Showing posts with label Heart's Content. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Heart's Content. Show all posts

Thursday, July 21, 2022

Heart’s Content Rendell Forge Opening Hours July 27 – Aug 5, 2022

Rendell Forge

Heart’s Content Rendell Forge Opening Hours July 27 – Aug 5, 2022
Our blacksmith for this summer, Sarah MacAulay, is currently doing training in Ontario and will be opening the forge July 27, just in time for Come Home Out Of It activities in Heart's Content. Please see the following schedule and share with friends!

Sarah MacAulay, Blacksmith Apprentice.

(Note: The Rendell Forge, Main Road, Heart’s Content, has been recently restored by the Heart’s Content Mizzen Heritage Society and Heritage NL with financial assistance from the provincial government’s Come Home Year 2022 funding. It will be closed from July 2-26 for blacksmith training and will be open to the public during the following times. Watch for more openings for later in August.)

July 27, 2-6 pm

July 28, 10-3 pm*

July 29, 10-1pm

July 30, closed

July 31, 2-6 pm (3-4 pm demo basic hooks and points) 

August 1, 9-4 pm (11-1 pm demo one prong fire poker) *

August 2, 11-1 pm (demo basic knife blade)

August 3, 11-1 pm (demo scroll work/decorative spiral work)

August 4, 11-1 pm (demo fire poker)

August 5, 11-1 pm (demo fine work- hair pins)

*The forge will be closed from 1-2 pm for lunch each day

To learn more about the history of the Rendell Forge, and the Rendell family of blacksmiths read our fieldnote about the forge here!

Ian Gillies and Sarah MacAulay. 

Ian Gillies, Blacksmith Mentor.

Monday, July 26, 2021

Explore to your Heart’s Content with this self-guided walking tour

In 1612, John Guy of Cupids visited Heart’s Content, calling it an “excellent good place for fishing.” Over the next 300 years Heart’s Content grew into a thriving community, but it was the landing of the trans-Atlantic cable in 1866 that changed the world and gave Heart’s Content international status as the first gateway of communication between Europe and North America. 

This year, new visitors to the community can explore the town’s history by walking in the footsteps of fishermen, plantation owners, shipbuilders, and cable workers. 

Working in partnership with Heritage NL, the Heart’s Content Community Development Corporation, has produced a self-guided walking tour pamphlet for visitors and staycationers exploring the historic Trinity Bay town. 

“Visitors to Heart’s Content have a natural curiosity about the cable station and the many styles of buildings in the surrounding area,” says Ted Rowe, Chair of the Heart’s Content Community Development Corporation.”

“This section of the town was designated a Registered Heritage District a few years ago and now we have a detailed map to guide them through the area and highlighting points of interest.  The tour gives a feel for Heart’s Content as it was over a hundred years ago and enhances the historical appeal of the town.”

The release of the walking tour map is part of Heritage NL’s mission to promote a better understanding of the historic places of the province. 

“Registered Historic Districts highlight the culture and significance of a place by showcasing and preserving the natural and architectural significance of that area,” says Heritage NL chair Dr. Lisa Daly. 

“Town or district maps, such as this one, share that with the community and visitors alike. Heritage NL is pleased to be able to partner with communities like Heart's Content to create such programs and initiatives.”

Printed copies of the map are available for curious walkers and heritage enthusiasts free-of-charge at the Baccalieu Gallery, located in the heart of the district, beside the Heart’s Content Cable Station Provincial Historic Site. Digital copies can also be downloaded for printing at home from the Heritage NL website ( 

View the map:

Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador (Heritage NL) was established in 1984 to stimulate an understanding of and an appreciation for the historic places and intangible cultural heritage of the province. 


To arrange an interview, contact

Dale Jarvis, Executive Director
Heritage NL


Tuesday, July 28, 2020

The Death of Mrs. Leah Rendell, Heart's Content, 1913

Yesterday, we posted a story by Ted Rowe about the Rendell Forge and a picture as it was in 2003. Above is a photo I took of the same building.  You can see the roofline has changed, and the siding was replaced with cedar shakes (shingles). The trees have grown up dramatically behind the building.

The other photo that Ted shared was of the Rendell boys at the time of their mother's funeral in 1913. Below is a copy of the article that ran in the Evening Telegram, 1913-09-30:

We will have more on the Rendell Forge in the future! 

