Second Level Assessment- Current Impacts

Fort Folly First Nation

Mi’kmaq never surrendered title to Mi’kma’ki (Mi’gmawe’l Tplu’taqnn 2023), however have limited contemporary presence in the Anagance River watershed (despite it being their traditional territory). There are relatively few Mi’kmaq, and government policies concentrated these downstream on the Fort Folly reserve at Beaumont (in Shepody Bay), at the mouth of the Petitcodiac. Economic decline of the building stone quarries at Fort Folly Point in the 1890s, profoundly affected the reserve.  Many families moved to Shediac or land the band held in Richibucto, while others went to Dorchester and the surrounding area. By 1913 only three or four families remained at Beaumont, the last of which left in 1955.  In 1958, Beaumont was no longer occupied, title was lost, which has subsequently been challenged in a land claim (Fort Folly First Nation 2021).

Mi’kmaq continued to be part of the community in and around Dorchester throughout the 1950s and 1960s after Beaumont ceased to be a reserve (Goodrich 2020), living as individual families with “status” but without a reserve. That changed in 1969 when the current Fort Folly First Nation Reserve was established near Dorchester at Palmer’s Pond on Rte. 106.  It was initially named Palmer’s Pond Reserve (Fort Folly First Nation 2021), but the decision was soon made to rename it the Fort Folly Indian Reserve.  The present band, which is mostly descended from those who had occupied Beaumont (Kristmason 2004), does not consider this to be a new foundation, but continuity, with a relocation from Beaumont (Goodrich 2020).  Fort Folly, which had been the name of the original reserve at Beaumont, was named geographically for the location on which it existed (Perley 1841, Ganong 1899).  Today the band has thirty-six members living on reserve, and a further ninety-six living off reserve.