Re­mem­ber­ing the light­keep­ers of Boar’s Head

Tri-County Vanguard - - COMMUNITY - BY CRAIG BUCKMAN AND JONATHAN RI­LEY FOR THE TRICOUNTY VAN­GUARD CON­TRIB­UTED CON­TRIB­UTED

The peo­ple of Long Is­land have erected a mon­u­ment to re­mem­ber those who served at the Boar’s Head Light­house.

Den­nis Blinn, son of an as­sis­tant light­keeper, un­veiled the mon­u­ment Aug. 24 at a cer­e­mony hosted by the Tiver­ton and Cen­tral Grove His­tor­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion. Blinn’s fa­ther Al­bert was as­sis­tant light­keeper from 1947-1950.

The his­tor­i­cal as­so­ci­a­tion erected the 4-foot high me­mo­rial over­look­ing the red and white light­house, the Bay of Fundy and the mouth of Pe­tite Pas­sage. Boar’s Head is the north east tip of Long Is­land, just north of Tiver­ton; Pe­tite Pas­sage is the stretch of wa­ter be­tween the main­land of Digby Neck and Long Is­land.

Craig Buckman, chair of the his­tor­i­cal as­so­ci­a­tion, says the me­mo­rial is in­tended to hon­our all the light­keep­ers who served at the site.

“These peo­ple pro­vided a vi­tal ser­vice to all the fish­er­men and oth­ers who nav­i­gated the wa­ters of Pe­tite Pas­sage since the first light­house was erected at Boar’s Head in 1862,” said Buckman.

One side of the mon­u­ment lists the names of the six light­house keep­ers from 1864 to 1987 and the other side lists the as­sis­tant keep­ers.

Ap­prox­i­mately 35 peo­ple at­tended the cer­e­mony, in­clud­ing fam­ily mem­bers of some of the former light­keep­ers. Also present were War­den Jim MacAlpine and Deputy War­den Linda Gre­gory of the Mu­nic­i­pal­ity of the District of Digby.

Both coun­cil mem­bers spoke of the im­por­tance of pre­serv­ing lo­cal light­houses as part of our cul­tural her­itage.

The cer­e­mony was fol­lowed by

As­sis­tant Light­keep­ers

a re­cep­tion held at the Tiver­ton Com­mu­nity hall, where guests en­joyed some light re­fresh­ments and shared mem­o­ries and sto­ries of times spent at the light­house.

The cur­rent light­house is the sec­ond on this site and was con­structed in 1957. The light­house not only helped fish­er­men on the Bay of Fundy but also marks the short­est route from Saint John, New Brunswick to Yar­mouth.

The Mu­nic­i­pal­ity of the District of Digby took over own­er­ship of the light­house prop­erty in Au­gust 2016 and the Tiver­ton and Cen­tral Grove His­tor­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion looks af­ter the site. Also at Boar’s Head, the Mu­nic­i­pal­ity owns the Alt­house Look Off prop­erty, and the Na­ture Con­ser­vancy of Canada owns ad­ja­cent shore­line prop­erty on the Bay of Fundy and the land around an­other look off known as the YD Rock.

Henry Rug­gles 1864-1901 Frank Rug­gles 1901-1929 Earl Lee­man 1930-1963 Mur­ray (Bar­ney) Out­house 19631981

Jack Tin­ker 1982

An­gus Smi­ley 1982-1987

Percy Rug­gles

Harry Rug­gles 1919-1933 Elmer Wy­man

Clayton Lee­man c. 1939-1943 Al­bert Blinn c. 1947-1950 Mur­ray (Bar­ney) Out­house 19501963

Frank Thomas 1963-1979

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