All about Scotsburn …

Some eight miles east of the Town of Pictou lies the picturesque village of Scotsburn. This petite village lies in the heart of a fine farming district. A pleasing appearance of Scotsburn comes from the attractive properties with their well-kept lawns and gardens. Over the years, thriving industries have developed within and around the village...

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Odd weather patterns on Pictou Island

Winter set in early with about three inches of snow falling on Nov. 11th 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 12th because of the unstable weather. It was still blowing hard and was...

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Pictou Bar Lighthouse

I recall as a small boy the many, many times during the late 1950s when I would be sailing with my parents to and from Pictou Island and going past the magnificent structure known as the Pictou Bar Lighthouse. During those years there was a dwelling for the light keeper and his family to live...

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My early Christmas years …

The Christmas season is once again quickly drawing upon us. I can’t help but reminisce about the changes and meanings that have taken place over the past number of years. I recall my past Christmases as a child on Pictou Island and all the excitement that lingered around we island kids during the months up...

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Jack Rankin kept himself busy …

I have previously written about the lives of Pictou Island’s Jack and Mary Rankin. Even today I can bring to mind so vividly those years when Jack and Mary Rankin lived in their big yellow house close to the East End of Pictou Island. Jack Rankin (1882-1965) was born and raised on Pictou Island. He...

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A new car on Pictou Island …

I enjoy rekindling those years gone by when I had lived on Pictou Island. I often review my mother’s written diaries that she had always kept when living there. Sometimes certain events that she had written may revive old memories and trigger me to get my computer running. I was surprised during the summer of...

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… traps and rope piled everywhere …

I received a call some years ago from a Laura Graham who lives in Sunnybrae. She has been reading my stories in the Pictou Advocate and has seen Harold Bennett’s name mentioned a time or two. She had known of a Harold Bennett back many, many years ago and was wondering if perhaps this gentleman...

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Winter isolation …

I struck up a great friendship with a young man from Cape Breton named Gerald Campbell when I became employed at Michelin Tires in 1972. Gerald and I worked the same crew and naturally became best of friends.  I married my high school sweetheart, Joann Taylor, in 1973 with Gerald being my best man. Gerald,...

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Keepers of the light

I have previously written a story about Jack (Happy) and Margaret MacDonald. As I had stated, they were the last keepers of the Pictou Island West End lighthouse. Pictou Island also had a lighthouse on its East End. The last keepers of the East lighthouse were Archie and Charlotte MacDonald. Archie (1897-1969) was born on...

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The day the Charles A. Dunning ran aground

October 5th 1951 was a grey, foggy ghostlike day. Pictou Island’s Spike MacDonald had returned from Caribou with his lobster boat and reported that the car ferry operating between Caribou and Prince Edward Island, the Charles A. Dunning, had run aground on the Gull Rock Reef. It was blowing a gale from the northeast the...

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