From Lan­tern Shore to Bishop’s Cove

The Compass - - OPINION -

Dear ed­i­tor,

Over the years I have heard many dif­fer­ent sto­ries of how Bishop’s Cove got its name. The most prom­i­nent is that its first name was Bread and Cheese Cove. It was said the name bread and cheese orig­i­nated from a flower called the toad­flax. Please tell me how one could ar­rive at the name bread and cheese from toad­flax.

Here’s my ver­sion of how the name Bishop’s Cove orig­i­nated. This was passed down to me from my grand­fa­ther, Ge­orge F. Bar­rett, who was born at Bishop’s Cove in 1871, and died there in 1962. I guess he learned it form his grand­fa­ther, Ja­cob Bar­rett who was born at Bishop’s Cove in 1805. The first name put on Bishop’s Cove was the Lan­tern Shore. The name was de­rived from the num­ber of lanterns used to light the paths over the steep stage paths in the early hours of the morn­ing.

In the early 1800s the Angli­can Bishop used to come to the Lan­tern Shore from Nova Sco­tia. The most prom­i­nent place for a bishop to stay was at Un­cle Sam Mud­ford’s. His home was sit­u­ated on the east end of what is known as the scrape. The bishop ar­rived aboard a sail­ing schooner at Mr. Mug­ford’s wharf in the evening. His boat was tied to the wharf and the bishop went to stay with Mr. Mug­ford for the night. The next morn­ing the Bishop had breakfast and walked to the church, a dis­tance of about a mile.

Ar­riv­ing at the church and meet­ing with the con­gre­ga­tion he said he thought the com­mu­nity was too pros­per­ous to be called Lan­tern Shore. He put the name Bread and Cheese Cove on it in the name of pros­per­ity.

Around 1827 the peo­ple wanted to change the name again. But it wasn’t un­til 1842 that the name change came about. The peo­ple got to­gether and de­cided to name their com­mu­nity Bishop’s Cove in recog­ni­tion of the bishop who had named it Bread and Cheese Cove.

I am a ninth gen­er­a­tion de­scen­dent of John Bar­rett, who was born in Poole, Dorset, Eng­land in 1680. He set­tled in Bishop’s Cove on or about 1705.

I be­lieve this in­for­ma­tion, which was passed down to me from my fore­fa­thers to be fac­tual.

I hope this is a lit­tle bet­ter ex­pla­na­tion of how Bishop’s Cove got its name. Moses Bar­rett Spa­niard’s Bay

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