Acadieville is a quaint rural community located along the Kouchibouguac River, just west of Kouchibouguac National Park. The majority of its inhabitants are French-speaking, with a strong connection to their Acadian heritage.
In 1971, during the parish’s centennial celebrations, the Founders Monument was erected as a tribute to the community’s origins. The inscription on the monument reads: “Tribute to the Founders. Here was celebrated the first Mass by Bishop Richard in 1871 on the property of Mr. Clement Daigle.”
The first church in Acadieville, built by Bishop Marcel-François Richard in June 1873, now serves as a chapel. Bishop Richard is said to have built fourteen other churches.
The inaugural mass was held in 1873 in a wooden house belonging to Clement Daigle and Ludivine Goguen. The first mass in Acadieville took place in Dominique Gallant’s roundwood house in 1871. It was at the site of the monument that the bishop announced the church’s construction in March 1873. This church, built in the same year, stands just north of the existing church, across the creek
Acadieville Cemetery dating from 1880 contains a lot of genealogical information.
The founding of Acadieville in 1868 appealed to many young people from Saint-Louis and the neighboring areas. At that time, landowners were hesitant to divide their properties, leaving their children with limited options for independence. Acadieville provided an opportunity for them to acquire fertile land near their families and friends.
It was also anticipated that a railroad connecting Montreal and Halifax would pass through the new parish, close to the current church. This prospect excited the surrounding parishes, eager for the railroad’s economic benefits. Encouraged by the promise of the Intercolonial project, a key component of the Canadian Confederation, the people of Saint-Louis embraced the idea of colonizing new lands and preventing the fragmentation of their farms.
In 1868, a group of individuals from St. Louis requested land concessions from the provincial government under the Free Grant Act, a new law allowing people to acquire Crown land. The request was granted, and Surveyor J.G. Layton drafted the Acadieville Concession Land Plan. Urbain Johnson was appointed as the Lands Officer.
On December 8, 1868, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, the future settlers celebrated their impending departure for the new lands with family and friends. They set out the following day to forge a path and construct a bridge across the Grand Kagebuguette River, now known as the Kouchibouguac River. Some settlers remained over the winter, while others returned to St. Louis the following spring. Urbain Johnson worked tirelessly to promote the new colony and was elected to the provincial government in 1869.
Unfortunately, the Intercolonial railway bypassed Acadieville. In 1869, the federal government deemed it more cost-effective to reroute the railroad further west, leading some settlers to relocate closer to the new route.
Click on a thumbnail to see more photos.
This post has already been read 2679 times!