Monday, November 4, 2019

A Traditional Bonfire Night in Heart's Content - by Claude Rockwood

A Traditional Bonfire Fire

About a month or so before bonfire night a crowd of us, boys and girls ages 8-10, from the Northern Point would rush home from school every day and head for the woods. While the boys cut trees and boughs, the girls would drag them to the wide open field located up behind Uncle Albert and Aunt Lydia’s house (no relation). Believe it or not, but all this was done without grown-up supervision. Then we would pile them as high as we could pile them.

Bonfires could be seen all over the Harbour - Southern Cove, Rockwood’s Room, Rowe’s Bank, and Up the Backway. Now the big thing was to gather up as many boughs and trees as you could so you would have the biggest bonfire in the Harbour.

After the bonfire was over, we would all go to Uncle Albert and Aunt Lydia’s house  for a big scoff of pork and cabbage. For the scoff, we would all bring along some vegetables- cabbage, potatoes, carrot and, of course, each of us would have their own piece of salt meat. Aunt Lydia would supply scoff  vegetables from her own garden, as well. Everyone would sit around and have a fine old feed and chat about anything that came to mind. And you know, the smell of smoke from our clothes didn’t seem to bother them at all. I think Uncle Albert and Aunt Lydia were only too glad to be able to take part in the bonfire night with us children.

Bonfire night went on for several years until Aunt Lydia died in 1947.

This story was related to me, Claude Rockwood, by Mary (Mame) Burrage ( nee Piercey ) who grew up on the Northern Point, Heart's Content. Albert and Lydia Langer were my maternal grandparents.

Photo:  Bonfire Night, Porterville, Newfoundland, 2010, courtesy of Barry Porter. 

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Heart’s Content in Pictures - The Old Time Photo Show!

Heart’s Content in Pictures 
The Old Time Photo Show!

Heart's Content Regional Centre for the Arts
(the former Hayfield United Church)
251 Main Rd, Heart's Content, NL

August 13th, 7pm

Join us as we present historical photos showcasing the fascinating history of Heart’s Content.  Many of these are rare old photos that  have been recently digitized as part of an ongoing project to scan the photographic collection of the Town of Heart’s Content archives.   You’ll see some places you remember, and some long gone.  Celebrate the history of the town in photographic form!

Sponsored by Hearts Content Mizzen Heritage Society

Free Event
Coffee, tea and cookies to follow.

Facebook event listing here:

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Building Heritage Together: Heart’s Content to Hant’s Harbour Heritage Area

Public event in Winterton.
On Saturday, November 3rd, 2018 Dale, Jerry, and I traveled to Winterton to host a workshop on regional corporation.  We also had several students from Memorial University's Folklore Department who came out and took notes for the session. There were over 40 people in attendance from various museums, heritage committees, town councilor, and residents from Heart's Content, New Perlican, Winterton, and Hant's Harbour. The communities are interested in working together to promote their heritage.

Folklorist Dale Jarvis listening to the conversation at one of the tables.
We discussed the success factors which come from working together and listed some of the resources the differing groups would be able to share. The different groups also listed some of the heritage assets in their communities which ranged from museums to fishing stages, from cemeteries to trails. It also included traditional skills such as rug hooking, dancing, knitting, blacksmithing, fishing, sawmilling, etc. The towns decided to form a regional committee and will meet before Christmas. Stay tuned for a report from the meeting. 

Katie presents her table's thoughts on how the communities should move forward.
If you are interested to in setting up a heritage workshop in your community reach out to Dale Jarvis at or call 1-888-739-1892 ex. 2.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Rectory and St. Mary's Anglican Church #FolklorePhoto

Photo courtesy Heart's Content Mizzen Heritage Society. 

This week's #FolklorePhoto is of the rectory(c. 1890-1954) and St. Mary's Anglican Church (1884-1989) in Heart's Content. Unfortunately, the church was destroyed by fire in May of 1989. 

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Download the Architectural Inventory of Heart's Content Heritage District

In late November, the Heritage Foundation staff members travelled to Heart's Content to launch Architectural Inventory: Heart's Content Heritage District. This inventory was conducted by Eddy O'Toole, a past student with the foundation, and myself.

The inventory took months to research and compile; containing architectural inventories of the various pre-confederation properties in the Heart's Content Heritage District, as well as the intangible information that was learned through oral history interviews with older community members.

If you would like to read the inventory, click here to access the PDF.

-Katie Harvey

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Do you know this building in Heart's Content? #Folklorephoto

Do you recognize this building in Heart's Content? This photograph was taken in 1994 and is part of the Baccalieu Trail Heritage Corporation slide collection.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Memories of Historic Places: Proposal at the Cable Station

The Heart's Content Cable Station was constructed in 1876 by J.J. Southcott, a prominent St John's architect. The station was required to support the operation of the first transatlantic cable that connected Europe and North America.

