Fol­low­ing the In­deav­our

Her­itage group com­mem­o­rat­ing the his­toric voy­age from Cupids to Trin­ity Bay

The Compass - - P2012ORTHTE - BY TERRY ROBERTS THE COM­PASS

Her­itage en­thu­si­asts on the Bac­calieu Trail launched a unique ef­fort last week to com­mem­o­rate the 400th an­niver­sary of the his­toric voy­age of the ves­sel In­deav­our from Cupids.

The voy­age, led by colonists John Guy and Henry Crout, is de­scribed by many as a no­table point in this prov­ince’s long his­tory, since it helped doc­u­ment some of the ear­li­est ethno­graphic in­for­ma­tion on the nowex­tinct Beothuk In­di­ans, and pro­vided some of the ear­li­est de­scrip­tions of mod­ern-day places such as Bay de Verde, Ho­peall, Dildo Arm and Blake­town.

The ini­tia­tive is led by the Bac­calieu Trail Her­itage Cor­po­ra­tion, and in­cludes the un­veil­ing of his­tory boards at 10 lo­ca­tions throughout the re­gion where the In­deav­our and her ad­ven­tur­ous crew vis­ited dur­ing the voy­age.

The first his­tory board was un­veiled in Har­bour Grace on Oct. 31, where the In­deav­our spent 10 days four cen­turies ago.

The sec­ond was un­veiled dur­ing a cer­e­mony in Bay de Verde on Nov. 1.

A third cer­e­mony was sched­uled to take place in Ho­peall on Nov. 5, fol­low­ing by events at Dildo Arm and Dildo Is­land (Nov. 6), Col­lier Bay (Nov. 13), Come by Chance (Nov. 16), Heart’s Con­tent (Nov. 20), Job’s Cove, North Shore (Nov. 30), and Car­bon­ear (Dec. 5). Each event be­gins at 2 p.m.

The in­tent is to fol­low the voy­age in “real time” as the In­deav­our made its way into Trin­ity Bay in search of the Beothuk, said arche­ol­o­gist Bill Gil­bert, who is cred­ited with dis­cov­er­ing what is con­sid­ered Canada’s first English set­tle­ment at Cupids.

De­layed by pi­rates

Much of the de­tails of the voy­age are con­tained in di­aries kept by Guy, Crout and other mem­bers of the crew, and helped Gil­bert and oth­ers dis­cover a trove of arche­o­log­i­cal trea­sures over the last two decades.

The in­tent of the voy­age was to es­tab­lish friendly re­la­tions with the Beothuk and be­gin a fur trade.

The In­deav­our was built in Cupids specif­i­cally for this mis­sion, and is thought to be the first decked ocean-go­ing ves­sel built in Canada. It sailed with 14 crew, in­clud­ing John Guy, and was ac­com­pa­nied by a smaller shal­lop car­ry­ing five colonists.

Af­ter some dif­fi­culty, the two ves­sels reached Trin­ity Bay and dis­cov­ered plenty of ev­i­dence of Beothuk oc­cu­pa­tion. In early Novem­ber, 1612, Guy and his men met with the Beothuk, shared a meal and ex­changed gifts.

On the re­turn voy­age, the shal­lop was wrecked in Bay de Verde and the five crew were forced to walk to Car­bon­ear. The In­deav­our went off course and sailed south to Re­news, but later re­turned safely to Cupids.

Many have ques­tioned why the voy­age was un­der­taken so late in the fall, but ev­i­dence sug­gests that pi­rate Peter Eas­ton was to blame. Gil­bert said Eas­ton, who by this time com­manded a fleet of nine ships and 500 men, left the area in Septem­ber 1612, mak­ing it safe for the In­deav­our to sail.

“He sailed east to the Azores, at­tacked a Span­ish trea­sure fleet that was bring­ing back sil­ver from South Amer­ica, and later re­tired to the south of France,” Gil­bert said.

Mean­while, the cor­po­ra­tion is also post­ing en­tries from John Guy’s and Henry Crout’s jour­nals on its web­site (www.bac­calieudigs.ca).

ed­i­tor@cb­n­com­pass.ca

A new his­tory board com­mem­o­rat­ing the 400th an­niver­sary of the his­toric voy­age of the In­deav­our was un­veiled in Bay de Verde on Nov. 1. Shown here are, from left, Bren­dan Doyle, Molly Walsh, Ger­ald Riggs and Carl Riggs of the Bay de Verde Her­itage Com­mit­tee, and Brian Walsh (Bay de Verde), Ger­ald Smith (Dildo), Bill Gil­bert (Blake­town) and Roland “Dan” Burke (Vic­to­ria) of the Bac­calieu Trail Her­itage Cor­po­ra­tion.

Pho­tos by Terry Roberts/the Com­pass

This his­tory board was un­veilled in Bay de Verde on Nov. 1 to com­mem­o­rate the 400th an­niver­sary of the voy­age of the In­deav­our. The paint­ing of the In­deav­our un­der sail was done by artist Pam Wil­liams, who is orig­i­nally from New Har­bour.

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