On 16 February 1935, an anonymous poem appeared in the pages of The Argosy, honouring the early Acadian settlers of Sackville. It began:
Arsenault, Boudreau, Legere, LeBlanc
Dug the dykes and built them strong
They salvaged a treasure out of the sea
For Anderson, Fawcett, Wood and Lea
This virtual exhibition, like the poem, serves as an acknowledgement of the vital part played by the Acadians in the cultivation of the marshlands of the Tantramar region and in the early development of Sackville.
This project began with the aim of unearthing and giving voice to the underrepresented community of Acadians at Mount Allison University. In the process of going through the records in the university’s archival holdings, it quickly became evident that the Acadian community had deep and meaningful roots at the university and that their presence on campus went further back than anticipated at the outset of this research.
This website provides a glimpse into this previously untold story. It highlights significant moments in the history of Acadians in Sackville and its immediate surroundings and chronicles the experience of these individuals as told by the records in the archival holdings. Contained in this virtual exhibition are photographs, records, and details that document the early Acadian students, faculty, and staff of the Mount Allison institutions as well as events hosted on campus relating to Acadians. This information is complemented by lists of related publications created by students and faculty, records held in the university archives, and further resources for researchers.
The Mount Allison University Libraries and Archives are pleased that the history of Acadians may be better understood and appreciated through this virtual exhibition, and we hope that you will enjoy learning more about their role in the development of Mount Allison University.