Website_ImageThe Town's prosperity and even its beginnings are entwined with the development of the scenic East River. The East River is a tidal estuary for salt and fresh water, where Atlantic salmon cruise and jump to spawn, and there is no doubt it was the charm of the river that drew the Scots to New Glasgow.

The community that was to become New Glasgow was settled in 1784 when Deacon Thomas Fraser built on land that is now the west side of the town. By 1809 the Town had been named after Old Glasgow in Scotland and was officially incorporated in 1875.
Enterprise and the entrepreneurial spirit were evident even in 1809 as James William Carmichael and George Amos established a trading post within the town that year. New Glasgow is still true to its roots in its role as the leading commercial and service centre for northern Nova Scotia.

The recent revitalization of the Riverfront is reminiscent of the glory days of the 19th century when New Glasgow had a thriving shipbuilding industry. New Glasgow is the birthplace of George MacKenzie, known as the father of Nova Scotia shipbuilding. Captain MacKenzie established a shipbuilding business in New Glasgow in 1840 and during his lifetime built or owned approximately 40 vessels. When he withdrew from the business, it was taken over by his nephew James William Carmichael. Today the Carmichael-Stewart House Museum located on Temperance Street is a stately Victorian structure that has been transformed into a community museum, which pays now tribute to the shipbuilding heritage of the region. During the heyday of shipbuilding, hundreds of ships were built at numerous ship yards along New Glasgow’s East River.

Although founded by Scottish settlers, and named after Glasgow, Scotland, New Glasgow has always had a multi -cultural mosaic. A strong African Nova Scotia heritage as well as British, Irish, Dutch, French, Greek, First Nations and many other cultures enriches the community.

Six years before the arrival of the Ship Hector to New Scotland in 1773 and 100 years before the Birth of Canada, the first Afro-Nova Scotians came to Pictou County. The American War of Independence resulted in the largest single influx of Blacks to the province and most of these Black Loyalists were free and formed the foundation of the modern day presence in Nova Scotia. During the industrial age of the 19th Century, Black citizens from Tracadie came to Pictou County and most settled in New Glasgow.

There is also a strong tie to Trinidad and Tobago that began in the mid 1800s when a Presbyterian minister from New Glasgow travelled to Trinidad to establish the first school and is recognized as the founder of Trinidad’s educational system.

 

 

Featured Links

Parl Local History Room

Nova Story Digital Collections http://novastory.ca/

Genealogy Reference Services http://www.parl.ns.ca/resources/historians.php

A NEW Ancestry online database http://www.parl.ns.ca/resources/ancestry.php (Please note that this online database can only be accessed from public computer terminals in each of PARL's libraries). You can however, access the online tutorial on how to use Ancestry.ca from anywhere.

Carmichael Stewart House Museum

Carmichael Stewart House Heritage Museum
https://www.facebook.com/Carmichael-Stewart-House-Museum-224779827547853/

Pictou County Roots Society

Pictou County Roots Society
http://www.pictoucountyroots.ca/

Nova Scotia Archives & Records Management

Nova Scotia Archives & Records Management
http://www.gov.ns.ca/nsarm/

Nova Scotia Museum

Nova Scotia Museum
http://museum.gov.ns.ca/

Nova Scotia Museum of Industry

Nova Scotia Museum of Industry
http://museumofindustry.novascotia.ca/

Suggested reading:

"About New Glasgow" by James Cameron
"More About New Glasgow" by James Cameron
"The Churches of New Glasgow, Nova Scotia" by James Cameron
"Industrial History of the New Glasgow District" by James Cameron
"Ships and Seamen of New Glasgow, Nova Scotia" by James Cameron
"Life of James William Carmichael and Some Tales of the Sea" by John Sinclair

Contact your local Public Library