The Heritage Corner, Springhill Record

March 14th, 2012

Jewkes Store

November 2, 1972 – Springhill Record

Here is an article written by Elaine Mont entitled The Grand Old Lady of the West End

     Historically speaking, our town is not very old – at least not in comparison with many towns in the British Isles, Europe or Asia. The first three settlers came here in 1790 and took up homesteads in the Herrett Road area, - so you might say our town is 182 years old.  One hundred and eighty-two years entitles us to some “pioneers.”  On such pioneer business man was Joseph Jewkes, who came here from River Hebert in 1879. 

    In 1880 he built the Jewkes homestead and opened a store in the front room.  His sole inventory was a supply of pit caps and McKenna’s Pictou Twist.  This, you might say, was the embryo of a business which has been known as “Jewkes’s Store” for the past 92 years.  Later Mr. Jewkes moved to the lower end of Herrett Road, built a small store, and added on to it as business expanded, until it became the size it is today.  He took his sons A.R. Jewkes and James H. Jewkes into business with him.  Joseph Jewkes died June 6, 1914, his good wife, Rebecca Simpson Jewkes, having April 21st of that same year. 

    His sons, Art and Jim carried on the business.  Art was 13 and in grade seven when he quit school, but he had an uncanny business sense and even at that young age went to the Truro wholesalers to do the firms buying.  It is interesting to note that Jewkes Brothers have been Imperial Oil dealers since 1900, although in the past few years they have only sold kerosene.  In 1948 they were still selling gas and oil and received a fine plaque for long and faithful service to the company.  Art died November 8, 1930 and his brother, Jim, died in September 1933.  But the old building remained in family hands for Art’s sons, Arthur M. and Joe V. were left to carry on.  Joe V. passed away October 5, 1946 and Art has carried on alone. 

    With the changing times, the pressure of small business to compete with large chain stores, and Art’s far from robust health, he felt the time for a change had come.  But a business that grew up with the community, and which for 92 years has served the townspeople with courtesy, fairness and unquestioning loyalty, through mine disasters, strikes, wars, and depressions.  Art decided he would sell the business and is happy it will remain in the family. (The rest of the article is missing.)

     Arthur Maxwell Jewkes died September 11, 1974 at the age of 61.  Jewkes Store burned in a fire in 1975.

Springhill RecordWhere Our Roots are date unknown

An early Springhill paper speaks of a man being drowned in Higgin’s Pond in 1890.  This was a man-made pond in what is now the Springhill Industrial Site.  People who remember where the fire doors of the Boiler Plant were at the Cumberland Railway and Coal Company can visualize its exact location.  The company hauled water from large tanks from East Southampton and stored it in this man-made lake.  The fatality is the only one that ever occurred there.

     William Stevens once supplied water to parts of Springhill and advertised in the local paper.  He had a large tank that held approximately 1,400 gallons of water.  It was situated on the lot across from the H.A. B. Glendenning home.  The free flow of water which supplied water to this tank still rises in the town streets and water building.

February 1977 First school winter carnival

     In answer to our question last week as to when the Springhill High School held its first Winter Carnival, a former school principle, David B. Dickson, arrived at the Record Office and loaned us the school year book from 1968-1969, which tells us all about the first carnival, “Frost Bite ’69.”

     The highlight of this carnival was the crowning of the first carnival queen, Frances Terris, Kathryn Gilbert, was chosen first princess and Joanne Hunter, second princess.

     This carnival also began the first snow sculptures, which has steadily progressed, so that today we are getting some really fine sculptures.

     We also note that in the school year 1968-’69, Ricky MacLeod was the editor of the year book, who in his editorial spoke of the boys (Robert Niles, Carl Alick, Gerry Roy, Waldo Church and Ricky MacLeod) who did so well on the TV series: Reach For The Top,” and of the successes of the soccer team, which became the North Nova Scotia Champions and entered the Nova Scotia “Headmasters” finals.