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Bluenose

From Academic Kids

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The 2005 Nova Scotia license plate features the schooner Bluenose.

The Bluenose is a legendary Canadian schooner from Nova Scotia, a celebrated racing ship and a symbol of the province. The Bluenose has such a proud Nova Scotian history that the word "bluenoser" is slang for Nova Scotian.

Bluenose was launched at Lunenburg, Nova Scotia on March 26, 1921, as both a working cod-fishing schooner and a racing ship. This was in response to a Nova Scotian ship's defeat in a race for working schooners established by the Halifax Herald newspaper in 1920.

After a season fishing on the Grand Banks, Bluenose defeated the ship Elsie from Gloucester, Massachusetts, returning the trophy to Nova Scotia. During the next 17 years of racing, no challenger, American or Canadian, could wrest the trophy from her.

Fishing schooners became obsolete after World War II, and despite efforts to keep her in Nova Scotia, the undefeated Bluenose was sold to work as a freighter in the West Indies. She foundered on a Haitian reef on January 28, 1946.

Bluenose and her captain, Angus Walters, were inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in 1955.

Her daughter, Bluenose II, was launched at Lunenburg on July 24, 1963, built according to original plans by many of the same workers. She was sold to the government of Nova Scotia for $1 and serves as a goodwill ambassador, tourist attraction in Lunenburg, and symbol of the province. During the summer she visits ports all around Nova Scotia and the world. Bluenose II does not race.

Bluenose II, like her mother, has the largest working mainsail in the world, measuring 386 m2; she has a total sail area of 1036 m2.

Bluenose has adorned the Canadian dime since 1937, has been portrayed on a postage stamp, and appears on the 2005 Nova Scotia license plate.

In the Media

Canadian folk singer Stan Rogers honours both ships in his song Bluenose, found on his 1978 album, Turnaround.

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