the 11th inst. - also - Examiner 4 April, 1864, page 3: Steamer "HEATHER BELLE" WANTED, a person competent to act as STEWARD and BAR-KEEPER on board the above Steamer, for the ensuing season, on the route between Charlottetown, Brule and Pictou, -- no objections to let the Bar and Table and victualling the Crew by Contract. Apply at the office of John Ings. April 4, 1864 - also - Islander Fri., 3 Oct., 1862, page 3: "On Monday last a beautiful little steamboat named "The Heather Bell" was launched in fine style from the shipyard of James Duncan, Esq., of this City. She was modelled by Mr. Duncan, and built by Mr. James White, and is intended to ply on the Hillsborough, between Charlottetown and Mount Stewart. The "Heather Bell" both as respects model and workmanship is a very superior vessel, admirably adapted to the route on which she is about being placed. She draws, with engines, fuel &c. on board only three feet four inches of water. The machinery was manufactured expressly for this vessel by the eminent firm of Todd and McGregor, of Glasgow, and has been pronounced by W.H. Smith, Esq., Government Inspector of Steamboats for the port of St. John, N.B. (under whose superintendance it has been fitted up), second to none in the British Provinces. The engine is nominally forty, but actually one hundred and twenty horse power, and will, it is thought, ensure a speed of from twelve to fifteen knots an hour. We congratulate the inhabitants on both sides of the Hillsborough, amd the more distant portions of Kings County in particular, upon the vast improvement in the means of communication between those sections of the Island and the Capitol, now about to be effected. We trust, however, that the owners of the "Heather Bell" will have no cause to regret the heavy expenditure they have incurred, with the view of rendering the transit of goods and passengers on this route as speedy and agreeable as possible. - Mon. [We shall have some remarks to offer on the first trial trip of the above vessel, owned by mr. William C. Bourke, in our next number.] Isl" [GC].

11/02/1864

SS Commerce

 

Charlottetown/Boston

Charlottetown Herald Weds., 2 Nov., 1864, page 3: "BOSTON AND COLONIAL STEAMSHIP LINE - THE FINE SEA-GOING STEAMERS "Commerce" and "Franconia" until further notice, will leave BOSTON and CHARLOTTETOWN Every Monday (Weather permitting) touching at HALIFAX and CANSO. For Freight or Passage apply to FRANKLIN SNOW & CO.,4 Commercial Street, Boston; J.F. PHELAN, Halifax, or to I.C. Hall, Agent, Peakes Building, Water Street, Charlottetown, Nov. 2, 1864"

11/02/1864

SS Franconia

 

Charlottetown/Boston

Charlottetown Herald Weds., 2 Nov., 1864, page 3: "BOSTON AND COLONIAL STEAMSHIP LINE - THE FINE SEA-GOING STEAMERS "Commerce" and "Franconia" until further notice, will leave BOSTON and CHARLOTTETOWN Every Monday (Weather permitting) touching at HALIFAX and CANSO. For Freight or Passage apply to FRANKLIN SNOW & CO.,4 Commercial Street, Boston; J.F. PHELAN, Halifax, or to I.C. Hall, Agent, Peakes Building, Water Street, Charlottetown, Nov. 2, 1864"

00/00/1864

SS Princess of Wales

Built St. John, N.B., 1864.

Charlottetown/Pictou

In 1864, the Steam Navigation Company of P.E.I. was formed in Charlottetown, and the wooden paddle wheel steamer, Princess of Wales was placed on the Charlottetown/Pictou route. The P. of Wales had a length of 192', width 26', gross tonnage of 686, and reg. tonnage of 456. Registration was terminated in 1896 when she was broken up. P&P of P.E.I., pg. 109., and S.A.S. database.

04/06/1864

SS St. Lawrence

Ex: Blockade-Runner.

Summerside/Pt. du Chene

In 1864, the wooden paddle wheel steamer, St. Lawrence began on the Summerside/Pointe du Chene Route for the Steam Navigation Company of P.E.I. The St. Lawrence had a length of 202', width 30', gross tonnage of 675, 250 hp steam driven. Registration was terminated in 1896 when she was broken up. P&P of P.E.I., pg. 109., and S.A.S. database. Charlottetown Herald 12 April, 1871 - "Steamer "St. Lawrence" made her first trip of the season to Pictou on 6 April, and returned following day to Charlottetown." - [GC]

01/20/1872

Pathfinder

 

Rustico/Charlottetown

Semiweekly Patriot Sat., 20 Jan., 1872, page 3: "PACKET BETWEEN RUSTICO AND CHARLOTTETOWN THE undersigned intends running the sailing Packet, "Pathfinder", between the above places, touching at St. Peter's and Tracadie if required, commencing early in May, and continuing till the close of the Navigation, if sufficient encouragement meets the enterprise. As the vessel will carry about 600 Barrels and only draws 7 1/2 feet water, which renders her suitable for the North Shore Harbors, the undersigned trusts that an enterprise of this nature will be viewed favorably by the fishing establishments of Rustico, as they will have a regular communication established for conveying their Mackerel to Market and receive their supplies in return. John McKay, Master & Owner Stanley Bridge, New London, Jan. 12, 1872" - [GC]

00/00/1872

SS Elfin

Built by Joseph Fairchild, Georgetown, PEI.

