There are two ferries between Halifax and Dartmouth.One operates from the head of Dartmouth Cove where the Cole Harbour Road runs down to the shore. This is Creighton's Ferry. The other, Skerry's, operates from John Skerry's wharf at the foot of Ochterloney St. The boats used by each ferry service are shallops--driven by sail and oars--none of which boats is large enough to transport animals, carriages, or large loads of goods for market. These have to be transported on Skerry's scow, which, when needed, is towed behind the ferry. Akins (who as mentioned in O8n4 was Thomas Beamish's nephew) gives a brief description of the two ferry services as they would have operated in 1815:
"These ferry boats [i.e., Creighton's and Skerry's] were furnished with a lug sail and two and sometimes four oars. They were large clumsy boats, and occupied some thirty or forty minutes in making the passage across the harbor. There were no regular trips at appointed hours. When the boat arrived at either side the ferryman blew his horn (a conch shell) and would not start again until he had a full freight of passengers. The sound of the conch and the cry of 'Over! Over!' was the signal to go on board. The boats for both ferries landed at the Market Slip at Halifax."(1895, p. 167. See p. 168 for reference to Skerry's scow.)
From Louisa's account, it appears that the ferry continues to run after sunset. Likely it runs till one hour past sunset (that will be quitting time for the horse driven Team Boat Ferry, which will make its inaugural run on 8 Nov. 1816--see Payzant 1979, pp. 20-21).
Click to view Plan of Old Dartmouth(ca.1814) showing location of the two ferry landings.
Click to view illustration of Creighton's Landing(ca. 1820).