Sealed Landers' Gristmill

Many people know about Sealed Landers' Park, locally known as "the Duck Pond," but not who the park is named for – Sealed Landers, one of Yarmouth's first settlers.

Throughout history, everywhere around the world, courageous individuals braved new lands in search of a better life for themselves and their families. For Yarmouth, those people were the families of Sealed Landers, Ebenezer Ellis, and Moses Perry. These men and their families arrived from New England on June 9th, 1761, on the ship, the Pompey Dick. Landers had accepted an offer from Nova Scotia officials to settle the colony, and with that, became the first English-speaking settler of Yarmouth. Soon after accepting this offer, Landers, his second wife, Thankful, and their four children packed up what they could and started on their journey to their new home.

Sealed Landers decided to settle his family in what would later be known as Milton, Yarmouth County – a variation of "Milltown." He chose this area because of the constant water stream, as Landers was a miller by trade and needed water power for his work. Before settling in Milton, Landers traveled the Chebogue River with his son searching for the perfect location to settle. They debated on areas at Cape Forchu and Chebogue Point but ultimately decided to settle in Milton.

Despite the hardships of settling in a new area, the harsh winter, and fear of what lay ahead, Landers and the other families built lives for themselves. It was difficult, especially during the first winter, as the ship that was supposed to arrive with supplies never did, making an already difficult situation even worse. Once settled, Landers began building a gristmill, the first in Yarmouth County, which used a milling apparatus he had brought from Massachusetts. In addition, he built the settlement's first framed house (c. 1767) on the east side of the Yarmouth harbour. 

Likely Landers would never have guessed that his legacy would continue for centuries. He was a pioneer, a strong and brave man who worked hard to build a better life for not only his family but also for other settlers who came to Yarmouth County. Today, tourists and locals can visit Sealed Landers’ Park and remember what determination and courage can bring.