A wee bit of history

From 1917 to 1971 the Royal Bank of Canada provided continuous banking services in Clark’s Harbour. Then it became imperative to find a new location. Basil Blades, a highly respected entrepreneur and community leader recognized the importance of keeping the bank in the region. He built a new building and leased it to the bank.

When the Royal Bank closed and went up for sale early in 2021, the owners of Clark’s Harbour Seafood Ltd. and Atlantic ChiCan Seafood stepped in with a plan to open a restaurant. Their vision was to attract people to the region. Because the former bank was located by the sea, they called it the Salt Banker.  

The “Salt Banker” was also a schooner that fished with trawl dories off the Grand Banks of Newfoundland. Men brought the daily catch from the trawl dories back to the schooner where it was dressed, split, then salted in the holds of the ship before being transported to land. Next, the fish was kenched (kept straight) on pallets, pressed to remove the excess water from the fish, then sundried on fish flakes in preparation to be sold domestically in Newfoundland, or exported to countries like the West Indies.

Today, sitting inside (or outside on the patio in fine weather) you’ll see fishing boats and activities—evidence that you are in the middle of a great fishing community whose lifeblood is the sea.