About the Society
Access: The Heritage Steamboat Wharves Program
The St. John River Society recognizes that the St. John River is a river of the people. The river served this mission well, being a place of gathering, recreation and contemplation in times past. Public access was also guaranteed with the steamboats that served as public transportation along the lower portion of the river. Most communities had a wharf that the steamboat would use to pick up and drop off passengers, much like a train station platform.
At the end of the steamboat era, the Federal Government took over the maintenance of these wharves and held them until 1997. In 1998 the Department of Fisheries and Oceans began a wharf divestiture program. Many wharves were taken over by community groups. The St. John River Society took over the maintenance of 12 heritage steamboat wharves in order to guarantee historic public access to the river. Today these wharves are used by the public to engage in timeless uses of the river; swimming, duck hunting, boating and leisurely contemplation of the beauty and majesty of this waterway.
List of Wharves Owned by The St. John River Society
- Burton Courthouse-unusable
- Public Landing
- White’s Bluff