The building has a rich history within the community, as many locals remember working at the station or knew someone who did. Bob Balsom recalls a story about a young couple who once visited the station:

“Yeah, there was an interesting story. This young man and his fiancĂ©, we didn’t know they were about to get married or anything, but we had an area there where you could tap messages on a key, back and forth on a large table. And anyway, he went and tapped a message because, you know, they could interpret the message because we had the Morse Code there on both ends of the table that you could read and do the dashes and dots and so on. Anyway he tapped out a message, ‘Will you marry me?’ and she was on the other end. She started yelling and crying. So you know of course she said yes, and they wrote that on our guestbook as they went out.”

The building has been designated a Provincial Historic Site, and has been transformed into a public museum.

If you have a memory of a historic place that you would like to share please contact Katie via email or via telephone (709) 739-1892 ext. 7.

-Katie Harvey

Monday, July 10, 2017

#CollectiveMemories Monday - "The first thing I did was climb the mizzen..."

Patricia Cumby, May 2017.
On May 15, 2017, as part of the Collective Memories project, I interviewed Patricia Cumby about her memories of moving to Newfoundland from the UK, living in Heart's Content, and some of the trouble she got into as a child.

Patricia arrived in Gander in a snow storm and had to spend a couple of nights there before the family could make their way to Heart's Content where her father was stationed to work as a doctor. She told the story of getting fitted out for the Newfoundland winter and in this audio clip you can hear about her first adventure in Heart's Content - climbing the mizzen. Patricia explained the mizzen is a small hill in Heart's Content named because ships entering the community could see it from the mizzen-mast up in the crow's nest. Patricia's full interview can be found on Memorial's Digital Archives Initiative.

~Terra Barrett

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

#Folklorephoto A 'Cathedral Window' Quilt by Joan Smith

A beautiful detail of a 'Cathedral Window' quilt made by Joan Smith and used in her home. In 2013, the Heritage Foundations Lisa Wilson interviewed Joan and her husband George, primarily about growing up in Heart's Content. While at their home, Lisa took photos of some examples of Joan's quilts and hooked rugs. The interview and photos are part of the Heart's Content section of the ICH-Avalon Peninsula Fonds on MUN's DAI .

Click on the link below to listen to the interview:
Smith, Joan and George 1. Interview about growing up in Heart's Content. 

Monday, January 16, 2017

#CollectiveMemories Monday - Growing Up in a Cable Town

As part of the Heart's Content Cable Conference, Saturday, September 10th, 2016, we recorded a funny, charming, and nostalgic look back at growing up in a cable town. The talk was an on-stage conversation between Ted Rowe and Wallace Rendell, recorded at the Heart’s Content Regional Centre for the Arts (Heyfield Memorial Church). 

The two gentlemen swapped stories about the family histories of the Rendells and Rowes; differences between cable staff families and local families; the cable station library and its impact on literacy and education; childhood pastimes and swimming; card games; milking goats; memories of early televisions and TV sets; the post office and mail coming from Carbonear by horse and sleigh; and the impact of the cable station on town life.

You can listen to their chat, with an introduction by Joan Ritcey, right here. 

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Heart's Content Graveyard Mapping Workshop and Cemetery Clean Up

UPDATE 4 July 2024 - Heritage NL no longer recommends doing headstone rubbings - over time it can damage the stone. 

Guest blog post by Celeste Billung-Meyer a Folklore student working with the Heritage Foundation this summer:

Last Saturday (July 16 th , 2016), I attended the Graveyard Mapping Workshop and Clean Up in Heart’s Content. It was an event co-organized by the Heritage Foundation and Youth Heritage in order to help Heart’s Content get ready for their 150th anniversary of the first successful landing of a trans Atlantic cable.

