History    Historical Items/Documents Gallery Maps

Northumberland and the Borders, United Kingdom

The New Brunswick Land Company recruited two parties of farm laborers and tradesmen from the eastern Borders between England and Scotland, United Kingdon during the 1830s. The first group was recruited in February 1836 by The Company's New Brunswick commissioner, E.N. Kendall. Kendall and Company Director David Stuart held information sessions at Ford Castle, Northumberland "for the purpose of engaging Families to settle on the Companys Lands".

This first party of 110 settlers sailed in May 1836 from Berwick-Upon-Tweed aboard the 'fine new brig' 'D'Arcy of Sunderland', settling in and around Stanley north of Fredericton. Most of the families bore lowland Scots surnames and belonged to various denominations of Presbyterianism. They were said to have come from in and around the town of Wooler to the south of Berwick, but in fact only four families came from that parish and two others from elsewhere in Northumberland. A further two families were also English but their exact origin is unknown. Seven families were from Scotland, with most from just over the border into Berwickshire and Roxburghshire. Some of these families had families connections on the English side of the border though.

The second group of 137 Border settlers set sail from Berwick-Upon-Tweed in May 1837 aboard the "fine new brig" 'Cornelius of Sunderland'. More members of this group were from the Northumberland side of the border and more were from the town, or immediate vicinity, of Wooler itself. Two-thirds were laborers, one a teacher, and eight were tradesmen: 2 millers, 2 carpenters, as well as a mason, blacksmith, tailor and shopkeeper.

Unfortunately by Spring 1837 the New Brunswick Land Company's activies were at a stand still in New Brunswick because Commissioner Kendall had left the Company's employ and no replacement had yet arrived. Upon arrival in Fredericton the settlers "received the unfavourable news that a stop had been put to the Company's work" and learned of serious complaints raised by the previous party. They apealed to Governor Sir John Harvey that they be allowed to clear a tract of land outside the territory of the Comany "to be sold to them at as reasonable a rate as practicable, to be paid for by instalments within a given period". After a spirited debate the Legislature voted the sum of 200 pounds to defray the costs of locating them along a road under construction between Fredericton and St. Andrews, about 25 miles south of the city. This second group thus escaped the Company's control and founded Harvey Settlement, named for the Governor.