The company started in 1939 when Mr. Léo Séguin acquired the ferry boat linking Montebello and Lefaivre. At that time, the ferry boat with gate had the capacity to transport three vehicules, and the crossing cost 50 cents.
In 1947, Mr. Eugène Bourbonnais purchased the Montebello ferry service. In 1960, he built his first ferry boat made of steel, which could hold eight automobiles, a first in the region. Three years later, together with Mr. Hector Bourgeois, he purchased the Masson-Cumberland ferry service from the Lamarche brothers, André and Achille.
Some years later, in 1968, Maurice, Eugène Bourbonnais' son, quit his job as a police officer in the Sûreté du Québec, to go into business. He purchased his father's shares and became responsible of managing the business with Hector Bourgeois.
In 1969, the company added a second ferry boat to better meet the needs of a growing clientele. In 1975, Maurice Bourbonnais purchased Mr. Bourgeois' shares and became sole owner.
1977 marks the founding of "Les Ateliers Maurice Bourbonnais Ltée". This new company specializes in the construction and maintenance of ferry boats.
Innovation in 1978: a third ferry boat is added to the existing fleet. This ferry boat enables vehicules to enter from one extremity and to exit from the other, which greatly accelerates the efficiency of its service.
- MB June 13, 1978
- MB II June 12, 1980
- MB III September 1, 1988
- MB IV July 12, 1990
- MB V August 7, 1992
- MB VI 1997 SOL
- MB VII - June 2014
The installation of an air-bubbling system in 1982, up to 1987, enables the ferry boats to ply between the two banks 24 hours a day, 12 months a year. Afterwards, this system was replaced by two icebrakers, which maintain and keep open the channel throughout the winter months.
Alain and Luc, Maurice and Colette's sons, have shown an interest in the family company at an early age and have participated in its development and success.
Currently, Luc and Maurice are at the head of a fleet of six ferry boats, two icebrakers, and over fifty employees. Traversiers Bourbonnais is proud to offer a rapid and efficient service. The family-based company managed successfully in adapting to its clientele's needs. Now will Maurice's grandchildren have sea legs? only time will tell...