Thursday, April 1, 2010

Early Sketches of Pokiok

One of the oldest pictures of Pokiok and Otty & Crookshanks sawmill I could find was an etching or sketch drawn by W.H. Bartlett back in 1840. Bartlett was a widely-travelled artist whose works cover Europe , the Near East , the USA and Canada. Unfortunately he succombed to a deadly fever aboard a French ship just off Malta in 1854 on his way home to England from the Near East. He was 45 years of age. I do believe Bartlett was sitting up on the ridge near the Gormley house on Bridge Street when he etched this scene.

This etching by British-born Saint John marine artist Edward John Russell is entitled The Narrows: looking back at Indiantown and appeared in the Canadian Illustrated News in March , 1873. I believe Russell was sitting somewhere in behind the Cross and McCoy homes , along the cliff above Robertson Quarry. Are those houses not on lots where Daws King and Charlie Gibbons had their homes during our childhood?

This sketch is likewise by Russell and is entitled : The Narrows of Saint John River at Saint John looking towards South Bay. I am convinced the artist was somewhere near the old Cliff Club overlooking Welch\s Cove where my friend Gerry Sherwood lived .... at the base of the ravine at water level below Mrs Caddell\s and Venere Maxwell's houses. Nowadays the old road has been blocked off and there is a house built on the spot where the horse and buggy are in the picture..... just about to take a turn left down the burner hill. I think the distance between Greenhead and Randolph is rather a bit exaggerated. This work was also published in the Canadian Illustrated News in March , 1873.... which leads me to think that Russell might have etched both scenes during the same trek up Pokiok way since he lived far away on the West Side back then.  

P:S: Have you read the above link..... About Pokiok ?  


  1. Super page! Wait til I catch my breath and I'll then follow through. (c;

  2. You are a kind man , Jim... thanks for the comment but I truly must share it with Fluff as I did the writing only.... Rebekah set the whole shebang up and did all the technichal work.

  3. I remember many pleasant visits to Pokiok to my Aunt Marg King's place on the edge of the cliff. There were always beautiful big lilac trees lining the driveway to their home. I remember the kids from Pokiok at Alexander School, Debbie Cross, the Whitenecks, and MacMillans.

    1. Hi Delauncey Lady ,
      I remember well your Aunt Marg as well as her husband , Daws and son , " Sonny" as we called him back then. The cliffs where they lived were our childhood haunts. Debbie Cross and the Whitenect children were much younger than I .. I played mainly with Debbie's older siblings , Harry and Margey ... thanks you for dropping by .. please come again ....