Queens

Queens, NS, incorporated as a regional municipality in 1996, population 10 917 (2011c), 11 177 (2006c). The Region of Queens Municipality is located approximately 150 km southwest of Halifax.

Queens, NS, incorporated as a regional municipality in 1996, population 10 917 (2011c), 11 177 (2006c). The Region of Queens Municipality is located approximately 150 km southwest of Halifax. The regional municipality was created in 1996 as an amalgamation of the town of LIVERPOOL and the former county of Queens (established 1762). The regional municipality of Queens includes a coastal area stretching roughly from Port Medway to Port l'Hebert and inland to KEJIMKUJIK NATIONAL PARK AND NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE. The seaside adjunct to Kejimkujik is located at the southwestern corner of Queens. The county, and subsequently the regional municipality, was named to honour Queen Charlotte, wife of King George III.

Archaeological sites, including important PETROGLYPHS at Kejimkujik, indicate that native people used this area of Nova Scotia extensively, particularly as a route between the Atlantic and the Bay of Fundy coasts. There is also evidence of early use of the area by fishermen, and in the 1760s a number of New England merchants established businesses in the Liverpool area. Liverpool quickly became one of the largest ports in British North America and, along with Port Medway and Milton, it boasted a large SHIPBUILDING industry.

From the American Revolution to the end of the War of 1812, it was the principal port of privateers who harried the enemy from New England to the Spanish Main. The advent of steam-powered vessels hurt Nova Scotia shipping and many ports, including Liverpool, went into decline in the late 19th century. In 1929 a newsprint manufacturing plant opened in Brooklyn, and Mersey Paper (now Bowater Mersey) quickly became one of the area's major employers. There are also several abandoned gold mines in Kejimkujik and north Queens. The Libby Mines at Brookfield, which operated from 1887 to 1906, were particularly productive.

Forestry remains an important part of the local economy, along with fishing, agriculture and tourism. The fishery in Queens is largely focused on lobster and scallops, while tourism benefits from Kejimkujik and its seaside adjunct, the area's beaches and a remarkable concentration of parks and protected areas. A cultural centre, Liverpool has a number of historic sites, museums and the Astor Theatre (1902). Architectural treasures include Fort Point Lighthouse Park, PERKINS HOUSE and the old town hall (1901-02) in Liverpool, and the Old Meeting House (1832) in Port Medway. The Port Mouton area also has a very long and colourful history. It acquired its name from the bay where, in 1604, French explorer Pierre Du Gua de MONTS lost a sheep overboard.

Queens has also been home to large numbers of authors, including Governor-General Award winner Thomas H. RADDALL, and has a vibrant arts community. Two internationally known country and western musicians, Hank SNOW and Carroll BAKER, have ties to communities in the municipality.