Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 14 > Page 21 - Life and Death of the "Aspy"

Page 21 - Life and Death of the "Aspy"

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1976/8/1 (355 reads)

cover-alls would get so hard that you couldn't bend. If vou were bent this way that's the way you got up. And odor, oh jeez, .Ind no baths, no showers. We had to go down and if the engineer was in a good mood you'd go down and get a bucket of water under the injector • raost of it was salt water but you were lucky to get half a bucket. Put one foot in, put the other foot in, wash yourself down. ,*', • ?3 m' Johnny Burton; his father. William Henry Burton; Audie Morrison Johnny Burton, Bay St. Lawrence: My father, William Henry Burton, had the job from the Nova Scotia governraent to take the freight out to the Aspy and bring in provisions. We had two boats. A gasoline boat with a 4 or 6 horsepower engine, and if there was a lot of freight we'd tow a loading boat • like a tender. She'd take around 100 bags of flour or feed into her • that is about a load. We didn't charge any? thing. The government was paying my fa? ther 500 dollars a year. And the season would start as soon as the drift ice would go • the first of April till Christmastime. Till the ice would come again. She'd corae twice a week, corae off of the cape • and Capt. MacDonald knew whatever way the wind was, if we could land. Unless there was passengers wanting to go, if it was bad we wouldn't land. Take the small boat and take out passengers. We often would try to get the boat out and she'd fill at the launchway. Well you couldn't go then. And they used to come up here in the night and land freight. Yes, I often saw us at nighttime • 11 o'clock. And there was no hauling engine to haul up the loadii:' boat. We had a capstan and a big pole would go through the centre and we'd walk round and round • four guys on each side on that stick going round, hoist it up. And we'd go out a quarter mile to meet. If there was only a little bit of freight or some passengers wanted to go • an emer? gency or something • we'd put out the lit? tle boat with the oars. You were sure you were going to get there with the oars. Figured you wouldn't get broke down. We shipped quite a lot frora here. In the fall there'd be 2 or 300 head of sheep, lambs. Quite a lot of potatoes would be shipped. Sometiraes there'd be a butcher come down from Sydney and he'd buy cattle • maybe 15 or 20 head. Sometimes they'd be butchered down here and the meat would go up to Sydney. Sometimes you'd take them alive. Ones that we couldn't load in the boat we'd tow them behind. And in the fall sometimes they'd bring so much freight they wouldn't land it all in one day. Five or six boatloads maybe land here one day then the Aspy would have to go to Dingwall and come back the next day and get clear of it. Paw only had it about 15 years. Then he was getting old and he started to get the old age pension. Then John Alex MacNeil took it, and John G. MacNeil worked with John Alex. I don't think there was much freight coraing then because the transfers Cabins & Tourist Home at Little River on the Cabot Trail 929-2880 Banana Farm the School on the Hill Quality Folkart at North River Bridge Cape Breton's Maga2ine/21
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