For an in-depth account of Peterview's history including exclusive interviews and pictures, consider purchasing "Peterview: History and Recollections".
This book was created by the Heritage Society of Peterview and was researched and written by Al Wurdeman.
Peterview: History and Recollections can be purchased at the Town Hall, local businesses, or at the Post Office for $15.00 CAD. You can also order and make shipping arrangements by calling Venus Samson at (709) 257-2926 or by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Among all of the towns in the Central Newfoundland area, Peterview was one of the first to be incorporated. It is a historic site because of its original residents: the Beothuck, who had settled at Wigwam Point.
The Beothuck were the first settlers and first residents of Peterview. Their wigwams were set up at Sandy Point, which is presently known as Wigwam Point. The Beothuck were seen as savages by the European voyagers because they stole their fish, equipment, and materials, which eventually led to hostility between the two races. Because of this resentment during the 1700's, John Peyton appeared before the reigning government in St. John's and proposed that the Micmac tribe (a more war-like people) be brought in from Nova Scotia to kill off the Beothuck.
Permanent Settlement and Growth
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Upon returning to Peterview in 1790, John Peyton built the first home. This started the first real settlement in Dominion Point (now known as Peterview). Between 1790 and 1830, John Peyton and his family worked in the farming and fishing industries. It's unsure, but there may have been other people living here or coming in from other places to help John Peyton and his family.
In 1830, a French lumber mill was built in Dominion Point. Its exact location is unknown, but this mill exported timber to St. John's where it was used to make paper. It was shipped all the way to St. John's because it was there that the main port in Newfoundland was located.
Over the next two years, the community of Dominion Point began to thrive and the first general store was built. It was owned and operated by Mr. Lewis and Mr. Winsor. The original store records are still in existence, at the Peterview Heritage Museum.
In 1862, another French lumber mill was built at the same location that Mrs. Frank Taylor is presently living. It was operated by a company from Quebec, and exported lumber to St. John's by schooner.
First Civic Construction
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From 1862 to 1884, no records exist of what happened, but it is known that in 1884, the population of Dominion Point was 32. Over the next 6 years, the population grew enough that a Prayer House (Barracks) was built in 1910 by the citizens from their own logs. In 1911, the first Salvation Army officer, Lieutenant Sweetapple, was appointed. He also became the first school teacher and taught in the Prayer House, which substituted as a school at that time.
Between 1911 and 1940, the population grew enough to support the operation of the first school, under the direction of Envoy R. W. Abbott. The school taught from Kindergarten to Grade 11.
In 1951, Dominion Point was renamed Peter's Arm South, by R. W. Abbott, who happened to be a clergyman, teacher and first chairman of the council.
In 1963, the school was deliberately burnt down by arsonists and a new structure was built and opened in 1965. This school was permanently closed in June, 1995, as the result of many government cutbacks.
In May of 1964, a water line was connected from Botwood, and the water was officially turned on. At the time, it went as far as George Keefe's, and was completed as far as Herbert Hibbs' a couple of years later. The road was paved as far as George Keefe's in 1967 and completed to Wigwam Point a couple of years later. It was completely repaved in 2001.
During 1964 and 1965, Peterview's first Fire Brigade was formed, with the first Chief being Harry Pope.
The Town Hall was built through Federal government projects over a period of years, beginning in 1972.
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On October 23, 1956, the first Community Welfare Committee was set up to take care of the affairs of the community. This was the beginning of the community council. The members of the first committee were:
|R.W. Abbott, Chairman||Henry O. Peyton|
|William Hibbs||Edgar Budgell|
|Harry Pope||Leslie Sansome|
The appointed council continued until November, 1982, when the first general election was held. The first members to be elected were:
|Calvin Hibbs, Mayor||Kenneth Sheppard|
|Scott Sansome, Deputy Mayor||Eric Samson|
|Clifford Whitt||Cecil Keats|
|Isabelle Keats (first female to serve)|
In 2005, the council decided it would hold, for the first time, a separate election for Mayor. James Samson (incumbent) and Lorie Brown ran for the position with James Samson being the eventual successor.
Sources: Calvin Hibbs
"History of Peterview", unknown source
David Wegenast, Wayne Stockwood: "Decks Awash", History of Peterview