This is the story of a real family.
After years of unrest and threats of deportation by the English, in 1750 a number of Acadian families flee from their prosperous wheat farms in Acadie (renamed Nova Scotia by the English), to live in French-controlled Île Saint-Jean (Prince Edward Island). For nine-year-old Pelagie Benoist, this is the beginning of almost thirty-five years of displacement and searching for a place to call home.
After five difficult years in Île Saint-Jean, Pelagie’s family moves to the Fortress of Louisbourg on Ile Royale. They live a very different life in this fortified town, which has a busy port and a thriving fishing industry. Their peaceful existence ends when war is officially declared between France and England in the spring of 1756. The civilians inside the fortress can only wait, knowing the English will attack.
Louisbourg is captured by the English in 1758, and all Acadians are deported to France. After twenty-six years of wandering, hardship, and suffering, including the loss of many loved ones, Pelagie finally has a chance to move to Louisiana. Will this be the home she’s been searching for? Or will it be one more disappointment?
“A very moving and compelling piece.”
—Anne Marie Lane Jonah, historian at the Fortress of Louisbourg, Louisbourg, Nova Scotia, Canada.
“I really enjoyed reading the manuscript and I congratulate you for this wonderful contribution to our common history and heritage.”
—Maurice Basque, scientific advisor, Institut d’Études Acadiennes, Université de Moncton, Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada.