History of the Cabot Trail

map-cabot-1

Merry meet all,

I am going to carry you away on a historic journey through Pleasant Bay’s uneasy beginnings. Pleasant Bay is the setting for my ghost novel. The rural unruly natural setting and town has an interesting history. The Cabot Trail was named after the Italian explorer John Cabot (Giovanni Caboto), who reached the shores in 1497, on a sailing mission for King Henry VII of England. The name also honours the meeting of the Cabot and the Mi’kmaq people, who inhabited the island over 500 years ago. 

The municipal government felt a need to create a loop between the northern communities in 1924. This created jobs for men who used picks, shovels and dynamite to create the highway. The Cabot Trail was completed in 1932, and connected the previously isolated fishing villages for an approximate 300 kilometre loop. Some of the communities are Acadian, Irish and Scottish settlements. 

Pleasant Bay is a supreme place for whale watching areas. Pilot, humpback, minke and finback whales are frequently sighted off the coastline and the nearby communities. There is also a wonderful Whale Interpretive Centre, and I have visited the Museum myself. The best tour offered for whale watching is Mark Timmons’ Capt. Mark’s Whale and Seal Cruise. Here is the link: http://www.whaleandsealcruise.com. The tours are offered seasonally. You can use a hydrophone to hear the whales underwater.  

It was dangerous driving over the early Trail. People drove in Model T Fords then.  The Trail was regularly visited by moose, and hairpin turns and steep hills made driving difficult. Rushing sixty miles an hour was unheard of there. Here is a photo to show you what it was like:

cbroad

The website for the photo is: http://www.cabottrail.com/history.htm. 

Now, where I visit with my family, I can also show you a before and after photo of the Lower End, as we fondly call it. 

Then:

9Aug1951Alfred

This picture was taken in 1951. The men built over 100 boats back then. It was tradition for a man to hit the bow of a boat with a hammer. He would say, “Now that’s the last one.” But of course, they would continue to build boats. 

Now: 

CIMG0788

I took this photo and the place is absolutely magickally beautiful!! Well worth a visit!!

 

Credit given to this site for photos and information: http://www.cabot-trail-communities/pleasant-bay/

 

Blessed Be, Lady Spiderwitch )O(

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