Bonavist Line, The
DESCRIPTION: An old man tells of the workers' hardships imposed by the "red roaring devil" management while building the line. Outrageous amounts are charged for trivial services. Awful food: pork can drive you mad and flour is like lime. The old man will quit
EARLIEST DATE: 1951 (MUNFLA/Leach)
KEYWORDS: sex food hardtimes railroading nonballad worker
FOUND IN: Canada(Newf)
REFERENCES (3 citations):
Peacock, pp. 768-771, "The Bonavist Line" (2 texts, 2 tunes)
Leach-Labrador 92, "Riverhead Line" (1 text, 1 tune)
ADDITIONAL: Roger deV. Renwick, _Recentering Anglo/American Folksong: Sea Crabs and Wicked Youths_, University Press of Mississippi, 2001, pp. 82-83, "The Bonavist Line" (1 text)
Bernard Houlihan, "Shoal Harbour Line" (on MUNFLA/Leach)
James John, "The North Shoreman's Line" (on MUNFLA/Leach)
The North Shoreman's Line
The Shoal Harbour Line
NOTES: Peacock says the Bonavista Line serving the tip of the Bonavista peninsula and Riverhead Line serving Conception Bay are spurs of Newfoundland's now defunct narrow-gauge trans-insular railway.
Whichever branch line is in question, the complaints are the same. Sometimes the old man is omitted and the complaints are the singer's own.
For the history and a map of the Newfoundland railroad branch lines see "The Branch Lines" at http://www.heritage.nf.ca/articles/economy/railway-branch-lines.php, accessed Febraury 25, 2017. According to that article the Bonavista Line operated from 1911 until 1983. - BS
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