DiscoverNewfoundPod - a bite sized podcast about Newfoundland
NewfoundPod - a bite sized podcast about Newfoundland

NewfoundPod - a bite sized podcast about Newfoundland

Author: Debbie Wiseman

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NewfoundPod is a bite-sized podcast about Newfoundland, hosted by Debbie Wiseman. In each episode, I will bring you stories focusing on our unique culture and extraordinary citizens.
44 Episodes
 Today I'm going to talk about Amelia Earhart. Here in Newfoundland, we love when we can make a connection to a famous person or event. We have a couple of connections to aviation pioneer and one of my personal heroes, Amelia Earhart.    More episodes, transcripts and show notes at http://NewfoundPod.comLinks: Send in a voice message:
With the weather finally warming up here on the Avalon, I decided to talk to you today about the history of Bowring Park.   More episodes, transcripts and show notes at http://NewfoundPod.comLinks: http://bowringpark.comTheme music:Club Seamus Kevin MacLeod ( Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License Send in a voice message:
There's some construction going on in downtown St. John's right now, but the store owners want you to know, they are open for business. This got me to thinking about the stores that have been downtown for quite a while, and one of those stores is NONIA. You may know NONIA as just a store  that sells beautiful handmade sweaters, but there's actually a rich history behind it.   More episodes, transcripts and show notes at http://NewfoundPod.comTHeme music:Club Seamus Kevin MacLeod ( Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License Send in a voice message:
 This week, Newfoundlanders go to the polls in another provincial election. If you watch the news, have social media or just talk to people, there's always something going on that makes people angry with whoever is in charge. Sometimes it's justified, sometimes it's not. Back in 1932, people had had enough and a demonstration turned into a riot that threatened the life of the Prime Minister. --- Send in a voice message:
Quick note!

Quick note!


