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9 - The Stone Lady of Unknown Fame



from The Treasury of Newfoundland Stories published, by Maple Leaf Mills Limited, in 1961

Many thousands of people have passed by the lady carved in stone where she stands in front of the C.N.R. Railway Station at St. John's, Newfoundland, but very few know just who the Stone Lady is or what the statue symbolizes. Well, the statue itself represents industry and the Stone Lady is a model of a young woman whose home was Whithoume, though she was working in St. John's at the time the statue was modelled.

Her name was Fannie Quinlan, and she was just twenty-four. Because she was well-built and unusually tall for a woman (she stood 5' 11") she was asked to model for this statue and she agreed. Fannie posed for two or three hours a day until the work was completed. She wore a dress especially designed for the occasion and had her hair styled to suit the theme. The stone itself was originally a large pillar of free stone which stood in front of the Union Bank in St. John's.

Miss Quinlan later married John Gushue of her native Whithoume. Although she died about twenty-eight years ago, her form stands as firm as ever in the hustle and bustle of the capital city. Her fame of being the only Newfoundland woman to model for a public statue is little known, but Mr. Gushue himself always made a point of paying respect to the Stone Lady whenever he visited St. John's.



Back to: The Treasury of Newfoundland Stories Menu

This page transcribed by James Butler, 2000
REVISED: August 2002 (Terry Piercey)

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