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A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE BEMUS POINT-STOW FERRY:
At Chautauqua Lakeís Narrowest Crossing of 968 feet, the Bemus Point-Stow Ferry Has Been operating since 1811. It all began in 1806 when William Bemus bought the land on Both sides of the narrows and he and his son used rowboats to get across the Water. In 1811, Thomas Bemus applied for a license to operate a flat bottom raft. The license was granted in the summer of 1811, at the Court of Common Pleas in Mayville, located at the north end of the lake. This was the first order of business on the first meeting of that court. At first oars and poles where used to propel the ferry. This was followed by the use of manila ropes stretched between the shores. A few years later, a series of pulleys and ropes were devised, powered by the use of horses on the shore. By 1887, steel cables were put into use. At this time, the ferry was still being cranked by hand. The first steam engine was installed by 1902, followed by the first gasoline engine six years later. In 1943, the ferry was purchased and operated by the Chautauqua County Highway Department. The first diesel engine was used in 1977. Since 1983, The Chautauqua Lake Historic Vessels Co., a non-profit corporation devoted to preserving Historic vessels on Chautauqua Lake, had owned and operated the Ferry. In October of 2006 The Sea Lion Project Ltd. was organized
Contact:
Sea Lion Project Ltd
C/O John Cheney
3510 Rte 430
Bemus Point, New York 14712
716-386-3065
bljcheney@windstream.net | Click to E-Mail Director of Vessels bikeusa1@gmail.com | Click to E-Mail Webmaster
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