Monday, 23 May 2022

Fredericton, NB's Tomato Soup Ghost


The second wife of Bishop John Medley, first Bishop of Fredericton NB was Margaret Hudson Medley. Well educated and independent, she was a choral singer, gardener, botanist, lithographer, horseback rider, and ice skater. It was rumoured that prior to her marriage she served alongside fellow nurse Florence Nightingale in the Crimean war.

Margaret survived her husband and was fiercely protective of his reputation. When she passed in 1905 at the age of 84, she was entombed beside him beneath the Cathedral's elaborate east window. 

Busy as she had been in life she did not rest long.

Reports circulated of a woman in a white dress floating through the grounds. The first written account appeared in 1975 when a worker reported a veiled spirit walking down Church Street and entering via the west door.

Most often, Margaret is seen seated or kneeling in prayer, but she is also partial to playing the church's magnificent pipe organ.  To this day she still walks the path from their house to the Cathedral bringing her husband supper, as there have been numerous inexplicable incidents of people smelling tomato soup.

She has also been spotted standing at the pulpit as if delivering a sermon, a fitting spot to spend eternity for a bishop's wife.

Listen to the story on TikTok



Friday, 6 May 2022

Beware the Boo-Beggars of Springdale, Hall's Bay.

Image source: https://collections.mun.ca/digital/collection/elrcdne/id/5619/rec/15

You better be good or else the Boo Beggers will get you.

Up to the mid-20th century and possibly later, mothers in Springdale, Newfoundland, would warn their children to keep away from the wharf head with threats of the Boo Beggars.

A Boo Beggar is a said to be a supernatural creature related to the fairies in Newfoundland folklore, but usually only seen as a ghost-like black shadow. It’s often found living in wells or other dangerous places.

Their dark and devilish cousins Boo Darbies and Boo Men haunted other parts of the island, and in modern english, we still use the word “Boogeyman” to mean something regarded as an object of fear.  

NEW! Explore the legend of the Boo Beggars on TikTok!


Wednesday, 30 March 2022

Save the date: Place Names of Newfoundland and Labrador LIVE April 6th



Save the date! I'll be on Facebook Live on April 6th talking about the weird and wonderful stories behind the Place Names of Newfoundland and Labrador! 




Sunday, 6 March 2022

Place Names of Newfoundland and Labrador - From Dildo to Dover with Dale Jarvis


The launch of my latest project is getting closer and closer! Over the pandemic, I've been working on a new book, all about the dirt behind the place names of Newfoundland and Labrador's towns and cities. 

Toponymy, toponymics, or toponomastics is the study of the place names of a region or a language, and we have a lot of fascinating stories behind the names of provincial places. It's been a treat to get to dig deep into the legends and lore behind the names of places, from Appleton to Zoar.  

No date set yet for the official release, but you can preorder through the fine folks at Flanker Press:

https://flankerpress.com/product/place-names-of-newfoundland-and-labrador 

and you can follow along and post your reviews on Goodreads (and add me!):

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/60475254-place-names-of-newfoundland-and-labrador