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Nova Scotia Provincial Heritage Fair
The Sawmilling Industry in Newfoundland
My project is about the early 20th century loggers in Newfoundland. My research focused on how they lived and how they worked.
What was the most interesting thing you learned about your topic?
That over 100 loggers could live in one bunk house which was often dirty and damp. They spent between 5 to 9 months away from their families. Their food consisted of beans, fish, salt beef, pork, pea soup, porridge, and tea.
What important lessons have you learned that you want to share with other Canadians?
I learned that the workers for the sawmills had very dangerous jobs. Also, most of the loggers were underpaid. They were paid by cords of wood. For example in 1926 a logger was paid around $2.40 for each cord he cut.
How would you compare your life today to the lives of those studied in your project?
Now they have computer controlled sawmills. Years ago, they used to do it all by hand. The loggers now get paid more to do the same job. They use machines now instead of horses.