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History of New Brunswick
Volume I Chapter II


DAULNAY destroyed La Tour's fort at St. John and built a new one on the opposite side of the harbor. His principal residence was at Port Royal, but his trade at St. John was large and profitable and enabled him to maintain a large force to defend Ids possessions. D'Aulnay proved an exacting and disagreeable neighbour to the English settlers of Massachusetts Ray. He was disposed to demand satisfaction from them for the assistance they had given to La Tour, but contented himself by accepting a small present and binding them down to a solemn treaty to give no countenance to his enemy La Tour. There were excellent reasons for this, for there were men in Boston who were financially interested in La Tour and were likely to be ruined if La Tour remained an exile from Acadia. He owed Sergeant Major Gibbons of Boston upwards of £2,000, and, to secure this sum, La Tour gave Gibbons a mortgage on his fort at St. John. As the fort was then in possession of D'Aulnay the security did not appear to be of much value, but the sum secured was not payable until February 1652, and by that time La Tour was again in possession of his fort and master of Acadia. This was brought about by a series of events which have-all the flavor of a romance.

D'Aulnay was not liked by the people of Boston, and in Acadia, where he was still better known, he was liked still less. Nicholas Denys, a contemporary, who published a book on Acadia in 1072, describes him as arbitrary and tyrannical and opposed to the settlement of the country. He removed all the, people from La Have and compelled them to reside at Port Royal under the grins of his fort, keeping them in the condition of slaves. It paid him to do this, because they were able to provide him with food for his garrison, which otherwise he would have been compelled to import from France, but beyond this he did not go. His business was to trade with the Indians and the establishment of settlements was always a menace to this trade, for there was a disposition on the part of the settlers to engage in it on their own account. D'Aulnay, however, did not live long to enjoy his good fortune, for, during the summer of 1650, he was drowned in the river at Port Royal by the upsetting of a canoe. The Indians saw the accident and went to his assistance, and the servant who was with him was actually saved. But one of the Indians, remembering that D'Aulnay had beaten him a few days before, took care to drown him before he pulled him ashore. His affairs were in a state of great confusion. He owed an enormous sum to one Emmanuel le Borgne, a resident of France, from whom he had obtained supplies and money to enable him to carry on wars against La Tour. This indebtedness made Le Borgne a claimant for the possession of Acadia and introduced a new clement of strife into that country. D'Auluay's influence in France 'lid not survive hi.s death. Early in the year 1631 La Tour obtained a new commission as governor of Acadia, which also confirmed him in his territorial rights in that country. Two years later he married D'Auluay's widow, who seems to have thought this the only certain way of protecting her large interests in Acadia By this second marriage La Tour had five children, some of the descendants of whom still reside in Acadia. Prior to his marriage he had again taken up his residence at St. John, and the fort there was, by the marriage settlement, given to his wife for her life time. But La Tour was not destined to remain long in undisturbed possession of this fort. D'Aulnav's creditor, Le Borgne, in 1653 came to Acadia to take possession of the deceased governor's property under judgments of the French Courts. He seized Port Royal, and grown bold by his achievement, lie seems to have thought that he might as well take possession of all Acadia and drive La Tour and Denys out of the country. Benvs had come to Acadia in 1632 with Isaac de Ilazilly, and was now the owner of a fishery at La Have, and was engaged :n establishing a colony at St. Peter's in. the island of Cape Breton. Le Borgne put a stop to the oj>erations of Denys at St. Peters's and burnt his establishment at La Have, taking the owner prisoner. La Tour was to have been the next victim, but before his plans could be carried out an English force appeared and seized both Port Royal and Fort La Tour. This was a squadron of four warships that had been fitted out by Oliver Cromwell against the Dutch of New-York. When it reached Boston peace had been concluded with the Dutch, hut the Massachusetts people thought the occasion a favorable one to drive the French out of Acadia. Accordingly a land force of 500 men, under the command of Major Robert Sedgewick, was raised in great haste and embarked on board the warships. Neither Port Royal nor Fort La Tour was in a position to resist such a force, and so the whole of Acadia passed into the hands of the English and was not restored to France until after the treaty of Breda in 1657.

