I started out planning to leave the "Introduction to the Maritimes" just as I found it: But technically it wasn't really a story

. Still I thought it rather neat, so I've ended up merging Dad's somewhat technical dissertation on the Maritimes physical structure with his stories. A lot of these stories are not from our family, but I felt that they gave a context and relevance to the ones which are. AN INTRODUCTION TO THE MARITIMES In 1836 Catherine Parr Traill was homesteading in Upper Canada when she wrote: We have neither fay nor fairy ghost, nor bogle, satyr nor wood-nymph, our very forests disdain to shelter dryad or hamadryad. No naiad haunts the rushy margins of our lakes, or hallows with her presence our forest rills. No druid claims our oaks ... we look upon things with the curious eye of natural philosophy alone.1 In her situation Traill felt the need to think of her surroundings as a place "with no scope for 12 The lady further said, "The only beings in which I have any interest the imagination." are the Indians, and even they want the warlike character and intelligence that I pictured they 23 would possess." Obviously, Catherine Parr Trail did not really want the Indians to show more aggression and she did not ask them what they thought of her theory that Canada was a new world, "its volume of history as yet blank." 34 Had she enquired, Traill would have found a well-developed mythology, a real cause for whistling in the dark. Traill's sister, Mrs. Susanna Moodie made a similar dismissal of the native culture in 1852, when she wrote: The unpeopled wastes of Canada must present the same aspect to the new settler that the world did to our first parents after their expulsion from the Garden of Eden; all the sin which could defile the spot, or haunt it with the association of departed evil, is concentrated in their own persons. Bad spirits cannot be supposed to linger near a place where crime has never been committed. The belief in ghosts (spirits), so prevalent in old countries, must first have had its


Catherine Parr Trail, Roughing It In the Bush, pp. unknown Ibid, pp. unknown Ibid, pp, unknown Ibid, pp. unknown




foundation in the consciousness of guilt.


The English poet Rupert Brooke, who was active during the period of the First World War, was on the same wave-length as the Traill sisters: The maple and the birch conceal no dryads and Pan has never been heard among these reed beds. Look as long as you like [He was able to spare a few weeks.] and you shall not see a white arm in the foam. A godless place. And the dead do not return. That is why there is nothing lurking in the heart of the shadows, and no human mystery in the colours, and neither the same joy nor kind of peace in 56 dawn and sunset that older lands know. It is, indeed, a new world. It must be remembered that Brooke represented a fading imperialist empire, but, it is harder to understand the motives of native born men and women who have promoted a similar image of Canada as a grey, unspirited wasteland. In 1948, Douglas Le Pan published a thin book of poems, which included a poem entitled, "A Country Without Mythology." Hopefully he was decrying our lack of interest in the tales which comprise our myths, legends and history. Perhaps the same may be said for Earle Birney, who suggested in 1962 that, "it's only by our 67 lack of ghosts we're haunted." In the Maritime population it has been estimated that only about eight percent of the original settlers were English. More than half were Scots and the rest German, Irish, and Scot-Irish settlers. These were soon joined by Yorkshire men, who settled the upper Bay of Fundy, by more Scots who were ousted during the Highland Clearances, and by the Irish who had to move because of famine at home. When my great-great grandfather Alexander Mackay came to the Magaguadavic River he probably spoke Gaelic and no English. My great-great-great grandfather Guptill may have spoken some English when he moved to Grand Manan from Maine, but I suspect he knew as much German. My extended family included the "English" Russells, who were originally Scandinavian, and the Gillmors, who probably preferred Irish Gaelic over the language now in use. These people became an integrated population when English was taken up as the common tongue, but even as late as 1941, 10,000 Cape Bretoners still listed Gaelic as their mother tongue. The Celtic peoples had a strong tradition of belief in the supernatural and they brought this belief with them to Canada. Some of this representative group knew of "witches" and "fairies" but most of the Gaels would have spoken of the "boabhe" and the "sidhe" and the Teutons would have spoken of the "hexen" and "albs", which approximate rather than equal one another. This means that the major sources of Maritime folklore are Indian, Gaelic, German,

Unknown, may be Catherine Parr Trail, Roughing It... Rupert Brooke, unknown Earle Birney, unknown



and English. Luckily not all new Canadians were so blind as the Traill sisters or Rupert Brooke to the supernatural world around them. Charles G. Leland, a long-time resident, disagreed with the poet Brooke, saying: The Wabenaki mythology (...) gave a fairy, an elf, a naiad, or a hero to every rock and river and ancient hill.... When the last Indian shall be in his grave, those who come after us will ask in wonder why we had no curiosity as to the romance of 78 our country.... The French missionary, Abbe Morillot disagreed as well, candidly remarking: "This country is one of the most suggestive of superstition I have seen. Everything here, sea, earth and heaven, 89 is very strange." When the immigrants arrived in Canada they would have found an already established folklore for certainly the local Indians would not have agreed with those who opined that Canada had no supernatural. They believed in an extensive system of spirits and spirit worlds. In Indian belief those things which seem dead to us, rocks and trees are rather the living tombs of diverse beings and spirits. The geography was thus seen as completely animate, the strangest features of the landscape being regarded as particularly worthy of attention, and avoidance or placation with gifts. In the old tales, unusual trees, mountains, deep clefts, and unusual boulders were all considered as possible incarnations or reincarnations of forceful shape changers or spirits. Among the Indians whirlpools, waterfalls, rapids, giant waves and other great races of water were considered to be incarnate sea-spirits which clustered about peculiar configurations of the sea-bottom. The Celtic people's beliefs were similar. Their god, Manan mac Ler, was rarely seen in human form but the men who defended ancient Ireland swore that they saw him travelling inland from the open sea in the form of a huge wave driven by three, centrally connected, turning legs. Islands on the ocean were sometimes seen as shape-changers which might become marine monsters from time to time. Unusual patterns or colours on the surface of the sea were routinely avoided because they suggested something uncanny just below the surface. Black patches on the sea were particularly avoided as supernatural "evil islands." Since the Maritimes are based in an area of extreme geological differences, numerous "uncanny patterns" are easy to find. My sea-going relatives who lived on Grand Manan Island were never willing to enquire, either, into any strange disturbances of the water, always turning away from it, "moving with the sun" (in a clockwise direction). It was believed that turning "widdershins" (counterclockwise) would place the boat and its men in the care of "the devil." Of the various things in earth-world, stones are considered the most elemental, being referred

Charles G. Leland, unknown Abbe Morillot, unknown


to in all mythology as "the bones of the earth." Throughout the region, the Indians noticed that "living stones" betrayed their presence at dusk and dawn, by showing the same peculiar light as that which surrounded the bodies of men, other living animals, and certain plants (including most trees). It was believed that when shamans were being tracked they often hid themselves within stones, and were frequently brought down as a result of careless shape-shifting. If an arm or leg happened to be left unreformed, it could be struck off with a spear creating a trauma that would entrap the magician for a long time within his rock. Particularly large, overbalanced, or peculiarly striated or coloured stones were regarded with great suspicion, and men formerly collected bits of such stones, reasoning that possession of a fragment gave them control of the spirit of the whole. A fine example of such uncanny rocks is "The Rocks" at Hopewell Cape, product of surface erosion. About 300 million years ago rushing streams from the much taller Caledonian Mountains swept seaward depositing layer after layer of sand and gravel. Over the years all of this became compressed into rock, mostly sandstone and conglomerate, interspersed with layers of shale (compacted mud or silt). As time passed the region was tilted and cracks and fractures crossed the planes of rock dividing them into large blocks. Next came the glacier which enlarged these divisions as it scraped its way over the land. As the glacier fell back, the sea removed rubble from between the sections leaving isolated pillars of stone. Finally the sea, fallen to lower levels, continued to cut away at the base of these blocks creating thin pillars supporting a massive block of matter. Thus the "flowerpots" were created. Some of these topple each year, but the sea is always eating away the land of the adjacent cliffside creating new forms of very peculiar appearance and power. Considering the origins of the "bones" of the Maritimes there must have been plenty of such bits of power stone to collect. The Atlantic Provinces are part of the old Appalachian range. It borders the southern margin of the Canadian Shield, the ancient core rock of all North America. The newer rocks have been laid down on the old, like a layer cake. While the oldest rocks of the shield are three billion years of age, the rocks of Appalachia on top are considerably younger, perhaps as little as one billion years of age. Geologists are fairly certain that the Appalachians were formed when Europe, Africa, North and South America were still fused in a single giant continent. In this form the Appalachians were continuous over a vast area stretching from the southern United States, through eastern Canada and Newfoundland, across present-day Scotland and northern Europe terminating in northern Russia. This massif has come to be called the Calidonides and they were formed by the closing of a huge ocean (not unlike the Atlantic) about 450 million years ago. It was the opening of the present Atlantic Ocean that split the Calidonides into fragments, the Appalachians in America; a remnant in Greenland; some others in Scotland, and the remainder in Europe, each on a isolated land mass. The worn stumps of these hills give us the various highlands of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, which are commonly found in the west of these areas. It is possible that the similarity in the beliefs of the immigrant Celtic peoples and the native Indians was in part because the land which both races inhabited was, in prehistoric times, a single continent. This would have allowed the sidhe (used here to encompass all the various fairy peoples) to have moved about freely at one time, only eventually being forced into isolation by continental drift. About 370 million years ago, sediments began to accumulate in the spaces, which were below

sea-level, between the uplifted Appalachian mountains. These salt-water seas filled, over time, with conglomerates, sandstones, limestones and evaporites as well as with the bodies of marine plants and animals. This was late Mississippian time, and the evaporites are now being dug up as potash, near Sussex, New Brunswick. The Havelock limestones and the Hillsborough gypsum mines are all a part of this complex, formed at a time when the region was much closer the equator than is now the case. In the late Carboniferous period the whole region was "block-faulted" and refilled with sandstone, conglomerate and interbedded red and green shales. Climatic conditions were still hot and humid in that intervale and this was when the coal measures were laid down at Minto, New Brunswick and in Pictou and Richmond counties, Nova Scotia. All of this action created the costal lowlands which characterize all of Prince Edward Island, the south eastern part of New Brunswick and a central north east-ern bit of Nova Scotia. Approximately 250 million years ago the convection cells governing continental drift changed abruptly in orientation. The Appalachians in Atlantic Canada began to be torn apart rather than compressed. This created a great rift valley between the Americas and Europe and opened lesser rifts such as the Bay of Fundy. Triassic red stone was laid down in the rifts and the whole was overlain by a flow of lava that hardened into the rock called basalt. Because there have been no further compressions, these rocks are lie in flat plains, except where they were tilted in the vicinity of earth fractures, or faults. The most recent glaciation commenced a mere 2.5 million years ago. At that time the Maritimes were covered by an ice sheet which depressed the land and flooded most of the coast that was not otherwise involved. This continental glacier began to recede about 12,000 years ago leaving behind vast accumulations of till, sand, and gravel. As the ice fell away into the sea, and retreated northwards, it exposed the highest peaks in the region including portions of Cape Breton and the mountains near what is now Mount Carleton park. These bared rocks were exposed to intense temperature changes between day and night and became frost-shattered relics which geologists call "nunataks." This word is borrowed from the natives of Greenland, who still use it to refer to any isolated mountain completely surrounded by an ice sheet. Here, as there, the nunatak was understood to have the same force as the Innuit "inukshuks," which are humanoid-form cairns thought to have been deliberately erected in the faceless Arctic to create artificial landmarks. It was once rumoured that these rock piles were raised by men to celebrate victories over the "frost-giants", an ancient race of dangerous propensities. Other have contended that these actually are the spirits of giants held in bondage by the magic of long dead shamans. Whatever they are, they are more than simple signposts. Farley Mowat suspected they were "guardians, who solidly resisted the impalpable menace of space which is uncircumscribed...." 910 When Mowat visited with them, he found himself conversing with 1011 In our region the "these silent beings who have vital force without the gift of life." ice is long gone and the inukshuks have crumbled into "bedrock showing strange and irregular


Farley Mowat, unknown Ibid, pp. unknown


1112 forms." Since then, the land has been rebounding but the forces of tide, wind and water have kept ahead of any gains and there has been a net loss of land.

After stones, trees were considered next in importance, their spirits being considered the equal of men and women. In fact, it was generally held that people were the spirits of trees released from bondage at the will of the creator-god. Both the Aboriginal People and the Celtic and Teutonic immigrants felt sure that the trees had a power far beyond the ordinary. To travel in the woods was to take your own life at risk. Not only were the trees themselves alive, but the woods were haunted by a vast array of spirits. As well the animals which inhabited the woods were sometimes thought of as the guardians, or totems, of men, and most were considered to be sky-spirits, imported into the earth-world at the instigation of the mortal-gods. Considering the proportion of the new world which was treed it is little surprise that vast numbers of sidhe inhabited Canada and the Maritimes. RED SKY AT NIGHT Because Maritimers live by the sea much of their lore and craft relates to ships, vessels, boats, and the ocean itself. Great- grandfather Guptill came to Grand Manan, N.B., by way of Pennsylvania and Maine. He and his son were herring fishermen, working off the shores of Grand Manan Island. Of necessity, they had what locals still refer to as "the weather-eye", being attuned to the tides, sun, wind, moon and stars. As a youngster, visiting from the mainland, I had as much trouble understanding their lore as I did penetrating their accent. Much of their lore relied on the principle of sympathetic magic; the kind of magic involving the premise that "like attracts like." I quickly learned not to turn a basket or hatch-cover upside down on the deck of a fishing-boat because this might cause the craft to turn turtle in the water. In Grandmother Guptill's kitchen at Grand Harbour I was taught that this taboo extended to loafs of bread, which could not be inverted in cooling for fear that a ship might be lost at sea. My master-mariner relatives also used to talk of seeing the "shark's mouth". In later days, one of them explained that they had been talking about cloud-cover. Also called the "hake's mouth", this was a condition where the clouds seemed to rise from a single point on the horizon, fanning out across the sky. The "mouth" was completed when the clouds passed to the opposite horizon, seeming to disappear from view at another point. These clouds were sinister grey in colour and indented like shark's teeth. In parts of the Bay of Fundy, the appearance of this sky was considered a predictor of harsh weather at sea. The "mouth" was said to appear in the northwest or southeast just before a gale, and if it appeared in two quarters at once very dangerous conditions could be expected. I also had difficulty understanding the expression, "The sun is drawing her stays." I now know that the support ropes for the masts of sailing ships were called "stays". Shafts of sunlight, penetrating the clouds, spread out in triangular sets, reminding seamen of the stays on ships. These natural stays were used in divining the weather. If the sun was "drawing water" along these lines, wind would buffet until midnight and then diminish.


My great-grandfather, who sailed the wind-jammers, used to recite this little poem as a teaching aid: If the wind comes aft the rain, Set the topsails back again; But if the rain comes fore the wind, Then you topsail halliards mind. The first situation, of course, suggests that clearing and good sailing weather will follow, the latter that the sails should be gathered pending a bad storm at sea. There is much more of this individual witchcraft in sea-side communities. My island relatives also suggested that winds from the east carry rain, but that if they backed off, clockwise, through north, to south to west, it would clear. If the storm winds moved counter-clockwise it was held that one stood "in line" for the other half of the rain. Other weather poems I've heard: Southern glin, Wet skin. (A glin is a glint, a momentary appearance of the sun.) Rain on the flood Creates only scud; But rain on the ebb, Means better in bed. (Scud is low fast-moving clouds, which quickly "blow themselves out.") Red sun at night, sailor's delight; Red sun in the morning, sailors take warning. In ancient times, weather augury, as well as other kinds of divination, was based on the observation of birds in flight. My grandfather, Chester Guptill, of Grand Harbour, Grand Manan, knew that the "chickens" could be consulted to determine the weather. Addressing his wife, I once heard my grandfather say, "Mother Carey's chickens fly high and tight. We can expect a big breeze today." My grandmother did keep chickens, but her name was Eula rather than Carey, so this remark remained a puzzle for many years. Grandfather Chester had great patience with my youthful lack of practical lore, and at the south-facing window explained that it was well for fisher-folk if the "chickens" were quiet and described broad circles near the ground since this predicted fine weather, but the tighter and higher they soared the worse the "blow" was likely to be. When the birds flew close to the water in open circles nothing of great moment was expected, but the higher they flew, and the closer the members of the flock, the greater the danger to men and boats. A storm lay ahead when, "Mother Carey's chickens fly fast and high." He said that the oldest birds were the ones to watch and when one planned on going to sea it was hoped that they would be relatively inactive. Grandfather said that these birds flew in the quadrant of the sky from which wind might be expected to blow, except when they ventured over land, in which case a westerly breeze was ahead. On Grand Manan, it is still said:

The higher the Storm Petrel, the harder the wind. When Mother Carey's chickens ride high early in the morning look for a westerly. The tighter and higher they circle, the worse the storm. When they fly close to the ground expect 1213 fine days. As a mainlander, I spent years puzzling out the identity of these high-flying "gulls". Mother Carey's "chickens" are not seagulls but the less common Leach's Petrels, Storm Petrels or possibly an allied species. Like the members of the crow family petrels were not universally liked since they often dropped excrement on house-tops. While this is no longer a problem, the faeces used to be washed by rainwater into the rain-barrels used to obtain and store water for drinking and bathing. Lightkeepers used to discourage the petrels by keeping cats which would ravage their nesting burrows. The period of nesting is the only time when this oceanic bird is found on land; usually between June and Sep-tember. The petrel which breeds and resides in our region is not the Storm Petrel but Leach's Petrel an eight inch sea-bird, sooty brown in colour with dark grey wing coverts, a white rump and a forked tail. Tufts says rather definitively that these are the birds locally known as "careys". One folklorist has identified Mother Carey's Chickens as the Storm Petrel but naturalist Robie Tufts says otherwise: This oceanic traveller nests on islands in the northeastern Atlantic...Although it has been recorded a number of times in the western Atlantic all North American 1314 records of sightings have proven inconclusive. At least these birds nest in the right quarter to belong to Mother Carey! Roger Tory Peterson on the other hand confirmed the presence of a single Storm Petrel at Ungava, Labrador. It is apropos that such "accidentals" are usually driven to our shores by high winds. Few winds cross the Atlantic against the prevailing south-westerlies, so most of our strange petrels and shearwaters are blown this way on hurricanes that originate in the West Indies. It took me a few decades to understand the underlying reference when my grandfather pointed out the high-flying, tightly-circling storm-petrels as forerunners of storm. The answer lay hidden forty or more years in the future! A few years ago, I discovered that the surname Carey is preserved in the southern counties of England among ex-Scandinavian, ex-viking, sailors who settled there. They actually bear the name of Karri, the Teutonic-Norse god of the wind, whose "chickens" were the Storm Petrels. It is uncertain when the "chickens" became "Mother" Carey's, but although the Norse god Karri is unknown in Atlantic Canada but Mother Carey's chickens are common spirits of the region. As Mother Carey's chickens represented, indirectly, the god of the wind, their actions were considered to presage what he might do later in time. The Norse god Karri is unknown in Atlantic Canada but Mother Carey's Chickens are common

Unknown Robie Tufts, unknown


spirits of the region. In the Teutonic-Scandinavian northland, one of the three elder gods was Karri, or Carey, the god of the north-wind, whose "chickens" were the sea-birds. The relationship between the spirits of the air and those of the water has always been close. As Helen Creighton notes: "The wind always comes in with the tide." In Norse mythology the wind god Karri was considered one of the triad of elemental-gods, his brothers being Loki, the god of underground fire, and Hler, god of the sea. Mother Karri (or Carey) was the goddessspirit of the upper air, the mate of Karri. The major population of this outer island in Charlotte County is of Teutonic origin. My "racial extraction" on my antique birth-certificate claims that I am "Dutch" on my mother's side, and this once seemed verified by the oversized wooden shoes which my great-grandfather Judson wore at home. Grandfather's people, the Gubtaels, or Guptills of Grand Manan Island thought of themselves as the "Dutch", but they were actually "Deutsche" Teutonic lowlanders who came to Atlantic Canada by way of Catine, Maine. The Guptills might technically claim to have been Loyalists, but they were actually neutral Yankees from Maine whose ancestors came to the region when George II of England became the Elector of Hanover, Germany. At the conclusion of the American Revolutionary War's hostilities they were forced to pick sides with either the United States or Britain. They chose to move to Grand Manan because they were fishermen and their cash crop tended to favour the British side of the boundary. The Guptills, like many of their kind were not actually from Hanover. Most of the Deutsche immigrants were from the Palitinate and Wurtemberg of southern Germany or the provinces of Hesse, Saxony, Hamburg, Holstein, and Lubeck in northern Germany; and from places bordering Switzerland and the Netherlands. One of their early communities was Lubec, Maine, leading to the supposition that some spoke Plattdeutsch, or Low German. (This was the lineal descendant of Old Saxon, which also produced the language called Anglo-Saxon, the roottongue of English.) Because these fisher-folk acquired English and at first referred to themselves as the "Deutsche", their neighbours assumed that they meant "Dutch". Maritimers have also noted a connection between Mother Carey's chickens and the spirits of the dead. Some men have suggested that "seagulls are the souls of dead sailors", but they are actually runners. The spirit of men was always prone to wander, and excepting that required to maintain body functions, exited each night through one of the body openings. In ill health the spirit, or runner, frequently wandered from the body for considerable periods and departed finally and completely at death. A man who returned from the land of the dead, told the Micmacs that: Every person has a skitekumj, a ghost body. For a man or a woman, it looks like a black shadow of a man or woman. It has hands and feet, a mouth, a head, and all the other parts of a human body. It drinks and eats. It puts on clothes, it hunts and fishes and amuses itself. With a moose or a beaver, it looks like a black shadow of the animal. For a canoe or a pair of snowshoes, a cooking pot, or a sleeping mat, it looks like a shadow of these things, these Persons. 1415


This supernatural being was sometimes seen as a "dead light" and was called the runner or gopher by those living in English-speaking Atlantic Canada. The departure of a "soul" was witnessed on Tancook Island off the coast of Nova Scotia is described in Creighton's Bluenose Ghosts: When Sebastian died, when his last breath came, the whole shape of him came out his mouth like he was a young man, no longer old and wrinkled, and it went out the door. 1516 The ultimate resting place of these "shadow men" is not usually given but my Grand Manan Island relatives said that drowned sailors inhabited the souls of birds, especially the Storm Petrel, "Mother Carey's Chickens". (Note: Mother Carey's Burying Ground is an ancient Indian burial site found on the Old Meadow, Road in Kejemukjik Park, central Nova Scotia.) Appropriately, it is interesting to note, the old Teutonic god Karri's (or Carey's) duties included collection of the souls of the dead. A resident of Riverport, Nova Scotia explained that: Every time a sailor drowns he takes (his external soul moves to) the soul of one of the birds at Ironbound (island). This bird is sort of like the Stormy Petrel or Carey's Chicken. The people (in this vicinity) will not disturb the birds because 1617 that would disturb the souls. This belief varies only slightly throughout the Maritimes and Celtic England; at Peggy's Cove a seaman identified gulls as "Carey's Chickens" and in Cornwall, England, it is suggested that 1718 "the souls of old sea-captains never sleep; they are turned into gulls and albatrosses." Elsewhere in Britain it is guessed that the souls entrapped in petrels find no rest until the death of the bird. While Mother Carey's Chickens presaged the coming weather they were not actually the cause of it. The Indians felt that weather was raised by sea-spirits who were sometimes abetted by the spirits of the wind. Other manitous, male and female, were thought to reside beneath the waters on the southern reefs of Grand Manan; in the swirling Deer Island whirlpool known as the Old Sow and at most other tidal races along the shoreline. All of these were capable of affecting the weather. The Norse explained the situation this way: Aegir (the god of the sea) and Rann (Aegirs's wife) had nine beautiful daughters, the Waves, or billow-maidens. These maidens had snowy arms

Helen Creighton, Bluenose Ghosts, pp. unknown Unknown Unknown



and bosoms, long golden hair, deep-blue eyes, and willowy, sensuous forms which were fascinating in the extreme. The billow-maidens delighted in sporting over the surface, clad only lightly in a transparent blue, white, or green veils. Although playful they could be moody and capricious, varying between sullen and exciting. In the latter state they approached madness, tearing their hair and veils and flinging themselves recklessly upon the rocks; chasing one another and shrieking aloud sometimes in joy, sometimes in despair. These manic-depressives rarely put on a performance except to impress their brother-spirit, the Wind. Another theory was that the weather was controlled by the haegtesse, an Anglo-Saxon waterspirit often incarnate in the greater shearwater and in the deep-water hagfish. The related words haegl, hail and haegl-faru, hailstorm, reflect her supposed ability to control the weather. This creature is best known to mariners in the bird form, a gull-like animal whose upper parts are all dark brown, with a narrow white band at the base of the tail. These birds are only met by deepsea fishermen who term them "hags" or "haglins". They are probably given this name because their dark bodies are thought to draw rain clouds and for their unappealing habit of eating the offal which fishermen throw overboard. The hagfish is an even less appealing incarnation of this sea spirit being a miniature version of the sea-serpent. Technically called "Myxine glutinosa" but more often named the "slime-eel", this sea-animal is a cyclostome rather than a fish, its closest well-known relative being the lamprey eel. The upperside is coloured a mottled purple-black, the underside is a dirty white or yellow. This haegetesse is rarely seen since it burrows in the mud at extreme depths, occasionally emerging to scavenge dead fish. Typically, it penetrates them with rasping teeth, and cleans out the flesh leaving the skin intact. It is considered the lowest ranking craniate vertebrate, ranging to no more than three feet in length. The eyes and ears are rudimentary and to make up for this the head is surmounted by eight tentacle-like feelers. The round mouth harbours a three-sided "tongue" completely covered with horny teeth. Myxine is an escape artist being able to knot its body and pull itself through fine mesh netting. <I remember seeing one of these grotesque looking creatures at Maritime Biological pushing itself through one inch chicken mesh, although its's body was about four inches across.> It is also witch-like in its capacity to elude capture by secreteing a huge mass of slime which makes it very difficult to handle. Most interesting of all is the fact that it suffers no harm from extensive cutting, scratching or abrasion, having an immune system that prevents all infection. Whatever the cause, the vagaries of wind and ocean storm can occasionally increase normal tidal values by as much as ten feet. The memorable Saxby Gale of 1869 had exactly this result and it completely flooded the Tantramar Marshes between Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Our ancestors believed that the tides were driven by the power of the gods, and, if the sun and moon are seen as incarnate gods, they were absolutely correct. The rise and fall of the waters is, in fact, driven by the gravitational pulls of the earth and the moon. The Bay of Fundy is not the largest, deepest, most sinister place in the world, but it does have the greatest tidal variation. There are tides which range in excess of 30 feet at the port of Bristol in southwest England; within the Japanese Sea of Okhotsk; as well as near Anchorage, Alaska; and at St. Malo in Brittany. The Leaf River, in Ungava Bay, Quebec also has noteworthy variations between high and low water, but the Fundy is in a class by itself. Tides are hardly a feature of the flat continental shelf below Cape Cod. Even off Nantucket

Island there is hardly any rise and fall, but within the curve of Cape Cod, a scant 20 miles distant, the waters regularly climb through 10 feet. Further north at Bar Harbour the range is 12 feet. It is 20 feet at Eastport, Maine, and 22 feet at St. Stephen, New Brunswick. At Folly Point closer the head of the bay, the average is perhaps 40 feet, but point-for-point tidal range is higher on the northern shore of Nova Scotia than on the southern coast of New Brunswick. The highest tides are said to be at Noel Bay, on the Minas Basin, where they regularly peak at 50 feet above low water. As water is channelled into the Bay of Fundy the size and shape of the bay amplify this effect and create giant tides. As Michael Burzynski has said, If you stand on the beach at Alma, the water rises fast enough to pace a slow walker: If you remain (at the water's edge) for three minutes your feet will be covered, in an hour the water will have crept up over your body until only bubbles mark your place. 1819 At this location, far up in the bay, the beaches are backed by steep rock faces which are difficult to climb and unwary strangers, as well as some knowledgeable locals, have been caught by the unexpected run of an incoming tide. Because of the huge range between high and low water it is entirely possible, at this location, to stand in water at one time and come back six and a half hours later to find the water a full half mile distant. When the tide is low visitors regularly walk on the bottom of the ocean. The sea-spirits were certainly pushed to the limit by the Groundhog Day Gale which took place February 2, 1976 when: ...the normally staid upper bay became a roiling, seething maelstrom. The storm worsened as the tide rose, sending waves crashing onto the road between (Fundy) Park and Alma and onto the swimming pool parking lot...Beach rocks of more than a hundred kilograms were found (afterward) lying in the road, and pieces of 1920 the wharf littered the beach. A small freshwater marsh near Alma was breached by the sea, and all its plants and animals were swept out to sea along with a boardwalk that spanned the marsh. Since water is 800 times as massive as an equal volume of air, it has the potential energy to do a great deal of damage. Fortunately, the fishing boats at Alma were out of the water at that season but the waves completely pulverized the wharf and breakwater and trees a half mile inland were killed by salt spray. These unpredictable incursions of the sea explain why the Bay of Fundy has ten times more dyke land than all the rest of the Atlantic coast. As sea levels have slowly risen the rebound of

Michael Burzynski, unknown Unknown


the earth's crust has attempted to compensate but the net affect has left some lands behind the dykes as much as one to three feet below sea-level. It has been estimated that the range of the tides is still increasing, and has increased by about 15 cm per century. By this reckoning the seashore camps of any Norsemen who visited the area might now be under thirty feet of water. When the French first colonized the region the waters would have been, on average, nearly two feet lower than at the present time. On the other hand, geologists have noted that "tides are filling the head of the bay by 2021 and this accounts for the burial of the Fort Lawrence Forest. The Fort deposition" Lawrence Forest stood in the sunlight during the late 1700's but is now 30 feet below adjacent mud creeks. The Missequash River, which used to supply neighbouring Fort Beausejour, was entirely navigable to its source when the fort fell to the English in 1755. It is now completely silted up for many miles to the west. THE PEOPLE OF THE DEEP Historians do not regard myths as a kind of history so it is understandable that A.A. Mackenzie, the author of The Irish In Cape Breton (1979), was a bit dismissive of "the old pishrogues and 2122 At that, his Celtic blood could not be totally ignored and after saying that, fantasies." "the superstitions of Ireland did not export well," he partially recanted, "nevertheless it seems 2223 a few fairies made the (trans-Atlantic) voyage with the Irish." But Catherine Parr Traill seems to have been uninformed, or unobservant, in stating that "this 2324 is too matter-of-fact a country for supernaturals to visit." She was certainly presumptuous in maintaining that "Fancy would starve for lack of marvellous food in the backwoods." 2425 Then again, she did not live on the east coast, where spirits of sea still stalk living men and women. The ancestors of men in Atlantic Canada had reason to suspect the presence of dark worlds in the deep recesses of the sea, for they would have come across relics and remains similar to those which have come to light in the present century. In the 1940s, submerged fresh-water peat bogs were found off the coast of ten of the eastern United States. When these were subjected to pollen analysis they were found to comprise a tundra bordered by boreal spruce and pine trees and dating at least 12,000 years back. There was evidence that these vast estates were first submerged about 8,000 years ago. Within this vegetable matter researchers were surprised to

Unknown Mackenzie, A.A., The Irish in Cape Breton, 1979, pp unknown Ibid, pp unknown Traill, unknown Traill, Catherine Parr, Unknown





find the larger bones of many animals including "fifty teeth of mammoths and mastodons, bones of musk oxen, a giant moose, a horse, a tapir and a giant ground sloth." 2526 Fluted stone projectilites, which were associated with the Clovis culture, were also recovered, and in Chesapeake Bay men dredged up what had obviously been a part of a huge Indian oyster midden, located a full 43 meters below sea-level. There are two possible interpretations of findings of this sort. We think they are relics of a distant past when these lands stood above the sea, but a person with less information could logically believe that such dredgings represented a deep sea-world where creatures very like those on land mixed freely with better known fish and water mammals. This may have led to the Celtic invention of An Domhain; the Nordic, Vanaheim; and the Wabenaki notion that men and other animals walked the floors of the deep. But, our world-view may be in error! Remember that Manan mac Ler, and his kind, have always employed persuasive magic when it comes to disguising and keeping their realms from mortal men. With this comment, I think first of Mr. Albert Mosher who was troubled by the ethereal 2627 I remember also the stories of water"seaweed man" of Toby Island, Nova Scotia. dripping water-plant festooned forerunners that continue to announced death at sea by coming into the homes of relatives on land. There is also a new phenomena which came with the development of scuba diving; the so-called "rapture of the deep". Usually blamed on an overaccumulation of nitrogen in the blood, this is said to result in hallucinations and colourful interpretations of the various senses. Or at least, what has been observed is very like the effects of nitrogen narcosis, except that it does not normally effect divers at depths less than 60 feet. Those who have experienced troubles underwater are apt to blame "bad air", although that is now less probable that in the immediate post-war years of diving. Those who are less sure, are likely to credit "diving on Sunday," or equally errant nonsense, the probable truth being a too impossible to utter. We have one account of an experienced diver in the Passamaquoddy region (at least 30 years ago) in a day when a few people still worried about the propriety of doing anything on Sunday. It must be understood that the diver was, himself, an atheist, and the dive was to take place in waters much under 60 feet, so their should not have been problems associated with "the bends" or hallucinations brought on by oxygen deprivation. He had a weir repair scheduled for after the weekend, but knew that Monday's weather was looking surly. As Sunday dawned warm, sunny and calm and he did not wish to face dangerous seas just because of a superstition against working on Sunday, he and his friends set out hoping they might be mistaken as an boating party of inshore pagans. This diver was not always cold sober, but his drinking was restricted to land, vomiting into a mouthpiece being a certain gate to eternity. The diver was submerged for about seven minutes when he suddenly came to the surface, spit out the mouthpiece and cried out, "Get me out of

Unknown Unknown


here! Now!" Back aboard the tender, his crew looked over the oxygen bottle and the breathing gear and found nothing amiss, but the diver insisted that something was decidedly out of sorts in the waters of the Bay. As he had gone down into darkening waters, sand particles seem to sweep away his vision and at ten feet he got the impression he was being stared at, and later that he could hear voices, muttering in the waters. When he reached the bottom, it appeared sunlit and clear of sand, and there on the bottom lay a gigantic black shape, which he at first took to be a ray. However, as he approached this creature its edges became blurred and it vanished atom-by-atom. At this the sea-bottom darkened and he felt himself crowded by unseen presences who began to tear at his diving-suit, and rip at his tanks and mouth-piece. He came up, without further ado, noting that he had never felt such fear in a decade of diving. It is possible that this diver came across one of the sea-folk such as the British morgan. The stories of the morgan are persistent in British folklore. At her best, the morgan is seen as a vampire-like, raven-haired beauty but by the harsh light of day it is invariably noticed that the pupils of her eyes are red, her skin white and dried, and her fingers and toes are webbed, like many of the sea-people. This is the same morgan who is known in the western highlands of Scotland as the Bean-sidhe (sidhe-woman). Sometimes dubbed the "huntress", the morgan is always after game (although she considers animals of the wild to be her responsibility as well as her quarry). All in all, a frightening sidhe to meet below, or above water! In any case, the area surrounding the Maritimes and the Bay of Fundy certainly provides an excellent habitat for the sea-spirits to live in. Always a retiring people they require an area which can provide great privacy. The landscape of the waters around the Maritimes is ideally suited to their needs. The Gulf of Maine, located southwest of the Bay of Fundy, has a rugged bottom of troughs, basins, sea mounts and rises at various heights of from 20 to 180 fathoms below the surface of the sea. Excepting the long funnel-like channel into the Bay, the Gulf of Maine is an almost enclosed pre-glacial valley. (Not so many sidhe reside further south where the Nantucket Shoals and Georges Bank which once formed uplands have been over-ridden by vast deserts of sand which were deposited at the glacial front; a marked contrast to the valleys of the Gulf with their rocky boulder and gravel-strewn bottoms.) There are no deep-holes comparable to that which underlies the Gulf of Maine anywhere else about the coast of the Maritime Provinces but there are ten, of much less area, on the Scotian Shelf, immediately south of Nova Scotia. There is nothing comparable to even these on the part of the continental shelf that supports Prince Edward Island and the Magdalen Islands. Here the sea-bottom is relatively shallow and featureless, an average depth for the sea being perhaps 35 fathoms. This may explain the distribution of the various sea-spirits throughout the Maritime region as they would naturally gravitate to the areas which provide more hiding places. The southern continental shelf may be without magic, but our own is not, being so strikingly irregular that the term "shelf" is almost a misnomer. Here, the undersea shallows vary in with from 100 to 400 miles. Two major troughs carved by moving ice and outflows from the continental glacier cut across this shelf extending from what is now land to the slope. The largest trough is a furrow between the Grand Bank and Georges Bank (located between Cape Breton and Newfoundland). This first trough was once the bed of a much longer Saint Lawrence River. The other channel, runs from the Bay of Fundy, under the Gulf of Maine and once served a much longer Saint John River. This trough used to pour waters over the shelf between the now submerged Georges Bank and the Scotian Shelf.

A smaller version of the deep valley of the Gulf of Maine lies immediately south of Grand Manan Island. Here the shallows of the Grand Manan Banks plunge to the Grand Manan Basin which is nearly 200 fathoms below the surface. (Other deep troughs and basins lie well in against the land mass of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Maine, perhaps cut from the rock by glacial action.) The Bay of Fundy itself appears to be a block-faulted valley, modified by glaciation. It is a wonderful place in every sense of the adjective. There is still some quarrel over the matter of whether "Fundy" is derived from the Portuguese "profundo" (meaning deep or mysterious) or from the French "fenda", split into two parts. Either of these meanings is descriptive: the Bay is 116 fathoms at its mouth but approaches sea level near the head of the bay. Immediately south of Fundy National Park the bay splits into the northern Chignecto Bay and the southern Minas Basin. From the mouth to its deeply forked heads, the bay is 290 kilometres long. The lower bay is a place of low but rocky coasts with many islands, numerous coves and inlets backed by stone or boulder beaches. At the head of the bay this gives over for vast mudflats and tidal marshes often backed by towering cliffs. At the best of times, when the sea is well-behaved, the Fundy basin receives 100 cubic kilometres of water with each tide, a volume equal to the daily discharge of all the rivers on earth. As a result, the rivers are subject to tidal bores, their levels being suddenly raised with the passage of a wave-front. These are found, in some measure, on all rivers but are particularly pronounced on the Petitcodiac and Saint John rivers, in New Brunswick, and on the Avon River, in Nova Scotia. The speed of inrushing water is increased at any narrowing of the land and has been estimated at 8 to 10 knots in parts of tributary off the Passamaquoddy Bay. It is 6 to 8 knots where Petit and Grand Passage penetrate the northern shore of Nova Scotia and on the bottom an oceanographer named Daly found that "excavation by tidal scour is going on 2728 Digby Gut admits 21 million cubic feet of water into Digby Harbour at a apace." rate of 5 miles per hour with each tide. This has created a situation where the passage is 80 feet deeper than the seafloor; a perfect residence for the sidhe. A similar situation is found in the Minas Basin where a race of 7 to 9 miles per hour has gouged three holes in the sea-bed, each about 200 feet deep. Here one researcher found that "in the calmest weather the waters seethe and boil and whirl along as if they were in a gigantic cauldron." 2829 The Reversing Falls at Saint John have been partly created by tidal excavation of the river bed and these waters are very active at low tide. Only in the lower bay where waters wash shallow shores does one find low current velocities. The people who inhabit these deep troughs and gulleys are numerous. Almost anyone will recognize quickly the English mermaids and mermen. There are also the havfolk, meerweiber (sea women), watermoome (water mothers) and marmaelers (sea children) of Germany and Scandinavia; the morgans of Brittany; the sirens of the Mediterranean; the ben varrey of the Isle of Man; the ceasg or Daoine mara of Scotland; and the merrows or mara warra of Ireland to

Daly, unknown Unknown


count only a few. None of these sea-peoples differs significantly from the others, which explains the commonality of the sea legends which can be found locally. Regardless of ethnic origin the people of the area share similar folklore and views about the sea-peoples. The superstitions of local seamen are legion, and illustrate the fact that spirits of the sea are not unknown even in this post-pagan era: In our waters it was thought a very bad business to name ships after pagan characters, since Christian tree-spirits had nominal control of the fate of the vessel. The first "Fairy Queen" to sail between Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island had a very short run and had to be replaced with another called the "Fairie Queene". The resort to an older spelling did not appease the spirits. This ferry-boat was lost on the maiden voyage and no scrap of ship or crew or passengers has washed ashore. I remember that our Grand Manan fishermen, many of whom were of Teutonic origin, considered sailing into blue water a good omen (blue was the colour of Odin's mantle), but were more ambivalent about green and yellow seas (sidhe or fairy colours), which they thought presaged storm or danger. However, this depended on the ancestry of the fisherman: Working with the Department of Fisheries at Chance Harbour, N.B., I was introduced to the idea that some fishermen refrain from painting their house and boats blue, and even carry the superstition to the point of disliking greeting cards featuring bluebirds. This prejudice appears linked to the fact that Odin wore a sky blue hood and a similar mantle flecked with grey "an emblem of the 2930 Later blue was represented as one of the colours preferred sky with its fleecy clouds". by the svartalfar, or black-elves, of Scandinavia, who were not fit company for honest Christians. Grey mittens were also avoided for fear of attracting grey skies, and black suitcases were forbidden aboard ships because they might sympathetically bring on storm. Locals also said that it is extremely bad luck to have a crow cross the bow of a ship and these black-birds (which frequent the seashore) are the totem-animals of the sea-gods in both Celtic and Norse lands. Corduroy cloth looked too much like waves on the sea to be favoured as wearing apparel by seamen. As children we were warned against spitting in the hold of a ship, for fear it might afterwards flood with water while at sea. To spit into the hold of a ship was also thought a bad business. Once I tried this out on a shore-bound hulk, got into a fearful argument with a cousin, toppled her into the interior and left her there. This led to exceptionally bad personal luck, but this taboo was really meant for ships on the water. Since spit embodies water, which used to be seen as a fraction of the sea-god Hler, it was felt that a greater mass of sea-water might soon be added to the hold. The prohibition against whistling is similar. Raising the wind in a small way, it was felt, would attract the attention of the sea god, and soon there would be a surfeit. Their were many sea-spirits both greater and lesser to be guarded against. When the god Woden was displaced by Christian myth, he was sometimes left in control of the north-wind and the Raging Host, eventually even his name was forgotten in favour of newer Sabbath-breakers such as Charlemagne, Frederick Barbarossa, or Herla, a mythical king of England. Whatever name was substituted, the "god-spirit" continued to be the patron of seamen and controller of wind,


although one he was no longer ruler of his element but instead was condemned to hunt forever through the realms of air. Interestingly, the path of his movement, like that of the Indian wendigo, was always against the sun. From this it may be implied that turning a ship to follow the path of the old god might sympathetically raise the wind, even where it was not wanted. It is interesting, therefore, that when my brother and I piloted our first craft in search of biological specimens we were not wise enough to know that one should not turn a boat against the natural progression of the sun, but we were perhaps saved by the fact that most channel markers are set to avoid this happening. Walking counter-clockwise, or against the sun, used to be referred to as going "widdershins" or "withershins". A "wither" is another name for an Anglo-Saxon witch-wand and dancing against the sun was an element of the rituals of the witch. The Gaelic "boabh" and the Scandinavian "norna" were also into fire-festivals which involved dancing at the "left-hand of darkness". To quote an old salt, "Never turn a ship to the left, always to the starboard; back out and turn starboard. Always go with the sun even if it takes a long time to set that course; anything else 3031 is bad luck." This is incomprehensible except in terms of very antique beliefs. My own Clan Mackay contains an uncomfortable number of left-handed people, who were once described as "sinister". Obviously the old left-oriented gods and sea-spirits were strong: dextrous, or right-handed, individuals have never been labelled: "inclined to the left, ill-omened, 3132 unfortunate, baneful, evil, and/or malignant." It is among the sea-people that we find the explanation for many local superstitions, including those against cats and women at sea. The Anglo Saxon god of the sea is Eagor. The Saxon word "egre", suggests the nature of this magical giant, who was certainly "eager". The first meaning of the adjective was, related to taste; an eager substance was saline, sour, or acrid, like the ocean-waters. The current meaning of the word suits the elder god as well where the god is described as "a gaunt old man with long white beard and hair , his claw-like fingers clutching 3233 Within memory Trent boatman, sighting convulsively at everything within his grasp." 3334 Eagor, the god of a particularly large wave, would shout: "Beware, Eagor comes!" the sea, made a vocation of pursuing and overturning ships (and is still in the business), but it was his wife, Rann, who had a weakness for young seamen and gold. It must be understood that gold (and other valuables) lost at sea, or near the intertidal zone, was considered the ultimate property of the Eagor, and was consequently his wife's property as well. Rann's name means robber, and she was (and is) as greedy and insatiable as her husband. Her

Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown




favourite pastime was to lurk near dangerous shoals, spreading her sea-net to entangle men and their broken vessels. These men she would "invite" to her cheerless undersea realm, a seabound Valhalla. This goddess of death for those who perished at sea, entertained these men lavishly in her caverns agleam with the reflected light of stolen gold and silver. She was addicted to gold and was nicknamed the "flame of the sea" for this reason. Some Fundy fishermen used to say that the phosphorescence, seen at the surface, was light reflected from the deep sea. To win Rann's favour our ancient ancestors were careful to carry gold on any sea passage, knowing they might need it to earn the favour of the sea-goddess. Those in this New World who believe we no longer attend the old gods will be surprised to learn that both my grandfather and my great-grandfather placed coins beneath the mast when their vessels, ships, or boats were built. Ship builders still place a coin beneath the mast of every fishing vessel, being careful to place the "head" uppermost to prevent the ship from "turning turtle". This is no local abberation, the same means of securing the "luck of a vessel" being recorded at Saint Andrews, Saint John and Saint Martins, in New Brunswick, and from the ports of Parrsboro, Victoria Beach, West Jeddore, Allandale, and Liverpool, in Nova Scotia. They were not alone. At Vogler's Cove and Port Medway, N.S. "when ships were built, a five 3435 An dollar gold piece was put where the mast was stepped into the keelson, for luck". interviewee at Liverpool, N.S. told Helen Creighton: When building a ship, money was always put under the mast for luck. Sometimes the owner would give a quarter (which was then fabricated from sterling silver) 3536 but if they didn't, the men would put pennies in themselves. Gold was always considered most acceptable and when, "a Vanderbilt ship was being dismasted 3637 it was thought a gold piece was sure to be there, but all that was found was a cent." When the Bluenose II was launched from Liverpool, N.S., in 1963, she went to sea with Rann's offering beneath her main mast; a ten-cent piece carrying the silver image of the Bluenose I. To be on the safe side, the builders also included a silver dollar and a Spanish piece of eight. Apparently the gods were appeased, for at her launching, the new ship swung about, so that her bow faced the open ocean. Another good omen, which other people would have attributed to the ocean spirits, was the burning away of the fog just fifteen minutes prior to the launch. The interaction of men with the old gods of the north is seen clearly in the case of Rann and Mhorrigan. The original sea-cats were probably Rann and her Celtic equivalent, Mhorrigan, daughter of Dagda (the god who was guardian of the mythical cauldron of the deep). Like the cat both ladies were independent, temperamental and capable of great fury. Their husbands

Unknown Helen Creighton, Presume Bluenose Ghosts... pp unknown Unknown



were constantly experiencing difficulty caused by their wives' tempers. (As an interesting side note: their are some phrases in the English language which suggest the general view that cats are untrustworthy. There is catawumpus, a humorous aside indicating something slightly askew or out of order; and cat ice: a thin layer of ice, under which the water has retreated, and thus is incapable of supporting weight.) Both these ladies were the death-goddesses for men who died at sea, and both were avaricious, demanding tribute in rare metals from all who came into their realm. Like the Indians, certain Fundy fishermen return the bones of fish to the sea without being quite certain what they are about. I've heard my relatives say, "Here's a bit for the old cat", without any intention of propitiating anyone or anything. Considering the temperament of both these ladies, it is hardly surprising that sailors should have hoped to calm them with offerings. English folklorist Ruth L. Tongue has managed to find an old tale that may be apropos: There was a gentleman had a beautiful daughter who was bad at heart, and knew more than a Christian should. The villages wanted to swim her (put her to trial for witchcraft), but no one dared because of her father. She drew down a spell on a poor fisherman, and he followed her for love wherever she went. He deserted his own troth-plighted maid, though he was to be married in a week, and he ran away with this other, who he took to sea unbeknownst to the rest (of the fishing fleet). A storm blew up from her presence and all was lost for having a woman on board, though none knew it. It was she that had whistled up the storm that drowned even her own lover, for she had no good for anyone. (A magician tracked her and) turned her into a four-eyed cat, and ever after she haunted the fishing fleet. That is why still men will not cast their nets until halfpast three (cock-crow time) - my uncles won't -and why they always throw a bit 3738 back into the sea for the cat. Rann and Mhorrigan were both jealous by nature. Since sailors were considered to be "married to the sea" it would hardly be wise for them to arouse their spiritual wife's, Rann's or Mhorrigan's, jealousy. Thus sailors were loathe to have women on board a ship. At the very least, Grand Mananers used to hold that ladies should not go aboard boats under construction and should stay clear of the christening and launching ceremonies. Helen Creighton found that this superstition was still widespread at the middle of this century, and one master-mariner went further: A woman is considered bad luck, even to christen a boat. Once a boat was being launched (and) a woman wished to christen it. She came to the launching but the owner wouldn't allow it. Nevertheless, the vessel turned over when it was 3839 launched and it always had bad luck.