Charlottetown-Rocky Point Ferry Service

The steamer, Elfin was built in Georgetown for Owner Daniel Gordon, Lemuel C. Owen, Andrew McDonald, Lewis John Westaway, Malcolm McDonald, and Michael Hessian. The Elfin had a length of 81 ft, width 22 ft., Gross tonnage 122, and Reg. tonnage 34. She was burned to the water line on Oct 08, 1906, at which time she was owned by the P.E.I. Government. [EH] - Daily Patriot Mon., 8 Jan., 1894, page 3; "One of the most novel sights we have seen for some time is the ferry steamer Elfin plying between here and Southport, conveying teams and passengers, while the more venture-some pedestrians walk over on the ice --- almost at her side." - also - Patriot 1 May, 1873, page 2: "The steamer Elfin arrived from Georgetown, on Monday last, and is receiving several accessory fittings to adapt her for plying on the Southport Ferry. She was fortunately engaged by the late government and a contract entered into, or perhaps the people on the south side of the river might have to put up with the inefficient and uncomfortable old Ora for some time to come. The Elfin is a great improvement on the Ora. She will take 18 horses and vehicles, and they cannot trespass on the places set apart for foot passengers. The seats are all under cover which will be a great protection to those persons who have to travel at all seasons. " [GC]

00/00/1874

SS Albert

 

Georgetown - Pictou Mail and Passenger Service

The SS Albert was tried in the Northumberland Strait service in the winter of 1874, and was replaced by the Northern Light [EH]

00/00/1875

SS Southport

Built 1874, John McKinnon, Summerside, PEI.

Charlottetown-Southport Ferry Service

The S. S. Southport was owned by Lemuel C. Owen. She had a length of 102', width of 27', gross tonnage 240, and registered tonnage of 186, and was a paddle wheel steamer. She was burned while setting off fireworks off Victoria Park during Old Home Week, 1905.

12/07/1876

SS Northern Light

Photo

Built E. W. Sewell, Levis, Quebec.

Georgetown - Pictou Mail and Passenger Service

Daily Patriot Mon., 5 June, 1893, page 3 BURNING UP - The old steamer Northern Light, which is being burned on the beach at Carleton was again set on fire yesterday, and is now almost destroyed. A large quantity of iron is being got from her by her purchasers, Messrs. E. Lantaluin & Co - St John Telegraph 3rd. [GC] The Northern Light, a wooden ship of 700 horsepower, was put into service this day and continued service on the run for 12 troubled years. 1st season, her steering gear gave way, and the 2nd, her propeller broke. She was known for being better at breaking the ice with her stern, rather than her bow. Bolger, "Canada's Smallest Province", pg. 234. [EH]
See: A Rescue from the Ice! | Passengers!

00/00/1878

S.S. Montague

Photo

Built 1878, Joseph Fairchild, Georgetown, P.E.I., owned by the Georgetown Ferry Co.

Georgetown/Lower Montague Service

Length 79 ft., Width 20 ft., Gross tonnage 130 Reg., tonnage 58, steam powered, 35 horsepower, Paddle wheel driven. Registration closed in 1937. [EH]

00/00/1879

S.S. Carroll

Boston, Mass/Chtn.

Charlottetown/Boston Steamer

"Patriot Sat., 5 June, 1880, page 2: THE ONLY DIRECT LINE TO BOSTON - STEAMERS, Carroll and Worcester. Both STEAMERS are fitted with superior PASSENGER ACCOMODATION, arranged for every convenience and comfort, and fitted up in elegant style. FREIGHT carried at moderate rates, and as low as by any other route. EGGS in boxes and barrels, handled with the greatest care. Leave Charlottetown EVERY THURSDAY, PUNCTUALLY At 5 P.M. Leave Boston EVERY SATURDAY, PUNCTUALLY At Noon CARVELL BROS., Ch'town, June 3, 1880 Agents." It is known that they were both on the route the previous summer to this ad. [GC]
1875 Pass. Lists | 1879 Pass. Lists
1880 Pass. Lists | 1881 Pass. Lists
1882 Pass. Lists | 1884 Pass. Lists
1885 Pass. Lists

00/00/1879

S.S. Worcester

Boston, Mass/Chtn

Charlottetown/Boston Steamer

"Patriot Sat., 5 June, 1880, page 2: THE ONLY DIRECT LINE TO BOSTON - STEAMERS, Carroll and Worcester. Both STEAMERS are fitted with superior PASSENGER ACCOMODATION, arranged for every convenience and comfort, and fitted up in elegant style. FREIGHT carried at moderate rates, and as low as by any other route. EGGS in boxes and barrels, handled with the greatest care. Leave Charlottetown EVERY THURSDAY, PUNCTUALLY At 5 P.M. Leave Boston EVERY SATURDAY, PUNCTUALLY At Noon CARVELL BROS., Ch'town, June 3, 1880 Agents." It is known that they were both on the route the previous summer to this ad. [GC]
1875 Pass. Lists | 1879 Pass. Lists
1880 Pass. Lists | 1881 Pass. Lists
1882 Pass. Lists | 1892 Pass. Lists

00/00/1886

SS Neptune

 

Georgetown - Pictou Mail and Passenger Service

The SS Neptune was tried in the Northumberland Strait service in 1886 and was soon withdrawn from service. [EH]

00/00/1887

SS Landsdowne

Built 1884, Maccan, N.S.

