The Mi'gmaq and their ancestors - Forillon’s first inhabitants

Forillon National Park

The Mi'gmaq and their ancestors frequented the territory of Forillon long before the Europeans arrived.

Penouille peninsula

img-responsiveFirst inhabitants

The Mi'gmaq and their ancestors came to Penouille on a seasonal basis, seeking their livelihood and fashioning stone tools at this location. Archaeologists believe they began to occupy the terrace dominating the Penouille salt marsh (located below the current Visitor Centre parking lot) about 4,000 years ago. On the Penouille peninsula itself, there are traces of Indigenous peoples populations dating to approximately 2,600 years ago (Middle Woodland period).

Archaeological excavations conducted on Penouille have offered up an impressive quantity of flaking debris, testifying to the presence of lithic workshops. Numerous tools and several traces of fire pits also provide evidence of craft-making and various domestic activities on this site. The great quantity of potsherds found on Penouille make it the Gaspé’s most important site for representing the Woodland period (associated with pottery).

Anse-au-Griffon Valley

The Mi'gmaq and their ancestors also frequented Anse-au-Griffon Valley. This natural corridor was regularly used for portaging across the Forillon peninsula – i.e., from the Gulf of St. Lawrence to Gaspé Bay. Three of the four inventoried archaeological sites are perched upon natural platforms, offering an unobstructed view out over the valley and vicinity. 

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