My regular weekly episode will be out tomorrow! (Tuesday)--- Send in a voice message:
 Hello and welcome back to NewfoundPod, a bite sized podcast about Newfoundland. I'm your host, Debbie Wiseman and this is another mini episode. I had planned to release an episode about the Colonial Building Riot, but I haven't finished it and rather than rush through it, I thought I'd release this instead. Today I'm going to tell you about a couple of Newfoundland traditions regarding the month of May.  The first saying you may have heard of is a warning against purchasing a broom during the month of May.  It goes “Buy a broom in May, sweep your family away.” Variations also include sweeping your friends, your fortune or even your own life away. You could also sweep the head of household away. Some superstitions even warn against using a broom at all during the month. The origins of this superstition have been lost over time, but it seems to have both English and Irish origins.  In fact the superstition was so strong in Ireland that they even refused to make a broom during the month.     Another tradition revolved around the inevitable snowfall in May here in Newfoundland. While some other places are enjoying the spring weather, we know we will have a few more snowfalls at least. Our Irish ancestors suggested gathering some of that May snow in a bottle, letting it melt and dabbing it on your face to fade freckles. Personally, I like freckles. In my research, I of course consulted the writing of folklorist Larry Dohey, who said “A face without freckles is like a night without stars.” I completely agree.     Another use for that May snow that was collected was to cure ailments, specifically, sore eyes.  Traditionally, the seal hunt ended around this time of the year. Fishermen refused to wear goggles, considering it “unmanly” and as a result, suffered from snow blindness. The May snow was said to soothe the sting from that.  It could also be used to treat a sty and other ailments.     Thanks to Dale Jarvis and Larry Dohey, as always, for their tireless efforts in researching and preserving  Newfoundland folklore. I'll include links to their work in the show notes.     Thanks for listening today, and I'll be back next week with a full episode. Talk to you then!    --- Send in a voice message:
Hello and welcome back to Newfoundpod, a bite sized podcast about Newfoundland. I'm your host, Debbie Wiseman and in today's mini episode, I'm going to tell you about Lady Helena Squires. Helena Squires was born Helena Strong in 1879 in Little Bay Islands. She attended the Methodist College in St. John's, Mount Allison University in New Brunswick, Emerson College and Harvard in Boston. She returned to Newfoundland and married Richard Squires in 1905. They settled in St. John's where Richard set up his law practice. He also spent 23 years in the House of Assembly. Part of his time in the House was spent blocking the efforts of the suffragettes to get women the right to vote. It's kind of surprising, then, that his wife would become the first woman to be elected to the House of Assembly. In 1929, the MHA for Lewisporte died suddenly, and a by-election was held the following year. Helena ran and won by a landslide, receiving 81% of the votes. She ran on a platform of raising the standard of living in Newfoundland, improving child welfare and public health. As you can imagine, some men were not happy having a woman in the House. I can't imagine it was easy for her. Frederick Alderdice, the opposition leader said "I know she will take a large part in government affairs, but hope her actions will never be such as to cause us to name the government a petticoat government." I'm sure he thought that was hilarious. Lady Squires, known for her wit, just replied, “Ladies are not wearing them now.” Lady Squires took her position seriously, though, and spoke up for the people she served. In 1932, Richard Squires was the Prime Minister of Newfoundland. The liberal government was losing public support, and this came to a head in April of that year, when a riot broke out, trapping Richard and Helena in Colonial House. They escaped unscathed, but both lost their respective elections a couple of months later. Of all the candidates, she came closest to being re-elected, losing by only 273 votes. By the way, I will be doing an episode on this riot very soon. Helena Squires trained to be a teacher and was considered a social activist at the time. She founded a teachers school and a maternity hospital. She also served as the President of the Grace Hospital Auxiliary and was always active in charity work and in the church. When Newfoundland joined Confederation in 1949, she became the first president of the provincial Liberal Association, a position that she held until 1958. She passed away in 1959. On a final note, I noticed in my research that Lady Helena was often not written about in a favourable light, which I feel was due to her husband and his efforts against the women's vote and frankly, his corruption. I think this is unfair. It's assumed because her husband continued to oppose a woman's right to vote, that she did as well. In fact, I read that she was involved in the suffragette movement but when she married and her husband became involved in politics, she stopped participating, but still thought women deserved the right to vote. We have to remember that this was a different time, and for better or worse, she supported her husband. I think her run for the House at least signifies that she thought women belonged in politics and her charity work showed that she believed women deserved better in life. Sources on the website Send in a voice message:
 Hello, and welcome back to Newfoundpod, a bite-sized podcast about Newfoundland. I'm your host, Debbie Wiseman, and today I'm going to talk to you about the first non-stop transatlantic flight, which originated here in Newfoundland 100 years ago. I'll also tell you about the plans to celebrate the anniversary here locally. Music: Club Seamus by Kevin Macleod  https://incompetech.comSources:The Aviation History Online Museum (Site inactive)WikipediaCentury of Flight One Hundredth AnniversaryCBC: The 1st successful transatlantic flight, 100 years ago, set to be celebrated in St. John's Aviation History Newfoundland LabradorAlcock and Brown 100 (Ireland)  Thanks so much for listening today. If you can, please leave me a review on Apple podcasts or whatever podcast app you use. I'd really appreciate it.  You can follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, just search NewfoundPod. The site with all my previous episodes is  You can contact me at Thanks so much to my supporters on Patreon. If you'd like to support me there, you can do so for as little as $1 a month. You can support me for free by sharing episodes with your friends and followers.   --- Send in a voice message:
