Seasell, Boston, 1987
I worked at the Fortress of Louisbourg NHS for 23 years, and occasionally took part in some unusual events or activities.
In 1987, a bunch of us—employees and volunteers—participated in Seasell, a Nova Scotia tourism marketing venture that sailed to Boston aboard the Scotia Prince. The trip had many memorable moments from start to end, from the mystery meat to nearly freezing in our bunks to top-notch musical entertainment.
Once the gang got to Boston it was time to don our various Fortress costumes and talk to media and potential visitors to NS. The thinking was apparently that if Bostonians saw people dressed as we were—as 18th-century inhabitants of Louisbourg—they would want to vacation in NS and come see the Fortress. I have no idea how well that approach worked. In retrospect, it seems like a lot of wishful thinking.
One photo taken by a Boston Globe photographer ended up prominently displayed in the paper. That was the photo of Mary Topshee (aka mon épouse) and Edward Storm.
On one outing away from the ship a bunch of us in Fortress costumes took taxis to Louisburg Square where we were again well photographed. In one of those shots, seen below, Mary and I are coming down some steps—of the onetime home of Louisa May Alcott, author of Little Women—while Valerie Hunt, Don Tryon and Theresa Boone look on.
These photos turned up in a photo album as Mary and I continue to sort through stuff that needs to be sorted before we sell our house in Halifax (which is having an unprecedented real estate boom) and move into an apartment.
The Boston trip reminds me of a couple of others I went on while working with Parks Canada. In those instances I dressed up as Samuel de Champlain. I know! One time was in Manhattan, another in Miami Beach.
I wonder if Tourism people still think wearing period costumes attracts tourists?