Tracadie-Sheila, NB, incorporated as a town in 1992, population 4933 (2011c), 4479 (2006c). The Town of Tracadie-Sheila is situated on the Gulf of ST LAWRENCE, 83 km southeast of BATHURST. Incorporated first as the town of Tracadie in 1966, it amalgamated with the village of Sheila in 1992. Known by the Micmac as Telakadik, meaning "camp ground," the area was used by them for temporary camping while fishing the Little and Big Tracadie rivers. There is evidence of native occupation here around 1000 years ago.
The location was first settled in 1784 by ACADIANS who had either avoided the deportation or who had since returned, followed shortly thereafter by English-speaking settlers. In 1849 the provincial government established a lazaretto (hospital for contagious disease, in this case leprosy) at Tracadie, the first such institution in Canada. The lazaretto is now a museum. During the 19th century, economic activity in the area centered primarily on the wood industry. Both the Big and Little Tracadie rivers were used to carry timber to Tracadie mill sites or to the shipyards of the Miramichi.
The present-day economy is based chiefly on tourism, farming and fishing. Tracadie-Sheila also serves as a commercial centre for the many neighbouring villages. The International Francophone Festival is held there each June. Val Comeau Provincial Park, 8 km south of the town, is popular for birdwatching and for its beach.