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Mohawk River Ferries

Capital District History1

Hoffmans Ferry

Established by Harmanus Vedder in 1790 and called Vedder's Ferry until 1835, when bought by John Hoffman. The Hoffmans New York Central station and the lower slopes of Touareuna are seen in the distance.

Hofmans Ferriy

Did You Know?
Teams and automobiles were taken across on a large scow held on its course by ropes heading to a steel cable stretched across the river. In its last few years of operation the scow was hastened on its passage to and fro by the aid of a small gasoline motor-boat fastened to its side. The Lost World of Hoffmans Ferry (Hoxsie)

Google Aerial view of Railroad Station Remnants

Vischer Ferry

The site became known as Vischer's Ferry after Nicholas Vischer's son, Eldert Vischer, opened a rope ferry at the site in 1790. The ferry connected Ferry Drive on the north shore to Ferry Road on the opposite bank at Niska Isle.


No Historical Photo of the actual Vischer Ferry exists. This is a river view of the area.Mohawk River at Vischer Ferry

Did You Know?
A bridge built across the river at Vischer Ferry in 1900 was destroyed by ice in 1902. Later attempts to secure state funding for a bridge were unsuccessful. Vischer Ferry (Wikipedia)

Vischer Ferry Bridge 1901
Town of Clifton Park History Collection

Forts Ferry

There was once a ferry spanning the Mohawk River. It ran from near the end of present day Forts Ferry Road to the road which now runs through the Visitor Ferry Nature and Historic Preserve. The Fort family lived at the bend of today's Fort's Ferry Road opposite the Southwest corner of Shaker Bay. They operated the railway crossing and the Ferry which attached to a cable by pulleys and used the current to drive it across. Futher Info: Skaker Bay History


Forts Ferriy

Dunsbach Ferry

Cornelius Claes Vandenburgh established the Dunsbach Ferry around 1710. It was a rope ferry that connected an Indian trail that crossed the Mohawk River and headed north to Round Lake or east through Halfmoon to the Hudson River. The Dunsbachs also operated a hotel at the site which they sold with the ferry in 1873. Further info: Vandenburgh Dunsbach Ferry

Dunsbach Ferry

Did You Know?
The ferry was replaced for a short time by the Dunsbach Ferry Bridge, a bridge that had an unusual pier construction method involving cylinders with piles driven inside with heavy crib work outside. This bridge was constructed by the Dunsbach Ferry Bridge Company in 1898 in three spans, two were carried away by ice in 1903, and the third in 1905.
Dunsbach Ferry (Wikipedia)

The roll of rope from the Dunsbach rope ferry is visible in the left foreground
Dunsbach Bridge
Town of Clifton Park History Collection

1 - There's a really nice Facebook group where a few of these photos were brought to my attention. This compilation page was created as a service to non Facebook users. Fair Use Notice