Context to the creation of Forillon National Park

Forillon National Park

Forillon National Park was created in a particular context. In 1970, Forillon National Park, the first national park of the Canadian network in Quebec, was created to ensure the preservation of a representative territory of the natural terrestrial region of the Notre-Dame and Megantic mountains, and of certain elements of the natural marine regions of the Laurentian Channel and the Bancs Madeleine.

That same year, at the request of Parks Canada, the land was expropriated by the Province of Quebec and transferred to the federal government to establish the national park.

Some 225 families had to leave their properties and nearly 1,200 landowners lost their woodlots and varying amounts of cultivated land. The Mi'gmaq lost free access to their territory. Parks Canada recognizes that many families were greatly affected by this expropriation, which caused great disruption to the family, economic and social lives of these residents and the community. The main sectors expropriated at the time were Cap-des-Rosiers, L'Anse-au-Griffon, Ship Head, Grande-Grave, Rivière-Morris and Penouille.

A duty to remember

Much progress has been made since the park was created. Decades ago, we would never have believed possible the spirit of collaboration that characterizes today the actions undertaken in Forillon.

By seeking reconciliation, over the years Forillon National Park has developed a constructive relationship with the Association of Persons Expropriated from Forillon and their Descendants. The group has been consulted at various strategic moments and several of their requests have been met so far.

For more than 10 years, Parks Canada has been working closely with the Association to tell and commemorate the expropriated people's story.

Key achievements include:

  • In 2022, Parks Canada announced an investment of almost $9.8 million to conserve and present the heritage legacy of the families of the Grande-Grave sector.
  • In 2020, the pass program was extended to fourth, fifth and sixth generations.
  • In 2018, Parks Canada and its partners began to take an inventory of the park's cemeteries. In the park, there are five cemeteries and more than 400 monuments and grave markers. The inventory was started in collaboration with the Association of Persons Expropriated from Forillon and their Descendants and with the various communities historically associated with these cemeteries.
  • In 2014, a commemorative panel project was initiated. This project pays tribute to the families and communities that were expropriated during the creation of Forillon National Park. In the same year, Parks Canada contributed to the DVD box set project containing testimonies of expropriated people initiated by the Association.
  • Commemorative panel - Cap-des-Rosiers




    Commemorative panel - L'Anse-au-Griffon




    Commemorative panel - Ship Head




    Commemorative panel - Grande-Grave




    Commemorative panel - Rivière-Morris




    Commemorative panel - Peninsula




    Ship Head
  • In 2010, the "Gaspesians from Land's End" exhibit commemorating the origin and diversity of the population of the Forillon Peninsula, as well as the expropriated families, opened at the Dolbel Roberts House and it was announced that passes would be issued for three generations of expropriated people.
  • In 2009, a meeting was organized for the Forillon National Park expropriated families.
  • Proceeding in this manner leads to concrete actions that promote reconciliation by sharing leadership with local communities, and the results are mutually beneficial and more satisfying for everyone.

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