Discover Oromocto, New Brunswick: A Town of Deep Water and Rich History
Oromocto is a charming Canadian town nestled in Sunbury County, New Brunswick. The town is beautifully situated on the west bank of the Saint John River, at the mouth of the Oromocto River, approximately 20 kilometres southeast of Fredericton. The name "Oromocto" is believed to have originated from the Maliseet word "welamukotuk," meaning "deep water." This town is the administrative headquarters of the Oromocto First Nation band government and the site of the Canadian Forces Base Gagetown, which significantly influences its economy and modern history.
The Historical Journey of Oromocto, New Brunswick
The town of Oromocto has a rich history that dates back to its days as an Acadian village. During the Expulsion of the Acadians, the village was burned in the St. John River Campaign (1758). The American Revolution saw the construction of Fort Hughes in the community following the rebellion at Maugerville, New Brunswick. A replica of Fort Hughes now stands proudly at Sir Douglas Hazen Park.
In 1783, Oromocto experienced a significant influx of settlers with the arrival of United Empire Loyalists. This influx led to the establishment of smaller communities such as Lincoln and Geary. Oromocto was a bustling shipbuilding town in the 19th century, producing about 22 ships thanks to an abundance of timber and sawmills. Although the shipbuilding industry eventually declined, the town continued to thrive due to its timber resources.
The early 1950s marked a significant transformation for Oromocto as it was chosen as the headquarters for a large military training area. The Gagetown Military Camp, which opened in 1955, was the largest military reservation in the Commonwealth of Nations at the time. This development led to Oromocto's transformation into a "model town," placing it at the forefront of such efforts in Canada. Today, the town's economy is dominated by CFB Gagetown.
Exploring Oromocto, New Brunswick: A Blend of Nature and Urban Life
Oromocto's location in the Saint John River valley provides lush vegetation and an attractive waterfront on both rivers. A small park and marina occupy an area on the Oromocto River waterfront near downtown, offering a serene spot for relaxation. The town's nightlife is centered around Griffon's Pub and Eatery, a popular local hangout.
Oromocto offers a variety of shopping options, including a shopping mall featuring Pizza Delight, Tim Hortons, Dollarama, Shoppers Drug Mart, Atlantic Superstore, and a barber shop. The town also boasts a small hospital, track and field facilities, and churches. The town is home to a distribution centre for Sobeys grocery stores, a funeral home, library, and recreation centre. Adjacent to the town on the eastern limits is the Oromocto First Nations reserve, a small Mi'kmaq/Maliseet community.
Oromocto, New Brunswick: A Town of Trails and Transitions
The Canadian National Railway abandoned its railway line, which ran through the town to CFB Gagetown, in March 1996. This railway right-of-way has been developed into a recreational trail and is part of the "Sentier NB Trail" network. The section of the Sentier NB Trail between Fredericton-Oromocto-Burton also hosts the Trans Canada Trail.
Demographics of Oromocto, New Brunswick
According to the 2021 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, Oromocto had a population of 9,045 living in 3,663 of its 3,897 total private dwellings. This represented a change of -1.9% from its 2016 population of 9,223. With a land area of 22.36 km2, it had a population density of 404.5/km2 in 2021.