by Kathy Johnson, South Shore Breaker

Margarette Whitman poses with the birchbark canoe at the First Fishers exhibit opening at the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic in Lunenburg. Photo by Viki Gaul

A 15.5 foot (4.7m) birch bark canoe that was constructed by the Mi’kmaw in the early 1900s for hunting and fishing in the backwoods of Nova Scotia is the centerpiece for a new exhibit at the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic in Lunenburg.

First Fishers opened in October and is a permanent display at the Museum on the Lunenburg waterfront that chronicles 13,000 years of history, said Nova Scotia Museum Curator of Technology, Roger Lewis.

“To get a canoe in that kind of condition is a rarity,” said Lewis.  “We didn’t have to do any conservation to it. We had to repair two or three pieces of bark in the bow and the stern. The patina is original. It’s in beautiful shape. We are very fortunate to have it in the exhibit

For decades, the canoe sat untouched in the basement of the Whitman home in Lawrencetown. Constructed from oak, spruce r ...

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