This last stroke of fortune, which deprived La Tour both of his fort and his territory, would have been ruinous to a less resourceful man. So far from having that effect, it gave him twelve years of peace and comparative prosperity prior to his death in 1666, La Tour's father had been connected with Sir William Alexander's scheme of colonization; both father and son had been made baronets of Nova Scotia at his instance, and both had received from him an extensive grant of territory in Acadia, embracing some 4,500 square miles. La Tour was therefore able to approach Cromwell not only as a Scotch baronet, but as a land owner under a title-derived from an English King. The result of his efforts was that in July, 1656, he received, in conjunction with Sir Thomas Temple and William Crowne, a grant of the greater part of Acadia, extending from what is now Lunenburg in Nova Scotia to the River St. George in Maine, including the whole coast of the Bay of Fundy on both sides and an hundred leagues inland. Temple was. appointed Governor of this vast domain, and La Tour soon afterwards sold him his interests in Acadia and retired into private life.

Temple rebuilt the fort at the mouth of the St. John and erected a fortified trading post at Jemseg. Unfortunately for him Cromwell died and the restoration of Charles II. followed soon afterwards. Temple's title to Acadia was attacked, and for a time he was deprived of his governorship. In the end he was successful in having his title to Acadia confirmed and his governorship restored, but he did not enjoy his possessions long, for by the Treaty of Breda, England agreed to restore Acadia to France. This was finally done m July, 1670, the Chevalier Grand Fontaine taking possession of the country on behalf of the King of France.

The English occupation of Acadia between 1654 and 1670 did not extend to that portion of it which bordered on the Gulf of St. Lawrence and Bay Chaleur. Denys, who had been driven from St. Peter's by Le Borgne, obtained a commission from the King of France as governor of that region and took up his abode at Nepisiquit, on a point of land on the north side of Batlinrst harbour. He had also an establishment on the Miramiclii and a fishing station at Miscon, and employed a large number of men in the fisheries. Denys returned to France in 1070, leaving his sou Richard in possession of his property. The missions on the North Shore were also continued during the English occupation.

Grand Fontaine, the new French Governor of Acadia, established himself at Penobscot in 1070. The King was very anxious that Acadia should have a population, and, in 1671, sent out sixty persons from France, five of whom were females. During the same year a census of Acadia was taken by the King's orders. The result was not cheering, for the entire population of the colony numbered only 342 persons, exclusive of soldiers. Of these 325 lived at Port Royal, seven at Pulmico, seven at Cape Negro and three at River A Rocheloes. There is no mention of any person residing in that portion of Acadia which is now New Brunswick, but as the census was taken by Laurent Rolin, a Grey friar, who also was performing the duties of Cure at Port Royal, the omission of any settlers residing on the Hirainiehi or at Nepisiquit may be accounted for. There is little doubt that Richard Denys was residing either at Miramichi or Nepisiquit when the census of 1671 was taken. Another Frenchman, Philip Enaud, was living at Nepisiquit in 1686, but it is probable that he was not there in 1671.

Grand Fontaine ceased to be governor of Acadia, in Hay, 1673, but his period of administration was distinguished by the formation of a settlement which was destined to grow to great importance and wealth,, the first permanent settlement in northern Acadia. This was the Chignecto colony which was established by Jacob Bourgeois, a resident of Port Royal The extensive marsh lands of Chignecto which now sustain a large and prosperous population had been known for almost three-quarters of a century, but it was not until the year 1672 that they attracted colonists. The Chignecto colony grew rapidly, and in the course of years quite over-shadowed the mother colony at Port Royal.

