9692 | Market Slip, Saint John, New Brunswick

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Market Slip, Saint John, New Brunswick
About 1863, 19th century
Albumen print mounted on card
20.6 x 24.5 cm
Gift of the Wilhelmina Smith Estate
This artefact belongs to: © New Brunswick Museum
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Keys to History

Saint John, New Brunswick, the home city of the Jack family, was a hive of activity in the mid-19th century. It was both the social and economic centre of the province. Along with lumbering and agriculture, shipbuilding and shipping provided great wealth to New Brunswick. Market Slip, on the shore of Saint John's harbour, was one of the province's primary import and export facilities. It is also traditionally identified as the landing site of the first contingent of United Empire Loyalists on May 18, 1783. Lined on both sides with stores and businesses, Market Slip played a key role in the economic life of the city and the province. Seen here at high tide, with sailing vessels tied to the wharves and wagons lining the adjoining square, Market Slip is bustling with activity. Cargoes need to be loaded or unloaded from vessels, and passengers await their boarding times. Unemployed labourers and sailors often gathered in the area with the hope of finding work.

  • What

    A sloven, pictured here, was a horse-drawn four-wheeled cart with a low platform that made loading and unloading easier.

  • Where

    This view was taken from an upper floor of the building on the corner of Prince William Street and King Street, Saint John, New Brunswick.

  • When

    This photograph was given in 1926 by the Wilhelmena Smith Estate to the Natural History Society, the forerunner of the New Brunswick Museum.

  • Who

    Paul Bedell surveyed and laid out the plan for Saint John, including Market Slip, in 1783.