Accommodations Nova Scotia

Your Guide To Accommodations In Nova Scotia

North Sydney, Nova Scotia

North Sydney is a community in Nova Scotia's Cape Breton Regional Municipality. Located on the north side of Sydney Harbour, along the eastern coast of Cape Breton Island, North Sydney is an important port in Atlantic Canada as it is the western terminus of the Marine Atlantic ferry service. It acts as the marine link for the Trans-Canada Highway to the island of Newfoundland and Labrador, which is why North Sydney's nickname is called The Gateway To Newfoundland.

Marine Atlantic ferries currently operate from North Sydney's terminal to the ports of Port aux Basques and Argentia. The company is one of the largest employers in the area.

North Sydney emerged as a major shipbuilding centre in the early 1800s building many brigs and brigantines for the English market and later moving on to larger Barques and, in 1851, the full rigged ship Lord Clarendon, the largest wooden ship ever built in Cape Breton. Wooden shipbuilding declined in the 1860s but the same decade saw the arrival of increasing numbers of steamships drawn to North Sydney for bunker coal. By 1870 it was the fourth largest port in Canada dealing in ocean-going vessels, drawn for coal and due to the fact that The Western Union cable office had been established here in 1875. The railroad came to Cape Breton Island in 1891. At this time there were 2,513 people in North Sydney, compared to 2,417 in Sydney.

In 1898 North Sydney was chosen by the Reid-Newfoundland Company as the Canadian mainland terminal for a ferry service to Newfoundland; in June of that year the SS Bruce sailed from Port Aux Basques, it was the first ship to make that run.

During the first and second World wars, North Sydney played an important role in the relay of information from Europe to both Ottawa and Washington. North Sydney was home to a Western Union Cable office. It was here where coded messages were sent from overseas then relayed on to the rest of North America.

On the morning of November 10, 1918, the office received a top-secret coded message from Europe. It stated that effective at 11 am the next day (November 11, 1918) all fighting would cease on land, sea and in the air.

Therefore the people of North Sydney, in particular Mrs. Annie Butler Smith, were the first to know about the end of the Great War. It is reported that on the night on November 10, 1918, over 200 servicemen celebrated by marching through the streets of the town to celebrate the end of the war, one day before the rest of the world knew.

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