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St. Margaret's Bay


Samuel de Champlain Map of 1607

Samuel de Champlain's Chart of the Gulf of Maine and Nova Scotia circa 1607


St. Margaret's Bay - Halifax Harbour from Space

St. Margaret's Bay and Halifax Harbour from Space


Halifax Harbour

Halifax Harbour looking SSE towards Bermuda - 750nm



Charlotte Bay - St. Margaret's Bay in 18th Century

Charlotte Bay in late 18th Century - now SMB



Bluenose II in French Village Harbour

Bluenose II in French Village Harbour in 2004


St. Margaret's Bay

Samuel de Champlain, the renowned cartographer and explorer, charted the waters around St. Margaret's Bay during his 1603-1607 voyage, probably in late August 1606. It is believed that the bay was named for his mother Marguerite, as it appears as "Ste. Marguerite Baie" on his map of 1612.

His most famous map of 1607 shows parts of Maine, Gulf of Maine, New Brunswick, Bay of Fundy, and Southern part of Nova Scotia; however, it is believed that his charts of the Nova Scotia shoreline from La Have to Canso are lost.


St. Margaret's Bay, NS

The view from space (straight up is approximately NE) shows part of Mahone Bay at the bottom separated from SMB by the Aspotogan Peninsula, and Halifax Harbour, which is about 20mi (32km) further East across the Chebucto Peninsula.


Did you know that Hamilton, Bermuda is West of Halifax by about 1° of Longitude? And, that Halifax is almost due East of Boston? The prevailing SSW winds made Halifax a down-wind run for ships sailing to Europe via Halifax - hence the phrase, sailing 'Down East'.


The Atlantic Neptune was the first great marine atlas. Published for the Royal Navy by Joseph F. W. Des Barres in 1774, it contained over 250 charts including King's Bay and Charlotte Bay, which are now known as Mahone Bay and St. Margaret’s Bay.


French Village Harbour

French Village Harbour

The history of SMB fills many volumes and the area is believed to have been occupied for at least 400 years, initially by the Mi'kmaq for over 200-years before the Europeans.