Chambly, who had been an officer in the Carignan Salieres regiment, succeeded Grand Fontaine as Governor of Acadia, but the force under his command was so small that in 1671 a Dutch corsair, named Arensan, captured his fort at Penobscot and also the fort at St. John which was under the command of his lieutenant, de Marson. The people of Massachusetts had viewed the surrender of Acadia to France with much indignation, but they were still less pleased to see that country in the possession of the Dutch. Accordingly they sent a force under Captain Hampton to dispossess the latter. This was accomplished and the Dutch driven away, an act which produced remonstrances from the Dutch government. The latter, however, took nothing by their complaints and the French resumed possession of their fort at St. John. That at Penobscot was abandoned ami never again occupied by the French government. It soon afterwards passed into the hands of the Baron de St. Castin, a retired officer of the Carignan Salieres regiment, who married a daughter of the Chief of the Penobscot Indians and became the virtual ruler of that tribe. His presence at Penobscot had a much greater effect in advancing the interests of France among the Indians than the maintainance of a fort there by the government would have had, and it had the additional advantage oi costing the French King nothing.

De Marson, who was the commander of the French fort at St. John, acted as governor in the absence of Chamblv and was appointed governor of Acadia in 1078, but died the same year. He was the father of Louise Elizabeth de Joibert, who became the wife of the Marquis do Vaudreuil, who was governor of of Canada for twenty years, and the mother of that Marquis de Vaudreuil who was the last French governor of Canada. Tins lady was horn at Fort St. John in Acadia.

The period beginning with the governorship of Grand Fontaine was remarkable for the number of grants of territory in Acadia that were given to men who desired to become seigniors. The Seigneurial system was in operation in Canada and it was thought that it was equally suited to Acadia. But, owing to many causes, it never took root here and the most flourishing settlements were those in which it did not exist. Between 1672 and 1090 a large part of the territory bordering on the St. John River was granted to seigniors, but the result was very disappointing. The census of 1080 showed sixteen persons residing on the St. John River in that year; in 1693 the number was twenty, in 1695 it had risen to fifty-nine. The census of three years later showed a decline. Even these inhabitants, few as they were, did not live by agriculture but by trading with the Indians. The difference between the seigneurial settlements on the St. John and a purely agricultural settlement is illustrated by the case of Chignecto, which in 1680 had 127 inhabitants although it had only been founded fourteen years before, or eight times as many as all the seigniories on the St. John River.

The Chignecto settlement was impeded by the claims of Michael LeNeuf, Sieur dela Valliere, who in 1076 obtained a grant of a large territory at Chignecto which included the settlement there. This man was for several years commandant in Acadia and he turned his opportunities to his own advantage by engaging in illicit trade. In 1680 he had quite an establishment at Chignecto, keeping five servants and having sixty acres of land Tinder cultivation. He had eight children, but his wife, who was a •laughter of Nicholas Denys, did not live with him. Among La Valliere's possessions were seventy muskets. We may infer from this that the seignior of Chignecto was something more than a farmer and trader. He was in fact a smuggler and, unless greatly belied, something of a pirate. La Valliere obtained another large Seigniory in 1700 at Shepody, which embraced lands that had been occupied by settlers from Port Royal and Chignecto two years previously. He hail disputes with these settlers whom he would have liked to make his tenants, but an order of the Council of State forbade him to disturb them.

De Marson obtained three seigneurial grants on the St. John River, one at the mouth of the river on the east side, one at Jemsegand the third at Nashwark. None of these seigniories appears to have been improved and they were forfeited or regranted to others after De Marson's death. His widow, in 1091, thirteen years after his death, received a grant of some fifty square miles of territory on the St. John River which included wdiat is now Gagetown, but she made no effort to settle it and it passed into other hands. In 1672 Martin D'Arpentiginy, Sieur de Martignon, received a grant of territory oil the west side of the St. John River at its mouth, of six leagues square. De Martignon was a son-in-law of La Tour, having married his daughter Jeanne, who was born in 1620, and was therefore probably the child of an Indian wife. Dc Martignon was residing 011 his property at St. John in 1080 when the census was taken. He was then 70 years old and as no mention is made of him in the census of 1093, he had probably died before it was taken. Four sons of Mathieu D'Amour, a member of the Governor's Council at Quebec, were living in Acadia at this time. Rene D'Amour, who took the title of Chignacourt, in 1684 received a large grant at Meductic. In the same year Mathieu, whose title was Freneuse, received a grant of the territory on both sides of the St. John River, from Jemseg to the Naslnvaak, while at the same time Louis, whose title was de Chauffours, obtained a grant of the Richibucto River and adjacent territory. In 1695 the fourth brother Bernard, Sieur de Plenne, received a grant of the Kennebeccasis River and territory. Rene d'Amour was wholly engaged in trade with the Indians and did nothing to improve his seigniory. Mathieu in 1686 had a residence on his seigniory opposite the mouth of the Oromocto River, and in 1095 there were three houses and twenty-four persons in this seiguiorj. At this time Louis D'Amour was living at Jemseg, engaged irj trade and cultivating the soil to some extent. They had come into possession of the territory formerly granted to De Marson. The population of the Jemseg seigniory in 1(595 was eleven persons of whom eight were servants. According to the same census fourteen persons were then living at Naslnvaak in addition to the garrison at Fort St. Joseph.

