WHYY is proud to present the new documentary “Billion Mile Journey: The Cape May-Lewes Ferry” online.
The one-hour show features some of the most interesting stories about the ferry, which began operations on July 1, 1964. Over the course of 50 years, the ferry has touched the lives of millions of visitors and residents of Delaware and New Jersey as a well-known tourist destination and essential mode of transportation.
The program documents the history of the ferry and tells the personal stories of a 20-minute wedding in 1996 and the rescue of a dog that led to procedure changes on the vessels. Filmed and edited in high definition, viewers will receive an in-depth look at operations on both sides of the bay, discover how the boats are launched and learn what it takes to rebuild a ferry engine. The production coincides with WHYY’s 50th year of reporting in Delaware.
The Cape May-Lewes Ferry is operated by the Delaware River and Bay Authority and serves the Twin Capes region of Cape May, NJ and Lewes, DE. On July 1, 1964, the first ferry vessel departed the Lewes terminal at 6:47 a.m., carrying eight vehicles and fifteen passengers. Over the years, the ferry has transported more than 43 million people and 14 million vehicles across the Delaware Bay. Cars from each of the 50 states and numerous foreign countries have made the ferry trip and over one billion miles have been covered during the 50 years of round trip travel.
As part of the 50th anniversary, WHYY held two outdoor screenings of the documentary at each of the ferry ports. In addition, the show was broadcast on WHYY-TV.