The Ferry Ruth
The Ferry Trimble
|“A new steam ferry-boat is being built to take the place of the horse-boats now used between this city and Milton, Ky. Very much needed.” Madison Daily Courier, June 21, 1849|
|The Trimble was built in Madison by Joseph Abbott in 1895. The primary goods carried across the the river to Indiana: peaches and locus posts.A few words on the new ferry.|
|The ferry at Milton, and the one at King's Ferry, a mile and a half below Milton, are authorized by the Legislature in 1880. Earlier statutes about the Milton ferry were from 1850 and 1861.|
|“Madison, January 10. – Capt. John M. Abbott,for thirty-eight years ferryman between this city and Milton, Ky.,died last night. He was aged eighty.” Indianapolis News, January 10, 1891. His obituary.|
|The ferry Trimble, in the ice, most likely winter of 1917-1918.|
October 31, 1927. The Trimble
has been stripped of her mechanicals and has been
relegated to wharf boat duty at Madison. The gas-powered sternwheeler Margaret S. (below)
has taken over ferry duties, and will serve until the opening of the bridge.
Joseph Abbott's earlier ferry was called
the J. C. Abbott, and was in
service from 1873 to 1894, when it was destroyed by fire.
This image from a painting by William Snyder
News of the fire.
A few general items on the J. C. Abbott.
The Trimble's enginer, Mike Stottlebower.
The Margaret J, c. 1930
The Margaret J Pushing
The Madison Courier used the story of the last day of the Margaret S
to publish a story of the history of the Milton ferry. Read it here.
The Hattie Brown leaves Madison
The Hattie ran daily between Madison, Carrollton, and Warsaw.
The General Pike (external
|The Steamboat Kentucky, near Milton|
City of Madison
|The Cincinnati, (external
link) in Milton
|The Delta Queen
Harland Hubbard's shanty boat
“A new steam ferry-boat is being built to take the place of the horse-boats
now used between this city and Milton, Ky. Very much needed.”
Madison Daily Courier, June 21, 1849
The Belle of Milton was an earlier ferry between Milton and Madison, but sank
in the ice on Christmas Eve, 1872. The Belle of Milton was preceded by the
Prairie Bird, and succeeded buy the J. C. Abbott. The Trimble followed the J. C. Abbott,
and the Trimble was followed briefly by the Margaret J.
|"J. R. Stuart & Co. contracted to-day with Captain Abbott, of Milton, Kentucky, for the construction of a new ferry-boat to ply between [Madison] and Milton, Ky. It is to be completed in ten days" Cincinnati Enquirer, October 23, 1872|
“The next morning we left Madison, the former metropolis of Indiana, with
interesting attractions, and crossed the river to Milton, Ky., on a ferry which
charges 5 cents from Indiana to Kentucky, and 10 cents from Kentucky to Indiana.
Milton is a small town of 500 people, and like its sister across the water,
is in the heart of one of the most famous peach belts in the world.” Excerpted
from a travel narrative in the Indianapolis News, September 3, 1897
On October 23, 1929 - 6 days before the stock market crash - President Herbert
Hoover visited Madison. The pictures below were all taken on that day. Note the
half built bridge across the Ohio, and Milton in the background.
|The Ottawa||The Kentucky||The Scioto|
The motor launch behind it is the Secret Service Boat
The story on the Hoover visit, and a brief description of the boats, are here.
Video of Hoover at Fernbank, back up the Ohio across from Boone County.