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The History of St Martins


The early settlers soon found out that ship-building was the one important industry. Daniel Vaughan, grandfather of Benjamin
was one of the first to make a move in this direction. Captain David Vaughan, son of Daniel Vaughan, went
to Gagetown and bought a schooner called the 'Rose' about 30 tons register. He took command of it himself and sailed for
Eastport, Maine. This was during the American War of 1812. The vessel was captured by an American privateer; the crew made prisoners; and the vessel placed in charge of a prize crew. Shortly after it was recaptured by the English cruiser 'Plumper'; the crew taken off, and the Captain allowed to return home with his vessel.

The first keel laid in St Martins was that of the schooner 'Rachael' about 30 to 35 tons register. It was built by Captain Daniel
and named after his wife Rachael. The foreman, or master builder was a Frenchman named Tellar. When the 'Rachael' was built the people said it would be the last vessel ever built at Quaco, as they said they could never get enough timber to build another. It might be of interest to modern men to note that, in building the frames of these vessels, it was necessary to procure from from the woods, a stick crooked enough to make the required shape from keel to gunwhale, because at this time, the shipbuilders hadn't conceived the idea of building the frames in sections, as they did later on. The keel would first be laid, then the stern and sternpost raised and filled in between with timbers, and raised with handspikes.

The keel of the 'Rachael' was cut from a birch tree which stood in the centre of the village, now known as Hodsmythe's Corner. If this ancient specimen of naval architecture could be resurrected and placed alongside one of the first class ships now built on the Clyde, people would see a marvelous contrast. After the 'Rachael' was launched, there followed the 'Rainbow' and 'Ambassador'. From that time forward to the year 1880, one or more vessels was launched every year, varying in size from 18 to 1800 tons register. During the year 1863, 18 vessels were in the course of construction at the same time. The names of men actively engaged in ship-building during its early history were: David Vaughan, Thomas Vaughan, James H. Moran, (who had built in St Martins, 23 sailing vessels, registering
in all 22,558 tons.)

Sailing vessels built in St Martins by James H. Vaughan were: Ocean wave (890T); Beau Monde (1146T); Merrie Monarch (1400T); Prince Arthur (991T); Prince Charles (1347T); Prince Victor (1221T); Prince George (1200T); Slieve Bloom (980T); Regent (1340T); Prince Leopold (1300T); Crown Prince (969T); Prince Patrick (1059T); Prince Rudolph (1400T); Chanticlear (580T); Onisiphorus (32T), Cheviot (215T); Active (132T); Prince Louis (14T); and Wave (50T).

Among other ship-builders were: Samuel and Thomas Carson, Jacob Bradshaw, Joseph Brown, James Mclean, Captain John Marr, Captain Benjamin Wishart, William Vale, and later on, A. Parks and son and Messers W.H. and James Rourke.

Even though at this period Quaco had become a thriving settlement and already had commenced a business which made it the most extensive ship-building centre on the Bay of Fundy, there was no direct way of getting there except by water. There was a roundabout way by driving to Hampton and thence on horseback through the woods, but all the frieght and most passengers went by sailboat or schooner to Saint John. The road as far as Loch Lomond had been opened for a considerable time and people had commenced to settle there. The following is the first account of the opening of the road through to Quaco: On the 9th of June, 1818, Messers John Marr, Philip Mosher, James Moran, and Issac Springstead were appointed commissioners for surveying the road from Loch Lomond to Quaco. 3