La Vailiere held the command in Acadia and was virtually its governor from the death ol De Marson in the summer of 1678 to the appointment of Perrot in 1684. His term of office was mainly remarkable for the quarrels between him and Bergier, wdio was at the head of a company which was carrying on the shore fisheries on the St. John River and at other points in Acadia. La Vailiere not oidv engaged in trade with the English of Boston but gave them licenses to fish, thereby interfering with Bergier's. licenses. Perrot, who succeeded hint, had been governor of Montreal and his reputation was very bad. He looked upon Acadia as a field for the exercise of his peculiar talents as a trader and smuggler and not with any View to the i uterests of its people or of the King. In 16S7 he was replaced by De. Menneval, a soldier, one of the sons of Charles le Moyne, Seigneur of Longueil. This officer established himself at Port Royal and began the erection of a new fort there, but in May, 1690, while it was still unfinished, an English expedition from Boston, under the command of Sir Win. Phips, appeared in the Basin and compelled him to surrender. De Menneval and the seventy soldiers whom he commanded were sent to France and Acadia once more passed into the hands of the English. Phips was too intent on the capture of Quebec which he attempted that year to trouble himself much about Acadia, so lie contented himself with causing the inhabitants of Port Royal to take the oath of allegiance to the King of England, and organized a sort of provisional government of which Chevalier, a sergeant of the garrison, was made president, with a council oi six inhabitants. At this time there was no military force on the St. John, all the forts there having been abandoned after the death of De Marson in 1678. Villebon, a brother of Menneval, had been sent from France to Acadia with ten recruits, 1 a vessel that carried supplies to the colony, and he arrived at Port Royal a few days after the English had left it. As Villebon had no force with him sufficient to garrison Port Royal he decided to take refuge in the St. John River, which could not be so easily reached by an enemy. After a conference with the Indians at Jemseg he went to Quebec and from thence to Prance, from which he returned to Acadia in September, 1681, with a commission as governor of the colony. He established himself in the fort at Jemseg with fifty men and proceeded to organize the Indians into w ar parties to ravage and destroy the English settlements. This cruel warfare continued for many years, the leader in most of the Indian expeditions against the new English settlements being an officer named Villieu, who was a son-in-law of Ija Vailiere. The English were not slow to retaliate and humanity blushes at the recital of the atrocities that were committed. The moving cause of all these cruel deeds was the governor at Quebec, who thus sought to check the progress of the English settlements. But this policy proved to be most unwise in the end, for it hardened the determination of the colonies to destroy French power in North America.

During the summer of 1692 Villebon removed his. garrison from Jemseg to Nashwaak and there on a point of land, at the junction of that river with the St. John, began the erection of Fort St. Joseph, a palisaded work of four bastions. This fort had a great advantage over the fort at Jemseg in being much nearer the principal Indian settlement which was at Meductic. The Indians were brought still nearer by one of those periodical visitations of disease, which have done so much to destroy the red men. In 1004 a mysterious sickness broke out among the Indians on the St. John River, which carried off upwards of one hundred and twenty persons, including the chief and many of their best warriors, and its ravages were so great that Meductic. was abandoned for several years. Many of the Indians removed to Aucpaque, a place some seven miles above Fort St. Joseph, while others took up their residence farther up the liver. The Indians of the St. John were always in alliance with the Micmacs, who lived on the other side of the Bay of Fundy and on the Gulf of St. Laurence, and the Abenaquis tribes who dwelt in the territory to the westward, and all three tribes were usually represented in their war parties. Treachery and cruelty were the leading features of the Indian character, yet there is little doubt that they would have been willing to remain at peace with the English if the French had not been bent on provoking war.

