Port au Choix removing old vessel

Photo: Town of Port au Choix

A tourist attraction or an eyesore? Well, it depends who you ask...

The Elmer Jones has been in Port au Choix on the Great Northern Peninsula since the 1960s. But the vessel itself is much older.

Town Manager Lizeta Gould says that the town has been trying to remove the deteriorating ship for years.

The Town Council recently received some funding from the Abandoned Boat Program to dismantle and remove the old Elmer Jones from the harbour.

Built in New London, Connecticut in 1926, the boat was originally sailing on the St. Lawrence River. During WWII it was used by the US Navy. The ship was rebuilt in 1953 and then used as a ferry running the Bell Island-Portugal Cove run.

When it arrived in Port au Choix it was a floating fish plant and was eventually towed to the other side of the harbour and left there.

From there it was donated to the Recreation Committee to use the steel for the new stadium but the town instead received funding for new materials. The ship was left there and pieces have been breaking off and interfering with fishing equipment.