The History of Lawrencetown Beach

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The View of Stoney Beach

Lawrencetown in the 18th Century

The History of Lawrencetown Beach

Lawrencetown History

Between 1750– 1754, Acadian families settled in the Lawrencetown area at Hawkins Bluff above Windenfog Lane – MacDonald Hill, and along the marshland at Lawrencetown Lake. They cut hay in the marsh to feed their animals. They built dykes to push back the salt water. These French settlers were great friends of the Mi’Kmaq people. There were French settlers in the Lawrencetown area in the Early 1700’s. In 1743–1745, Governor Desbarres noted a large building on the hill where the Friis family now lives. The French Acadians burned the buildings in 1754 when the English arrived at Lawrencetown River to build the fort. They left in a hurry, with their potato crop newly planted in the ground. They moved down the coast to Chezzetcook.

 

The English Governor of Halifax (Governor Lawrence) was considering sending the German settlers who arrived in 1752, to the Lawrencetown area. These German settlers were Protestant – as were the English. Because there was no suitable harbor to anchor the ships to unload people and supplies, the Germans were sent to Lunenburg. There they established a very successful community. They went on to build they Bluenose, and to establish successful farms and a ship building industry.

 

The English Governor of Halifax (Governor Lawrence) was considering sending the German settlers who arrived in 1752, to the Lawrencetown area. These German settlers were Protestant – as were the English. Because there was no suitable harbor to anchor the ships to unload people and supplies, the Germans were sent to Lunenburg. There they established a very successful community. They went on to build they Bluenose, and to establish successful farms and a ship building industry.

 

In the year 1749, the city of Halifax was established. On March 16th 1754, a group of 20 important men in Halifax, asked Governor Charles Lawrence to grant them 20,000 acres of land in the Lawrencetown area. If this deal was approved, they would agree to help English citizens settle in the area. The land here was better for farming than the land in the immediate Halifax area. Two days later, on March 18th 1754, Governor Lawrence agreed, and Lawrencetown was born.

 

Governor Lawrence agreed to give each of these men a grant of land that was 1,000 acres in size. This land area stretched roughly from Cole Harbor to West Chezzetcook. Any English settler who agreed to move to the area was to receive one year’s food, some cattle, hogs, and chickens. They would also be given the protection of a fort and 150 troops. They would have a storehouse for the food, and some cannons.

 

Governor Lawrence knew that there would be great amounts of marsh hay, which could be cut and sent to Halifax to feed the horses and cattle. He also felt that when the farms became successful, there would be fresh vegetables for Halifax. Unfortunately, he also figured the Mi’Kmaq would be focused on attacking the English at Lawrencetown, and they would leave Halifax- Dartmouth alone.

 

On Saturday June 18th, 1754, 200 soldiers and settlers arrived in Lawrencetown. They set up camp on the Conrad Road overlooking the marshlands. That spring, as these early settlers were working to clear the land, they were attacked by the Mi’Kmaq. Four settlers, and 3 soldiers were killed in the attack. The settlers continued their efforts, and the community grew. Within two years, vegetables and hay from the salt marsh were being sold in Halifax.

 

In 1757, because of a war between England and the United States (the American Revolution), the troops at Lawrencetown were withdrawn. Because it was now unsafe, the settlement was abandoned except for fifteen people.

 

Source: http://hrsbstaff.ednet.ns.ca/jd/history_of_lawrencetown.htm

 

Pre-1700 | The 1700's | The 1800's | The 1900's


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