We had a fantastic turn out! The majority of our volunteers gathered at the Heritage Foundation for 9 am, where we got on a bus and drove to Heart’s Content. When we arrived and met up with the rest of the volunteers, the weather looked dubious; however, much to our delight, within the hour the sun came out and the day ended up being gorgeous and warm!
Practising gravestone rubbing.
For the morning, the group was split between two activities. One group started cleaning up the cemetery and the other group went with Terra who led a workshop about grave rubbing. As it happened, there was no tracing paper to be bought anywhere in St. John’s during the days leading up to the workshop and so Terra resolved to use exam table paper (found in doctor’s offices) as a substitute.  However, the substitute paper combined with the windy morning (making it hard tape the paper tightly to the stone) lead to mixed grave rubbing results. Nonetheless, everyone came away with a working knowledge of the process and an solid understanding of the value of grave rubbing.
Cemetery cleanup.
Around noon, we were invited to a lunch provided by the Mizzen Heritage Society. Hotdogs for all! After lunch, we had the graveyard mapping workshop lead by Dale and Michael. While this type of mapping is quite a slow and painstaking process, it can be used by anyone with just a couple of tools that are cheap and easily accessible (two stakes, two tape measures, a plumb bob, graph paper, a large clip board, a geometry kit, a scale ruler and a pencil). After the demonstration, the group was split in two again and anyone who wanted to try the mapping first hand stayed with Michael and was given a chance to do so.
Dale and Sarah demonstrating how to map the graveyard.
Michael drawing out the map.

The rest of the group followed Dale on a walk around the cemetery and he explained the meaning behind the symbols on some of the graves!
Dale giving a tour of the cemetery symbols.
Once the tour ended, everyone came together to finish cleaning up the cemetery.
Photo of our wonderful volunteers and the progress of the graveyard!
We finished the day with a walk over to the Mizzen Heritage Society and then the newly renovated Heyfield Memorial United Church and Cemetery. Along the way, we learned a bit about the history of Heart’s Content, some of the ghost lore of the area and a bit about what the Heritage Foundation and Youth Heritage are up to in the next couple of months!

Learning about Heart's Content's history.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Free Graveyard Mapping Workshop - July 16th

Measuring the distance between graves.
The Heritage Foundations of Newfoundland and Labrador, in partnership with Youth Heritage NL, is looking for your help in getting Heart's Content ready for their 150th Anniversary Commemoration Celebration "Connected and Contented"!

We are organizing a cemetery mapping and cleanup for July 16. The mapping workshop will take place in the morning, followed by at short lunch provided by the Mizzen Heritage Society and HFNL, then a cleanup of the cemetery before taking the bus back to St. John's. Help HFNL and YHNL cleanup the cemetery and learn how to map in the process!

There will be a bus leaving 1 Springdale Street, St. John's at 9am and returning around 4pm.

 9:00-10:30 - Travel to Heart's Content
10:30-12:00 - Mapping the cemetery
12:00-12:45 - Lunch!
12:45- 3:30 - Cemetery cleanup
 3:30- 5:00 - Travel back to St. John's

Of course this is not limited to volunteers from St. John's. If you are interested in helping, please contact us at and we will provide details (transportation may not be included depending on your location).

This is an outdoor, hands-on activity, so please have appropriate clothing, workboots, gloves, hats, sunblock, bug spray, etc.

If you want to get involved register here for this free workshop.
Plotting the graves on a map.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

#NLHeritage Road Trip

Heart's Content Graveyard
My name is Terra Barrett and I have worked with the Heritage Foundation for the last two summers. I am back again working with the Intangible Cultural Heritage Office on a new project called Collective Memories. Stay tuned for more information about this project in the coming weeks as I will be updated the blog with updates about the work of the ICH Office over the summer.
Dale, Andrea, and Michael in the graveyard
This past weekend Dale Jarvis, Andrea O’Brien, Michael Philpott, and I headed out of St. John’s for a heritage road trip with stops in Heart’s Content and New Perlican. Our first stop on Friday afternoon was the Heart’s Content graveyard where the community is looking to do some work. We had a look at the graves and the state of the grounds and discussed the possibilities of a clean up or workshop in the graveyard. After reviewing the graveyard we had a supper of hot turkey sandwiches, fish, chips, and milkshakes at Legge’s and headed on to New Perlican.
Community members at the People, Places, and Traditions workshop.
Important places in the community.
Mapping their heritage.
New Perlican’s heritage committee asked the Heritage Foundation to come out and help the committee prioritize their community heritage to do list. On Friday evening we hosted a People, Places, and Traditions workshop in order to get the people of the community thinking about the assets in their community. We had three tables set up with large maps of New Perlican and had each table focus on either the people, places, or tradition in the community.
People in the community.
Important traditions.
Reviewing the maps.
Everyone contributed ideas and wrote out their descriptions on recipe card which were then placed on the large maps. In the end we ended up with three community maps one with the important people in the community such as past lighthouse keepers and bread bakers, one with places like the sitting rock and local swimming holes, and one with traditional nicknames in the community and the tradition of using goats to haul wood from the woods. We placed these maps around the room and had a discussion of what had been identified.
Saturday we were back in New Perlican for a prioritizing session with the community's heritage committee. We whittled their wish list from twenty odd items to three major project to focus on over the next few years. After lunch we walked through the harbour in order to see where most of their work was focused. It was a productive weekend and I am looking forward to seeing where the committee takes their projects over the next few years.
Walk to the New Perlican Harbour.

