Hantsport The area around Hantsport was known to the Mi’kmaq as Kakagwek meaning “place where meat is sliced and dried” and the town is still home to a small Mi’kmaq community known as the Glooscap First Nation or Pesikitk.
Although no Acadians are known to have lived on the lands within the boundary of Hantsport proper, the area was part of the Acadian parish of Paroisse de Sainte Famille (established in 1698). Etienne Rivet and his progeny farmed the nearby marshlands of the Halfway River (currently the boundary between the town and the community of Mount Denson, Nova Scotia) and his son, Etienne, operated a mill on the river near where the marshlands meet the uplands on the town’s southern boundary.
After the Expulsion of the Acadians, the Acadian region of Piziquid was formed into the Township of Falmouth. These lands were granted to New England Planters, and officers of the British army. Colonel Henry Denny Denson, a retired British officer, was granted an extensive tract of land (Mount Denson), which included the lands lying north of the Halfway River and south of the Horton Township boundary. In 1789, after Denson’s death, his consort and heir, Martha Whitfield, sold Lots Three & Four (the area of Hantsport) to an Edward Barker.
Edward Barker (born at Lowdham, Nottinghamshire, England, 1745) was a British soldier, having arrived in Halifax in 1769 as a member of the 59th Regiment of Foot. In the early 1770s he mustered out of the army and by 1774 was at Falmouth, having married Rebecca Chadwick (see note)  of Newport, Rhode Island. He appears to have either worked on Abel Mitchener lands or rented farm lands until 1788 when he purchased land in Falmouth. A year later Barker purchased the Hantsport lots and soon thereafter moved his family to Hantsport. Barker’s arrival marks the beginning of the settlement which was initially known as “Halfway River” being the point halfway between Grand-Pré and Windsor.
|McDade heritage Center The society was formed in 1977 to promote preservation of material relating to the history of the town and surrounding area including Hants Border, Mount Denson and Bishopville.
In addition to the series of regular meetings and lectures, the society hires student guides and researchers each summer to conduct tours of the McDade Heritage Centre and has been actively collecting artifacts and documents relating to the history of the area for their library and archives.
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