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Discover, explore & remember the traditions of Newfoundland’s Cape Shore.

Explore the
Cape Shore

Listen to songs, music & stories. View photos of the people & places. Meet the singers & musicians from Ship Cove, Patrick’s Cove, St Bride’s, and Branch. This interactive map of the Cape Shore is a great way to start navigating your way around the outports of this short stretch of Newfoundland’s coastline.

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Placentia

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Ship's Cove

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Patrick's Cove

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St. Bride's

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Cape St. Mary's

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Branch

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Discover & Explore

The bonny bunch of roses

Tom Murphy & Minnie Murphy

The bonny bunch of roses / Tom Murphy & Minnie Murphy

The bonny bunch of roses, song (By the margin of the ocean, one morning in the month of June …) The lyrics of this ballad take the form of a conversation between Napoleon Bonaparte’s widow and his son. She warns her son of the danger of challenging England, Ireland, and Scotland—the bonny bunch of roses—and the folly of attacking Russia.  It is quite similar to another version of this song collected from Anthony Power in the neighbouring town of Branch by Aidan O’Hara. Tom and Minnie Murphy’s version of this song is remarkable as an example of duet singing, a practice that is comparatively rare in traditional Newfoundland singing. 

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Cuslett, Placentia Bay, Newfoundland, ca. 1975 / Aidan O'Hara

Cuslett, Placentia Bay, Newfoundland, ca. 1975 / Aidan O'Hara

Cuslett is a small community on the Cape Shore. Aidan never stopped there for the purpose of collecting, just passed through.

The forest was covered in bushes

Patsy Judge

The forest was covered in bushes / Patsy Judge

The forest was covered in bushes, song (One night as the moon it shone bright and shone clear …) Elsewhere this song is known as “The False-hearted lover,” “A week before Easter,” and “The false bride.” It tells the story of a man whose sweetheart marries someone else. The protagonist witnesses the marriage and consummation before announcing that he will die of a broken heart. The text was published as a broadside as early as 1690; it was recorded widely during the 20th century.

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A stormy day on the Cape Shore, ca. 1976 / Aidan O'Hara

A stormy day on the Cape Shore, ca. 1976 / Aidan O'Hara

Cape St Mary's is visible in the distance.

Joyce O'Hara and her children at the first Newfoundland Folk Festival, 1977 / Aidan O'Hara

Joyce O'Hara and her children at the first Newfoundland Folk Festival, 1977 / Aidan O'Hara

Joyce, Kathleen (hidden), and Conor O'Hara sitting in the front row at the 1977 Newfoundland Folk Festival.

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