Tongue, Ruth L., Unknown Creighton, Helen Bluenose Ghosts, presumed, pp. unknown


This belief sometimes went so far that in some of our own coast villages, men would actually return home if they met a woman on the way to a proposed sailing. Some of my grandfather's friends said that fish wouldn't bite with a woman aboard, disliked meeting women before they set sail, and even railed against wearing an item of women's clothing on the water. Nevertheless, my grandmother, Eula, successfully managed my grandfathers fishing boat, the Lois and Isabel II after grandfather's death. The fear of raising the jealous nature of these goddesses extends so far that some mariners were loath to carry people on board who are perceived to have feminine pursuits. Thus, some of our skippers, just like their European cousins are, loathe to transport lawyers, tailors, dressmakers and clergymen. A Scotsburn, Nova Scotia, man even warned men against wearing woman's hats at sea, apparently concluding that some of the female spirit of wantonness (and storm) would thus attach to the men and through them infect the ship. Cats, being the totem animals of Rann and Mhorrigan, are clearly equated with women for 3940 another fisherman said, "If a cat passed a fisherman's path, he would go home." There was a particular passion against black cats, and another respondent explained that "other 4041 It is a law of sympathetic cats are taken on board as mascots, but never a black one." magic that "like attracts like", consequently sailors were particularly afraid to carry a cat which might attract even more attention from the goddesses. Black cats were seen as magnets for black clouds, a black sea and stormy weather. The fascination for black cats goes beyond just Rann and Mhorrigan, though certainly they were one of the main reasons for this superstition. In addition to the Norse and Celtic mythologies some of the new immigrants brought remnants of the Swedish Teutonic mythology with them. Like Rann and Mhorrigan, the Teutonic goddess Freya also has strong ties to the cat. This helps to explain why our local men, many of whom were of Teutonic origin, were so fascinated by animals, especially cats, and most especially black cats. If my grandparents knew of the old northern goddess called Freya, whose name is embodied in Freya's Day or Friday, they said nothing of her. However, while cats of every stripe were often taken aboard the Lois and Isabel and other fishing-boats, my grandfather and his kind excluded black cats. Since cats were antiquely attached to these goddesses it was considered very bad luck to throw a cat overboard. The person who did the throwing was certain to be killed during that tour of sea-duty. If someone wished to prevent a ship from leaving Grand Harbour, one had but to place a black cat under a basket and keep it there for several hours. The animal was likely to become impatient at the confinement and the more it hissed and snarled the more the "goddess" was annoyed and the greater the storm at sea would be. According to our references, Freya was invented by the scalds (bards) of Teutony as a suitable consort for Frey, god of the sun. Freya refused to remain a poetic abstraction though, and she was soon worshipped at the side of, and sometimes

Unknown Unknown


instead of, Frey. Freya's nature is reflected in her name which is related to freca, warrior; and freccian, bold, agile, war-like; a person likely to act precipitously or on a whim; an emotionally exuberant individual. As she was beautiful, graceful, and a believer in free love, the male gods of Asgard (the Teutonic home of the gods) appreciated her company and even deeded her the realm called Folksvang. Though a goddess of love, Freya was not a pleasure-loving pussy-cat, but had rather martial tastes. She lead the Valkrs to the battlefield where she claimed half the dead for her own kingdom, the rest going to Odin's Valhalla. When Freya travelled it was in a chariot drawn by cats, which were said to be her favourite animals. While her cats were loving creatures, they were also sensual and somewhat cruel. They were considered personifications of the main interests of the goddess. The coal-black cat was considered the embodiment of these characteristics at their extreme, which explains why they were credited with demoniacal attributes by the Christians, who wished to supplant Freya. In spite of the Christians' best efforts Freya's temples were maintained for a very long time, and the last (in Magdeburg, Germany) was not pulled down until as late as the reign of Charlemagne. In the end, the Christian missionaries were able to convince people they should toast Saint Gertrude or the Virgin Mary rather than Freya, and they banished her to the highest peaks of Scandinavia and Germany. In the latter country, Brocken is still pointed out as Freya's mountain-home, and is said to be the gathering point for her daemon-train which descends yearly upon the land on Valpurgisnacht (Midsummer's Eve). If this elder-day "goddess" is understood to be represented by black cats, then the prejudice against them makes more sense. Freya is also responsible for many of the superstitions concerning Friday since the spurned pagan goddess is particularly virulent on Friday, which remains her day! The word from which Freya's name derived evolved into the Middle English frek, which used to have more of the sense of an individual gifted with pow-ers due to an unusual physique or mentality. To be a freak or "freca" was a relatively good thing in the old Anglo-Saxon kingdom, this being the 4142 name given a "warrior". Understandably, the Gaels who put up with the marauding Norse saw Freya's people in a different light and their word "frid", which was borrowed from the Saxons, came to mean a more freakish person, "a gnome, pygmy or elf; idiomatically, an itch, a pimple, a tetter, or any other small annoyance." Later, freaks were thought of as physical or mental monsters; the Normans, who conquered the Anglo-Saxons in 1066 were of a similar mind, and the new Anglo-Norman word "frick" was used to identify individuals who were out of the mainstream of human looks, intellect or accomplishments. (In present day English freaks are no longer loved deities but the very short, the very tall, the fat, the thin, and feared individuals of great strength or intellect. Freaks include men who are feeble, grotesque and eccentric. We have exhibited these men and women, sometimes loved and applauded them, often laughed at them, frequently exploited them, and at worst locked them away "for their own good" because they repelled our sense of normalcy.) If the freaks had their day, it was "Freogedaeg" (free-day or Freya's day), and a number of local superstitions crowd about it: On Grand Manan Island we were told that it was unlucky to build a weir on Friday. There are few Grand Mananers who know that the day is sympathetically related to a pagan goddess, whose magic may still be active, but their lore insists that fishermen


should never contract to have a boat built on Friday; should never have it launched on that day, and should avoid sailing then if at all possible. Those who did sail on Friday would definitely refrain from dipping nets into this sea-queen's element on that day. It was also considered bad policy to reopen a mine on Freya's day. In Nova Scotia Creighton learned that it was bad luck to fish on Friday or to set sail on that day. 4243 Carole Spray was told that lumbermen hired on Friday would prove unreliable and "freakish" and would never stay through a winter of wood's work. 4344 Thus, throughout Atlantic Canada, there is a definite aversion to starting new projects on Friday. The worst of all possible combinations was considered to be Friday, February twenty-ninth, a leap-year combined with Freya's Day. It has to have been chance but the worst day in Maritime history has been recorded as "Cold Friday", February eighth, 1861. In her diary, Janet MacDonald noted: N.W. clear and the coldest morning that was ever seen in New Brunswick. It is beyond description, the intense cold, the dreadful cold. N.W. wind. People could not go out any time without freezing. The cattle and horses in their stables were so cold and trembled so, some had to cover their horses with skins besides their blankets they was covered with in common. They are not doing anything 4445 today only keeping on fires and seeing to the cattle.... To all of this we can only say that this day was particularly favoured as a starting time by Odin and his Aesir. Further, his viking descendants thought it auspicious to set sail on Freya's day. Throughout Britain the fear of Fridays once made perfectly good sense, since the viking Norse preferred to set sail on Freya's Day, and the person who commenced new work was almost certain to be called upon to take up arms. Friday was not a day for making plans or travel as there might be unexpected (and unpleasant) interruptions. Christians said that Good Friday (God's Friday) was inauspicious and in the Roman Church it was a day of fasting and abstinence. In most of Christian Europe it became Hangman's Day, with executions taking place on a day that already had a bad reputation. Other superstitions revolved around the numerous lesser water folk which inhabit every nook and cranny of the deep. Mankind has long had a tenuous relationship with these water folk. Although the oldest accounts describe the water folk as bloodthirsty, they also relate how the water folk would tell the for-tunes of human friends and even moaned from the water to warn those in danger of drowning. People who did not turn aside were assumed bent on suicide. The nixes or other sea folk were perfectly within their rights, therefore, to pull these people down, salvaging their spirits by eating the body. The sea folk pursued humans with sex in mind, but the men were described as "polite and attentive


Creighton, Helen, BNG, pp unknown Spray, Carol, Unknown Unknown



4546 suitors." In the latter-days it was claimed that the two peoples often visited and always shared with one another in common harvest festivities. One woman who stayed with the sea folk, in their underwater homes, for many years reported that her only complaint was 4647 the fact that they did not use salt on their food.

The sea also harbours little folk many of whom are relatively harmless. Among these are, notably, the eel-grass, or sea-weed people. A marine version of the land-locked moss-men, they are completely covered with plant matter. They differ from their land cousins in having no real corporeal bodies; instead they use the wind to gather and form temporary humanoid constructs of seaweed and grasses. My great-great-grandfather Judson observed one while camping at Long Island during the lobster season. While waiting the return of a co-worker, he was three times roused from bed by noises, which he thought were caused by his partner. Fin-ally, assuming that a joke was being played on him, he left his shelter with a flashlight. In the dark, he confronted, "a man all covered with eel grass." He laughed, certain this was his friend but as he approached the figure it disintegrated into a pool of water and leaf material. Although most people were in the good books of the sea-folk, or could be with some propitiation, there was another category of men, the "jonah" or "joner" who were not so lucky. The jonah was the equivalent of the jinx or droch-chromhlaichean (Gaelic children of the twisted bad one, ie. the old Celtic day-god Chrom, whose idols were overthrown by Saint Patrick) on land. The lat-ter phrase was most poetically translated as "the rent-payers to hell," of whom my Scottish forbearers spoke. They and the jonahs are the accident-prone, as they are called in present-day psychology. These are not to be confused with witch-women, or ministers, who were considered sometime-jinxes. The nature of the magic surrounding the jonahs is more tenuous but mariners claimed that "Some ships were bad luck along with the men who skippered them, and some couldn't make 4748 money under the best captains known!" My own relatives on the islands frequently noted that, "some ships were considered bad luck ships, and so were the men who skippered them." In this case some uncanny relationship was suggested connecting the luck of the craft with that of her master. The skipper was not always implicated, but a fisherman from North 4849 This same Head noted that there was "often one man who (was) know as bad luck." sailor noted that there were bad-luck ships, whose misfortunes seemed unrelated to any human on board. These ships, or some crew member on board seem to have incurred the enduring wrath of the sea folk. Nothing, not even propitiation, could change their luck.

Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown




Although thought the cause of calamities at sea ranging from poor catches to shipwreck, people who were plagued in this way were not considered responsible for their condition. Their problem was a birthright. It was formerly believed that men were born with invisible guardians, known as followers, fylgies, or nornir (later called guardian angels). As one Norse man said, "If the Nornir direct the destiny of men, they shape it very unequally. Some have a good life 4950 and rich, but some have little wealth and praise, some long life, some short." In the prose Edda, Har is supposed to have commented: "The good Nornir and well descended shape a good life; but as to those who meet with misfortune, it is caused by the malignant Nornir." 5051 In our provinces it was even suggested that jonahs were sometimes individuals whose souls had been displaced by malignant creatures as a result of witchcraft while they were children. But the original jonah had incurred the wrath of God, which suggests that the curse under which they lived was not fate alone. The original Jonah was the Biblical character who was commanded to go to Ninevah and speak against the evils of that place. Instead Jonah took a boat in the opposite direction. He was lost overboard, swallowed by a whale, and remained alive in the whale's belly for three days and three nights before escaping to go on with his mission of God; hence, a person fated to be unlucky. While the jonahs were not so unfortunate as their original namesake they did live under a black cloud and were usually recognized on their first fishing trip or sea-voyage, which ended ineffectually. They were invariably blamed for poor fishing or accidents at sea, and quite frequently the malevolent spirits that followed them seemed to attach themselves to the ship even after the responsible party had become shore-bound. The jonah was an unwelcome addition to any ship's crew for fear that his bad luck would tend to rub off on his ship-mates. As children, we were cautioned against meeting these individuals on the road in case their constant misfortune rubbed off on us. Objects of constant use took on more of the spirit of an individual than those encountered infrequently. In pagan theology, all objects contained spirit. In the mid-fifties my father's cardealership acquired a hoodooed Chevrolet, appropriately named "the grey ghost". The original owner had extremely bad luck with this vehicle, and the hoodoo apparently remained, for the car was sold, and traded, on a monthly basis. For those who were not fated to be unlucky there were still num-erous hazards to avoid. While on the Island, I was told that seamen do not like to dream of horses, but it was some time before I realized that they associated such dreams with a prediction of high seas. This is not an uncommon belief, Helen Creighton has said that she was told: "No sailor wants to dream of 5152 horses because they signify high seas." The "horse from the sea" is a well known part of classical mythology, but they are also noted in Celtic tales. In Ireland and Scotland the first

Unknown Unknown Creighton, Helen, BNG, pp unknown



people to populate the land were said to have been the giant Fomors (sea-people). It was claimed that they originally occupied undersea palaces in the mid-Atlantic, where they could "breathe" the oxygen contained in water. When they came to land they were forced to don the skins of fish, seals or some other sea-creature. These "wet-suits" enabled them to breathe the ordinary ocean water. On shore they would set aside their sea-suits and usually assume human shape, although they were competent shape-changers and able to assume the form of any plant or animal, on any scale. (Later these giant people were often described as cannibalistic, oneeyed, and malevolent in their dealings with "true" men.) These shape-changers could appear among men in acceptable human form but they often preferred to come ashore as horses or centaur-like creatures, human from the waist up and stallions or mares from there down. In their horse form these sea-people were known as the kelpies and necks and were not unknown in our Maritimes Provinces as Kelpie Cove, Cape Breton shows, taking its name from the species. The Teutonic people would also have recognized these sea-horses. Their sea-ruler, Aegir, or Hler, most agreed lived either beneath the ocean in the Cattegat (between Denmark and Sweden) or at his land palace on the Island of Lessoe. His nine beautiful daughters, the previously mentioned, sometimes sullen, capricious and dangerous, billow maidens, were often represented as horses of the sea. In my grandfather's time, none of this was even a memory, but the Islanders obviously retained the belief that even the dream image of a Neck might sympathetically raise the seas against them. Some of these fishermen shared the western notion that white is a colour of ill-omen, and this also derived from the fact that few wished to see "Mananan's horses" (or storm-waves). It was reasoned that "like attracts like" so sailors avoided carrying white stones as ballast and shied away from white clothing, particularly mittens which might be noticed by an observant sea-spirit. The memory that these sea-spirits could be propitiated lingered on Grand Manan: a white horse was thought to be good luck provided one bowed three times at its passing, or spit and made a wish. Maritimers who had been influenced by Christian practices thought it necessary to add crossing the fingers to the rites of the white horse. The mer or sea-women were mistresses of the ocean. In the far north they were called the Havfrue. Mer-women tended to be more mature women in appearance than some of their river kin, but were nevertheless very beautiful. The husbands, the mermen, were Odin-like fatherfigures who sat on cliff tops and, if seen, were considered to presage good luck. Like the mermaids they were seen in a youthful form, which was handsome except for disconcerting green hair and beard, and pointed teeth. (For two Canadian sightings see Columbo, Book of Marvels, p. 115-117.) She was seen in the water especially when a light mist pervaded. The mermaid's appearance was taken by fisherman as a prognostication of both storm and ill fishing. People who were drowned, but no body retrieved, were considered to have become permanent residents of the undersea world, living with the mer-people. The mermaids shared the characteristics of the billow-maids. As with the billow-maids, the trouble with the mermaids was the fact that they changed their minds as often as the shape of their bodies. As a result they experienced little domestic bliss and spent most of their time pursuing unfulfilling relationships with human sailors. This is hardly surprising since Rann, the Norse goddess, and Mhorrigan, the Celtic goddess, were the prototypes for the mermaids. (Hler, the Norse god of the sea, could control all of his element except his wife, and he and his Celtic counterpart Ler, were constantly trying to cope with the difficulties that naturally arose

from the cat-like conduct of their wives.) The mermaids, like Rann and Mhorrigan were beautiful shape-shifters and the mermaids of Somersetshire, England, were termed sea-morgans after their matriarch. Their songs were irresistible to men and often the mermaids would use their song to lure unsuspecting sailors to their deaths. (Their only failure involved a deaf youngster, who had psychic abilities. One of these mermaids sought to divert this youngster into quicksand. However, while admiring her face and figure, the boy was repulsed by the mermaid's seaweed-green hair and since he could not hear her voice he was able to drive her off.) An Englishman, stationed in colonial Newfoundland, committed his sighting of a mermaid to paper. That got about the same reception as UFO reports in our day, so Atlantic fishermen have since been careful to guard their tongues after seeing sea-suited mer-people. Nonetheless, their are still reported sightings of the mer-people in the maritimes. In the worst cases these sea-women might shape-change into an entire female appearing at the fires of fishermen to beg for mercy. If she was accepted into their circle the mermaid would frequently entice one of the seaman to death by drowning. My great-grandfather, Judson Guptill, who was an autocratic realist, spoke obliquely of one: when he was younger, he said, a beautiful girl, dressed entirely in a white water-soaked shift had come to the fire of fishermen at Dark Harbour, Grand Manan. They had turned their backs on this "ship-wrecked" maiden and when he asked why, he was told that she would entice one man from the circle and lead him to drowning. At the best, they explained, her coming pointed to a severe storm at sea and ill luck with the fishery. Exactly the opposite, they said, was forecast on seeing a merman perched on a cliff top. In truth, the mermaid possessed the usual duality of the fay being capable of both good work and treachery. Although "...A mermaid from the water rose and spelled Sir Spenser ill..." 5253 they were know as fortune-tellers. These mermaids had great skill at foretelling the future and were said to have predicted that Christian IV of Denmark would be a male. My grandfather told of the white woman, who guarded the Thoroughfare, a narrow channel of water leading into Grand Harbour. He claimed that more than one mariner had been rescued from storm by the sea-light of this water-woman. One individual even saw her, walking upon the water, lantern in hand, leaning into the wind, and pointing the direction of the outer harbour light. John Craig's light, which appears in the sea near Chaleur Bay is sometimes associated with the Northumberland Strait fire-ships but it is possibly the separate phenomena of a mermaid's light and unrelated to the loss of his ship and crew. Despite the distinctly nasty streak of some mermaids, not all disastrous shipwrecks should be blamed this species. As this next little tale illustrates, the blame may sometimes be laid at the feet of humans. John Kent, who gave his name to Kent Island, one of the satellites of Grand Manan, lived happily on the island. His widow, however, was reputed to have become an aged an ugly recluse, full of associations with evil spirits. She cursed the island, and men in general, promising no one would live on it after her death. While she lived, an English brig piled up on the Murre Ledges after following the directions of a "white woman". Leaving their badly holed craft the crew came to the Kent homestead, the only one on the island. The captain was visibly shaken at the figure of Mrs. Kent, who greeted them at the door. As they sat at the fire, the


chief turned to his mate and whispered, "That woman, she has the face of the witch who led 5354 It seems that Mrs. Kent had used her "follower" to lead the ship me into the rocks!" astray. While I worked for three years with the Department of Fisheries as a biological technician, I was posted to Lorneville, N.B. where I hear the tale of Margot and the sea-witch, which I later found detailed in James K. Chapman's reprint of Frank Hatheway's column "Highways and Byways", first published in the Saint John Globe early in this century: As a maiden, Margot, of Lorneville, was courted by a young fisherman named John Benson. Once, just before their marriage, he invited her to take a sea-trip with him to Smuggler's Cove, near Sheldon's Bluffs. Here they apparently offended the sea-people by intruding on a cavern where "the mer-maids danced". The cliff face had a narrow entrance which admitted visitors to a cavern which measured sixty by twenty feet and was of about the same height. This place was of local interest because of the effects of light entering a large opening in the roof, a fine display of stalactites, "stone icicles", and its reputation as the place "where mermaids danced." The young couple were exploring the cave when a mass of rock and earth fell blocking the entrance-way. The tides of the Bay of Fundy are the most extreme in the world and the couple knew that the sandy floor of the mermaid's cave would be under ten feet of water in three hours. In a growing flood of water they struggled to move rock debris but it soon became apparent they would have to find another way out, so Margot stripped away her long petticoat and they tied and braided the strips into a thirty foot rope. Afterwards the two of them fashioned an "anchor" of stones to one end of the rope and heaved it up through the opening in the roof hoping the kedge would entangle itself in bushes. Wedging himself into the chimney to take the strain off the make-shift "rope" John shimmied his way to the open air and pulled his girl friend up after him. Next year, the two were married in the church that bears the golden salmon on the steeple, and soon a son was born. In September of that year, a vicious gale ravaged the coast. Afterwards Margot went down the beach where she discovered a woman lying in the surf. Thinking the woman was the victim of an accident at sea, the girl hurried to her, only to be rebuffed with these words: "Give me back John. His father was mine and he is my child!" Afraid of this apparition, Margot hurried to her mother, who tried to soothe her daughter, but admitted that the old rumours suggested that Adam Benson had once had a strange bedfellow and that John was the result. That October, the Lorneville fleet was off Cape Spenser when a northeast gale developed. At nine o'clock, as the boats rushed to the Head, the harbour light broke loose and the villagers were forced to build a beach fire as a guide for their men-folk. Forty-four boats returned but among those lost was the blue-hulled boat (the use of the colour is reserved to offspring of the sea-folk) owned by John Benson. The sea witch may also have had designs on Margot and John's child, for the next summer, at the lowest tide, he pointed to the sea and asked 5455 his mother, "Mummy, what is that noise, that singing out there?" The Aboriginals would probably not have been surprised by the diver's encounter with the

Unknown Chapman, James K., Highways and Byways... pp, Unknown


morgan, or the fishermen's with the mermaids, as the serpent people, and their homes, were well-known to them. The great whirlpool just below the Reversing Falls, at Saint John, N.B., was once considered the manifestation of a water-mntu (magician). The Saint John River empties into the Bay of Fundy. At Saint John harbour, the maximum tidal rise is 28 feet, but the variation between high and low water is always sufficient to power the falls and the whirlpool. At Indiantown, the underwater topography is known to be unusual, the bottom pockmarked with caverns, to the extent that the riverbank on the west is unstable. Within my memory, houses have been lost to the water-spirits, the earth that contained them sliding down the slippery water-lubricated rock slope. A little further south, the bottom of the river is elevated in a submerged dyke. At low tide, water falls seaward over this obstruction; at high, it plunges in the other direction, creating the unusual phenomenon which we call the Reversing Falls. The volume of water moving in the River is enormous, but geophysicists have been puzzled at the appearance of a still more southernly whirlpool which forms on the flood tide. This feature was noticed by Nicholas Deny, who wrote one of the earliest books about Acadia. He noted that some objects passing this point in the river were carried down while others were simply whirled 5556 about for hours in the heart of the maelstrom. To discover if it was safe to travel on the waters of the Saint John the Maliseets would hurl huge logs toward the vortex, each fixed with propitiatory gifts, for example pouches of tobacco. If the logs seemed be in danger of being sucked to the bottom extra gifts would be fastened to arrows which were then shot into the logs. If the logs were merely caught up in the outer ring of waters and eventually escaped to the sea, no danger was anticipated if they launched their canoes. If the logs popped up in the outer harbour with the gifts removed this was considered a good omen, but if log and all disappeared the Indians found something to do on shore until better results were promised by their divination. The Wabenaki would have agreed with the Maliseets in this matter. They also believed that there were sea-spirits to be found in tidal races and whirlpools in the area. It was noted that there was once a general upwelling of waters near the island of Miscou, and this place was believed to be favoured by a sea spirit known as the Gougou. There were also the Ugmugs, similar monsters, who took the form of sea-serpents and sought out turbulent waters. These shape-changers were never restricted to that form and could also occur as huge, visible or invisible, sea-people, similar to the mer-folk, or as an undeterminable species of marine animal. Whirlpools were said to be caused by the spiral swimming motions of the Ugmugs. The Micmac Indians of New Brunswick were absolutely certain that the mntu known as the Jipijka'muj was responsible for the enigmatic action of this whirlpool. According to Micmac Legend the Jipijka'muj were the kin of the horned serpent. Although they could walk the earth as human kind they were also able to sit be-neath the water and breathe after the fashion of the Celtic god Kai. In the ocean deeps, it was claimed, they encamped in the same fashion as surface dwellers. This World Beneath Water was but one of the Six Worlds of the Abenaki. These creatures could swim in either fresh or salt water but, like the German dwarfs, they also

Deny, Nicholas, Unknown

had the ability to pass through layers of rock, their passing creating earthquakes at the surface. When they travelled on land they frequently left trails gouged in the surface of the earth. If they willed it they could assume sea-serpent shape, and by sexual liaisons could create others of their kind. All the Jipijka'maq had a red and a yellow horn which were objects of great sexual power, sought in both North America and Asia as an aphrodisiac. The use of the jippikam wsmul (horn of the serpent people) as a magical binding agent against the puoin (human magicians) is commonly recounted: Where one shaman was unable to overcome another, he might attempt to bind him to a tree using a pair of magic horns. The horns could be worn in the hair of ordinary individuals without effect, and if the opposing magician was not well versed in the craft he might be persuaded to try them out as a decoration. If he consented the horns would take root in his head and grow outward seeking a tree. Finding one it would hall the puoin there and bind him in place, where he would remain until death. The horns were virtually indestructible and could only be broken away it they were encircled with red ochre from the underside of sunlit clouds. 5657 The earliest European report of the Water World was given by John Gyles who was captured by the Indians in 1689. His diaries were published as Memoirs of Odd Adventures, Strange Deliverances Etc. at Cincinnati in 1869. While he lived among the Maliseets on the upper reaches of the Penobscot River, he heard of a girl who came upon "a very beautiful hunter, sitting cross-legged beneath the surface of a spring." We quote: There is an old story told among the Indians of a family who had a daughter...so formed by nature and polished by art that they could not find her a suitable consort. At length while this family were once residing under the White Hills, called Teddon, this fine creature was missing, and her parents could learn no tidings of her. After much time and pains spent, and tears showered in quest of her, they saw her diverting herself with a beautiful youth...swimming, washing, & etc., in the water. This beautiful person who they imagined to be one of those kind spirits who inhabit the Teddon, they looked on as their son-in-law; and according to custom they called upon him for moose or bear, or whatever creature they desired, and if they did but go to the water-side and signify their 5758 desire, the animal would come swimming to them. This girl was not the only one lost to the race of men. While the females of the Abenaki were usually seduced to the lake or ocean-world, men were often entrapped through their curiosity.


Unknown Gyles, John, memoirs of Odd Adventures, Strange Deliverances, Etc. pp Unknown


5859 Thus, Ruth Holmes Whitehead tells of The Man Who Married Jipijkamiskw. This is the story of an individual who lay in one of the trenches left by a travelling horned-serpent to test the truth of the old legend that these were "places of Power". Once in the trench he was shapechanged into a Jipijka'maq. While in that shape he was immediately attracted by the scent of a female who had passed that way before, and followed her trail to the ocean. Beneath the water he came to an encampment where he was immediately accepted as one of the water-people. He would have been lost to his tribe except that his conversion was seen by his brother, who went to a powerful magician living in their village.

At the place of the transformation the magician dug another trench, placed water in it, and floated "Things of Power" on the surface. He then climbed a nearby tree, cutting away the limbs, as he moved upward. Shortly two horned-serpents appeared coiling themselves, snakelike, at the roots of the tree. One of these he mesmerized and the other he decapitated with a wooden knife. From the body of the horned serpent crawled the missing hunter, who was given a powerful emetic so that he would vomit up the speech of the Jipijka'maq. Turning to the brother and the enchanted man's earth wife, the magician noted that one more day spent beneath the waves would have destroyed all of the man's human soul. If the local Indians are correct in these beliefs then there must be many of these sea-serpents in the Fundy region as there are plenty of turbulent areas in the vicinity of the world's highest tides. One such place that come to mind is the Wolves, which lie east of White Horse Island and the West Isles of Passamaquoddy Bay. A visitor to Deer Island characterized these small islets as: ...the angry Wolves, on which, if you visit them, you may be imprisoned for days by the wild surf that pounds hungrily against their gaunt sides when there is the least provocation of wind or water. 5960 Commenting more generally, Grace Thompson (1908) said that the passages through the many 60 1 6 islands of the West Isles were a complex of "tides, eddies, ledges and whirlpools." The same could be said for the shoal waters of Campobello, and those of Grand Manan and Briar Island. There is a great tidal rip off Cap D'Or and a similar situation across Chignecto Bay at Cape Enrage. There is also Kennebec island off the coast of Maine, and this name was given to the Marine creature that controlled the surrounding waters. Similarly, the most southernly tributary of the Saint John River is the Kennebecasis, whose name indicates the place of the kennebec. Something like the famous Utopia Monster may have inhabited this long stretch of deep water, which has a great surround of mythology. Minister's Face, near Rothesay on the southern bank

Whitehead, Ruth Holmes, The Man Who Married Jipijkamiskw, pp unknown Unknown Thompson, Grace, Unknown 1908



of this river is well-known as the site of Glooscap's major camp in New Brunswick. When the lowland Scots settled Deer Island, N.B., they found another Indian water-demon residing off the south-western shore, a spirit that occasionally materialized as the world's second-largest off-shore whirlpool, The Old Sow (also written Auld Sou and, in colonial times, Auld Sough). The Old Sow cannot be exactly located on any chart as it wanders along the western coast of Deer Island "soughing" as it goes. This is no misprint but "sow" probably is, since the name is attributed to Gaelic settlers. The word in Anglo-Saxon (sough), and in Middle English (swough) describes a sound somewhat like that of a wind moving through dried leaves; a rushing, rustling, sighing, dead noise. The Scots form is sou, a word used to describe the sound of an agonized pig, the sermon of a particularly boring preachers, or a sing-song chant that had the same effect as listening to the unaccompanied drone of a bagpipe. The Scots also described a very noisy party as one held "at full sou", while moments spent in a graveyard reflecting on mortality were entitled "a quiet sou". An Old Sough was also, appropriately enough, a salt-water drain (a secondary meaning of seugh, being sewer). The Old Sow can be roughly located in the Passamaquoddy Bay. This bay is enclosed on three sides by land; on the east by Deer Island, on the north by St. Andrews, and on the west by the State of Maine. The Saint Croix River empties into the bay on the north-west flank and on the north-east Letete Passage allows the flow of water to and from the Bay of Fundy. Letete Passage is a very troubled place during the incoming tide as water is squeezed into a relatively shallow, narrow space. Incoming waters can attain as much as twelve knots in Letete Passage, although their speed decreases as the waters fan out into the greater area of upper Passamaquoddy Bay. From the upper Passamaquoddy Bay the water runs, literally, down hill, as the sea-bottom slopes from north to south. This combines with the narrow mouth of Passamaquoddy Bay (where the basin again compresses its contents, as the waters are squeezed between Deer Island Point and Eastport, Maine) to form an area of great water turbulence. This is the sometime location of the Old Sow, the world's second most powerful marine whirlpool. (The more powerful, and better known, Maalstrom, or grinding stream, is located in the Atlantic Ocean off the west coast of Norway. Like the Old Sow it has a reputation for harbouring a marine monster, but this creature destroys ships on a pair of underwater grindstones.) The southern extreme of Passamaquoddy Bay was traditionally considered by the Indians to be the mouth of a mntu, a magical sea-monster, maybe one of the horned serpent people of the Passamaquoddies. The Sow must have been known to the "wiwili'mecq'" of the Passamaquoddy tribes, as the Utopia Monster was said to pass through these waters to reach Maine. Among the Passamaquoddies it was said that this marine monster was a magical manifestation of a rival Micmac chieftain who was their implacable enemy and that his passage caused the waters to be in such turmoil. My family recognized how dangerous The Old Sow was and acknowledged its supernatural origin. I have heard the Guptill branch of my family refer to the Old Sow as Grundalmyer (any region where the water was disturbed was a "grundal") and refer to stretches of clear water as "thoroughfares". The Grundalmyer was also used as a bogeyman to keep us children from unsafe sea-side places. This was a puzzle finally solved after five decades of questions. Grendel will be remembered by some as the horrendous villain of the epic poem Beowulf. Grendel is the equivalent of "grinder", which fits nicely with the character of a powerful natural

phenomena. The original German "Grundalmyer" probably translates as something like "Grendel's mother." Grendel's mother in Beowulf lived beneath the water, thus "Grundalmyer" would also seem to correspond with the Anglo-Saxon "granung-mer-wif" (groaning seawoman): an appropriate title for the spirit of a dangerous whirlpool. In retrospect, some of my grandfather's superstitions embody good sense. Along with others, he suggested that one should never investigate a local disturbance of wind or water on an otherwise featureless and calm ocean. This includes noised caused by disturbances, such as the moaning of The Old Sow. The fishermen of our waters still listen for the "rote" as a guide to their position on the water, particularly when they travel in fog. This word is the Anglo-Saxon "ryn", the Old Norse "rauta", to roar, and defined any sound heard in nature produced by the sea, wind, thunder or some unidentifiable agency. When Henry Hudson made his voyage into Canadian waters, he was keenly aware of everything within hearing and in his diary we read: "Wee heard a great "rutte" or noise with the Ice and Sea...We (therefore) heaved our Boat and 6162 A Sable Island fisherman once rowed to towe out our ship farther from the danger." explained that he was "listening for the "rote" as "the surf breaks with a different sound all along 6263 the shore." The Old Sow squeaks her way along the coast and is more often heard than seen. The few who have observed this explicit reflection of some sea-demon say that the funnel penetrates to the sea floor, that its noise is at full sough, and that a modern fishing craft has barely the power to back off from its lip. I've been in the waters of Letete Passage in a small outboard-powered boat, and the experience makes me understand why experienced fishermen have been lost in similar craft while making the journey from the island to the town of Saint Andrews. Not all of the water monsters were sea-bound. Locally, the most famous of the land-locked water monsters is the Lake Utopia Monster. There are unquestionably better known seaserpents, the Scottish Loch Ness Monster comes first to mind. The American writers Judy Allen and Jeanne Griffiths recorded creatures in Lake Shuswap, Cowichon, Pohengamok and Okanagan in British Columbia; found one travelling between the Manitoban Lakes of Sinnipegosis, Manitoba and Dauphin; two more in Lakes Simcoe and Mocking Lake, Ontario; 6364 As American journalists, they can and found a final specimen in Lake Duchere, Quebec. perhaps be forgiven missing the Lake Pohenegamook Monster, sighted more than 150 years ago in Quebec, just a few miles from the New Brunswick border. Then again, they did note that their list only applied to "sightings which have been made by two or more people, possibly backed up by Indian legends, and where the witnesses seem to be reliable and have given detailed descriptions and perhaps drawn sketches. Were the lakes to include every one covered by Indian tradition, or every lake carrying a single report of something unusual, then none of

Hudson, Henry, Unknown Unknown Allen, Judy & Griffiths, Jeanne, Book of the Dragon, NY, 1979, pp unknown



the large lakes would be omitted." 6465 By their own criteria, they should not have by-passed Lake Utopia when they compiled their Book of the Dragon, NY, 1979. This is an attempt to redress that slight. This story is of particular interest to my family because of its location, which corresponds to the area in which the original family homesteads may be found. The first land deeded to Alexander Mackay is a little more than one mile north of Lake Utopia. It said that Governor Guy Carleton was the first to notice that some of the Loyalist grants were of "utopian" use, being at least partially beneath the lake. Hugh Mackay had established the first home at Bonny River following his stint in the Revolutionary War as an officer with the Queen's Rangers. Hugh selected tract #1 for the construction of his home at Bonny River. This was well away from the lake, as was another grant immediately south, a third at Second Falls, and a fourth on the east side of Lake Utopia. This last five hundred contains two minor streams, one of which Hugh named Colonel and the other Mackay. These empty into Trout Lake, which was a lumber-staging area coherent with Lake Utopia. The patriarch of our family in North America was Alexander Mac-kay, a Scot born on the old sod in 1776, just as the American Revolutionary War was becoming a serious conflict. His family was probably caught up in the Highland Clearances of Sutherlandshire since he moved to Glasgow, the catch-all city for displaced persons without work. By the age of fifty-one Alexander had accumulated enough money to wed Mary Matheson. Probable poverty, and the fact that three children born to them in Scotland died, may explain why they decided on a new start in Canada. Their ship landed in Saint John in 1829 and "Sandy" and his bride of nine years eventually settled in the hinterland east of Bonny River, then a very small village on the west bank of the Maguaguadavic River. Family tradition claims they were invited to the area, and given assistance in resettling, by Hugh Mackay. This tale is lent credence by the fact that Alexander and Mary's first land holdings consisted of 151 acres on McCoy Brook, which wound north from their homestead and emptied into the Maguaguadavic after crossing property that belonged to Hugh. McCoy is, of course, one of many varied "Englished" spellings of Mackay, the Gaelic form being the undecipherable "Mhacaoidh". Be that as it may, the family finally gained river frontage when they purchased 400 acres that had once belonged to mess-mates of Colonel Hugh. Near the bridge to Second Falls they built a modest cape cod house and took up farming and lumbering. Mary bore nine children but only the last, Thomas Alexander, survived to have offspring. Two sons who died were named Hugh Matheson Mackay and Eric Hugh Mackay, perhaps after Colonel Hugh, but their is no certainty in this, as the Gaelic "Usidean" is nothing more than the personalized form of the family name "aoidh". It is noteworthy that Alexander's last son was born when he had passed the age of seventy. Aside from the fact that he was vigorous, we know that he lived through more than two additional decades and died at the age of ninety-five. My great-great- grandfather Thomas remembered Alexander as short of stature and temper.


