The Sable Island Community

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A series of special moments and lasting impressions shared by people who have experienced the island first-hand or have a distant, but enduring, relationship with the island. These perspectives represent some of the many connections between people and Sable Island, and also, connections among people through Sable Island.


Posts about various individuals who lived on Sable Island.

Sid Forward and Family on Sable Island, 1961-1963

In the early 1960s my father, Sid Forward, was employed as an electrician on Sable Island. He was responsible for maintaining the lights and diesel power station. I celebrated my 4th birthday on the island. Sable was a wonderful adventure for a child. We lived in a huge sandbox with dunes to roll down and horses to ride. We were surrounded by amazing wildlife and even got to “check out” the occasional helicopter or airplane.

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David Millar, 1967-1969

In May 1967, David Millar, fresh out of training in Toronto and Ottawa, arrived at his first posting, Sable Island. Outside of work at the weather station, David took an interest in the island’s environment and spent a lot of time walking and exploring, and developed two hobbies which he still enjoys – bird watching and photography. During his two summers, David occasionally assisted Dalhousie University’s Ian McLaren and his students in their studies of the Ipswich Sparrow.

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Merlin MacAulay 1955-1956

In May 1955, after completing the 16-week course at the Upper Air Training School in Toronto, and then serving a few months in Sept-Îles, Quebec, Merlin MacAulay travelled to Sable Island on the government ship Lady Laurier to work as an upper air technician for the MSC. During Merlin’s stay, Fred Davis and a National Film Board of Canada crew visited to made a short documentary about Sable Island.

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Joyce Barkhouse, Author

The book Pit Pony, written by Joyce Barkhouse, is about a young coal miner and his companion, a Sable Island horse. Joyce won many awards for her writing, and Pit Pony is the most beloved of all her works.

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Photo Blog

Gina Little is a technologist with the Meteorological Service of Canada (MSC). She joined the MSC’s Sable Island team in February 2007, and during the past twelve years has spent six to seven months annually on the island – a total of about 75 months thus far. In her Sable Island PhotoBlog, Gina shares a few of the many patterns, small details, and scenes th

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