Shambler’s Cove

History of Shamblers Cove

by Robert Cuff
Encyclopedia of Newfoundland and Labrador, 1981

SHAMBLERS COVE (pop. 1945, 34). An abandoned fishing community, Shamblers Cove was located west of Greenspond, on the mainland side of Pond Tickle. Since 1983, when a causeway was constructed between Greenspond Island and the mainland, the site of the former community, just south of the causeway, has been accessible by road. Shamblers Cove takes its name from a family name, recorded in Bonavista Bay as early as 1675.

While the cove has little shelter, low-lying fingers of rock provided berths suitable for small boats as well as a place to dry fish. It is likely that the cove had seasonal fishing rooms, maintained by residents of Greenspond, for some years prior to settlement. As the population of Greenspond approached 1500 in the mid-1800s the demand for useable shore space in the area led a few families to move to Shamblers Cove. In 1869 there were four families (the Chaffeys, Elkinses, Lashes and Vivians) and a population of 22. By 1874 these had been joined by other Greenspond families (notably the Carters, Maidments, Kings, Staggs and Whites), who engaged in the Labrador fishery and the coasting trade out of Greenspond, as well as in the inshore fishery. The peak population of 121 was recorded in 1901. Thereafter, a decline in the Labrador fishery was reflected in a decreasing population (to 89 by 1921 and 57 by 1935), as people left to work in the woods further up the Bay or in Canada. The community was abandoned in the early 1950s, the last few families moving to the Valleyfield area. John Feltham (1992), E.R. Seary (1977), Census (1869-1945), Lovell’s Newfoundland Directory (1871). RHC


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