Ibid, pp unknown

Thomas Alexander Mackay was born in 1843. He married a local girl named Priscilla Williamson and they had eight children (again only one son, Wesly Hanson, had a male child). Unlike his father, Tom was tall and slight, with a drooping mustache and sandy coloured hair. He built a home on the family property and carried on a farming-lumber operation until his wife died. He spent his last years living with my grandfather at St. Stephen. My grandfather Wesly recalled that his father was a proud, easy-going man, whose main vanity was his clothing. Grandmother Mackay, a Stewart from Second Falls, thought otherwise, guessing his main failure was a taste for Scotch. The Stewarts of my grandmother's family were more "socially involved" than the Williamsons and the Mackays, their family having married into that of Arthur Hill Gillmor, a colourful school-master turned lumber baron, who had moved to St. George at the beginning of the nineteenth century. Two lumber ships were reg-istered in the Gillmor name and these carried lumber between New Brunswick, New England, and Ireland. At the time of his death, in 1866, old "A.H." held 50,000 acres of timberland in addition to his dams and water-power rights, which were located along the Maguaguadavic River from its source to its outlet. The Gillmor's base was at St. George, which is situated near the outlet of the Maguaguadavic on a spectacular gorge. The river, originating in the northern mountains passes through flat intervale land at Second Falls and Bonny River and tumbles downward through 100 feet at the flume. Arthur Gillmor's son, Daniel, constructed the watermill at Second Falls, a cascade that can still be seen. Successive generations of Gillmors maintained mills on both sides of the River here and on the Linton Stream, the latter the outlet of Digedequash Lake. In 1839, ten years after Alexander Mackay had emigrated, there were six sawmills huddled along the gorge, looking like eagle nests' clinging to the rockface. The deepest cavities were filled with alder bushes giving the place little sense of the water beyond its roar as it plunged to sea-level. The sawyers had set a network of planks above the gorge and moved without care in places where their lives depended on even footing. There are now five successive steps before water reaches the lower river, and all this is accomplished in 500 yards through a chasm that is only 35 feet wide. The last mill at St. George closed in 1967, but power generators associated with the last mill were updated in 1952 and continue to supply electricity to the grid. The important point, is the fact that the Maguaguadavic has never been navigable for anything larger than a salmon. Lake Utopia is about nine miles long and hour-glass shaped, varying in width from about oneand-a-half mile to a maximum of three mile. It was once a part of the complex that fed the mills of St. George parish. In the Victorian era, most of the logs were cut in the region northeast of Lake Utopia. Some were col-lected on the banks of the Piskehegan Stream, which is tributary of the Maguaguadavic River, but others were sledded overland and dumped into Mill Lake. Mill Lake Stream was once a sluiceway in-to Utopia, where the logs were boomed and loaded on horse-drawn wagons bound for Canal. The Canal was a dredged waterway, the western exit from Utopia into the Maguaguadavic. Some of the logs from all the drives were taken to St. George but "Gillmor and Jamieson" established a waterway at Canal, as did their competitor, Alfred Patterson. The "Gillmor and Jamieson" firm once had fourteen teams devoted to moving logs from Dam Lake, a little east of Mill Lake to their "Live-Wire" Mill. When great-great grandfather Alexander was 58, and his son 13 years of age, lumbermen working near the sluiceway brought home the first tales of sighting the Lake Utopia Monster. We don't know if Alexander was present, but the family took a proprietary interest in this

monster, whose home was a short walk south from their doorstep. The Utopia "dracan", or whatever, was first spotted in 1856 but it was 1868 before an attempt was made to turn it into a trophy. That year, the Saint Croix Courier said: Several gentlemen of St. George recently brought the monster of Lake Utopia to the surface by exploding twenty-five pounds of dynamite under the water near the Mill (i.e. the Mill Stream)...and four rifle shots were discharged at him. 6566 Apparently he had a thick hide because newspaper reporters for the New Dominion were attracted to the area by continued sightings. They criss-crossed the Lake by sailboat in August of that year, became disillusioned, and were about to return to Upper Canada when, "Lo! there it was about 150 yards from us. What I saw of it appeared to be about seven foot in length and 6667 perhaps two and one-half to three feet in height..." Additional coverage came in 1873 when Andrew Leith Adams mentioned it in Field And Forest Rambles, a travel book he published in London. Adams was convinced that it was a local hoax or at best "an extravagant delusion". Lumbermen, he admitted, "were suddenly disturbed by the splashing of some object, which some individuals asserted was fully ten feet in breadth and about thirty feet in length." 6768 An account for The Illustrated News of Canada published at about this time said that the Monster erupted from the water with a force which threw logs into the air, after which, "the water boiled and foamed as if a geyser had suddenly broken forth." 6869 For two days after this incident: ...appearances were alleged in different parts of the lake; and so positive were the residents that some monstrous animal was the cause, they set large hooks baited with salt fish and pork...The credulous asserted that a slimy track of some huge animal had been traced from the ocean to the lake thirty years ago...we were considered adventurers in sailing on the lake so soon after the above occurrence. 6970 After listening to eye-witnesses, Adams concluded that the effects described had taken place,


Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown





but could not see that access to the lake by a marine monster was possible "considering the 7071 He thought whatever had been observed might have been air geology of the place." and water vented from "sub-lacustrine rock fissures", or perhaps "shoals of eels or fishes in 7172 violent activity, or the result of a whirlwind." If the latter was the case, the old-timers would have more certainly tied what was seen as caused by the "little people". The historian, William Francis Ganong followed Adams to Saint George parish in 1891. His note book reads, in part: Mr. McCartney, an observant and well-informed resident of Red Rock, said that some twenty years ago he often saw the Monster of Lake Utopia while lumbering there; it was a dark red in colour, the part showing above water was twenty feet long and as big around as a small hogshead; it had two large flapping affairs like fins; no head was ever shown; it was much like a large eel; it never let anyone get near it but was often seen by lumbermen from the shore; he had seen it many times with his own eyes; he had also seen or heard of the great furrows in the sand which it had made; it disappeared about eighteen years ago and has not 7273 since been heard of by anyone. Ganong also interviewed James Woodbury, who reinforced the old story that the monster periodically moved overland between the lake and the sea. Others who were questioned described the monster as having "a dark red head" which a few thought resembled either an 7374 alligator or a horse. The next appearance of this great serpent was near the coast of Maine. Here it was seen by the entire crew of the schooner Madagascar, which was just about to land a load of coal at Lubec. During the morning watch, at 6 o'clock, on July 28, 1901, the vessel was standing under sail moving north along the coast at six to eight knots. The watch sighted an object on the starboard bow which had the appearance of a huge log. As they drew closer, Edward Ray, a sailor from Ellsworth, Maine, said that he thought the "log" was moving. The mate, Len Armstrong of Lubec, saw the object floating on the surface but was not as certain there was movement. As they approached within a sea-biscuit's throw of the object, the two sailors were astonished to see it raise a great snake-like head and glide sinuously away from the ship. They were close enough to observe minute details. In shape they said the creature came closest

Unknown Unknown Ganong, William F., Unknown Ibid, pp Unknown




to a snake; it was 30 feet long, covered with scales, ranging in colour from green to brown, and strangely refractive of the sun's rays. Along the back, from head to tail, they saw spinal points, which seemed an extension of the back bone. Just below the head was a huge dorsal fin, or spine; thick, dark in colour, and about the size of a man's hand. The crew agreed that the body's diameter must be about two feet, tapering slightly beyond the head, and drastically towards the tail. As far as they could see there was no difference between the body tone or colour from the top to the bottom surface of the animal. After the monster was safely away from this ship it lay quietly upon the water for a number of minutes, seemingly appraising the ship. For a half hour more, the men watched it make occasional fast skipping motions through the water, travelling only a short distance with each burst of energy. It appeared entirely fearless, showing no alarm at any of the tacks made by the vessel. In speaking of the incident Edward Ray told the "Saint Croix Courier" that he had been a seaman for nine years and sailed the Atlantic, from Africa to Labrador, but he had never seen anything in the sea that resembled this creature. Asked if he thought it might have been possible to trap the animal, he said that no crew could have taken such a massive creature alive, and he guessed it would have been dangerous to injure it with a harpoon. Again, the "St. Andrews Beacon" reported another sighting, August 2, 1906: This time the serpent was seen close to land by Thebold Rooney, keeper of the Sand Reef Light. Rooney thought that the monster had been drawn to land in the wake of schools of herring, which it may have been pursuing. If so, the monster was not after food, for after moving quietly about it moved away from the lighthouse in the direction of Clam Cove. Rooney got out his binoculars and reported the animal to be between 25 and 30 feet, judging by background objects. The head was small and snake-like and he guessed it to be the diameter of a weir stake. The keeper said that he might have taken it as a shark except for the lack of any dorsal fin. As the serpent moved out of sight it flipped up a "tail" in whale-fashion, and was lost to sight. Rooney said that this was not the first "sea-snake" he had seen in St. Andrews Bay. Several years earlier he had been in the company of several other fisherman when one went scudding by making "a great deal of noise". For their part, the editors of the newspaper supported the 7475 keeper noting he was "not a man given to seeing snakes other than sea serpents." Visiting the region, Ganong noted this flurry of sightings, and published a paper in 1907 edition of The Bulletin Of The New Brunswick Natural History Society, noting: For the past few summers the local papers have often reported the appearance of "sea-serpents" at Passamaquoddy and the Saint Croix. The animal is really there but it is according to testimony of observant persons, a White Whale...Locally it is stated that it came into the Bay with the war-ships during the Champlain celebrations, June 25, 1905. But in this belief we have nothing but an illustration of another wonder-tendency, viz. the habit of linking together, as


casually connected, prominent events which are merely contemporaneous; for the data in my possession shows that the animal was seen in the bay at least one season before 1905. 7576 Ganong remained interested in the legend: I have been on the lookout for some years past, during my trips to New Brunswick waters, for appearances which might sustain a sea-serpent 7677 preconception. Aside from the Lake Utopia sightings, which were all second-hand, he did uncover the "inconclusive testimony" of Dr. J. Orner Green, who thought that a similar creature occupied Lake Oromocto, many miles to the north. There was also the "celebrated case" of Mr. Eben Hall, who seems to have seen the wewiliamaq of the Passamaquoddies in the lakes of Maine. Although Ganong thought that this native of Saint Stephen gave evidence "in good faith" he was suspicious of the facts since Hall was making a living off the information on a lecture tour. Unable to convince himself, Ganong finally concluded that the monster was "floating logs" or, as Adams had suggested, up-wellings of gas. The trails across land, which the Indians said were left by the jipijka'maq, Ganong dismissed as Indian portage routes or trails left by well-fed 7778 beavers. The story did not end with Ganong. Several decades later Robert White, the foreman of a lumber rafting crew, watched in fascination as "a shining coil of black flesh" turned over within his log boom on Lake Utopia. The upheaval of logs which followed was seen by all of his workers and none of them thought that it look-ed much like escaping jets of water and air. Joseph Goddill later said that he frequently watched the animal sunning itself on the spring ice just before break-up. If the nuck was a log, or a group of logs, it must have been powered by an outboard motor because Victor Cook saw it travelling away from his location on the shore 7879 at a speed of about eight knots. In 1951, Mrs. Fred McKillop, a ninety year old grandmother, told the Telegraph-Journal of her encounter with the famous monster: It is still fresh in my mind, and I was never so frightened in all my life...The men had gone fishing (on Lake Utopia) and had left me to sit with two of my

Ganong, Wm. F., in The Bulletin of The New Brunswick Natural History Society, pp.


Ganong, Wm. F., Unknown Ibid Unknown



grandchildren. We were all watching the lake and it was beautiful. It was so clear it resembled glass and there wasn't a ripple showing. Suddenly, as I watched the water commenced to boil and churn and make waves which came in and broke on the shore. Then a huge creature of some sort emerged from the water, at least it showed part of its head and part of its body. It resembled a huge black rock, but it moved and churned all the time. I was alone with the grandchildren at our cabin, and was so terrified that I took the children and ran into the cabin and locked the door. After a short time had passed, I realized that whatever it was belonged in the lake and so we were in no danger. It was then that I went outside again and watched it. I had never before heard of the Lake Utopia Monster, and therefore, had no idea what it was. When the men returned home I told them about it and they 7980 said that must have been what it was.... These historic sightings of the Utopia Monster have parallels in the unwritten tales of the Woolastook and Passamaquoddy Indians, who once occupied all the lands surrounding the waters in question. It should be noticed that stories of the jipijka'maq (such as the story of the young man who is transformed into one) were said to be "atukwagn", or tales treasured as true representations of the adventures of the "saqwejik", or ancient Indians. The Abenaki-speakers distinguished a "jipijka'ma", or male serpent from the "jipijka'miskw", or female. The name is also seen in the literature as "chepitkam" (pronounced shep-it-kam). The general name has been translated to English as "horned-serpent people" and, like many of the sea-serpents, they too were said to be shape-changers. The horned-serpent people were probably attracted to the Fundy because of the unique geography of the region. Contacting stones of differing mineral content are thought magical, thus the entire Bay of Fundy must be afloat in strange energies. The basement rock of the Bay of Fundy consists of two distinct units, termed the Avalon (a peculiar happenstance in naming) and the Meguma Belts. Both of these are 600 to 400 million years old, but the rocks of these two units are drastically different: the Avalon rocks (outcropping in southern New Brunswick) having been formed in warm seas; the Meguma rocks (seen in southern Nova Scotia) deposited in a cold polar ocean. Although these rocks now lie close together, and even contact each other deep beneath the newer sediments and sandstones of the bay, their composition marks them as having been laid down and consolidated many hundreds, if not thousands, of miles apart. These two disparate units came together about 400 million years ago when the intervening land was dragged down into the earth's mantle and turned to molten material, while the ocean above it closed. Most of the rocks on the western and middle shores of the bay are of molten origin and very hard and resistant to weathering and erosion. The upper bay, however, is composed of soft conglomerates, such as sandstone and shale, and these are easily crumbled and carried away by wind, water and ice erosion. Such erosion created the bizarre Hopewell Cape "flower-pots", as


well as the stacks, cliffs, and grottos that characterize that damp dark place. In addition to the problem of erosion, this whole area is south of the hinge line for rebound. It is sinking at a rate of 30 cm per century, a fact that brings waves closer the cliffs, cutting them more deeply and thoroughly as each year passes. One hundred and eighty million years ago the Bay of Fundy was an uplifted region which supplied sediments to adjacent areas giving rise to Devonian and Permian rocks. About 220 million years in the past, during the late Triassic period, the whole region came under stress due to stretching of the crust caused by the opening up of the Atlantic Ocean between Europe and America. This was a time of intense geological activity, block-faulting and mountain-building. It was during this period that the creation of the Fundy basin, which became filled with sandstone, shale, conglomerates, siltstone and other rocks deposited as sediments, occurred. The pulling and pushing of earth forces (spirits if you prefer) against the crust eventually shattered it along fault lines allowing the extrusion of basaltic lavas and the development of colonies of volcanoes. This basaltic lava covered all the previous rocks under the bay and sheathed the entire bottom, falling just short of encompassing what is now the New Brunswick coast. North Mountain, Nova Scotia is an outcrop of this basalt, as is the rock that may be seen on the western coast of Grand Manan. Since that time silts, shales and limestones, have been laid down on the undersea portion of this basalt sheet. A geologist-friend (Don Hattie) has noticed that the Maritime fay-lands correlate with geological and tectonic boundaries, clustering along major faults, appearing where there are unconformities. There are several systems of cracks in the earth's crust in our provinces, most running roughly southeast to northwest. The most northerly of these slices across the New Brunswick Highlands, a natural place to look for the land-sidhe. The Cabot Fault system includes a branch that runs almost due north into the Saint Croix River penetrating the country once claimed by the land-giants known as the canoose. The westward tending part of this structure starts somewhere south of Grand Manan Island and underlies all of the Bay of Fundy, poking out on the land near Saint Martins, and hitting Nova Scotia at Cap D'Or. From there the fault traverses that province in a southeasterly direction, passing near the Dagger Woods and bisecting Cape Breton Island, finally passing out to sea off the Fairy Hole. There are minor faults underlying the tributaries to the Saint John River and within the Saint Croix and Caledonian Highlands of New Brunswick. The Cobequid Mountains and the Cape Breton Highlands are similarly affected and the Nova Scotia Uplands are crossed by the Glooscap Fault System. It is impossible to explain why this is the case, but breaks in the fabric of time, and concentrations of "earth-spirits", appear to occur where rocks of different ages are now side-byside as the result of a distant calamity. Sideways movement along the Cabot system has had this effect, while sedimentation and layering, followed by volcanic flow and tilting, has created inconformities, or places where structurally different rocks are now found abutting one another. Without leaning too heavily on the earth sciences it may be noted that Cookson Island, sometimes familiarly called Spoon Island, lies directly over a fault that penetrates it and passes through all of Oak Bay. This area has been identified as a somewhat strange place. Again, Ile Haut is the stack from a flow of magma that penetrated a crack in the Bay of Fundy; it has a definite reputation as a "floating-island". Grand Manan Island is split by a fault into eastern and western halves composed of entirely different matter; the east consisting of soft rocks and the

west of basalt. It is a place overburdened with rowing-men, guardians, mer-people and seaserpents. This basalt lies like a giant macadamized surface over the floor of much of the Bay of Fundy and touches the shore near Saint Martins where numerous phantom ships and phantom men have been seen. The whole of Nova Scotia's North Mountain, on the southern face of the Bay of Fundy shows another unconformity of this sort and a great deal of spirit activity. Although lately the Fundy region has been considered to be "tectonically stable", which means there have been few recorded earthquakes, this does not count for much since we have only kept seismographic records since the mid-point of the current century. In earlier times it was said that the "little people" of America had the ability to penetrate and move through stone as if it were no more than fog. This magic was shared with the horned-serpent people who could swim through the rocks, although they normally frequented the ocean. Their passage had more effect om the sur-face though, as their passage rutted the earth, producing faulting and earthquakes. Glooscap's constant companion was a sea-giant of this clan, thus Glooscap always made his appearances among men, and departed from them, with pyrotechnics and a violent earthquake. This may be an indication that earthquakes were a more common occurrence in his time. Earthquakes which did damage in the new white communities were reported from Plymouth in 1638, Newburyport in 1727, and Scituate in 1755. Shocks in our more immediate area and time have centred around the Passamaquoddy region and have parallelled the faults in the rocks on the New Brunswick side of the Bay. Other minor shakings have occurred in the Cobequid Mountains of Nova Scotia, in the Cape Breton Highlands, and off the southwest shore of Newfoundland. Some marine geologists say that the action is along a series of faults which together comprise what they call the Cabot Fault System. According to them the systems begins under the Gulf of Maine and tracks from there through the Cobequids and Cape Breton as far seaward as Newfoundland. There have been many earthquakes in the Fundy region in this century, one worthy of record occurring March 2, 1925. "The Telegraph Journal", publishing out of Saint John, New Brunswick said that: Distinct shocks were experienced throughout New Brunswick. Those who were in Saint John city streets at the time looked in amazement to see tall buildings quivering. The tall Atlantic Sugar buildings trembled but the earthquake was felt most severely at Moncton, and were said to be the most violent earthquake in memory of Moncton's oldest residents. At Fredericton stores were about finishing business and the picture theatres filled when solidly built buildings began to creak and there was a general rush for the streets.... Lang Ferguson and Leslie Fyffe, the editors of a Geological Highway Map of the three Maritime Provinces have noted that most earthquakes in this century have taken place along previous breaks in the crust rather than at new faults. They think these are a delayed reactions to the unloading of glacial ice starting about 13,000 years ago. Nevertheless, there has been at least one troublesome anomaly, the Miramichi earthquake of 1982 which registered a main shock of 5.7 on the Richter scale at 8:53 a.m. on January 9th, with an aftershock of 5.4 on January 11. The epicentre was in a remote area on an upper branch of the Southwest Miramichi River so

no damage was done, but if the quake had taken place in a populated region the reports might have been far different. [I might add that Donald and I were both home at the time and it was a frightening experience. In part, I think that the reason it was so frightening was that it was a gorgeous sunny morning. You get used to watching the weather for signs that it will turn nasty, but there was no indication of anything about to go amiss. I was still in bed when the whole house suddenly began to quake as though a monstrous train were passing by. Oddly enough, my first thought was "Earthquake." All the books in the shelf in my room shifted forward by about an inch, the pictures on the walls began to sway. When I went downstairs to talk to Mum & Dad the iron trivet behind the fireplace was still swinging energetically. The quake also caused a large crack to form in the foundation of the house out by the front corner, under the bay window.] It might be well to recall, from time-to-time, that Glooscap has promised to retake the land from the whites and will announce his coming with a major earthquake. There is certainly potential for this in the north or at the old faults under the Bay of Fundy. The local Indians, as mentioned before, believed that things which we consider mere dead objects were in fact the living tombs of spirits. This was thought to be the condition of the thousands of islands found in the waters surrounding the Maritime Provinces. The eastern side of nearby Deer Island has many islets, but those of the western coast are sheer glamour. They are usually seen peeking through fog, when they seem luxuriant, sparkling with crystals and bright metals from the sea-cliffs, filled with the odours of flowers and berries and full of songbirds. Those who have tried to approach are always frustrated, since these fairy-islands were the domain of a jealous mantou, who would promptly blanket the island in a solid fog before any man could set foot on the shores. The spirits of some of the islands seem to have shown a marked inclination to fight the powers that bound them. Thus, Ile Haute, near Advocate Haute, had the general reputation of being a floating island. Ile Haute is located close to the division of the Bay of Fundy into Chignecto Bay and Minas Basin; a place of extreme water turbulence and fog, a situation which has probably enhanced its reputation. Ile Haut may be found at the eastern extreme of the Bay of Fundy, a little south-west of Advocate Harbour, Nova Scotia. Although it now seems firmly anchored at sixty-five degrees longitude and fifteen degrees latitude, Victorian mariners, including some of my own family, were certain that it was a "floating-island". Like the Celtic island of Hi-Breas-il, Ile Haute tended to wander, and it was rumoured that it became detached at mid-winter once every seven years. Isle Haute, or high island, does not sport towers of gold such as were seen by the Partholons (ancestors of the Macfarlands) when they unsuccessfully attacked Hi-Breas-il, but it does have a lode of "sidhe-gold". Pirates may have buried their wealth on Maritime strands but the protection of it was the business of ghosts, spirits, or fairies, and in legend these are indistinguishable creatures, since all are projections of mankind. In the case of pirate or fairy-gold, certain conventions are always followed. On Ile Haut it has been claimed that seekers will only be successful at a particular phase of the moon. There, as elsewhere, the treasure has to be sought at night and all participants must remain silent during the digging. Guardians of treasure were thought powerless unless unbound by the sound of human speech, after which they were capable of frightful retribution. In this connection it must

be understood that gold (and other valuables) lost at sea, or near the intertidal zone, was considered the ultimate property of the elder god of the sea, thus the interest of his water-spirits. According to some Glooscap lived in those days at what is now Liverpool, Nova Scotia; others were sure that his base was on an island near Saint John, New Brunswick. Most agreed that he was born a member of the Black Cat tribe on his mother's side and one of the Bear people by his father. The Micmacs say that Ile Haute is the island where Glooscap was intentionally stranded by a witch-woman (she ultimately became the sea-beast known as the Witch of the Atlantic). The Passamquoddys, on the other hand, say that this episode involved Grand Manan Island at the opposite, or western, end of the bay. Certainly, Grand Manan was (and is) suitably sheathed in "magic mist" through much of the summer sailing season, to the extent that the entire Bay of Fundy was missed by the men who drew the first charts of the northeast coast of the United States and Canada. While the waters south of Cape Cod are largely influenced by the warm Gulf Stream, the Bay receives only twenty percent of its tidal waters from this source, getting the rest from the frigid Labrador Current. This means that the waters of the Bay are close to the freezing point at mid-summer. Since the air temperature is much warmer, the dew point of water is easily reached and fog generated on an almost constant basis. In the Passamaquoddy version of the tale, Glooscap was chased there by a witch-woman who lusted after him. The story goes that as a youth Glooscap caught the eye of a mature witchwoman named Pook-jin-skwess, one of the Cat people. All of the Cat people could take the form of their totem animals but this "lady" could take many forms "for she could be man or woman, or many (of either sex) when she willed it. Glooscap had not yet attained the powers of magic he possessed as an adult so he was forced to flee her unrequited love. To make the best possible time the two runners, Glooscap and the witch, enlarged themselves into cloud-scraping giants. The flight of their spirits has been compared to "the awful storms of winter, the frightful tempests of summer; the sky filled with wind chasing cloud, filled with lightning pursuing thunder." When they came to the shore Glooscap made a titanic effort and jumped from Maine to Grand Manan, a leap of about nine miles, leaving the prints of his "bear-paw" snowshoes on both sides of the Grand Manan Channel. Others explained his coming to the island without resorting to a supernatural happening, claiming that the witch woman tired of Glooscap's avoidance and finally sought revenge. Taking the form of a man she invited the young chief to go collecting bird's eggs on this offshore island. Having stranded him there Pook-jin-skwess paddled away singing, "I have left the Black cat on the island; Now surely I shall be chief of the People." Fortunately Glooscap was able to telepathically warm his immediate family (Grandmother and a mikumwees named Marten) of her intentions so that the entire tribe was able to flee into the woods. The length of Glooscap's isolated stay on Grand Manan is given as somewhere between thirteen days and seven months. His introspection ended when he remembered a fox ally who had telepathy and magical powers. "And he sang a song and Fox heard it although he was many miles away...". The fox came to him on the island and offered him his tail in order that both might attain the mainland. What magic Glooscap possessed was severely drained for he found the return trip troublesome and long and thought "We shall never get to land." But the Foxman responded, "Do not believe it, the winds are high and the waters wild at the command of

the witch-woman, but she will not overcome us." In one day and one night they reached land where Glooscap was ritually reborn as a magician. The island of Grand Manan seems, also, to have provoked similar ideas among the early white settlers. There has been a long-running scholastic battle over the origin of the word Manan, W.F. Ganong equating it with the Latin, "magnus", meaning "great." His opponents have no liking for that explanation, noting that combining this word with "grand" creates a redundancy. Some say the name is Indian in origin, but have been unable to come up with the exact word in any of the native dialects or with a translation into English. In any case, the island first appears on the sea-charts of Samuel de Champlain shortly after 1604, where it is given as "Menthane" or "Menane", and it seems clear to us that this corresponds with the French "menth" cloaked, which is to say surrounded in fog, an entirely appropriate designation. The name of Grand Manan may have some connection to a similar Celtic word, in particular the Gaelic "manach". This Gaelic word also means one who seeks solitude, a cloaked individual, or monk. Since the cowl hides the identity of the wearer, the word may be used as a verb to mean cloaked or hidden from view, thus, a foggy island. It should be noted that monks went to lonely islands to "commune with God," which is the polite way of saying they hoped to obtain additional god-spirit and, thus, secular power over their dangerous world. In doing this, they followed the example of Jesus Christ who spent time in a desert-wilderness. The druid priests and the Norse scalds, who came before them, had similar examples of men who had attained full god-hood through isolation and contemplation. The most notable of these was King Odin, a capable magician, but not a fully realized talent until he turned to what we would now call "a wilderness experience." During this experience, Odin hung himself for nine days and nights from the Norse world-tree, "self-wounding himself with his own spear, ere he won the knowledge he sought." When he emerged from his experience he possessed a new "magic." He was able to "place" the spoken word upon wood and other materials, recalling its sounds at will. It was said that these "runes" gave him "power over all things." It also should be noted that these islands were anciently considered to be the god in incarnate, if inactive, form. We would suggest that Grand Manan is very appropriate to be the western land base of Manan mac Ler. Manan mac Ler was one of the chief sea-giants of Scandinavia and Britain and son of the sea god Ler. The casting of future and past events was traditionally the role of these sea-giants. Manan mac Ler's eastern land outpost was the Isle of Man in the Irish Sea. (It may be recalled that this Celtic god\sea-giant, Manan mac Ler, was the soul-gatherer of the dead, the god who transported men to An Domhain; the Deep beneath Tir nan Og, an island which stood in the western sea.) The name is also written Manann and Manaun. The French explorers were not the last people to note this grand island and its magic: The Edwardian geologist Lorne W. Bailey noted that the place was split from north to south by a fault that extended beyond into the sea in both directions. On either side he found rocks of dissimilar make-up including the only trap (a black volcanic rock) found in this part of the Bay. He noted that it was ranged in "wild and picturesque crags which rim its northern and western sides for many miles." He was particularly struck with the western face which he said "presents a bold front of overhanging cliffs and lofty mural precipices of majestic grandeur and beauty." Naturally the magical nature of these islands attracts many mem-bers of the fey-folk. Deer Island has its own share of these. One of these seems to be an Anglo-Saxon sprig, a youthful

spirit. The sprigs were guardians of the standing-stones in Britain and may have been the actual spirits of the stones. They could con-trol the wind and were able to appear as giant humans in order to scare men away from territory they inhabited. In keeping with their reputation as the guardians of stones, they are believed to know the whereabouts of all buried treasures. They were often held responsible for the circles seen in grain fields and the wind storms that took down crops. These stone-men are described as having bright "coal-burning" eyes and a deeply tanned skin, and were traditionally employed as blacksmiths. Though not always opposed to mankind they are never overly friendly. For a token payment left on a gravestone, they would shoe oxen and horses or sharpen the knifes, kitchen utensils and tools that were left there. In doing this they acted exactly like Voolund or Wayland, the master of Odin's forge. Wayland was once held hostage to Nidud, King of Sweden, but escaped from him and retired to Alfheim where he fashioned many miraculous swords including one for Charlemagne. Spriggans were capable of carrying huge stones and some claim they were the race that set up the cromlechs of Britain. While the spriggans struggled to protect the sanctity of stones set up to honour human or the heroes of other races, they would not tol-erate memorials to those who died by suicide. Which brings us to John Hooper. John Hooper drowned himself at Deer Island, New Brunswick, on May fifth, 1850. His body was found beneath the waters of a pond in back of his home, thoughtfully attached to a string tied to a very stale loaf of bread. Hooper had said that he wanted no remembrance but loving relatives erected a tombstone over his grave in the pasture behind his outbuildings. A few days after, the stone was found lying face-down in the grass. It was assumed the foundation had been poorly set so workmen came and cemented the stone back into an upright position. Twice more the stone was found down. After the third attempt to stabilize the stone, it was found split horizontally, the top half lying on the ground. In the following century, Stirling Lambert, a resident at Lambertville hearing the story went looking for Hooper's grave. He found the stone split into three sections in a field that had become a forest. He propped up the large top section, but returning a few years later, found it back on its face. Subsequently, the trees were cut and a new community dump was established in what had been Hooper's back yard. After that residents made almost daily attempts to oppose the wished of the spriggy. This battle of wills went on for several weeks until the stone was finally found smashed into thousands of fragments. While some folks attributed this final damage to vandalism, few people are willing to visit the Deer Island dump after dark. In the coastal areas near the Saint Croix Highlands can be found the rowing men. These are, perhaps, the descendants of the promontory kings who are known in Danish tradition as the "klintekonger". They kept ward and watch over their country, driving the sea in a chariot hauled by four black stallions whenever war or calamity threatened. At such times the sea and the sky blackened and the horses could be heard snorting and neighing from the midst of churning waters. When the sea-peoples were defeated by men and the "gods" they gained the advantages of virtual immortality and invisibility but surrendered freedom of movement. Thus: It is a prevalent opinion in the north that all the various beings of the popular creed were once worsted in a conflict with superior powers, and condemned to

remain till doomsday in certain assigned abodes. The dwarfs or hill trolls, were appointed the hills; the elves the groves and leafy trees; the hill-people the caves and caverns; the mermen, mermaids and necks, the seas lakes and rivers; the river-men, the small waterfalls.... The rowing men were deeded some small part of the coastline or beach, either on or near the sea. This is an elf who is usually invisible, but makes his presence known by following a human and duplicating his actions. He is not the Shadow Man or Fylgie, who is born to each individual and dogs his steps, but an independent elf. This creature is rarely mentioned in British folklore, but may correspond with the sand-hill elves of Danish legend, and the brown and white elves of Pomerania and Ruugen. The rowing man superficially resembles the dwarf of the island of Rugen, in the Baltic Sea. "These dwell chiefly on the coast-hills, along the shores between Ahlbeck and Monchgut, where they hold their assemblies, and plunder the ships that are wrecked on the coast." One of the best tricks of the Rugen was the placement of a fishing dory in a high beech-tree. When fishermen returned the next day, one asked, "Who the devil put the boat in the tree?" and a voice responded, "No devil, my son, but myself the Rugen Nickel." In Atlantic Canada these shape-changers have little chance to be virulent since ships are no longer led to the shore by beach fires and they are magically bound to specific regions of the coast. They are usually, aside from practical jokes, a harmless sub-species unless they materialize and approach an individual, an omen of death! In another incident at Whale Cove, Grand Manan, N.B., reported in Stuart Trueman's, Ghosts, Pirates and Treasure Trove, 1975 (pp 95-96) a herring fisherman named Lyman Lorimer was pursued by an invisible little man. One moonlight night he was walking toward his Whale Cove weir with the intention of seeing if there was herring to be seined. Passing his uncle Leaman Wilcox's home he became aware that he was not alone. Stopping on the path, he heard following footsteps fade away. Moving again, the footsteps began once more. When he paused and snapped a twig an invisible being had broken off a mate several feet distant. When he arrived at the beach and sat on the shingle, stones rolled noisily away and a little apart from his position he saw other stones disturbed by some invisible presence. When Lyman skipped a stone on the surface of the water an invisible little man lobbed his own flat rock across the waves. Walking home Lorimer paused at the home of Leaman Wilcox and noted the unwanted company. When Lorimer expressed the belief that he had acquired a permanent companion "No," Wilcox assured him, "I know this fellow. This is his territory; he'll stay here!" "Whereupon there was a great angry shaking of a clump of little fir trees..." but Lorimer was able to pass on without further aggravation. As a rule, the rowing men were subtle jokesters, who created the sounds of moving row-boats from the midst of fog. As they apparently pulled their pinkies, or dinghies, ashore men rushed to meet expected friends but found nothing. (Again from Stuart Trueman, pp. 99 & 100) At Little Dark Harbour, Grand Manan, N.B., Floyd Brown and two co-workers heard a Rowing Man while camped for lobster hauling. It was the winter season and Floyd's father had gone to North Head for supplies. On the following night thinking they heard his dory moving in on the ebb tide, the three men went to the shore intending to pull up the dory with rope and windlass. "But nobody showed up...my father didn't come till the next day," Brown noted that this

happened four times in that season and noted, "It happens every year, somewhere between November nineteenth and twenty-fifth, on a calm still, moonlit evening..." (Stuart Trueman, p. 100) On Campobello Island, N.B. Mrs. Mary Gallagher told the following tale: They used to tell of a ghostly dory coming in through the darkness and the fog. Kids would gather on the shore in the hope of hearing it, The legend is that you could hear the oarlocks and voices, and even the crunch of the bow running up on the gravel, but no one was there. The rowing-men are not necessarily confined to boats and the shore. The worst of this kind were exhibitionists who materialized in the nude and sunbathed at roadside locations in order to shock passing ladies: An elf who sunbathed at roadside..." a creature two and a half feet tall, with a huge head and shoulders" was reported at Tetagouche Falls, N.B. (Stuart Trueman, p. 154). It was not wise to insult the rowing-man. During the 1940's, my family summered on Grand Manan Island with my grandparents at Grand Harbour. My cousins were full of tales of the rowing man and explained that he sometimes materialized and liked to join them in their play. Once, tired of his ponderous ways and odd out-moded talk, they heaved him into the salt water. He immediately vanished like a extinguished light bulb, and began to pellet them with beach pebbles. The children took shelter beneath an overturned dory, and cowered for a half hour beneath a rain of stones. When they emerged there was no sign of the little old man of the sea and no pile of rocks to evidence his supposed barrage. Although they are not usually recorded as assaulting anyone, an exception is the "Little Old Man of the Sea" of Tetagouche Falls, New Brunswick, who for some unknown reason was assigned to an abandoned manganese mine. Some found him friendly, others thought he was a malevolent ghost who haunted the shafts of the nearby mine. He often spoke with people explaining that he was an "earthbound old man of the sea". Only two and a half feet tall with a disproportionate head and mass, this creature once jumped on the back of a passing hitchhiker who offended him and road him piggy-back. The hiker noted that his weight was enormous. His favourite diversion was to run in the woods parallel to passing teams of horses and suddenly leap out frightening both men and beasts, panicking the latter into a gallop. One night he is said to have accidentally tumbled between the traces and been trampled, after which, his spirit disappeared from those parts. A similar rowing man with a predilection for chasing cars was reported a Ghost Hollow (between Seal Cove and Whale Cove), Grand Manan, N.B. (Stuart Trueman, ibid. pp 95 & 96). A little man was often seen on foggy nights in the early days of automobile transport. He ran beside cars, sometimes throwing himself beneath them. The underworld of all the Atlantic countries was thought to be held by a guardian-spirit (variously named Papkutparut, Hel, Dis, or Manan MacLer), and it was believed to house waters that ultimately flowed into the ocean. This place was under the protection of the little people (variously named the sidhe, mikumwees, elfs or fairies). The underworld was thought to contain

all manner of evil-doers, human and otherwise. Speaking of this place, Glooscap told his people that they must: ...act always as you should. Those who do not, will be made to remember that there is a place of darkness. Those of you who fail to support the right will find yourselves hunting in the void. There will be no sun for such as you! This was the earth-womb, a source of magic as well as a promise of death. Glooscap went deliberately to the underworld to gain power over the spirit of the death. His entry into the caverns of the earth was counted as his death; his emergence at the other end of the dead-river into the sunlight of day was seen as rebirth. After this journey, Glooscap had the power to raise individuals from the dead. Ancient souterrains, weems, barrows and natural caverns were, of course, traditional homes to the old-world fay. In Britain, souterrains, or artificially built caves, were the most common shelters. In all of these places it was agreed that the fay-folk shared living quarters with the giants. Evil kings and magic-makers sometimes visited the hollow hills and they were thought to go there after death. Virtuous kings and warriors found more comfortable accommodations after death, but "the straw-dead", those who died with their boots on, murderers, or boundarystone movers were thought consigned to the side-hills until the end of the world. Of the ancient souterrains, archaeologist Sean P. O'Riordain said they should not be confused with natural limestone caves which were also "used as habitations." O'Riordain says there are usually no surface indications of the existence of souterrains, most of which have come to notice through accidental discovery. Although many souterrains are known to legend, O'Riordain thinks that few have been unearthed. It was once guessed that these underground places were used for the storage of grains or burial of the dead but it was not understood that they served as homes to the "little people". It was only later noticed that the souterrains were fitted with ventilation shafts, trenches to drain off water seeping down from the surface, and even chimneys and hearth sites. Some of the passageways contained defensive narrowings or incorporated mazes with blind passages, and were "of great complexity". Most had at least two entryways with shafts and chimneys placed at some distance from the location of the souterrain. All this led to the conclusion that they were arranged to house men, guard against enemies and delay discovery through unearthing the ventilation and smoke pipes. Artifacts found in these underground dwellings have dated them through the bronze age to the early centuries of Christianity, but Riordain has said, "most belong to the Late Bronze Age." Riordain is also sure that "whole fields (in County Antrim, Ireland) are entirely honeycombed with a mass of these souterrains forming a kind of underground village." He comments that their size can be gauged by the fact that two hundred and eighty three hostages were held, and killed, in three of these caves in 1641. In Scotland these "hollow-hills" of the daoine sidhe were known as "uamhean" or earth houses. A Shetland weem has been found to date to the early iron age, but many have been noted to contain shoring blocks taken from Roman buildings. In Cornwall, the tylwyth teg lived in "fougous" some of which are iron age. In Iceland, rock cut tunnels in sedimentary strata take the place of those tunnelled in clay or built from pilings of stone covered with earth. French souterrain-refuges are similar and at least one example of the same type is seen in Jutland.

