It is our pleasure to present Volume XLII (1-2), January-June 2014 of the Revue de la Société historique du Madawaska (RSHM) - the Madawaska Historical Society Review. Several reasons make this issue quite special. First, it is the result of a remarkable team work, entitled Acadia of the Lands and Forests: “Disputed Boundaries & Rediscovered Families.” This research describes how the boundaries of Madawaska were settled and how the process partitioned families; all of this is exhibited using maps and showcasing archival documents.
Four people are the main artisans of this research and of the production of this issue of the Revue: they are Adrien Bérubé, geographer, Benoît Bérubé, historian, Allen Doiron, French archivist at the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick and Christian Michaud, Director of the Musée historique du Madawaska - the Madawaska Historical Museum. Allen Doiron can be considered the initiator of this project and the one providing the largest number of the exhibited artefacts. The Bérubé brothers have had close ties with the Madawaska Historical Society; Adrien was treasurer in 1977 and 1978 and a member of the editors’ board from 1980 to 1993; Benoît was Vice President of the Society in 1975-1976, President of from 1976 to 1979 and a member of the editors’ board from 1979 to 1993. Their interest in the Madawaska Historical Society has always been remarkable. Their contribution to the exhibition and to this issue of the Revue is the production of the didactic panels as well as modules for the Web site. Benoît also set up a database of surnames of the first families settled in Madawaska, the most numerous being Acadian: the Cyrs, Martins, Thibodeaux, Violettes and Daigles.
Several people were hired to do some basic tasks: Zoé Lessard Couturier transcribed some manuscript archives; France Smyth translated texts; and Issa Coulibaly worked with digitized images of old maps, georeferencing them to a modern map.
Second, this issue of the Revue is important because it focuses on a ten-stop exhibition prepared for the 2014 World Acadian Congress, and thus becoming the exhibit’s official catalogue. This exhibition will be on display at the Madawaska Historical Museum from July 31th, 2014 to March 1st, 2015. It will later become a traveling exhibition to be presented first at the Musée du Bas-Saint-Laurent in Rivière-du-Loup during summer 2015.
Third, this issue is a collaborative project between many organizations: the Madawaska Historical Society; the Madawaska Historical Museum; the 2014 World Acadian Congress; the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick; the Acadian Archives of the University of Maine at Fort Kent; Canadian Heritage, for the traveling component of the exhibition; the Edmundston campus of Université de Moncton; the New Brunswick Department of Tourism, Heritage and Culture, Heritage Branch, through its Museum - Exhibits & Activities Grant; and the Geostsat Centre of Université Laval’s Library.
The Madawaska Historical Society would like to sincerely thank and pay tribute to all those who participated in one way or another to the production of this exhibition and of this issue of the Revue of the Madawaska Historical Society.
We are confident that our members will read this issue with interest and we invite them to visit the exhibition at the Madawaska Historical Museum from July 31th, 2014 to March 1st 2015.
Jacques G. Albert