contributed by Archie Munroe (nephew)

Harley "Beattie" Munroe was born 1915 in Whitehead, a son of Thurlo Munroe and Mary Lavinia Uloth. These are some of the stories he recorded over the years.

Wreck of the Libourne
Wreck of the Libourne

In the spring of 1925 people were running from house to house with the news a ship had run ashore on gull ledge. The old fellows with a smile on their faces wondering if she would have rum on her, as previous wrecks had.
Pretty soon all the small boats of the village were out there to discover she was a French ship of 25000 tons loaded with coal. The crew stayed on her for about four days and a storm came, and the ship was taking on water so the ship was abandoned. White Head moved on board. What they found was very little of any use to fisherman. In those times ships had no refrigerating facility so carried their meat on the hoof.
There were three big pigs and a cow and numerous chickens running around the deck and below deck rats by the score. Over the next two years W.H. was infested with them. On the wreck men were climbing masts removing rope tacks and nobody was too excited until Joe hollered, "Boys I found it." Joe had got into a storeroom and found sacks and sacks of mixed nuts and barrels and barrels of wine.
Glory to God what a situation to be in. All that wine in barrels that could not be put in the boats as it was too rough a sea to bring a boat alongside and no other container then your stomach to carry it away in.
There was just a rope ladder down the side of the ship and the boats would come along side and drop all but one person off on the ship, and the others
would lay off from the ship where there was no danger of getting the boat smashed.
Some of the men emptied their gasoline cans over the side to fill with wine, others went in stocking their hip rubbers full and the other unfortunates had nothing but their stomachs such as poor Pa.
When Pa landed home that day Mom and us kids were very anxious to hear about the wreck.
All Pa said was, "Oh well she's just like any other wreck, she's on the rocks." All Pa got out of the wreck was a pair of wooden sole clogs; those have just a wood sole with a leather strap over your toes, a white hat like they wear in the jungle, and part of a mirror in a frame. Of course he did quite well on the wine considering he had no container. Pa sure looked funny but nobody laughed.

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