A History of Canada - Vol. 2

By Gustave Lanctot; Margaret M. Cameron | Go to book overview

CHAPTER SIXTEEN
ACADIA AND THE ENGLISH COLONIES
1670-1689

Reoccupation of Acadia. English colonies. The Abenakis. Grandfontaine's difficulties. Chambly taken prisoner. A Canadian Governor, La Vallière. Anglo-Indian hostilities. The leader of the Abenakis, Baron de Saint- Castin. Encroachment on Acadian territory, trade and fisheries. The Acadia Fisheries Company. Governor Perrot and his contraband trade. English depredations and A benaki reprisals.

Acadia had been in British hands from 1658 to 1667, and, although it was officially restored to France by the Treaty of Breda, it was not until 1670 that the colony was actually handed over to French administrators. The first of these was Governor Hubert d'Andigny, Chevalier de Grandfontaine who had commanded a company in the Carignan regiment. With eight engagés and a guard of twenty- five soldiers he established his residence a few leagues from the frontier at Pentagoët. This seemed to him a more strategic position than that of Port Royal for resisting any encroachments on the part of the English colonies. The whole of Acadia, from the Kennebec River frontier to Cape Breton had only 441 inhabitants, and of these 363 were concentrated in the region of Potty Royal. This was a surprisingly small population in view of the country's great natural advantages: rich furs north of the Bay of Fundy, good harbours on the Atlantic, abundant fisheries on the banks thirty miles to the south, good agricultural and pasture lands, timber for building, and excellent coal in Cape Breton. In short, Acadia possessed, as de Meulles reported later, everything that was needed to make it the finest colony in the world. She could become, wrote another unidentified admirer, "mistress of all America." 1

The one dark spot in this otherwise perfect picture was the presence on Acadia's doorstep of Massachusetts, which, with her

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