Wilson Vardy Diaries

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Scope and Content: The Wilson Vardy Diaries were authored by Wilson Vardy, harbour master and lightkeeper at Vardy's Island at Channel and Port aux Basques, Newfoundland, and include a daily account of the weather, entries and clearances of vessels at Port aux Basques, ice conditions, and sparse comments relating to the fishery and residents of the Port aux Basques area. The 1919 diary also contains a couple of entries dated 1920, 1921, 1935 and 1938. The 1907 diary contains an entry dated 1930. The entries dated after 1921 were not written by Wilson Vardy.

Dates: 1900-1919

Adm. Hist/Bio. Sketch: Wilson Vardy (1858-1921), harbour master and light keeper, was born in Channel, Newfoundland, the eighth of ten children of John Vardy (from Christchurch, England) and wife, Lucy. Wilson's father, John, died on 28 December 1861 of suspected foul play. Wilson Vardy married Jane Meade on 11 February 1881 and the couple had eight children. Wilson was buried 21 December 1921 at the old Anglican cemetery at Graveyard Point, Port aux Basques.

Vardy worked as harbour master and light keeper on Vardy's Island at Channel and Port aux Basques from 1899 until his death in 1921. He was in charge of the leading lights and buoys, which had been established in 1898/9. These consisted of a front light, a rear light, and a series of buoys which were removed during winter to avoid drift ice.