Discover Mabou, Nova Scotia: A Blend of History and Natural Beauty

Mabou, Nova Scotia, is a charming unincorporated settlement nestled in the Municipality of the County of Inverness on the west coast of Cape Breton Island, Canada. With a population of 1,207 residents as of 2011, this quaint community is home to several notable sites, including The Red Shoe pub, Beinn Mhàbu, the An Drochaid Museum, and Glenora Distillers.

The Rich History of Mabou, Nova Scotia

The name 'Mabou' is believed to have originated from the Mi'kmaq name 'Malabo', shortened from 'Malabokek', which translates to "place where two rivers meet" - a reference to the Mabou and Southwest Mabou rivers. The name also carries the beautiful meanings of "Shining Waters" or "Sparkling Waters". In Canadian Gaelic, Mabou is known as 'An Drochaid', meaning "The Bridge".

In 1841, Mabou welcomed its first resident Roman Catholic priest, Maighstir Alasdair Mòr (Fr. Alexander MacDonald, 1801-1865). He was seen as "a veritable chieftain and patron of poets" and was closely related to many local Gaelic-speaking pioneers.

During the late 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, Mabou thrived on coal mining, with several collieries located in the surrounding area. The Inverness and Richmond Railway, opened in 1901, connected the mines in Mabou and Inverness to wharves in Mabou and Port Hastings. However, mining activity ceased following World War II, and the railway was abandoned in the late 1980s. Today, it serves as a trail for snowmobiles and ATVs.

The Geography of Mabou, Nova Scotia

Mabou is situated at the head of an inlet off the Gulf of St. Lawrence, known as "Mabou Harbour". The community is surrounded by the low mountains of the Creignish Hills, offering stunning natural beauty.

Today, Mabou is primarily a fishing port for a small fleet of lobster boats and hosts a high school serving central Inverness County. Its rich history and picturesque landscapes make Mabou, Nova Scotia, a must-visit destination for history buffs and nature lovers alike.