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The town of Whitbourne, with a population of 890, is located just off the Trans-Canada Highway on Route 81. Whitbourne has always been considered the “hub of the Avalon” with connections to three possible routes for visitors of the Avalon Peninsula.


Whitbourne, unlike most Newfoundland communities that came before it, is an inland town. It was founded around 1880 during the construction of the Newfoundland Railway. Sir Robert Bond, the Prime Minister from 1900 to 1909 played a role in the expansion and planning of the Town and developed an elaborate country home there called the “Grange”. The house is no longer in existence, but part of the estate is now Sir Robert Bond Park, which is noted for an unusual abundance of northern lichens including the relatively rare Degelia plumbea or blue felt lichen Degelia.

Whitbourne has many of the amenities of a small town that has traditionally been a regional service centre. The town's Wetlands Conservation Trail is of interest to many visitors.

The Whitbourne Museum is a popular must see for visitors to the area as it displays the town's rich colorful history.



Up until the late 1870’s the interior of Newfoundland had yet to be developed. The island consisted of a network of outports connected to each other by sea.


By the early part of the 1880’s construction began on the Newfoundland Railway with plans to construct a railway line from St. John’s to Halls Bay. By 1885 the company awarded the contract went bankrupt after reaching the middle of the Avalon Peninsula where a branch line ran to Harbour Grace. When Robert Reid obtained the contract to finish the project he moved his headquarters to Harbour Grace Junction. This decision had a major impact on the area which developed rapidly with an influx of people looking for work.


By May, 1889 politician Robert Bond, who owned a parcel of land in the area, proposed a bill that was passed by the legislature to change the name from Harbour Grace Junction to Whitbourne. This was in honor of Sir Richard Whitbourne who was an early English promoter of Newfoundland. By passing this initiative, Whitbourne became Newfoundland’s first inland town.     

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Whitbourne was the first inland town to develop because of the Railway. It was originally named Harbour Grace Junction. 

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Sir Robert Bond, Prime Minister of Newfoundland from 1900-1909, and regarded as one of it’s greatest politicians built...

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The Commission of Government created the NFLD Ranger Force in the winter of 1935 to provide government services in...

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Whitbourne has a rich history of answering the call during war time. Our brave young men and women have served gallantly...

History 2
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