Heart’s Con­tent Cable Sta­tion cel­e­brates mile­stone


The world cheered as the un­der­sea com­mu­ni­ca­tions cable con­nect­ing North Amer­ica and Europe was fi­nally hauled ashore at Heart’s Con­tent on July 27, 1866.

Last Wed­nes­day, 145 years later, the Heart’s Con­tent Cable Sta­tion cel­e­brated this mile­stone yet again.

The guest speaker, Ted Rowe, grew up in Heart’s Con­tent, but left when he was 16. Fol­low­ing a ca­reer as a univer­sity pro­fes­sor, real es­tate bro­ker and mu­si­cian, he now lives in St. John’s.

Heroes and rogues

Rowe, who is a pub­lished au­thor, used the oc­ca­sion to of­fi­cially launch his lat­est book, “Heroes and Rogues and the Story of Heart’s Con­tent.”

While re­search­ing his first book, “ Con­nect­ing the Con­ti­nents: Heart’s Con­tent and the At­lantic Cable,” Rowe read about in­di­vid­u­als who, in his words, “can only be de­scribed as rogues.”

His lat­est book, which he calls a “com­mu­nity his­tory,” in­cor­po­rates the sto­ries of some of the rogues he dis­cov­ered.

He piqued his au­di­ence’s at­ten­tion by dis­cussing three of the per­son­al­i­ties in his book — Henry Lind, Frank Smart and Hugh Facey — leav­ing it to them to place them in ei­ther the hero or rogue camp.

Rowe’s work­ing on an­other book idea. How­ever, he re­fused to di­vulge

the topic, for fear the pro­ject doesn’t come to fruition. One thing is known: “I think we’ve about cov­ered Heart’s Con­tent,” he says.

Live en­ter­tain­ment on the sta­tion grounds was pro­vided by John and the Boys, made up of Chris Snel­grove, Howard Soo­ley, John War­ren and Doug Card. Snel­grove, Soo­ley and Card are from Heart’s De­light, and War­ren is from Heart’s Con­tent.

Con­tact­ing the world

The Up­per Trin­ity Ama­teur Ra­dio Club sta­tion has a per­ma­nent pres­ence at the Heart’s Con­tent cable sta­tion.

“ Var­i­ous mem­bers drop in when­ever they have a chance,” says club trea­surer Rendyl God­win. “ If prop­a­ga­tion and at­mo­spheric con­di­tions are good, I can po­ten­tially make con­tacts with peo­ple through­out the world. “

The hobby is made per­sonal for the cu­ri­ous visi­tor who wants to get in­volved.

“ If some­body’s in­ter­ested, we can put them on the air,” God­win says, adding, “as long as there’s a li­censed ama­teur phys­i­cally here.”

Pro­vin­cial his­toric sites man­ager Gerry Os­mond re­ferred to the event as “truly a com­mu­nity event. Peo­ple come out and re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate this build­ing and what it did in the com­mu­nity.”

Ted Rowe sign­ing a copy of his lat­est book, “Heroes and Rogues and the Story of Heart’s Con­tent,” for Dorothy Sinyard.

Rendyl God­win, trea­surer of the Up­per Trin­ity Ama­teur Ra­dio Club, gives a demon­stra­tion.

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