Historical Ferries in Clay County
The publication Parade of Memories discusses a small number of these ferries on page 179.
Began operation in the 1850’s until 1885, when the county took over.
An 1832 description of Black Creek (from House Documents of the 13th Congress, related to building a trans-Florida canal):
Black Creek, at its entrance into the St. John, presents a wide cove, across which stretches a bar, having a depth of 8 feet at high tide, and 6 ½ feet at low tide. After crossing this bar, the depth increases, and 12 feet may be carried as far up as the fork, 12 ½ miles from the St. John. At Branum’s ferry, 5 miles below the fork, the depth is 35 feet, and the width about 120 yards
The first private ferry chartered after the Civil War. Located on the South Prong of Black Creek, where Branning’s Bridge had been.
Later became Garey’s Ferry, and still later owned by Charles Willey.
George Frisbee operated a ferry in Middleburg beginning in 1878.
Gad Frisbee’s Place Ferry
George’s brother Gadsden operated a ferry two miles east of the fork (3 1/2 miles by water) in 1885.
Previously Clark’s Ferry, and later owned by Charles Willey. Named after Samuel Garey; At the Middleburg boat ramp.
A county ferry from 1877. It was not in use from 1881 until 1883 when repairs were required. In 1885 it was moved to Moss’s Mill.
Moss’ Mill Ferry
After the Civil War, Clay County Board of County Commission minutes show citizens of Middleburg and vicinty requsted a change of location of the ferries on Black Creek, by moving the ferry at M. A. Knights to Moss’ sawmill and to consolidate Chalkers and Brannings ferries into one at the forks of Black Creek. Signed M. A. Knight, A. C. Chalker, Ivy Williamson, T. J. Dillaberry, Henry Ayers, Charlie Bardin, J. R. Shore, Gad Frisbee, Elias Tedder, M. F Geiger, J. J. Dillaberry, A. H. Moss, W. W. Hull, Jr., M. H. Teratus.
Mentioned in the canal report of 1832. Where it landed in the Clay County areas is unknown.
James Register began operation in January, 1879. Replaced by Register Bridge May 3, 1883 — the only covered bridge in the county. On October 5, 1894 the bridge was washed out by a storm, so the ferry began operations again. Finally the Bryan Jennings bridge was completed.
Swimming Pen Creek Ferry
The County operated a ferry from 1879 through 1893. A bridge was built in 1893, burned in 1894, and replaced.
At the mouth of Black Creek. Operated by Alfred Taylor from 1853, then by James Feurcee. The county took possession in 1874. A drawbridge replaced the ferry on January 1, 1901.