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Acadians are the original French settlers of parts of the North Eastern region of North America comprising what is now the Canadian Provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.

After the defeat of the army of France by the English, the British Government, as was normal for the times, demanded that the Acadians take an oath of allegiance to England. Those who refused were forced to leave Acadia in an ethnic cleansing that has been referred to as the Great Expulsion[?] of 1755. Families were separated and cast away in boats, where one third perished. Many, however, managed to hide in the woods or return to their homes over the following decades.

The Acadians today inhabit the North and East shore of New Brunswick, the area around Moncton, the Magdaleine Islands, and smaller pockets in Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia. There are also people of Acadian ancestry in the American state of Maine and the province of Quebec.

The Acadians who were exiled in 1755 were forcibly settled along the East Coast of North America and in Louisiana, where their descendants, the Cajuns, are a dominant cultural influence in many a Louisiana Parish (County).

The Acadians virtually disappeared from history for a century after the Grand Dérangement (Great Disruption), as they call the Acadian Expulsion, but being hardy and determined, they survived and experienced a minor cultural and political revolution in the 1880's.

Today Acadians are a vibrant minority, particularly in New Brunswick and Maine.

Acadians speak a dialect of French called Acadian French.

The American folklore hero, Paul Bunyan, is believed by some to have been influenced and if not inspired by Acadian stories about lumberjacks.

Notable Acadians include Angele Arsenault[?], singer; Antonine Maillet[?], writer; and former New Brunswick premier, the Honourable Louis Robichaud[?], who was the first Acadian premier, and responsible for modernizing education and the Government of New Brunswick in the mid-Twentieth Century.



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