Otherwise, they are not found on the continent of Europe. This is also true of eastern North America, the land to which the fey-races are supposed to have emigrated. They built no souterrains in the New World but found refuge in some of the hundred or more natural caves and trous in the region. The names given some our caves are evocative: In Quebec we note: "Le Trou du Diable" (Devil's cave) 64 miles west of Quebec City; "Le Trou de fee de Desbiens" (the Cave of Desbien's fairies), now a commercial tourist attraction south of Lake Saint John; and "Le Speos" (the Underground Temple), at the foot of the Notre Dame Mountains. None of the New Brunswick caverns are as nicely named but in Nova Scotia we do have the Fairy Hole, the Maiden's Cave and the Ovens, all of which have legendary or mythic attachments. There are indications of human habitation in a few of these caves, and others certainly remain to be unearthed or rediscovered. Some of Michael Beaupre's friends thought that the sinking streams and sinkholes of the central Gaspe region suggested the presence of an extensive underground, and then they discovered "an important cave" on the plateau near St Elzear. Entered through a l0-meter shaft, this place led into a chamber having a width of more than thirty meters and a length of at least 244 meters. They suspected that it connected with caverns as deep as 180 meters but were unable to check this as the entrance was sealed to prevent people from injuring themselves. A Cave at North East Margaree, in Cape Breton, became apparent in the early 1960's when the entrance subsided with the loss of two horses and their driver. Again, in 1965, cave-explorers rediscovered a portion of Miller's Cave, near Windsor Nova Scotia, by "squeezing through a very narrow crack on pure speculation". The cavern that lay hidden beyond this "maze of passages" proved to be Miller's Creek Cave, formerly thought to be a separate entity. One of the most common earth spirits is the Knocker. Sometimes called the tommy-knocker in England, the prefixed word coming from the Scottish toom (similar to tomb), a hollow place. The second coming from the Gaelic cnoc, hill, such as that favoured by the sidhe. Hence the knockers that dwell in mines and caverns. The tommy knockers reside in mines, where they work incessantly at moving ore, although they never accomplish any actual work. By association, a tommy came to be recognized as any individual who offered his labour in exchange for little more than food or clothing. In Gaelic lands, he was called the bodach na' cnoc, or bodach of the hollow-hills. These may be the out-of-work guardians, runners, or cowalkers of men who have died in mine disasters. The tommy knocker has cousins: the housebound English knocky boh and the German knicker knocker. The individual knock of the tommy knocker leads the miner toward rich ore bodies but three knocks presage an accident underground. Cornish miners described the knockers as dressed in leather miner's clothing. Miners were careful not to sing or whistle while underground as this annoyed the wee folk. They also avoided making a sign of the cross as the knocker tribe was averse to Christianity and, resenting its symbols, might cause an underground "bump". These spirits are mentioned briefly in Bluenose Magic:, A miner at Springhill told Helen Creighton, "I've heard of Tommy Knockers having been heard before an accident. Men have often seen lights before an accident and they would quit and come up." Again at Stellarton, Nova Scotia, a resident suggested, "If miners heard a certain tapping in the mine they would

close it down and stop work for the day." A third respondent from Port Mounton said that the "knockers" were known in Queens County mines. Completely typical is a tale that came from the Mount Pleasant tin mine in Charlotte County, a hard rock mine that is now closed. Igneous rock mines are generally less susceptible to cave-in than coal mines, but this one was penetrated by vertical cracks filled with white clay and fluorine crystals. This mine was generally a safe place requiring little in the way of overhead supports, but the places where there were seams contained a white clay called kaolin and this sometimes served as a plug for underground waters. When these plugs occasionally let go there was danger of a miner being buried and/or drowned. In this particular case two miners working at the rock face heard three determined tapping noises, but not being superstitious ignored it. This was followed by a fusillade of stone chips from an invisible rock-thrower. Thinking it was one of their mates the two of them charged back up the passageway after the practical joker, but could find no one. As they stood in the tunnel one hundred yards from the front they heard the whoosh of an underground lake emptying into the mine. Older men suggested they had been rescued by a tommy knocker, and afterwards they two miners were careful to leave small food offerings for him. On land, as on sea, the topographic heights and depths; the mountain-tops and the deepest valleys were considered by the Celts the most magical and uncanny places. The highlands are mostly hard-rock regions which are not exposed to very rapid wear and tear. This is not true of the soft-rock lowlands and some of these show the "Karst topography", which the ancients considered evidence of spirits in hiding or captivity. This surface formation is named after the first descriptions from Karst, Germany, and is particularly seen in New Brunswick, south of Hopewell Cape. Here, the underlying rocks are limestone and gypsum which are very susceptible to weathering and erosion due to solution by circulating groundwater. The result is the formation of underground caverns as well as funnel-shaped depressions at the surface, frequently seen filled with water. The roof of those caverns which resist collapse are usually formed of rock which has sufficient hardness to reman after the interior has been undermined. However, even these collapse, from time-to-time, leaving circular holes which are referred to as sinks, or sink-holes, or craters. These eventually become filled with water and organic debris or serve as collectors for water forming deep and dangerous ponds with sides which may prove hard to scale, and which may house bog-dwelling water-spirits. The flat-lands were thought devoid of much action or danger, except where they happened to be underlain by "black water" or the caverns of the gods, giants and little people. Lands below sea-level, which formed the fens or the basins for "magic lakes" were once avoided as gateways to the undersea kingdom. In North America such lakes were also recognized and could be identified by the fact that those who plumbed them found them to be "bottomless". Thus, men of earlier times assumed that these bodies had connections through caves that ended in the sea. Glooscap was said to have followed one of these "gates" when he paddled his canoe into the underworld seeking the power to restore the dead. Often, on such waters, men became lost in fog, then they were beset by "the shadow of strangeness coming at them across the water." The long and spirited life of sea and fresh-water "demons" was often credited to their consumption of spirits of the dead at sea. The old Norse tales claim that the gods of the land defeated the frost giants but never conquered the sea spirits. This legend stems from when Odin's Aesir invaded Germany and Scandinavia, there encountering the sea-people, known as

the Vanir. A long and unsatisfactory battle was fought against them using mountaintops and glacial ice as missiles, but since neither could get the upper hand, contrived a peace and an exchange of hostages. Odin's brother, Hoenir, was thus committed to living beneath the sea, while King Niord, of the Vanir, came to land to guarantee the good intentions of the sea-folk. In the latter-days, Niord and his son were adopted as full-fledged land-gods and succeeded to Odin's throne on his death. This explains how the land gods at became related to the sea-deities in the Norse sagas, The Eddas. The river-people of our land are clearly symbols of this moody and alluring element; one day calm and peaceful, the next as ravaging as any monster. Metals, in particular steel and iron, were considered the surest means of binding these water-spirits. Anyone going on the open sea was always certain to jam a knife into the keel-board of the craft. Iron was associated with the ultimate conquerors of Europe, whose sharp-edged weapons proved superior to the flashier bronze and brass implements. It was said that the presence of an iron piece spread a magical net beneath the ship making it invisible to mermen and other water spirits. Methods to control them were known to my Guptill ancestors, who would refrain from whistling up a wind and were known to jam an iron knife into the mast of their fishing boats "to bind the neck" if it was kicking up waves. It was never thought bad policy to hammer an extra nail into the keel, but my grandfather would have cautioned against driving one into the mast or throwing money into the sea. He may not have remembered why but I now know that it was because the mermen were able to see iron through water and air and these magical creatures hated the sym-bol of their past losses. Swimming in the rivers was considered a dangerous pastime because of the river-people's unpredictable temperament. In elder days both the Danish and the Swedish peoples agreed that the Niccor or Neck, who the English sometimes called Old Nick, was a monster with a human head, who could live in either fresh or salt water. It was said that these river folk could walk upon water or stand at any level within it. Quite frequently their lower half took the form of a horse, the human part being that above water. Thomas Keightley seemed to agree saying that the Neck is sometimes seen as "a pretty little boy with golden hair and a red cap on his head" sitting on the water's surface, "as a old man with a long beard out of which he perpetually wrings water", or "as a handsome young man above water, but beneath like a horse". The Neck were definitely dangerous at times: when a person was drowned it was said, "Nookken tog ham bort." (the Nookke has taken him away); and when the drowned person was invariably found sporting a red nose, it was added, "Nikken har suet ham." (Nikke has sucked his nose.) Although this nature-spirit was reputed "severe only against those who deserve it" yet all watertravellers took protection against him. Those who wanted safety while swimming were advised to recite carefully this spell: "Neck, neck, needle. Thief: be you in water when I stand on land. Neck, neck, needle. Thief: stand you on land while I be in water." Here is another example of sympathetic word-magic, the name "needle" representing iron as surely as if it were present. In my day, boy's bathing suits were made with tiny pockets inside just within the draw-string and these often carried a silver dime or a copper penny. Gold would have been a better protection as the water-people were not thieves of metals, and would trade it to release a captive human spirit. Other of the river folk were capable of assuming a complete horse form. Their regional presence is suggested in Kelpy Cove, situated in Cape Breton. Kelpys could shape-change into

entire horses and were sometimes seen galloping through the mists on our rivers. Keightley mentions that the Kelpy's horse form was so complete that they "... can be made to work at the plough if a bridle of a particular description be employed." These bridles must have been in short supply, for the wild Neck or Kelpie usually appeared a compliant beast to those who found him on some inland dune, but once mounted dashed off a dizzying journey. A journey which, at best, ended with the rider being dumped into a local stream. If the creature happened to come within sight of the sea, he immediately carried his human foe into the breakers, drowning him in the kelp "forests", after which he consumed the body, leaving only the liver uneaten. It is not surprising that when the kelpies came ashore they were sometimes misidentified. On the Maguaguadavic River some of my ancestors captured a young horse running free on the road between Second Falls and McDougall Lake. They corralled him, harnessed him to a harrow and worked the lower fields with his help. When they stopped for lunch, they left the "horse" tied to a tree, but the kelpys have unbinding magic and this one freed himself and made a determined bolt for the river. The men followed him, but the fay are strong and quick, and the animal vanished into the water taking their second-best harrow with him. My grandfather did not speak of land-lubbers like the sidhe, elf and fairies but he knew about the nixies (at the time, I thought he meant pixies). New Brunswick and Nova Scotia are lands of rivers and abundant rainfall so it is not surprising that the inhabitants have had some contact with the nixes. In the outback, those who wished to learn the devil's art with the fiddle knew that a black lamb or a white kid had to be sacrificed at the river bank at dusk on a Thursday evening. The nixes could usually be located near any waterfall and if the animal offering was seen to be in poor health, or not submitted with respect, the music lessons did proceed beyond a few tips for tuning the instrument. If the water-fairy was well pleased, the pupil might be forced to practice until his finger tips bled. It was generally understood that the water-people could teach ten tunes suitable for human dancing, while the eleventh was the exclusive property of some ruling god-spirit whose name was never spoken. If any had the audacity to steal the measures of "The Elf King's Tune" then it was claimed that tables, benches, cups, plates, cutlery, the blind, the lame, children in the cradle, and even old men and women would be forced to dance to its magic. There are some peculiar lowlands to be found in the Maritimes; when I was a youngster, my extended family shared a hunting camp at Macdougall Lake with the Buchanans and several other St. Stephen families. Once each fall, children were incorporated into a deer and moosehunting party, which squeezed itself into an inadequate four room shack for a couple of weeks spent "on the land". This very elementary building stood, ominously, in the morning shadow of Devil's Razor, a sharp pointed ridge of land due east of route 778. "The Devil's Razorback", a very curious wooded mountain, ran nearly vertical just east of the camp; it had a narrow footwide path at the summit, and sloped off at about forty-five degrees on the other side. Our entourage often fished along Seventeen Mile Brook, and somewhere to the southwest was the Devil's Teapot, which some called the Devil's Cauldron, the Devil's Kettle, or the Devil's Teacup. I was only there once, and remember it as a crater-like landform punched out of swamp land. On the outside there were alders and malnourished trees, but once these were penetrated, the vegetation was sparse and the forty-five degree outer slope easy to climb. I have no idea of the

height but gaining the top was a matter of a five to ten minute walk. There was a five to ten foot walking space around the lip of the crater and then the land dipped down ward at about the same angle creating a very symmetrical bowl. The sides were alive with grass and small plants but the very bottom of the cauldron was dry and dead looking and scattered with small stones, an extremely disturbing place. At the time, the adults said that the dead bottom was perhaps due to army vehicles using the place for manoeuvres, but they admitted that there had never been growth here even before the outbreak of World War II. My grandfather pointed to the fact of the dryness of the soil in spite of recent rains and noted that water could be heard running beneath the ground. It was once said that underground streams were controlled either by spirits of darkness and malignancy or by those who controlled forces which were not antagonistic to men. My guess would be that the Devil's Razor was a block fault mountain. In any case, the soil at the base of this mountain was swampy due to the presence of an artesian well, which bubbled up immediately in front of the vertical face of this hundred foot land-form. My grandfather was uncertain about who had installed the circular rocks to form a well, but the camp had been erected here because water was readily available. Naturally, there was a lot of wet land and mosquitoes, but the place is most memorable to me for the presence of the "bull-rush man". My grandfather was addicted to the telling of stories, some of which were aimed at keeping the children indoors after dark: His single encounter with this water-spirit came on one of the occasions when children were not present. It was late in the season, which is why he was left alone to stoke the wood-fire, while the rest of his cronies drove to Saint George for supplies. At that time the roads were almost non-existent and the automobile had to be parked two miles to the west and everything backpacked to the site. The out-house was on one branch of a Y-shaped path and the round well on the other. Either destination had to be approached over planks laid between rocks, thus bridging stagnant water and sphagnum moss. On his last trip before midnight, Wes Mackay thought he saw a glimmer of light from the face of the well, but dismissed it as "foxfire" the cold light produced by decaying organic material. The slight extra light was helpful as the night was particularly dark in this elbow of the mountain. Back at the camp, contrary to his usual practice, he bolted the door. He was soon glad of this precaution as he heard an animal crushing down the underbrush and knew that it might be a bear. Since he was not expecting the "boys" until after midnight he settled on a cot and fell asleep. Just past midnight, according to his flashlight illuminated Big Ben, a rattling began at the door that persisted until he was awake. The noise did not sound like that of an animal so he supposed that Ed Carter, Cap McWha, and the rest, had come back a little earlier than intended. When he opened the door and beamed the flashlight into the cold darkness nothing was in sight. He rekindled the fire and dropped off again to be awakened by a rattling of the latch. Again, there was nobody on the stoop. Suspecting some practical joke he took his flashlight and walked a few paces in the direction of the well. There, on the path his beam centred on the form of a man, who appeared to be made of grasses, dead bull-rushes, mosses, and various other water- plants. Laughing at this spectacular if unnerving stunt, he said, "Come on in Ed, you can't fool me!" As he watched "Ed" melted away like an ice-cream in strong sunlight, and when he finally had the nerve to move closer, he found nothing beyond the usual, excepting a huge pile of mosses and plants.

A characteristic of all these lower fay lands is their physical instability. Worse, the spirits of the land might temporarily claim any territory for their use and amusement. My wife and I once owned a hundred acre farm at Tracy, which had once been the way-station on the stage-coach road between Fredericton and Saint Andrews. We thought ourselves entirely familiar with forty cleared acres and the sixty of wood. One occasion, however, we skied three times in a circle before my wife pointed out that we might find our way by examining the drag marks of the ski poles. Although we heard no laugher it was implicit; we arrived home just at dusk, narrowly missing a night in the winter woods. Among the Gaels the pooka was called the "poohan gaor" (he-goat). In lowland Scotland he was the pawky. The Anglo Saxon "poecan" is a word meaning to seduce, deceive or play the fool. "Pukra", the old word for a cat-burglar must certainly confer. The Welsh form is called "pwca" and the Irish "phooka". In horse-form, the puck is extremely well known throughout Atlantic Canada. He is easily isolated from the kelpie since he frequents inland regions where swamps are common. The local pucks were ordinary bogeys, those that one early writer identified as the "ambulones", "spirits that walk about midnight, on heaths and desert places, where they draw out men for the way and lead them all night a by-way, or quite barre (bar) them of their way of passage; these have several names in several places; we commonly call them Pucks." As the above passage suggests, the pookas meant harm rather than simple bewilderment, and there are records of cases where they led lost men over embankments or off the side of mountain cliffs. They were "wicked-minded, black-looking, bad things, that would come in the forms of colts with chains hanging about them. They did great hurt to benighted travellers." This description is a little unusual in that they were generally represented as satyr-like, but remember how the Devil liked the horse form, and it was common to equate the pooka with the Devil. To "play the puck" or "play the pooka" was once understood to equal the expressions "play the deuce" or "play the Devil". They were not tidy animals and my grandmother Mackay used to dis-courage children from picking blackberries after their season with the explanation that the pooka had "poohed" on them. These berries had to be avoided for the more realistic reason that they had a high alcoholic content. The satyr nature of the pucks is reflected in their preferred entertainment. Like other goodfellows or Robin Hoods, our pucks were particularly keen on weddings which used to bring out the girls in their best finery. Grandfather Mackay said they often came as fiddlers, but when the candles were marched out extinguished them with a magical gust of wind. After that the puck went about in the hall kicking the lads or boxing their ears until a major fight was afoot. He invariably kissed the prettiest girls and pinched the others, so that blaming one another or their boy friends, they joined in the melee. If the party survived that, the puck awaited the coming of liquid refreshments and the food and then appeared as a bear, frightening everyone from the place. In New Brunswick, the "pucks" used to be represented by creatures who were definitely spirited, but suspected of being humans in disguise. My great-grandfather Stewart owned the "Hall" at Bonny River, a barn-like building used for all community events. Where there was a free lunch or entertainment, the "pucks" or "straw-men" turned up, their bodies disguised by old clothing

stuffed with straw, their heads hidden under burlap masks. I've been told they were a nuisance as well as the butt of jokes, for these uninvited visitors had boozy smell, danced with the ladies, and attempted what liberties they thought they were allowed. These he-goats were present at political rallies, weddings and Christmas parties, and were sometimes the centre of altercations, but were more often a minor nuisance, carrying of their purloined "eats" before the coming of the law in the form of the local blacksmith. The puck was not always so readily passed off as being "humans in disguise." My great grandfather, Edward Stewart, obtained the Hall at Second Falls, N.B., in payment for a lumberman's grub-stake. In the late fall he boarded wood's-cutters on their way to the outback. These were ordinarily housed on the second floor, the ground floor being a single open room which was hired out for dances, weddings, theatricals, picnics, and community meetings. One year, there was an especially large number of men on the road and a place had to made for them in this barn-like room. The people on the second floor heard nothing but after everyone was asleep one of the party awakened with the feel of a hot and humid breath on his neck. His sudden stir into wakefulness send him tripping over several other men, and all of them soon noticed they were in a room with a slightly wild-looking black stallion. Thinking they might soon be trampled they rushed out the door and closed it behind them. They spent a miserable night in the cold outer air and found nothing in the hall when daylight finally arrived. Luckily not all of these spirits are vindictive. Elf fires or will 'o the wisps are fairly common in the lowlands. These are lights or flames which are seen moving across swamp-land. Will-o'-thewisps were believed to be a personalization of the gopher lights which our English ancestors claimed represented the cowalkers of a special breed of men: boundary-stone movers, usurers and swindlers. Ball-lightning, or gophers at sea, were locally termed the fetch, and some men said these were the souls of those who had drowned. Fire carriers such as Will O' The Wisp were not really the souls of the dead but their earth-bound cowalkers. The flames themselves, were believed not to be elves, but the lights which they carried. Nancy Arrowsmith has elaborated: The flames were not the elves, but the lights they carried. These elves are animated by the (dead) souls of men, women and children. As such they come closer to being ghosts than any other fay people. Ghosts were not earth-bound, but spirits usually confined in the underworld. Their materializations above ground were rarely repeated. The connection with ghosts makes the will o' the wisp correspondent with the corpse candle, the fetch, the guardian, and other spirits, all being variants on the runner. In older records (specifically an Elizabethan pamphlet entitled, The Mad Pranks and Merry Jests of Robin Goodfellow) reference is made to "a walking fire" which appeared before a group of young men and led them across a heath, staying before them until dawn: Get you home, you merry lads: Tell your mammies and your dads. And all those that news desire, How you saw a walking fire Wenches that do smile and lispe.

Used to call me Willy Wispe. It would appear that natural phosphorescence may explain some of the stationary lights that have been observed and that ball-lightning may be the basis for other sightings. As far as we know, there has never been loss of life due to an encounter with a will-o' the wisp although corpse candles are considered dangerous. The bizarre phenomenon known as spontaneous human combustion has involved only 114 people in two hundred years of documentation. The will-o'-the-wisp has sometimes been confused with "foxfire", sheets of light caused by the bioluminescent effect of certain fungi found in rotting stumps and vegetation. The latter is perhaps the "lambent light" that the Old Norse saw guarding their tombs. These were certainly the lights the Micmacs provided at burial sites "to give light and company to the nigelwech (ghosts)." By contrast, the Will O' The Wisp was always in motion. I have seen foxfire and as a child summered with my family at Blackhall's Beach, on Oak Bay. One year I was the lone observer of a fireball that penetrated low-lying clouds and hovered a few feet above the surface of the salt water. This sphere of energy appeared in the daylight, was about three feet in diameter, roiled with colour and discharged in a noisy and spectacular manner. Even at the age of eleven, this occurrence seemed natural rather than something attached to the realm of faery. Nevertheless, it was believable as a "gopher light" and something which should be avoided. A second incident involved both me, and my younger brother Arthur: We had been given the not altogether welcome chore of walking the mile from our cottage to the local general store for milk and bread. It was late summer when the shadows come earlier and seem deeper than at other times, and although we had set out in daylight we returned in complete blackness making us wish we carried a flashlight. Passing the Anglican rectory near the main road, we began the trek down the side road toward the beach. On the left was an open field and beyond that a point of land completely covered with mature pine-trees (now stripped and bulldozed into a public beach). Within the trees we spotted a pin-point light, which had something of the look of foxfire except that it grew more intense. We watched without movement or comment as the cold flame expanded into a column which extended upward into low-lying clouds. We were not particularly disturbed by any of this until the light began to move across the field in our direction. When it moved, we moved! Today a sighting like this would probably be credited to the spotlight of a passing helicopter, but they had not been invented in that time and are hardly soundless. The marsh-bound "fires" took various forms but the will o' the wisp was never considered a definite hazard. At Spiddle Hill, N.S., a ball of fire was content to float above the Ross farm for several years while they were residents. It was the subject of much discussion, but it refrained from anything spectacular beyond lighting up the farmyard. One man put his team in the woods because he was paying too much attention to the light, but his death soon after may have been from physical injuries rather than something he observed in the night air. The Rosses themselves took it matter-of-factly and when they moved it simply went out and made no effort to follow them. Far more eccentric was the will o' the wisp that took the form of a floating barrel spouting fire from its two open ends. This was seen frequently at a salt-water spring on the road between St.

Andrews and Hetherton, N.S. A spectre dressed in grey was observed on an adjacent wood's road and was considered connected with this fire. Fortified with rum, several Nova Scotian men travelled to the edge of Meadow Green intending "to lay the ghost". After hearing bloodcurdling cries and noticing a fire-spouting iron-kettle heading in their direction, the ghostbusters fled. Since we have numerous marshes and bogs, tales involving these creatures are legion. Stuart Trueman contends that: Many a hunter plodding through the deep woods has known the eerie sensation of coming face to face with a cold "bluish" flame, hovering above a tree stump.... It's foxfire, a luminescence resulting from the fine fibrous roots of fungi...infiltrating the entire stump structure. Miss Hattie E. Worden of Gondola Point, N.B., observing this illumination in her firewood said that it emitted enough light for her to see her hands in the dark. "My father", she explained, "often told me as a young man going courting, he was sure he saw a ghost standing before him in the forest path. He swung a jackknife at it, and nearly broke his wrist. It must have been foxfire." All of the lakes of Charlotte County, N.B. have surrounds of "shaking bog", and Kendrick Lake on the Mayfield Road, northwest of Saint Stephen, is no exception. A hunter following his quarry too long in the dusk found himself north of the lake in complete darkness. I have walked on these covers of sphagnum moss, pitcher plants and sundews. Even by daylight they are a treacherous place, where the feet may suddenly sink in two feet of water before the underlying network rebounds. In the worst situation, the greenery may tear allowing a man to be drowned. The hunter should have remained on the uplands, but he was now within the bog, and his compass suggested he would have continue forward or spend the night standing up to his knees in water. The dogs were doing a little better at traversing the moss but they were also famished with cold and hunger. To add to the discomfort rain began to fall. In the midst of this lights began to flicker at the edge of the swamp and soon hackmatachs and spruce trees were seen as clearly as if they stood in the light of day. This seemed a little improvement, but the man was unwilling to move forward afraid of losing the light. Then a wind began to rise and the rain blew so fitfully, he knew he would have to try to leave the place. Being a little superstitious, he bowed to the place where the light appeared brightest and said, "Gentlepeople, would you consider lighting my way to the southern shore?" To his surprise lights began to flash up and down the bog and as he stepped forward the path ahead was more brilliantly lit than elsewhere. Whenever he strayed from the intended path, the guiding light appeared either to the left or the right. The lights continued along the edge of the lake until he reached a path leading to a road where his van was parked. Having a little energy remaining, he turned on the lights and said, "Godspeed you, gentlemen!" There was an unexpected crash of thunder and the lights went out, leaving him in pitch blackness. From a distance he heard echoing laughter. This hunter always ended his story by saying he guessed he was the only person ever to have been led to safety by the will o' the wisp. As we've noted in the introduction this is not the case, and W.H. Maxwell recounted a very similar tale from Ireland in the 1830s. Further, Arrowsmith

says of the wisps: "On the whole, their relationship with men is good." Unfortunately, many people find the swamp-fire frightening and flee from them becoming lost in the woods. Others are hypnotized by them and will follow where they inadvertently lead, into deep water or even over cliffs. The most intriguing escape involving a wisp was not from a swamp but a Detroit elevator. The Cape Breton seer and faith-healer Cleve Townsend was working in the fifty-storey Ford Building after its construction several decades ago. Working overtime on a Saturday, he was instructed to begin installing radiators on the top floor. Workers on the ground floor decided to cut the evening shift short, and forgetting about Townsend they threw the switch on the electricity leaving him in the darkness in a huge room with nothing but a freight elevator in the centre. Thinking he would be a prisoner for the night, he huddled in a corner using his lunchbox for a pillow. Suddenly an intense light invaded the room, but it was obvious that it did not come from any electric bulb. Recognizing this as a form of his runner, or guardian, Cleve followed it "all the way down (the service ladder) through fifty floors." "I came down fine and dandy!" - From an interview with "Cape Breton's Magazine". The Anglo-Saxons created an entire tribe of elfin-folk to people the dangerous bog lands. Here their boo-people were forced to live. A short list would include: boo, boogle, bogle, boggart, bugill, bug, pug, bugbear, bugleboo, bull-beggar, bugaboo, puck, pouke, pawkey, puckle, peregrine pickle, little pickle, poake, puck-hairy, pugsy, and pixie. Bogeyman was the common form in Atlantic Canada, while boo-man or boo-beggar seems to be have been preferred in Newfoundland. Notice that the bogeymen frequently carried their goods in bags, sacks or pouches, and that poca is still the Gaelic word for a sack. Our word pocket may come from this source. In tracking related names, Sir Francis Palgrave has helped to characterize the various bogles: The Anglo-Saxon poecan means to deceive, or seduce; and the Low Saxon picken to gambol; pickeln, to play the fool; the Icelandic pukra, to steal secretly; and the Danish pukke, to scold. It is impossible to characterize these legendary little people in any complete way but they were, at least, troublesome spirits. Almost all lived in out-of-the-way places, and delighted in leading travellers, by means of distracting lights or uncanny noises, "into ditches, bogs, pools and other such scrapes, and then sets up a loud laugh and leaves them quite bewildered..." The character of our bog-residents is still decidedly dark, but they are now less troublesome now our highways and byways run above heavily filled swamps. Even so, places like the former Bocabec Bog, in Charlotte County, New Brunswick remain fay. Residents will tell you that turns in the road through that region vary a little from time to time and "frost heaves" and bumps develop even in the summer. One man described an encounter with a bogey who was "as tall as a tree with arms like logs, speckled all over (freckled?)" A res-ident of South River Lake, Nova Scotia, insisted he was assaulted by "a blanket" which transformed itself into "a fleece of wool" and finally reconstituted itself as "a round black ball." A traveller at East River Point, in that same province, was less certain what opposed him but found the road blocked by "a black thing." Returning home he took down his shotgun and returned to the wayside intending to blast this bogeyman into the beyond. His family members, remembering other incidents where bullets

had ricocheted from such creatures killing the marksman, blocked him from this effort. The bogeymen attempted to terrify, or mislead, men. Failing this they sometimes assaulted people at night and Robert Lowe of Moser's River, Nova Scotia, was one of their victims. He noted that the thing that struck him in the dark "was pretty powerful to be a person, but it was too dark to see anything. It was raining, so not very likely any normal person would be hiding in the bushes." Feeling outmatched Lowe took the sensible route of running for his own doorstep, and inside equipped himself with a lantern and a gun. In the best tradition of men who return again and again to haunted houses to face a virulent monster, Lowe went back to the scene of the attack. Something came running at him out of the pitch-blackness and he fled without firing a shot. The next night he heard the bug-man rustling the leaves in the woods close to his house. The morning after both incidents he emerged at dawn to look for prints or some signs of damaged trees or brush, but there was never anything to be seen in the damp soil except the prints of his own boots. A Rothesay, New Brunswick man on the road to his weekly hand of forty-fives at the village fire hall was driven to the pavement by a stunning blow to his right shoulder. He could see nothing in the darkness but later said that the blow came as, "a great thudding whack, like that given by the flat of a hand." His wind knocked from him, he looked up and thought he saw "an enormous black man wearing a derby." Another memorable attack took place in the Dagger Woods of Nova Scotia where a farmer was driving his team and wagon through the darkened forest. Suddenly the horses refused to move and the farmer got down to assess the difficulty. In mid-step he was swept away on a whirlwind and recovering, found himself seated on the ground, facing backwards, between his two sweating completely immobilized animals. He immediately turned the team about and had no difficulty retreating back down the road. Bougies were known in the Acadian countryside, where they were seen travelling as a single ball of cold light. "Bougie" is retained in the French language as a measure of light intensity, one unit equalling a candlepower. More personal was a happening at Tracy, N.B., which occurred more than two decades ago, when my wife in the farmhouse there. The ell of the house was relatively new, having been constructed at the turn of the century. To reach the cellar one had to exit the main house through the back door, walk down nine steep steps, and pass through several make-shift sheds to what had once been an outside entrance to the cellar. The "psychic atmosphere" had always been oppressive in this unfinished wing and it was a place where one might expect to encounter bogeys. One afternoon while a plumber was at work there, my wife, Anne, opened the back door to see how work was progressing and was immediately swept to the bottom of the stairs. She had some sense of being shoved, but none of falling, and no memory of that brief span of time. When Colin Dunphy picked her up from the floor of the lower level, she had no injuries, and was facing a direction opposite that which might be expected in a normal fall. She said she felt she had been gently carried through the air. Soon after, we disposed of that portion of the house and had no further involvement with the bog-people. Just as the lowest points of land, bogs and lakes were avoided, likewise, the steepest hillsides were avoided, because they were understood to be gates to the place where the wind-spirits lived. Mountain peaks were seen as residences of the air-spirits, and as jumping-off places for gods of the upper air. These places were also seen as the focal points for unusual magic. Thus an

unmarried woman of the Penobscot tribe once looked upon Mount Katahdin (in present day Acadia Park, Maine) and seeing its beauty in the red sunlight said, "I wish the mountain were a man that I might marry him!" After making this wish, she disappeared from the tribe appearing three years after with a small child, who was beautiful, but particularly noted for the fact that his eyebrows were of stone. "For the spirit of that place had taken her as wife, but he forbade her to tell any of their union." As we have noted, all of the uplands in this region are completely weathered. Few of the mountains attain more than 600 meters in height. The Edmundston Highlands, the Chaleur Uplands, the Miramichi Highlands, the Saint Croix Highlands, and the Caledonia Highlands of New Brunswick enclose the central lowlands on the east coast of the province, boxing it in on three sides. The body of Nova Scotia, in the southwest, consists of the Nova Scotia Uplands. Aside from that there are the Cobequid Highlands (between Cobequid Bay and the Minas Basin), the Uplands of Antigonish County, and the Cape Breton Highlands. An insert on the north eastern shore is all lowlands centring about Pictou County. Prince Edward Island is entirely a lowland. The trees, "the hair of the earth" were believed to have "roots" in the underworld as well as in the sky world. Trees which were very old, very twisted, or strangely coloured were seen in the same way as the "bones of the earth", namely as focal points for magic and chaos. Rock wastes and barrens were avoided, where possible, and men stayed clear of the deep forests where there were collections of trees. For our ancestors the old forests represented the unconscious, the unknown, the place where all maps fail. Just as men could go down into fathomless lakes seeking the underground realm, so they could also "talk themselves into" and travel up or down the cosmic tree. Magicians could seek the forest-heart for this purpose, but it was not required because of the thesis of magic that "the part is the whole." Men often selected "power-trees", or even a simple tent-pole, as the focus of their psychic energies. Men did not usually physically travel up the branches into sky world or down the roots into the underworld. More often, they simply projected their first soul into the second soul, the invisible befind or runner, and travelled with it into these other dimensions. Our ancestors also believed in tree spirits. The Anglo-Saxons referred to one of their tree-spirits as the eldritch. This word was derived from two words elf, meaning weird or uncanny, and rich, meaning wealthy and powerful. The original tree people were of the elf tribes of northern Europe, little men who had their capital at Upsala in Sweden. Eldritch, (who was also known as Elberich, or Oberon) was one of the most celebrated little men. According to the old tales, the Anglo-Saxon Oberon was the ruler of all the goodfellows, his personal jester and son being Robin Hood, sometimes called Robin Goodfellow. When the eldritch travelled as men they left their second souls within their trees and were, naturally, protective of these alter-egos. Men once considered it proper to request permission before taking elderberries and those who cut wood in the forest were advised to say: "Mother ellhorn, give please of your wood, and I will give you of mine when my soul has returned to the forest." The consequences of abusing a tree were once very serious; the flesh of men being flayed from them to replace damaged bark. There are all kinds of local beliefs that have to do with wood: "If oak buds before ash look for

a summer of cold and splash; if ash crowds out oak, look for a summer of dust and smoke!" The oak was the tree the druids preferred for making magical wands and staffs, especially if it harboured mistletoe in the branches. The latter plant was called the "thunder besom" and it was thought to attract the god-spirit in the form of lightning. We have heard it advised that a toothache could be cured by scratching the aching tooth with an oak splinter taken from an oak which has been struck by lightning. Felled oaks were reputed haunted by elfs who often offered tempting mushroom dishes to travellers. These were to avoided as poisonous. In our part of the world the druidic prejudice is seen in the fact that a salver for bedsores was made from white oak sap. Another favoured tree was the ash. In New Brunswick we used to pass people with weak limbs through a slash cut in this "witch doctor's tree". Ash trees used in this procedure were bandaged and if the tree mended the patient was sure to mend. This species was also used in "growing out an illness". Children who were sickly were placed beneath an ash and a hole bored above their head. A few strands of hair, spit and blood from the victim were placed in the hole and it was "bunged" with a cork or carved bit of wood. As the tree grew, the child outgrew the symptoms of illness. More practically, trees were used for a variety of medicinal concoctions. Many of the traditional folk remedies which my great grandmother Mackay preferred were of British origin, but those using local rather than introduced plants were likely of Indian origin. Steeped cherry bark was recommended for coughs and colds. Stomach trouble was set right using liquid from the boiled spruce, Prince's Pine or the hemlock. Juniper and alder were combined as a remedy for back trouble and rheumatism; and were placed in warm water to create a useful foot bath. Boiled butternut bark was known to be a good general tonic, while the smoked and powdered roots of wild calla were recommended for asthma and catarrh. Goldenrod was the cure for nausea, and ginseng was thought good for any disease. It was once common practise to plant trees to commemorate a child's birth, and it was thought that the souls of dead children retired to this birth-tree. At death our woodsmen would sometimes break a pine twig and thrust it into the ground over a fresh grave, it being believed that the growth of a tree from this sprout would symbolize a happy afterlife for the dead. It was considered bad protocol for a woods-cutter to go to bed leaving his axe embedded in wood, and our men were against using poplar wood to build a cross because it had supposedly been used in Christ's cross. In this country it was once thought not only that trees could heal but that they could blight the crops, or destroy the health of anyone who offended them. If the child of a colonial was seen to be in "decline", the trees were sometimes blamed at which a man might take them an offering of wool and bread saying, "Take this to eat and to spin and forget my child!" In the seventeenth century a resident at Maugerville, New Brunswick told his neighbours that his property was "in the hands of the three green ladies", three ancient trees that stood on his property. At midsummer eve (June 21) he honoured these protectors by tying ribbons to their branches. When he died, his two older sons dismissed their father's eccentricity although the youngest son continued this tradition. This persistent "anti-Christian" stupidity angered the oldest brother who chopped down one of the "ladies" just before midsummer. Soon after his axe slipped as he was cutting firewood and he died of blood-poisoning. The middle brother went to earth after a similar act about a year later. The young man who remained kept up a good attendance

at church but also "gifted" the remaining tree, and one behaviour or the other may have helped in bringing him wealth and a long life. The pick-tree brag is one of the eldritch clan, commonly called the hawthorn. The brags were the guardians of the passageways to elf land, which were easily located since they were marked by a growth of three hawthorn trees from a single root. The brag itself usually took the form of a small but sprightly horse (typically a galloway) when its spirit came down from its tree. This animal seemed compliant and would take anyone for a ride, which invariably ended with a buck into a mud slough. The pick-tree had many uses, its thorns being used as the equivalent of a steel pin in earlier days. It was also a favourite of witches who were into the art of poisoning, for the tip could be dipped in a virulent solution and used to prick a victim. The pick-tree brag and other tree-spirits (notably those inhabiting alder, poplar, apple and hazel trees) have traditionally assisted men in the art of water-witching. Dowsing, or the act of finding water, followed the fourteenth century craft of using the diving rod to locate metallic ores. In the following century it was a standard tool in the pack of every European prospector. As late as the eighteenth century it was employed in Anglesey to locate a body of copper. Martin Luther was antagonistic to the craft, which caused many witches to add this instrument to their arsenal of evil. The Y-shaped stick is an uncanny device, evidenced by the fact that woodcuts of medieval witches show them riding this "devil's tongue" as often as the broom. Although the "devil's stick" was first used as a tool in prospecting it was later employed to locate stolen goods, detect murder victims, find buried treasure and suggest a location for wells. The uses of the divining rod may be found in the grimoire called "Le Dragon Rouge". To create a witching-rod a Y-shaped segment is cut from the tree, the smaller "handles" are cut about a foot in length while the free tip is cut off at about two inches. My grandfather peeled the bark from the two handles but this was not always done. In use the free end was held vertically between the hands, the handles held between hands which had the fingers curled inwards toward the body with the thumbs pointing away. If metals were sought a sample coin was placed in a notch cut in the free end. Since the rod contained water no special addition was made to find this liquid. The water-witcher proceeded by walking slowly over the ground and directed people to dig where the free end turned downward of its own accord. In recent times this reaction has been attributed to "electricity or something of that sort," but our ancestors knew that the spirits of the trees were at work. In my youth there were periodic polio scares and young people were thought endangered by summer crowding in cities and towns. In the worst years, families fled to the countryside and especially to salt-water locations, the sea being thought prophylactic against disease. My family had few resources but my grandfather owned three garage-service stations in Charlotte County. He at first hired the mess-house of the Anglican Sunday School at Oak Bay and later built his own cottage on hundred-year leasehold property that belonged to the church. My grandparents were Christian, but remained in touch with a few of the elements of witchcraft. Their individual abilities included water-dowsing, weather-lore, divination and the use of home remedies. Grandfather Mackay specialized water dowsing. There were no wells at the time and one spring grandfather took me dowsing for water. Because the property was overrun with alders, grandfather cut a crotch from one of these with his pocketknife. Grampy explained that the forked stick needed to be taken from some water-loving plant in order to be effective.

He said that poplar, chestnut, apple, cherry wood or hazel would serve just as well, but he preferred the swamp-alder or the willow. Birch and maple. spruce and fir were useless in spite of the fact that they grew in well-watered locales. Grandfather Mackay was a Baptist, with their close knowledge of scriptures, and he seemed to be excusing what he was up to when he said that the Old Testament hero Jacob had once used such rods to mark the fattest animals in his father-in-law's herd. Jacob first took wood from the poplar, the hazel and the chestnut tree, and pleated them creating a rod which had the power to mark the animals he selected for his own use. According to grandpa, the belted cattle of our day are descendants of this marking process. It was explained to me that some dowsers have the "rod" imprinted in the lines of their hands and these could dowse by simply walk-ing forward with their arms extended above the ground. The crucial creases are two closest the little finger in the palms of the hand. If these line up when the palm is folded inward there is an innate ability to dowse. Above reservoirs of water the hands of such people would tremble uncontrollably. Lesser folk had to satisfied with the rod, which my grandfather constructed. This was made from a crotch having two arms about a foot-and-a-half long, the bulkier third arm being cut at a distance of about four inches from the joining point with the other arms. At this point grandfather went Biblical again, saying that "Jacob pulled white streaks in his rod"; he therefore, scored the longer arms four inches in from the ends and stripped the bark away from these parts, leaving thee stalk covered. He grasped the arms of lesser diameter between his two hands, fingers curled upward, thumbs pointing up. The pointer was held upward at ninety degrees to the ground, the divining rod placed under slight tension with the hands a little over a foot apart. He then began to move across the land, and when water was sensed, the wand rotated earthwards within his hands. This was although my grandfather's hands did not appear to change position. He drew my attention to the fact that the turning forces had reddened and nearly blistered his hands. This process, he said, had located a communal pump at Blackhall's Beach, Oak Bay, N.B. At the twelve foot level workers using picks and shovels uncovered an ample flow of water. An individual cottager tried to drill his own well a short distance south of this location, and had a dry hole at three hundred feet. He finally obtained water by dynamiting the impervious shale which lay just below his casing. Later, a third well was drilled closer than the first, with only slightly better results. This well offered an indifferent flow of water from the two hundred twelve foot level. My grandfather's attempt work just as well for that is where the major well for the cottage community remains. My brother Arthur attempted to dig a deep well less than fifty feet away but nothing in modern technology could create a water-source of equal value. My grandfather had a few additional bits of lore: If you get lost in the woods, remember that the land is underlaid with all kinds of underground metals; gold, silver and copper all mixed into one. If you have a gold coin, notch the end of the stick and put the dollar there, then the rod will seek gold instead of water. If you don't have that big a coin use one of silver but remember that coin will go to any silver you have in your pocket so you'll have to fire the rest away. Pennies are ok because silver doesn't go to copper. In a fix you can even use pennies in the rod, but remember that pennies are attracted to gold and silver

change! You may have to hunt for quite a spell before finding an ore seam, but you will and every one of these comes out to the ocean. If you don't trust that follow a deer trail till it crosses water, then follow the stream to the salt water. You can use this to look for coal, treasure, oil or shale by putting a little spot of the material you want on the leader. Asked how the rod worked, grandfather became vague: "Some say the guardian pulls it down, but maybe electricity or some force in the body. I don't know quite what, but you're born with it or not; I've certainly found lots of water!" Dr. Ed Wagner attempted to quantify this force when he was a teacher At California State Polytechnic University in 1989. In an abstract published in "Northwest Science Magazine" he stated that he had found that damaged trees let out "a tremendous cry of alarm": If you chop into a tree,(he noted) you can see that adjacent trees put out an electrical pulse. This indicates that they communicate directly...People have known there was communication between trees for several years, but they've explained it by the chemicals trees produce. I think the real communication is quicker and more dramatic than that. These trees know within a few seconds what is happening. This is an automatic response. Wagner measured the effects, which he referred to as W-waves, at about one metre per second through trees and at about five metres per second through air. "They travel much too slowly for electrical waves," he noted. "They don't seem to be electro-magnetic waves. They seem to be an altogether different entity." The trees are not the only wood-dwelling spirits, there are also other spirits dwelling there. Among these are the moss folk, who seem to have been distant cousins of the Fog People. It has been said that they lived only in virgin forests so their numbers must now be greatly reduced. When living in remote places they sometimes lived together, but more often resided alone. The Moss Folk were small in stature, but somewhat larger than the elf, being perhaps two to four feet in height. Clothed in moss and foliage they were camouflaged so that they were often difficult to separate from forest. The men of the tribe were old and furrowed looking, their bodies hair-covered and their skin bark-grey. Except for the spring and summer the males live in the deep woods. The moss-maidens were neither as bad-tempered nor as ugly as their men and would frequently exchange their knowledge of the future and medicinal herbs for the foodstuffs or cloth of humans. When they had traded for cloth they were sometimes seen wearing green clothes faced with red and wearing cocked hats decorated with feathers. They are said to be ruled by the bush-grandmother, a white-haired little woman said to be as old as the hills, and with feet made entirely of moss. Most raise their children in patches of old man's beard high up in the trees, never venturing far from their birth place. Since these creatures derive from Teutonic-Scandinavian myth the suspicion that they were once an historic race is raised by the fact that they were often cited as the quarry of Odin and his Wild Hunt. In some places the object of the hunt was a visionary boar or a wild horse, but in southern Germany, it was always these "white breasted maidens who were caught and borne

away once in seven years." It has been suggested that the moss maidens may have personified the autumn leaves torn from the trees by the gales of winter, but originally the rape may have been more explicit. All of my Stewart, Gillmor and Mackay ancestors at Bonny River were in some measure involved with the lumber trade on the Maguaguadavic River, which is just next door to Lake Utopia, the haunt of our most publicized sea-serpent. Woodsmen used to cut three crosses on trees which were to be hewn. When the stumps were all that remained the moss-folk used them as places of refuge to escape the cannibalistic woods-whooper.On their hunting trips into the deep woods they are supposed to have met moss maidens, who insisted on a simple protocol: no human should peel the bark from a tree on the pain of having his own skin stripped to repair the damage; none should reveal the content of dreams which came to them while sleeping in the forest; bread should be baked without carroway seeds. Providing this was done, the little moss-people would exchange hospitality, coming to the hay-wagons covered with canvas to ask for a bit of food and to admire or criticize the housekeeping. The moss folk would also offer to interpret the dreams of the men who slept in the forest. If they were given bread baked with carroway seeds these little women might exchange their knowledge of the healing properties of plants. If they were properly fed and honestly dealt with they would always find a means of being useful. The moss folk were knowledgeable about the healing properties of plants and would explain their use to industrious men and women. Often their return was simply good advice but they were expert spinners, weavers and knitters, and would often lean down from a tree to offer a ball of yarn to those women who had befriended them. It was well to accept as each ball had a magical "twist" which allowed it to be used for more projects than seemed possible. My great-grandmother Priscilla Mackay used to say that some of their kind would always arrive in the fall and demand a part in the cooking, washing and haymaking, as well as tending the cattle. They were particularly fond of human bakery products and would do what they could in exchange for dough the size of a half mill stone. This they would bake returning some small amount to the householder and appearing greatly offended it was rejected. The stories of the Moss Folk have many similarities to the stories of fairy gold form Scotland as the following story shows. A man from the community of Flume Ridge, New Brunswick, was travelling south through the forest when he met a tiny woman struggling along with a wheelbarrow which had a split hub. Being a blacksmith, he offered to make repairs with bronze. He carried the little barrow to his shop, renovated it with metal and gave it back to the mosswoman. She was exceedingly grateful, but the smith was amused when she "paid him" by filling his hands with wood chips. So as not to offend her he placed the chips in his pocket, but when she was out of sight threw them into the grass. He went back to work dismissing the incident, but at home discovered that one of the chips had become threaded into his pocket lining and had turned to gold. By kerosene lantern, the blacksmith and his wife made careful examination of the tall grass around his shop, and were afterwards counted as wealthy citizens of the community of Bonny River. The Moss people were generally a harmless folk, other woods dwellers were not so harmless. Our Indians also understood that the most remote forest was a dangerous place, physically and psychologically:

