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Point au Gaul, Newfoundland

Privacy Level: Open (White)
Date: 1850 [unknown]
Location: Newfoundland and Labrador, Canadamap
Profile manager: Brad Foley private message [send private message]
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Located on the tip of the Burin Peninsula, just east of Lamaline, the fishing community of Point au Gaul is located at the base of a low sandy point locally known as Point au Gaul Point. Local tradition has it that the name ("Frenchman's Point") comes from the first settler, a Frenchman named Hillier. However, the name of the feature may date from a time when the area was frequented by French migratory fishermen for drying fish, while Howley suggests that it may have originally been Pointe Egal (Flat Point)[1].


Permanent settlement at Point au Gaul was likely predated by seasonal use by fishermen from Lamaline, drying their fish on the beaches of Point au Gaul Cove (which faces Lamaline) and the neck of the Point Early records regard Point au Gaul Cove as part of Lamaline, so it is difficult to determine when the Hilliers may have settled there permanently.

Early Families

In 1869, with a population of 85, several families of Hilliers, as well as the Cruise (Crew), Hepditch, Loguer (Lockyer), Madigan and Walsh families, were recorded there — the Walshes at Nantes Cove to the east. By 1884 there were 104 people, engaged in the fishery and small farming.

Later History

Traditionally, surplus vegetables were traded at St. Pierre, but most people made their living from the inshore cod fishery, supplemented by the lobster fishery by the late 1800s.

The community continued to grow through the early years of the twentieth century and by 1921 had a population of 239, a Church of England school/parish hall and a lodge of the Loyal Orange Association. The Roman Catholic population of Point au Gaul (the Walshes and several families of French descent — Martins, Millons and Roberes) attended mass at Allan's Island. Later a small Roman Catholic school was built in the community and, as with the Church of England, Roman Catholic services were held once a month — by a priest from Lamaline.



  1. Encyclopedia of Newfoundland and Labrador, 1994 volume 4 (Extract: letter P). Entry for Point au Gaul, p. Page 340. Poole, Cyril F. Cuff, Robert, 1959. Harry Cuff Publications Ltd. Memorial University of Newfoundland Website. Accessed 2018.

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