Do you want a People, Places, and Traditions Workshop in your community? Or want some advice on where to go next?  We’d love to help! Contact the Intangible Culture Heritage office of the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador for more ideas or assistance.

~Terra Barrett

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Folklore Photo - Heritage Lighthouse in Heart's Content

I wrote the other day about how we took a group of public folklore grad students out to Heart's Content.  Today is folklore photo day, so here is that group of students, in front of the Heart's Content Lighthouse. The lighthouse was constructed in 1901, and is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building.

You can read more about the lighthouse here and on the Canadian Register of Historic Places.

- photos by Dale Jarvis

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Tradition in Motion: A day with the Mizzen Heritage Square Dancers

Our intangible cultural heritage office sometimes uses what we term a “project-based training” model. You can read all about that in this occasional paper.  Yesterday, we took that model on the road, with a group of Memorial University students, to Heart's Content.

Dr. Jillian Gould is an Assistant Professor within Memorial University’s Department of Folklore, whose research interests include public folklore, ethnography, and fieldwork. Since 2011, her class has been partnering with HFNL to deliver a type of project-based training as a component of the graduate public sector folklore course. Typically, graduate students organize some kind of public folklore event or workshop, a model which engages the public while teaching the students practical and varied skills in facilitation, group work, community outreach, and project planning. 

This semester, students are working on organizing a workshop on traditional Newfoundland set dancing, in cooperation with the Mizzen Heritage Square Dancers. Thos dancers will be coming into St. John's to run a workshop later in March, but I suggested that the students go out to Heart's Content, meet the dancers in advance, learn the dances, and be better able to facilitate the workshop when it happens.

So yesterday, two carloads of us drove out to Trinity Bay, and met up with the dancers of Heart's Content at the Society of United Fishermen Hall. The dancers demonstrated two dances, the old fashioned square dance, and the Lancers, and students were able to run through the square dance twice. Then everyone took part in the Virginia Reel, and finished up with a lunch prepared by the community. Students, where possible, did on-the-spot folklore interviews with many of the participants.

Some of the students had never been to Heart's Content, and the set dances were new to most of them. It was a great experience, and everyone was moved by the kindness and generosity of the folks from Heart's Content. At the end, the dancers made sure everyone left with a Heart's Content pin. It was tremendous fun, and a great way for students to see folklore in action, rather than just reading about it. 

Stay tuned for more information on the in-town workshop itself. 

Photos by Cyndi Egan.  

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The Games We Played - A Coffee and Culture Presentation

Thursday, February 27, 2:30 pm., The Rooms Provincial Museum

Hoist Your Sails and Run, Spotlight and kite flying are just a few ways that children traditionally entertained themselves in outport Newfoundland. Join folkorist Lisa Wilson as she explores these and other types of childhood play that have an important place in our living memories.

This is a multi-media presentation, but there will be a chance at the end to share some of your own memories and experiences around childhood games and experiences. Hope to see you there!

Children of Cable Ave., Bay Roberts, courtesy of Linda Sesk.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Heart's Content Plaquing Ceremony

On July 20th, 2013, community members of Heart's Content, alongside the HFNL, the Town, and the Mizzen Heritage Society, gathered to celebrate the newly designated Heart's Content Registered Heritage District. We started the event with a series of speeches that featured Mayor Don Blundon,  Frank Crews (Chairman of the HFNL), MHA Charlene Johnson, and author Ted Rowe, who aimed to highlight local heritage and commemorate the district. We then watched as Blundon and Johnson officially unveiled the bronze plaque, which now stands proudly on the Mizzen Community Museum property. It was a very exciting day for those involved with local heritage!

Community members gather in the SUF Hall.
Mayor Don Blundon and MHA Charlene Johnson unveil the new HFNL heritage district plaque.
Members of Mizzen Heritage Society pose with the new plaque.

At this event we also had an opportunity to launch our new booklet of oral historical material from Heart's Content entitled, "So Many Stories, So Many Traditions: The Heart's Content Registered Heritage District."  Please visit the following link to view a copy of this booklet and help us to celebrate this new heritage district:

Congratulations to Heart's Content and thanks for coming out to celebrate heritage!