January 27, 2022 marks the 80th anniversary of the Crow’s Nest Officers’ Club, established so allied naval & merchant officers could relax, share stories of victory & loss, and have a meal. The club is currently closed due to the pandemic, but you can “visit” here.
In 1987 the Crow’s Nest Officer’s Club established the Crow’s Nest Military Artifacts Association Inc., for the purposes of preserving and maintaining custody of its historic and military assets and memorabilia.
Since its inception the Artifacts Association has framed, maintained, and photographed the artifacts, as well as performed other functions, using government grants and volunteer labour. A 27-page booklet was prepared which included newspaper clippings and other material concerning the surrender of the German submarine U-190 and the subsequent installation of the periscope in the Club. The “Hesperus” ship’s badge was presented by the British Government to the CNMAA in recognition of the role played by the Club in serving the Royal Navy in WWII. The CNMAA hosted a reception in which the Hon Peter Morrison, UK Minister of State for Energy made the presentation (see the photo on wall, top of stairs.)
The highlight of the Artifacts collection is the gun shield art, our original, unique WWII items.The wall displays of photos and badges have been better arranged and firmly attached in many areas. The periscope has been restored and replaced and requires periodic maintenance. A computer record has been kept of each new addition to the collection. The CNMAA early on succeeded in becoming a charitable organization and cash donations are recognized by receipts for a tax credit..
In 2006, the CNMAA, in conjunction with Heritage Canada, began posting pictures and descriptions of our artifacts on line. The collection can be viewed on the Canadian Heritage Website by clicking here. The work continues and over time the website will expand to display all of our artifacts as well as a virtual communities memories program, highlighting the Battle of the Atlantic, the significance of the Port of St. John’s, and the origins of the Crow’s Nest Officers’ Club.
Crow’s Nest Military Artifacts Association is located in the Crow’s Nest Officer’s Club at 88 Water Street, St. John’s.