The Farmers' Bank of Rustico
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Acadians on PEI

 

Period     1758-1860

Mount Carmel

The community was originally known as Le Grand Ruisseau (Large Stream) The name Mont Carmel comes from the fact that the village was dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary under the name Notre-Dame-du-Mont-Carmel (Our Lady of Mount Carmel).

The Evangeline Region

The Acadian families who moved to the Evangeline area did so because of the leasehold system of land tenure the British established on Prince Edward Island in 1767. In the early 1800's a group of Acadian tenants from Lot 17 abandoned their well-established farms in the hope of finding a better life in Lot 15. They founded the communities of La Roche (Egmont Bay) and Le Grand Ruisseau (Mont Carmel).

Most of the Acadian families who moved to Lot 15 became squatters and hoped that they would in time have the opportunity to buy the land that they lived on. It was not until 1828 several years after the Island government confiscated Lot 15 from the proprietor that about 60 Acadians were able to buy the land they were occupying.

As a gesture to addressing some of the wrongs perpetrated against the Acadians, in 1850 the colonial government gave the Acadians the opportunity to purchase land in Lot 15 at a reduced rate. This explains why the Evangeline area has such a homogeneous population where the French language is most prevalent.

Agriculture was the chief occupation in the Mont Carmel area at the beginning of the century. The local fishery was for domestic consumption.

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