A 19TH Century Canadian Time Capsule

The following spring, French settlers returned. Demonts remained in France, and Pontrincourt became Governor. The King of France told Pontrincourt to receive two missionaries for the conversion of the savages. He didn’t like the Jesuit priests, one of which was Father Beart. Prior to 1613: Once again Pontrincourt travels to France, leaving his son Biencourt in charge of the colony. Biencourt makes life difficult for the two priests, and they write to France complaining of the treatment they were receiving at Port Royal. A Madame de Goucherville, concerned about the necessity to convert the savages sends two more priests along with a Monsieur Saussaye to establish a new colony apart from Port Royal. M. Saussaye took Father Beart, his (unnamed) colleague, and the two new (unnamed) priests away from Port Royal and sail to LaHave. They chose “Mount Desert” for their settlement, erected a cross and called the place St. Saviour. In the story, George says “I saw an island called Mount Desert near the village of LaHave; perhaps that was the very spot; but there are no houses there now; at least I only saw trees.” There were 25 emigrants, and 35 sailors, travelling with M. Saussaye. They had cleared some ground put up some buildings, but were attacked by the English.

1613 – “Captain Argall came with a number of English vessels, to fish on the coast of Acadia. He heard that some white people were living at Mount Desert and from the description he received of them, he thought they must be Frenchmen. France and England were not at war at this time, but Argall resolved to attack these French settlers, and perish them for trespassing on the limits of Virginia.” “The people were busy at work in different places, not suspecting that an enemy was near, when Argall sailed into their harbor. He soon took possession of two vessels that lay at anchor, and then landed his men to attack the fort. One of the priests was killed, and the other Frenchmen, who saw that the English were too strong for them, fled to the woods. While they were away, Argall found the commission, given to Saussaye by the King of France, and concealed it.” Without the commission, Saussaye would have been regarded as a pirate, who had taken land to which he had no right.
“As England and France were at peace, Argall preferred to consider these poor French people as pirates”

“The next day, Saussaye came out of the woods and surrendered himself. Argall asked him by what authority he had dared to form a settlement on land belonging to the English. Saussaye said he had a commission from the King of France, which he would show to him. He looked every where, among his papers, but of course, was unable to find it.”

“He (Argall) told Saussaye that it was plain he was a pirate, and ordered the place to be pillaged… he took all their property–every thing they had in their houses–money and clothes, and made the people prisoners. He gave them a small vessel, and told them they might go back to France, but the vessel was not large enough to take them all; then he said those, who were willing to work, might go with him to Jamestown, in Virginia. On their arrival at Jamestown, the French were put in prison, and condemned to be executed as pirates.”