Huck Finn would be Proud

On the day I moved into my new apartment here in Mechanicsburg, the owner of the complex told me about two places she thought would offer good picture opportunities. Today I decided to hop in the truck and take a little trip to see why she liked them so much.

The first stop was the other end of Harrisburg at a place known as Fort Hunter. I’m not quite sure how to describe this location. It’s a park, a repository of historic structures – some built there, some moved there, and a banquet hall and meeting facility. I walked around the grounds for a bit, snapping some pictures along the way. The best shot I took was of the Fort’s Centennial Barn. Built in 1876 to house a dairy milk business, today it is used to host meetings, weddings, and parties.

Leaving the fort I drove further north in search of Millersburg Ferry, an old, double stern-wheel paddleboat that takes passengers and cars across the Susquehanna River from Millersburg to Buffalo Township. No one knows for sure when the ferry service started, but tax records from 1820 indicate it was already on the books at that time.

Leaving my truck parked down the street, I walked the short distance through a riverside park and down the ramp to the ferry loading area. The scene could have been pulled right out of a Huck Finn novel. A rather shabby, yet seemingly substantial, wooden – I hate to call it a – dock made its way a short distance from the shore into the water. To the right, a big white door was left “open” in its frame instructing those who needed a ferry to “close” it for service. If the ferry was on the other side, closing the door served as a signal to the captain that passengers awaited.

Looking out over the water, the ferry slowly came into view. It was interesting watching the vessel attempt to navigate across by actually paddling up river, the strong current working against its ancient stern-wheels as it meandered its way to shore. When the boat finally docked, I debated hopping on board with the others, but in the end decided to shoot from land.

Today’s high humidity made for a rather milky-looking sky, but the lack of strong sunshine meant limited shadows. So, all-in-all, a descent trade-off. I shot thirty totally images and kept two in the end. Not a great shoot, but not a total loss either.