Designated in 2015 as a Distinctive Cultural Tradition and Practice.
Nominator: Dale Jarvis, Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador
Traditional games are an essential part of Newfoundland and Labrador culture. Games and play are important formative aspects of childhood socialization. Games such as “Skin the Pudding”, “Witch in the Well,” “Tiddly” and “Copying Ice Pans” speak to the unique facets of life in the province. Aboriginal communities in the province have their own unique games that include “Ring & Pin,” “The Bridle,” and “Waltes.” These games were played by children in communities and regions throughout the province, perhaps under different names or with slightly different rules, but all contributing to a common culture.
Children playing “pitch and toss” in Grey River, 1913. From The Rooms Archives.
Children playing ring games in St. Anthony, circa 1913. From The Rooms Archives.
Three girls on see-saw, circa 1915. From The Rooms Archives.
Two boys playing on komatiks in Cartwright, circa 1930s. From The Rooms Archives.
Two girls playing chuckie stones in Cartwright, 1939. From The Rooms Archives.
Children playing a ring game in Cape Broyle, circa 1940s. Photo courtesy of Dorothy O’Brien.
Deaconess with children playing a game. United Church’s summer school for children in Exploits, summer 1943. From The Rooms Archives.
Children playing on komatik in Harrington Harbour, circa 1948.
Children playing babby house in Cape Broyle, circa late 1960s. Photo courtesy of Dorothy O’Brien.