Sunday, September 27, 2009

A free pass for the whole year on the Hudson River Day Line in 1911 for a very powerful, but totally unknown man today.

William B. Pollock was the head of the Marine Division of the New York Central Railroad. He was in charge of the ferries, tugs and other harbor craft dealing with the New York Central Railroad. He was a man of great power and of course it was wise to give the gift of a free pass to Hudson River Day Line to him and his wife.
In those days the man who was in charge of and had a strong control over the waterways to an island was mighty powerful. For the ferry was the only way to get out of New York. New York City of course is an island. There were no bridges or tunnels between New Jersey and New York. The only Bridges at the time were between Brooklyn, Queens and Manhattan.

He was a powerful man. Here is an example of his power. It took place when in 1916 he was involved in breaking up a strike by Union members of the New York Central Railroad who worked on the ferries and tugs and other harbor craft. He hired others during the strike and then said he would rehire the strikers if they gave up the union. In that strike for an example he refused to rehire all those who instigated the strike, which equaled to about 30 men.

So it was always nice to make a powerful man happy. It was a very different world then too.
The Hudson River Day Line offered trips up the Hudson from New York City and of course returns too. It was a wonderful service and company. Their ships were big lovely paddle wheel vessels that today are almost extinct as a species of vessel.