Fort Lawrence

Fort Lawrence,
Fort Lawrence Road, Fort Lawrence, N.S.
1750 – 1755
In the fall of 1750 British forces under the command of Major Charles Lawrence constructed a fort on this strategic site on the isthmus of Chignecto. The fort stood on the ridge to the east of the Missiguash River close to the site of the Acadian village of Beaubassin which had been abandoned and burned by the French who retreated to the west side of the river where they began the construction of Fort Beauséjour..After the capture of Fort Beauséjour in 1755 the British abandoned Fort Lawrence in favour of Fort Beauséjour which they renamed “Fort Cumberland.”

Fort Lawrence was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1923 and the historical marker was among the first placed by the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada.

In 1672, Jacques Bourgeois and other settlers from Port Royal founded the Acadian village of Beaubassin in this strategic area. In 1750, the French burned the village in the face of the advancing English under Major Charles Lawrence and withdrew across the river where they built Fort Beauséjour. The English built Fort Lawrence on this ridge. Hopes of maintaining the long-disputed border at the Missiguash and saving that part of Acadia for France were dashed when in 1755 Fort Beauséjour was captured. It became the English garrison and Fort Lawrence was abandoned.

C’est à cet endroit stratégique que Jacques Bourgeois et des colons de Port-Royal fondèrent, en 1672, le village de Beaubassin. Pour parer à l’avance des troupes du major Charles Lawrence, les Français le brûlèrent en 1750. Réfugiés de l’autre côté de la rivière, ils y contruisirent le Fort Beauséjour. Sur cette arête-ci, li Anglais érigèrent le Fort Lawrence. La prise du Fort Beauséjour, en 1755, anéantit tout espoir de maintenir à Missiguash la frontière depuis longtemps objet de litige et de garder française cette partie de l’Acadie. Les Anglais installèrent une garnison à Beauséjour et abandonnèrent le Fort Lawrence.

See Fort Lawrence National Historic Site of Canada,

On the establishment of Fort Lawrence, see Bird, Will R., A Century at Chignecto: The Key to Old Acadia (Toronto: Ryerson Press, 1928), pp. 70-81.

On Fort Lawrence, see in more detail, Trenholm, Gladys, et al., A History of Fort Lawrence: Times, Tides and Towns (Edmonton: Sherwood Printing Ltd., 1985).

On Major Charles Lawrence (1709-1760), see Graham, Dominick “LAWRENCE, CHARLES” Dictionary of Canadian Biography, Vol.III, pp. 361-366.


Tantramar Heritage Trust | Historic Sites