Georgetown - Pictou Mail and Passenger Service

Length 188 ft., Width 32 ft., Gross Tonnage 680, Reg. Tonnage 463 The SS Landsdowne was tried in the Northumberland Strait service in the winter of 1887, owned by the Minister of Marine and Fisheries, Ottawa. [EH]

12/18/1888

SS Stanley

Photo

Built Glasgow.

Dec. to Jan., Summerside - Cape Tormentine then the Georgetown - Pictou Mail and Passenger Service after the ice set in.

The Stanley, a high tensile steel vessel of 2,300 horsepower commenced its winter runs on the P.E.I. - mainland service. It was replaced in the service by the Earl Grey in 1909, but returned to the service when the Earl Grey and Minto were sold to Russia at the onset of WW1. Bolger, "Canada's Smallest Province", Page 245.

00/00/1888

SS Electra

Built 1887, Arcadia, N.S., Jeremiah Simms

Georgetown - Pictou Mail and Passenger Service

Length 85 ft., Width 16 ft., Gross Tonnage 107, Reg. Tonnage 63. The SS Electra was used on the Georgetown - Pictou Route during 1888/1907. Owned by the Three Rivers Steamship Co., Georgetown, P.E.I. In 1907, she was replaced on the Georgetown run by the newly built Steamer Enterprise (see below). The Electra was wrecked at the entrance of Margaree Harbour in 1911. [EH]

12/18/1889

SS Bayfield

Photo

Built Meadowside, G.B. 1889.

Gov't. Rum Running Patrol Cutter

Length 140ft., Width 24ft., Gross tonnage 276, Reg. tonnage 86. Was owned by the Dept. of Marine and Fisheries, Ottawa. [EH]

00/00/1891

SS Northumberland

Photo

Built 1891,
Newcastle upon Tyne, Eng.

Length 220ft. Width 33ft Gross tonnage 1255, Reg. Tonnage 519.

Owned by the Charlottetown Steam Navigation Co. Ltd. Burnt at Port Dalhousie, Ont. in 1949. [EH] Additional data: Name: Northumberland, Mills Number: 040470, Propulsion: Screw Propeller, Official Number: 96937, Dimensions: 220x 33 - 1255 tons, Built in: Newcastle, England, 1891, Closing Information Date Closed: 1949/06, Reason Closed: Burnt, Where Closed: Port Dalhousie, Ontario, Canada. Addendum: Northumberland; 220x33x20 Owned by Charlottetown Steam Navigation Co.; to Dominion Government; to Niagara St. Catharines & Toronto Navigation Co. 1920. Built by Wigham Richardson & Co., Newcastle England 1891. Engines (2) 171/2-271/2-46x33 (maker unknown). Northumberland Strait ferry, to Toronto-Port Dalhousie 1920. Chartered for service Palm Beach Fla. to Nassau winter 1895-96. Lower deck made available for passengers 1921. Destroyed by fire while fitting out 02/06/49 Port Dalhousie. Info from: The Marine Museum of the Great Lakes.

06/23/1893

SS May Queen

Built 1892, Charlottetown, PEI.

Charlottetown/Mt. Stewart Steamer

Weekly Examiner Friday, 23 June, 1893: THE MAY QUEEN - STEAMER MAY QUEEN, will ply between Charlottetown and Mount Stewart, calling at Gillis' Wharf every Tuesday and Friday, carrying Freight and Passengers. Apply on board. PAUL PAOLI [GC]

07/06/1894

SS Fastnet

 

Halifax/P.E.I. Steamer

Daily Patriot Fri., 6 July, 1894, page 4: THE S.S. FASTNET Sails every Saturday Evening at 4 p.m. FOR HALIFAX Calling at Hawkesbury, Arichat and Canso Returning leaves Halifax every WEDNESDAY EVENING at 6 o'clock making same calls. Through bills of Lading issued to all points in Great Britain and Continent at lowest rates.
W.W. CLARKE, Agent [GC]

07/23/1894

SS Hillsborough

Photo

Built 1894, Mt. Stewart, P.E.I.

