Throwback Thursday - MV William Carson

by Stefan Carew

Marine Atlantic, its predecessor CN Marine, and pre-confederation Newfoundland coastal boats have a strong and proud history serving the people of Atlantic Canada through ferry terminals, passenger vessels and rail service.

In this week’s “Throwback Thursday” blog posting we highlight the MV William Carson, which served the Port aux Basques-North Sydney crossing, and later the Labrador coastal service from 1955-1977. It was the first ferry built to carry both passengers and cars to and from Newfoundland.

Named after the prominent 19th century Newfoundland politician the vessel measured 351 feet in length; when introduced it was the biggest ferry of its time. The MV William Carson could accommodate an estimated 262 passengers, six tandem trucks and 600 tonnes of cargo.

Further to the information we originally posted we have been receiving great personal memories.

Here are some fun tidbits from former Marine Atlantic employee, Clive:

“Interior seating lounge:  This was on “C” Deck after the cabins there were removed to accommodate more passengers. I think her capacity was increased to about 500 from 295.

Two berth cabin MV William Carson: This was one of 12 Deluxe Cabins located on “B” Deck. Two berth cabins were upper & lower berths on “C” and “F” Decks fwd & aft.

Seating area MV William Carson: This was originally the forward observation lounge, later converted to the Bar Lounge. Not a nice place to be in rough weather!