Former Mi'kmaq Reserve at Beaumont
Former Fort Folly Reserve
Ancienne réserve Fort Folly
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
The Former Mi'kmaq Reserve at Beaumont is a long rectangular property, comprising approximately 24 hectares, which includes a chapel, a presbytery and a cemetery. It is located on the eastern shore of the Petitcodiac River. Its main access is located on Beaumont Road in Memramcook.
The Former Mi'kmaq Reserve at Beaumont is designated a Local Historic Place for its historical significance to the region’s Mi’kmaq First Nation.
Toward the middle of the 19th century, Memramcook is believed to have had one of the largest Mi’kmaq populations in the area. In 1837, young Peter Bernard was elected chief of the region’s Mi’kmaq. Not long after, encouraged by Father Gauvreau, the parish priest of Memramcook and later Indian Commissioner, Bernard petitioned the provincial government for a piece of property where his people could settle permanently. In 1840, the provincial legislature enacted the Indian Act and authorized the magistrates in Westmorland County to obtain about 24 hectares of land in the region of Beaumont, in trust, for the Mi’kmaq of Memramcook. This reserve, named Fort Folly and often referred to as the Beaumont reserve, was located within the traditional territory of the people of Kwesawék Amlamkuk, i.e. “the delta where the multicoloured rivers meet.” This First Nations population in Beaumont was the first, prior to Confederation, to obtain land reserved for their exclusive use and was also the first in New Brunswick to have a chapel erected on their reserve, in this case, Saint Anne’s Chapel, built in 1842. This Georgian inspired chapel has a simple 1-story rectangular massing and a central bell tower on the front façade.
Abandoned by the Mi’kmaq around the mid-20th century, The Former Mi'kmaq Reserve at Beaumont (former Fort Folly reserve) now belongs to the Roman Catholic archbishop of Moncton. It remains a sacred site for the Mi’kmaq of the new Fort Folly reserve located near Dorchester. They often return to it on July 26 to celebrate the feast of Saint Anne, their patron saint.
Source : Village of Memramcook – site file – The Former Mi'kmaq Reserve at Beaumont
English The character-defining elements that describe the Former Mi'kmaq Reserve at Beaumont include:
- its location ending at the eastern shore of the Petitcodiac River;
- the remaining tombstones in the old cemetery;
- new section of the cemetery containing tombstones installed in 1992 to commemorate the Mi'kmaq buried at that site.
The character-defining elements relating to the architecture of Saint Anne’s Chapel include:
- 1-storey rectangular massing;
- clapboard siding;
- central bell tower;
- regular fenestration of Roman arch windows with Gothic tracery.
Local Governments (NB)
Local Historic Places Program
Municipal Register of Local Historic Places
1837/01/01 to 1837/01/01
1840/01/01 to 1840/01/01
Theme - Category and Type
- Peopling the Land
- Canada's Earliest Inhabitants
Function - Category and Type
- Religion, Ritual and Funeral
- Religious Facility or Place of Worship
Architect / Designer
New Brunswick Provincial Legislature
Location of Supporting Documentation
Village of Memramcook Municipal Building
Cross-Reference to Collection