History of Lamèque
History of the island and its first inhabitants
The Mi’kmaq were present in the Lamèque Island way before the first permanent settlers came around in 1790. Mi’kmaq lived inland during winter but went out and camped near bodies of water for their fishing needs when spring came before going back to their villages inland in late fall, so we can’t say that they were permanent settlers.
Jesuits founded a mission in Miscou in 1634 and abandoned it around 1662. During its voyage in Acadie around 1685-1686, Intendant DeMeulles came onshore shortly in Miscou late October-early November 1685 due to bad weather. There's no mention about an European or Indian presence in his log book.
The Acadian Deportation of 1755 would change everything. The “Grand Chipagan” area (on and around the present Town of Shippagan) welcomed some refugees. Bazagier 1761 census reveals the presence of five Acadian families, 26 people in all, living in Grand Chipagan.
When Acadians decided to settle in the Acadian Peninsula, they chose areas close to fishing grounds but also near hay fields and to salt marshes, which was used as animal feed. Lamèque was the answer to their prayers.
According to local tradition, the first Acadian settler on the island was Jean-Baptiste Robichaud, born in 1751. However, it was a Chiasson who was the first to settle on a piece of land on the actual site of the Town of Lamèque. Jean-Chrysostôme Chiasson came from Prince Edward Island; before settling in Lamèque around 1802, he lived for a short period of time in Petit-Shippagan, at the northern tip of the island. He was married to Anne Daigle.
November 6th, 1966, is an important day in Lamèque history as the village was incorporated on that date. Bertin Jean was the first mayor of the new village, from 1967 to 1969. Normand Haché, Tilmond Kerry, Alphonse Noël and Martin Paulin were councillors.
On September 1st, 1982, Lamèque became a town and the mayor at that time was Jean-Charles Chiasson with Eymard Chiasson, Réginald Paulin, Frédéric Duguay, Tilmond Kerry, Égide Paulin and Calixte Chiasson as councillors.
Here are the mayors of the town of Lamèque since 1966:
|1967 - 1969||Bertin Jean|
|1969 - 1977||Rufin Chiasson|
|1977 - 1978||Valier Chiasson|
|1980 - 1980||Michel Haché|
|1980 - 1989||Jean-Charles Chiasson|
|1989 – 2004||Réginald Paulin|
|2004 -||Rénald Haché|
Statistics and demography on the islands
On Lamèque and Miscou Islands, there are over 200 family surnames. The top three:
There are approximately 2588 households on the islands, with the total population around 7000.
Here are some other families present on the islands:
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