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Heritage of Carbonear neighbourhoods focus of community discussion

Carbonear resident Judy Symonds, centre, introduces herself at the start of an afternoon tea jointly hosted by Heritage Newfoundland and Labrador and the Town of Carbonear's Green Team Tuesday, Aug. 6 at the Princess Sheila Senior's Club Building on Water Street.  Seated next to Symonds, from left, are Heritage NL folklorist Dale Jarvis and fellow Carbonear resident Betty Ann Goff.
Carbonear resident Judy Symonds, centre, introduces herself at the start of an afternoon tea jointly hosted by Heritage Newfoundland and Labrador and the Town of Carbonear's Green Team Tuesday, Aug. 6 at the Princess Sheila Senior's Club Building on Water Street. Seated next to Symonds, from left, are Heritage NL folklorist Dale Jarvis and fellow Carbonear resident Betty Ann Goff. - Andrew Robinson
CARBONEAR, N.L. —

As discussion continued, Dale Jarvis asked if anyone knew any Carbonear ghost stories.

"My mother-in-law saw ghosts everywhere," remarked Judy Cameron, a Carbonear resident who grew up on Water Street.

"Yeah, but she was the undertaker's wife," chimed in Betty Ann Goff, seated beside Cameron at the Princess Sheila Seniors Club Building on Water Street. She drew a big laugh.

Jarvis, Heritage Newfoundland and Labrador folklorist, was in the community Tuesday, Aug. 6 for an afternoon tea jointly hosted with the Carbonear Green Team. The event was to collect and record information about the places, neighbourhoods, landmarks, trails and coves within the Conception Bay North community that may for one reason or another get lost as time passes. The hope is to share information from one generation to the next.

The gathering attracted young and old, with Jarvis there to guide conversation.

The Green Team has been involved in work on the new hiking trail leading to Knox's Hole, a traditional swimming hole. According to Cameron, there were once families with the last name Knox in the area. She suggested there are Dwyers still living in Carbonear with ties to the original Knox clan.

"Their tiddly team is called Knox's Nuggets," she said, referring to the game from yesteryear played in some parts of rural Newfoundland that involved hitting one stick with another into a playing field.

Island Pond Brook runs through Knox's Hole. It was noted there a swimming pool was once maintained nearby before the town built its indoor pool on Valley Road. Some bits of concrete are still evident in the brook.

It was noted that where the new trail proceeds west of Route 70, it was known by many as Milton's Bridge.

Neighbourhoods

Getting into neighbourhoods, the conversation veered towards the area of Irishtown in Carbonear, which people said starts at Adelaide Street and proceeds up Irish Town Road. Among family names associated with the area are Griffin, Butt, Marshall, Harrington, Morrissey, Emerson and White.

The rivalries within Carbonear were clearly defined by what side of the town you were from. Cameron noted the south end of Carbonear mostly consisted of Protestants, with Catholics living on the north side. At one time, there were separate schools in Carbonear for five denominations of faith — Salvation Army, Anglican, United, Pentecostal and Catholic.

"Because you went to separate schools, you didn't really mix until you were teenagers," she said.

A bigger rivalry was acknowledged, too, between residents of Carbonear and its neighbour Harbour Grace.

For the Crocker's Cove neighbourhood (an area known for its dense tree coverage), the general consensus was it went from the bottom of Harbour Rock Hill to the site of the old hospital.

There was some debate about whether Across the Doors was part of Crocker's Cove – it's also a short street between Long's Hill and Liberton's Hill. As Cameron has heard it, Across the Doors got its name from the area at one time being quite boggy, forcing people to place doors on the ground so people could walk around.

Another area discussed was Saddle Hill, behind Carbonear General Hospital. Family names common in that area include Winter, Seaward and Simms.

editor@cbncompass.ca 

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