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Museum salutes navy’s first ship

Guns blazing and flags waving, the HMCS Niobe sailed into Halifax Harbour 100 years ago Thursday.

Guns blazing and flags waving, the HMCS Niobe sailed into Halifax Harbour 100 years ago Thursday.

A celebration was held at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, complete with a cake with a picture of the Niobe on it.

Dan Conlin can easily imagine Halifax as the first ship of the Canadian navy sailed in.

“I conjure the hopes, aspirations and challenges of that moment back in 1910,” said Conlin, curator of marine history at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic.

The Niobe wasn’t just a naval ship but an immigrant one, too, since it carried British sailors who were about to become Canadians, he said.

She was greeted at the mouth of the harbour by the HMCS Canada, a fishing patrol boat. Canada’s first admiral boarded the Niobe and they sailed triumphantly into Halifax Harbour.

Also on Thursday, a new painting of the HMCS Sackville was unveiled and a new exhibit was opened at the museum. The Naval Gallery leads visitors through the history of events that led to the birth of the Canadian navy in 1910.

 
 
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