The further into the forest, the stranger the encounter ... Within the Micmac universe, the forest is Chaos, the unconscious, the unknown, the place where the map ends. Within the forest the tree is an image "essential to the beliefs of shamanism because it connects the three fundamental zones of the cosmos; its roots penetrate the Underworld, its branches Sky-world." This is precisely the theology of the Anglo-Saxons, whose world tree was the power-centre of the nine worlds of their north, which were also accessible to those able to travel along its roots or branches. The most interesting tale I can recall comes from Oak Bay where I heard of a pair of woodsmen working on a Saint David's Ridge cuttings. By afternoon they had exhausted their supply of water and molasses and one of them said aloud, "I wish I had a jug of buttermilk!" Brushing the sweat from his forehead he was surprised to see a small man, dressed in ragged clothing, standing in his path offering a bowl of white liquid. Being a cautious person he turned aside, but his mate was too thirsty to quibble about the source and took it with a thank you and downed it all! Afterwards the man who accepted this help lived a long and prosperous life. The reluctant woodsman was pelted with stones from the hand of the retreating fairy and that night was pinched black and blue by some invisible fiend. In Charlotte County, there were individual as well as small communities of wood's spirits. As children growing up in Saint Stephen we were all warned against the prowling bogey-man who gobbled up those out past their curfew or who travelled beyond their limits. Since my family lived with a woods, a railway line and unfenced oil and gas storage tanks one block north, this was a necessary precaution. When the family visited with my grandparent at Grand Harbour on Grand Manan Island, I was surprised to find that this sinister character had kin. We were warned off the dilapidated shore wharfs with the threat that the boo-baiter would get us, and were told that the boo-buck, who lived in the fields and woods behind the house, was an equally nasty character. Since I knew there were few deer on the island I doubted this spirit a little more than the others. My cousins knew a little more about them: The bucks lived in fields until the hay was cut in mid-summer. After that they moved into the woods and by the end of fall were holed up in the deepest recesses of the island. Again as winter deepened they crept closer the houses which paralleled the shores of the island. At mid-winter they were thought to be close at hand and potentially destructive unless they were persuaded away by the offering of a small handful of bread or a bowl of milk placed on the back porch just prior to Christmas. In my observation, the chickens, the cat or the dog consumed this offering, but it was explained that boo-bucks were clever shape-changers, which sometimes passed as domestic animals. Fifty years later, I was much surprised to learn that the "bucks" were properly descendants of the German "boche". My grandparents claimed to be of Dutch ancestry, fishermen who came to the island from Eastport after the Revolutionary War, but it now appears they were the "deutsche". In any event, all of the northern European peoples knew of the "kornboches", which lived in the "corn", this word being their designation for any standing grain crop. In the old world, men killed the boche or at least chased them from the fields with their scythes. The corn-king was cor-nered in the last sheaf cut and this was fashioned into a spirit-mannikin hung on the kitchen wall through the winter. The king was fed to horses that went to plough the field

in the spring. THe fodder passed through these animals returning the spirit of the corn to the ground so that it could revitalize the spring crop. In parts of Scandinavia and Germany the corn-king was left standing in the field as food for Odin's horse when the Wild Hunt poured out of the north. Although it was never stated it was implied that the boo-bucks were into heinous crimes, which we were later able to categorize as murder, child-molestation, the beating of females, rape, kidnapping and, of course, murder. The field-goats might have been more believable in Europe where goats are common; nevertheless the boo-buck, sometimes called the boo-bagger (as he carried children away in a gunny sack) was mother's helper keeping children in line on the island and elsewhere. Even without the misplaced boo-bucks, it was thought advisable to be cautious in the woods since one never knew who or what might be watching. Even the birds were potentially dangerous, and in particular the birds of the corvidae family. The corvidae of eastern North America fall into four species: the Canada or grey jay, the blue jay, the raven, and the crow. These witch-like animals are the clan known locally as the corbys, or gorbys. All of the corvidae family of birds are credited with extra-ordinary intelligence. The blue jay has been described as "noisy and con-spicuous... behaving in much the same manner as do their cousins the Grey Jays." Ravens have been declared to possess, "uncanny powers, not only in the matter of detecting food, but in being able to pass the word along to others of their tribe." The crow plagues the farmer by uprooting newly seeded crops "and has even been found guilty of picking holes in ripening pears and apples." Generally these birds have been characterized as "bold" and impudent": It is common practise for (them) ... to enter a camp to steal food when the camper's back is turned. The fur-trapper hates it whole-heartedly, for the very good reason that it steals the bait from his trap lines.... Locally, bird familiars were lumped by the Micmacs among other animal familiars. Some claim that the wisk-i-djak is their equivalent of the grey jay, the term being descriptive of "a mighty power that lived inside the bird." The grey jay is sometimes described as "a magnified chickadee". This animal is roughly a foot in length having plumage of a soft neutral grey colour. It has a dark crown on its head, while its throat and face are white. Its tail is slightly tipped with light grey. In the lumber camps, it was noticed that the grey jays were attracted to beer, ale and other alcoholic drinks, hence Whisky Jack. They were also known as carrying jacks, or carrying jays, because of their habit of flying off with objects or food pirated from the lumber camps. For this same reason, they were termed camp robbers or carrion jays. Because they stole meat they were also known as caribou birds, moose birds, meat birds, grease birds or venison hawks. More anciently, they were termed Hudson Bay birds since they dogged the trade routes of the trapper-traders. While they were not usually admired they were some company to wood's travellers and were occasionally termed the woodsman's friends. In lumbering camps, garby, gorby, or gorbey, was another name applied to the grey jay. The gorby though was not considered merely a nuisance, but was distinctly a bird of ill omen. This distinction appears in the ballad of "Tom Cray":

He started for the landing, one morning quite late, But little aware of his terrible fate. When down came two bluejays, a garby and took The miserable soul of the cook of Back Brook. Now its travellers take warning, of fowls be aware, Of the bluejays and garbys that swarm in the air. When you go out a-walking, be armed and keep look, That you lose not your soul from the bank of the brook. Normal men regarded the large gorbys as the equivalent of black cats, thus men who were setting out hunting or fishing would return home if a crow flew across their path. My Grand Manan ancestors were return to harbour if a crow flew across the bow of their fishing boat as they left harbour. I have seen fishermen suddenly right their boats (being careful to turn with the sun) to avoid having the crow-"god" or "goddess" fly across their bow. Often they would parallel the bird's flight for several minutes rather than take chances. From these examples it is clear that most men considered gorbys to be the embodiment of dangerous magicians. This explains why Ives was told that woodsmen avoided offending or damaging members of the crow family. One of these men told him: Anything that happens to a gorby will happen to you .... A woodsman kicked at one which was stealing his lunch and broke its leg. A day or two after that , the man got his foot caught in the trace chain of a scoot and suffered a fractured leg. Another man threw a stick at one and broke its wing, and that afternoon broke his arm.... In agricultural communities, and towns the gorby was also recognized as any bird of ill-omen. (In some areas, however, the distinction that the bird must be of the corvidae family was not made. For instance in Albert County, New Brunswick and in southern Maine, folklorist Harold Ives found that gorbys were not known, but their function was taken over by robins, chickadees and juncos.) In my home community, St. Stephen, N.B., the largest gorbys were sometimes referred to as "black johns", the devil incarnate being identified as the "Black John". Speaking of lapses in Christian ethics, old-timers used to say: "When Black John rises up, the minister lies down." The origins of this fear and respect for crows and ravens is probably a lingering ancestral memory of the Norse invasions. One must be aware that Odin, the Norse god, sat upon his northern throne with two black ravens perched on each shoulder. These pets, named Hugin (Thought) and Munin (Memory) were sent each morning to spy out enemy territory, and in the evening they whispered news of the world into the ears of the god. The Celtic peoples were surely aware of these raven spies and would harbour deep suspicion of any bird which might prove to be Hugin and Munin. Consequently, while the people of ancient Denmark, Norway, and Sweden thought of themselves as the Norsk, or north people, the British had other names for them including Duthgall (dark scum) and Fingall (light scum). The former referred particularly to the Danes, not because of their hair-colour or complexions, but because they rode the seas in high-crested sailing ships displaying the blue-black emblem of the raven or crow. In addition their ships were black and, unlike the Celtic and Anglo-Saxon defenders of Britain, they had the unfair advantage

of plated black body-armour. Considering their past reputation for rape, pillaging, and the firing of villages, it is understandable that the more southern Teutons as well as the English have a long memory for crows and the colour black. At Saint Andrews, N.B., my brother Art and I watched with amusement the baffled reaction of a new crew member of the Fisheries Research Board vessel, when his black suitcase was unceremoniously thrown back down the gangplank. Sea-going communities had their own version of the gorby in the seagulls and petrels, which we formerly mentioned as Mother Carey's chickens. Not all spirits were land or sea-bound, some were bound to a particular building, house or barn. One of these house-bound spirits was the bodach. The bodach was a mortal earth spirit, often regarded as human but sometimes identified as one of the sidhe. The bodach's name is derived from the Gaelic words meaning a herdsman, or rustic, and is indicative of his nature. The bodach is a relative of the brownie of northern England and low-land Scotland, the English hobgoblin, the German kobold and the Scandinavian nis. Unlike meetings with the sea-spirits, which were often dangerous and considered ill luck, having one of these spirits about the house was not considered a bad thing: In Scotland, every house used to have its own (bodach) who was especially helpful when the owners were brewing beer. They would pour a little into a holed stone ... and he would hasten the brewing process and improve the flavour...Increasing industrialization and high taxes on malt forced some farmers to stop brewing, and many of these little folk found themselves without jobs. This domestic little fellow, exchanged farm labour for a place in the home of a family. Of course, there were other jobs to be done besides brewing and the bodach could be a valuable friend if adequately fed and not ridiculed. They regularly fed and milked the cows, churned the butter, mowed the hay, pastured animals, and would even go for the doctor when the mistress of the house suffered the labours of childbirth. The bodachs were not universally liked. Christian ministers were leery of different which they thought might be connected with the Devil. Great grandmother Priscilla Mackay remembered that her father had said that there had been a time when every family in Sutherlandshire, Scotland had harboured such "evil spirits", who served them, but required pagan sacrifices in return. When the milk was churned, for example, it was though necessary to sprinkle the four corners of the house with a few drops to appease the bodach. People also kept a slightly hollowed bodach stone in which they placed a little of their brew to placate the little fellow. The bodach also expected a part of the grain-harvest to be set aside as "the devil's due". Although these stooks were never tied down or bound in any way they were resistant to the force of any wind short of hurricane force. The highly religious King James VI described the bodach's place in the household in less glowing terms: The spirit appeared like a rough man, and haunted divers houses without doing any evill, but doing, as it were, necessarie turns (chores) up and down the house; yet some were so blinded as to believe that the house was all the sonsier (luckier), as they called it, that such spirits resorted there.

It is doubtful that King James actually saw a bodach as they were usually invisible. The few sightings of bodachs usually occurred when the male bodachs, who were more servile than the female of their species, entered into contracts with men. The contract usually stipulated that the bodach would do general household chores in return for a small allowance of food and clothing and a permanent place in the chimney corner. According to tradition a bodach entering into a contract would present himself to the patriarch of a family where he was looking for work. If accepted, he put on his cloak of invisibility and never reappeared except to reintroduce himself to the next master upon the death of the lord of the household. This wish to remain unseen was so great that the bodach would wait until after dark to perform chores.All were described as poorly clothed and completely covered with hair. On the few occasions that the bodachs were seen their identifying feature was that they had webbed fingers and toes. This feature suggests that the bodach shared a common ancestry with the mhorrigan sea spirits. Otherwise the bodach was unremarkable, differing little from the lowland, or English, brownie. Bodachs were more serious minded than brownies and reacted badly when offended. Like the Scots, with whom they boarded, they bristled at anything resembling charity. As a group, these lit-tle people hated shows of generosity and ostentation. Some of the bodach preferred to go naked and would immediately depart if any in-dweller offered them clothing. Others would accept food or clothing but, if given food that seemed to fine for their palate, or clothing that seemed excessive to their sense of fashion, they would leave the residence taking the luck of the house or farm with them. The usual food for a bodach would have been a small portion of bread and honey and a bit of milk, or a sample of homebrew placed near the fireplace in a hollowed stone bowl. It was though absolutely necessary to bring samples of ale and newly formed butter to the bodach "for the luck of the house." Bodachs were usually given a single stook of grain which stood unprotected in the frame yard. In spite of its exposed location this haystack was never disturbed by the wind. At Bonny River, the first home in the region was Suther Hall, erected by Hugh Mackay, an officer who served with the Queen's Rangers during the Revolutionary War. He was one of those placed on permanent half-pay, who received massive land grants in southern New Brunswick. Hugh was a charitable man in spite of the fact that he earned a fortune as a lumbercutter and trader. His home was reputed to contain a bodach, and several interesting stories have been forwarded concerning it. It was said that the Mackay's little man was only seen on one occasion by the Colonel and that it stood between two and two and one-half feet in height, completely covered with shaggy cowlike hair from head to foot. The bodach wore tattered hand-me-down clothing of coarse brown wool during the winter but it was said that all of the clan went naked during the warm months. The Mackays were not niggardly in their treatment of the little man whose preference ran to "a piece of wad" (i.e. a scone smeared with honey) rather than fancy clothing. Stories of the bodach, or brownie, usually centre about their interaction with servants in the home and the Mackay's bodach was no exception. The mischievous little man especially liked to place himself between serving girls who were sharing a bit of food and invisibly pilfer from

each in turn. Since neither girl could see the bodach, they invariably accused one another, and once open warfare had erupted the bodach would run off laughing. House-spirits could be very useful, but the one at Suther Hall had the habit of "knocking about" at night disarranging the kitchen if it was left in good order and tidying it up if things were left a mess. The servants once made an attempt to banish the "ghost" of Suther Hall by leaving out a small green hood and mantle, in the hopes of offending him. But since it was not an offering from the master or mistress of the house the bodach ignored the insult and went about his work as before. The local Anglican clergy were no more fond of the bodach than the servants. Despite their helpful ways the Anglican clergy suspected them of having the Devil as their master. With the begrudging consent of the Mackays, one of the clergymen hid out in the barn until it was time for the little man to begin his evening chores and then began the rite of Christian baptism. Thoroughly dismayed the bodach disappeared forever from the neighbourhood. This did not seriously hinder the fortunes of the Mackays but Suther Hall is now a memory. After dark, the bodach performed all of the usual farm chores in exchange for board and a small food and clothing allowance. The food would have been a small portion of bread and honey and a bit of milk, or a sample of homebrew placed near the fireplace in a hollowed stone bowl. It was though absolutely necessary to bring samples of ale and newly formed butter to the bodach "for the luck of the house." Bodachs were usually given a single stook of grain which stood unprotected in the frame yard. In spite of its exposed location this haystack was never disturbed by the wind. Bodachs were more serious minded than brownies and reacted badly when offended. The bodach's close cousin is the brownie who has nostril slits rather than a true nose. Like the bodach the brownie would do chores in exchange for food and a dwelling place. The physical similarities aside, the brownie tended to have a nastier turn to his character. My great-grandfather, Thomas Alexander Mackay, lived at Bonny River, New Brunswick, after his family emigrated there from Glasgow in 1828. Like all his Scottish neighbours, he was accompanied by a hearth-spirit, which some suspected projected itself into the family cat. In any event, the brownie bowl was dutifully filled at night and always found empty by dawn. His wife, Priscilla Williamson, recognized the prerogatives of the brownie, which explains why she would never shake the crumbs from a table-cloth or sweep the floor after the setting of the sun. These were then the duties of the brownie and he was angered when men or women suggested that he was incapable or inefficient. There were tales of farmers who had crossed their brownie by such simple acts: Once a young girl responsible for replenishing the brownie stone filled it first with honey and then with oatmeal and a spot of cream. Thinking the usual sweet stuff had been omitted, the bodach flew into a rage and rushed to the barn where he broke the neck of a prized cow. In a more reflective mood, he went back to his oatmeal and discovered his mistake. At that he compensated the farmer by leaving a pile of wood chips on the table. These turned to gold with the rising of the sun. Yet another cousin of the bodach and brownie was the Pixie. Pixie is an English word derived from Pucksy, the endearing diminutive "sy" being added to Puck after the fashion of Betsy, Nancy, or Dixie. Pexy probably represents a difference of dialect as does Pisgy and Pecksy. The pixies were less benign than even the brownies. According to Devon peasants, the Pixies were the spirits of unbaptized infants, but others said they were a separate fairy, very small but of

handsome form. In southern England, Pixies were offered a basin of water (similar to the bodach and brownie's saucer of milk) for which they would exchange money of the realm. They frequently stole children and often "Pixy-led" travellers. Like Poltergeists they generated uncanny sounds between the walls in order to frighten people. They were less serious than their German kin frequently blowing out candles on courting couples or producing obscene kissing sounds which were always misinterpreted by parents. The Pixy-Light which led people from the path was exactly like that of the Will O' The Wisp (which, see). Another class of housebound spirit are the knockers and knocky- boohs. These are earth spirits corresponding with the German poltergeists. Above-ground knockers are difficult to distinguish from the shadow men or fylgiars except that their noises usually come from within the house. The invisible knocky-boohs like to move lumber, glass and barrels, but are not very good at it; from the times they drop these commodities. In a jest-full mood they like to whip bedclothes from the beds of sleepers and will even engage in tugs of war over the ownership of sheets. They have also been known to levitate blankets and sheets above a sleeping human or even give the bed a good shaking if the cold air doesn't bring him to wakefulness. At Seabright, Nova Scotia, an ingenious spirit regularly knotted clothes on the line and pleated the sheets while men and women slept. Flying knives are modest manifestations, several houses having served as racecourses for invisible galloping horses or other animals including dogs, cats, rats and pigs. In some places electrical appliances have behaved erratically and lamps have been smashed, seemingly in a spontaneous fashion. On completely isolated Green Island, in Mahone Bay, lightkeepers have seen a rubber-booted walker as the forerunner of storm; but this was not as terrifying as the very real destruction of storm doors on windless nights, the sounds of untraceable steps coming as far as the door of lighthouse; and the actual smashing of the light on three separate occasions. The winding chain that drove the old mechanical turning mechanism has fallen with the sound of a truckload of tin being dumped. The fire has roared in a fuelless stove; pans have rattled; there have been sounds very like that of bowling. Tenders have heard shingle nails being driven when there were no carpenters about and have invariably heard three knocks before the shattering of the glass globe that housed the light. Maritimers have heard creatures from the unseen world crawling on their roofs, have experienced the sound of a rock-like phantom rainfall, heard invisible woodpiles fall and have stood aghast while windows raised or fell without human aid. Men have exorcised, abandoned, fenced off and demolished houses, or parts of houses, affected by virulent haunts but even the destruction of a haunted house has not always eliminated the problem. When one such house was removed from Devil's Island in Halifax Harbour the wood was incorporated into other buildings and bad luck followed. The owner of the new structure wryly reported that something untoward always occurred on the twentieth day of each month. From the above it might appear that all the action took place in Nova Scotia, but although more incidents have been reported from that province the knockies are well known in New Brunswick: At Lewisville, Stuart Trueman reported tales from a house bedeviled by the sounds of clicking heels, crying and "noises like fighting, or pushing furniture around..." At Lincoln, on the Saint John River, he was told of a house filled with "loud creaking," and "cracking

noises, as if boards were being pulled apart, like wreckers tearing (at) a house." On remote Cheyney's Island, which is southeast of Grand Manan Annie Foote heard recurrent "pounding, whistling, talking, singing. I thought it was someone working on an uncompleted camp near by; but it was locked, and no one was there." The New Brunswick indoor knockers are all associated with particular house, to which they seem bound: The tale of the Holly House at Markhamville was given us by photographer Beth Powning. Mr. Holly lived not far from the Powning pottery studios in a house that had originally belonged to his parents. The old bachelor remained there until the knockies moved in. It is well-known that these spirits are cantankerous,like the bodachs, picking up rooms that are traditionally a mess while disassembling the work of careful housekeepers. Mr. Holly was not in the latter class so his knockie would set an entire table for two, create a slam-bang of noise in the middle of the night, and switch on the light and radio for company. That house is long abandoned and is now falling into its foundation. Not too surprisingly, the Maritimes attracted a fair number of eccentrics, and misfits to its shores among the new immigrants. A new country, still without the pretensions of the Old Country's society, must have seemed a blessing to those people who were on the fringe of society. Among those who arrived on the shore would surely have been some of the tricksters and wise-women or men. In Celtic Britain there were no witches. The hagges and wights, the ancestors of the witch, arrived with Anglo-Saxon searovers, who did not "trouble" the island kingdoms of Britannia and Hibernia until the middle of the fifth century after Christ. It is a misnomer, therefore, to speak of Celtic witchcraft, and it is equally improper to speak of druids, witches and baobhs as if they were partners in the "sgoile-dubh", or black-arts. The "sgoile-dubh" was anciently considered the business of the "bhaobh", or "baobh". It would appear that the baobh belonged to a diverse group of characters, which the English might have termed the boo-men, boo-baggers, boggers (not to be confused with buggers), or, the previously mentioned bogeymen. The origin of the word can be found in "Bo" (plural "ba") the Gaelic for cow, which was often combined with adjectives to produce compound words such as "bodach", cow-herd, or old man; "bo-aire", literally the high cow, a person of importance; and "bo-dubh", the black cow, which is to say, a witch or wizard. The English "boo" and the related Celtic "bo" are both interjections, presumably meant to imitate the lowing sound of a cow. In earlier days, such sounds were used in the field to signal friends, express contempt or aversion, or to startle and frighten enemies. When Englishmen found themselves in an awkward situation, they spoke of being caught "between the devil and the deep blue sea." A Gael with few options would say that he stood, "eadar a'bhaobh 's a' bhuarach": "between the magician and the staked cow." The latter tended to get surly from standing in the sun, and there was "a superstitious fancy" that men nudged by the horn of a tethered cow would afterwards be childless. Baobh is still used to in the Gaelic tongue but now describes "a hag, a male or female practitioner of magic, or a carrion crow." It will be noticed that we have used two spellings for baobh, and there are others (badb, boadb, boabh, bhoabh, or bhuabh). Remarked Arland Ussher: The Gaelic, is a language of prodigious diversity of sound and expressiveness of phrase...It has about twice the number of sounds that other European languages can boast....

Another Celt, agreed that Gaelic has spellings which are highly poetical, but labels this diversity as "a learner's labyrinth". The trouble comes from the fact that the Gaels were a verbal rather than a literate people. The magical binding of words to paper, from which they might be reincarnated, was never a part of the ancient Gaelic crafts. When Gaelic words were finally set to paper, they reflected many pronunciations, and the Gaels had no writers of the status of Chaucer and Shakespeare, whose work might serve as a standard. As a result, "English renderings of ancient Irish names, naturally, vary considerably, and of course there is no "official" or "correct" spelling of any of them." (One example: In ancient Irish Gaelic what we refer to as the leprechaun was entitled the lubarkin. In Ulster this sidhe-man was the lucharman; in Cork, the claurican; in Kerry, the luricaun; and in Tipperary, the lurigaudaun.) In attempting to treat this problem we quote the spellings preferred by individual writers, attempting to relate those that are not easily recognized as synonyms. The Celtic view of the supernatural is different from that of the Anglo-Normans, who tended to fear and disparage anything which they did not understand. Among the Gaels, waiting for knowledge was considered akin to waiting for weather; every variety arriving in its own time: "It is ane of their tenants that everything goeth in circles!" Celtic people suspected that in the course of cycles of death and reincarnation the veils would eventually be lifted. Thus, fears of the "sidhe" (adj. supernatural) were unnecessary since one might eventually become a "sidhe" oneself. The boabhs were not witches or magic workers as we understand the term to mean. What the boabh did for a living was termed craft by the Anglo-Saxons. It is revealing that among the Tuatha daoine, the boabhs were probably the members of a privileged class, which the Milesians described as the "aes dana" (people of poetry). The phrase actually embraced a much wider variety of skills, including musicians, bards, singers, historians, jurists, physicians and those who worked with metals. The skills of any of these might be considered "sgoile-dubh" (black art) or "sgoile-bann" (white art) depending on whether they were used to damage or aid the individual who perceived them. Any poorly developed craft was labelled "sgoitechd", which is to say silliness or quackery. It should be noted that the Gaels considered all men to be "born above their station". This meant that no matter how poor or lowborn a citizen was he might conceivably become king. It was considered that men were no lower than the gods, sharing some of the creator-god's "breath of life" with all higher beings. There were ways of acquiring additional spirit, which evidenced itself as skills, thus men might aspire to godhood. These skills were found in the basic kinds of Gaelic "magic": divination, or sooth-saying, employing "an da shealladh" (the two sights) and wonder-working, which carried ordinary crafts to god-like heights. Among my kind, it had always been suggested that the Scots had a high regard for education, formal and otherwise. I was, therefore, disappointed to find that, "The majority of Gaels who settled in the New World could not read their own language." Charles W. Dunn has estimated that perhaps one in five could read and write, the others being, "contented to rely on oral transmission for their literary recreation." Apparently, a few of these Gaels, driven by the iron-bound winter, acquired self-taught skills from their Bibles and the religious publications which followed them from the Old World. This situation perhaps held for the Gaelic-speaking Irish, who arrived at a later date. The well-

schooled Loyalists, who arrived after some of the Scots and before others, must have felt immensely superior to the bewildered Gaels as they filed down gang-planks onto the Canadian shore. This is not to suggest that the Gaels lacked "luchd-ceairde" craft and "ealdhain", learning, but they were not literate in the usual sense of the word. Realizing the need to compete with the "sassenachs", the long-knives or Saxon peoples, the Gaels surrendered their language for that of the traditional "enemy" and became addicted to gaining literacy, money, and power, usually in that order. The oral tradition was still held in high regard for some time and some of my grandparents generation used to describe severely constipated people as being "book-bound". When I tried using that expression, as a child, my folk made it clear that they could read and write by their negative reactions. I'm not certain that my great-great grandfather Alexander would have objected, he did bring a Gaelic Bible from Scotland but there is no certainty he was literate in either Gaelic or English. Clearly, they were not alone in being socially inferior since they did not invent the expression "book bound". It is very clear that our ancestors sometimes considered reading and writing an uncanny business. The peoples who spoke the Celtic tongues of Britain (the Irish, Scots, Welsh, and residents of the Isle of Man in the latter days) were committed to spoken language, their druids forbidding the bound words of the sassenach tribes as a means of passing on the laws and history of their people. In their view the acts of reading and writing involved use of the "sgoileshamhraidh", or the black art. It was a mat-ter of observation that writing involved the capture of sounds which normally had free passage through the air. The "baobh", or witch, then converted them into mystic symbols which were bound to wood tablets or paper. When this disreputable creature wished to liberate these sounds she used her "speller", or wand, to point them out and return them to freedom. Because the Celtic people were verbal, rather than literate, people they held word-magic in great esteem. The power of words was believed to be so great that it was not even necessary to speak the words aloud in order to enable their magic. "Strong wishing" was once considered a sinful act; it was a popular belief among Celts that if you wished yourself anywhere at night, whether you were a practising witch or not, you were sure to travel, spiritually if not corporeally, to the desired location. This was not, in itself, a dangerous business, but the "earth-spirits" were certain to demand payment for the transport, and it was never certain what they might require. Any individually who thoughtlessly wished himself in a new place after dark was advised to hedge saying aloud, "I wish I was at..., from the bottom of my soul I wish this, but not on this night." Word-magic also allowed the baobh to move invisibly from place to place through the aid of the sith-winde. The baobhs and mentally "challenged" people were known to be able to call upon these winds to move instantaneously from place to place. (Members of my own family claimed that the baobhs had no power of their own to subvert time and space, but used their forked-sticks and brooms to pass from ground level, up a chimney, to the level of the rooftops. There they were met by the "wind-bucks" who, for consideration, carried them where they wished to go.) The emotional and practical impact of sheer words, or music, divorced from overt communication, remains an important part of religious prayer, stage hypnotism and politics. Considering the use which Adolph Hitler was able to make of words we should not doubt their potential for harm. Nede's music may not have involved any deception, considering the fact

that half of all diseases are now known to be psychosomatic, the symptoms resulting from the victim's own fear. Today, if a doctor were to inform an individual that he had accidentally swallowed a poisonous tablet this might not result in a fatality, on the other hand it would certainly produce anxiety in the most iron-willed person. Those who were a little less secure might suffer from dizziness, faintness, violent stomach cramps, vomiting or death. It is, therefore, incorrect to suppose that the boabh was an impotent "poseur". If the wordsmith though he was powerful and his victim concurred that he might be harmed by indirect means, he was likely to succumb to the mere news that actions had been taken against him. In Celtic lore it is emphasized that disbelievers were protected from the force of the boabh by their disbelief. Conversely, those who believed they could be stricken by words or music were open to damage. If you believe in curses then being told: "May you melt from the earth as snow into the ditch!" is to be subject to an honest and dreadful malediction. The Hanson curse has some association with my family since my grandfather's business partner was Will Hanson of Saint George, and he himself was named Wesly Hanson Mackay. I have never cared to examine the connection between these Hansons and those that lived during the 1850's in Bocabec country. The Hansons and the Turners were related lumber men working the deep winter woods when the old man of the clan "turned over".They were at Forest City and the tramp home would have been arduous. They therefore sent word to Bocabec that the funeral should go ahead without them. Instead, the ladies decided to preserve the old man for a spring burial. They placed his body in the woodshed under burlap, but some starved rodent ate the patriarch's nose. This could not be kept from the notice of the preacher and the funeral oration was taken from second Kings, a diatribe and "curse" not yet forgotten. Bad luck was afterwards said to plague both the Turners and the Hansons, and a ballad was composed: Woe unto ye Bocabecers. Ye Hansons and Turners We think more of logs Than ye do of your God You wouldn't come out of the woods To bury your father. For this, there will be a bear Come to devour you. Not one of those little black bears That roam the Bocabec Hills. But the Great Bear (Odin or nathair?) With jaws of iron and teeth of brass. The shortest form of word-magic survives in oaths, curses, and blessings. The oath invokes the help of a god or spirit in fulfilling a promise and many are now degraded into mock-oaths. Hence some of today's Irish swear "by the powdhers of delft" (the powers of death). When my grandfather Mackay, who was three generations removed from the Gaelic or Scotland, wished to affirm or negate a verbal contract he often said "Yesiree bob (boabh)!" or "Nosiree bob!" without realizing that he called upon an uncanny witnesses. When I dallied as a child, I used to be hurried along with the phrase, "Come quickly, for Old Bob will have the hindmost!" He also referred to unlucky persons as "rent-payers to hell!" Many years later, I learned that both the sidhe and the boabh were thought to owe allegiance to some devil, who Christian missionaries

equated with Satan. Padraic Colum has noted that those who make promises under oath are "in general ignorant of their proper origin" (and supposed power). Two common expressions heard in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia at the middle of this century were "The Deuce take you!" and "The Deuce you say!" The first was a mild profanity and the other an expression of disbelief. Both invoke the traditional word-magic in a subverted form, calling upon a mortal earth spirit, a reincarnate pagan god of northern Europe now identified with the Devil. In the past, playing cards were referred to as the Deuce's prayer book, the Devil's playthings, or Old Scratch's picture book and gambling was considered to have a sinindex greater than that of dancing. The phrase originates in the Anglo-Saxon, Tiw, the Teutonic god of war. The phrase will also be easily recognized for its association with the Old French Deus. Deu or Deuce is a dialectic spelling conferring with the English deity, a god or goddess. The Celtic summer moon-goddess Samh is, of course, preserved in the Gaelic tongue as it is used in Cape Breton but I have heard my grandfather, Wesly Hanson Mackay, unwittingly refer to her in the mild expletive, "By The sam hill!", his favourite oath upon striking his finger with a hammer. He was also fond of the semi-rhetorical question, "What the sam hill?" He was unconsciously making reference to Samh, whose sacrificial fires were kindled on the highest hills of Scotland. Samh was a powerful figure among the Celtic gods. The moon-goddess of summer was a dual-natured creature who became Cailleach Bheur, the winter-hag. Her season as the summer goddess extended from May 1 until October 31 (known as samhradh, pronounced saurach). The celebration at the end of her reign was the samhainn, a name also applied to the month we call November. As Cailleach Bheur, the Winter-hag, Samh was responsible for the winter storms. She shape-changed back into the Samh with the renewal of summer on the eve of Beltane (May 1) after she threw her "hammer" (representing storm) beneath the mistletoe, thereby relinquishing her winter role. Summer in Gaelic is Samhradh, the riding out time of Samh. "Samhainn", November 1, the beginning of the Winter-hag's rein, was one of the rentpaying days of the sidhe. Gaelic imprecations like this are often difficult to understand as their origins are buried in a poetical metaphor or historic event. In the historic event category, we have: "May the crow's curse fall upon you!" Here, one has only to remember that the reviled Norse invaders sailed under the crow-banner. The Norse were also remembered in the phrase: "Die and give the crows blood-pudding." There are simpler curses, for example, "Hell's cure to you!" "May the Devil be your travelling companion!" and "May the grass grow before your door!" Their are mock-imprecations just as there are mock-oaths, thus: "The Devil gow it you and sixpence; then you'll never want money or company!" The Celts generally are still deft with oaths although Christian ones have often supplanted the older gods and spirits: "By the Holy Cross" or, "By the cross", is an authentic oath, but, "By Christ", is usually regarded as an effective curse. "By the Holy Cross" promises a considerable obligation, but the Gael knows how to empower it and subvert it. To make it more impressive he will accompany the words by crossing the forefingers of the two hands. If he wishes to lie he will multiply the number of crosses; thus: "I promise by the five crosses!" My great grandmother understood and applied these principles on occasion. If an Irishman or a Scot swears while crossing two sticks or two straws, he can be believed. But if he crosses his two hands, he fibs, all heat and apparent sincerity to the contrary.

Of course there were gifted individuals who took advantage of their power over others, sometimes combining a an oath with their direct look: "By the Deuce, I wouldn't mind having one of your pigs, perhaps the one with the tight curl in its tail!" Refusal was not advised as the pig could never bring profit to its rightful owner. Fraser said that people could not ignore the request "when a person with the evil-eye wished to buy (or beg) an animal..." Animals that were refused were invariably found to have a broken leg, stomach bloat or a fatal sickness. My greatgrandmother Mackay cautioned all her friends to say "God bless the beast", whenever anyone showed undue interest in a newborn animal. Witches possessed of the evil-eye had "plenty and full of everything" as no one refused their requests for animals, milk, food or tobacco. In a typical situation at Tracy, a witch-woman begged one animal from a new litter of piglets. Frank Butler's wife promised the animal when it was weaned but the farmer traded it away before the unwelcome visitor returned. She was livid at the sale of "her piglet" and allowed that the Butler sow was unlikely to live past Friday. Her pin-like eyes sparkled as she looked in the direction of the animal, which did not die of old age. As usually the evil-eye was applied to animals it seems likely, considering the greater sensitivity of animals to the supernatural, that people possessed of the evil-eye were able to contact their befind for assistance. My uncle Justin Stewart was a trickster and a roue who often took his filly from Second Falls to St. George to wager and race. On one return trip he encountered an old man seated on a veranda a mile north of the town. The man peered at him between two fingers, the traditional sign of the evil-eye. The animal stopped in its tracks and nothing Justin could do would force it beyond the gate guarding the old fellow's house. The young man had to retreat to the granitetown in a burst of loud and humiliating laughter. The evil eye was never restricted to farming communities. when Grand Mananers went to the interior of the island hunting small game they turned back if they encountered one thought to have the evil-eye. My grandfather Guptill said that his folk would never deal with the "hoodies," who were the jonahs of the mainland. If one of these arrived at the shore the packers broke off work for a smoke break and mariners refused to take to the water. They were very unwelcome at the launching of newly-built vessels since the craft always sprang a leak in the water or became stuck in mud. Justin Stewart's father was Edward Stewart, an enterprising blacksmith with irons in other fires, including a general store, a barber shop and a post office all located at Second Falls. In addition he operated a lumber sawing business and rented "The Hall" for theatricals and dances and to accommodate wood's-workers. His daughter Bessie Elizabeth, who was afterwards my grandmother, was postmistress at the Falls for about five years about the year 1910. The family was always in a good position to spy out the foibles of their community and keep track of "peculiar sorts". One of these was certainly Daddy Redcap, a sturdily built, grey-haired stranger with bad teeth, fiery red hair and eyes and talon-like fingers. He blew into town late one Friday night at the first of May, and set up a tent on the low meadow. He wore sturdy leather boots and carried a walking stick, and in every respect except size resembled the dangerous elf-men of southern Scotland who were sometimes called redcombs, bloody caps, dunters or poweries. Their occupation was robbery and they were reputed to stain their caps in human blood. Daddy

Redcap was nicknamed for his blood-red woollen toque. The first trouble came when this up-river man tried to buy a cow from a Bonny River farmer. The farmer refused the low offer and the witch-doctor went away with out saying anything. Shortly a white bumblebee was seen teasing the rump of this animal which afterwards refused to give milk. That April a very strange "guest" appeared uninvited at one of the weddings in the Hall. This creature had a tall, dunce-like cap that appeared to be made of straw. A mask was constructed of gunny-sack with eyes holes cut in it, the whole held in place by a rope tied about the throat. The visitor had a woven straw cape and straw projecting from its pant legs, and the neck and arms of its blue work shirt. Its entrance came at sundown, when the wedding and wedding feast were long past and the dancing to fiddle and piano had just begun. This straw-man never spoke but danced with men and women impartially ending with the bride and groom. In a half hour the figure had vanished in the darkness but it was thought to have been the witch-man, and the meaning of this visit was never resolved. Next there was trouble at the local grinding mill where the owner swore he saw a red-hatted disembodied head floating above the turning horizontal stones. There were numerous breakdowns in the wooden gears and levers that served the mill-stones and blood was found on the grain. A witch-doctor was consulted and he sat within the mill near the door, an opened Bible on a chair and a Bowie Knife in his right hand. At midnight, by candlelight the watcher saw a tiny cat's paw materialize through the latch-string on the door. He jumped up and cut at it with the knife but it quickly withdrew. The next morning few were surprised to learn that Daddy Redcap had travelled to St. George that night seeking medical help for a bad cut in one arm, sustained when he had fallen on his own axe. It is difficult to see why witches transferred their spirit to cats and other small animals since injury to these runners was automatically transferred to their resting bodies. In some quarters it was said that travelling spirits put their skin aside, projecting the remainder of their body into the familiar. The outer covering was always in danger of damage or loss and those who found witch-skins often salted them, leaving that part of their body permanently withered and crippled. Daddy Redcap soon moved on to Welsford where he met his match in a spirited woman who had some knowledge of the craft. Her husband was the first to see the Redcap's familiar as a black cat that suddenly entered his bedroom and lunged for his pillow. At the last moment he seized the creature by the tail and slammed it against a wall. It immediately vanished, but the next morning a new resident was added to the community a dishevelled red-haired man with a bandaged left arm. He calmly informed the couple that he was renting the house next to them and that he was a witch. The pair thought little of these events until the husband went into the woods for a winter of yarding lumber. When he came out for a visit, he found his wife bleary eyed and wasted looking. She said she had no useful sleep since his leaving and thought her neighbour might be the cause. "Every night, when I go to bed, " she explained, "a cat slides in through the door lock, and jumps on my breast. I can't dislodge it until dawn and its weight nearly suffocates me. When I leave the light on it stays away, but then I can't sleep!"

The couple decided to take action and the young man made a pretence of leaving his home, but returned through the woods and entered by a back door. Together they prepared for their ghostvisitor, tapping every potential exit in their little home but the door-lock. In the night, a cat materialized within the room and the husband jumped up to intercept it. It almost made it to the opening but the young man hammered a wooden splinter into it, at which their neighbour appeared nursing bruises on his forehead. He quickly agreed to leave off his visits and was escorted with a few boot assists to the door. THe witch did stay away, but Daddy Redcap turned his evil-eye on the family pig, which became ill and died. The lady knew just how to react, excising the heart from the dead animal and roasting it. She correctly assumed that some of the spirit of the red-headed man had to enter the pig to cause it harm. As this was still resident any damage to the heart, which was the former residence of the pig's spirit, would reflect on the witch. This was confirmed when Daddy Redcap appeared saying he needed help and would she kindly drive him to a doctor as he was suffering a life-threatening fever. She refused, not once, but three times and at last he died of a withering disease. When her husband asked if she was bothered about taking a life she quoted scripture: "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live!" Yet another trickster who possessed the evil-eye, when she so desired was Auld Howdie. Auld Howdie was the resident witch at Bocabec Cove and was a contemporary of my great-great grandfather Alexander: She was a woman of between forty and fifty in 1820, dressed in remnants, with her hair hanging in "elf-locks". Her feet were bound up in rags rather than fitted with shoes when she first appeared in Charlotte County. Holed objects represented the old sacred circle, so drilling a hole in a nutmeg and hanging it about the neck was thought useful against evil spirits. Keys which have circular openings in them were once hung out of sight under clothing for the same reason. Christians wore crosses for similar reasons. Auld Howdie actually displayed a cross as a part of her cursing-equipment. She carried a wooden cross at the end of a long staff and used it as the focus of a great attention-getting act. Auld Howdie would take up a place in the bushes near a local bridge and literally tumble off a bank when travellers approached. The heels went first over the head in four or five clown-like tumbles that ended with her bolt upright with her staff somehow before her. She would thrust this into the face of unsuspecting persons demanding that they: "Give alms to the glory of God!" The majority crossed her palm out of sheer shock and went on their way. To the few who brushed by, she screamed, "biadh an taifrionn", an evil curse that sometimes produced results. This business went on for only a short while for that road was not commonly travelled. She soon found a nearby home in a partially completed log cabin that had a door, but no windows, and no roof. A few nearby neighbours got together and repaired the collapsed roof but she prevented them from cutting window holes explaining that it would let in the draft. To light her darkness, they gave her a few tallow-candles, which she was never observed to used. In later years she told the farmers, who had given to her, that they had a very good flavour. She also received second-hand shoes and better clothing and was soon found to have skills as a midwife, hence the designation "howdie". Aul Howdie gathered several wild animals around her and took to smoking a pipe. Auld Howdie travelled the roads almost daily with a deer-hide pouch slung over one shoulder. She abandoned her cross, instead carrying a small wooden checker board under one arm,

challenging the unwary to a game played on wager. Auld Howdie's gaming was yet another form of magic. It has been largely forgotten that successful gaming and gambling were once considered magic, but in the past the gods were extensively into gaming. Before the Norse gods had even erected the walls of Asgard, their home, they set up something very like a horseshoe pit (and we'll bet a fiver they set wagers on the outcome of their games). Again, the Celtic god Lugh was known to be addicted to a board game, whose nature is no longer know. What we do know is that he did invent a series of moves, known as "clae an Lugh" (Lugh's enclosure), that was unbeatable. The Anglo-Saxons referred to the art as "gamencraeft" (their traditional game was backgammon). To them, to "gammon" meant to wheedle, cajole or distract the attention of a player so that he would lose the contest. Auld Howdie knew all the tricks and gammoned her way through most of the population of Saint Andrews, until few would play her. The old lady was never a trial to the few people who had first befriended her, and would not accept cash for midwifery or medical advice. She was always short of food and went "borrowing" whenever she felt the need. In the true Scot's tradition, she believed it was "better to give than receive", and was willing to allow her neighbours this advantage over her. However, she did draw the line on occasion, and she was not above cursing anybody who offended her. One of her neighbours became annoyed with two requests for milk and asked: "Why don't you go one for yourself instead of bothering me?" Auld Howdie took offense at this and the next day the man was on the way to his fields with his two oxen when he was met by a woman who looked like the witch. She was standing at some distance and was dressed entirely in white. She had an umbrella in her hand which she raised and pointed at an ox. Immediately that ox refused to go further in spite of the farmer's shouts, oaths and pleading. After a few minutes this oddly dressed person dropped her umbrella and laughed aloud, the ox immediately plunged forward dragging the other animal with it, stumbled fell and broke a leg. By the time the farmer recovered from attending this disaster, there was no sign of the witch anywhere near the road. After that incident, this farmer never had as much milk from his cows, and a passer-by reported he had seen Auld Howdie "milking" a glove which was hung from her doorframe. There were other ways for witches to gain almost anything they required; one countryman noted that: ... a witch can make herself invisible and pass through a keyhole and emerge again without noise. Doors and windows present no difficulty as she can pass through them. Witches seeking revenge could also ride the cattle and horses, leaving them lathered in sweat. A sure sign that animals had been bewitched was to find them wound about with a skein of black yarn. Some of the damage done to animals was inadvertent, thus a man at the St. Andrews crossroads found that his hens were delivering double yolked "witch eggs" or eggs that lacked any content. He immediately blamed the Auld Howdie saying that she had sucked the eggs in the night. Supposedly some of her spirit passed from the eggs to the hens which were now taken to be bewitched. The man went immediately to a witch doctor who provided him with a penned paper to pin inside his coat. As an extra precaution he placed dogwood crosses over the windows and doors of the henhouse and fitted it with sprays of rowanberry. The trouble immediately ceased.

