Aspen Cove, Newfoundland and Labrador

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Aspen Cove is a small fishing community in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. Formerly called Aspey or Apsey Cove, Aspen Cove was named for the presence of aspen trees in the area. It first appears in the 1857 Census as Apsey Cove with a population of thirteen, all dependent on the salmon fishery. By the 1870s more families moved to Aspen Cove for the cod and lobster fisheries. In the 1921 census the population had reached 104 and the economy had changed from salmon, fur, and agriculture to cod, lobster, and lumbering.[1]


Located in the mouth of Hamilton Sound between Carmanville to the west and Musgrave Harbour to the east, the settlement is situated in the only protected area behind a small headland on the northwest side. It is believed that the name is derived from the aspen trees that were once abundant in the area.


The first recorded census of settlers in this community is in the 1857 census with thirteen inhabitants of one family whose living depended on the salmon fishery. According to local belief, from oral tradition, the first settlers of Aspen Cove discovered remains of a Beothuk encampment on the shores of the cove.

The first settler was from Fogo, a Robert Shelly (later Shelley) born at Hampshire, England who originally came to settle at Barr'd Islands. The first postmistress was Edith Tulk.

Church History

From 1857 to 1874 all the inhabitants at Aspen Cove were Church of England. However, once Methodism was introduced in Aspen Cove, many people either turned to Methodism or more Methodists moved there. By 1902 a Methodist school-chapel was built; a new church was built in 1964. In the 1950s there were also some Jehovah's Witnesses living in Aspen Cove, but the population was mainly United Church.

Census Information

Censuses up to, and including, that undertaken in 1945 were conducted by the Dominion of Newfoundland government. Upon joining Canada in 1949, all censuses since have been conducted by Statistics Canada.

1857 1869 1874 1911 [2] 1921 [3] 1935 [4]
Population 13 19 8 26 28 23
Church of England 13 19 8 20 17 -
People catching/curing fish 3 3 2 4 2 -
Seamen/fishermen 3 2 1 10 5 -
Fishing rooms in use 1 1 1 - - 16
Total boats 1 2 1 - - 12
Nets and seines 3 7 3 - - 8
Salmon cured 6 (tres) - 10 (tres) - - -
Potatoes produced (barrels) 80 83 50 - - 1,665 bsh
Turnip produced (barrels) 12 6 - - - 214
Neat cattle 7 - - - - -
Milch cows 4 3 1 - - -
Butter produced 112 lbs - 15 lbs - - 96 lbs

Directory Information

  • Lovell's Newfoundland Directory.[5]

Aspey cove, a small fishing settlement in the Twillingate and Fogo district. The population in 1871 was 14.

§ John Robinson, Fisherman

§ Robert Shelly, Fisherman

Interesting facts

  • In the late 1880s, R. Wellon, T. Wellon, West, Goodyear, and Tuck were listed as the board members for the District of Fogo Outport Road Board for Ladle and Aspey Coves.[6]

See also


External links