Fall Dinner to Feature Millersburg Ferryman Captain Jack Dillman

Captain Jack Dillman, former ferryman of the Millersburg Ferry for many years, will be speaking at this year’s Juniata County Historical Society Fall Dinner Meeting to be held Wednesday, October 12.

Dillman, began his work at the wheel of the ferry, when he was a young teen.

His familiarity with the Susquehanna River near Millersburg began when he was just 14 years old and he began exploring the river on his own. During this time, coal was being dredged from the river and young Jack with his canoe became a regular visitor of the men digging coal there. A year later (1945), he began working as a coal digger as well. His days on the river were only about to begin.

Hitching rides on Millersburg’s steamboat run by Captain Warren Hunter, the youngster began regarding Hunter as his mentor. And, it just so happened that one day, the Captain left the wheel and said to Jack, “Here take over.”

“That was how I became a ferryman,” tells Dillman.

Although his stint in the US Navy began in 1949, his return from the service in 1970 put him right on the steamer again. His life-long career continued and he’s still talking about it today.

Dillman’s program will feature “The Last Raft” a film about what began as a 1938 historical reenactment of log rafting but became a tragedy along the Susquehanna River in Muncy, PA.

All dinner tickets will be $20 each and will include a baked ham meal. Dinner begins at 6:30 p.m. and is held at Walker Grange, Mexico, PA. Tickets are available at the society Archives Tuesdays 10:00 am. – 4:00 p.m. or Wednesdays 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Or mail your check with a self-addressed stamped envelope to Juniata County Historical Society, 498 Jefferson Street, Suite B, Mifflintown, PA 17059 to have your ticket(s) mailed to you. Deadline to reserve and pay is October 4.

Captain Jack Dillman

Leave a Reply