In the meantime, Auld Howdie was gaining an increasing reputation for her impromptu performances: She claimed to possess "animal magnetism" and in one farm kitchen proved the point by standing a broom straw on end causing it to move in her direction or lean away from her with a gradual wave of the hand. When she carried her broom she could stand it on end and command it to take a few dance steps. People were not surprised to see the witch carrying a broomstick since it was believed that witches could not cross running water without one in hand. If Auld Howdie didn't happen to have her broom with her she could perform the same trick with a soup ladle or an axe-handle, provided it was not fitted with iron. She once activated five axe-handles at once causing them to go through a complex series of jumps, hops and leaps. She was even credited with raising a farmer's wagon to a height of two feet from the ground. Those who had not had dealings with Auld Howdie were advised not to lend to her as she needed some personal article or household goods in order to arrange a spell. In the worst situation, people reminded one another that witchcraft was ineffective in the face of disbelief, but there were few disbelievers in the '20s. Faced with a spell or curse, an individual might try to forget that he had opposition, for a spell had to be remembered to remain effective. If that was impossible, one might expect some hope from the fact that a spell could only remain active for seven years! It was a belief that the evil of witchcraft always reflected to some degree on the physique of the witch, and as this woman grew old it was seen that she suffered lameness in her left leg. Perhaps to relieve the pain she began manufacturing and drinking home-brew. An evangelist, who arrived in the community about this time, met her under full sail and immediately recognized the fact that she was possessed and decided to recover her spirit for the Lord. It is claimed that witches "would squeeze their father in bed" and worse still were committed "to bother whether they wanted or not!" In this case Auld Howdie wanted, and accepted the minister's invitation to his camp-meeting. Her shouting, tumbling and toppling was hardly noticed in the din of the first meeting she attended, but her breath scandalized most of those who were present. The minister was, however, intent on her reform and invited her to a series of private scriptural readings and prayers intending to exorcize her devils. For a time he appeared to have succeeded and even presented her to the congregation as a model of what "God's work" could do. Noticing one remaining trace of alcoholic aroma, the reverend invited Howdie to his private caravan for one last prayer. Seated in his armchair he invited the old crone to kneel on the floor in front of him while he talked out her last demon. He murmured something incomprehensible and then said, "Lift up your face, daughter!" At this she did as told, and later explained, "What I saw first was his nose, big, red, spotted with holes and invitin'". She seized it in both hands pulling the minister to the floor. Here he screamed aloud and the couple were joined by one of his aides and a stable-boy. Even then, Auld Howdie refused to withdraw her talons although his reverence begged for release while the others threatened. Having raped the nose, Auld Howdie released it, chuckled, and disappeared into the night. The next afternoon service saw the Reverend Howard presenting a bandaged nose. Auld Howdie went back to her hovel and continued as before. She was stiff walking the roads as the twentieth century neared, and it was said that she was more than one hundred years old. After this birthday she developed a lump between her eyes and some claimed this grew into a curled horn gaining about one-half inch per year. At a supposed age of 118 she died, without

notice, and was buried without fanfare. She went to ground without her deer-hide pouch which the neighbours examined, finding nothing more exciting than a few bones, a twisted coin and some black thread. After Auld Howdie's death horrendous noises began to be heard in the windowless camp, though nothing could be seen within. This poltergeist activity became so annoying, a group of neighbours gathered to torch the house. They piled the meagre furniture in the centre of the room and placed the magic-pouch on top. They had no sooner lit the fire than the pouch exploded into the air, vanishing upward through the chimney hole. After the house was burned to the ground, this container was found about a mile distant, completely undamaged by the incident. This an acquaintance buried near the grave of Auld Howdie. Those who have a knowledge of botany know that medicinal witch-craft had a plausible basis as long as it avoided entanglement with the idea of the magic of similarities: The herbs that bear the names of human or animal parts; liverwort, lungwort, eyebright, adder's tongue, hound's tongue, and dead man's cock, have all been involved with the theory that "like cures like". Amidst all the mumbo-jumbo, there were herbs that worked both for paying customers and against enemies or those targeted by the money of others. On our own property here in Sussex, there are three species of wild plant and several cultivated varieties which could be used to produce the effects that used to be seen in witchcraft. It is instructive that the common continental name for a witch was "venefica", or poisoner. Whether one intended to kill or cure, a few Christian or anti-Christian words or songs were always thought worth adding to the herb pot. In past times, the witch was never certain which was more potent, the spell or the extract. Some of our New Brunswick charms probably produced psychosomatic illness, a distinct possibility as long as the witch and her victim shared a belief in her powers. On the other hand, there were plants that could kill or cure, and these were commonly found in the carpet bag of the witch. It is a peculiarity of many killing drugs that they are curative in small quantities. Witches were not the only people who found henbane, foxglove and belladonna useful, these plants being equally known to apothecaries. Henbane is a sedative and sexual depressant. Foxglove which yields digitalis, a specific against some forms of heart ailment, was discovered by a Shropshire witch. Belladonna appears in many modern prescriptions, but was traditionally used to limit the muscular contractions of the womb when a miscarriage threatened. The witch undoubtedly had failures in her first experiments with drugs, but finally arrived at the correct dosage for killing or curing. What the white magician, midwife or "sage femme" used benevolently, the black magician abused. It was inevitable that both the "wise woman" and the malevolent witch were often embodied in one person. In the Middle Ages no distinction was made between the person who practised medicine and those who indulged in complex rites of devil worship, although the practical witch and the ritual witch had little in common. One mixture that had a definite effect was the "flying ointment" of the witch people. Essentially this was a combination of nightshade, aconite and persil in an animal fat. Nightshade yields belladonna, a poisonous alkaloid. The entire plant is very dangerous but the leaves and roots are nevertheless sought as the source of a mild narcotic. The properties of the plant are due to the presence of atropine, whose chief external effect is seen in a dilation of the pupils of the eye. Belladonna in sun-critical doses creates feelings of excitement and delirium. Aconite describes plants which contain the intensely poisonous alkaloid called aconitine. This substance, found in common monkshood, is a respiratory and cardiac sedative in low does. In high doses it is lethal, producing irregular heart beat and even heart-attack. Even small does might produce

palpitations and dizziness as well as a sense of treading water. "Persil" is an obsolete name for "parsley", but the witches probably used this word to identify the deadly hemlock which has a similar leaf structure. Before witches "flew" they took off their clothing and rubbed their entire body surface with these potent chemicals, afterwards flying away to sabats or do injury to others. The flying witch is no recent invention, the first case having been reported in 1324 when Dame Alice Kyteler was brought to trial. Investigators who searched her quarters came upon "a Pype of oyntment, wherewith she also greased a staff upon which she ambled through thick and thin." Three Spanish witches admitted "being borne through the clouds by devils from town to town sometimes travelling a hundred leagues in a day." There have been suggestions that witch flights were out-of-body experience brought on by the absorption of chemicals through the skin and by direct contact between these substances with the blood through scratches and cuts. This is supported by the fact that the bodies of witches were frequently seen at home when they were supposedly travelling. One of my family used to visit a "witch", and noticed that she often appeared drugged, as if operating on remote control. She was able to perform cooking and cleaning duties in this state, but her pupils were dilated and she rarely spoke. She once shouted out in pain and was thrown to the floor as if struck by a massive object. When she recovered, she said: "That fool Hiram ran into me by Troaks Hill!" Sure enough, when her husband rode in with his team he said that he had inadvertently run down her shade at that very location. She was unharmed by the incident but badly bruised on one side. On Grand Manan, witches rode the "guysbuck" in their flights through the air. This invisible creature was sometimes referred to as the "guytrash", and obviously corresponds with the runner or familiar of the witch. These are both obsolete words: A "guy" is a guide; secondarily a person of grotesque appearance. As a verb "guy" used to mean to depart in secret. A "buck" is any very young powerful male animal, the name being traditionally given to deer, antelope, rabbits, hares and goats. "Trash" as used above referred to a spectral dog. The story I have heard is not restricted to the island: At Billy Western Hill, northwest of St. Stephen a boy was sent to summer with his grandfather. The older man appeared tyrannical to the youngster and one afternoon when he was asked to cut wood the boy decided instead on a walk in the forest. He did not know the area and ended at dusk in completely unfamiliar territory. Although he did not know it, he soon came on the log home of the three Whyte sisters. As the boy was not backward, he knocked at the door and asked one of the three elderly widows if he could stay for the night. They said yes, and treated him with courtesy, feeding him and bedding him in the loft. About midnight, he awoke to hear them bustling about in the common room. Watching through a crack in the floor, the guest watched the three elders disrobe and cover themselves with something that smelled like bear grease. He next heard one of the "ladies" say softly: "Over and over, up and out!" and they all vanished from his sight. Puzzled, he crawled down the cut-log ladder to the ground floor, undressed and greased himself, repeating the short incantation. He had no sooner voiced the word, "...out!" when he found himself seated uncomfortably on the ridgepole of the house. Very soon, a mean-looking goat

creature appeared next to him indicating he should climb on his back. The lad was leery of this but finally accepted the ride. Before many air miles had been clocked, the air-demon discovered his passenger lacked the controlling spells and dumped him into the Saint Croix River just below Devil's Head. In the Grand Manan version, the lad stumbled on the home of Mother Coo, who went up the chimney on her broomstick. There she was arranging passage with her guysbuck, when she found the lad seated beside her. Amused more than annoyed with the appearance of this uninvited company, she wordlessly passed him a small red cap, which she motioned him to put on his head. When he did he was suddenly gusted away on the wind, following her on her invisible demon. They soon arrived at a shop door in Grand Harbour, and there shrunk to a size that allowed both to pass through the keyhole. Inside he watched aghast as the woman pulled the bung from the molasses keg and rummaged about upsetting flower and spilling things left and right. The old lady then exited, but the boy could not find his travel cap. Thus he was stranded until daylight when he had to make explanations to the store-owner. It is interesting to note that the broomstick was an accessory to, rather than the means of, flight. This magical device was used to transport magicians to and from the "flight-deck", where they were assisted by the guysbuck. Witches always had an eye for detail, which explains how a foreign broomstick could be used against them. One who wished to block a witch from entering had but to lay a broomstick across his threshold and she was bound to stay in place until she had counted every strand of fibre in the broom. As well as herbal lore the baobhs practised weather lore. Much of this lore was based on accurate and careful observation of the habits of nature: hence, on the mainland I was told that piles of leaves blown "wrong-side" up denoted rain. Everyone knows that night-crawling worms come to the surface just before rain, and that "the rooster crows for rain". Cats bend down their ears from sleeping on them just before a storm, and the clear sound of a trainwhistle looks to bad weather. It is also a local superstition that when potatoes boil dry, rain is in the works. Of course, this is now generally accepted as a true case of cause-and-effect, since water boils away more readily at low atmospheric pressure, and low pressure indicates that a storm may be expected. If a span of dry weather was expected my grandmother Mackay noted that the soot would remain on the inside of her woodstove covers. Before a storm she would call attention to the "British soldiers", troops of red sparks which seemed to move upward away from the draft. The herdsman had many of his own superstitions, for example the idea that drinking pools showed especially clear reflections just before a storm, and that grains of sand would float on water if a wet spell lay ahead. In Charlotte County they used to say that darkening skies followed after cattle licked one another about the neck and that animals who huddled together in the fields were another indicator. In Atlantic Canada there is a saying that people do a lot of talking about weather but rarely do anything about it, and this may be because there is usually ample rainfall. Local lore seems, certainly, to concentrate on weather prediction as opposed to altering the weather. Sages have said: "If you don't like the weather, wait a spell!" No other region of North America is likely to see a seventy degree drop in temperature, sunshine, rain, hail and snow within one ten hour

period, as we observed at one outdoor auction. If you do insist on having rain this can be obtained by crushing a spider. The cry of the loon, which we used to suspect indicated his arthritis was kicking up, was known to suggest that the charm of wetting or crushing had been effective. Much of the weather lore was aided by verses which helped to stick useful observations in the baobhs mind. There is too much of this sort of weather lore to be comprehensive, so I'll conclude with a collection of couplets, which my mother liked to recite: Fog on the hill Water at the mill; But fog in the hollow A fine day will follow. Sunshine with shower Won't last half an hour. Wet and cold May, Means a barn full of hay. A leaky June, Makes farmers sing a merry tune. Mare's tail and mackerel sky, Means the sun will surely die. These are traditional memory joggers, many centuries old, particularly favoured by witches and others whose illiteracy forced them to carry large chunks of information in their heads. Just as some witchcraft was as simple as weather lore, so not all witches, or baobhs, were quite so dramatic as Mother Coo. Most were simply outcasts who lived on the fringe of respectable society. When I was seven years of age, the Second World War had been going on for a little more than a year, and my town of Saint Stephen, N.B. was beginning to emerge from the Victorian period. We had streetlights along major thoroughfares, which were by then, "macadamized". Our system of electrical trams, which ran on overhead wires, had been eliminated in the pre-war decade, and the rails removed from the middle of the street. On the other hand, adults were employed in some quaint old factories, The Surprise Soap Company, a woollen mill, a cotton mill, an axe factory, and Ganong's Candy Factory (which is the only survivor from those days). Across the street from the soap factory was the Canadian Pacific railway station, which has since been converted into a library. The streets had been full of automobile traffic in the decades before the war, but gas rationing created a renewed interest in horses, and in my day the town had seven blacksmith shops. There were other peculiarities: an ocean-ferry terminus on Water Street, a full-fledged lumbermilling operation within the boundaries, and fleet of masted schooners anchored at the Sadler Wells wharf where they discharged coal from Pennsylvania.

On a more personal level, the centre and bane of my existence was Mark's Street School, a very Victorian pile, now incorporated into a larger "complex". Those were pre-atomic, pre-television days, when most children were entertained on Saturdays for ten cents at the local movie theatre. Lacking cash, they might tune in the scratchy sounds of weekend radio. Adults did not then feel it their duty to entertain children, which left most of us gloriously alone in planning our days. The "wonder-drugs" had not been discovered at that time, and each summer was full of medical hazards. Periodically there were local plagues of whooping cough, chickenpox, and diptheria, and with almost every warm season one or two classmates fell victim to tuberculosis or poliomyelitus. The fear of communicable diseases led to some wonderful bonfires. When a neighbour on Queen Street died of tuberculosis all of his personal possessions, as well as the furniture in his sick-room, was carted into the centre of a vacant field and torched. As children we were allowed to watch the burning dressers and bedstead, but from a distance of about a thousand feet. The Health Department made sporadic efforts to explain the causes of disease in leaflets sent home from the school, but I remember neighbours who continued to attribute such "blighting" to swamp gases, the "chill", or even witchcraft. I might not have met the Witch of Oak Bay, except for the fact that adults were agreed that polio and TB, the most feared plagues, were transmitted in movie theatres, at circuses and fairs, and through fresh water swimming. When vacation season commenced in the last week of June, every effort was made to ship women and children off to a more protected place. At that time, most people who were urban dwellers had relatives living in the country, and it was simply a matter of doubling up for July and August. This was our situation, but the family farm was sixty miles distant at Second Falls, and the route along Highway #l was dusty and unpaved. Menfolk could only rejoin their families on Sundays since their working week typically ended at nine o'clock on Saturday evening. This was made difficult by the fact that "correct" socialbusiness behaviour demanded attendance at the eleven o'clock church service. Those who could afford to rented or purchased shore property on the salt water, which was only few miles east of town. There, a number of families lived in tents which were set up for the sum-mer months, replacing them with rudimentary cabins as they could afford the cost. In our case, we were the first people to rent land from the Church of England Church at Blackhall's Beach. That religious denomination had once had a monopoly on religion in New Brunswick and had been given large grants of land including a parcel at Oak Bay. When the towns were very small, and the causes of disease totally unknown, the Beach was only used for the once yearly Sunday School outing. In the 1920's a tiny mess-hall was built in the only waterfront clearing under a massive birch tree. My grandfather was able to rent this place from the diocese, except for the weekend of the picnic. My mother, my grandmother and I lived here for a number of seasons until the Hitchcocks negotiated a ninety-nine year lease in the woods at the opposite side of the clearing and built a cottage. Following this lead, my grandparent made a similar arrangement and family members built a four-room shell on a lot further south in the deep woods. Before the war had ended there were at least a dozen cottages overlooking that part of Oak Bay. There was no electricity, and thus no lights or radio at Oak Bay, but the adult cottagers and the growing population of summer children was always busy and well entertained. In those days, the fall was filled with amateur theatricals and the actresses and actors were available for impromptu summer evening hoe-downs and clam-bake sing-songs. An occasional visitor to

these affairs was a woman from "the next beach", who the cottagers did not address by name but treated with deference. I wouldn't use this woman's name, if I knew it, but in fact adults of that time felt that children should operate on a "need to know" basis, and we were never introduced. Several older children said they had heard her called Lily White, but I'm certain this was a nickname. As a teen-ager, I was informed that "Lily" had once been a dues-paying member of a very old profession and that "Lily White" was not a name used to her face. According to hear-say this unlikely elderly woman with the peculiar accent had once lived in Ireland. My respondent said his father had told him that she was "a bedeviled woman from the county of Limerick". Apparently, the man had been asked for money, "for the glory of God!" and reponed: "Really, I doubt that it would assist God if I were to give you a hand-out." "Not a hand-out, but my due! I'm not to get it? Then Biadh an taifrionn! But wait, one more chance; will you give it?" "Well, perhaps!" suggested the man, "but what puts you in this need?" "A woman, somewhat like myself, said a charm over me for not giving her alms. That same prayer I keep now at my tongue's end and will give to you unless you help me. For your sake, honey, give me a coin and let us both be on our way." "Perhaps I will, but first tell me something of your past?" "Will you use me decently if I do?" "The amount you will have to trust to my judgement. I shall give what I think fit." "Well", said Lily, "From the look of ye, I know ye to be an Irishman from a half mile off, so I'll tell some of it. Twenty years ago instead of being a bedivilled woman, wanderin' the world, I was a respectible resident on the auld sod. I had been left an aisy rint of a little farm, horses, pigs, cows, and two fine sons. I was always a charitable woman, giving to the cripples and other unfortunates who came by my door. Usually I would answer cries of "Ave Maria!" or "In the name of God!" with a measure of meal from a cullander. One morning their came to me an unfortunate wandererer, then a far cake (fear caoch; blind man), a dark man led by a gossoon, then an individual with no trouble in the world, a bacah on crutches, a woman with a white swelling, and after her a simpley, and then somebody else as much afflicted. It seemed to me at the time that all the alms-seekers in Limerick had conspired against my supply of meal, for at last every measure was emptied." "I said to the colleen: "What shall I do if more show up before the boys return from the ballybetagh?" Says she, "Is there not something else you might give?" "Nay", said I, "to give coins would attract others, and I would soon give all I have; there have been thirteen of them already." I had scarcely said this than a half-naked woman placed herself right before the door, and demanded, "Give me what you have for the glory of God!"

I tried to explain my position, but she demanded coin when I said I had no meal. Finally after a loud quarrel in a voice which might have been heard to Londonderry she half whispered: "Blaidh an taifrionn gan sholas duit a bhean shalach!" Turning from the door she went away on long strides. Now tell me honey, do you know the meaning of that tongue? You do not? They are "May the Mass never comfort ye, ye dirty quean!" "Ochone, that's the meaning, sure enough. Stunned by the curse, I sent the colleen running after the baobh to ask her to come back and cross that prayer to take the venom out of it. The divil woman refused, telling my girl that if she persisted she would give her something in memory. I remained that day sitting on a stool speechless, wishing I had given the woman everything I possessed." "When my sons returned and learned of this misfortune they said such things as, "Come mother, get up and help us unload! Never mind that carrion crow. Curses are nonsense!" Well I got up and did as they asked, cooked a bit and sat with them and tried to be merry, but truthfully thought I was not the woman I had been." "The next day, put off by what had happened I turned away all the bacahs and liprous women and dark men, divil an alms did I give them, with no care for their grumbling and cursing. Worrying on the curse, knowing I was blighted in this world and the next, I ceased to pay any heed to the farming business, or the house. I then took to drink, inducing my eldest son to do the same. My youngest son did not follow but often begged the two of us to leave off. Soon the rint was unpaid, every peeny being consumed. After that my youngster bade us farewell and went to list for a sodger. As my temper went sour I began to fling scalding water and curses over any misfortunate who dared come near my door. More damaging was my misconduct at mass, for when the holy corpus was raised aloft, I would shout horrah and fall down upon the floor. My scandalized neighbours then took me by the shoulders and turned me out of doors, and began to talk of ducking me in the bog. The parish priest took my part, saying I ought not to be persecuted but sobered up and exorcized of the demon rum." "Having set himself to this purpose, Father Hogan took me to his house, read scripture over me, and sprinkled holy water. A very larned man was the Father, and a portly good-looking man except for his large red nose. In my drunken stupors, I often regarded that nose, thinking perhaps he had got it by making free with my divil-cratur in secret. When the divil was upon me, I often felt an inclination to seize upon it to see if it was as fiery and spongey as it looked. I resisted and cut back on the drink until the Father said he would soon present me to the congregation as a reformed creature. Five times the week before Sunday, I went to the priest's house, to have the last of the divil's cast out, and finally met with him in full canonicals, seated in his aisy chair. "Daughter", he sai, "the worst is over. Now kneel before me and at the sign of the cross you will be free!" So I put myself before his reverance while he muttered to himself in either Latin or Shanna Gailey (Gaelic). Finally he said, "Look me in the face, daughter!" When I did, I saw nothing beyond his large, red, inviting nose, and befiore he could make the cross, I sprung at it. Oh the yell he gave! I did not leave off my hold, but pulled at that nose until his reverance fell upon me on the floor. At his scream, the housemade came along with a young lad from the village. Although Father Hogan begged them, in the Virgin's Name, to

separate him from this demon, they had difficulty getting my fore-finger and thumb from that hot and inctious place. On his feet the reverand made for his horsewhip, and I for the door. That Sunday, the people at chapel saw instead of a purified and holy female, a bandaged nose, which created laughter until the priest appealed to the consciences of his people. Later in the day, some of the parishoners overtook my son by the way. Finding him intoxicated, they bate him leaving him senseless on the ground, and might have used me worse. Although a little intoxicated, I escaped back of the house into the bog, where I hid in a copse of hazels. The people did mistrait some of my dumb beasts and might have destroyed property, except that would have damaged the landlord rather than me. In the dead of night, I crawled home to find my son passed out on the floor covered with blood and bruises. We were not long there before the owner of the house came to evict us. Myself and my son wandered an hour or two, then falling into quarrel, we parted, he going one way and I another. Later I heard he was transported to the colonies. As for me I took what work I could and a leaf from the book of the woman who caused my ruin. From there, I have come to this place. Now ye have heard the story, what about coin? "Would you consider a dollar sufficient?" "Indeed. Give me that and I will say a decent prayer for you?" "A blessing?" "I cannot. Those who are bedivilled have no blessing to give." "Then here is a nickel, go in peace!" I do not know the outcome of this exchange, but my friend's father continued to live without blight for a number of years after. Lily White moved into an abandoned boat-house on the road to a peninsula, which was made an island by most of the higher tides at Oak Bay. Some of the local children, as opposed to the summer crowd, were certain that Lily was a witch, although it seems unlikely she deserved the reputation. When I first stumbled upon her on a beach walk, she seemed to me a tall woman of very advanced age, although I now suspect she may have been little more than fifty. She had grey hair spotted with red and was lantern-jawed, with skin the colour and texture of a plucked turkey. The lady never married, and in her old age rarely entertained friends. Her patch-work home was placed on a knoll just north of a place on the coast where two fresh water streams met. That alone would have damned her as a witch in the fourteenth century, but she had the god luck to be born into superstitious rather than blood-thirsty times. Her ten hens and a rooster pecked at wild grass and slipped from place to place on her black shale beach. From time to time she kept a tethered pig, and in the summer tended a very small vegetable garden. The nearest farm kept sheep, and she apparently traded eggs for wool, which she carded and spun, knitting socks and mittens, which sold to both summer and winter neighbours. Her neighbours, generally more charitable than their medieval counterparts, sometimes drove down the bar road to enquire about her or help her repair her place, plough her land, or cut the

wood needed for winter. A young girl walked down from the head of the Bay on Saturdays to help her with the baking, and she was regularly given milk, butter, bread, and meat, along with second-hand clothing. I'm not certain that her "history" was authentic, but she did understand the principle that giving benefits the giver more than the receiver, and was always willing to ask for anything she needed. She never thanked any of her patrons for money or gifts, which she considered her due for her unquestioned contributions to community life. The interior of the boat-house, which had once been part of a completely decayed estate, was insulated with Eaton's catalogues and magazines, which were fanned open and tacked between the studs. Layers of cardboard covered this, and these interior "walls" were papered with centre sections from the Standard or the Weekly Star. Lily could neither read nor write but was very much attracted to comic strips, which were pasted on the cardboard ceiling as well as the walls. Boat-houses have no floors, and about a fifth of the interior was given over to a ramshackle rowboat which she occasionally dragged down to the water. Some of the space above the boat well had been floored with rough lumber donated by a neighbour. Inside was a wood-burning stone, a woodbox filled with drift-wood, a table and two chairs, an iron bed with brass finials, and numerous boxes, largely filled with comic books. If Lily was a witch her curses were not taken seriously and children were not warned to avoid her part of the coast. Young boys from the surrounding farms often appeared hoping to trade comics, but were usually enticed into hauling water or cutting wood in exchange for a few hours reading the walls or perusing a small part of her collection, which included U.S. publications of pre-war vintage. When the war was first fought, the Americans were neutral and Batman and Captain America were prohibited from entry into Canada. In 1941, the Canadian publishers tried to fill the gap with Captain Canuck, Nirvana of the Northern Lights and other Canadian heroes, but these were never popular and Lily's horde was much appreciated. In spite of her isolation, the lady tried to attend every social function from weddings, through the beach parties we used to call frolics, to funerals. It was unnecessary to invite her, and she was never resented since she was an able singer although not much of a dancer. She did, however, clap out time for the fiddle, banjo, and accordion players and could tilt a bottle with the best of them. Her colour might be unhealthy, but it was often ruddy, and it was obvious that she enjoyed life. Lily was not usually vocal except when provoked to comment on the intimate affairs of the people who lived around the Bay. She made it a business to know what they were about and was always ready to direct a curse at anyone who deliberately baited or contradicted her. She knew how to make love-sick youngsters, or oldsters, blush at completed or planned indiscretions. Leaving a company she invariably invited some young stud to accompany her to the bushes, but her offer was always refused. As I was very young when Lily was at her best, her humour was incomprehensible to me, and I actually had little direct contact with her. When I did stop to pet her cat or chase the hens, we afterwards sat on a large log while she talked of weather, animal, and crop-lore. None of this made any impression except the jingle she insisted on repeating: If you're an honest little boy Which I take you for to be.

You will not laugh or smile, When I tickle you on the knee. In those days boys wore shorts until the age of thirteen, and I was enormously ticklish, so this usually ended the interview. I was annoyed at this behaviour, but was scared away from this part of the Bay by a natural happening rather than witchcraft. If I had known that Lily was "bedeviled" I might have taken what I saw more seriously. The weather had been grey, overcast, a full of afternoon thundershowers for a number of days. That particular morning, it had rained and then stopped just before noon. The cottage had been plagued with mosquitoes and blackflies and the family were at odds, so I took the break in rain to walk around the point past Sharkey Clarke's tent. This put me in sight of a minor inlet which had a brook as one source. Even when the tide was low, this had to be forded to follow the shore to Lily White's place, which was one reason for remaining largely on Blackhall's Beach. Miss White's cat had strayed that day and I gathered her up, sat on a rock and petted her for some time before deciding that the dinner hour must be close. Putting the animal down I started home keeping a close eye on clouds which seemed abnormally low and still soggy with rain. Halfway back to the point a fireball erupted out of the clouds and spitting sound and rainbow colours drifted slowly towards the surface of the water. Seven year olds are not much at judging size, but at the time it seemed huge. Six inches from the surface the turbulent spitting ball of energy discharged to the water with a thundering clap, and vanished leaving a smell of sulphur in the air. By coincidence, the "witch-lady" disappeared from the Bay at this time. That winter her hut was carried away by an especially high run of tide and ice. The next summer a family from Maine moved onto the property and constructed a cottage on the old foundation. Several summers later they constructed a steel reinforced concrete swimming pool on the beach, but it was no less ephemeral that the Lily's home, and was broken up by ice-wedging that winter. The only other thing I can remember of this unusual lady was her fight with a neighbourhood dog, which made an occasional show of attacking her hens. He was actually a lap dog, incapable of any damage, but he did ruffle some feathers and brought Lily running with slingshot and curses. The dog was good at dodging stones and returned often for the exercise. My grandfather told me that this Old Girl said she was wealthy. When she first arrived at the Bay, Lily claimed to have found gold on her property, but for some reason failed to exploit it. She said that the "sidhe" (fairies) were always filling their purses in a gulch, just back of the beach, and feared they would deplete it before she could stake a claim. Sometimes she was heard standing in the woods shouting Gaelic curses at these thieving creatures. Picking up on this peculiarity some of the neighbourhood boys used to make scrabbling noises and lead her on a chase until it was discovered that she was not entirely lacking as slingshot markswoman. Near the end of the war, my grandfather promised that a row-boat would be built for me if my grades were good. I came second to Claire Douglas, but that was good enough for the reward. In seeking a name for this fourteen foot liner, I came up with "White Rock" after a seeing a liquor ad in an American publication. I wanted to paint the accompanying fairy of white rock on the bow, but my grandmother thought this bare-breasted female was indecent, and the name improper for a grandson of a founder of the local White Ribbon Society. Looking for another name which might suit a teetotaller, I suggested "Lily White"? My grandmother was even more offended, but my grandfather thought this was enormously funny, and the boat was christened

with this name. Auld Lily's eccentricities would have cost her life during the Middle Ages, but living in our century she was tolerated and perhaps admired by some people. Clearly, she represents some of what has passed for witchcraft in Atlantic Canada. Lily White represents one modern view of what witchcraft was. In fable the witch always lived apart from the community in a place which was lonely and secluded, whether the seashore or a small cottage in the deep woods. Here, she knitted and spun, the professions of fairies, and the Fates, as well as witches. She was, according to Arne Runeberg, a "spider-woman" a man- eater, who led them into dark sexual acts and cannibalized their children. Gillian Tindall thinks that older women were preferred scapegoats because men felt free to attack women who had little sexual allure, exercising sexual resentment where they knew her "magic" was bound by old age. Common people also persecuted these vulnerable individuals because they resented the charity they received. Even younger women failed to support their elders seeing them as the past, and representatives of their own future. These are not discharged points of view. Among primitives there are still many ruthless ways of dealing with the old, from eating them to abandoning them by their own consent. "Civilized" reactions are less overt, but in the West the old are not seen as containing the wisdom of the race. Now that it is less acceptable to persecute the elderly and eccentric people have had to seek other outlets. Some have turned to sympathetic magic. As a maker of drawings I have had to regard the strong emotions they are able to arouse. Individuals who react in a sexual way to nude illustrations, and wish them banned, are clear victims of sympathetic magic. In Victorian times, our ancestors might make rude drawings of enemies and mutilate them in order to injure by imitation. Fishermen of my part of the Bay of Fundy used to pin such images to a wharf piling and fire buck-shot at it, an act at once satisfying and less dangerous than assault even if it failed in its major purpose. According to some, if a portion of shot happened to put out the eye of the image, the witch would suffer the same fate, and the poor fishing would cease. Although the majority of witches were undoubtably eccentrics, like Auld Howdie and Lily White some people still clearly believe that witches are not harmless. I have heard it seriously suggested that one might acquire another man's cream through his own heard by picking webs of dew at dawn. Other believed witches to have purloined milk by sucking on a straw driven into a potato. They said that the proper incantations allowed them to sympathetically suck milk directly from the udder of a distant pastured cow. It seems that most witches were more likely tricksters adept at avoiding being seen or heard. For example, while witches could pass "invisibly" to and from a barn to steal a pail of milk, they had to materialize to milk the cow, and were often caught in the act. At the approach of a farmer most witches bolted and flew out a window unless they were caught by the first rays of dawn, in which case they might be captured. Trickery is the simplest form of wonder work. The word trick is perhaps derived from the Low Germen "trekken" which indicates "to draw or pull back". An example would be the pulling back of the elastic on a slingshot, or the string of a bow. In each case, the word assumes a kinetic state, and the English word trigger is based on this noun. When the cross-bow was developed, it represented the height of trickery for the time; requiring dexterity in the use of "magical" screws and levers. Anything which was a bit beyond the skills of ordinary men came to be called a "trick". The idea behind trickery is to deceive with dexterity and no apparent

effort. It would seem that the art of trickery in this form is alive and well. My wife and I once carried on an antique business at Sus-sex where we encountered a consummate trickster. This man was one of a host of travelling dealers who supply retailers with stock in trade. These are referred to as "pickers" since they usually pry away the "pick" of each dealers stock; obtaining it through the trickery of a suave appearance combined with a believable hard luck story. This particular picker purchased stock in the Maritime Provinces, paid the dealers there with cheques written on an empty account, and then sold furiously in New England, banking the money he received before the cheques bounced. He then bought in New England, and sold in Quebec on this same basis. Finally he purchased antiques in Quebec and brought them to New Brunswick for resale. The premise of this business was always shaky as the cost of travel was high and trade depended on the honesty of the dealers. The trickster was finally caught at his own act when he received a bad cheque from a Quebec dealer and cheques bounced in all three areas of the north-east. He fled this temporary embarrassment, but his good-humour and ingratiating ways meant that he had few permanent enemies and he later returned to Nova Scotia to manage a catering firm. Many old customs survived the passage to the New World, albeit in diluted form. Those which survived were probably the ones which had originally been the strongest in their original form. The Devil is frequently referred to in the Maritime oaths, but his strength must have been considerable for he has even been known to make appearances, albeit in reduced form. It is obvious that the Devil was one of the non-Christian gods who was overthrown when Christianity rose to power. The word devil seems to have originated in the Anglo Saxon Deu or Tiw, the reincarnate god of war; the Anglo Saxon word deoful means full of deo or god-spirit. In the Christian and Judaic view, the Devil was the supreme spirit of evil and unrighteousness, the tempter, and enemy, of mankind. In the first English versions of the Bible the Devil was represented using the Greek word "Satan", which means the "the adversary". Satan is represented in the Jewish Talmud as a former angel of Jehovah cast out of a high post because of his pride and disobedience. The Devil is still represented as the leader of all the apostate angels and as the ruler of an underground place of punishment sometimes given as Hades and in other places as Hell (after the Norse goddess of death). In later versions of the Bible "Devil" was substituted for Satan, the latter being cited as a synonym for "slanderer". In the Middle Ages it was generally agreed that the Devil was subservient to God and only able to act by his sufferance. This Biblical name for the most important opponent of God passed into poetry and popular myth. Devil became the general name used to describe local pagan gods after their partial subjugation to the Christian God. This became a synonym for a much broader group of destroyer-gods including the Roman Janus, the Norse god Loki, the Hebrew Satan, the eastern djinn and the Indian Shiva. Other names more or less identified with this character have included Beelzebub (Lord of Flies), Appolyon, and Lucifer, although less formal names as: Arch Enemy, Arch Fiend, Old Nick, Auld Clootie, and Old Man or Old Boy have sufficed from time to time. Devil, when the word is uncapitalized it is understood that a lesser demon, or even an evil human, is identified.

In the Victorian period the title was allowed literary hacks, junior legal counsels working without pay and journeymen printers. Aside from oaths, this name was taken to describe any cookery which used Cayenne peppers, any machine used for tearing, shredding or grinding, instruments for maliciously cutting fishermen's nets at sea, devices which were able to unload grain and machines used to cut wooden screws. In current parlance "devil" is also used for more everyday items, although usually a hint of the original meaning of the word is still suggested: The devil's egg is polite parlance for "whore's egg", descriptive of Echinarachnius parma, also known as the sea urchin. This is an ovoid slightly flattened echinoderm having a body entirely covered with sharp spines. Broken off within the human body, these spines become a locus of infection and sometimes wander through the tissues for several years before emerging. The devil's matches or bear's matches, identifies the bright red nodules of Cladonia cristatella, a lichen that grows on rotting logs and decaying stumps. The devil's matches are said to be phosphorescent at certain phases of the moon, when they may be approached to foretell the future. The devil's paint brush is the hawkweed, Hieracium aurantiacum, an undesirable weed which can choke out hay. It has a bright orange flower and has been termed the devil's carpet where it appears in quantity. The devil's darning-needle is the dragonfly. It was once held that those who fell asleep within a dragonfly's reach might awake to find their lips sewn together, or their fingers or toes magically bound. The devil's prayer book, devil's playthings, devil's gallery, or devil's picture-book, all refer to playing cards. Our self-disciplined ancestors had little room for "useless" activities especially where they were accompanied by gambling. Sunday "going's on" were tightly controlled by the older generations, who allowed the reading of reading of religious tracts and very little more. The Devil's reduced forms include all the various horned-war-sun-agricultural deities of European mythology and it was from them that he inherited most of his physical characteristics: He was black or very heavily tanned, he had horns, his skin was leathery and hairy, his feet cloven hoofs, his ears pig or goat-like. He possessed a tail (sometimes forked), fiery eyes, a sulphurous smell and a large, cold, permanently erect penis and was said to be able to assume any form at will. The Hebrew "satan" of the Old Testament has been identified by translators with the Devil, but some versions have translated the word as the more descriptive "he-goat, satyr", or "demon" suggesting his original fertility role. He was reincarnate. In ancient times the Devil must have been as busy as Santa Claus, whipping from one fire festival to another where he served as the central celebrant in fertility rites. In practice he was undoubtedly numerous ordinary men dressed in an animal pelts, magically transformed for their night as a god-king. In the sexual department, the Devil was said to be "abler than any man" but those who lay with him noted that he was, "a meikle (large), black, rough man, very cold...very cold, as ice." He sometimes took the form of a woman to seduce men and "some authorities held that he could alter the sexual part of himself at will to cater to either sex." In the medieval period, these "devils" were the leaders of collections of boabhs or witches. One might think it dangerous to view the Devil incarnate, but there is a saying, "See the Devil in this world and you'll miss him in the next!"

Those who wish to make his acquaintance are advised to look in a mirror aimed over the left shoulder at midnight on Christmas Eve. For others the Devil has chosen to show himself whether they like it or not! Kate Foster provided room and board for lumbermen working for the St. Stephen lumber-lord William Todd. I.C. Woods was Todd's camp boss, a strong personality but not as striking as one of five men hired in Calais just after Christmas. All those involved should have suspected trouble when the new man introduced himself as Mr. Smith. The aliases Smith, White and Fisher are always to be suspect for reasons already discussed. Notwithstanding the new man and the others headed for the Thomas Stream stopping at noon with Auntie Kate Fisher, who fed them and arranged to provide for their horses. The tall, dark slim man in the new crew caught Kate's attention, but she said nothing. When they were gone she found a $20 gold piece had been left under Smith's plate. This was a small fortune in those pre twentieth century days but she never tried to spend it knowing the traditions respecting the devil's gold. If the gold was not counterfeit it was likely to dissolve in embers and smoke on being spent. Worse there have been cases where the gold disassembled into its original forms: cat's claws, bear's nails, toad's feet and other curiosities which will; remain unnamed. All this is an aside; the point is Mr. Smith took employment on the Stream and proved a very able worker. Unfortunately, the forty-four horse in camp were mysteriously untied each night he was in camp. Further they acted as if he were "The Horseman"; milling and neighing, kicking and bucking their harness-men and drivers as long as Smith stood nearby. Although there were marks in the snow to show that Smith had loosened the horses, the camp-boss decided he was, at least, a crossed man. He therefore paid him off and Smith retreated back down the road to Calais. Strangely the men who were coming in that night saw nothing of him and his footprints were absent from the freshly fallen snow. Smoky Joe, the little man of the Kilmarnock Woods was the subject of a very similar story: This strange interloper arrived at a lumber-camp with a strange tale of having served as a soldier in Oliver Cromwell's army three centuries before. The men dismissed this but not the knocky boh activity that came with him. Horses halter came suddenly unbuckled without cause, harness broke and fell to the ground and again the horses became wary and unmanageable. Again, Joe was given his "walking papers" and walked off through a snow that left no footprints. In any case, Kate kept the money through a long life but it was claimed she was never as pious as she had been before feeding the devil. She perhaps had cause to believe in personal salvation if the old saw is true that "Those who see the devil in this world will not find his like in the next!" I hope this is the case for ten tears ago, during the summer, my antiquarian book-store was once visited by a classically dressed devil accompanied by a dwarf sidekick. It is well known that the Devil creates a good deal of dissention through the printed word, thus his interest in bookstores and magazine shops. The gentleman who visited our shop was not eight feet tall, but he was certainly thin, saturnine, and of dark complexion, perhaps thirty years of age and dressed entirely in black. He was hatless but did affect a red-lined cape and was accompanied by a little man, whose physical deformities classed him as a dwarf rather than an elf or fairy. The taller man was well-spoken and seemed genteel while the little man moved in "hop-toad" fashion and said

nothing which did not reinforce the statements and attitudes of his big companion. They were looking for books having to do with the occult. This material was uncommon in our town (population 4,200) but by strange chance I had just purchased books from the estate of a prominent Mason and these included an early work, Judge Holme's treatise on seances. This I sold to the happy customer for forty dollars. In that same month there was an upset among students on the campus at the Sussex Wesleyan College. A bible student reported meeting this same individual at the local new book-store in one of the malls, examining the girlie publications. I might have rejected this sighting as an effect or religious fervour, but for the gentleman's later visit to our own antiquarian bookstore. The devil's obsession for reading is understandable in the light of what has been said about the magic of the printed word? Men who read have always been of interest to the devil as the following Acadian tale makes clear: The new schoolmaster at colonial Cocagne was preparing for a new day when a knock came at the door and an old man pushed his way into the room bearing a huge black covered book. "Here, this book is yours, my son. Read it carefully for it is a key to great power." Before the school master could say anything the stranger backed out the door and was gone. In privacy the teacher began to examine the book which had white printing on jet black pages. He had never seen the language before but it was phonetic and appeared readable when the words were sounded. After he had read one paragraph another knock came at the door. This time he was confronted with a tall dark man dressed in black. His eyes glowed like coals and he smiled while saying: "You have called master? What do you wish of me?" Immediately, the schoolteacher knew that he had been given a grimoire, "Les Livres d'Albert" or "Les livres de la Dones". Realizing this he made the sign of an outward cross at which the devil departed on an infernal wind. He immediately burned the book and had no further visits from the netherworld. The chief sins of our ancestors revolved around drinking, dancing, illicit sex, and swearing. One, or more, of these elements was usually involved in the damnation of men and women. The usual tales of devilish derring-do took place in community dance halls, and the myths are very consistent from one place to another. Our local "dens of iniquity" in Charlotte County included "The Green Lantern" at Waweig, "The Crystal Palace" on the Bay Road, and the informally titled "Bucket of Blood", which described either the dance hall at Rollingdam or another on the road between St. Stephen to Fredericton. Frankly, I can't recall which place was associated with the following stories, but all were reasonable settings, places of booze, sex and brawling. No wonder that the "Bucket of Blood" acquired a bad reputation after their square dance fiddler failed to show and the hall manager swore that he would find a replacement if he had to em-ploy the Old Boy himself. A fiddler did appear within minutes but when he left the hall his cloven footprints were found burned into the stage-boards and these could never be sanded or planed away. When I was a lad "old men", such as my grandfather, used to gather in summer and winter within a back room of the Queen Hotel. One night they were joined by a tall, dark thin stranger of indeterminate age. Eventually someone asked him to join the game and the stranger showed a great ability at poker. He didn't take away particularly big pots but won a bit from every

person in turn. This seemed a little more than usual luck so amidst protests the game broke up. In the pay-off one man dropped some bills from the poker table and leaned to the floor to get them back. It was then that the room was made aware of the fact that their visitor had horse hoofs rather than ordinary feet. The card party was at an end! I think that the Green Lantern was the scene of the most spectacular devil tale: A girl at Rollingdam had been stood up for the Saturday night dance in her home village. When her mother found her crying she asked what had become of Ralph, she replied: "I couldn't care less! If the devil would call I'd gladly go with him to Waweig!" Her mother was shocked at the response and sent her to bed, but relented when a tall dark stranger came calling in a 1939 Ford roadster with white, yellow and red flames painted on the sides. Although the mother didn't care for the auto she was drawn to the boys's good manners and the fact he assured her that he was "an old friend" of her daughter. THe young girl did nothing to dissuade her mother of the idea and travelled with the stranger to the Lantern, where she knew she would be the centre of good and bad-natured gossip. Her partner was light on his feet, a good talker and a devoted dance partner so she was content with the result of her informal oath. About midnight, an outdoor fight spilled over onto the dance floor and a downed battler noted that the new boy about town had deformed feet, which had the appearance of horse hooves reversed. Being a bit drunk, he blurted out the fact that the devil stood among them. Immediately, the dark lad took on the aspect of a rocket and blasted an escape hole in the roof of the dance hall. The girl was found in a faint, the print of a male hand burned in her back. The stock car burned to ashes in the time of the departure. The girl recovered and was taken home but soon fell into a fever and died before dawn. The devil is a consummate shape-changer showing up most commonly as a dog or horse. Those with very deep roots in folklore may recall that the Teutonic-Scandinavian god, Odin, rode a white eight-footed steed, called Sleipnir, at the head of his Asgardreia or Woden's Hunt. The Wild Huntsmen travelled on the winds of winter gathering up souls of those who had died during the year. People who heard the wild cry of the Yuletide storm fancied the noise as the cries of Woden's hounds and snorting steeds. People who responded to the call in good faith were sometimes rewarded with a gift of a horse's leg thrown from the sky. If this was kept overnight it would be perceived as gold in the daylight. With those he disliked, Woden would leave a bad-tempered black dog, which would have to be "boarded" until the next passage of the host unless it could be frightened or exorcised away. Sawyer's Lumber Camp at Dark Harbour Grand Manan was a going concern in the 1930s. After the woods-work men played musical instruments, red or occasionally gambled> Four of them were intent on this last occupation when the door-hook lifted and a huge hound more than four feet high padded into the shack, looked soundlessly at each man and then walked back into the forest. One man swore inaudibly and dumped his handful of cards into the fire. He rushed to the doorsill and again there was not a print in the snow that stretched from here to the nearest woods. Considering the former high estate of Odin, the people of Maritime Canada were showing due respect in the rites they attached to white horses. Even meeting a white horse, the advice is to bow three times, cross the fingers, and spit on the ground as it passed, taking any bad luck "to earth".

