Caraquet | The Canadian Encyclopedia



Caraquet, New Brunswick, incorporated as a town in 1961, population 4,248 (2016 census), 4,169 (2011 census). The town of Caraquet is located 68 km northeast of Bathurst. Its houses line the Baie de Caraquet, a rocky section of Chaleur Bay’s southern coast, offering magnificent views of the sea and the Gaspé Peninsula.

History and Economy

Attracted by the rich fishing grounds, the first French settlers arrived about 1750. Acadian refugees, Quebec fishermen and English-speaking traders followed. From 1837 to 1939 the Jersey-based Robin fishing company dominated the economy. Local industry still depends on Caraquet’s harbour.

Acadian Culture

A centre of Acadian religion and culture, in 1875 there were riots in Caraquet when the government threatened to stop funding the convent school. The Sacré Coeur College, operating here from 1899 to 1915, hosted the Acadian Convention of 1905. The headquarters of the Acadian Federation of Caisses Populaires and the Acadian Museum are in Caraquet. The Acadian Historical Village is just outside the town. The Festival Acadian attracts the best Acadian composers and performers. Caraquet is also home to one of New Brunswick's professional French-language theatre companies, Théâtre Populaire d'Acadie.