The Coast Guard Comes To Helena's Rescue

Tue Jul 22 18:55:50 EDT 1997

Good News came in from Jerry Pillow. The Coast Guard was there to
help make sure that the crossings were safe. My apologies for any
misunderstanding about the situation. I wonder why the Coast Guard
wasn't doing the ferrying themselves, however.  Bill Donoghue

Jerry Pillow wrote:
"Actually the Coast Guard is stopping boat owners from recklessly
endangering peoples lives. They are not stopping ferrying, just
making sure that the boats are not overloaded and are equipped with
life jackets. They are also stopping price gouging - you have to have

a Federal license to charge for ferrying.
As usual in situations like this there is a lot of misinformation
being put out by people that don't bother to check the facts. Hell
they might get in the way of a good tirade.
In no way did the state or local gov't stop the ferry at Helena from

running in 1960 when the bridge was opened. The toll for the bridge
was $1 while the cost for crossing on the ferry was $5 per car, it
also took about 30 min's longer. Nature just took its course.
The man who owned the ferry was Charles Halbert , he also helped
Conway Twitty get his start in the music bidness and put up Robbie
Robertson for a while before Robbie joined the Hawks which later
became The Band. Ronnie Hawkins wanted Robbie to live in Helena for
awhile to soak up some music, Robbie mused about this time in his
life in the song "Somewhere Down that Crazy River".
Excuse my length I'm still groggy from hours and hours of driving."
  Jerry Pillow
 music director - King Biscuit Blues Festival
"Don't start me to talking,I'll tell you everything I know"
                                                 Sonny Boy

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