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San Diego and Coronado Ferry Collection

Identifier: MS-0200

Scope and Contents

The small San Diego and Coronado Ferry Collection consists of five items, and documents selected financial operations of the company from early in its long history. It consists of three financial ledgers, one report, and one broadside. The first ledger dates from 1907 to 1916 and includes detailed information on capital, payrolls, expenses, dividends, cash charges, and taxes. Part of this ledger is devoted to bookkeeping for specific jobs and projects, such as "Coronado Turnstile," "Painting the Steamer Ramona," and "New Safety Gates." The second ledger dates from 1920-1935 and is organized much like the first. These ledgers give a clear record of the company's priorities over several owners, and provide useful information on partnerships with local companies for infrastructure, improvements based on customer needs, and problems arising from the company's growth and expansion. This financial picture of the company's activities is supported by a 1924 valuation report which offers considerable detail about revenues and expenditures. The broadside, showing tariffs for bay passage in 1910, documents the transportation habits of people and companies in the growing city.

A third ledger, dating from 1935-1937, documents the financial activities of a partner business, the "Exposition Transportation Company," which existed solely to serve visitors to the California-Pacific Exposition in Balboa Park during those years. It offered luxury and charter bus tours of the city, rollerchairs and rickshaws on the grounds of the Exposition, and transportation to other local stations of transit (including the Ferry Company terminal) for tourists. The ledger details revenue and expenses, taxes, assets, and liabilities of this short-lived but active company.


  • Creation: 1907-1937


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

The copyright interests in some or all of these materials have not been transferred to San Diego State University. Copyright resides with the creator(s) of materials contained in the collection or their heirs. The nature of archival collections is such that multiple creators are often applicable and copyright status may be difficult or even impossible to determine. In any case, the user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, obtaining publication rights and copyright infringement. When requesting images from Special Collections & University Archives for publication, we require a signed agreement waiving San Diego State University of any liability in the event of a copyright violation.

Historical Note

The San Diego and Coronado Ferry Company provided ferry service for pedestrians and vehicles from San Diego to North Island and Coronado. It was incorporated by H. L. Story and Elijah S. Babcock on April 14, 1886 and was a subsidiary of the Coronado Beach Company. The company's first function was to transport workers building the Hotel del Coronado and to promote the development of the island as a health resort and spa.

The company terminated service on August 2, 1969 at 11:59 p.m. The Coronado Bridge officially opened one minute later. The last owners of the company, a firm owned by Jesse L. Haugh, bought it from previous owner John D. Spreckels, who had taken it over from Story and Babcock. At the time of its closing, the ferry company was a subsidiary of the San Diego Transit System and a partner to the San Diego Electric Railway.


3.20 Linear Feet

Language of Materials


Source of Acquisition

San Diego and Coronado Ferry Company



San Diego and Coronado Ferry Collection
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Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections & University Archives Repository

5500 Campanile Dr. MC 8050
San Diego CA 92182-8050 US