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History of the Transbay Ferry

History of the Transbay Ferry 

Ferry service between Oakland and San Francisco has 
played a vital role for over 145 years. The earliest licensed 
operator was Captain Thomas Gray who started his stern-wheeler 
river boat, the "General Sutter", from a landing at the foot of Broadway 
in the Fall of 1851.As the demand for transport of mail, horses, wagons, 
passengers and cargo grew, so did the number of ferry boat services (many of 
"questionable reliability"). Ferry transit reached its peak in the 1930s and then declined 
due to bridge construction and the popularity of automobiles. Service between Oakland 
and San Francisco was discontinued in the the 1950's. The present Alameda/Oakland 
Ferry was launched in October 1989, following the Loma Prieta earthquake. 
A joint project of the Port of Oakland and the City of Alameda, the 
service carried its one millionth passenger in June 1994 and now 
serves over 340,000 passengers annually. The ferry began 
operations from the Clay Street ferry terminal in 1991. 
Donated by 
Summit Medical Center

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