A Caribbean Community in the North Atlantic: DISCO, Labour Migration, and the Creation of Whitney Pier, Nova Scotia, c. 1900–1930


  • Claudine Bonner Acadia University


Over the course of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the Dominion Iron and Steel Company in Sydney, Nova Scotia (DISCO) hired thousands of migrant labourers. Many of the workers settled in the nearby Whitney Pier. Among them were hundreds of African American and Caribbean men attracted by the promise of good wages and living conditions. Other people, including women and children, followed afterward. A history of Whitney Pier’s Black community demonstrates not only how industry and urbanization changed in the area at the time but also how the community negotiated those changes and in so doing established a unique subculture around the areas where the Caribbean migrants lived and socialized.

Author Biography

Claudine Bonner, Acadia University

Claudine Bonner is Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology at Acadia University and a Visiting Researcher at the Gorsebrook Research Institute (GRI) for Atlantic Canada Studies at Saint Mary’s University.