Thursday, December 14, 2017

Salmon Cove Booklet Launch

Booklet contributors with editor at the booklet launch. Left to right: Jim Parsons, Don Case, Katie Harvey, Berk Reynolds, Art Kelloway. Photo courtesy The Compass. 

On Tuesday I travelled to Salmon Cove to launch the latest booklet in our Oral History Roadshow Series titled Down in the Sands: Boyhood Memories of Salmon Cove. This is the fourth booklet in this series and it focuses on the memories of five men who grew up in Salmon Cove. The booklet was well-received, and copies are flying off the shelves. 

If you would like to download a PDF copy of the booklet, click here.

-Katie Harvey

Aviation Heritage and Tourism with Abby Moss

Abby Moss was born and raised in Gander, NL. She has studied Communications and History at Memorial University of Newfoundland. She began her career as a seasonal worker at the North Atlantic Aviation Museum in 2013, and she has just finished her fifth summer with the museum. Doing work from creating exhibits to digitizing archives, she now holds the role as Tour Coordinator with Beyond Words Tour, a 9/11 tour of Gander. She has represented the museum at a local level with on the Gander Heritage Advisory Committee, and most recently on an international level in Azores, Portugal where she was the sole Canadian participant in the academic conference, where she presented on behalf of the North Atlantic Aviation Museum. We chat about her work, the tours, and her recent trip.

Download the mp3

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Heritage Update Dec 2017 - exploring NL's tangible and intangible heritage

PF-357.0072 Richard Stoker Slide Collection 26 July 1960

In the September-December issue of the Heritage Update: a look at the Romanesque churches of Bishop Ronald MacDonald; two generations of memories from downtown St. John's collected as part of the Collective Memories program; notes on the Pilley's Island United Church graveyard; an invitation to the Basic Folklore and Oral History course we'll be running in January; the Booklet Launch of  "Down in the Sands: Boyhood Memories of Salmon Cove"; our 13th Annual Heritage Places Poster Contest; notes on a birch broom made by Nigola “Nickly” Jeddore, of Conne River; Czech gingerbread for St. Nicolas Day; and an invite to learn cross stitching!

Download the pdf here.

Man With Seal #FolklorePhoto

Sealing has always been an essential part of Newfoundland and Labrador's culture. The aboriginal peoples were the first to hunt seal; the fat rendered into oil for heat and light, their skin and fur used for clothing, and the meat consumed. Here we have a photo of a man with a white coat seal, photo courtesy of the Logy Bay-Middle Cove-Outer Cove Museum. 

-Katie Harvey

Monday, December 11, 2017

#CollectiveMemories Monday - Spaniard's Bay Folk Cures with Jeanette Russell

Spaniard's Bay. 30-E. Rev. Edwin Hunt photographs. Geography Collection of historical photographs of Newfoundland and Labrador. Courtesy of Memorial University's Digital Archives Initiative.
On August 8th, 2017, as part of the Collective Memories project and our work with the Spaniard's Bay Heritage Society, I interviewed Jeanette Russell about growing up in Spaniard’s Bay and her recollections of folk cures and home remedies including memories of midwives and the health benefits of May snow.

Jeanette grew up with four siblings in the 1950s and 1960s on Bishop’s Cove Shore in Spaniard’s Bay. She described children’s games like tiddley and red rover and how she would would play and create a cobbyhouses [copyhouses or cubbies]. Jeannette also discusses the folk cures from her childhood and remedies she learned from her in-laws. She even describes having the warts charmed off her hands and explains how to make bread poultices.

If you would like to listen to the full interview on Memorial University's Digital Archives Initiative click here or you can check out the pdf of our folk cures booklet here.

~Terra Barrett

Friday, December 8, 2017

A Month of Christmas Baking: Devil Bars #FoodwaysFriday

Photo by Katie Harvey.

