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Memorial University of Newfoundland - Digital Archives Initiative

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  • All fields: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula--Branch
(67 results)



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    • The Splink juts out from the cliff

    • Knowledge of the land/water and environment;
    • The Splink is a rock vein that juts out of the cliff around the Pismire Gully waterfall, creating a small, private cove. Marina Gambin writes, My great-Aunt Aggie (Mooney) Singleton, St. Josephs, was almost 100 years old when she died. She told me...
    • The Black Wharf juts out into the Cove

    • Knowledge of the land/water and environment;
    • The Black Wharf was originally a finger pier placed to slow the adverse effects of river sand and tidal action on the depth of the Gut. Over the years, the structural material of the Black Wharf has changed and today this structure is technically a...
    • Early all-grade school in Branch

    • Education
    • The early schools in Branch were located in peoples houses. By the early-1900s, this large schoolhouse - across from the location of the current church - was the centre of education for many Branch children.
    • Gathering on the Height

    • Social beliefs, practices and customs;
    • In addition to the Wharf and the Corner, the Height has been a popular outdoor gathering place along the Gut Path leading to the Gut. In recent generations, it was a favourite place for the older folks to chat and reminisce.
    • Waterfall at the base of the Green Gulch

    • Knowledge of the land/water and environment;
    • Above the cliffs halfway out the Wester Cove, two forested hills descend and join to create the Green Gulch. The gully water cascades down the cliff face, creating an intimate waterfall far away - it seems - from everything else.
    • A wave breaks over the Big Rock during a swell

    • Knowledge of the land/water and environment;
    • The Big Rock sometimes sits in the ocean, sometimes sits on shore. Its changing position between high and low tide, and its view of the Western Cove have made it an ideal ducking spot and a favorite - though sometimes dangerous - place for...
    • Boys playing football in the Landwash

    • Festive events and games; Knowledge of the land/water and environment;
    • The Landwash is a natural playground for the young who play in the sand and waves and explore the bordering tidal pools when the sand is in. Children are brave enough to swim in the less-than-warm North Atlantic waters, but adults can be persuaded...
    • Inland view of the Flats

    • Knowledge of the land/water and environment; Work;
    • The Flats provide a considerable tract of agricultural land in Branch. Suitable for growing vegetables and a source of hay, the Flats also provide livestock pasturage.
    • A view of the Easter Cove from the Wester Cove

    • Migration/settlement;
    • On the east side of the wide river mouth, the Easter Cove has at times been quite removed from the Place. In the early years, there were a fair number of houses in the Easter Cove. However in 1962, rafting ice damaged the series of wooden bridges...
    • Children cresting Jimmys Hill on tricycles

    • Migration/settlement;
    • Over the Road is bounded by Jimmys Hill, named for James Roche (1904 - 1970). Campbells and ORourkes live at the base of Jimmys Hill. Mick ORourke- the first ORourke in Branch arrived around 1845 from Mall Bay, St. Marys Bay and married a Nash....
    • The Ground sits fallow across the River

    • Knowledge of the land/water and environment;
    • In the 1930s and 1940s, during the tumultuous years of the Depression and World War II, considerable agricultural land was cleared in Branch. The Ground, just up the River from Roches Gulch, was cleared by and for war veterans returning home to...
    • Rainbow Over Branch

    • Knowledge of the land/water and environment; Migration/settlement;
    • For over 200 years, in the valley where Thomas Nash first settled, people continue to have a close relationship with the land and ocean.
    • The Kitchen Sink used for playing cubby

    • Knowledge of the land/water and environment;
    • In from the Big Rock and the Cock O Wee Path, the Rocks of the Wester Cove transition into the Landwash through a stretch of relatively flat bedrock. Here the rock shelves are foundations for imaginary castles, oceanfront rooms and meandering...
    • The Bank overlooks the Landwash

    • Knowledge of the land/water and environment;
    • The Bank is a manmade structure. In the mid-1950s, when the Gut was dredged, sand and gravel were piled at the edge of the Landwash, creating the Bank.
    • A skiff going in the Gut

    • Knowledge of the land/water and environment; Objects;
    • The Gut has been the industrial hub of the fishery in Branch since the 1790s. Although the term gut refers specifically to the channel of water at the mouth of the River, the general area around the channel is also known as the Gut. The channel...
    • Aerial photo of the Gut today

    • Work; Objects; Knowledge of the land/water and environment;
    • The Gut has seen many changes over the generations with changing fishing methods and technology, as well as declining cod stocks in recent years. Today at the Gut, modern longliners moor in the Pond while a dormant fish processing plant sits next...
    • Men splitting fish on the wharf Across the Gut

    • Knowledge of the land/water and environment; Work;
    • Until the mid-1970s, salt cod was the main fish product from Branch. The catch was landed, gutted and split on the marginal wharves along the Gut. In earlier years, marginal wharves and fish stages lined the Gut on both sides. The east side was...
    • Fish flakes on the Back of the Beach

    • Objects; Work; Food;
    • During the salt cod fishery, split and cleaned fish was left in salt bulk for two weeks and then spread to dry on flakes built on the Back of the Beach. Women and children were responsible for spreading and turning the fish.

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