The dominant racing boat at the Charlottetown Yacht Club from the mid-1940s until the late-1960s was the Snipe. The boat was both a local and international favourite as over 30,000 boats have been registered from the beginning of the class in 1931 until the present. At 15.5 feet the boat could be easily built from standard timber and later plywood.
The two-person boat provided lively sailing and a range of regatta opportunities as there were large fleets elsewhere in Atlantic Canada. Many Island sailors took their boats to regattas in Shediac. often towing the boats back and forth behind motorcruisers.
“Scout”, the Snipe in the photo above, was owned by Billie Bourke, daughter of Hal Bourke, one of the original Yacht Club members. In this photo she is shown at the helm with Eileen Porter as crew. The photo probably dates from before 1946 when changes were made to the Railway wharf. [Thanks to Jim Bennett for helping date the photo] Behind the Snipe most of the wharves of Charlottetown Harbour can be seen. At the time they were identified as Pickard’s Coal Wharf, Buntain and Bell Wharf, the Marine and Fisheries Wharf, the Ferry Wharf and the Railway Wharf. The opening span of the Hillsborough Railway Bridge can be seen beyond. Today, all but the Railway Wharf have disappeared, either eroded or dredged away or buried under the massive Department of Transport Wharf now housing the Charlottetown Convention Centre. The Railway Bridge has been replaced with a road bridge and the old bridge abutments have mostly tumbled into the channel.