Charlottetown/Southport

The SS Hillsborough was owned by the Gov't of P.E.I. She was used between Charlottetown and Southport prior to appx. 1907 when the Hillsborough Bridge was built. Length 105 ft, Width 25 ft, Gross tonnage 229, Reg. tonnage 75, 30 1/2 horsepower steam, paddle wheel driven. The Hillsborough was double ended - she had a helm at each end to ease navigation on the river. Her registration was closed in 1939.[EH] - also - Daily Examiner, Col 1, page 3, July 23, 1894: "Launched Steamer: the ferry steamer built at Mount Stewart for the Local Government by Mr Angus McDonald of Pisquid was launched on Saturday in the presence of a large number of people. Her length is 115 feet [variances in length, no doubt sue to differing measurement methods]; breadth of beam is 24 ft. 9 inches and depth of the hold is 8 ft, 2 inches. She is fastened with copper and galvanized iron and is sheathed with yellow metal up to 6 feet draft of water. Her boiler and engine will be put in by McKinnon and McLean." [CG]

07/12/1895

SS Olivette

Boston
Captain Hanlon

Charlottetown/Boston Route

Daily Patriot Sat., 6 July, 1895, page 1 - Ad for the fast steamship Olivette, Capt. Hanlon connecting Charlottetown and Boston [GC]
Pass. List 1895

07/12/1895

SS Campana

Quebec Steamship Co.
Montreal
Captain Baquet

Charlottetown/Montreal Route

The SS Miramichi made her final trip between Charlottetown and Montreal in 1895 and was replaced on that route by the SS Campana which was also owned by the Quebec Steamship Co. The Campana arr. in Charlottetown for the first time 12 July, 1895. Captain Baquet and the crew of the Miramichi took over the Campana. [GC]

07/25/1895

SS Jacques Cartier

 

Charlottetown/Crapaud

The Examiner Thurs., 25 July, 1895 - "STEAMER JACQUES CARTIER - During the month of July, tickets from Crapaud to Charlottetown and return will be issued for Sixty-five cents. These Tickets good to return on the Boat the day of issue or the following day. L.C. OWEN Charlottetown, June 28, 1893" [GC]

00/00/1896

SS Petrel

Built 1892, Owen Sound, Ont.

Summerside - Cape Tormentine Mail and Passenger Service

Length 116 ft., Width 22 ft., Gross Tonnage 192, Reg. Tonnage 98. The SS Petrel made 2 crossings on the Summerside route in 1896. Owned by Minister of Marine and Fisheries, Ottawa. [EH]

00/00/1899

SS Brant

Built 1899,
Charlottetown, P.E.I.

Fisheries/Dept. of Transport

Length 100ft, Width 19ft. Gross tonnage 142, Reg. tonnage 58. In 1906 was owned by the Minister of Marine and Fisheries, Ottawa, later was owned by the Dept. of Transport as a buoy and lighthouse supply ship. [EH]

05/27/1899

SS City of Ghent

Pickford & Black Line

Charlottetown/Halifax Route

Daily Patriot Sat., 27 May, 1899 - Ad for "Pickford & Black Line steamer "City of Ghent"; will sail from Charlottetown every Friday at 10 am for Halifax calling at Summerside, Port Hastings, Port Hawkesbury, Arichat, Canso, Isaac Harbour, Salmon River and Sheet Harbour; Returns from Halifax every Tuesday leaving Halifax at 6 pm." [GC]

06/05/1899

SS Halifax

Boston
Plant Line

Charlottetown/Boston Route

Daily Patriot 5 June 1899 - Ad for "Plant Line steamer "Halifax"; will leave Charlottetown for Boston every Friday at noon and leave Boston for Charlottetown every Tuesday at noon." [GC]

07/12/1899

SS La Grande Duchesse

Boston
Plant Line

Charlottetown/Boston Route

 

00/00/1899

SS Minto

Photo

Built 1899, Dundee, Scotland.

Dec. to Jan., Charlottetown - Pictou then the Georgetown - Pictou Mail and Passenger Service after the ice set in.

Length 225ft., Width 33ft., Gross tonnage 1090., Reg. tonnage 372. The Minto, joined the Stanley in providing winter runs on the P.E.I. - mainland service. At the onset of WW1, in 1915 the Earl Grey and the Minto were sold to Russia. Bolger, "Canada's Smallest Province", Page 246. She under went several name changes in Russia, at one time, the "Ivan Susanin" and in 1922 sank in the Arctic Sea. [EH] See also article Island Magazine, 1988.

00/00/1903

SS City of London

Built Kingston, Ont., 1888
Capt Thomas Craig.

Excursions and Charlottetown/Brush Wh./Halliday Wh./China Pt. Service

Length 120 ft, Width 27 ft, Gross tonnage 516, Reg tonnage 294. This vessel was leased from North American Transportation Co of Quebec City, and operated in this service for about 3 years. [EH] Capt. Craig and his wife, Katie Morrissey resided near Brush Wharf. - Daily Examiner Weds., 9 May, 1906, page 6: "THE S S City of London Until further notice will leave Steam Navigation Co's Wharf on Monday, for Belfast, Orwell, and Vernon River Bridge, according to tide. Tuesday and Wednesday at 3 pm for Belfast and Orwell; calls at China Point Friday. Thursday at 6 am and 3 pm for McEwen's Wharf and West River Bridge. Friday at 5.30 am and 3 pm for Hickey's, Haggarty's, and Hayden's Wharves, East River. Saturday at 3 pm for Crapaud. Further information on application to T J CRAIG Manager, Ch'town" [GC]

06/12/1906

SS Empress

Photo

Built 1906, Newcastle on Tyne, England.

