Monthly Archives: December 2015

Devil’s Jackstone Coated with Dogberries!

Brief as it was, an enjoyable fall visit to Newfoundland yielded a chance to stop by a Kelligrews landmark modestly resting by the side of the Conception Bay Highway. Local people have long regarded it with awe as one of the Devil’s Jackstones. Tradition holds that five of them adorn the landscape in the Kelligrews area. Largest and most spectacular of them all is the giant boulder lying at the water’s edge on the beach close to Pond Road in Kelligrews.

A third jackstone can reportedly be found on Seal Cove Beach and a fourth lies on wooded land close to Holloway Place in what used to be called Lower Gullies. Location of a fifth Jackstone has yet to be found.

The highway-bordering stone squats partly on private land on the north side of the road not far from the Lawrence Pond Road. Snugly bordered by colourful dogberry trees, the great rock resembles perhaps an apian ancestor blithely surveying the steady flow of traffic. Straggling a fence line, it likely gains little attention from by passing motorists. A little blue pin presumably identifies the rock for the geologist fraternity – perhaps they can share what it says.

But where is that fifth Devil’s Jackstone?P1060278PcapW P1060282PcapW P1060283PcapW P1060289PcapW P1060292P-(2)capW01Nfld507_jackstonePW - Copy

A Most Unexpected Surprise

A passage in my Gower Street memoir includes a brief account of a chance encounter while sharing a cabin aboard the ferry Burgeo bound from Port aux Basques to North Sydney in December 1953. It was one of those rare occasions when I kept a journal detailing some of my experiences.

These notes about what was otherwise described as a “long boring trip” included this excerpt:

“…in cabin with old man named Eddy from Stephenville. Well off. Talked about having incurable ailment in leg 40 years ago, then ‘The Lord healed it.’ He heard the Lord’s call. Had no money.  Lord told him to go home to Placentia Bay. He had 60 cents. One friend gave him $3, another, $4 – just enough for the fare home. He preached there (Pentecostal type.) Had no education.  Doesn’t drink or smoke. Hasn’t been sick since he was healed.”

Out of the blue, it seems, this passage caught the eye of Gower Street reader Burton Janes of Bay Roberts who not only recognized the gentleman described, but also came up with the attached photo. Eddy, Herbert0003cap

A writer and author of several books in his capacity as historian of the Pentecostal Assemblies of Newfoundland and Labrador, he immediately identified my cabin roommate:

“His name was Herbert Eddy. He was born in 1883 and died in 1959. He was from Arnold’s Cove. He was one of the earliest Pentecostals in Newfoundland. He claimed to have been healed of a crippling disease at Bethesda Mission, on (New) Gower Street in St. John’s. He operated a sawmill at Come-by-Chance. In 1925, he and another Pentecostal layman went to Corner Brook and started a Pentecostal mission. Years later, he lived in Stephenville, where his son, Lewis, founded another Pentecostal Church. I guess that was when you met the older man on the boat from Port aux Basques to North Sydney.”

Burton Janescap

Burton Janes’ books include: A Russian Adventure, The King of Baffin Island (written with the late John Parsons), The History of the Pentecostal Assemblies of Newfoundland and other titles related to the denomination’s founders and individual assemblies.  An ordained minister for 35 years, he is a freelance writer and editor, book reviewer and blogger.  For further details, check out