Sunnyside

Discover Sunnyside, Newfoundland Labrador: A Town Steeped in History and Natural Beauty

The Early History of Sunnyside, Newfoundland Labrador

Sunnyside, a town on the Avalon Peninsula in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, stretches for about five miles along the shore of Trinity Bay, also known as Bull Arm. The town is believed to have been once inhabited by the Beothuk, the native people of Newfoundland, discovered by the explorer John Guy.

Over the centuries, the area was settled by the ancestors of many of the families living there today. These families played a crucial role in developing Sunnyside's economy by initiating the fishery, logging, and mining industries in the community. The creation of these industries led to a population increase, shaping Sunnyside as it is known today.

Before Sunnyside was settled, explorer John Guy found a group of natives in the area in 1612. He named the area Truce Sound in honour of the good relations established with the Beothuk. The area was first known as Bottom of Bay Bulls Arm, with related settlements like Centre Cove nearby. The name was later changed to Bull Arm, likely to avoid confusion with another town known as Bay Bulls. The current name, Sunnyside, was inspired by a former school teacher who noted the constant sunshine on that tiny section of Trinity Bay.

Sunnyside, Newfoundland Labrador: A Historical Hub of Communication

On August 5, 1858, the USS Niagara landed the first successful Transatlantic Telegraph Cable in Sunnyside, then known as "Bay Bulls Arm". During the cable's operation period, between August 9 and October 20, 1858, 732 messages were sent through the cable station in Sunnyside. One of the first official messages sent was a congratulatory note from Queen Victoria to US President James Buchanan on the success of the First Transatlantic Cable.

Sunnyside, Newfoundland Labrador from the 19th Century to Present

By the mid-19th century, Sunnyside was a community of fishermen and loggers. Working in the saw-mill was an important job, but a fire in the community destroyed most of the standing timber. The pulpwood drive also provided significant employment, with Morgan Snook as the foreman of the Main River and Badger drive.

In 1921, the population had reached 337, and the town name had officially been changed to Sunnyside. By the 1930s, the population had peaked at 399 citizens, declining to 228 people by the 1950s. However, the population grew steadily over the years, reaching a high of 726, before decreasing to 634 by 1986.

Over the years, many Sunnyside citizens found employment in road construction and other large construction projects. The oil refinery in Come By Chance and the Hibernia Oil Platform project provided jobs for many residents.

The Demographics of Sunnyside, Newfoundland Labrador

In the 2021 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, Sunnyside had a population of 407 living in 189 of its 271 total private dwellings, a change of 2.8% from its 2016 population of 396. With a land area of 39.02 km2 (15.07 sq mi), it had a population density of 10.4/km2 (27.0/sq mi) in 2021.

Sources