Summerside, PEI to Shediac, N.B. till 1916.

Examiner 12 June, 1906, page 8 - "SS "Empress" Capt. Alex Cameron left Newcastle on Tyne 21 May & arr Charlottetown 12 June, 1906; built for Charlottetown Steam Navigation Co., accomodation for 500 passengers; 3500 horsepower; meant for the Summerside - Point du Chene route; there was an open house at Charlottetown on arrival and thousands toured the new ship." [GC] - also - Length 235 ft., width 34 ft., Gross Tonnage 1342, Registered Tonnage 612. After 1916, transferred to the Bay of Fundy Service. [EH]

00/00/1907

SS Enterprise

Photo

Constructed under contract by the New Burrell Johnson Iron Co., June 1907 with actual construction by Joseph McGill's Shipyard in Shelburne
More Info!

Georgetown, Murray Harbour, Murray River, Beach Pt. and Pictou, N.S. Service

The S.S. Enterprise was built in Shelburne, N.S. in June 1907 for the Three Rivers Steamship Co., Georgetown, P.E.I. Length 108 ft, width 25 ft , steam powered at 42 horsepower. Registered tonnage 98. Began service in 1907 between Georgetown, Murray Harbour, Murray River, Beach Pt. and Pictou, N.S. carrying passengers and freight. Remained in service until 1917. Was destroyed by fire on November 09, 1936 at St Peter's Cape Breton, N.S. [EH]

12/30/1909

SS Earl Grey

Photo

Built Furness, England.

Charlottetown - Pictou Service

Built in 1909. Length 250ft. Width 48ft. 6500 hp. The Icebreaker Earl Grey replaced the Stanley in 1909. At the onset of WW1, the Earl Grey and the Minto were sold to Russia, the Earl Grey renamed the "Fedor Litke", and serving Russia till 1959. Bolger, "Canada's Smallest Province", Page 254. [EH]

00/00/1909

SS Harland

Photo

Constructed under contract by the New Burrell Johnson Iron Co., June 1908 with actual construction by Joseph McGill's Shipyard in Shelburne. More Info!

Charlottetown, China Point, Brush Wharf (Orwell Cove), China Point, Halliday's Wharf (Eldon) Coastal Service

The Harland ran from 1909 and 1938 carrying passengers and cargo. She was owned by the Island Tug Co,. and first registered in Yarmouth, registry transferred to Charlottetown, 1908. Length 113 ft., width 27 ft. Twin engines, 33.3 horsepower each. In Nov., 1936 the SS Harland was sold to Straits Shipping & Construction Co. of Sydney, NS, the Bras D'or Lakes service. She was broken up in 1959, Big Harbour, N.S.

10/16/1917

SS Prince Edward Island

Photo

Built by Armstrong-Whitworth Co., Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England, and launched 10/05/1914

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service

For a short period, the 300 foot P.E.I. ran the Charlottetown-Pictou route, transferring with the Stanley to the new Cape Borden-Tormentine run in 1916. She was an effective ice breaker, and could carry 12 interprovincial rail cars. This was the institution of the car ferry service to P.E.I. Bolger, "Canada's Smallest Province", Page 245. Scrapped in Ontario in 1998. [WF]

00/00/1919

SS Hochelega

Photo

Built at Leith, Scotland, and launched 1900.

Charlottetown - Pictou

Length 192.6 ft, Width 27.6 ft, Gross Tons 628, Reg. Tons 427, 116 Horsepower, coal fired steam, single screw. In 1919, she was owned by the Naval Service, Ottawa, and was originally a German Yacht.The owner while operating here is believed to have been W. N. MacDonald of Sydney, N.S. The Hochelega started the Charlottetown/Pictou route some time after 1919, and residents of Rocky Point/Ft. Amherst remember seeing her pass each day.... She remained in service till the end of November, 1940, when she was sailed to Halifax to be scrapped. [EH] More Info!

00/00/1920

SS Scotia I

Photo

Built 1901, Walker - on - Tyne, England

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service

Length 254 ft., Width 46 ft., Gross tonnage 1461, Reg. tonnage 568. Was originally used on the Strait of Canso run, but was used for a while on the Borden run. The car ferry Scotia I, normally used on the Canso Strait was used to supplement the SS Prince Edward Island for some time. Bolger, "Canada's Smallest Province", Page 257. [EH]

05/07/1921

SS Constance

Built 1891, Owen Sound, Ont.

