A life History of Thomas A Card



    Capt. Thomas A Card of Summerville, Hants County, Nova Scotia was born Sept 13 1853.
At the age of eight he was left without a father or mother and was sent out to work on a farm in Lower Burlington
under the direction of J.B. Allen.
    After five years of farm life and working from 5 AM to 8 PM, he decided to try the sea.
In 1866 he shipped on the good ship "Contintal" out of Windsor NS, owned by Bennett Smith and commanded by Capt. Elais Bitts, serving faithfully for sever months.
    In the spring of 1967 he started out again on the brig Eunice", commanded by Capt. Coalfleet of Hantsport and served on her and other vessels as able seaman up to 1874. Then under her charge he brought the schooner" R Rose" from Sydney C.B. to Saint John NB with a cargo of coal.
    After that he came to Summerville and shipped on the brig "Alice Bradshaw" as second mate with Capt. B.E. Sanford, a man he loved, honored and faithfully obeyed. Capt. Sanford took an interest in his second mate and on their many voyages to Central and South America and to the Mediterranean, he taught young Card to  navigate so by 1878 he was Chief Mate in command to bring her to Cheverie, where she was ordered by her owners for repairs.
    Skipper Card made his first trip from New York in three days, but as he had no certificate he was not allowed to sail  her out of her home port, so he went to Boston and sailed for two years on American ships.
    He then shipped with Capt. Symore Malcolm as mate of the braquentine "Falmouth" belonging to Ezra Churchill and Sons of Hantsport and made a trip or two to Spain.
    In January 1884 at New York he took charge of the schooner "Helena Morris" came to Halifax with coal and made two trips to the West Indies.
He took charge of the brig "Alida Smith". Took his wife and sailed away from Horton Bluff at 4 PM, just two hours after he was married and four days later he arrived in New York, discharged his cargo of plaster and loaded general cargo for the West Indies.
He made three trips to the West Indies and arrived back home and ashore off Horton Bluff in July 1885.
    In 1886 he lost the "Alida Smith" on the Jersey Coast and came back home and shipped as mate on the barque "Lillian" commanded by Capt. R. Dexter and sailed with him to the River Pratt and clockwise until 1886 when he put him in charge of his topsail schooner "Christina Moore" which he sailed to South America until 1891. In July of that year the barque "Trinidad" was launched at the Armstrong Shipyard in Summerville, with Capt. Card in charge sailing her on her first voyage to Liverpool England .
    He sailed that vessel until 1904 only being out of her for one voyage. During that time he sailed many times around the world and was in the foreign trade continuously until he left her in March 1905.
    Capt. Card then took charge of the ship "J.D. Everett" and sailed her until 1911, leaving her at Gulf Port Mississippi Sound , when he came home to rest.

Text  by George Fuller 

Take a tour of the 19'th century homes in Summerville Return to The Old Houses of Summerville NS
This page is a brief history of Summerville and includes many old pictures Return to Summerville History


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