My colleagues Vanessa, Caroline and I went to visit an important historic building for the city of Edmundston: the Petit-Sault Blockhouse.
Arrived at our destination, we first saw the impressive exterior of the Blockhouse. It is located in height, built on a large rock and made of wood with a sheet metal roof. At the entrance, the guide nicely greeted us and suggested a guided tour of the Blockhouse. We started the visit outside, on the “gazebo”, where we could see the hatch where the soldiers originally entered because, in the old days, there was no entrance door.
Our guide then gave us a brief summary of the regional history as well as the Blockhouse’s to put us in context. She explained that the Blockhouse was built by the British army in 1841 following a border dispute with the Americans. Unfortunately, The Petit-Sault Blockhouse burned down to its foundation in 1855 and was therefore rebuilt in 2000.
Back inside, on the first floor, which was the basement at the time, we learned that the soldiers would store the powder magazine, as well as food inside a hatch in the floor that kept it fresh. On the second floor was the place where the soldiers lived. They slept in bunk beds and cooked on a wood-burning stove. Our guide told us that about 100 soldiers lived in the Blockhouse. We were able to see many historical objects such as uniform buttons, British coins and bits of plaster pipes. On the top floor, the third one, we were able to see one of the original carronades and our guide explained us how the soldiers would use it in case of an attack.
To end our visit, our guide let us walk in the Blockhouse to observe their exhibitions of objects. I very much enjoyed visiting the Petit-Sault Blockhouse, it is a very special building for our city and its visit is interesting for people of all ages! The Blockhouse is open every day from 11 am to 7 pm. Entry costs are very affordable, $ 4.00 for an adult and free for children from 12 and under!
Jasmine Dupont student in information communication at University of Moncton