Charlottetown - Pictou

Length 115.6 ft., Width 19 ft., Gross tonnage 185, Reg. Tonnage 126. Ref: Headlines of the 1920's, the Guardian, Dec. 1999, Pg. 3. Owned by the Minister of Customs, Ottawa. [EH]

00/00/1922

SS Tustle

Built 1915, Lunenburg, N.S. by Smith & Rhuland

Georgetown - Pictou Mail and Passenger Service

Length 83 ft., Width 20 ft., Reg. Tonnage 48. The SS Tustle was used on the Georgetown - Pictou route in 1922/1923. Owned by West LeHavre Steamship Co. [EH]

05/23/1922

Gapesia

Photo

Clarke Steamship Co.

Montreal/Gaspé/Summerside/Charlottetown

The 1,014-ton GASPESIA entered service for the Clarke Steamship Co Ltd of Quebec on May 23, 1922, on a fortnightly run from Montreal to the Gaspé coast and Prince Edward Island, sailing from Montreal's Victoria Pier every second Tuesday at 4 pm. The 4 pm sailing time followed the precedent set by the Quebec Steamship Co's CAMPANA and CASCAPEDIA. The GASPESIA served both Summerside and Charlottetown, taking up the service that had been offered by the Quebec Steamship Co until five years earlier. In 1922, the first-class return fare in the GASPESIA was $70 for the 11-day round voyage from Montreal to Charlottetown, while from Quebec it was $60. The GASPESIA was scheduled for thirteen voyages in 1922, with a final departure from Montreal on November 7. The company started trading to Newfoundland in 1923, when it began to send the GASPESIA beyond Prince Edward Island. This extension to Newfoundland, still then a British colony, soon replaced the calls in Prince Edward Island, although the GASPESIA would return a few years later. The GASPESIA's itinerary was substantially changed in 1931, when she dropped calls at Paspébiac and Port Daniel in Chaleur Bay, and reinstated Charlottetown and Summerside. In 1930, it had been proposed to extend her route to Dalhousie, New Brunswick, but Prince Edward Island won out. In Charlottetown, Clarke's agent was Carvell Brothers. In 1933, her route was extended to Pictou and she served Charlottetown until 1937, when the 6,893-ton cruise liner NORTH STAR began to serve Charlottetown on cruises from Montreal. [Info from Kevin Griffin]

05/21/1931

SS Charlottetown

Photo 1
Photo 2
Built 1931
Lauzon, Quebec

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service

Built in 1931 at Lauzon, Quebec, the ice breaking car ferry, SS Charlottetown was operated by Canadian National Railways across Northumberland Strait between Borden, PEI and Tormentine, NB. Length overall 342 ft, Width 59 ft, Draft 191/2 ft. Accomodating 40 automobiles and 3 railway tracks accommodating 16 freight cars, First Class Restaurant on Board and News Stand. In 1931, the SS Prince Edward Island was retired, and the SS Charlottetown replaced her in the ferry service. The Charlottetown was wrecked on June 18, 1941 off the coast of Nova Scotia (Pt. Mouton), after striking a reef while on her way to an inspection under the command of master, John L. Read. Bolger, "Canada's Smallest Province", Page 245, and others.

12/12/1935

Fairview

Built by Capt. Charles Fitzgerald, Georgetown, P.E.I, launched Dec. 12, 1935.

Charlottetown/Rocky Point Ferry Service

Carried 12-15 cars. Service discontinued in 1958. Owned and operated by the P.E.I. Dept. of Highways. Length 115 ft x width 28 ft x draught 10 ft. Gross tonnage-227. Diesel powered. Ferry was sold and used as a construction barge after taken out of service as a ferry, now lies covered with fill at the Dept. of Transport's new wharf at Charlottetown, P.E.I. [EH]

00/00/1922

North Star

Photo

Clarke Steamship Co.

Montreal/Gaspé/Summerside/Charlottetown

The great Clarke ship that cruised into Charlottetown in the later 1930s was the NORTH STAR, formerly Canadian National Steamships' PRINCE HENRY. She was a three-funneled white cruise ship that ran from Miami to the West Indies in the winter time. [Info from Kevin Griffin]

00/00/1941

SS Prince Edward Island

Photo

Built by Armstrong-Whitworth Co., Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England, and launched 10/05/1914

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service

After the wrecking of the SS Charlottetown, the retired SS Prince Edward Island was brought back into service. She continued in service until 1969, earning the distinction of being P.E.I.'s longest running ferry. Bolger, "Canada's Smallest Province", Page 245.

06/28/1941

Prince Nova
(Formerly Erie Isle)

Photo
 

Wood Island - Caribou Ferry Service

Guardian 26 May, 1941 - Photo of "Erie Isle" Captain C. O. McGuire arr at Charlottetown from Montreal 24 May; "1st Strait crossing as "Prince Nova" under Captain John Dicks on 8 June, 1941". The Prince Nova made her 1st official crossing on 28 June, 1941 with a carrying capacity of 14 autos, was powered by two Fairbanks-Morse diesel engines, 240 horsepower each. Was taken out of service when the Lord Selkirk was put into service in 1958, later burned at the wharf in Pictou, N.S. on July 6, 1958, then was cut up for scrap. Prince Nova was formerly the "Erie Isle" and ran from Leamington, Ontario to Pelee Island in Lake Erie before coming into P.E.I. service. [EH]

00/00/1941

S. S. Charles A. Dunning
(Formerly S. S. Sankaty)

Photo
 

Wood Island - Caribou Ferry Service

The S.S. Sankaty, was also purchased by Northumberland Ferries in 1941 but before the company could get her into service she was requisitioned by the Canadian government and served during World War II as a minelayer, joining the Prince Nova on the run in 1946 as the S.S. Charles A. Dunning. The Dunning had a carrying capacity of 23 autos, 4 trucks. Powered by a steam triple expansion engine, 800 horsepower. [EH] The Dunning was retired and sold for scrap in 1964.

