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Brief History of Grand Lake Meadows Settlers

Settlers were attracted to GLM for several reasons.

  • Rich soil for planting crops
  • The system of rivers and lakes provided relatively easy transportation throughout the year [Wikipedia, 2013].
  • The abundant rivers and lakes provided fresh fish year-round
  • The moderated climate and rich ecosystem was full of animals which provided meat and leather skins used for clothing and shelter [Wikipedia, 2013].
  • Resources were available for making tools [Queens County Heritage, 2013].
  • During the 1700s fur trading was abundant primarily:

  • muskrat
  • Though also traded were:

  • otter
  • mink
  • fox
  • bobcat
  • fisher
  • Fall hunting to provide winter meat of waterfowl and moose were the primary focus, and to a lesser degree small game birds such as grouse were hunted.

    In the winter ice fishing of smelt, perch and pickerel fed the inhabitants.

    Fiddleheads were harvested in the spring from the riverbeds and forest floods.

    By the early 1600s, GLM was inhabited by Maliseet (Wolastoqiyik) and Mi’kmaq peoples [GNB, 2013].

    In 1659 the first English trading post on the St. John River was established at the mouth of the Jemseg River [Wikipedia, 2013]. During the 18th century settlers including the Dutch, French, English, and Loyalists came to this area and vied for the rich resources [Queens County Heritage, 2013]. In 1667 the land was turned over to French control, and the trading post was used for both trading and military influence [Genealogist, 2009]. In 1674 the area was seized by the Dutch, who controlled it for several months before the Acadians were able to reclaim it [Genealogist, 2009] .

    The last change of ownership occurred in 1713 when the English asserted control over the area [Genealogist, 2009]. In 1783, during the American Revolution, Loyalists were expelled from America and many of them came to GLM to settle in the Jemseg area [Genealogist, 2009]. By the 1940s over 900 families inhabited the GLM. These settlers were (primarily) farmers and foresters.

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    Content last updated 2013. University of New Brunswick, Geodesy and Geomatics Engineering Department