The Evening Telegram – 1900s

August 27, 1900

SAD FIRE ACCIDENT at Northern Bight – This morning at 11:30 our quiet neighborhood was startled by immense clouds of smoke emanating from the house of Mr. David Cooper, which in the short space of half an hour ended in its complete destruction. He was melting tar on the kitchen stove, and was called outside for a moment for some purpose, when the tar took fire, and on his return it was too late. Everything he was owner of was completely destroyed, the worst feature being his hard-earned fifty dollars consumed by the angry flames. Such a loss casts a gloom over the place. The season was dark enough without this. His loss is indeed severe; its effect will be felt for years. Mr. Cooper was mail carried on the arm until quite recently.

R.H. Maddock, Northern Bight, August 22nd, 1900


June 6, 1901


Schooner Springfield Cut Down by the Madeline.

LAST evening the schooner Springfield, Capt. Styles, of Northern Bight, Random, was cut down off Torbay by the Madeline, Capt. Souloy. The Springfield left here yesterday for Northern Bight with supplies for the Labrador fishery. Off Torbay the schooner Madeline was met beating up to St. John’s with a load of lumber for Martin Brothers. The Madeline crashed into the starboard quarter of the Springfield while reaching inshore, tearing away her stern davits and all her quarter right in to the cabin house, and smashing off her mainboom, making a total wreck of her mainsail. A tug was sent to her assistance and she was towed back to port last night. The damages are set between two and three hundred dollars. She can be seen to-day off O’Dwyer’s wharf, having repairs done, and what is left of her mainsail hanging up to dry.

May 2, 1902


One of the prettiest vessels ever built in the country will be launched in a few days at Northern Bight, T.B. She is being built by Mr. Joseph Drodge, for Mr. Martin, of Bell Island. The vessel will -sur about 60 tons and is built after the American ” tooth-pick” style. Her builder is an experienced shipwright, he having built four vessels previous to this. Last year he visited Boston and Gloucester, for the purpose of securing plans and models for shipbuilding purposes. Mr. Drodge has given a lot of employment at Northern Bight the past winter and deserves great credit for his enterprise.

June 13, 1902

 ET 1902 6 13ET 1902 06 13 2   A PRETTY VESSEL

ONE of the prettiest little vessels seen in St. John’s this spring is now at Baird, Gordon & Co.’s wharf. She is new, being only off the stocks a few weeks. Her builder is Captain E. Peddle, who also owns and commands her. She was built in Hodge’s Cove, S.W. Arm of Random, T. B., and is the work of competent builders, who have constructed her especially for bounty. Her name will be the Alfrida, and will be registered by Mr. Alcock. Her crew say that she is a splendid sailer and a most trustworthy ship, having been out in last Friday’s storm, and came through unscathed. The vessel will be used at the Labrador fishery this summer, and is now taking supplies for same. Captain Peddle has shown himself to be a first-class builder, and is to be congratulated on being the owner of such a splendid schooner.


April 27, 1903


Mr. Nehemiah Frost, J.P., of Northern Bight, Trinity Bay, is visiting St. John’s en route to Canada and the United State for a trip on business and pleasure combined. He will be away about six weeks.


May 20, 1903


Elias Avery, of Grates Cove, was struck by the boom of the schooner Royal Oak, while going through Bacalieu Tickle on the way from St. John’s, Friday last, and knocked overboard. He was sitting on the after “companion” at the time, when the mainsail “jibed” and knocked him over. The crew made every effort to save him, but he sank before they could reach him. He was 26 years of age, and unmarried. The Royal Oak is a 25-ton schooner, belonging to Skipper Nicholas Vey, of Random. Her crew consisted of only three men.


June 16, 1904 


DURING the winter many of the people of Random have been employed in cutting wood for Mr. N. Gardner of Foster’s Point. Several schooners have been built and others repaired during the winter season.

FISHERMEN are now getting their traps, etc., ready for the fishery season. There is a sign of fish, and prospects look bright. The slate quarries are affording much employment. The people are now prosperous and attribute their good fortune to the policy of progress of the Bond Government.

