Jamestown-Scotland Ferry System


Captain Albert Jester sailed the "Captain John Smith", the first motorized automobile ferry crossing the James River in 1925. 

Today, the Jamestown-Scotland Ferry System is operated by the Virginia Department of Transportation. This unique trip across the historic James River is free and takes about 20 minutes. We suggest guests use the time to take in the views of the shorelines on either side of the river and imagine what the early colonists might have seen as they explored this area for the first time. 

In 2015, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) marked the 90 year anniversary of the ferry service with a special presentation and cake cutting, followed by a Ceremonial Ferry Automobile Crossing of the James River. Immediately following VDOT's event, a special preview event was held to see the newly-restored deckhouse of the original "Capt. John Smith" ferry vessel at the Surry County Historical Society and Museums.