Paspébiac, Quebec Canada

Discover Paspébiac, Quebec: A City of History and Culture

Paspébiac, Quebec is a city nestled on the Baie des Chaleurs in the Gaspésie region of eastern Quebec, Canada. Known for its rich history and unique culture, Paspébiac is a must-visit destination for history buffs and nature lovers alike.

Paspébiac, Quebec: A Brief Overview

Paspébiac is a city with a population of 3,033 as per the Canada 2021 Census. The city is renowned for the Banc de Pêche de Paspébiac, a large sandbar extending into the bay, which has been recognized as a National Historic Site of Canada. Paspébiac holds the distinction of being Quebec's first cod fishing port. The city also boasts Basque roots and a unique accent that sets it apart from the rest of the region. The name Paspébiac may have originated from the Mi'kmaq expression 'papgeg ipsigiag', which translates to "split flats" or "lagoon". Alternatively, it could be derived from 'Wospegiak', meaning "shining in the distance". The city's territory includes the communities of Duret, Paspébiac-Ouest, and Rivière-Paspébiac.

The Rich History of Paspébiac, Quebec

The history of Paspébiac dates back to 1707 when the area was granted as a seignory to Pierre Haimard. This marked the beginning of the colonization of Gaspésie's southern shores. The area saw periodic visits during the fishing season until 1755 when settlers arrived from Acadia, Normandy, the Pays Basque, and, after the British conquest of Quebec, Jersey.

In 1767, the Jersey merchants Charles Robin and Company established a permanent fishing operation and headquarters in Paspébiac. This, coupled with its natural harbour, made Paspébiac the region's main commercial centre. The Robin and Le Boutillier installations on the barachois resembled a small town, complete with a warehouse, a general store, a wharf, a carpenter shop, a sail loft, a blacksmith shop and forge, a cooper shop for making barrels, offices, a cook-house, a boarding house for the apprentices, and numerous other buildings.

The local parish was founded in 1796, and its post office opened in 1832. In 1855, the place was incorporated as the Township Municipality of Cox. In 1877, this township municipality ceased to exist when it was divided into the Municipalities of Paspébiac and New Carlisle. In 1999, it changed its status to ville (town).

Paspébiac, Quebec: Demographics

As per the 2021 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, Paspébiac had a population of 3,033 living in 1,409 of its 1,501 total private dwellings. This represented a change of -4.1% from its 2016 population of 3,164. With a land area of 94.98 km2 (36.67 sq mi), it had a population density of 31.9/km2 (82.7/sq mi) in 2021.

The mother tongue distribution in 2021 was as follows:

  • French only: 93.9%
  • English only: 5.1%
  • English and French: 0.8%
  • Other language: 0.2%

Paspébiac, Quebec is a city steeped in history and culture. Its rich past and unique demographic composition make it a fascinating destination for tourists and history enthusiasts.