A NEW Anglican Church is in course of construction at Hodge’s Cove, and friends in St. John’s contributed liberally; a hundred dollars was raised in the city. The Rural Dean, Rev. G. N. Field, recently paid a visit to this Mission.

A PRETTY wedding took place at Northern Bight., The contracting parties were Mr. W. J. Cooper of Grate’s Cove and Miss Lily Ann Churchill of Northern Bight, daughter of the lay reader. The bride was attended by Miss Laura Benson and others. The groom was supported by Mr. William Churchill. The bride was charmingly attired in white. After the ceremony a repast was partaken at the residence of the bride’s parent. The happy couple have taken up their residence at Grate’s Cove. The ceremony was performed by the Rev. A. G. Talk, the Incumbent of Random.


April 7, 1905

Meting out Jutice – Seth Styles, twenty-five, fisherman, of Northern Bight, brought in by Sergeant Cox this morning, was accused of the larceny of ten dollars from the shop of Mr. J.C. Fearn at Harbor Buffett in 1903. the case was not adjucated upon this morning and the accused is held in the lock-up.


April 11, 1905

Larceny Case Postponed – Sergt. Cox of Whitbourne, who came to the city on Friday last with a prisoner for alleged larceny, returned home again today. The case, which is against a man from Northern Bight, T.B., had to be postponed till the arrival in town of Mr. J.C. Fearn, of Harbour Buffett, who is a witness. The latter is now in the city, and the case will proceed with.


March 5, 1906

Destroyed By Fire.

The residence of Stephen Smith of of Hodge’s Cove, Random, T. B. was almost ruined by fire on the night of Wednesday, February 21st. The family consisting of Mr. and Mrs. S. Smith, their sons William and Isaac, Miss Colford a school teacher, two women and a man servant were all asleep when the blaze started. William was the first to wake and was almost stiffled. He gave the alarm and tried to get down stairs, but was unable to breathe in the reek of blinding smoke. A second attempt was more successful, and he succeeded in awakening his parents who slept on the ground floor. They managed with great difficulty to get clear of the house Mrs. Smith being considerably bruised in the attempt, as it was impossible to see. Flames were now breaking out, and their attention was turned to the rescue of the other inmates who were on the floor above. By this time the neighbours were at the scene, and one of them mounting the gallery in front caught Miss Colford as she jumped from a window. The other women also jumped to the gallery and escaped unhurt, in their night clothes not having time to save anything.

Isaac Smith who was the last to get clear, was blinded on awakening, but after groping round, he finally got to the window of his room and leaped. He landed on the hard frozen ground twenty feet below and though bruised was not otherwise injured. The man servant had already got out, so a number of the men, led by Wm Smith, attacked the back part of the house with axes, where the fire seemed to have started, and after breaking through they managed, by the aid of snow and water, to get the flames under control.

It was difficult work, and by the time they had succeeded, a large part of the house was destroyed and the rest almost ruined by the smoke. A large amount of clothing, valued at about $150, was burned, while the damage to the house is about $200. This is a total loss, as no insurance was carried. The people, however, were glad to escape with their lives.

November 9, 1906

DURING the recent rain storm Mr. Bugden’s saw mill in Random Sound was washed from its foundation and completely destroyed. The loss is a severe one on the owner.


November 27, 1906

Mr. William Smith, a well-known resident of Random Sound, T. B., arrived in the city last night from Harbour Grace. He came in the schooner Nelson, Capt. T. Hart, and is looking remarkably well, notwithstanding his three score years and ten.


November 29, 1906

The Seven Brothers, Capt. James Shaw, arrived yesterday from Little Heart’s Ease, T. B. is discharging fish at the wharf of Browning & Son.


May 25, 1907

The crew of the schooner Hypastia, now in port, say that on their way here from Trinity they were told that nearly forty sheep were destroyed by dogs last week at Hodge’s Cove, Trinity Bay. These vicious animal are plenty in that neighborhood.


June 11, 1907


Mr. J. Vey Loses Lot of Property.

A fire broke out in a stable belonging to Mr. John Vey, Long Beach, Random, S.W. Arm, on Monday, and completely destroyed the building and all its contents, including a fine code trap worth $400 and a lot of other fishing gear. If the wind had been in any other direction than that in which it blew the whole settlement would have been swept. Mr. and Mrs. Vey were here in town at the time and were astonished to hear the news of the affair. It is believed that the place was set afire by some boys who were playing there. Mr. Vey was obliged to buy a new cod trap. He had no insurance.

