How did you get to the Peach Bottom ferry?
One of my previous columns in the York Sunday News was on the ferries that crossed the Susquehanna River between York and Lancaster counties. There were so many that I didn’t have room to write more than a sentence or two on each one. Since then I have been doing an occasional blog post on individual ferries with more detail.
I was recently asked what the route would have been from York to the Peach Bottom ferry. After looking at maps from 1801, 1821, 1860 and 1876, as well as a modern map, I guessed the route might have followed the Plank Rd. (Prospect Street) toward Longstown, then somewhat followed Route 24 to Red Lion, connecting there with Route 74, eventually crossing Muddy Creek and then bearing left to the ferry, probably at least partially via present Paper Mill Road.
It is, however, more complicated than that. Roads were sometimes straightened, or new parts opened and old sections abandoned. Also, as you can see on the 1860 and 1876 maps there were two ferries at Peach Bottom not far apart in the 19th century with the names switching. In addition, the Springwood Road and Camp Betty Washington Road both have quite a few very houses still on them, indicating those roads were in use for a long time, so one or both of them might have figured into the route.
I am guessing that the York County terminus of the main ferry would be in the area of the Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station. Here are details of that area of the maps, the extreme southeastern portion of York County. See what you think. Hard copies of all the maps can be seen at the York County Heritage Trust Library/Archives.