The Africville protest site grew yesterday as the son of the demolished north-end community’s last resident added his camper to the area just outside of Seaview Park.
Nelson Carvery’s father, Aaron “Pa” Carvery, is remembered as the last Africville resident to leave the community before it was bulldozed by the city in the 1960s. He joins Eddie Carvery, who has been protesting at the site since 1970, and Eddie’s brother Victor Carvery. Eddie is permanently based at the site, while Victor and now Nelson regularly join him in protest.
“My father had a lot of land – horses, cattle and pigs,” Nelson said as he oversaw renovations in his north-end home on Creighton Street yesterday. He said his father, who died in the 1970s, was paid $14,000 for his home to make way for the MacKay Bridge, and the land not used for that project should have been returned to him. It wasn’t, nor was the land belonging to his grandfather, William Carvery, and he wants a public inquiry to figure out exactly what happened.
“We’ll be there till we get an inquiry. I don’t think anything was done above board. There was a lot of backroom dealing,” said Nelson, who grew up in Africville. “If we do nothing now, nothing will get done, period.”
Eddie, who has been thrown off his protest site by the city numerous times in his 39-year campaign, said he was glad for the company and hoped it would signal a new, more political aspect to the protest. Eddie and Victor said they have hopes to soon meet with Premier Darrell Dexter to discuss their case.
“We need corporate support. We need people to say, ‘We’re going to right this wrong,’” Eddie said.
Dozens of dog-walkers drove past the expanded protest site yesterday afternoon, many of whom waved to the Carverys and honked from their vehicles.