DEER LAKE The town has moved closer to holding a heritage fair in the fall with the hiring of a researcher.
In the works for the past few months, Deer Lake‚Äôs Heritage Project has brought in researcher Amanda Marie Hillyard to interview some of the town‚Äôs more senior residents to learn about the past, as well as carry out other duties of the project.
Hillyard said getting the seniors involved in the project keeps them active and helps shed loneliness. She‚Äôs heard stories about how it used to take a day-long boat trip on the Humber River to get from Deer Lake to Reidville. One senior talked about being at the airport when the first plane landed in 1957.
‚ÄúThis area has a lot of history and folklore that hasn‚Äôt been fully explored,‚ÄĚ said Hillyard, who has a Masters in Folklore from Memorial University. ‚ÄúThese seniors aren‚Äôt going to be around forever, a lot of them have passed away in the last few years and that‚Äôs history that has been lost forever.‚ÄĚ
But how much history could there be in a town that was only incorporated in 1950? As it turns out, quite a bit according to economic development officer Damon Clarke.
Clarke said with facts like the canal was built using equipment that dug the Panama Canal and that at one time the transmission line between Corner Brook and Deer Lake was the longest such line in the world, it‚Äôs shaping up to be an interesting project.
‚ÄúThe Heritage Fair is being planned at the fall right now, we‚Äôre still sorting out where it will be held and the exact date,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúIt‚Äôs good for us to collect this history now because of some of the people who lived through (the town‚Äôs history) are still here, and they‚Äôre a primary resource that you can‚Äôt read about in a book.‚ÄĚ
Hillyard will be interviewing more senior citizens over the next few weeks.