The only warlike deed in which the Indians at that time took part which was worthy of commendation, was the capture of Fort William Henry at Pemaquid. This was a stone fort which had been built by the government of Massachusetts at a cost of £20,000. It was attacked in the summer of 1690 by a force, of 100 French and 400 Indians, aided by two French warships, and captured after a brief resistance. The fort was destroyed, but Yiliieu, who took part in the siege, on his return, was captured by an English warship. At this time also Oapt. Church, who had attained some celebrity as an Indian fighter, was sent from Massachusetts with 500 men in sloops aud whale boats to attack the French in Acadia. Church, instead of seeking Villebon in his stronghold at Naslnvaak, made a raid on the peaceful settlement at Chignecto and destroyed it, as far as he was able. He and his men remained there nine days, during which they robbed the poor people of everything moveable, killed most of their cattle and burnt down all their buildings, including the chapel. Church then made his way to St. John where he landed and attacked a small party of observation, which Villebon had stationed at the mouth of the river. Chevalier, an ensign who commanded this party, was killed and two of his men made prisoners. Church was so well contented with what he had accomplished, that he gave tip the idea of going up the St. John Liver. He was actually as far as the St. Croix on his return when he met Col. Hawthorne with a reinforcement of 200 men, who insisted on an attempt being made on Villebon's fort. Col. Hawthorne took command and the expedition set sail once more for St. John Fortunately for Villebon he had due warning of his danger from his brother Neuvillette, who had been sent to the mouth of the river to reconnoitre and Villebon wrote to Father Simon, the Recollet who lived among the Indians, asking him to bring the warriors of his mission to the assistance of the fort, and, on the 14th of October, Father Simon arrived with thirty-six of them from Auepaque. The French settlers on the river were also called, including Clignacourt and Frenense, Baptiste and nine others, who lived below Nasliwaak. On the morning of the 18th, the English made their appearance and landed below the fort on the opposite side of the Nasliwaak river. In a few hours they had intrenched themselves and had established a battery of two field guns, which began firing on the fort. This fire was vigorously returned, and the besiegers were exposed to a heavy fire of musketry from the fort and from the Indians who lined the bank of the river. On the following day the cannon fire was continued and one of the English guns dismounted and the other silenced. That evening after lighting many fires to conceal their design the English decamped and next morning the French found their camp deserted. The French had one soldier killed and two wounded in this affair. Villebon states the loss of the English to have been eight killed and seventeen wounded, but there is no English authority for this statement. The siege appears to have been very badly managed, for only a small part of the English force was employed, and it was absurd to attempt to take a fort maintaining so many guns as Fort St. Joseph, by firing at it with two small field pieces from the opposite side of the Nasliwaak River. The English on their way down the river burnt the buildings of the Seigniory of Freneuse, opposite the Oromocto, but those at Jemseg were not touched. Two inhabitants of Chignecto, Germain Bourgeois and Pierre Arsenault, who had been taken prisoners by Church, were left by the English near the mouth of that river. Freneuse died from the exposure he was subjected to during the siege, and this was perhaps the most important result of it, for his widow, who was a sort of Acadian Cleopatra, shook the very foundations of the state for some years by her amours, and is also believed to have been the moving cause of the attack made on the English at Annapolis and the heavy loss suffered by them at Bloody Creek in 1711.

The manner in which the settlers on the lower St. John were exposed to English attacks, no doubt was the means of showing the unsuitableness of the fort at Nasliwaak as the headquarters of Acadia. Accordingly measures were taken to restore the old fort at the mouth of the river, and in the autumn of 1698 it was occupied by Villebon and his garrison and the Nasliwaak fort abandoned. Prior to that, a treaty of peace had been made at Ryswick between France and England, and this also brought the Indian raids on New England to an end for, being no longer openly assisted by the French, they were forced to make peace in January. 1699.


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