Oka ferry history showcased in book
The Hudson Oka Ferry service is celebrating its 100th birthday by launching a commemorative book. The celebratory tome that was written by Claude Léger, son of founder John Léger, will beonthemarket Friday.
The popular ferry service was started by John Léger in 1909, when there weren’t any cars totransport across the Ottawa River.
“He took people and the mail from one side to other,” said current owner Claude Desjardins, adding, “People in Okawanted to take the train to Montréal because to go to Montreal fromOkabyhorsewas a long ride.”
Desjardins said by 1925 the service was transporting horses and then cars and that the ferry was eventually enlarged.
“It was a flat tow-barge without any propulsion on it and there was a little tug boat that pulled the barge anddocked it in a special way,” Desjardins noted.
The system was retired last year and replaced with two refurbished 36.5 meterlong self-propelled ferries capable of carrying upto18cars at a time.
The old, smaller barges could accommodate 10cars each.
The HudsonOka Ferry 100th Anniversary book will be sold as of Dec. 18 at theHudson Historical Society, theGreenwood Centre for Living History and at Éditions Vaudreuil bookstore.
Self-propelled boats now transport up to 18cars at a time.
An old tow-barge system was replaced last year.