Showing posts with label stones. Show all posts
Showing posts with label stones. Show all posts

Thursday, September 12, 2013

A trip to Indian Rock, Petty Harbour

I've been doing a little bit of digging into the folklore surrounding this glacial erratic in Petty Harbour, Newfoundland. Locally, it is known as Indian Rock, Injun Rock, and Engine Rock. Based on a historic photograph in the Centre for Newfoundland Studies, Indian Rock is probably the historic name, with "Injun" and then "Engine" being later reinterpretations of the name.

It is also referred to in a couple places as a logan stone, from an old English or Cornish word meaning to rock back and forth.  The earliest reference to Indian Rock as a logan stone is from William Grey's Sketches of Newfoundland and Labrador, (Ipswich, England: S. H. Cowell, Anastatic Press, 1858). Accompanying a sketch of Petty Harbour, Grey writes,
"On the hill opposite the church is a curious rock, which Druidical antiquaries would call a Logan stone."

This name for the rock was referenced in an article by folklorist Philip Hiscock in 1998 (Downhomer, 11.5 pp 18-19) and then later by popular Newfoundland author Jack Fitzgerald in 2009 (Remarkable Stories of Newfoundland, Creative Publishers, pp 3-5).

I'd love to know anything people remember about this rock, particularly about the origin of the name Indian Rock. If you have a memory or a story, email me at

- Dale Jarvis