History Of The Oromocto River Watershed

Oromocto is the Native word for ‘Deep Water’.The original inhabitants tracking back 4,000 years were Algonquin speaking Maliseet. The tidal portion of the Oromocto river averages about 4 meters in low water. The French settled parts of this area prior to 1758 after which they were part of the mass exile due to the expulsion of the Acadians. During and after the American Revolution (1775-1783) American colonists who remained loyal to Britain during the war fled to New Brunswick and settled in this area.

Riches of the forest provided cedar and birch bark for native canoes. Full scale harvesting of timber from the shores of the Oromocto and it’s tributaries began in earnest about 1800. The timber and lumber trade dominated the area for more than 50 years from 1825-1875. More than 50 large ships were built in Oromocto.

The forest industry still remains as an economic mainstay in the Oromocto River Watershed. Commercial fishing of gaspereau and eel are still being harvested and agriculture remains a minor part of the economy. Outfitters and private citizens still enjoy some of the best hunting, fishing and outdoor recreation found anywhere in New Brunswick.

Ancient highways flow through pristine rolling hills and fertile lowlands, unspoiled by dams, heavy industry or mining. This watershed is truly remarkable in variety and quality. It is up to us to keep it this way for the generations that will follow.