08/01/1947

MV Abegweit

(Link to Colin Love's Abby Web Site!)

Built Sorrel, Quebec, 1946

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service

In 1947, the 372 foot M.V. Abegweit joined the SS Prince Edward Island in the CN Marine run. It could carry 19 freight cars, and 69 automobiles, or 175 autos without railcars, and could serve 950 passengers. The Abeqweit was retired in 1982. Bolger, "Canada's Smallest Province", Page 245. This first Abegweit now serves as a club house for the Columbia Yacht Club in Chicago

00/00/1955

SS Scotia II

Photo

Built 1915, Newcastle - on - Tyne, England

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service

Length 287 ft., Gross tonnage 1854, Reg. tonnage 741. Coal fired, powered by 2 triple expansion steam engines. Used for carrying rail freight on the Strait of Canso run, after the Canso Causeway was completed in 1955 she was placed on the Borden/Cape Tormentine run. After serving there a number of years, she was sold, removed for service thn scrapped in Windsor, Ontario. [EH], [WF].

00/00/1958

MV Lord Selkirk

Photo

 

Northumberland Ferry Service, Wood Island - Caribou

From Postcard: M.V. LORD SELKIRK - Wood Islands, Prince Edward Island to Carribou, Nova Scotia, Ferry Service - Capacity 65 automobiles. Built 1958. Operated by Northumberland Ferries Ltd. Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island (Colour Photo courtesy Craswell Portrait Studio, Charlottetown, P.E.I., scan of card from Bryan Keddy.) The Lord Selkirk was introduced into the Northumberland service in 1958, replacing the Prince Nova. Callbeck, "The Cradle of Confederation", Page 161. After she was taken out of service on the run, she was sold to Panama. [EH]

00/00/1962

MV Confederation

Photo

Built
Halifax Shipyard Industries, Halifax, N.S.

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service till 1973 then Wood Island - Caribou

The MV Confederation, a summer vessel joined the Abeqweit in the CN Marine run. It could carry 60 automobiles. It retired on the Borden - Tormentine run in 1973 and was sent to the Wood Island Northumberland run for summer use. She was retired from the Northumberland service on 30 September, 1993. Following retirement, her name was removed, reverting to "Hull 28", the name used during her construction, and was replaced in October by the new vessel of the same name. The original was eventually was sold to a company in Quebec and nenamed the Nordik Passeur. [EH] 2004: Mothballed in Quebec. [WF].

00/00/1963

Prince Nova II

 

Northumberland Ferry Service, Wood Island - Caribou

The Prince Nova II was introduced into the Northumberland service in 1963. Bolger, "Canada's Smallest Province", Page 261. She is now the "Susan Anne" operated by Cross Sound Ferry, running between Orient Point, Long Island and New London Connecticut. She has been extensively renovated. This information thanks to Roger Neves of Truro.

10/11/1968

MV John Hamilton Gray
(now Contessa 1)

Photo

Marine Industries Limited, Sorel Quebec

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service

Guardian 12 Oct., 1968 - "M V John Hamilton Gray arrived 11 Oct., 1968 at DOT Wharf Charlottetown; inauguration 12 Oct., & open house for several days before it proceeded to Borden." [GC] - also - The MV John Hamilton Gray, a 400 foot icebreaker with a capacity of 516 passengers, 165 autos, 18 tractor trailers, joined the CN Marine run in 1968, and continued in service till its closing, June 1, 1997. Afterwards, she was sold, and refitted as a cruise and casino ship serving Florida and the Bahamas. She is now known as the Contessa 1. [EH] 2004: Sold for scrapping in India. [WF]

00/00/1969

MV Lucy Maud Montgomery
(formerly Stena Daninca, now Caribe 1)

Photo

Built 1965, Ateliers et Chantiers de la Seine-Maritime, Le Trait, France

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service till 1973, sold to CTMA, Souris/Magdalen Isl.

The Lucy Maud Montgomery, another summer vessel joined the Abeqweit in the run. She could hold 1000 passengers and 80 autos. She retired with the Confederation on the CN Marine Borden-Tormentine run in 1973. Later sold to the CTMA Group and operated on the Souris-Magdalen Isl. run, then sold again in 1998, refitted as a casino, now operating under the name of Caribe 1, in Florida.[EH]

00/00/1971

MV Holiday Island

Photo

Port Weller Drydocks, St. Catharine's, Ont.

