Life in a small community

Reprinted from Decks Awash, Volume 15, Number 6
November – December 1986
Photograph from MUN Digital Archives

(Click on photo to enlarge)

Albert Bailey

“The community’s as big as it’s ever been with 44 people living here. The families here are children and grandchildren of the three original families—Bailey, Avery and Churchill,” Albert Bailey tells us.

Albert was born in Ivany’s Cove in April 1918. He has always called it home, but he spent long periods of time away as did other people his age.

“I spent my lifetime in the lumberwoods—25 years in all- working for the A.N.D. Company in Badger, Millertown, Howley, Deer Lake and Clarenville. I had to stop working in 1965. I used to go away a month, sometimes three months, and, before I was married, six months. My wife Eva’s from Northwest Brook, which is only a half mile away through the woods and we used to go to church there. We’ve never had a church or school here.

“Logging slowed down in 1946, and by 1960 there was virtually nothing left. The change from the bucksaw to the chain saw made all the difference. There are one or two family operations left around here, but in those days sawmilling was a big business. Some men were fishing in the summer and in the woods in fall and winter. I went on the Labrador once and two men drowned, and I never went fishing again.”

Nobody got rich working in the woods as Albert ruefully points out.

“I cut wood for 90 cents a cord, then it went up to $2 a cord, and the last cut I made was for $6 a cord. Now you can get $35 a cord, and that’s more than I could get for a full week. I could cut 10 cords a day. Everyone used horses then, and there was a limit to how much you could cut and haul. Back then you worked in the lumberwoods, on the railroad, anywhere you could find work.”‘

The situation is a little better now.

“A good number are working in Clarenville,” Albert explains. “I have two boys working for Goobies Rentals in Hillview and another boy in Marystown. Our girl is in Alberta—she married a Newfoundlander and moved there.”

With all the new houses going up as family members return home, it looks like Ivany’s Cove’s future is assured and Albert will have plenty of company.

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Transcribed by Wanda Garrett, February 2019

These transcriptions may contain human errors. As always, confirm these as you would any other source material.