Presented by the
Click on the graphic below to return to the NGB Home Page
Newfoundland's Grand Banks Site
to assist you in researching your Family History
To contribute to this site, see above menu item "About".
These transcriptions may contain human errors.
As always, confirm these, as you would any other source material.
Clarence Dewliing, who compiled much of the information on the storm, also composed a song, as he states"written in an idiom of the time when songs were sung, unaccompanied, by the elderly people of our outports". On July 1, 1999, at the opening performance of the Trinity Pageant, a play that depicts the history of the area around Trinity, his song was incorporated into the program and performed publicly for
the first time. The text of the song follows.
THE TRINITY BAY DISASTER
Come all ye fine youngsters and listen to me
I'll tell of a disaster that happened at sea
That happened off shore in the year '92
Just what indeed happened I'll now tell to you.
Now Trinity Bight on the north of the Bay
Was swarming with swiles on that Saturday.
On Saturday morning (no school, you see)
So boys joined their masters and fathers with glee.
February Twenty-seventh - the morning broke clear
The sun shining brightly, no stir in the air
The air was so calm and so calm was the sea
That it beckoned to them like I'd beckon to ye.
Two hundred fifteen of both men and both boys
Took to their punts with shouts and with cries.
Cries of delight for the first seal hunts
They took off from shore in some fifty odd punts.
The bullies were manned by a crew about four
To take the hunters out around five miles from shore
The shore far behind and the ice out ahead
Scarce was the man who now felt any dread.
With all the hard pulling they reached the flow soon
All things were so tranquil right up until noon
At noon the wind from the north west did blow
At hurricane force and then freezing snow.
With the ice heaving madly, the wind blowing wild
Fear was entertained for each man and each child
With wind blowing off shore and temperatures dipped low
Twas no home or haven out there in the flow.
By nightfall that day the toll was complete
Twenty-five persons their maker did meet:
Some on the ice and some more on the shore.
Seventeen hunters were seen nevermore.
Small English Harbour took the worst blow
Forty-nine men in fourteen boats did go
Thirty-two returned to their families so dear
While seventeen perished in the bay way out there.
Twenty-eight men made it to the Horse Chops
Their six boats just made it through ice laden lops
The lops were so big that half frozen and weak
The men found in Hay Cove just what they did seek.
They hid in the forest and chewed on some wood
While two trekked homeward to do what they could
They could and they did; On them so much relied
Before rescuers came six more men had died.
While out in the bay with the coming of night
Boats were pulled on the ice for protection so slight.
Not slight was the wind for the coming of day
Two had reached Heart's Delight on the South of the Bay.
Captain Dick Fowlow from Trinity East
Sometime next day before the searched ceased
Found two frozen bodies adrift in a boat
From Green Bay again they never would float.
The S.S. Labrador under Captain George Hann
Brought a hospital patient at Trinity to land
Gave him over to sealers out there in the Bay
They have never been heard of right up to this day.
Now thank you for listening to my story so dear
Of one terrible happening of that terrible year
Many are the stories with our history are laced
Of the dangers so often that our fishermen faced.
Transcribed by James Butler, 1997
Revised by Jim Butler, September 2002