Coal to Canada
A History of the Ontario Car Ferry Company
Ted Rafuse has captured the history of the rail car ferries Ontario No.1 and Ontario No.2 which operated out of Cobourg, Ontario, during the first half of the 20th century. The history of this marine operation--which transported both coal and passengers across Lake Ontario--is brought to life through the recollections of crew and passengers, more than one hundred photographs and company artifacts. The Buffalo Rochester & Pittsburgh Railway in the U.S. and the Grand Trunk Railway in Canada together created a marine operation to serve as a link between the two rail lines. Coal to Canada traces the story of shipping coal from western Pennsylvania mines to destinations throughout central Ontario. From the ferry slip at Genesee Dock, N.Y., hopper rail cars of coal were loaded onto the Company's two ferries and transported across the lake to the ferry apron at Cobourg, Ontario. The demand for railway and commercial coal kept Ontario No.1 and Ontario No.2 sailing across Lake Ontario daily and throughout the entire year. In the summer months hundreds of passengers boarded the ships for memorable daytime or moonlight excursions on Lake Ontario.

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