Adapted from over a dozen recorded interviews with those who have most intimately seen and shaped the evolution of the Port of St. John’s, A Beautiful Sight is a unique glimpse into one of the most storied harbours in North America. The picturesque port is an enduring symbol of Newfoundlanders’ inextricable link to the sea. Indeed, it was the geographic features of St. John’s harbour that encouraged initial settlement here, the starting point from which the city expanded. But the legacy of the growth of the port is a unique history unto itself. Playing a major role in the international salt fish trade, the port has been a safe haven for fishermen in the North Atlantic since at least the 1500s and it later proved a strategic position in WW11 during the Battle of the Atlantic. Since then, it has successfully evolved for newer industries and technologies, most notably as a supply base for offshore oilfields as well the largest containerized cargo handling port in Newfoundland and Labrador. Commemoration the fiftieth anniversary of the port’s incorporation under the federal government’s jurisdiction, this book traces the oral history of the port in the twentieth century.
Collected by Allan Byrne with a foreword by Sean Hanrahan