The Lost Port of Brest

Oral history says that Old Fort Bay Village, located on the North Shore of Quebec may have been the site of the mysterious Breton port of Brest. This name appears on the earliest maps of North America and indicates a rather important fishing facility, founded by Breton fishermen.

It the early 16th century, the Bretons made Brest the headquarters of their fishery in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Presumably, they named it after the city of Brest, in Brittany, France.

Jacques Cartier records state that the navigator called into Brest in 1534, where he secured a fresh supply of water and wood. He stayed there overnight; he planted a cross and participated in the first officially recorded mass in Canada.

The next morning, the French expedition left the port and reached Gaspesie after a few weeks.

Over the centuries, the location of Brest has been the subject of heated debates over everything from the significance and size of the port to its exact location on the Coast. Today, many historians are inclined to believe that Brest occupied the place of Old Fort Bay Village, but this version is still unconfirmed.

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