Page 88 - Bill MacRitchie and Early Flight
ISSUE : Issue 55
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1990/8/1
they didn't even put the effort into it. The fellows from Glace Bay and New Wa? terford or the North- side. Our people put more by far in it. But Sydney wanted to claim the honour of it being in Sydney. And even in the story recently that was in the Cape Breton Post about Beryl Markham-- she died down in Af? rica. But they were bringing it back-- (saying) she was go? ing to Sydney. There was no connection with Sydney, because Sydney didn't have (an air? port) - -nobody then even con? sidered it was Sydney. It was Reserve--that's where the airport was. (And was that where she was headed?) Well no, she wasn't, not really. (Reserve) was the only place that there was an airport. An airfield, not an airport, be? cause it was just an old fly? ing field. But when she got across the Atlantic, I think she was so damn glad to get where there was dry land un? der her, and she saw this bog in Baleine, and Baleine was flat. She didn't know whether it was flat or what, or whether it was bog or solid ground, but she was glad to get down. She was supposed to be headed for New York, and she couldn't possibly, with her fuel thing. She was very lucky, with head winds and everything, to get across at all. She was quite a cheeky old girl. I think she was as much male as she was female, honestly; I've seen pictures of her and whatnot. I think she was a bit of an old bag, too. I mean, she was still quite the girl. She was capa? ble, very capable. She was headed for New York. I don't know if she even knew of the existence of the Cape Breton Flying Field. (But) there was only one aerodrome in Nova Scotia, and it was there. (But your point regarding Reserve Mines-- you haven't made that point clear for me yet. What is it we're trying to say?) I'm trying to say is that, the point that the Top: Bill MacRitchie. Above: Mr. & Mrs. L. B. "Bricky" Stevenson operation was not from Sydney, any more than the first flight was from Sydney. The first flight (in Canada) was in Baddeck. And the first flying field (in Nova Scotia) was at Reserve Mines. That's where it was. And the present flying field is still at Reserve Mines. Reserve Mines is the place that deserves the credit because that's--it was quite a thriving community in that time. A couple of the coal mines were there, and there were a lot of people in there. And it didn't deserve to be neglect? ed or put second to the fact that Sydney-- it's not Sydney at all. No way. (It was Re? serve Mines.) Reserve Mines, yeah. I Dr. Joe Walker, Sydney, introduced us to Bill MacRitchie. The only key to trouble-free and long car life is regular and careful maintenance. For over 25 years, maintenance • solely of European cars • has been our occupation. If you don't wish to maintain your car, neither do we!! If you do, we'd like to help!! EUROCAR SERVICE LTD. 649 WESTMOUNT ROAD SYDNEY 564-9721
Cape Breton's Magazine