Pre-deportation Acadian Burial Grounds Recognized as Provincial Heritage Property

An Acadian cemetery dating to the 17th century received provincial recognition of its historic and cultural significance today, Sept. 18.

Lena Metlege Diab, Minister of Acadian Affairs and Francophonie, unveiled a heritage property plaque at Sainte-Famille Cemetery in Falmouth on behalf of Communities, Culture and Heritage Minister Leo Glavine.

“This monument reminds us of our longstanding Acadian history and heritage,” said Ms. Diab. “It also reminds us of the resiliency and spirit of the Acadian people. A people that continues to share its vibrant culture, its language and its traditions with all Nova Scotians and contribute greatly to making Nova Scotia the strong, diverse and dynamic province we all love.”

The Sainte-Famille Cemetery, which was used by Acadians from the Pisiquid area, was forgotten following their expulsion in 1755. It was found in 1996 as a result of work in the area. An archaeological dig that followed, carried out by the Nova Scotia Museum, established the boundaries of the cemetery which contains an estimated 300 graves.

“The designation of the Sainte-Famille Cemetery as a Nova Scotia Heritage Site is a crucial step in the long journey towards the preservation of this Acadian site that was discovered by accident in 1996,” said Susan Surette-Draper, president of Les Amis de Grand-Pré.

The cemetery is maintained by community organization Les Amis de Grand-Pré.