History

Named Mortier Bay until 1909, the area today known as Marystown, was named after the key aspects of the location – wide, deep, ice-free harbour. The community was first settled because of its proximity to abundant fishing grounds, good farm land and the availability of timber. Early settlers also were attracted to this area because of the ideal harbour and is to be considered one of the largest ice-free harbours in eastern North America. The deep water, ice-free harbour coupled with the strategic location of the port, led to a strategic role for the area during World War II. The only Newfoundland warships were built in Marystown and the area was the focal point for the British Navy. The shipbuilding tradition of Marystown, predates settlement. Documents from the early 1800s identify ship building in the area.

Marystown has always been an industrious community. Shipbuilding and the fishery have been the mainstays of the economy in the area. This has created a highly skilled workforce that has an established heritage working in the marine industrial sector. Dating back to the 1800s, roots were established by early setters due to the deep water, ice-free harbour. These attributes of the harbour place it among North America’s most attractive commercial locations and among the best natural harbours on the Eastern Seaboard. A robust commercial history is the result when you combine this with the industrial heritage.

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