White horse, criss-cross; Money comes before loss. At Halifax, Creighton found this ritual: "When you see a white horse, thump your open left hand with the right fist closed tight. Open the right fingers and blow a kiss, then slap knee, close fist, thump left hand again and wish." At Wolfville another of her respondents suggested licking the fingers,m touching them to the palm; stamping the fist into the palm and wishing. My grandfather suggested that the actual rites were insignificant providing that the lucky individual refrained from looking at the horse's tail as the animal passed. The early Celts In Britain were horsemen but not gentlemen-farmers. When they were defeated by the Anglo-Saxons, horses were used to carry knights, while the peasant population had to till the ground with hand-tools. Eventually, they were given oxen, the horse not being available for farm work until about 1820. Even in 1830 all the work in the countryside about Banff, Scotland was done with the "twal (two) ousen (oxen) plough." The only "gearran" (horse) in the area belonged to the minister. The situation was similar in Atlantic Canada, oxen having been retained in Nova Scotia as late as the middle of this century. Pigs and dogs and horses were singled out as devils, or the Devil, because of character flaws. The Shetland pony was nothing to be feared and neither was the lumbering Galloway, but when they were cross-bred they were "restive, recalcitrant brutes", and these were the base stock of farm labour in northern England and Scotland in the nineteenth century. The Anglo-Saxon word "smith" originally meant "knife", and this suggests their original occupation. The first knives were probably pounded out of soft meteoric iron with hammers. Eventually the name was expanded to include all metal workers who used hammers and fire as a part of their craft. The various "smithcraefts" included blacksmithing, or working with iron; tinsmithing, and gold and silversmithing, sometimes collectively called whitesmithing. Horses became integral to the blacksmith's trade by the 1840s. In Britain, there used to be peculiar "trade-unions" set up to serve the various crafts or trades; the Miller's Word, the Brewer's Word and the Ploughman's Word being some that come to mind. "Word" originally meant "orator", or one who spoke for a group. These were not tradeunions in the modern sense, having something of the organization and practices of medieval witchcraft. In medieval times all-male branches of the witch-cult flourished in Britain, these included the Ploughman's Word. When oxen went out and horses came in, the Ploughman's Word became the Horseman's Word (about the middle of the nineteenth century). The cult quickly filled the countryside in England and Scotland, passing from there to Ireland with the settlement of Scot's planters in that country. Until comparatively recent times, its membership was the farm-labour pool of the entire north-east of Britain. When the Brits and the Scots moved to Canada starting about 1800, the "made Horsemen" were with them. Naturally, the Christian clergy objected, but the Horseman's Word was not done in until the tractor arrived in the following century. Hamish Henderson has suggested that, "in the douce and decorum kirkyards (of Scotland)..." lie thousands of Scot who supported the Kirk but went to their graves as adherents of a devillish horse cult, all having accepted the fraternal handshake of "Old Hornie".

The extent of our former dependence on horses cannot now be appreciated, but barely forty years ago my home town had two huge, round, cast-iron watering-troughs at the east and west ends of the main street. In addition, Saturday night traffic was more horse-and-wagon than automobile (the latter having been torpedoed by World War II gas-rationing). Ice and coal were delivered to homes by horse-driven conveyances and farm machinery was hauled about the fields by animals, most often the horse. At that time, there were sixteen livery-stable-forgeblacksmith shops in Saint Stephen, N.B. There were smiths in both the Stewart and Mackay branches of my family, and the Royal Garage, which they set up to service automobiles had been the Royal Stables. The largest forge in town was a huge octagonal building between the Garage and Lonicera Hall, a lavish estate in the same block. There were no whispers concerning the Horseman's Word in any of the stables of my day, the cult having succumbed with the coming of motor-driven farm machinery. Nevertheless, the Word was a going concern in almost all of rural Britain and it followed the farm labouring class to the new world. The Horseman's Word was an enigmatic part of my youth word as there had been blacksmiths and farm-labourers on both sides of the family. I gained little information from my immediate forbearers as the cult was a museum piece by the 1940s. Nevertheless, peripheral lore was picked up at the largest of eleven blacksmith shops, then located in my hometown. Later, I was able to gain a better idea of what the cult had been after it was researched by Henderson for The Scots Magazine (May 1967). In most regions it was celebrated on November 11, which was called Martinmas-In-Winter in most of England. This was once a quarter, or rent-paying day among the Anglo-Saxons, corresponding with December 23rd further north. The number of initiates did not have to be thirteen, but an odd number was required. The initiates were young lads from the neighbourhood, who knew they were "called" if a wisp of black horsehair was left in an envelope at their door. The meeting was always in a distant barn, the locale being changed yearly to escape detection. Novices were expected to bring a flask of whisky (which was easy to obtain in the early Victorian period), a jar of jam, and a half loaf of bread to their first meeting. On whatever night was selected the novices were met, blindfolded and led to the initiation site. At the barn they had to give the "horseman's knock", which was three measured raps, not unlike the death knocks) and then whinny like a horse. The lads would each have to respond to entry questions including, "Who bade ye come here?" The correct answer was either "Old Hornie" or "the Devil", and most had been coached on the answers. After promising he would neither write no speak of anything observed afterwards, the novitiate was admitted. At midnight, all knelt blindfolded in a circle within the barn, the left foot bare and the left hand raised, while the "minister" went through the "mysteries of the Word", which included passwords, the name of the first horseman (Tubal Cain), and an invocation, which could be used to call the Devil in case of need. (These were two verse extracts from the Bible which might be recited backwards to gain the attention and assistance of the "wonde", or devil.) Having heard the password for the cult, all the boys, who were usually ten years of age had to swear again that they would "neither write, nor dite, nor recite" any of the secrets they had heard. Immediately, a senior lifted the blindfolds one by one and thrust paper and pencil at each novice saying: "You have heard The Word, now write it!" Those sharp enough to remember their promise refuse but others took a "lick" across the fingers with a horsewhip or back-chain, and this continued until the les-son was learned. Afterwards, new member was again

blindfolded and made an official member by shaking hands, or hoofs, with the "Devil". This was sometimes a man dressed in calf-skin who tend-ered the cloven hoof of a moose , but it might be the hoof of a live goat or a dead deer or moose. This completed everyone ate and drank, while he older horsemen imparted practical hints on managing animals. Those saddled with a balky horse were told to use their verses to conjure up the devil-horse, a black stallion, of fierce appearance. The newly-made horseman had to slip a collar over the neck of this animal and mount it, for afterwards he would be free of handling difficulties relating to horses. As the drinking unfolded the "made" members would challenge one another with esoteric questions for example: "What does a horseman need most?" The standard answer was "More light to see", but more ribald suggestions were made. As the whisky went low the time would come for the Horseman's Toast: Here's to the horse with the four white feet, The chestnut tail and mane; A star on his face and a spot on his breast, And his master's name was Cain! Finally, at dawn, the "Made Horsemen" and their elders staggered home to cope, as best they could, with the farm horses in the morning. One man, whose father was a member, believed that the whole thing was a fiction until he overheard his father talking to a horse-trader. "I didn't realize for several years that these "brothers" were dead serious, and that they were not talking about trade union activities but about black magic, the language of horses, horse-worship and the like. In looking back, I'm quite sure this was an occult organization." ... it was not at all concerned with Trade Unionism; but purely committed to black magic, the occult, the language of horses, horse worship &c ... I gather this business was very much alive (ca 1895). I am quite sure the Horseman's Word was in essence and practice an occult organization.... Although this clearly had connections with the seventeenth century witch-cults, women were excluded and members were prevented from revealing their mysteries to anyone wearing an apron excepting farriers and blacksmiths. After the turn of the century, the cult withered, the tractor displacing the horse. As far as we know their is no Tractorman's Word. Nevertheless, in New Brunswick some men still balk at the purchase of a white footed horse with a starred forehead and white chest, and black stallions are though uncanny especially if met at night. The festival now called Hallowe'en (also known as All Hallowed Evening or All Saint's Eve) preserves pagan elements although in Canada the reason for its rites are now largely unknown. The name Hallowe'en was a Christian substitute for All Soul's Eve, which was originally the very important Celtic fire-festival known as the Samhainn. The importance of the festival of Samhainn is clear: for one thing, its lore held out longest against pressure from the alternate customs of Anglo-Saxon invaders, for another, the first of November, based on the unreformed Julian calendar has long been regarded as the true New Year's Day in the most recalcitrant Celtic outposts. Samh was a moon-goddess, the major deity of summer (which was named samhradh, the parade time of the Samh). Samh was a dual-natured goddess, who changed form to rule

over winter as Cailleach Bheur, the winter goddess. Samhainn celebrated the last day of her reign, November the first. This day was the beginning of the geamhradh (parade of the gamekeeper) of Cailleach Bheur. This celebration of the beginning of winter was essentially a festival of death and the dead. As such, this was a time for new beginnings and divination of what might be expected in the coming year. A major part of the Samhainn festivals revolved around fires. The bonfires, or bone-fires, were named with reason, and in certain Scottish villages boys beg peat for the samhnagan with these words: "Ge's a peat t' burn the witches." That custom is no longer followed. The pouring of food libations on the ground and ritual eating took place around these old bone-fires, but the chief rite was left-hand round-dancing about the flames. The soul-dancers of Atlantic Canada were mummers representing attendants of very old pagan deities such as Odin, Thor, Frey, Tyr and Samh. We would have to guess at how much of this remains in Atlantic Canada, but can tell you of what was, in times not long past: When Trans-Canada Airlines was still in business, I travelled between New Glasgow, Nova Scotia and Fredericton, New Brunswick on a Hallowe'en flight. As we looped inland over Westmorland County, it seemed to me that the entire countryside was ablaze, with the late sun having a fitful time penetrating the smoke haze. Scientists agreed that blackened fields are no more productive than blackened forests but the lore says that crops grow better in burned-over land. The fall and spring-fires may not fall on schedule, but they continue, and their is occasionally an unintentional sacrifice. During the last decade at least three elderly New Brunswick men were entrapped by the flames they had set. It can't be conclusively proven that this is more than coincidence, but folklorist Mary L. Fraser thinks that the burning continues. In Nova Scotia, she noted that "every window was lighted with candles" at this time. While these blessed candles might have invited the attention of the saints in some parts of the world she thought that this lighting savoured of "the pagan illumination of homes on the feast of the dead." Those who were children during my decade (l934-1955) may recall the Hallowe'en rites that revolved around the burning of leaves. It was not considered necessary to entertain children at that time, and they found a good deal of fun in raking up huge piles of leaves which were torched after supper as part of the celebration. At the bed of the fire were potatoes wrapped in foil or buried in a shallow pit. While the fire was burning, the boys jumped through the smoke, and approached the flames on their bellies, seeing who might come closest. The fires were slow burning so they were left and ragamuffin, make-do costumes were donned before making "the rounds". Face blacking came from bonfire ash. Properly disguised, the boys, and a few girls, gathered to extort what they could from their parents. At each door, they paused and shouted "Shell out!"; taking offerings of apples and candy in pillow sacs or burlap bags. Afterwards they came back to the fire, unearthed the potatoes, buttered and ate them in the open air, consumed some of the candy and lobbed the few remaining ashes and sparks into the air at the end of sticks. Without knowing it we used our "open sesame" cry in the old sense of "shell" (to bombard). In the hours just after school was let out the boys of the neighbourhood used to trouble grocery stores with this cry, which usually brought on a penny toss, or a scramble for wax-paper wrapped molasses goodies called "kisses". The same cry was used in making house visits, but only few householders insisted that the disguisers fight for their share of goodies.

At the time, we thought our rites were universal, but I later learned that friends across the border, in the State of Maine, were more strident, demanding "trick or treat". My wife says that her crowd, making house-visits in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, wanted "hogmanay" (but that's another story). Where the blinds were pulled and candy was not offered, tricks were considered, and commonly these were nothing more annoying than knocks on the walls or the doors. A little more sophisticated was the "banshee's saw", but this required that the household have a window containing a screen which had not been removed after the mosquito and black-fly season. One of the Hallowe'en crowd would approach the window with a spool of black thread which was carefully threaded through, and tied to the screen. The thread was then played out, stretched tight, and rubbed with a block of violin rosin. The noise produced was abysmal, and in a few cases would bring a puzzled grown-up to the door. The possibility of being "collared" was lessened by the fact that this device could be operated from a safe distance. Those who were braver, took a spool of thread, notched the spool at the two edges, spindled it on pencil, held it against window glass , and pulled off the thread. The clattering of the spool was amplified by the glass and usually brought some reaction, especially if the act was repeated. While we were busy with this in Saint Stephen, New Brunswick, other children in Lunenburg township, Nova Scotia were up to the same tricks, but there the spool-device was named, "the tick-tack". Bars of yellow "Surprise Soap" were used to mark windows. We carried away wooden doorsteps, but living in town were restricted from tipping over outhouses, or calling loudly through the kitchen sink drain-pipe (which used to empty behind the house on the bare ground). It is just as well we missed the last as wily housewives sometimes jetted soapy water out on their tormenters. Those who retaliated with buckets of water thrown from a doorway ordinarily missed, but on Porter Street our gang was thoroughly drenched by a gentleman who squirted us with a garden-hose aimed from a second-storey-window. Most tricks were simplistic and not dangerous, but we once participated in a questionable stunt: A local lady lived alone in a very large home, and had "harassed" us during the year for taking short-cuts across her property. At Hallowe'en we decided on a virulent revenge. While fireworks were not common in New Brunswick, rockets were generally available in Maine. We smuggled a few of these back across the border, and created chemistry set fuses from common string. That night was moonless with a land fog, so we had perfect cover. We placed a halfdozen rockets nose up beneath the galvanized steel vertical drain-pipes of the house, and joined them in pairs with our fuses. At a signal, three of us put matches to them and retreated to tall grass at the back of the property to see what would happen. The reaction was more than we had hoped for. In a whoosh of sound, one rocket flames up a drain-pipe and a second was not far behind. Both stalled in wire leaf-catchers where the drain pipe intersected the horizontal component at the roofline, but we could hear them struggling to break free. These rockets were designed to explode in the air after burning down their fuel, and that is what happened. The sound was horribly amplified as it racketed across,up and down through the metal-work and we were frightened that we had gone too far, expecting that the elderly occupant might have a heart attack. We had no time to see the rest, or assess the damage to the pipes for a police car arrived and we became fugitives for the rest of that night. From a distance we heard two additional explosions, but not the last since we were tucked into the edge of a distant forest by that time. The lady survived and so did her hardware, but we never repeated that stunt. In mellower seasons, we were also involved in bobbing for apples hung on strings, or floated upon water. In the latter case, soap-flakes added to the water often resulted in interesting quarrels. Samhainn was also a coaxial time because it was the one night when the spirits of the dead, who had not been reincarnated were expected to return to their old homes for a few hours of warmth

and comfort among relatives. In the whistle of the wind, other spirits were also considered at large: Witches then speed on their errands of mischief, some sweeping through the air on besoms, others galloping along the roads on tabby-cats, which for that evening are turned into coal-black steeds. The fairies too are let loose, and hobgoblins of every sort roam freely about. Writing about All Soul's Day in Nova Scotia, Mary L. Fraser says that every window used to be lighted with candles "to light the shades on their return to their own home and back again to the land of the dead." Further everyone was warned not to throw water through a doorway or window "for fear of harming (and possibly angering) the spirits who might be roaming about." This night and the next day were times when it was considered appropriate for better endowed citizens to make gifts of food to their poorer neighbours. Fraser has noted that Hallowe'en Eve was considered "the only day in the year when Satan was unchained." The pagan gods and goddesses are clear counterparts of this modern Devil. The Devil was not the only one let loose: "Witches then speed on their errands of mischief...The fairies too are all let loose..." as well as "the souls of the departed." It was considered that the human soul-dancers were joined by their dead ancestors in the rites where "autumn to winter resigns the pale year." The idea that the souls of the departed walked abroad on Hallowe'en night originated in the Celtic notion of the soul. The word soul refers to the breath, shadow or essence of individual life. The shadow-runner is only obliquely mentioned in the Celtic literature (see Fowke, FOC, p. 153) but is part of common belief. It was formerly held that all people were born with a primary soul, housed in the body, and a secondary soul which was carried by an invisible double called the home shadow, fylgiar, runner, or familiar. Most people could not see their second soul, confronting it only for brief moments before death. Each individual was given a runner (who Christians referred to as angels) by the gods. This runner tried to protect its ward from harm, as human and shadow led lives which were mutually inclusive. Any damage to the one eventually reflected on the other. The average person was only able to detect the advice of his shadow at a subliminal level, as vague hunches or feelings that one should follow or avoid particular acts. Trained witches and gifted people might be able to see their runners and actually combine with their second soul, making observations through its eyes. This was a very useful craft since the runner could run into the past, in which case it was called a hindrunner; or the future, a forerunner. The pagan double-soul also possessed telescopic sight, called clear-vision, which was useful in spying on the neighbours. As children, as well as roasting potatoes in the bonfire, we used to look for omens in the fire by marking light coloured stones with our initials. These stones were thrown into the flames and searched for on the following morning in the sure belief that their absence meant that person would die before another Hallowe'en. Later in life, I was surprised to find that this was a part of the traditional Gaelic belief since it was thought that the soul-runners carried off the token-stones of those destined to join their company. We were also aware of other traditional means of divination, which I now find were based on Celtic models: I believe my grandfather Mackay suggested that the name of the girl one would

marry could be arrived at by going to a place where two brooks met and taking a mouth full of water at midnight. He said that if one travelled from the brook to the nearest resident and stood outside, the first female name mentioned from within would correspond with that of the future spouse. This is a little like a Dartmouth, Nova Scotia resident's suggestion that girls looking for prospects should: Puncture a raw egg and catch a little in a tumbler; add a little water and with this in your mouth walk down the street. The first eligible man you meet will be your future husband. We were never allowed to stay up that late in those pre-television days, but we did try looking into a well to see images of future mates (whatever they might be). Perhaps we would have been successful if we had known that this is best accomplished by a running a red ball of yarn down into the water while saying: We'll wind and we'll bind Our true love to find The colour of his hair And the clothes he'll wear The day that he weds to me. Mary L. Fraser suggested eating a cake made of salt to inspire dreams of a future mate, who was bound to appear offering relief from thirst in a cup of cold water. In western Scotland and the Isles this cake was termed the "bonnach salainn", or salt bannock, an oatcake baked in the ordinary manner except for the addition of an unusual amount of salt. Bannocks are an unleavened bread made of various "kern", corn or grains, typically cooked on a flat-iron or griddle. In modern usage bannock-bread is about the size of a pie-plate. McNeill says that when the bannock is sectioned before being fired or when it is cut into rounded bits, the product is referred to as a "scone". The latter name may derive from the Gaelic "sgonn", a shapeless mass. Bannocks and Irish soda-bread persist in the Maritimes. In our local backwater it was enough to preserve an oatcake intact through a quarter day to assure good luck, prosperity and (presumably) fertility. We knew nothing of the bonnach Bride, Bealltain, Luastain or Samhthain, or even the related "bonnach Salainn" (salted bannock), which is a variant of the Samhainn bannock. The Gaelic designation was unfamiliar to us, but we knew that salted oatcake were a normal part of Hallowe'en festivities. Loaded with salt, this specialty cake was given to lasses who wished to see a dream-image of their future love. It was: to be eaten in the Highlands at Hallowe'en to induce dreams that would foretell the future. No water might be drunk, nor any word spoken, after it was eaten, or the charm would not work. It was claimed that this charm would draw the "befind", or dream-walker, of that future love. (On Grand Manan Island, my Teutonic ancestors put a salted herring, eaten without water, to this same use.) Hallowe'en night in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, may still see the spirit of the hogman although

we doubt that this beast man prowls the countryside as was once the case. In the middle years of this century, children knew the words used in extortion, and used to make house calls, crying out "Hogmanay! hogmanay!" In the earliest years when young "hogges" were involved in disguising food and ale were expected of the householder, but when this became a children's festival a few pennies were thrown at the door or candies were distributed. The Houghman was a mortal earth spirit periodically reincarnate in men at the time of Houghmanday. "Houghmagan" is seen written as "hoggman" or "hogman" and this holiday in England used to be Houghmanday, Hockday or Hookday, which fell on the second Tuesday after Easter. The word hough, in Middle-English means, an underground retreat. In Scotland hogga is still used to describe a hill pasture and in Germany the hoggfolk were identified as the elfs of antiquity, literally "the hill-people" those who lived in the elfvehooggs (elf-hills). Questioned about, it our ancestors said that it was a holiday set up to commemorate the overthrow of the Danes in England. The holiday actually consisted to two days, Hockmonday and Hocktuesday. On the first day, the women of the village used to take positions on either side of a well travelled road, and on signal pull tight a rope stretched across it. If this was craftily managed a passing man was tripped, captured and ransomed to his friends. On the second day this procedure was taken up by the men. (There is suspicion that these "guests" were once bound and were formerly forced to play the part of the May King and Queen.) In old Scotia, the hoggeman appeared on the eve of the old New Year in an animal hide. We can only guess at the ancient rituals, but their remnants in Atlantic Canada are more strongly attached to the month of November than to the spring season. The significance of Hogmanay is made clear when one examines folk-practises in the Isle of Man, one of the former fortresses of the Celtic language. Here the Manx mummers "went the rounds" (like good devils) on Hallowe'en singing a Hogmanay song which began, "Let us in! Tonight is New Year's Night, the Hogunnaa!" In Gaelic-speaking regions fires were extinguished on this night and communal new fire created as a source for individual hearths. Animals were sometimes paraded through the smoke from the fire so that the evil spirits of disease or witchcraft might be driven from them into the flames. In primitive versions of this ritual, evil-spirits were loaded upon the shoulders of the person, or persons, selected to be burnt, in the interest of revitalizing men, the crops and the land. The Hallowe'en attempts to divine the future using one's runner or befind were a small part of a longstanding tradition. From early times, those with Creighton's "gift" of foresight, were said to have the second sight, which the Scots identified as "an dara sealladh". The forerunner and hindrunner were not separate spirits, but the same "fetch" (using another local name) sent out on separate missions. Backsight is an unused word, as is aftsight, but hindsight is still occasionally heard although it is no longer credited to the hind or backrunner, who makes forays into times past. We still use the word foresight, but it also is no longer credited as a function involving the spirit-guide, in this instance called the forerunner. It was considered that the strength of the runner was reflection of the spirit of his human; those who had low spirits were unlikely to perceive anything unusual in a lifetime shared with their invisible companion. If the runner attempted to communicate useful information concerning either the past or the future, the average citizen detected faint "static", which took the form of hunches or feelings of impending disaster.

Creighton has questioned whether the ability to see the past or future should be termed a "gift" since the gift-bearer was emotionally entrapped in a vision and was always left exhausted by the process. The gift has been described as belonging to "the double sighted" since it was observed in two dimensions, the ethereal past or future being seen as an overlay on the present. Those with foresight usually saw the events of their perception acted out in every detail within a short time, but there are tales of Maritimers who observed events many decades in the future. Many individuals have had a single exposure to one of the two sights, but there have been noted seers, who have been able to summon their runners at will. While most people observed events directly related to their own lives, others saw panoramic visions of unrelated happenings from the past or the future. In either case, it has been noticed that the visions were of short duration, and could be pre-empted by refusing to look directly at them. Occasionally, very potent forerunners have carried back material from the death site. My grandfather Guptill spoke of Grand Har-bour resident who was known to have shipped out on a schooner for the Newfoundland banks. His wife was very surprised to heard sounds of his return, and was baffled by the sight of a water trail leading to their living-room which was rarely used. She opened the closed door and saw a figure standing back to her facing the old fashioned mantle-mirror. She barely caught a suggestion of her husbands bearded face before the entire figure, slicker, boots, water and all, faded from view. Within the week. she heard of his death at sea, and only then discovered fragments of dried seaweed spread on the living-room floor. Aside from knocking sounds and materialized runners we have the dead-lights, both fetches and gophers. The gopher starts its journey at the grave-site-to-be. The light rises from there, and travels to the home of its ward, stopping to confront either him or one of his relatives. Uncle George Mackay supposedly saw one while raking hay near the doorway of his home. His son saw the ball coming and watched it fall down along one door panel finally extinguishing himself near his foot. His father was disturbed, but the boy said, "Perhaps it's not for me. You may be ahead of me!" As it chanced they were both dead within a year, although their bones were not found in the shell of their fire-gutted home. I have heard this same light called a "corpse-candle" because of its tendency to presage death. While it was fated to announce the leaving of one individual, one of my grandfather's cronies, Ed Carter of St. Stephen, said that it was best to stand aside when they travelled: I once saw a candle in the fields beside Saint David's Cemetery. It moved making to a nearby farm, but strangely erratic; sometimes on the road, again a lit-tle off in a field. This seemed peculiar to me as I knew they usually took the straight path. I should have known, after a little lapse of time a child died at Oak Bay and the casket was carried from the home to the church to the resting place on a winter day. The road was partially drifted with snow and the men jockeyed back and forth between road and field exactly following the path of the candle. I kept clear of it that day, and have since, for I've been told it will electrocute any that keep it from its duty. Mr. Carter described his candle as "a ball of light with a bit of a tail on it!" This was a thing known to my Scottish forbearers as the "dreag", which MacNeil said looked somewhat like a shooting star except that it "passed very low" and more slowly. My grandfather Mackay

explained that one carrying a halo was intended for a woman, the less flamboyant being for men. Further, the longer the tail, the more prominent the person, the dreag being extended most for a clergyman or a teacher. When a dreag dropped to the ground at night it sometimes lit up the house of the victim, thus homes at Bonny River sometimes showed a bath of light in spite of the fact that they lacked electricity. None of the Scots in that region would walk after dark in the middle of the road for fear of encountering another version of the magic which runners used to announce burials; the phantom funeral. Those who stood in the way of this forerunner might see the passage of hearse, horses and mourners, or hear them, or be pushed into the ditch by an elbowing crowd. Mrs. G.J. Mann saw one when her family lived on a farm at Mannhurst, near Petitcodiac. She told me that the family farm stood on a dirt road that terminated in the yard of a second farm. One afternoon in summer she saw the "black-maria", a horse drawn burial wagon, hurrying up the drive and commented to her mother-in-law that their elderly neighbour must have died. On returning to the scene both women were surprised by the fact that the horses had raised little dust in the dry summer air. In addition. there was a temporary clothesline, filled with laundry, blocking the road and the funeral carriage was not seen returning from its task. Several weeks later the promise of a funeral was fulfilled and the hearse was seen apparently retracing its earlier path. In my view the most unusual communal forerunner stands in St. Andrews Kirk graveyard at Hammond River. As you drive by look for the tombstone of Janet and Hugh Aiton, a white limestone lamb mounted on a base of similar material. The lamb usually faces east towards the Saint John-Sussex Highway, but it if happened to be seen facing west it can be assumed that someone in the district is about to "pass on". For a while, a death-ball was thought to haunt the Temple Knoll cemetery, where many of my relatives are dead. Certainly it is an interesting place, where antique corpses have been unearthed which might serve as their own markers; the flesh having been displaced by limestone. In any event, corpse-candles were seen there. Unfortunately, the lights proved to be a reflection from Fish Fluke Point Lighthouse, which penetrated the bushes to bounce off one highly polished headstone. It was not necessary to go further than my home-town of Saint Stephen, N.B., in order to hear it suggested that the protracted howling of a dog presaged death. Mary L. Fraser has suggested that these animals may be "endowed with the power of seeing phantom funerals and such like things", but it seems more likely that they represent an unwelcome host. While the dog is sometimes recognized as "man's best friend" he has not been universally admired. After the Irish drove off the Norse invaders they continued to speak in awe of the Great Danes, attack dogs which those viking pirates brought with them. In later days, they said that the last act of the invaders was the release of these animals upon the land. According to them, the animals added to the breeding stock of the wild wolves, which the Irish and Scots entirely eliminated from the land. While both of these Celtic races commonly represent cats upon their arms, the dog is unknown in their heraldry, although he was used as a totem by the Anglo-Saxons. My uncle Emory was adept at creating scary stories, so, as a child, I was careful not to place too much credence in his black dog of Outer Wood Island, who was supposedly equal in height to an average horse and had blazing eyes the size of teacups. On the other hand, my grandfather

Mackay had mentioned that a similar creature haunted Partridge Island in Saint John Harbour, and I considered his word reliable. It was generally agreed that the appearance of a phantom dog at the left shoulder of an individual warned that person was a potential enemy. A dog howling at a wedding was considered the worst possible luck, but some Maritimers have suggested that the sympathetic magic of inverting a shoe will "empty the coffin". All of which talk of forerunners brings us to the actual funer-als. The old time wake for the dead has many rites aimed at protecting the Christian soul. The point in all these rituals might have been lost on us except for one doughty Scot remembered that a human guardian was always placed on the door as a lookout against the aog. I recall that aog was said to a weasel-like animal, very like Malsum's creation, the evil trickster known as Lox. Like the little people this soul-collector had the ability to pass invisibly into a house but if suspected precautions could be taken to banish him, smoke being a particularly potent anti-aog device. This is also countermagic used against witches. The fires of October had no other function than to asphyxiate witches. Aog may be a contraction of Aonghus Og, or Angus the Young, a Gaelic god who had a bit of the character of the continental soul-seeker known as Dispater. Angus was considered their god of free-love and the ruler of Tir-nan-Og, the land of youth, the collection point for spirits of the virtuous dead. This is an appropriate place for the pagan dead but not for those of Christian background. (His female counterpart was the Mhorrigan, the witch woman with her crow familiar, the goddess of death in battle, who presumably had her own shelter for those she preferred.) In Cape Breton, as elsewhere, the ceremony commenced with the building of a corpse-table in the living-room. The stand was next draped with white sheets which were also used to cover the adjacent walls. Surrounding the corpse with white had the function of a counter-charm. All looking glasses had to be covered with sheeting, along with the furniture, "so that you wouldn't see the next person who was going to die." The body was laid on the boards as the first act of ritual, after which a small container of salt was placed on the chest of the deceased. In earlier days, the boards would have been carefully selected for the protective influence of the particular tree-spirit of the clan. Today's "whitewitches" are keen to sprinkle salt within their "magick circles", but it is a matter of record that elder-day witches and faeries abhorred salt. The mourning family was not allowed to actively participate in the wake, the neighbours having charge of the rituals, which might last two or three months in order to accommodate visits by relatives from remote communities. During the daylight hours, the men and boys spent their time playing quoits or horseshoes. At eight o'clock, a feast was provided with the guests taking turns at the communal table until everyone had been served. By eleven, the group had re-assembled in the room with the body, where they prayed, gossiped and smoked, pipes and tobacco having been set on the boards with the corpse. Once, wormwood and holly oil were placed on hot charcoal, creating fumes which repulsed the Aog or witch familiars. There are medieval accounts of witches, who were overcome by such fumes, falling to earth in the midst of funeral ceremonies. To ensure that the landing was hard, the peasants used to lay out scythes, bill-hooks and sharp weapons in near-by fields. Pipe-smoking had this same intention, although grandfather Mackay's friends insisted that tobacco and whisky

were "inspiration", allowing closer communion between the mourners and the spirit of the dead. The prayers at the wake were inevitably lengthy, and afterwards most of the company went home, excepting chosen friends of the departed who remained for the night, A special lunch was left for these corpse-visitors, who remained awake through a night of story-telling. If a song happened to be a traditional part of some tale of the gods, witchcraft or the sidhe, it was inserted and sung in robust Gaelic. The next day, the procedure was repeated. It was considered discourteous to the dead to refuse to eat. In most cases, a friend of the family had charge of seeing that every visitor had at least a bite. This was considered a necessity since it was felt that the quantity of food consumed related directly to the time spent between incarnations In Roman Catholic circles this period came to be called purgatory. On the day of the funeral, the coffin was carried off by hand, as it was once considered disrespectful to trail the dead behind an animal. If the distance to the graveyard was long, teams of bearers used to work in relays all along the route. A piper went in advance of the coffin, playing a lament. Appointed mourners followed, and behind them came the guardian of the "respite". On long routes this whisky might be consumed before the burial-party reached the graveyard' and fights sometimes developed between rival clans. In Cape Breton, one march to the grave ended in complex lawsuits, which busied lawyers for more than three years. Although all of the above ceremony was supposed to lay the deceased "to rest," the ritual was not always successful. Ghosts, mortal earth spirits, usually a materialization of a dead human are not uncommon. The Anglo-Saxon. gast, life-force, seems to indicate the nature of the ghost. Formerly the spirit was considered the source of the power that caused objects to locomote, grow, and reproduce themselves. Ghosts of the living and God's ghost, or the Holy Spirit, used to be referred to, but the meaning has narrowed to spirits of dead men (whether denizens of an unseen world or apparitions, spectres or spooks). In entitling her book Bluenose Ghosts, Helen Creighton uses the word in the older, looser sense of any disembodied spirit. The word ghost was formerly used to identify a corpse and is still employed to distinguish false images and things having a foggy appearance. (Pratt has noted that "ghost bread" is one of several expressions used to describe commercially produced white bread.) Ghosts are occasionally distinguished as runners and revanters, the former being the haunts of the living (the forerunners or hindrunners); the latter, those of the dead. Ghosts have been known to materialize in the form which they had while alive; on the other hand, they may appear as globes of energy or as totem animals. In all instances, they are properly associated with a deceased individual. It used to be supposed that the internal soul of a man united with his external soul after death, afterwards moving on to reincarnation, purgatory, heaven or hell, depending on individual belief. Ghosts sometimes become bound to an earthly place through the trauma of death by accident or suicide. Infrequently, they agree (often unintentionally) to this binding in the interest of guarding a treasure, but more of that later. Sometimes this visual remnant of the dead remains to communicate incomplete business or to give a living individual a glimpse of the after-life. There are as many types of ghosts as their are types of people. While many ghosts are benign the haunting of some buildings has left them uninhabitable. At Barnaby River, a dead resident

had his place taken by a very physical ghost, in the form of a knocky-booh. Sounds of an invisible wrecking crew began with the internment of the body and a neighbour, visiting the house was met by "a blast of wind blew me right out the door..." This house was offered for sale at $900 but there were no takers. While many of our residents have been cowed, or even driven out, by such activities, some have displayed a formidable forbearance. Ryan's Castle poltergeist used to reside in a massive stone building immediately northwest of Saint John. In the hey-day of activity doors opened and slammed shut and knives went flying across the rooms to the horror of those unfamiliar with the situation. The owner of the residence simply advised his guests, "It's only mother. She'll be gone shortly." On the Keswick a suicide occurred on August 11 at precisely 11 pm. On the anniversary of this date a window in the room where the death took place busts outward with great violence but no logical explanation. King Seaman was a wealthy ship builder, living at Minudie, on the Fundy shore of Nova Scotia in the mid 1800's. He once hosted several young medical students from Harvard University, leaving them at his home when he went to attend his business in nearby Amherst. At the latter centre, he witnessed the hanging of John Doyle and noted the problem that arose over disposal of the body. When the locals refused to bury it in their cemetery, he agreed to take it home to Minudie for a private burial on his own land. He did as promised, but the medical students dug it up in the dead of the night and secretly carried the head back to the Boston States. "After that, many folk in the area met the headless, John Doyle, on foggy nights, (always) looking for 8081 his head." The Ghost at Mount Allison University was supposedly generated at the death of Miss Ethel Peake, who died by suicide in the piano practise-rooms on the fourth floor of Hart Hall in 1954. In life, she had been a specialist in German lieder singing and a teacher of music in a nearby building known as Beethoven Hall. 8182 Although the Hart Hall spook was generally more circumspect it was widely heard and sometimes seen. These two buildings were joined to one another by a girl's residence known as Allison Hall. Allison Hall and the "conservatory" were both wooden buildings of Victorian age and were disassembled to make way for the university library. Hart Hall was a brick building, and thus escaped high insurance costs and the wreckers ball. The latter building went through various stages of use, most recently as a residence for female students and afterwards as quarters for various university clubs. [It may interest you to note that this is one of the residences where Mum stayed while at Mount A. She described the rooms as being taller than they were wide or long, which I can vouch for having attended classes there. Hart Hall is now the English Department's main building.] Ethel either lived or had studio space on the fourth floor of Hart.


Halpert, Herbert, A Folklore Sampler, p. 9.

For her not entirely candid "In Memorium" see the Yearbook, Mount Allison, TwentyFifth Edition, 1955, p. 10 (unnumbered pp).


After her death, strange happenings began to trouble that part of the university. Ethel was in no position to sing the requiem at her funeral in Beethoven Hall, but it was observed that the per-son who did was somehow able to voice notes which were beyond her usual range. Further, it was noticed that they she sounded uncannily like the departed teacher. Ethel's studio space in Hart Hall afterwards displayed an eerie periodic purple light which could be sen through a east-facing window, but quickly flickered out when people went to investigate. One pair of students actually climbed the stairs to the attic where they found nothing but a great gust of wind, which blew so vigorously it tore wallpaper from its place. Students who came to live on the lower levels reported detecting singing, the sound or a piano, footsteps on the old oiled floors, and threatening cries from the top-most window. Ironically, the haunt became installed in rooms eventually given to the Psychology Department. Shannon Baxter said that she saw the ghost in an-other form; a glowing purple light. She assumed it was someone working late in the Psychology Department but was later told that this was actually the floor where practice pianos were located and that Ethel was known to spend time there. In the 1970's new co-educational residences were erected on the campus and Hart became a place for faculty offices and study rooms. When not engaged in her singing lessons, Ethel has been known to walk the second floor hall-ways, dogging the passage of students. A few people have stood unmoving on this floor while the invisible presence by-passed them on her way to the first floor. In the 1980's Nancy Mortimer noted: "People have been studying on the second floor in Hart Hall and have heard the sound of someone walking down the stairs and they've looked at the stairway and there was no one there. But the sound of the footsteps has continued on past them and down to the first floor." 8283 The purple light continued to shine and noises were still heard and, according to Diane Ross: a guy (and his associates) went up there at night ... They started to climb the stairs ... and a window blew in and a great gut of wind blew all the papers off the walls and around the floor. And (the visitor) said this all happened at midnight.... They immediately walked quickly down all the stairs and left the building. Another student remembered the retreat as less controlled, noting that the "football player" had actually seen Ethel and afterwards "left in a panic and fell down the stairs and broke both legs." 8384 Herbert Halpert thought this was the first "college ghost" reported within Canada, but this is not the case. The University of New Brunswick at Fredericton predates Mount Allison by a few years, and had a similar ghost in the Lady Jean Chestnut residence on Charlotte Street. There is also the shade of Mr. Buckle, who haunted King's Collegiate School in Windsor, Nova Scotia.


Halpert, Herbert, A Folklore Sampler, p. 4. Halpert, Herbert, A Folklore Sampler, pp. 3-4.


Buckle and Hebb were headmasters at this boy's school in the years prior to the Second World War, "Pa" Buckle being the senior of the two. In those days, the teachers worked shifts as floor monitors, checking the rooms and the grounds at lights-out. Strangely Mr. Buckle always drew duty on nights when the weather was blustery, while young Hebb made his way about on fine nights. As a result of this strange coincidence, settled moonlit nights came to be known among the boys as "Hebb night." Hebb took part in the Second World War, afterwards returning to King's as headmaster. On his first night in residence the Colonel arrived at the headmaster's "cottage" on a "Buckle night." Within its halls he was surprised to hear "Pa's" familiar step since the older man had died a few months before his return from overseas. When he attempted to throw the light switch, it blinked on and off at him, suggesting someone had set him up for a little joke. He suspected his daughter, but she was completely baffled by this happening, and his footsteps were later heard in residences where she could not be accused of complicity. Ghosts bound to public buildings are common in the region, another example being that of Dean Llwyd of All Saints Cathedral in Halifax. Two weeks after he died his apparition was seen moving into the pulpit at an appropriate point in the Sunday service. A fellow clergyman thought that his senses had been twisted by the loss of his old friends, so he made no mention of this appearance to others in the congregation. His experience was afterwards corroborated by that of two ladies who saw the ghost at exactly the same time and place. Although these ghosts have been recurrent, some have made only one appearance and have been obvious about their intentions: Two farmers named Rossier and Briden lived at Newcastle and had been fishing partners all their lives. While the latter was fishing alone on the Miramichi, his old friend materialized before him. "Don't be scared," he said, "You remember we said that the first one who died, we'd come and tell the other one what it was like in the other world? You live the same as you've ever lived and you'll go to heaven...I had to stay for a time because 8485 I was not fit to go." Following this the ghost vanished. Mary L. Fraser was familiar with ghosts that returned to fulfil a promise. She also thought that "the dead cannot rest easily if they have left debts unpaid, or wrongs done and not righted." In the first category was the story of "poor Bill" a Cape Breton fisherman who was drowned in a squall. When one of his friends put in to shore that same day, he was greeted by an apparition. The villagers what the dead might want of the living: "Not a big thing," admitted the person who had been approached, "He asked me to go to his house and ask for $4.00 to pay a bill he owed at the store." "And did he tell you anything about the other world," they wanted to know? "Well, I asked him if it were as hard as we were thinking, and he said, "No not nearly; there is unlimited wisdom and limited justice." No one was surprised when it was found that the 8586 amount owing was exactly four dollars. An Antigonish ghost had no interest in money, but appeared before his brother counselling him to remove a log the two had felled to prevent a neighbour from crossing their property.


Creighton, Helen, Bluenose Ghosts, p. 160. Fraser, Mary L., Folklore Of Nova Scotia, p. 52-53.


While these encounters went well, living men and women did not always understand that ghosts cannot speak until spoken to. This created a problem for the shade of Ewan Mor, who had been a respectable thrifty old Scot with a comfortable home and a fat back account. When he found his sons making withdrawals on his behalf, he took all of his earnings and hid them in a box in the barn. Unfortunately, he failed to tell his heirs where the cash had been hidden before he died. During his lifetime he had been a congenial host whose home was filled with friends and wayfarers. In death, his shade appeared frequently within his former residence and people were dissuaded from staying there by poltergeist disturbances and the constant sound of footsteps. Finally a passerby found himself sleeping in the house and was awakened by the ghost. Sitting bolt upright he blurted out: "In God's name, what do you want?" Obviously relieved Ewan Mor's shade told him to take up the threshing floor in barn and look for a strong box, in which there was money and other valuables which should be distributed to the family." In the morning, the stranger told one of the old man's sons of his encounter. The valuables were found and the uncanny supernatural happenings ceased. Another type of ghost was the guardian: a spirit deliberately created to act as the warden of a treasure-trove. The guardian might be created either by the gods, in which case it was a sidhe spirit, or by men, in which case the spirit was usually of a fellow man. The guardian (from the Old French, garder or warder, one who keeps watch) was not always assigned to guard a treasure of gold or jewels, sometimes the treasure being of far larger scope. A spirit assigned to guard a countryside was described by Reginald Scot (1665), who supposedly interviewed him while touring the Orkney Islands, immediately north of Scotland: Luridan a familiar of this kind did for many years inhabit the island of Pomonia, the largest of the Orkades in Scotland, supplying the place of man-servant and maid-servant with wonderful diligence to those families he did haunt.... This Lauridan did affirm that he was the genius Astral of that island; that his place of residence in the days of Solomon and David was at Jerusalem; that then he was called by the Jews Belelah; after that, he remained long in the dominion of Wales, instructing their bards in British poesy and prophecies, being called Wrthin, Wadd Elgin (or Merlin), "and now," said he, "I have removed hither, and alas! my continuance is but short, for in seventy years, I must resign my place to Balkin, lord of the Northern Mountains. Guardians who were given less scope are also mentioned: The northern nations believed that the tombs of their heroes emitted a lambent blue flame, always visible at night, (a spirit) that guarded the ashes of the dead. This they called "haunga elldr" (elf fire). It was supposed more particularly to surround such tombs as contained hidden treasure. It was this "divine fire" which Grettir the Strong saw surrounding the head of the dead AngloSaxon hero, Heward the Wake as he lay entombed. He knew immediately that there was buried treasure in the vicinity. Norse marauders were reputedly led to the crypt of Maes Howe, in the Hebrides, by the "death-light", but some of them were misled by its guardian, who generated a magical snow-storm and later blighted the viking-captain with madness.

