Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 41 > Page 23 - Searching for Cape Breton Folk Songs

Page 23 - Searching for Cape Breton Folk Songs

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1986/1/1 (380 reads)

The Early History of St. AFjqfe (Englishtown) (24) An address by Rev. Fr. R. P. Pacifique at St. Anne's, C. B., August 25th, 19-30, on the occasion of the unveiling of a Cairn with Tablet under the auspices of the Historic Sites and Monuments Board. There is a well known short maxim used as a kind of watchword in my province of Que? bec, "I do remember," meaning that we must have in our mind the glories of the past and also the lessons thereof. Now, if TO REMEMBER were a privilege of Quebec, we should say today that here we are in a dis? tant corner of it. But no, there is no need to be a citizen of Quebec to remember. Men like Judge Crowe and other worthy mem? bers of the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada can well compete with any French Canadian, not only to remember biit to make others remember. We are here for the dedication of a tablet prepared by them--an engraved Remembrance-- purporting to mark one of the oldest his? toric sites of the country, and to recall significant events of our early history. The tablet states first that this place WAS ESTABLISHED IN 1629. This is true, ex? actly true. It we know. We have not to say "about" or "likely" or "maybe." There is no fancy here, no probability; we have plain documents. So 301 years ago--this is a long time for a young country--this very month of August, the 28th day, like next Thursday, a French captain, Charles Daniel, of Dieppe, en? tered with his crew this bay and harbour. The bay was called at the time Chibou, or Grand Chibou, an Indian word meaning river; but the Indians themselves called it, and call it still, by quite a different name, Mtjegatitjg, of which they don't care to give the meaning. It was not there that Daniel was sent, nor to Bay of Baleines, both unknown to him, but to Quebec with provisions and dis? patches. It was a heavy storm which parted him from his companions on the banks of Newfoundland and threw his ship on the eastern shore of Cape Breton. I say this because some French writers have blamed him for staying here, where he had no er? rand entrusted to him, instead of going to Quebec. But he does not deserve the blame. He repaired here on account of the storm; and the next day he sent ten men into the country to seek some Indians and then re? ceived the very sad information that not only were many English men-of-war in the St. Lawrence River, but also that the city had been captured by Kirke one month previ? ous (July 19, 1629); so it was useless and very dangerous for him to go there just to CONTtNUED NEXT PAGE
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