Wednesday, December 4, 2019

A Long Forgotten Weather Station

More from LeBreton Gallery today.

This is the staff car of Field Marshal Harold Alexander, whose command was in North Africa and Italy. After the war he ended up serving as Canada's governor general.

Two larger vehicles are here.

A model of a ship, the Nipigon, is on display too. For comparison, the actual ship was about as long as the Museum is wide.

Here we have another of my favourite artifacts in the Museum, the weather station codenamed Kurt. During the Second World War the German navy installed this at the north end of Labrador, painting the bins to look like a Canadian station. It transmitted data for a short time, then ceased, and faded from memory for forty years until a German researcher came across information on it in war records. The fact that it was out there for so many years and went unnoticed is marvelous.


  1. Love to see those old vehicles kept in such good condition. And you've got to love "Kurt" hiding away for so long, rather like those Japanese soldiers who came out of the jungle years after the conflict had ended!

  2. Wow, forty years - that sure is amazing. Especially with that name!

  3. Impressive vehicles, and driver, Wells. Interesting photos. Riding a helicopter, and landing on a ship in rough waters is surreal. Bravo!

  4. I read about that weather station somewhere and find it amazing it was never found for so long

  5. That car looks big enough to be a barge.

  6. Those vehicles are in such good shape! And look tame, even though they could be deadly. Janis GDP

  7. interesting vehicles!! a ship as well. ( ;

  8. I like the name of the ship, the Nipigon! :)

  9. Hello, cool exhibit. I like the car and ship! Wishing you a happy day!

  10. ...the weather station sure is an interesting bit of history.

  11. @John: Kurt makes quite a story.

    @Iris: to be fair, that part of Labrador is quite remote, and few people over the years would have seen it, and would have chalked it up to what it appeared to be, as opposed to reporting it to the authorities.

    @Agnes: it's quite a car.

    @Francisco: thank you.

    @Maywyn: and yet they're pros at it.

    @Bill: I have mentioned it before.

    @David: they built them big back then.

    @Janis: that's quite true.

    @Beth: thank you.

    @Ella: it's named for a lake in northern Ontario. I have seen that lake once or twice.

    @Eileen: thank you.

    @Tom: it really is!

  12. The Field Marshall’s car is quite something!

  13. I didn't know anything about the weather station.
    Have a great day.

  14. That's a gorgeous car. And it is very interesting that the weather station was "missing" for so long. :-)

  15. My dad would have loved this museum! Such great vehicles.

  16. History well done in photos ~ ^_^

    Happy Moments to You,
    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  17. Amazing that the weather station could just sit there for so long!

  18. There is a little camel placard on the front of the yellow car. What is that?

  19. I'm loving the field marshal's car!

  20. Lots of interesting info here William, hard to imagine the weather station was undetected for so long.. makes you wonder what else could be out there 😊

  21. Like WoW - Way Cool - Solid Machinery There


  22. @Marie: it is!

    @Catarina: thanks!

    @DJan: I wonder if the car's still in running order.

    @Kathie: it is quite a museum.

    @Carol: it certainly is.

    @RedPat: that's true.

    @Sandi: I believe it goes back to his time in command in the North African theatre.

    @Sharon: I figured it would be quite popular.

    @Grace: you do wonder.

    @Padre: thank you!

  23. I love WWII museums, especially those with full-sized vehicles on display!

  24. Fascinating. How can a weather station such as that just be "forgotten"? Museums and archives are so important to retain our history.

  25. I would like to make a ride in that staff car of the Field Marshal, it's a beauty.

  26. Love the Field Marshall's car, it's pretty impressive.

  27. How odd and kind of neat about Kurt.

  28. The weather station is so interesting and who knew or had forgotten about it.
    Love the cars and trucks.

  29. I guess that staff car did yeoman duty! Three engine changes!

  30. @Sharon: and this one has a lot.

    @Angie: because it's so remote, it would be easily overlooked. Had they planted it on Signal Hill in St. John's, that wouldn't have been the case.

    @Catalyst: it is indeed.

    @Jan: it really is.

    @Bill: that it is.

    @Anvilcloud: I like it.

    @Parsnip: thank you!

    @Jeanie: very much so.

    @Happyone: definitely.

    @Joanne: indeed.

  31. Kurt?! That's pretty, uhm, well, ballsy!

    1. Yes, and little surprise it went unnoticed for decades.

  32. Nice to see the two larger vehicles …

    All the best Jan