Port Hood, NS, Unincorporated Place. Port Hood, the county seat for Inverness County, is located on Northumberland Strait on Cape Breton Island, 45 km northeast of the Canso Causeway. It was named Kag-weam-kek (meaning "sandbar") by the Mi'kmaq and Juste-au-Corps (meaning "waistcoat) by the French. The French built vessels here for their Newfoundland trade and quarried stone for Louisbbourg and forts in the French West Indies. After the British gained control of Cape Breton in 1763, 2 British surveyors, Samuel Holland and Joseph Desbarres, each named the site. DesBarres' name, honouring Samuel Hood, a British naval commander, gained acceptance over Holland's Port Barrington, named after Britain's war secretary, Viscount Barrington.
Early French settlers reported coal deposits, but these have been mined with disappointing results. The area prospered 1850-71 with the fishery, but declined following the expiration of a treaty with the US. Federal government programs in the 1960s have helped the industry redevelop. Port Hood, in addition to its administrative role, is also the service centre for surrounding farming and fishing communities.