Wilbert Henderson …

I spent and hour or so visiting with Wilbert Henderson and his lovely wife Della at their home in Seafoam on January 26th in 2003. That afternoon was spent reflecting back in time to some of Wilbert’s past years and he had my undivided attention. Wilbert reflected back to past years when he and Donnie...

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The winter of 1955-56

Winter set in early with about three inches of snow falling on Nov. 11, 1955. My father and Arnold MacMillan had been setting their smelt nets together in coves around the Merigomish area but had returned home to Pictou Island on November 12 because of the unstable weather. It was still blowing hard and was...

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The stranger

A few years after I was born, my dad met a stranger who was new to our small town. From the beginning, Dad was fascinated with this enchanting newcomer and soon invited him to live with our family. The stranger was quickly accepted and was around from then on. As I grew up, I never...

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New teacher for Pictou Island school

The year was 1960 and Pictou Island residents were in search of a qualified school teacher to teach us children. Distinguished school teacher Dave Mackay and his family had just spent the past three years on the island and had served the islanders very well. It was now, however, time for the MacKay family to...

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Dangers of being a fisherman

The ice had left the Northumberland Strait during late March of 1958. Lobster season was able to begin as scheduled on April 30th. My father fished those years in his boat Slo-mo-Shun. Dad had built this 30-foot long open wooden boat on Pictou Island in 1951. My father powered this boat with a 289 cubic...

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2002 Pictou Lobster Carnival boat races

During past years, fishermen would often be the builder or participate in the building of their own wooden fishing boats. The fishing boats around these local waters were usually built with the design known as the round or barrel bottom. Those boats would be designed and built to a particular size and shape and unlike...

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The Bairds plus one

My parents and I left our longtime Pictou Island roots and moved to Central Caribou on September 2nd 1964. We were leaving behind a unique way of life and many adjustments lay ahead especially for a kid like me. I often think about those nights on Pictou Island when our lighting at night was obtained...

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What lobsters?

I have previously written a tale or two about Anderson MacLean from River John and his ways of life as a fisherman on Pictou Island. I thank those of you who have shared your accounts of past events thus allowing me to share them with others. One such recollection that was passed onto me concerning...

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Island produces hockey star

I reflect back 40-plus years when fishermen around Pictou Island would live in their fishing shanties during lobster season.  Art Ferguson and my father had their shanties side by side on the bank above the Pictou Island wharf. Art’s son Graham and I were approximately the same age and as tradition goes, we would usually...

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Things that go bump in the night

It was a warm sunny Monday morning, June 2, 1954 and my sisters Rita, Rosemary and brother Vincent had risen early. This was grading day and excitement filled our home. Vincent went into Grade 2. Rosemary graded into Grade 4 and Rita went into Grade 6. Miriam Wong from Pictou was Pictou Island’s schoolteacher and...

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