Founded as a colony on July 1st, 1867. The same year, Moosehead, Canada’s oldest brewery, was founded, meaning that it must have been one of the first things the early settlers built. They sure had their priorities right. Home of the New Brunswick Museum, established in 1842, Canada’s oldest continuously operating museum, and it’s the home of Canada’s oldest English language university, founded in 1785. Canada’s only bilingual province. Home to the Bay of Fundy, where you’ll find the highest tides on Earth, and Old Sow, the home of the largest whirlpool in the Western Hemisphere and the second largest on Earth. The most common names are Jacob and Olivia, for men and women respectively. Home of the Hartland Bridge, the world’s longest covered bridge at 428 yards long. Birthplace of actor Donald Sutherland, born in Saint John, and the wonderfully named Molly Kool, born in Alma, who became North America’s first registered female sea captain in 1939, dying as recently at 2009 at the age of 93. And it’s the home of the town of Florenceville-Bristol, where the headquarters of McCain are located and where a third of all the world’s French fries are produced. Today, we’re visiting The Picture Province, New Brunswick.
New Brunswick is a friendly, hospitable and welcoming province in Canada, bordered by Nova Scotia and Quebec, plus Maine and the Atlantic Ocean. It is the 11th largest province or territory at nearly 73,000 square miles, with the eighth largest population with nearly 755,000 people. It was named after the German city of Braunschweig, the English and French translation of which is ‘Brunswick,’ named in honour of George III, who was Duke and prince-elector of Brunswick-Lüneburg in the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation. Showoff…
The gold lion atop the flag represents the province’s connections to Braunschweig and the Monarch of Canada. The ship is a Scottish Lymphad, the traditional representation of a ship of heraldry. It symbolises shipbuilding, New Brunswick’s traditional industry. The motto is, ‘Spem reduxit,’ which is Latin for, ‘Hope Restored.’ Lovely.
This aboriginal land was founded in forestry and seaward endeavours, and as such, a tradition of sea shanties and campfire songs from the lumberjacks gave birth to a province rich in storytelling and creative expression. It’s an extremely sparsely populated place, but gatherings became commonplace, places to dance and sing, of poetry and literature, gatherings that united the thousand and one cultures flowing through the veins of this place. Roadside shows and other performing arts became popular, too, not to mention the ballet and the opera. Even today, theatre remains an important cornerstone of everyday life here. Artistic creativity inspired by a beautiful landscape, one that sparked a revolution of imagination and character. Make no bones about it, this is a creative land.
The north is dominated by the Appalachian Mountains, whilst the northwest consists of the rugged and remote Miramichi Highlands as well as the Chaleur Uplands and the Notre Dame Mountains, whilst the central lowlands are virtually uninhabited. However, what dominates most of all are the trees. Trees are everywhere here, as are small rivers, lakes and swamplands. It comes as no surprise, then, to hear that the intelligent New Brunswickians love the great outdoors, and are partial to a good old hike or a camp out in that phenomenal wilderness. They enjoy a slower pace of life, a laid back and admirable people, living in a healthy and relaxing place. The community spirit is still strong here. Festivals are common, such as Lamèque’s Peat Moss Festival and the Festival Acadien de Caraquet. People know each other well, too. It’s the type of land where you can always rely on your neighbour. A truly amazing place.
There are sights to see such as the Imperial Theatre in the city of Saint John, opening in 1913. A white wonder in the Italian Renaissance style, a lavish and empyrean beauty, tiny yet perfectly formed. And then there’s the City Hall in Fredericton, the capital of New Brunswick. A gleaming red gem, a marvellous sight to behold, opening in 1876. It commands the land it resides in, its intricate detailing indicative of its sumptuous delight.
Then there’s Sir Howard Douglas Hall in Fredericton, the aforementioned oldest university building. A bonére and supernaculum wonder, a majestic treasure of simple yet elegant shape. The canny forms defy rational convention, and instead, the building is devoured by the form of whimsy and merriment. The curving roof and the arched windows speak of a happy and joyful building, qualities one is imbued with upon sight of such splendour.
But my favourite sight of New Brunswick is Hopewell Rocks, a bonny and chimerical jewel at the heart of the Bay of Fundy. A series of gorgeous rock formations lined with trees, clinging on to the waves like the last kiss of a lifelong romance, caressing that shore with ethereal grace and upstanding humility. The domination of the brutal rocks, whilst somewhat softened by the brant sand, has less in common with harshness and more in common with the soulful tunes isangelous, which formed the backbone of this province. It beats to a timbre poetical and soothing, whilst singing a song of beginningless beauty.
New Brunswick. The province of beer, creativity and French fries.
Images (Click on Them to Enlarge)
1) The flag of New Brunswick
2) Hopewell Rocks
3) Sir Howard Douglas Hall
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