It's iceberg season here in Newfoundland. Just check out Facebook and you will see some great photos being shared. And I completely acknowledge that this is probably just me, but when I hear iceberg, I think of the Titanic. Confession - I am obsessed with the Titanic. I have been for as long as I can remember. Today I am going to tell you about the Newfoundland connection to the disaster.The RMS Titanic set sail from Southampton on April 10, 1912. On her maiden voyage on April 14th, she hit an iceberg and sank in under 3 hours. The accident occured about 600 km south of Newfoundland. Only 710 of the liner's over 2200 passengers and crew were saved. A newfoundland sealing vessel called the Algerine recovered the last body in May of that same year.The distress signal sent out by Titanic was first heard at the lighthouse at Cape Race, Newfoundland. There were three lighthouse keepers there at the time, Walter Gray, Jack Goodwin and Robert Hunston, along with 14 year old Jimmy Myrick, a relative of one of the other lighthouse keepers. They had been receiving messages since Titanic set sail, from people wanting to be among the first to pass messages along to family and friends in the United States while on board her maiden voyage. But that night, the message was different, and much more urgent. A CQD, which stood for Come Quick, Danger was received. Now, there is some controversy as to who received this message. Officially, it was received by Goodwin. However, many years later, Jimmy Myrick confessed that he was actually left alone for a short time at the controls and was the one to receive the distress call. This would have been against protocol and would have cost the men their jobs, so Jimmy was sworn to secrecy and only revealed this later in life after the keepers had passed away. Goodwin was on his way back into the room and he took over. He called for his superior, Mr. Gray, who stayed on with Jack Phillips on board the Titanic and relayed messages to other ships, to officials and to the public, doing his best to help.Following the disaster, a ship was chartered that would act as a permanent weather station of sorts, positioned at the Grand Banks to be on the lookout for icebergs and report any sightings to stations in Newfoundland and Labrador.People assumed the Titanic sank in one piece, and there was always talk of trying to raise her. It wasn't until 1985 that Robert Ballard was able to find the wreckage and it came out that she had actually split in two prior to sinking. The wreckage will probably never be able to brought up from what is now known as Titanic Canyon, but earlier this year, expeditions to the site were announced. Did you know that more people have gone to space than have seen the Titanic wreck in person? I'd love to go, if anyone feels like springing for the $100,000 ticket for me.I hope you all enjoyed this mini, and I'll be back next week with a full episode. Talk to you then!Sources:WikipediaMy obsession with TitanicThe Rooms: to dive down to the wreck of the Titanic? It costs only $100K Music: Club Seamus by Kevin MacLeodIf you can, please leave me a review on Apple podcasts or whatever podcast app you use. I'd really appreciate it. You can follow me on Facebook and Twitter, just search NewfoundPod. Instagram is also NewfoundPod. You can contact me at Thanks so much to my supporters on Patreon. If you'd like to support me there, you can do so for as little as $1 a month. You can support me for free by sharing episodes with your friends and followers. --- Send in a voice message:
Hello, and welcome to the very first NewfoundPod mini episode! Today I'm going to tell you about the Ode To Newfoundland.The Ode to Newfoundland is the provincial anthem of Newfoundland and Labrador. The song started as a poem, written by the Governor of Newfoundland at the time, Sir Cavendish Boyle, in 1902. He had reported to Newfoundland from England the year before and wrote many poems dedicated to the rugged island he'd fallen in love with. The first time the poem was performed publicly was by Frances Daisy Foster, at the end of a play called Mamzelle which was performed at the Casino Theatre in St. John's. The song was set to music composed by ER Krippner, who was a German bandmaster, music teacher and music store owner living in St. John's.  The song became so popular that articles in newspapers appealed to the Governor to adopt it as Newfoundland's National Anthem. He agreed, but decided to change up the music, either for a more dignified sound, or to make it appeal to a wider audience, depending on the source. He also bought the rights to the original music. On May 20, 1904, the poem titled Newfoundland was changed to Newfoundland: An Ode and became the official national anthem. It fell out of favour when Newfoundland joined Canada in 1949, but in the 1980's, pride in our province was enjoying a resurgence and the song again became popular enough that it was named the provincial anthem. This was another first for Newfoundland, as we were the first province to adopt an anthem.  The Ode is unique in that it celebrates the natural beauty of the province rather than patriotism. I hope you enjoyed this very first mini! I'll be back next week with a new episode. Talk to you then! Send in a voice message:
Comments (2)

Nope Ninja

So happy i found this and am a patreon as well. Cannot recommend this enough.

Jun 12th

Brian Millan

Just discovered NewfoundPod on the Castbox app. I see you've been at it over a year now. Great stuff! Can't wait to catch up on all the episodes. I've made two visits to your province, once to Labrador west and once to Buchans and then to St. John's. Many thanks, Brian/NYC

Oct 16th
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