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John Tait
John Tait

John Tait - master shipbulder

David Tait, John's father, was born in Argyll, Scotland in 1797 and married Beatrice Lauder, also from Scotland and born the same year. The year of their arrival in Canada (Amherst Island) is not recorded. They both died in Picton, Ontario, he on 15 January 1883, she on 22 September 1885. He began with a shipyard on his farm at the foot of Amherst Island. This was "the Island of Tante In the Bay of Quinte" as old shipping registers sometimes describe it, commemorating La Salle’s lieutenant Tonti, to whom the island was probably granted in the French regime. It is long enough and large enough to provide many fine farms, and has two tiny towns on it, Emerald and Stella. These were grain shipping ports in the old days. The Tait shipyard at the foot of the island was some distance east of Stella.

John "Jack" Tait – master shipbuilder

John Tait, who over a lengthy career gained the reputation of master shipbuilder, was born to David and Beatrice on Amherst Island, Ontario, 14 February 1839, lived in Picton, Ontario for most of his life, was involved in designing and building about one hundred vessels – schooners, barges, steamers, yachts – and died 10 October 1920. He is buried in the Glenwood Cemetary in Picton. His reputation was unparalleled. Ref: family records in our Great Lakes fonds.

Amongst many articles in the SChooner Days series, C.H.J. Snider wrote a series of four weekly pieces (7 to 28 November 1936) detailing mnay of Jack Tait's achievements:

For other details concerning John Tait in the Schooner Days articles, please see the Schooner Days Subject Index by Mr Rowley Murphey (as amended and updated).



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