LA VOIX ACADIENNE (Prince Edward Island) – In order to introduce Acadia to as many people as possible, Jean-Marc Agator and Jean-Pierre Bernier have set up a fully bilingual website, composed of articles on the oldest Acadian communities.
Karine Fleury – The Acadian Voice
Jean-Marc Agator describes himself as “a former French engineer, passionate about the history of Canada and the French-speaking communities of North America in all their cultural diversity”.
For his part, Jean-Pierre Bernier is a retired executive from the financial sector who is equally passionate about the French-speaking world in America. He is a native of Quebec City, but is now based in Ontario.
“We are not historians, but passionate about the history of French-speaking North America. We are very concerned about the historical rigor of the facts presented in our articles which we want accessible to all, sometimes by illustrating them by more cultural or symbolic aspects ”, one can read on their Web site.
What interests them particularly are the Acadian communities of the 17e and from 18e century, “during the French regime then the English regime, before and after the mass deportation of the Acadians by the English in 1755 and 1756”.
Nine communities of the former Île Saint-Jean are presented with the help of texts, images and maps. We find in particular Port-la-Joye, Havre-Saint-Pierre, Rustico, Pointe-de-l’Est, Tracadie, Havre-aux-Sauvages, Malpèque, Mount Stewart and Pointe Brudenell (Trois-Rivières).
The website is built under three major tabs, starting with the “Map of communities” tab, which allows you to geolocate Acadian communities. By clicking on the different points on the map, you can access the different historical articles of the place. For example, if we click on Belle-Île-sur-Mer in France, it brings us to an article concerning the settlement of 78 Acadian refugee families there.
Under the “Geographic areas” tab, Acadian communities are classified by geographic areas: North America, France, New Brunswick, and so on. The site says tropical America is yet to come.
The last tab, “Historical capsules”, allows you to present other information without a specific associated location. Most recent article, Inhumane conditions aboard transport vessels, allows us to learn more about the considerable death rate of Acadians during the various deportations.
There is also a smaller tab, “Bibliographical References”, which allows you to discover, by location, many reference works and websites to consult.
“Although the“ Prince Edward Island ”zone is complete, we still have a few items to complete in the“ Nova Scotia ”and“ Louisiana ”zones. This will be done in the near future, with any necessary improvements to the current site, ”says Jean-Pierre Bernier.
It is possible to visit the website at https://acadie.cheminsdelafrancophonie.org/. For those interested, there is also a complementary website: French Great Louisiana, which is dedicated to the Francophone communities that existed in the 18e century, before the sale of West Louisiana to the United States. The website Paths of La Francophonie is also a creation of Jean-Marc Agator.
To read also: POLÉMIC AND PHILOSOPHICAL CHRONICLE: TIME FOR CHOICE