The SS Kyle – Part of Our History


The Kyle

Originally uploaded by eracose

Driving along Veterans’ Memorial Highway near Harbour Grace, I am always torn between looking down at the Kyle in the harbour and looking across the road at the Harbour Grace Air Strip [which is perhaps disconcerting to oncoming traffic.]

The Holdin’ Ground Project

However, it was not until we began working on “The Holdin’ Ground Project” that I realized the full impact of the Kyle on the lives of people in Conception Bay North. Dale Jarvis, Intangible Cultural Heritage Development Officer for the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador,was part of the audience at the Holdin’ Ground Project Launch.  He pointed out that the towns of Conception Bay North – Carbonear, Harbour Grace, Spaniard’s Bay, Bay Roberts, Brigus, and Cupids (just to name the larger towns) are very well known for their ties to the Kyle and the Labrador fishery.

Many of the older citizens interviewed participated in the Labrador fishery at some point in their lives, and many of them traveled to coastal Labrador on the Kyle.

Mrs. Emmie Roach (88) tells of going to the Labrador on the Kyle as young woman.

Cecil Greenland (104), Gus Menchions (94),  and Ralph Greenland (80) also describe going to the Labrador.  See other interviews that were part of the Holdin’ Ground Project  > >

Ted Russell’s “Smokeroom on the Kyle”

As part of  “A Time in Pigeon Inlet,”  Ted Russell (through the magic of recording), Kelly Russell, Russells the Corner,  the Pigeon Inlet Players, and the audience read Ted Russell’s “Smokeroom on the Kyle.”  Ted Russell, who grew up on Coley’s Point, must have heard many stories about the Kyle .

“A Time in Pigeon Inlet” is held Saturday nights until September 4 in Bay Roberts > >

Victoria Loyal Orange Lodge #3 Museum and Playhouse

In addition, Victoria Loyal Orange Lodge #3,  which  has been resorted and opened to the public as a play house and museum by Brenda and Jerry Mercer, has a 10 Foot Hand Made Model of the Kyle.

Information about the Victoria LOL #3 Museum and  Playhouse > >

The Pigeon Inlet Quilt

The Pigeon Inlet Quilt which was recently donated to the Bay Roberts Cultural Foundation by the Pigeon Inlet Quilters Guild has two blocks based on “Smokeroom on the Kyle.”  The top left block  is “The Kyle” by Norma King and the block with the pot bellied stove almost in the middle of the left side is “Inside the Smokeroom on the Kyle” by Heather French and Enid Penney. [They even have “coal” – made of labradorite – in the bucket.]  In order to make the block, they consulted older members of their family who could remember what it looked like.  [The quilt is on permanent display at the Bay Roberts  Visitor Information Centre on Veterans’ Memorial Highway.]

Quilt based on "Chronicles of Uncle Mose."
Pigeon Inlet Quilt

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1 Comment

Filed under Baccalieu Trail, Bay Roberts, Brigus, Carbonear, Labrador, Newfoundland and Labrador, Northern Avalon, Spaniards Bay

One response to “The SS Kyle – Part of Our History

  1. Good articles about the Kyle. When I was teaching in Harbour Grace in the 70s there was always debate about what to do with the Kyle – make a museum or sink her/scrap her. So when I got on board one time, I wrote this song on the Kyle’s deck. The last stanza is somewhat significant as I realize the Kyle was painted for the ’97 Cabot celebrations. My words came through. Enjoy! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fazfZanfr3s
    NTV did a few clips as well with our song. May this old bulldog of the North live on! ~Mike Madigan, The SharecropperTrio of Nfld.

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