June 18, 2009
FREDERICTON (CNB) - The following statement was issued today by Premier Shawn Graham, in recognition of New Brunswick's 225th anniversary.
This year we are celebrating a significant milestone in our history: the 225th anniversary of New Brunswick.
In the 1760s, Sunbury County was the name the British gave to what is now New Brunswick, and they considered it a part of the colonial province of Nova Scotia. But the influx of United Empire Loyalists, fleeing the American Revolutionary War, led King George III to establish New Brunswick as a separate province. On June 18, 1784, an order-in-council of the King and the Privy Council authorized the form and cost of the new government, and authorized the appointment of officials.
Although many Loyalists were of British descent, there were also many Germans, Swiss, and Dutch, as well as groups of Quakers, Mennonites, and blacks among the arrivals. In addition to these new settlers, we know that the Mi'qmaq, Maliseet and Passamaquoddy had already inhabited this land for thousands of years. And that the first permanent establishment of the French in North America took place on Île-Sainte-Croix in 1604.
Today we benefit from their efforts and those of others during the past 225 years, and all those who have made New Brunswick a place to be yourself, belong and be better.
Edward Winslow, who was a driving force behind the plan to create a separate colonial province north of the Bay of Fundy, wrote in a letter to his friend, Ward Chipman, in 1783, "Think what multitudes have and will come here, and then judge whether it must not from the nature of things immediately become a separate government, and if it does it shall be the most Gentlemanlike one on earth."
I encourage all New Brunswickers to take the time to celebrate New Brunswick's 225th anniversary through opportunities such as the official New Brunswick Day celebration - held this year in the Village of McAdam - and later, in August, at the Congrès Mondial Acadien.