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This article is from the Encyclopedia of North Carolina edited by William S. Powell. Copyright © 2006 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

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Blossom's Ferry

by Beverly Tetterton, 2006

Blossom's Ferry was located on the Northeast Cape Fear River on the border between New Hanover and Pender Counties, one mile east-northeast of the community of Castle Hayne and approximately nine miles north of Wilmington. There is evidence of ferry activity as early as 1731 on the Northeast Cape Fear; a drawbridge and a ferry were sometimes operated in conjunction with each other in that vicinity. When Jackson Wood bought the property in 1866, the title included only "the ferry known as Big Bridge Ferry." Wood and his nephew John E. Wood operated a ferry there until 1882, when the property and ferry concession were purchased by Margaret Sophia Blossom. She and her husband Samuel continued the ferry service until his death in 1926. By that time the construction of a state-maintained bridge less than a mile west of the site eliminated the need for a ferry, ending 200 years of transportation activity. Archaeological research conducted at the ferry site from 1981 to 1983 by the East Carolina University Program in Maritime History and Underwater Research revealed the remains of two ferries, one dating from the mid-eighteenth century and the other from the late eighteenth or early nineteenth century.


Gordon P. Watts Jr. and Wesley K. Hall, An Investigation of Blossom's Ferry on the Northeast Cape Fear River (East Carolina University Department of History, ECU Research Report no. 1, January 1986).

Additional Resources:

Journal of the Senate of the General Assembly of the State of North Carolina, 1903: