Town of Trinity
"Three arms or rivers, large enough for several hundred sails of ships ... the best and largest Harbour in all the Land." from " A Discourse and Discovery of New-Found-Land", an historical introduction to Trinity by Sir Richard Whitbourne, 1620.
There is no documentation showing the origin of the name, it may be from a reference by Sir Richard Whitbourne to the three arms within the harbour or may have been named by the Portuguese explorer and navigator Gasper Corte Real, who sailed into the harbour on Trinity Sunday, 1501.
The first settlers are believed to be ten families from the English Brig Hawk who settled here in 1583. In the 1700's Trinity became an important fishing and mercantile centre. Many prominent merchants from the south of England, especially Poole, established businesses that continued to operate well into the 1800's. The English considered it so valuable, that in the mid 1700's they went to the expense of building a fort here to protect the harbour from the French. Some of the cannons are still there. This was a prosperous and progressive town.
Trinity can also lay claim to a number of important first events. Sir Richard Whitbourne held the first Court of Admiralty in the New World in Trinity in 1615 and it was here that Rev. John Clinch, surgeon and missionary, administered the first smallpox vaccine in North America in 1800.
A highlight of the summer's activities are the historic theatrical presentations by Rising Tide Theatre. This professional group presents "The Trinity Pageant", outdoors, two afternoons a week. Join the troupe as they re-enact historical events of this centuries old town. There are also evening performances, some outdoors and others in the main theatre building which is near the Dock Marina Restaurant & Gallery.
to visit the historic sites and experience
Trinity's history come to life as you visit