&nsp; Episode 1

Bill and Winston MacDonald

  1. A long association with Maritime Packers
  1. Chapter Reference

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A long association with Maritime Packers

One of the stories related by Bill MacDonald is how his maternal great grandmother, Lib (1833 - 1940), helped establish Maritime Packers by providing the venture capital to Sam Broidy to build the factory at Caribou Harbour. Lib came from Scotland and settled in the small community of Welsford outside of River John. It is not known whether she made her money in Canada or brought it with her. She would have been an early example of a liberated woman as she was an entrepreneur and shipbuilder. Apparently she was a 'grand lady' meaning she wore elaborate hats and fine clothes and travelled everywhere in a covered carriage.

Sam Broidy was a merchant based in River John. In the late 1890s he got into the lobster canning business in River John and had small factories in nearby MacDonald's Cove and Skinners Cove. At the time a lobster factory was a small operation, little more than a domestic kitchen. Broidy started buying up these smaller operations but clearly had the foresight and ambition to consolidate these into something larger. It was likely that getting a bank loan at that time would have been difficult so obtaining the financing for his larger enterprise from another entrepreneur would have been more characteristic of how business was done at the time.

Maurice MacDonald originally wanted to be a ship's Captain and joined the Coast Guard at a young age. His mother, Maude, worked for Maritime Packers overseeing the women who were recruited each season to work in the factory processing the lobster. Maude encouraged Maurice to make his career with Maritime Packers and he did so although he eventually received his captain's papers and captained two of Maritime Packers small ships, the Billy R and the Samuel B.


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