September 20, 1907

 ET 1907 September 20 Schooner Elenora E Handsome Schooner

The pretty schooner Elenora E., Capt. Martin, is now in port from Trinity. She was built last winter at Little Heart’s Ease, and is a credit to her builders. This is her first time at St. John’s. She take a general cargo of provisions from Baine, Johnston & Co., and will sail for home about Monday next.


October 1, 1907

News from Random

The schooner Florence, W. Gulliford, master, arrived from Labrador to the N.W. Arm of Random, T.B., Sunday, with 400 four hundred qtls. of fish.

The Annie B also arrived Saturday with a small catch.

Moses Martin’s schooner arrived at Hickman’s Harbor from Labrador in the height of the recent storm, poorly fished.

Pilley’s schooner also arrived at Lady Cove poorly fished.

Burt’s schooner arrived there also last week with a small catch.

The schooner Springfield, John Styles, master, arrived at St. John’s from Northern Bight, T.B., Saturday night last. She met a stiff breeze when off Cape Saint Francis. The clew rope of the staysail was burst and the sail had to be taken in. She then ran to the Narrows and beat in under double-reefed mainsail, single-reefed foresal and flying jib. She brought a load of lumber for C. Hannaford of Northern Bight.


February 18, 1908

Mail Courier Drowned
The hardships and dangers of our mail couriers which have to be faced by these hardy men in their arduous duties, are illustrated again by the sad accident which is announced in the following message, for which we thank Acting Inspector General Sullivan:-
Britannia Cove, February 7, 1908, To John Sullivan, J.P., Acting Inspector General:
James Dodge, mail courier, was drowned this morning at Northern Bight while carrying the mail. The body was recovered. Constable Way.



July 24, 1908

COME HERE TO GO FISHING — Moses Seward, of Gooseberry Cove, Heart’s Ease, arrived here this morning in his schooner. He has given up fishing there and will fish out of St. John’s the rest of the season.

April 28, 1909

Not Always Asleep – Special to Evening Telegram.

Dear Sir:- It may be of interest to your readers to know that we are not always asleep here. The Methodists have commenced building a new church, and in connection with this they had a tea on Easter Monday. The tables were presided over by the following:- Mrs. Reuben Martin, Mrs. W.T. Benson, Mrs. Newman Frost, Mrs. Joseph Green, Mrs. Aaron Storey, Mrs. Albert Howse, Mrs. Philemon Green, Mrs. David Frost.

We cannot speak too highly of the above ladies, they deserve our best praise. We also thank those who donated cake, etc. Tickets were sold at the door, and the amount realised was eighteen dollars and twenty-fice cents ($18.25).

Northern Bight, April 22nd, 1909.


May 3, 1909

Here and There – Note of Thanks – Mr. W. J. Frost, of Northern Bight, wishes to thank the many friends who by messages and letters expressed their sympathy in the great loss he and his family have sustained in the death of their father. Many thanks are also due those who by giving wreaths and helping in many other ways have lightened the burden they had to bear.


October 18, 1909

Another Schr. Missing.

The schooner Seven Brothers, Skipper Daniel Shaw, left Heart’s Ease, T. B. Sunday last, and up to Saturday night had not arrived here. She is a vessel of 35 tons, had a load of fish on board. And the captain, his three sons, and two others formed the crew, and it is thought that there were also some passengers on board. The captain of the schooner British Empire, which left Trinity, Thursday, was informed of arrival here that the vessel was not to be seen, and he has grave misgivings about her.


October 20, 1909

Seven Brothers Safe.

The schr. Seven Brothers which left Random, T. B., Sunday week, and was reported to be missing while bound to this port was blown off the shore like the schr. Candace in the storm of Thursday last, and had a rough time of it; she also had her canvas torn, got a bad drubbing, and had to run back to the home port for repairs.



Transcribed by Wanda Garrett and Lester Green, September 2014

Updated April 2015; January 2016; October 2016

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