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George Navaux

French Immigrant and Quarantine Officer at Pier 21
S.S. Washington
June 6, 1951

I landed in Pier 21 in Halifax in the 66-51. We had to anchor next to George Island for several hours as there was 3 other passenger ships docked alongside Pier 21.

I was alone coming to Canada, my wife and kids were still in France, I didn’t want all of us to come without first finding out what was all about in this country. I worked in different places, found out it would do fine and the rest of the family came in 1952 and we settled in Montreal - I wanted to join the army medical corp. but I had to wait 3 years in order to join - the law!! I finally joined the CANC in January 1954 and stayed to 1964. When I transferred to the civil service, health department and was posted in Halifax on the quarantine officer for the port and the airport. My office was at Pier 21 where we stayed for 14 years and I had the chance and privilege to help immigrants like I was helped when I came in and to deal with thousand of ships and planes of all shapes and countries. It was no (?) at time but it was very interesting years. My family never regretted to have come to this country from which we are citizens.

We visited Pier 21 renovated last year, and I spent a few minutes of my window which was about the only that was not renovated, for the better certainly.

Second Letter

After leaving Pier 21 (FAC medical services) moved to the 3rd floor of the downtown post office in Halifax for a few years. For two years in a row, the P.O. had trouble during the Xmas season with port time ex workers.

The P.O. finally found the sources of the trouble. They had hired several illiterate workers for the xmas season. After receiving back the enclosed correspondence (and received it back over 3 weeks after having sent it) this event reminded me of those P.O. glorious days years ago! The more it changes, the more it stays the same.

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Story of Georges Navaux

I landed in Pier 21 in Halifax on the 6th of June 1951. We had to anchor next to George’s Island for several hours as there were 3 other passenger ships docked alongside Pier 21.

I was alone coming to Canada, my wife and kids were still in France. I did not want all of us to come without first finding out what this country was all about. I worked in different places, found out it would do fine and the rest of the family came in 1952. We settled in Montreal. I wanted to join the Army Medical Corps, but I had to wait 3 years in order to join the law!

I finally joined the CAMC in January 1954 and stayed to 64,when I transferred to the Civil Service Health Department and was posted in Halifax as the quarantine officer for the port and the airport. My office was at Pier 21where we stayed for 14 years and I had the chance and privilege to help Immigrants, like I was helped when I came in and to deal with thousands of ships and planes of all shapes and countries. It was no (word unknown) at time but it was very interesting years. My family never regretted having come to this country from which we are citizens for a long time now and proud of it.

After leaving Pier21, we (the Medical Services) moved to the 8th floor of the downtown post office in Halifax for a few years. For two years in a row, the PO had trouble during Christmas season with part time extra workers. The PO finally found the sources of this trouble. They had hired several illiterate workers for the Christmas season. After receiving back the enclosed correspondence (and received it back after 3 weeks after having sent it) this event reminded me of those PO glorious days years ago!

The more it changes, the more it is the same!!

We visited Pier 21, renovated last year, and I spent as few minutes at my "window" which was about the only thing that was not renovated, for the better certainly.

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Stories in our Collection are available in the language in which they were submitted.