GREAT RESPONSE TO CALL FOR INFORMATION (December 17/99)

In a column last month I asked if anyone had information on several topics, among them local Irish settlements, the Six Rod Road, Captain Joe Faulkner of Port Williams, Pickett’s Wharf and the Pine Woods. At least a dozen readers called in response to my request for assistance. Thanks to these readers the file I’ve been building on local historical topics has been fleshed out considerably. Some of the reader responses follow.

On the Irish settlements, Hazel Foote of Woodville mentioned that there was a large Irish settlement at Black Rock. Hazel said that some of the Irish families that settled in Black Rock were Sarsfields and Dohertys. Some of my great grand-father’s close relatives from Cork also settled in Black Rock.

Gerry Gerrits, Coldbrook, told me there was a small Irish settlement in Atlanta on the Lyons Branch road. George Moody, Berwick, told me about the Irish settlement near North Kingston that existed between 1880 and 1920. Moody said the settlement may have been called Clermont or Irishtown. The Irish living in this settlement may have been descendants of servants employed by Bishop Charles Inglis at his estate in Aylesford, which he called Clermont. Bishop Inglis was born in Ireland, which may explain his use of Irish servants.

On the Six Rod Road, Mildred Elliott, Canning, tells me that the deed to their property mentions it when describing boundaries. Mrs. Elliott believes that Rabbit Square, a road northwest of Canning was once part of the Six Rod Road. The Elliott house stands on an Acadian foundation and it is possible that nearby lies an Acadian cemetery.

There were two callers who offered information on Pickett’s Wharf. Lydia Phinney grew up in Canning and remembers seeing vessels coming into the wharf some 70 years ago. Lydia recalls that the Captain of one vessel had his young daughter with him and she attended school in Canning for several months. Mac Eaton, Canard, remembers that there was a picket fence on the road down to Pickett’s Wharf (hence the name?). Mac’s father hauled potatoes to ships at the wharf which were “dumped in bulk into the hold.”

On the Pine Woods, Marie Bishop of New Minas believes it may have been located on Camp Aldershot towards Steam Mill. Marie said it was an area where freed slaves settled; she recalls a reference to Camp Aldershot that referred to it as the Pine Woods. Eaton’s Kings County history refers to the Pine Woods as originally a Micmac encampment and later a black settlement north of Kentville along Cornwallis Street.

Several people called with information on the former Cornwallis River pilot, Captain Joe Faulkner, who was lost at sea. S. M. Bancroft of Black River was a school companion of Captain Faulkner’s son, Ralph. Mr. Bancroft told me that Captain Faulkner retired in Port Williams in 1936 or 1937, that he owned 20 acres in the village and his house still stands. When he became a pilot on the Cornwallis River, a position he held for several years, Captain Faulkner had a special boat built that Bancroft described as “unusual.”

When he returned to the sea during World War 2, Faulkner was captain of a freighter that disappeared on a run to South America; Faulkner’s ship is believed to have been sunk by a German U-boat.

Edna Duncanson remembers Captain Faulkner as a “wonderful man,” while Bancroft describes him as “admirable and a real character.” Keith Mahar, New Minas, called to give me the address of a Faulkner descendant.

My thanks to readers who responded to the request for assistance; your calls are appreciated.

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