Did you know
that the year 2004 marked the 400th anniversary
of the beginnings of continuous French settlement in North America?
In 1604, Pierre Dugua Sieur de Mons arrived at Saint Croix, a small
island near what is today the Maine (USA)-New Brunswick border. It was
here that he attempted year-round French settlement in North America,
an event which symbolizes the founding of Acadie.
de Mons was the famed explorer and mapmaker, Samuel de Champlain, who
would inspire the exploration of both Canada and the United States.
Sieur de Mons went to establish the
Port Royal Habitation in 1605 while Champlain founded Quebec in 1608.
And, with the following generations, French culture took root in North
America. Today, Atlantic Canada boasts a vibrant Acadian population.
There are now over 16 million North Americans of French descent, and
more than 8 million have French as their mother tongue.
In 1958, The Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada recommended
that Saint Croix Island be recognized for its national historic
significance to Canada, and in 1984, the United States Congress
designated Saint Croix Island as International Historic Site in
recognition of its historical significance to both countries.
Start planning your itinerary to view Saint Croix Island as well as the
other fascinating sites which tell the the story of French exploration
and setlement of North America.