The Amer­i­can Man and some spots in Til­ton


Many may know them by the name inuk­shuk, but in Spa­niard’s Bay they were called the Amer­i­can Man.

There were three of them: one on the south side of Long Pond, Til­ton, in an area where the slide path went up over the pond; the south­east cor­ner of Spi­der Pond and the north­west bight of Spi­der Pond.

Back in the time of Re­spon­si­ble Gov­ern­ment broth­ers Ed­ward and David Brown were paid the sum of $50 to build them. Only one, at the north­west bight of Spi­der Pond re­mains.

They were built for weather pur­poses - sense of di­rec­tion dur­ing very stormy weather con­di­tions.

Men from Til­ton, Spa­niard’s Bay, Up­per Is­land Cove and River­head would go in over Long Pond and from there in over Spi­der Pond with horse and slide to cut fire­wood, rails and stakes, etc. for their per­sonal use. While trav­el­ling over said ponds with their horse and slide dur­ing ad­verse weather con­di­tions, the piles of rocks known as the Amer­i­can Man, would be their land­marks in or­der to find their way up and down over the two ponds, more es­pe­cially Spi­der Pond.

The Amer­i­cans were good friends of New­found­land back in the early 1900s, par­tic­u­larly dur­ing the days of Re­spon­si­ble Gov­ern­ment. They fished dur­ing those days along the coast of Labrador.

While fish­ing they would erect piles of rocks in dif­fer­ent ar­eas along the coast­line to mark the good fish­ing grounds.

When our an­ces­tors be­gan fish­ing the Labrador coast, they no­ticed the large piles of rocks and later found out they were erected by the Amer­i­cans, and why they erected them.

When the fish­er­men came home in the late fall af­ter fish­ing all sum­mer, they de­cided to build the three piles of rocks to guide them up and down over Long Pond and Spi­der Pond dur­ing stormy con­di­tions. Tak­ing into con­sid­er­a­tion the fact the piles of rocks they saw on the Labrador Coast were built by the Amer­i­cans they de­cided that a good name for them would be The Amer­i­can Man. That name re­mains to­day, more es­pe­cially with the older gen­er­a­tion who trav­elled back and forth over the ponds in ear­lier years.


Here are some points of in­ter­est about the com­mu­nity of Til­ton.

An area in the west end of the com­mu­nity was re­ferred to as the Paris. A few fam­i­lies by the name of Fitzger­alds lived in that area, i. e. John Joseph,

Thomas and Gerry.

The Bat­tery, or Up on the Hill, was lo­cated in the north­west end of the com­mu­nity.

Bet Nearys Plain was on the north side of Long Pond. In early years many peo­ple from Til­ton and Spa­niard’s Bay would go there to pick blue­ber­ries, par­tridge­ber­ries and squash berries.

The old road that went out over Til­ton Bar­rens to River­head in the early 1900s passed by an area known as the Muskrat Bog where there was a hole of good drink­ing spring wa­ter. Many peo­ple trav­el­ling there would stop for a drink.

The Old Horse is a very large rock mea­sur­ing about 8 by 8 feet at the base, and ap­prox­i­mately 10 feet high. It is lo­cated a short dis­tance from the Muskrat Bog on the same old road go­ing to River­head.

The Bully’s Boo Hole: there was an old road that went in over the bar­rens be­tween Long Pond and Round Pond. It passed by what was known as the Bully’s Hole - a large rock cliff with a hole in the cen­tre. A per­son could get down in it and hide away.

The old road from Bully’s Boo Hole con­tin­ued on and passed by what was in early years known as Mor­ris­erys Spring. This was a large hole of good clear drink­ing wa­ter. Peo­ple trav­el­ling in and out over the old road would stop for a drink of the cool, clear spring wa­ter. From in­for­ma­tion avail­able, it ap­pears that a man by the name of Mor­ris­ery dis­cov­ered it.

The Big Head was a large round piece of land shaped like a big head. It is lo­cated in the north­east cor­ner of Big Pond, Til­ton.

An­other big round hill lo­cat- ed to the south west of Big Pond, Til­ton, be­tween Til­ton and what was then known as God­denville was called the Buck Hill. In early years many peo­ple would travel in that area to pick berries. There was also an old horse and cart road, called Bone­yards Road that went from Til­ton to God­denville. It passed by a short dis­tance from the Buck Hill. In the early 1900s the Angli­can min­is­ter would travel that road across the coun­try as a short cut from the Angli­can Church in God­denville to the Angli­can Church at Til­ton for church ser­vice.

Shutes Hill is lo­cated be­tween Hutch­ing Lane and the house owned by the late John Vokey, and in later years by the late Ja­cob Vokey.

Ger­ald Crane is a mem­ber of the Spa­niard’s Bay Her­itage So­ci­ety

Photo sub­mit­ted

AMER­I­CAN MAN - The ‘man’ was a marker built from rock to help guide peo­ple dur­ing bad weather. This par­tic­u­lar ‘man’ is one of three near Spi­der Pond, re­puted to have been built by broth­ers Dave Brown, Dec. 3, 1892-July 2, 1939 and Ed­ward Brown, Feb. 14, 1891-Feb. 2, 1968. Last year Ger­ald Crane had this photo taken with the one re­main­ing Amer­i­can Man.

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