Guardians were, more typically, runners or befinds forced to become treasure-warders. There are numerous stories of the manner of forming these guardians, all agree that the following elements were essential. When pirates buried their loot they deliberately killed an "unimportant" member of the crew, being sure to ask him if he was willing to take temporary custody of the booty. If they got his agreement, they plied him with drink, butchered him as painlessly as possible and dumped his body into the pit on top of the treasure chest. Having contracted to protect the treasure in life, the spirit of the dead man was compelled to remain as a guardian until released by the pirate captain. Since pirate gold was blood money, and one spirit could only be released by substituting another, additional blood flow was required to quiet a guardian. Some men thought that human blood was needed, but animal blood was used with less fuss and equal results. It was also protocol that the chest had to be opened within the pit and a few coins removed or added to the horde before a treasure could be claimed. If anyone spoke while digging or if any other requirement was overlooked the treasure might sink into the ground where it would remain inaccessible for seven years. Alternately, the guardian was unbound and able to take physical action against the diggers. The guardian at Curries Mountain, on the Saint John River just above Fredericton was typical in his reaction: Three men tried to recover a pirate lode from that site but overlooked the business of opening the chest while it remained in the pit. While they were hoisting the container with block and tackle, the chain parted, and at that one of the men swore aloud. This released a bearded guardian , who was seen to have a cutlass embedded in his chest. He lunged at the treasure-hunters who fled for their lives. Chased to the river bank they were met with the sight of a ghostly sailing ship ablaze in a cold light. As they watched, a crew member fired a ghostly volley at the shore and the phantom ship dissolved into the surrounding fog. Gathering courage, the three went back to the money pit but the guardian and the chest were gone. The spirits of the dead were always torn between duty and a desire to move on to some other incarnation, thus on Red Island, near Chezzetcook. Nova Scotia, Mr. Roast was pursued by a ghostly woman "who chased him around the island three or four times." When he stopped for breath, she sang a song, the gist of which was "There's money here and I want you to take it." Unfortunately he had no notion of proper procedures and no pirate gold was ever recovered. Mary L. Fraser noted that: (pirates) drew lots among themselves to determine which should be killed and buried near the gold. The spirit of this unfortunate...was to guard the treasure. Woe betide the intruder who should rashly tread that soil, or try to dig for the wealth. Hence it became necessary for the treasure-seekers to take every precaution in prosecuting their search. For the locating of the treasure they used a curiously constructed rod. A small sealed bottle containing a liquid of which mercury was one of the ingredients, was flanked on either side by long strips of whale-bone attached to it by leather thongs. The free ends of the whale-bone were curved outward so as to fit on the thumbs of the person who carried the rod. Only a person whose thumb-prints were perfectly circular could use it effectively. The rod was carried in absolute silence, with the bottle upwards. The bearer knew he was near the treasure when the bottle of its own accord, swung down to the earth. There is no (local) tradition of treasure having been found in this way; but there is one well-authenticated instance where a very valuable watch

that was lost in a field was located by means of the (divining) rod."


We suspect that few men willingly submitted to death, most being tricked into taking on the role of guardianship. Guardians came into being where the invisible second soul was prevented from uniting with the primary soul because of death-trauma. Since the soul-runner, flygiar, or cowalker made every possible effort to warn men, or women, against those who plotted the death, an incredibly stupid or besotted individual was needed, as it was a requirement of binding that the person selected had to agree to his own death. Pirates sometimes selected valueless hostages for the purpose, although an inexperienced, new crewman was sometimes willing to do duty. Enos Hartlan told Helen Creighton that, "When the man volunteered to stay with the treasure, 8788 "they had a party and soused him and buried him alive with the treasure." In other cases they wanted to be certain that the newly-created guardian spirit did not worm his way up out of the ground. When a pirate-captain was about to bury treasure on a Nova Scotian beach he called for anyone willing "to stay with this treasure for a little bit." A young man named Stingles, a later resident of East Petpeswick, Nova Scotia, was about to volunteer when a black man gave consent. As the lad watched in horror, they sliced the head from the quicker speaker 8889 The virtue in being a strong silent person is clear, and and "fired him down the hole." the tradition against volunteering for any military duty is seen as sensible in view of this tradition. As the local Micmac Indians were sometimes conned into serving as guardians, some of them developed a taboo against coming near "the white man's metal." A resident of Scatarie Island, Nova Scotia, suggested that pirates were not the only ones familiar with the means of creating guardians: ... there's gold on the island alright ... been there from the time when the French were having problems with the English here at Louisbourg ... no one on Scatarie ever got any of it. No one dared to dig it up. This was because they buried the gold each with a corpse on top, so that before you'd get to the gold you'd be face 8990 to face with a skeleton.... They didn't think it worth the risk." Some pirates maintained that it was necessary to bury a man alive to produce a satisfactory guardian, others held that the victim might be beheaded, the headless body or the disembodied head making a perfectly satisfactory spook. At Wayerton, New Brunswick a treasure seeker who

Fraser, Mary L., Folklore Of Nova Scotia, p. 78. Creighton, Helen, Bluenose Ghost, p. 47. Creighton, Helen, Bluenose Ghosts, p. 47. A similar story on p. 46. Mitcham, The Outer Islands, p. 81, quoting Scatarie resident John Harris.




followed his dream started a pit near Waye's Bridge but was not far into the ground when he encountered a skull which dissuaded him from going further. At Stillwater, Nova scotia, diggers were faced with the vision of six headless men. At Birch Cove, near Apple River, Nova Scotia, used to go regularly to a field to allow his team of horses to feed on the grass. While he was there, a stranger approached him in the darkness; but even in the reduced light he could see that this person had no head. Rooted in fear, he listened as the apparition advised, "Don't be afraid, I mean you no harm. Come with me and I'll show you where there is lots of money." When the man shook his head the ghost rolled itself into a vast ball of fire and rolled away into the distance. For three days after, this unfortunate dreamed of his headless man, who insisted that he should return to the field to an old pole fence, following it to a treasure buried in a great stone pile somewhere along its length. Two years passed before the individual gathered the courage to do as he had been told and he did locate the stone pile, but on it sat a huge black snake, unlike anything he had thought to see in eastern Canada. Sometimes the instructions left with a guardian were explicit; thus, at Rose Bay, Nova Scotia a pirate-captain is said to have delivered this eulogy-cum-demand over a fresh grave: You're to guard this spot for one hundred and fifty years. Now hear you devil, you take up the keys (to the strong-box) until such time as a rooster will plough 9091 and a hen will harrow. Then deliver up the keys to those who do so. As Creighton has said the guardian was always torn between a desire to end its binding and the necessity of keeping the terms of its contract. On one hand, the spirit sometimes made extraordinary attempts to inform men of the treasure, for its recovery meant that the haunt was relieved of duty. Not infrequently it appeared to people in dreams laying out in great detail how the treasure might be gained. At other times it created lights over the treasure-pit or left physical clues to the place where the valuables lay buried. Some of these ghosts even pleaded their case complaining that they should be exempted from further work because of long service. Some whined over their confinement and on an island near French village, Nova Scotia, a female of this kind demanded that a passing boater should, "take me off this island." Her hoped-for saviour fled in abject terror because she was not entirely materialized. No matter how helpful guardians were at pointing out the treasure, they were forced to take up another mask when men actually started to dig for it. In the protective mode, the ghost was apt to materialize and in any of a number of terrifying ways. Usually guardians have appeared bound to a small stretch of shore-line or an island, and it is generally said that spooks cannot cross water. An exception to this was an island-guardian at Salmon River, Nova Scotia, who pursued treasure-seekers into the water, where she attempted to wrestle oars out of their hands. The Oak Island treasure-pit off the south shore of Nova Scotia is the most worked over site in Atlantic Canada and it had a well-known guardian who is a case in point: This island was rumoured to house a "money-pit" long before an actual depression was discovered in 1795 but men avoided the place because it was said to be haunted. During that summer three young men from the nearby mainland examined a dying tree that stood over what looked like a filled in well.

Creighton, Helen, Bluenose Ghosts, p. 50.

One sawed-off limb that stretched over the "pit" showed signs of having been worn by the effects of a block-and-tackle. They commenced to dig and kept at it until 1804 when they discovered a flat stone at the 95 foot level. The stone had markings in an unknown language which no one seemed able to decipher. Whatever it said, the message was lost after the 14x36" slab was moved to Halifax, displayed, and relegated to use as a surface on which to pound leather. At the 100 foot level the lads found a layer of planking and were confident that the treasure lay directly beneath. They never did find out, for overnight the shaft flooded up to the 30 foot level and could not be freed of water. In 1805 another group managed to get a parallel pit down as far as the 110 foot level, but it gushed water barely allowing them to escape with their lives. The attempts that followed were legion, the most concerted effort being made by a U.S. based incorporation in 1899. They drilled to 153-feet, finding oak and loose metal there along with eight inches of cement. Beyond that, at 171 feet, they augured into iron plate. In that effort the drill picked up a bit of parchment bearing quill pen writing, again in an indecipherable language or cipher. None of these individuals, groups, or formal companies ever managed to dig a pit that would stay free of water. While all this was taking place, reports started of men who had seen ghost pirates burying the elusive treasure. A tall white pillar of light was also noticed foraging across the island, and gopher-lights, or fetches, were seen, apparently trying to lead men to the treasure. By the 1930's it was established that the leading guardian was a "man" wearing a scarlet coat of antique style. This red-coated guardian was seen first by the lighthouse keeper's daughter and later by a lad from Chester. In 1931 a mineral-rod dowser looking for new digs met face-to-face with the ghost and was told, "You're in the wrong place." The spook then drifted to another spot and pointed downward, afterwards disappearing into the earth, passing downward amidst sounds similar to those made by "a fence mallet driving stakes into the ground." That night the treasure-seekers said they were pursued to the edge of the island by what appeared to be "a fourfooted animal apparently covered by a sheet." Led by William Chappell, who had been on hand at the dig of 1897, another company sank a shaft to 163 feet and although convinced they had by-passed the treasure, did find, deep in the ground, a pick, an anchor fluke, a miner's seal oil lamp and an old used axe head. Not much was seen of the guardian after that time, but the pillar of light, frequently seen by members of the Chappell expedition was seen again in 1950 when John W. Lewis made his attempt at fame and fortune. In 1966, the Triton Alliance took over the search which is still going on. Their most spectacular report to date was the sighting of "a chest and a floating hand" viewed on the monitor for a remote camera lowered into a new eighteen-inch diameter passageway. Unfortunately, this was another dead end, for when expedition leader attempted to have himself lowered into this tube it began to collapse and he escaped with only seconds to spare. The fellow who guarded Oak Island reminds one of the spirit at Old Pokiok Falls, near Woodstock, New Brunswick. There men were using a divining rod of witch-hazel to locate hidden wealth when they were joined by "a gaunt stranger clad in a mildewed red jacket, knickerbockers, a sou'wester, and bearing a sheathed sword at his side." This guardian appeared unable to speak (a prohibition placed on all such spirits until they have, themselves, been addressed, but he was capable of a cackling laugh which was enough to scare off the humans in his presence.

Similarly, at Port Royal men sought treasure in the old foundations of the French fort. In one dig, an iron cook-pot was found beneath a flat rock at the three foot level. Engrossed in their digging, the men of this company were at first unaware of: ...a big hound of a man with black scraggly whiskers on him and he had a handkerchief knotted in four corners and a big loose shirt and a belt and a candle. He was holding a candle against the rock that held the rope up and the rope was burning. The three of us ... we skedaddled. Returning to the scene at a later date, the men observed that there was no sign the ground had ever been broken by a spade. The treasure on Oak Island has been attributed to Captain Kidd, not only because the age of the money-pit seems appropriate to his time, but also because a rock installed on the island was supposed to have been engraved with the words "200 Kidd." There is no dearth of these enigmatic inscriptions on our beaches and shorelines. Some were undoubtably cut by pranksters, but a few may be credited to the hands of pirates and some may have been the busywork of guardians. At Glen Margaret, BG, in Cape Breton there was a rock marked simply enough with three lines and the words, "Kapt Kit". A few hundred miles away at Marion Bridge, near Fortress Lunenburg, is another tombstone shaped rock bearing the legend "Captain Kidd died without mercy." Unfortunately no vital statistics appear with this message and there is no evidence that the great villain was buried in Nova Scotia. At White Island, in this same province, there is another rock bearing hand-chiselled letters, but it is even less informative being worn beyond comprehension. The protocol for recovering treasure is not fully laid out, the steps varying with local folklore. In a few places, it was felt that the ceremony should start with a repetition of the three "Holiest Words in the Bible" viz., "Father, Son and Holy Ghost, but others were sure this litany had little effect on pagan water-spirits. It was generally supposed that since, "blood was shed in the burial of a treasure," it would have to be "shed to again get the treasure out." Some guardians were quite explicit that this was a prerequisite. A female-guardian offered the way to treasure at West Chezzicut, but explained that it could only be taken after "you've drawn blood from two twins." This generous offer was not taken up because those who were informed were not aware that human blood was not required, the blood from a rooster, or from twin lambs being sufficient. At Ship Harbour a guardian asked that blood be spilt for blood but had the sense to add that animal blood was a viable substitute, and she escaped from her bondage. It is thought that tracing a circle about the site will bind an evil-spirit on the spot , but it is by less certain that a treasure can be stabilized in time and space by discharging firearms three times over the place. The business of casting a coat over a treasure-chest will not work, the authentic formula calling for "a turned-coat" like those worn by the fay-people of ancient times. It is still thought necessary for treasure-seekers to place money within the horde once the treasure chest is opened. Failing that, it is necessary that a sample be removed, before full retrieval is guaranteed. Some men were of the opinion that a rock needed to be hung from a wooden tripod directly above the treasure to stabilize its position. At Cow Bay, a gentleman with knowledge of such matters noted that, "treasure comes up every seven years for a bath," but he could not recommend going after it since, "pirates' money is bad money, and no good can come of possessing it." The notion that buried treasure needs to "recharge its batteries" is

widespread. In most places the period between appearances is three, seven or nine years but in parts of eastern Europe it is held that treasure only emerges once in each century. This has not stopped Maritimers from trying. In 1928 "The Fredericton Gleaner" reported: Newcastle Men Looking For Capt. Kidd's Treasure... The arrest of George Bulgar, Cornelius Durant, Randolph E. Doucette, Moise Durant, and Charles Peters by Provincial Policemen Pettigrew and Faulds on the tarvia road between Newcastle and Chatham at two o'clock this morning solved the mystery which has been attached to the strange activities, the blinking lights and ghostly noises which have been prevalent in that vicinity. George Butler, captain of the mystery crew ... claims to have been within six inches of Capt. Kidd's treasure chest when the arm of the law reached out and probably saved unsuspecting motorists from serious injury, had the diggers continued in undermining the road. Bulger claims that the location of the treasure was revealed to him in a dream. He gathered the other four members of his band and the work was being carried out through the stillness of the night.... Officers Pettigrew and Faulds placed the men under arrest in Chatham where they were allowed their liberty this morning after promising to refill the tunnel which they had dug beneath the road and to refrain from further treasure hunts. 9192 The guardians of treasure have taken many forms including an ghosts of the deceased, spiritlights, and totem animals. The best special effects have included hindrunners of groups of individuals along with ghost ships of an earlier age. When a company went to retrieve a buried fortune from Margaree Island, in Inverness County, Cape Breton, they seemed destined to succeed. Unfortunately a shovel resounded loudly against the iron-bound chest they had unearthed and this was enough to loosen certain bound spirits. As the diggers watched, a ghostly ship sailed into a nearby swamp and men attired in the loose clothing of ancient mariners marched toward the opened pit. The treasure-seekers rushed to the safety of a nearby hunter's cabin, but the white-faced crewmen followed them to the very windows, crowding their glowing faces against the panes. The refugees were thoroughly cowed, but at the stroke of midnight, the wraiths disassembled into strips of ectoplasm that filtered back into the other world. 9293 At Mabou, in Inverness County, Cape Breton, two men expecting to gain from digging in the banks of a little stream were not noticeably bothered by a flock of black birds that careened overhead. They were a little unnerved to see the birds slowly vanish, while black clothed men gathered up stream to stand watching their progress as they dug by moonlight. At first there were only three men, but as the birds disassembled the crowd of men grew to hundreds. At last the terror-stricken men had the sense to bolt, and ran across several fields in an attempt to escape the host that followed. When they arrived at their aunt's house, she was sure they

Grant, B.F., Fit To Print, p. 117. Fraser, Mary L., Folklore Of Nova Scotia, p. 80.


suffered a delusion and was solicitous, promising them fresh milk from the cow in the barn. As she entered that place, she found the interior filled, shoulder-to-shoulder, with close packed guardians of the treasure. She quickly dropped her milk pail and retreated to the house, 9394 completely forgetting her former derisive attitude. Again, on the south coast of Nova Scotia, an iron-bound chest was well known to several decades of seamen. Its outline was always distinctly seen and when boats gathered, bad-luck johnnies, black birds, which might have been crows or ravens gathered. Once a group tried to raise the chest and the birds, led by a headless animal, swarmed so tightly about them they had 9495 to leave the operation. If individual guardians are less awe-inspiring, they too can be frightful, or eccentric enough, to prevent most lost wealth from being taken from its resting place. At Ingonish Beach, treasureseekers were working in the pit when they looked up to find themselves beneath a millstone, suspended from a flimsy rope, and rotating "at a rate of a thousand turns a minute." If that was not enough the devil appeared on horseback, brandishing a sword, with which he promised to cut the support. Absolutely terrified but unable to act, one of them shouted out "God save us!" This was sufficient to "do in" the apparition, but it also caused the treasure to sink magically 9596 It is a tenant of the trade that into the earth, so that it became impossible to relocate. treasure seekers cannot speak of the Christian deity or have anything blessed by a priest on their persons. In point of fact all noise-making puts the project at risk: Many a time a group of men have got as far as finding the chest, and one of them has spoken, thus breaking an inviolable rule. Without waiting to see what would happen they simply dropped their shovels and fled, confident that the whole expedition was ruined by this indiscretion.... For with human speech the 9697 guardian ghost was given power which, until then, it could not use.... At Glen Haven, Nova Scotia, Helen Creighton found a gentleman who indicated a possible result: "If you talked while you were digging for treasure, the money would sink down, or the devil would come with his head bare, or the man buried with the treasure would come with his


Fraser, Mary L., Folklore Of Nova Scotia, p. 86. Fraser, Mary L., Folklore of Nova Scotia, p. 89. Fraser, Mary L., Folklore Of Nova Scotia, p. 81. Creighton. Helen, Bluenose Ghosts, p. 48.




9798 sword in hand to kill you." Elsewhere the folklorist was told that, "Once it goes back to the earth it stays there, as a rule, for seven years, and it is useless digging (to retrieve it) before 9899 that time.

In spite of the supernatural effects of guardians, men have had notable successes at recovering treasure. Some of these finds have been totally pedestrian although no less welcome than money received after great effort. A couple at Clarke's Harbour supposedly went from poverty to riches after finding paper bills widely spread in the upper tide-line. At this same place, another man saw a bag half buried in sand amidst eel grass. Kicking at it, he spread paper money to the wind before realizing his good fortune. In New Brunswick, treasure may still be buried beneath "The Bar". a long gravel beach that stretches from French's Point to the mouth of Belding's Creek in Saint John County. The northern part of the bar is desolate but the south is partly covered with spruce trees and here is a small graveyard where the earliest settlers were buried, starting in the year 1795. An isolated spruce tree standing well out on the bar is locally known as the "Money Tree." This is not the original tree bearing this name, but it does stand at the site of one given this name by the first inhabitants. It is guessed that the earlier tree must have been used as the support for block-and-tackle to lower a treasure into the earth and certainly coins have been found scattered in the sand. The list of successful finds is very long: In 1883, Cabel Stokes is supposed to have retrieved $13,000 gold from Long Island on the Kennebecais River, and at St. Martins, in 1894, The Saint John Telegraph reported $8,000 in gold coins found at West Quaco along with,"two iron bread knives with oak handles initialled GKP." The lands around Fort Beausejour have supposedly yielded $30,000 in gold while nearby Tantramar marshes are reported having given up at least one sock filled with gold. Still in New Brunswick, traces of gold. silver and oak and twenty-five 25 French antique silver plates have ben taken from the ground at Jollicure. At the Neck of the Hammond River, Henry Prince located and took away "a chest of Mexican silver." "Money Island," on the Miscou shore takes its name from a find of eleven ancient coins which were once found amidst coal that had washed ashore. The most intriguing tales are those where the ending is enigmatic: Campobello Island was once the "feudal fiefdom" of its grantee, Captain William Owens. It was always rumoured that there was a horde on that island, possibly somewhere along Herring Cove, where men of the past could routinely view the remains of the 30- or 40-ton vessel supposed to have some part in the burial. Those who spoke about this wreck marvelled at it its all-wood construction, noting that iron was entirely absent from the hulk. Here men, who openly claimed to be the descendants of buccaneers, camped each summer through the years at the turn of the 1800's. At the first they approached Captain Roibinson Owen, the last of his colourful line, promising him a onethird cut for permission to dig up the thousands of doubloons which they contended were there for the digging. One day, Owen was surprised to find that the diggers had folded camp, leaving him nothing more than a money pit with the outlines of a chest impressed into the soil at the bottom.

Creighton, Helen, Bluenose Ghosts, p. 49. Creighton, Helen, Bluenose Ghosts, p. 57.


A bit northeast of this location is the Plumper Hole, lying within a small cove surrounded by the steep cliffs that stretch between Point Lepreau and Dipper Harbour. This place is named for the British brig "Plumper" which ran ashore here during a storm on November 5, 1812 at about 4 o'clock in the morning. The Plumper was on its way from Halifax to Saint John with 75 persons on board and a cargo that included 1,300,000 pounds in coin, all intended to pay the military men at Saint John. Of those aboard only 30 were saved so it is obvious that no one aboard gave much thought to the pay-load. The survivors found themselves on an unsettled shore and had to hike through the winter-woods for 2 miles to the nearest settlement at Dipper Harbour. Unfortunately, the money sank with the ship into Plumper Hole, which is about 75 feet deep. At the time there was no diving-gear that could penetrate the wreck so everything was presumably intact when Alexander Gibson, engaged at lumbering on the Lepreau River, bought the rights to salvage and hired men to undertake hard-hat dives. According to local tradition they were very successful at bringing the fortune back to the surface but "Boss" Gibson was always non-committal on the subject. It might appear that his fortune was partly based on Plumper gold for extensive dives in this century have brought back "a cannon, 3 anchors, sheets of copper and lead and a number of bronze nails and fastenings." Even more enigmatic were the results of treasure-hunting at the mouth of Tynemouth Creek, further up the Bay of Fundy near St, Martins. Here five Americans arrived by schooner in 1908. They let it be known that they carried a chart that was more than a century old and that they were looking for two local stone markers, one showing a lion's head and three arrows, another lying in the direction of the arrows. The first stone was easily uncovered being a local source of argument and conversation, but the second marker was known to have been removed by a farmer named Andrew Lochley at least twenty-five years before. THe Americans left, saying they had found nothing, but the locals were not as sure. During the 1950's a man is supposed to have recovered coins from two powder-horns hidden in a Yarmouth quarry. When the refinery named Imperoyl was built near Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, old coins were recovered from a chest hidden within an old line fence. All of the above examples might be happenstance, but at Clam Harbour, Nova Scotia, a woman dreamed of buried treasure and persuaded a friend to search her dreamscape by light of day with "a mineral rod." This pair unearthed a copper baking pan filled with English sovereigns and concluded they had been helped by a guardian. At Apohaqui, New Brunswick, Major Studholm's grave was seen in a dream and this was taken as a clue to the presence of buried treasure on his Loyalist grant. The treasure seekers used a type of divining-rod which they referred to as "a mineral rod " "a short hollow device" which an observer said was "wrapped in whalebone." He went on to note that it had "two pliable handles attached to one end by which the operator held it." The contents of the rod were unknown, although this individual thought that it might contain "quicksilver", or mercury. In any event, the seekers found the stone seen in a guardian-generated dream and bound the treasure by drawing a circle about it with a steel sword. According to most accounts the treasure was recovered and removed Two residents of Indian Cove, Nova Scotia, went after treasure revealed in a dream, but as they approached the place a wraith-like longboat rowed by ten men cut in on the beach and they retreated. After a decent spell in hiding, they went back to the beach but there was nothing there but a hole in the ground at the place where they had been instructed to dig. More

interestingly, there were skid marks in the sand all the way to the water's edge, as if a heavy chest had been hauled to sea. At East Chezzetcook, Nova Scotia, another set of adventurers were kept from their prize by a similar apparition. This is very like an adventure faced a group of Bristol, New Brunswick men. They had gathered at the mouth of the Shiktahawk River at the point where it is tributary to the Saint John. They were digging on a river-plateau and had just hit wood with their shovels when they heard the sound oars turning in locks from far up the river. The sound increased in intensity and to their surprise there appeared on the river a viking long-ship complete with dragon figurehead. A crew appeared slouched behind ranks of round shields, their grim eyes staring at the shoreline. But the seekers eyes went particularly to a huge guardian who stood at the prow, golden hair streaming out in an unnatural wind. In a loud voice he directed a battle song towards the shore, and those standing there in incredulity, scattered. Often the dream-maker was very persuasive being intent on the business of escaping from the guardian-ship of wealth. Mr. Enos Hartlan of South East Passage, Nova Scotia, said that his mother had been plagued by the same dream "three nights runnin' and this was that there was treasure in back of Cow Bay. Yes she dreamed this dream three nights. The next night she had her work done she took her hoe and shovel and walked off through the woods. She found the spot all right and then she started digging, and had just dug a little bit of a hole when a groan came up out of it. She kept digging and soon there was another groan, and then she got timid, Her little dog had come with her and after a third groan my mother stopped. She told the dog to keep away and then she heard a jingling in the hole. She remembered then that she had spoken and that the ghost could no anything it wanted to her now. She was almost too frightened to run, but she did run...all the way home." Later she returned with help but nothing was found of her work and it was assumed that the treasure had "gone to earth". In seven years they came back looking for it but the location was now entirely lost the area having grown up in alder brush. At Parker's Cove, on the Fundy shore, another dreamer was advised to "drain Big Pond" if he wished to become wealthy. He made the attempt but was put off by the fact that the pond was located in a public place "too near to the road." This fellow missed his promise of "gold enough to make a chain that would go clear round the Province" but he was not the last to respond to a guardian. Very infrequently, guardian-spirits appear to have managed a full materialization; thus Mrs. Albert Foley met a substantial enough looking man who approached her three times telling her where to find wealth buried on an island near Salmon River: "There will be enough to make you and all this place rich, but you must fol-low instructions. You have to go at night on the second Tuesday of the month and there must be two people (with you). (You will be met by) a woman in white come with no head. She will try to get in the boat, but the other man must push the boat away and not let her in. She would try three times, and the third time it would be all right to take her in and then she will lead you to the treasure." After each appearance of this haunt, the Foleys decided against seeking the horde but "corpse candle" were often observed lighting that very island and it was thought likely that treasure remained beneath the surface of the ground. The appearance of "dead lights", "gophers", "jonahs", "jinxers", "jack-o'-lanterns", "jacks-atsea", "St. Elmo's fire", "fire-runners", or "fetches" was more usual than the temporary

rejuvenation of dead men. In Lunenburg County, Nova Scotia, Helen Creighton interviewed a man who said, "We used to see a bright light towards Tancook before a storm. There is supposed to be a treasure there." At Mahone Bay others noted seeing "fiery clam shells that turned to silver doubloons" which were taken as a similar omen. Again at First South it was said, "At Christmas we used to see a big light. It was round and would go and splash all about. There used to be money in the Narrows, but since people got the money the light hasn't been seen."; From Port Medway: "There had been a light above the place where treasure was found." At Rose Bay: Captain Kidd goes up the La Have River every seven years after his treasure. I met the ship in the river once...The light was down low. It was coming to meet us and when we got abreast of her she was all lit up. We couldn't see the ship, just the lights. From Lunenburg: "people were always seeing fires. Treasure was supposed to be buried here 99100 and there..." It has been noticed that gopher lights resemble leprechaun gold tending to disappear when the observer turns away. At Cow Bay an observer saw one which he guessed to be, "about the size of my radio (round and now obsolete radio)loud-speaker and it looked like a full moon dancing along a fence. There's treasure beneath that tree, that's why it lived, after all the others died." (Note that the spirit of those buried alive was often considered to take the form of a tree.) A privateer named Captain Hall once operated from the Fundy community now called Hall's Harbour, and his treasure was generally supposed to lie "on a bluff east of the wharf, about a half mile from the Harbour, on the side of a little brook, Sydney Brook its called." An individual who pursued this legendary horde watched as a stone levitated itself through the air and fall approximately where the treasure was supposed to be hidden. Later, two of his sons were chopping the slopes there when "a tree blowed down right on top of the hill, but when I went up there was no tree anywhere in sight. Then the boys seen a strange light and all at the same place; these things mean treasure!" This treasure was said partially recovered by a "man who got rich quick with no other way of accounting for it." Sometimes the lights chased seekers from the treasure pit. Thus, at a place two miles north of Dark Harbour, Grand Manan, a trio stood dumbfounded as "a shining object like a star shot over their heads and went down into the dig hole, frightening them away." The same thing is said to have happened to treasure seekers on the notorious Isle Haute: "The reason no one ever recovers it is that it's so hard to resist exclaiming out in shock, and disqualifying yourself, when a blinding flash of light emerges from the pit, and a headless pirate follows." A young farmer named Charles Enfield and A Micmac companion, rowed there hoping to get rich. The two were followed by Enfield's fiancee and her young brother. The seekers were on the island at midnight, on that one year in seven when the island moves to a new location. When this happens, it is said that the treasure rises for water, and may be taken from the unseen forces that guard it. It was noted that there were deafening local thunderstorms on the island on that

Creighton, Helen, Folklore of Lunenburg County, p. 5.

occasion, and the young woman arrived to find her intended partly comatose and so badly frightened he died in her arms. The Indian was never seen again and even her brother disappeared while on the island. The next day he was found wandering a neighbouring shore and was seen to be completely robbed of his sanity. Thunder and lighting are both traditionally tied to this kind of apparition and it is said that "in Mahone Bay, when they dig for treasure in a certain place it thunders, no matter how fine the day." Near Hudson's Point, at Port Wade, Nova Scotia, there were extra effects it being noticed that, "the ground trembled and the rocks shook." Just a little after this it was noticed that unexpected company stood among onlookers at the pit. All but one stubborn digger bolted, and he was transported directly into the waters of Annapolis Basin. At Victoria Beach a digger who heard thunder and felt the ground move soon found himself standing in a cavity up to his neck in water. At Clam Island, Nova scotia, an adventurer was not assailed but found himself suddenly paralysed from the neck down. At Shad Bay another disconcerted worker watched in horrible fascination as his spoked pry-bar was swallowed by a vortex of earth. Other phenomena have included the snake-like issue of a winding-sheet, or death-wrap, from out of the ground; "a great white thing" hanging in the air; unexpected cold winds from inappropriate quarters, and the vision of money turned to feathers or stones. My brother and I were once invited by a Maliseet to seek True's Gold. This typical tale of a guardianship was recounted to my brother and I many years ago when we operated Maritime Biological Laboratories in downtown Saint Stephen. Our collecting duties had been shortcircuited by day-long thundershowers and in the late afternoon we had time to listen to the story of a local Maliseet Indian. As his wife stood by, nursing a small child, while reading a comic book, he told us of an English privateer whose ship had floundered just outside of Letite Harbour. Through a good deal of effort,the pirate and his men removed treasure through the storm to the mainland. Several weeks later, with a hired team, he moved inland along the old road connecting Saint Andrews with Fredericton by way of Tracy Station. Somewhere south of Mount Pleasant, he paid off his crew and constructed an inn in the middle of the wilderness. At the turn of the nineteenth century a well used highway developed out of these woods between St. Andrews and Fredericton. This route had a branch that split off from Piskahegan and followed the Maguaguadavic River to St. George. Piskehegan was an important stop over point, being midway between St. Andrews, St. George and Fredericton. Josiah True arrived at that place just as a village was being set up; he cleared 35 acres and settled in as a farmerlumberman. As traffic along the road increased Josiah True and his wife opened their home as an inn and tavern. The bulk of his treasure was supposed to have been buried nearby, but he had no particular need of it since he became a successful hostler. True's wife died giving birth to their only son. Following this True's Inn became more of a drinking spot than a place of rest and it was rumoured that Josiah was into robbing his guests and even waylaying the stagecoach. There was even talk of murder and it could be seen that the old man mistreated his son, locking him in the cellar for days at a time. When True's son died he was not convicted of any crime, but he did pay for dissipation by becoming increasingly eccentric about his money, which some said he had cached about his property. In spite of all precautions he died at the St. George poorhouse separated from everything that had once held meaning for him.

Art and I had heard that digging for the treasure was a poor idea since snakes would appear dragging the treasure-seekers into the earth. Our Indian visitor at the Maritime Biological building on Water Street in St. Stephen had a different tale to tell. He claimed that at the privateer's death, the great-grandfather of our tale-teller was a day-labourer for the "Captain" and had deduced the location of the treasure beneath a tree which was a local land-mark. He had neither the courage , nor the wish to possess the wealth, leaving it buried but marking the location with a long steel rod against the day when the tree might fall. There were also Indian taboos against seeking the white-man's metals. The father of the speaker, decided to seek the treasure at a time when nothing remained but legend and the marker. Taking his son and another man with him, they went at night into a desolate bog and dug by lantern light, being careful to refrain from speaking. At five feet they encountered a layer of birch bark and carefully arranged logs, but beneath this there was nothing but an empty pit. Gathering their tools they were about to leave when a flame leaped upward and coalesced into a hand, which began to point northward. This they followed over a difficult path into the deep woods. At the base of a very large pine tree the hand pointed earthward, where it then vanished into the ground. The men were about to dig, when cackling laughter was heard nearby. Following after the hand, into the ground, with pick and shovels they gasped in horror when they found a severed, full-fleshed grey hand laying upon an oaken chest. This was sufficient to release the guardian spirit, which blasted them both from the hole in an upwelling of cold light. One of them bolted, shouted and ran at which there was a wholesale explosion of light, which put the other two to flight. They ran for their lives and returned by daylight to find the ground filled in and the pine tree a smouldering stump. Afterwards, they were neither able to locate the resting place of the treasure nor regenerate the ghost hand. It was their guess that white men might have better sympathy with this spirit of the dead. A puoin among the people had suggested that the wealth was reserved for white men, and our visitor invited us to participate in a renewed treasure-hunt, but we declined. Our long list of Maritime Devils might lead to the conclusion that there are few good spirits in the region, but we also give living space to New Saint Nicholas, who is as busy a bishop in his own diocese as the Devil himself. Good Saint Nick is the heir of the creative side of the AngloSaxon Allfather. He was anciently called Father Time, Father May, Father Yule and finally Father Christmas, the latter the least offensive to the newly-introduced Christian religion. In the beginning the northern month called Yoll, Yell, or Yule was considered sacred to the Finnish god Thor, but he was replaced by Frey (not to be mistaken with his female counterpart Freya). Father Yule was, therefore, a god-spirit representing Thor, Frey, or in a few instances Odin, whose Raging Host also rides at this season. The festival called the Yule-tide commenced with Mother Night, the longest of the year, and ended twelve days later. This month was once a time devoted to feasting and rejoicing as it heralded the return of the sun. The festival was perhaps called Yule (Noel in France) or Wheel, because the sun was seen as a orb of fire wheeling across the sky. Father Christmas is a more presentable version of Thor or Frey, a character often represented as the superintendent of festivities in medieval England. He appears to have had human counterparts at court, individuals who had real power in making arrangements for the Yule-tide. In northern England he was known as the Lord of the Bean or Bane and elsewhere as the Yuletide Fool. There is suspicion that he was originally a scapegoat for the god, an individual

put to death after a brief, but happy tenure over Twelfth-tide festivities. Santa Claus was first described as "a right jolly old elf", and has close relatives among the house bucks and the ho-ho men of Europe and North America. Like Santa, the ho-ho men wore red mantles, but had shorter tempers, striking dead those who laughed at their hearty "ho! ho! hohs!" The New Brunswick Courier introduced Saint Nicholas to New Brunswick on December 25, 1830. While Queen Mab was still stuffing stockings in the British colonies, the continental Saint Nicholas emigrated to the United States on the pen of Washington Irving: "...in the sylvan days of New Amsterdam, the good Saint Nicholas would often make his appearance in his beloved city, of a holiday afternoon, riding jollily among the tree-tops, or over the roofs of the houses, now and then drawing forth magnificent presents from his breeches-pockets, and dripping them down the chimneys of his favorites ... in these degenerate days of iron and brass, he never shows us the light of his countenance, nor ever visits us, save on one day in the year, when he rattles down the chimneys of the descendants ... confining his presents to the children...." Tristam Coffin says Diedrich Knickerbocker's (Irving's "nickname") A History of New York of 1809, contained two dozen references to the good saint, including the immortal line, "laying a finger beside his nose...." This was later incorporated into a poem written by Henry Livingston Jr, of Dutchess County, New York. Tristam Coffin suspects this ditty was heard, and carried home to Clement Clarke Moore, who published it anonymously in the Troy "Sentinel" in 1823. He made no claims of authorship until after it had been printed in New Brunswick, placing it under his own name in an anthology published in 1844. It is an interesting aside that a handwritten copy of this manuscript is on deposit at the New Brunswick Legislative Library. Once Clement Moore published A Visit From Saint Nicholas in eighteen forty-eight the medieval England Father Christmas no longer dominated the Yule, being replaced by Santa Claus. He was represented as being totally elf-like being able to shape-change, dematerializing to squeeze through flues and chimneys. Remember that he drove "a miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer?" Santa Claus was first represented, in drawings for A Visit From Saint Nicholas, as wearing a sailor's linen trousers, high boots and the turned-coat of the European peasant. He was every Victorian child's exotic sea-going great-uncle, a pipe smoker, who brought small gifts from distant lands; a person "dressed all in fur from his head to his foot...." His appearance changed when he was redrawn by Thomas Nast for a later edition published in eighteen sixty-three. At that time he began to gain weight. Three years later the artist renamed him using the shortened "Santa Claus" when he submitted drawings of the "Old Fellow" for inclusion in "Harper's Magazine". By eighteen eighty he had grown unaccountably taller. Animal rights activists had nothing to do with the rejection of his traditional fur coat for one of flannel in the eighteen nineties. Blue was the colour preferred by King Odin and this was taken up by both Father Christmas and Santa Claus. But Santa Clause went through a phase when he could not decide what colour suited him. Through all of these indecisive years Santa

Claus did retain the ermine fringe which was the mark of northern royalty. The standard red suit with a plain white fur fringe did not become stylish for him until after World War One. For many years it was considered that Santa Claus resided at the North Geographic Pole, but when geographer Arthur Wiggington was mapping the New Brunswick Highlands in 1963 he stumbled on several gates to the underworld while exploring North Pole Stream in the north central region of the province. North Pole Mountain is located north of the stream and has an elevation of two thousand two hundred and fifty feet. It is believed to be a hollow hill and directly south of it is Mount Saint Nicholas as well as Mounts Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen. Winter is one of the dominant factors in Canada. It is not sur-prising that winter commands its own feasts. We have noted that female figures sometimes held the foreground, Queen Mab and the Cailleach Bheur having ruled the Maritime winter before Santa Claus came to our shores. Interestingly, there was a Teutonic goddess who predated Santa, and she was directly related to Odin. The replacement of Queen Mab and Mother Goody came rather quickly after the introduction of Santa Claus although remnants still lingered into the 1940s I became aware of her through a small rite practised in my own home at Saint Stephen, New Brunswick, while I was a child. My mother, Lois Muriel Mackay (this belief was from her parents, who were Guptills, or Gubtaels, former residents of lowland Germany now living on Grand Manan Island, N.B.) carried on this tradition. She believed that Mother Goody attended the last day of Christmas, supplying very young children who had shown "reasonable behaviour" during the Yule with goody-goodies (small gifts and sweets). While others gave attention to the gift-giving of Santa Claus, I came to expect an additional New Year's Eve visit from Mother Goody. Goody-goodies were an offshoot of Yule or Gode-cakes. They were confections, which is what the Mackay brothers usually received when they examined stockings hung over the New Year's Eve. According to an anonymous respondent the gift was left on New Year's Eve and the practice was known in Amherst, N.S. and Moncton, N.B. until the 1940s. This corresponds with the remembrances of an Amherst woman who said that they had always had a visit from "Mrs. 100101 (pp 216-217). This Claus" on New Year's Eve, when a small gift was expected. female elf seems a little like brownie except that she is not present at other times of the year. Moder Gode, or Mother Goody (from moder; mother + gode; fitting or belonging together) seems to have come from Teutonic origins. Goody is probably a contraction of goodwife, a civil address formerly reserved for married women of "low station". This was not always the case, as she seems to derive from Frau Gode or Wode, the female equal of the German god Woden. It can be guessed that this character corresponds exactly with Freya, Woden's wife. In ancient times she was "considered the harbinger of great prosperity". Her time was the twelve days of Yuletide, when she mounted her white stallion, transformed her attendants into wild beasts, and led the Wild Hunt in its search for the souls of dead mortals.


Herbert Halpert, A Folklore Sampler From the Maritimes, p. 216.

While Odin was the god of the biting north-wind, Freya was considered the goddess of the clouds, and wore snow-white or dark garments according to her ever-changing moods. Freya was the patroness of domestic love and housewives and the protector of children. Although worshipped as Freya in southern Germany and Scandinavia, she was represented under many other names: Holda, Hulda, Frau Holle, Eastre, Bertha, the White Lady, Frou-elden, Frau Venus, Nerthus (Mother Earth), and Ostara, to mention a few. Irrespective of the name her character was consistent: She presided over the weather, and dispensed valuable gifts, particularly flax, which she gave to mankind, teaching women to spin and weave the material. This corresponds with what I recall being told of Mother Goody; I recall being told that when Mother Goody hung her wash rain fell upon earth, and when she fluffed out her blankets and shook her pillows snow followed. She was also said to be a skilled weaver and when the clouds arranged themselves in parallel bands, she was supposed to have been busy at her loom. As she was particularly interested in the use made of her gift, Mother Gode was said to flit through every German village during the Yule-tide, peering into every window to inspect the spinning done in each household. If the work was up to standard the goddess left a distaff of especially fine flax, or even one filled with golden threads. The careless spinner could expect other treatment: either her wheel broken, or her flax despoiled while slovenly people of either sex might find themselves transported through the air to a dung-heap or the centre of the nearest river. Those who failed to honour Frau Gode sometimes escaped notice if the ate a portion of the Gode-cake during each of the twelve days. The Gode-cakes were made of the dominant grain in each region, and were baked before daybreak on Yule morning. In Scotland, this Yule bread was of oatmeal and one was given to each member of the family, who attempted to keep it intact until the evening feast. If it remained whole, the owner expected unbroken prosperity.