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service

The Holiday Island, a sister ship to the Vacationland, joined the CN Marine run in 1971, with a capacity of 485 passengers, 155 autos, 16 tractor trailers, and serviced it until its closing, June 1, 1997. Now serving the Northumberland Ferries Wood Island - Caribou run.[EH]

00/00/1971

MV Vacationland

Photo

Port Weller Drydocks, St. Catharine's, Ont.

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service

The Vacationland, a sister ship to the Holiday Island, joined the CN Marine run in 1971, with a capacity of 485 passengers, 155 autos, 16 tractor trailers, and serviced it until its closing, June 1, 1997. Now serving the New Brunswick - Grand Manan run. 200: tied up in Sydport, N.S. [WF].

00/00/1972

MV Prince Edward

Photo

Pictou, N.S.

Northumberland Ferry Service, Wood Island - Caribou

From Postcard: M.V. PRINCE EDWARD - Ferry service between Wood Islands, Prince Edward Island and Caribou, Nova Scotia. Weighing 1,765 tons, capacity 60 automobiles, built in Pictou, N.S. in 1972, operated by Northumberland Ferries Ltd., Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada. (Photo J. P. Hermann, scan of card from Bryan Keddy). From News article: "The 60 car, 300 passenger new ferry is approximately the same size as the Lord Selkirk but weighs slightly heavier - approximately 1800 long tons. The extra weight is due to more equipment. It has an overall length of 249 feet and breadth of 55 1/2 feet; the load draft is 12 feet. The vessel has a wide range of navigational aids including a gyrocompass, two radars, an echo sounder, and two marine radios. Construction of the Prince Edward started in April of 1971 in the Pictou yards" - The Prince Edward was introduced into the Northumberland service in 1972. Bolger, "Canada's Smallest Province", Page 262. The M.V. Prince Edward was sold to the Newfoundland Govt. in 1997 and renamed the M.V. Capt. Earl W. Windsor, now used as a ferry on the Fogo Island, Chance Hbr run. [EH]

00/00/1982

MV Abegweit II

St. John Shipbuilding

Cape Borden - Tormentine Ferry Service

The Abegweit II replaced the original Abegweit in 1982, and continued in service until the closing of the run on June 1, 1997. It had the capacity to carry 974 passengers, 250 autos, 40 tractor trailers, or 20 rail cars. Was for sale at Sydport, N.S. but sold recently for scrapping in India. [WF]

10/00/1993

MV Confederation II

Photo

Built
Pictou Industries, Pictou, N.S.

Wood Island - Caribou Service

The new MV Confederation was introduced into the Northumberland service following the retirement of the original the month previous. [EH] Photo by Dave Hunter.

Note: Before the ferries ran to and from the Island, mail and passengers were carried by Ice Boats in the winter months, continuing well into the 20th century, until the arrival of reliable ice breaking with the introduction of the S.S. Prince Edward Island in 1917.
The ferries have been included in this database, as they were the principal means by which people travelled on, and off the Island in the 20th Century.

On June 1, 1997, the new 13 kilometer long Confederation Bridge opened, replacing the Marine Atlantic Borden-Tormentine ferry run. The plans for a bridge had their roots in a proposal made in 1885 by Senator George Howlan proposing a tunnel under the Northumberland Straits. Proposals for a bridge/tunnel resurfaced a number of times in the 20th century till 1987, when Ottawa called for proposals for the construction of a fixed crossing between P.E.I. and N.B. The contract with Strait Crossings Ltd. was signed Oct. 7, 1993, with the official opening of the new span June 1, 1997.

The Northumberland Ferry Service continues to operate from Wood Island to Caribou, Nova Scotia. One can now drive on the Island across the Confederation Bridge to Borden-Carleton, and leave on the Northumberland Ferry bound for Caribou, N.S. for a single fare.

Note 2: "On Saturday, April 16, 1842, an Act for the incorporation of the Prince Edward Island Steam Navigation Company was assented to by His Excellency, Sir Henry Vere Huntley, Lieut-Governor of the Province. This was probably the first Company of its kind established here for the conveyance of passengers, mails, and freight between the Island and the mainland. Previously to above date, a meeting of the shareholders had taken place in the Court House, when the draught of a bill for incorporation was approved.
The original Directors were:- James Peake, Hon. T. H. Haviland, sr., Hon. Capt. Swabey, Charles Young, Samuel Nelson, Andrew Duncan, Thomas Pethick, Joseph Pope, Charles Hensley.
The Steamer St. George for the Company arrived from Liverpool, early in August, 1842, and was, doubtless, the first P. E. Island owned passenger Steamer to ply between here and the Mainland. Her maiden trip from Charlottetown to Pictou took place on August 17, 1842, and it is recorded as a "great success," she having left here at 9:30 a.m. arriving at Pictou at 3 p.m. - 5 1/2 hours from wharf to wharf." - From Bremner's "An Island Scrap Book", pgs. 117/118.

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