Besides the Acadian home, it is essential to speak of the lands. Why? The environment of the new Acadia of the Maritimes was significantly different from the original surroundings and did not offer the same opportunities for survival. This, of course, had repercussions on their daily life and greatly modified their lifestyle as early as the late 18th century. In fact, it may be said that a transition was then made from Acadia of the land to an Acadia of the sea.

With this transition came a change in profession for many Acadians, from farmers, as they were before 1755, to fishermen. The soil on their new coastal lands was not found to be very fertile. They therefore had to engage in a variety of tasks tapping the resources of the sea, the soil and the forest. Of course, agriculture remained important. However, the use of certain ancestral methods, such as the dyke and sluice system, was henceforth practically impossible.

This new Acadian landscape was also a country characterized by isolation. At this time, however, native peoples lived in more remote places, while English-speaking settlements were more prevalent. The primitive state of transportation and comm Read More
Besides the Acadian home, it is essential to speak of the lands. Why? The environment of the new Acadia of the Maritimes was significantly different from the original surroundings and did not offer the same opportunities for survival. This, of course, had repercussions on their daily life and greatly modified their lifestyle as early as the late 18th century. In fact, it may be said that a transition was then made from Acadia of the land to an Acadia of the sea.

With this transition came a change in profession for many Acadians, from farmers, as they were before 1755, to fishermen. The soil on their new coastal lands was not found to be very fertile. They therefore had to engage in a variety of tasks tapping the resources of the sea, the soil and the forest. Of course, agriculture remained important. However, the use of certain ancestral methods, such as the dyke and sluice system, was henceforth practically impossible.

This new Acadian landscape was also a country characterized by isolation. At this time, however, native peoples lived in more remote places, while English-speaking settlements were more prevalent. The primitive state of transportation and communication systems still made any interaction with the outside world difficult. It was only towards the end of the 19th century that the establishment of newspapers and the coming of the railway, among other innovations, allowed an opening to the world.

What you will therefore see in this section is that the manner in which the Acadians actually occupied this new country: the settling of new villages, the exploitation of resources, and the relationship between Acadians and other communities.

© Village Historique Acadien, Province of New Brunswick, 2003. All Rights Reserved.

In the 1800s, the church or chapel steeple becomes the dominant feature of most Acadian villages.

Village Historique Acadien
c. 1990
© Village Historique Acadien, Province of New Brunswick, 2003. All Rights Reserved.


In their new Acadia, most Acadian family settled by the sea or along a stream.

Village Historique Acadien

© Village Historique Acadien, Province of New Brunswick, 2003. All Rights Reserved.


During the late 1700s, some Acadian families, still under the shock of the Deportation, chose to settle in the depths of the Madawaska forest.

Village Historique Acadien
2002
© Village Historique Acadien, Province of New Brunswick, 2003. All Rights Reserved.


Until the middle of the 18th century, Acadia was essentially positioned in Nova Scotia and the southernmost part of New Brunswick. Although on the eve of Deportation a few small centers could be found throughout the Maritime area, the majority of the Acadian population lived around Grand-Pré, Annapolis Royal, Pigiguit and Beaubassin. But the Deportation upset everything in this landscape.

Following exile, a number of Acadians came back to the Maritime provinces. Their ancestral lands, now occupied by British colonists, were lost to them forever. Of course, they had no alternative but to look elsewhere, but where? Reluctant for many years to grant lands to Acadians, the British authorities lay down strict restrictions, including the rule that Acadians must settle in small isolated groups. Motivated by a certain will to settle apart from the English, the majority of Acadian families thus had no choice but to choose coastal areas. On top of this will was the intense pressure from British colonists who monopolized the best sites and were more and more numerous from the 1780s onward.

Some sites already settled before 1755, such as Memramcook and Petitcodiac Read More
Until the middle of the 18th century, Acadia was essentially positioned in Nova Scotia and the southernmost part of New Brunswick. Although on the eve of Deportation a few small centers could be found throughout the Maritime area, the majority of the Acadian population lived around Grand-Pré, Annapolis Royal, Pigiguit and Beaubassin. But the Deportation upset everything in this landscape.

Following exile, a number of Acadians came back to the Maritime provinces. Their ancestral lands, now occupied by British colonists, were lost to them forever. Of course, they had no alternative but to look elsewhere, but where? Reluctant for many years to grant lands to Acadians, the British authorities lay down strict restrictions, including the rule that Acadians must settle in small isolated groups. Motivated by a certain will to settle apart from the English, the majority of Acadian families thus had no choice but to choose coastal areas. On top of this will was the intense pressure from British colonists who monopolized the best sites and were more and more numerous from the 1780s onward.

Some sites already settled before 1755, such as Memramcook and Petitcodiac, once again became hosts to Acadian families as early as the 1760’s, although most regrouped, forming the settlements of St. Mary’s Bay, Caraquet, Bouctouche, Rustico, etc. Other communities, like Saint Basile, in the depths of the New Brunswick forest, were also settled by Acadians in the lat e18th century, while those occupying the vicinity of Sainte Anne (Fredericton) were pushed back by the massive arrival of Loyalists, who forced the Acadian displacement towards the North.

In fact, the new Acadia was to more and more make its home in this new province as early as the late 19th century. One may henceforth speak of a New Brunswick-based Acadia, split up over several areas, where Acadians were to become the pillars of the development of Acadian culture and of the struggle for its survival.

© Village Historique Acadien, Province of New Brunswick, 2003. All Rights Reserved.

Most Acadian communities before the Deportation were located in the Nova Scotia peninsula or on the southernmost coast of present-day New Brunswick. Prince Edward Island. Île Saint-Jean and Cape Breton, then Île Royale, also had a few Acadian villages, settled mostly after 1710.

Unknown
Main Acadian settlements before the Deportation, map found in Melvin Gallant (ed.), Les Maritimes: trois provinces à découvrir, Moncton, Éditions d’Acadie 1987 p. 91.

© Éditions d’Acadie


Après la Déportation, la majorité des Acadiens s'installe le long de la côte Est du Nouveau-Brunswick, alors qu'en Nouvelle-Écosse on les retrouvent surtout à l'extrémité Sud de la province.

Unknown
Main Acadian settlements before the Deportation, map found in Melvin Gallant (ed.), Les Maritimes: trois provinces à découvrir, Moncton, Éditions d’Acadie 1987 p. 91.

© Éditions d’Acadie


The village of Caraquet, founded around 1760, is one of the most important settlements of the new Acadia.

In the foreground, Paulin and Dominion Hotels

PANB
c. 1905
P 38-272
© PANB


Wooden chapel and second church of the village

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, new Acadian settlements are established in inland areas. The agricultural colony of Allardville, founded around 1932, is a good example of these new agricultural colonies.

Village Historique Acadien
c. 1937
© Village Historique Acadien, Province of New Brunswick, 2003. All Rights Reserved.


Learning Objectives

The learner will:
  • locate on a Canadian map the original location of Acadia and where it was situated after the Deportation;
  • explain the main reasons that had the Acadians move completely to the southernmost part of New Brunswick today.

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