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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Tobacco, rum and the antics that ensue …

The year was 1953 and the Pictou Pea factory was in full operation. Many Pictou Islanders worked there seeking winter unemployment stamps. Harold Bennett was one of those Islanders. Bennett (as he was known) had grown up in the Sunnybrae area. He remembers those years when he lived in the little village of Sunnybrae. He...

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Cow tripping in the dark

PICTOU ISLAND 1954 A very mild winter occurred 1954. There was no snow anywhere on the ground for the month of February. Pictou Island’s only dirt road was nothing but mud. March 3 was a sunny calm day and my father sailed his boat, The Slo-Mo-Shun from Pictou Island right up Pictou Harbour and tier...

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The winter of 1958 …

The fall season of 1957 was very mild and there was no snow on the ground for Christmas Day. Enough snow fell on January 3, 1958 to turn the ground white but it melted over the next few days. It remained mild with still no ice in the Northumberland Strait. Bert MacLean from Pictou made...

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New home construction, curfews and a broken washing machine …

Scott Falconer and Charlie MacMillan sailed their boats from Pictou Island to the mainland on July 16, 1962.  They transported two boatloads of lumber back to Pictou Island for the construction of Scott and Rita’s new home.  Duncan and Roy MacCallum along with Scott began construction of the new three-bedroom house on July 30th. Many...

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Pictou Island’s mail delivery

I would like to recount a true story that the late Dr. Roland Sherwood wrote and shared with me some 30 years ago. In his early life, Mr. Sherwood worked for the Telephone Company. The following is a true story of a winter excursion that he made to repair phone service to Pictou Island in...

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Pictou Island Christmas 1959

The weather during the month of December 1959 remained mild, middle to high 30s Fahrenheit, the wind blew hard from the south nearly every day and it rained a lot. Jimmie MacDonald and wife Viney were found deceased in their burnt out home on December 10. Consequently, over the next several days, Arnold MacMillan kept...

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Summer of 1964 …

Probably my first experiences in seeing changes taking place within the local fisheries was with rope in the late 1950s or early 60s. Fishermen up to those years used a cotton rope for all purposes. Around the late 1950s or early 60s, a much lighter plastic rope was introduced. Lobster trap trawls usually require a...

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A wedding, a tractor and a telephone: Pictou Island in 1954

PICTOU ISLAND 1954 A very mild winter occurred 1954. There was no snow anywhere on the ground for the month of February. Pictou Island’s only dirt road was nothing but mud. March 3rd was a sunny, calm day and my father sailed his boat, The Slo-Mo-Shun, from Pictou Island right up Pictou harbor and tied...

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