When we arrived here, the first thing we noticed was the steep and somewhat bumpy road down into the village. But also, we couldn’t help but notice what an incredibly secluded little harbour this was. Buildings surrounded both sides, as far as the rocks would allow. Many were clearly abandoned, but several, mostly along the south side of the harbour, were still very much in use.
Founded in the 1840's, Petites, Newfoundland, has been home to generations of weather-hardened souls who made their living on the sea. By 1859, a methodist church was constructed that later became the Bethany United Church. There were 212 people living here in 1946, and only 146 by 1956. In October, 2003, the last remaining residents of the community were resettled.
It was already getting quite warm as we reached the mine site, spoke with the security guard and proceeded inside. I was being granted one of the last looks around the Lockerby mine before it is demolished. I get out of the car, don my work boots, high-viz vest, and hard hat, surveying the buildings around me to figure out how I want to tackle this. I’m like a kid in a candy store.
We woke up, had breakfast, filled the Rav with gas and headed out to see what adventure the day would bring. It was a beautiful sunny day in an amazing part of the Province of Newfoundland / Labrador and we were ready to take in the sights.
We first wandered out to a point we had noted earlier, and wanted to see in proper, clear daylight. A tourbus arrived shortly after us and disgorged its contents all over the road, but I tried to ignore that as much as possible. I noticed something out near the horizon in the water. I reached back into the Rav and got the binoculars for confirmation. Whales. I could see whales cresting far out in the harbour, and they were blowing spray high up into the air, refracting the sunlight at times into rainbows.
I saw an ad posted for the First Annual Manitoulin Rodeo and thought that it might be something interesting to check out. I have to admit that I had never been to a rodeo before. In my childhood there were many harvest fairs I went to, and I assumed that it would be somewhat similar. I was right, but I was wrong...
There were some great events, and great vendors. The weather was perfect, and I had a lot of fun with my telephoto lens. Despite that, I was unable to find any notice of a Second Annual Manitoulin Rodeo.
Rostock, Germany, 1923. Grete, a 6,548-ton cargo ship built by Neptun AG, slips into the water, awaiting service and ready to begin a strange life at sea. Entering service in July of that year for C Mohlenberg Reederei GmbH, she would sail under a German flag until 1934. In that year, the 440ft long ship with a beam of 57ft, and a draught of 25ft, 9 inches, was sold to an Italian firm and renamed Gabbiano.
It began innocently enough. We're driving along, me behind the wheel, my father browsing through a road atlas. He mentions a road that the map says will be decommissioned soon. As he traces along the line with his finger, he then mentions a town that the map says will be relocated soon. I asked the date of the map and realize that “soon” is likely well past. Immediately, we decide we’re going to take this road.
I have finished rebuilding this site, and I'm ready to begin adding content. Much of what will be added will be older material, not necessarily related to abandoned places. This is part of my expanding the scope of vision for the place. I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I do.