A consequence of the construction of various bridges connecting Staten Island to surrounding territories has been the end of its myriad of ferry services. The empire of Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt began in the 1810s when he instituted the first ferry service — by rowboat — between Staten Island and Manhattan. Turnpikes such as Richmond Terrace and Victory Boulevard were built to carry wagon traffic from one ferry to the other. The Tottenville ferry to Perth Amboy survived for several years after the twin spans the Goethals and Outerbridge Crossing were constructed.
Until I was age 7 my family and I traveled to St. George, Staten Island via a ferry at the end of Bay Ridge Avenue (69th Street) and from there, bussed to virtually any point on the island we favored, even as far as Tottenville. Staten Island was largely rural at the time with lots of empty fields and forests, especially on the south end. I was fascinated by the way everything looked so out of date, street lighting and signage-wise (I got into this kind of thing early).
The St. George Ferry closed 11/22/1964, one day after the opening of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, seen here in this unique shot from the ferry landing in 1966. In my mind, there should have been room for both, but Robert Moses and the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority thought differently.