Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Grand Falls-Windsor Mill Whistle Flashback

When I started my project on the Corner Brook mill whistle, a colleague mentioned that he thought the CBC archive in St. John's, NL might have documentaries or reports on other signalling devices that might be relevant for comparative purposes, like the noon day guns in St. John's. I contacted Christine Davies and she confirmed that there had been a short documentary on the mill whistle in Grand Falls-Windsor in 1998. I popped by the archive and listened to it, making a note that I should formally request a copy. Gary MacDonald's report made me think that a radio documentary might be the best way to proceed with my own project.

Of course, life intervened and I moved away for a postdoc, then back for a teaching position. When the funding for the mill whistle project came through, I remembered the documentary and again made a note to request a copy. Another move and a few months of settling in, and I finally made the call (and follow up email) to place the request. Last week, it was granted and I'm looking forward to receiving a copy for research purposes. But I'm equally thrilled that the report was re-aired on the Radio Noon Archives yesterday with a plug for the Hum on the Humber project!

To listen to it yourself, visit and scroll to find Tuesday, April 17, 2012 -- Radio Noon Archives.

Happy listening! And thank you Christine Davies and CBC Radio in St. John's!

Sunday, April 15, 2012


A big thank you to everyone who completed a mill whistle survey over the past two months. I'm thrilled with the response and look forward to reading your comments!

I'm hoping to visit the Corner Brook area in June to record the whistle from various locations throughout the city and to interview individuals about their experiences and memories of the whistle. If you'd like to chat or share your own recordings of the whistle, please email

Stay tuned!