The Christmas cookies I remember best from my childhood were affectionately nicknamed "Devil Bars" by my family. They were called this due to the fact that whenever my mother made them they were impossible to stop eating because they were so delicious. The base of this cookie is shortbread, a thick layer of caramel lies in the middle, and the bar is topped with milk chocolate.

I always make Devil Bars over Christmas, and this year is no acceptation. They freeze well and are easy to make. The caramel is the trickiest part, but using condensed milk makes it much easier than making it from scratch, and it may even be more delicious. I find it is best to make them the day before and leave them to chill in the fridge overnight.

Here is my recipe:

  • 2/3 cup butter, softened 
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 C).
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together 2/3 cup butter, white sugar, and flour until evenly crumbly. Press into a 9 inch square baking pan. Bake for 20 minutes.
  3. In a 2 quart saucepan, combine 1/2 cup butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, and sweetened condensed milk. Bring to a boil. Continue to boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon for about 3 minutes. Pour over baked crust (warm or cool). Cool until it begins to firm.
  4. Place chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat for 1 minute, then stir and continue to heat and stir at 20 second intervals until chocolate is melted and smooth. Pour chocolate over the caramel layer and spread evenly to cover completely. Chill in the fridge overnight.
Have you ever eaten this cookie? What do you call them?

-Katie Harvey

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Beware the Christmas Terror - The Hobby Horse Podcast!

Dale Jarvis, Terra Barrett, and Ryan Davis (plus bonus Yeti!)

Ryan Davis has been running the Mummers Festival since 2009. He holds an MA in Folklore and a BA in Communication Studies. It was his interest in festivals, celebrations, and costuming that led him to mummering traditions. The Mummers Festival promotes the continuation and evolution of traditional arts and performance by encouraging active participation in mummering activities. The Mummers Festival helps to keep mummering alive and contemporary.

One of the traditions the Mummers Festival has helped to safeguard is the hobby horse. With its devilish spirit and snapping jaws, it might not be the first thing one associates with the season of comfort and joy, but it is a centuries-old part of the Yuletide season in Newfoundland and Labrador. In this podcast, we chat with Ryan about all things hobby horse!

Basic Folklore and Oral History Interviewing Course starts Jan!

Frances Densmore with Blackfoot chief, Mountain Chief, during a 1916 phonograph recording session for the Bureau of American Ethnology.

Wednesday Nights
January 10th - January 31st, 2018

Calling all budding folklorists and armchair historians! This workshop is open to anyone with an interest in local history, culture and folklore, and who wishes to learn more about safeguarding our cultural heritage through the medium of oral histories.

The course will give a background on conducting research interviews in the field. It will provide an overview of the methodology and explore the practical matters of creating, designing, and executing effective oral history research projects, project planning, interview questions, ethical issues, and recording equipment.

Over the four week course, participants will conduct an interview, prepare archival metadata, and work collaboratively to create a finished oral history project.

The workshop will be taught by folklorist Dale Jarvis, the Intangible Cultural Heritage Development Officer for the province of Newfoundland and Labrador. He has been working for the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador since 1996, and holds a BSc in Anthropology/Archaeology from Trent University, and a MA in Folklore from Memorial University.

Participants will need to bring their own laptop/tablet, all other materials provided. If you have your own digital recording device (tablet, iPhone, mp3 recorder, etc) you are encouraged to bring it, but it is not required.

Workshop fee: $100 (preregistration required, limited to 8 participants)
Location: Newman Building, 1 Springdale Street, St. John’s

Register online at:

For more information, contact Dale Jarvis at 709-739-1892 x2, or email

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

"Down in the Sands: Boyhood Memories of Salmon Cove" Booklet Launch

Please join the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador, in partnership with the Salmon Cove Future Development Association, in launching Down in the Sands: Boyhood Memories of Salmon Cove on Tuesday, December 12 at 2:00pm at the Salmon Cove Community Centre (SCPC Fire Department) on Main Road. Copies of the booklet will be available at the event. We hope to see you there!