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Albert County, New Brunswick

Genealogy

 

 

New Brunswick Historical Tidbits

By Mitch Biggar  


 

Fort Beausejour

 

To counteract the English building Fort Lawrence, the Governor General of New France, Jacques-Pierre de la Jonquiere ordered the construction of Fort Beausejour.  The Fort was built to the west of Fort Lawrence at Point-a-Beausejour.  This site overlooks the Missaguash River and the Cumberland Basin.

Fort Beausejour was named after an early settler, construction started in April of 1751.    Lieutenant Gaspart-Joseph de Lery was in charge of the construction phase.  The Fort consisted of palisade walls in the shape of a pentagon with fiove metre high earthwork and bastions at the angles.    

By 1754 Fort Beausejour  was a much more substantial structure then the nearby Fort Lawrence.  Fort Beausejour had four inside casements, a powder magazine, barracks, officer quarters, and could house 800 men.  On the outskirts of the fortress there homes, stores, a hospital, and a church.    

Fort Beausejour was captured by the English on June 16, 1755 and was renamed Fort Cumberland.  The fortress saw action during the Eddy Rebellion of 1776 but was abandoned in   1835.  It was restored in the1920's and is one of the province's most important historic sites.  


 

The Southeast 1763-1775    

In 1763 vessel after vessel brought settlers from Connecticut, Rhode Island and other   New England colonies to Sackville. By 1772 however only three families were left in Sackville.   Most of the settlers went to Dorchester. In 1765 nine fam,ilies of German origin named Lutz, Stieff, Treitz, Johness, Wortman, Ricker and Copple came in a sloop and landed at Port Royal.   From here they went up the Bay of Fundy and up the Petitcodiac River to Tanacada Creek.    Ever since their arrival Tanacada Creek has been called Halls Creek after the Captain of the   sloop. These nine families settled at what are now Moncton  and Hillsborough. They were later   joined by disbanded soldiers from Fort Cumberland. In 1765 a London merchant named   William Hannington came to Shediac. Returning Acadians came to this part of the province also   settling at Cocagne, Shediac, Belliveau, Fox Creek, and Memramcook.


 

The Spy of Beausejour

Perhaps the secondest most notorious traitor in New Brunswick history was a man   named Thomas Pichon.  Pichon was educated in Paris and served with the French Army in   Europe. In 1751 Pichon became secretary to Governor Jean-Louis de Raymond. Then in 1753   Pichon found himself serving at Fort Beausejour.    

At Fort Beausejour Pichon acted as chief clerk for stores and served as a scribe to the   officers. Pichon even helped Le Loutre edit his letters. It was his scribing duties that gave him   access to official documents.  Pichon began to sell information to the British. Pichon received   money for providing Captain George Scott and other officers at Fort Lawrence with copies of   official French documents.    

Pichon provided the British with many documents including the Acadian census, military   plans and warnings of French attack.  Pichon even gave the British the necessary plans needed   to overtake the Fort.  It is believed that Robert Moncton would have never been able to take   Fort Beausejour without Pichon's help.  After the fall of Fort Beausejour Pichon continued to   spy in Halifax and then in London.

 


 

Dorchester's Baron

In 1823 Edward Baron Chandler began his legal career in Dorchester. That same year he was elected to the House of Assembly. In 1843 Lieutenant Governor Sir William Colebrooke appointed Chandler to the Executive Council. Chandler remained the leader of the Council until the Smasher Victory of 1854. Although Chandler retained his Westmorland seat it was the Smasher Victory that would end his leadership role in politics.

Chandler turned down a seat in the Canadian Senate in 1867 but accepted an appointment as a railway commissioner. Chandler was in charge of railroad construction from Halifax to Montreal. Being in charge he succeeded in diverting the railway through his hometown of Dorchester.

Chandler also lobbied hard for the federal penitentiary to be built in his town. In 1879 he sold a piece of his own property to the government. That lot would become the penitentiary's location.

Edward Baron Chandler remained in public life for almost sixty years. He spent his last two years as Lieutenant Governor of New Brunswick.

 


 

Special thanks goes out to Mitch Biggar, a New Brunswick writer who has provided me with a few of his articles for the enjoyment of researchers. These articles have appeared in New Brunswick Newspapers over the years.

 


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