Rail Car Ferry Michigan Central on the Detroit River

Car ferry, Michigan Central, entering slip, Detroit River, photo by Detroit Publishing Co.

It’s kind of cruel to post a photo like this while it’s still November. I think we all know what’s coming though…

I spent some time learning about this photo I found in the Library of Congress aka maybe the coolest place on the internet. (You probably paid 3 cents for it last year, so check it out sometime). I finally found the same photo on the fantastic photo blog Shorpy. One of the commentors writes:

This is the Detroit side. The river flows extremely fast, and the ferry docks were set up so the boats always entered dock facing upstream. Michigan Central was built in 1884 by Detroit Dry Dock in Wyandotte, while Transport was built there in 1880. Both were cut down to barges by the 1930’s. A nearly identical boat, Lansdowne of 1884, survived in steam until 1970 for CN/Grand Trunk, until she blew a cylinder head (I remember the shock among the Detroit trainwatching community at the time).

You can see the Lansdowne of Windsor on Michigan in Pictures and check the comments at Shorpy for more including a shot of this location from the Ambassador Bridge in 1957.

See the photo background bigtacular at Shorpy.

2 thoughts on “Rail Car Ferry Michigan Central on the Detroit River

  1. Ah, beautiful. And dramatic. But you’re right about the cruelty.

    FWIW, I’ve got a Lansdowne pic in queue for my Borucki set. Still a month or so off, though.


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