Virtual Exhibit Examines Life in Colonial Nova Scotia

Tourism, Culture and Heritage (To Jan. 7)

November 9, 2007 3:07 PM

People can now learn what life was like in colonial Nova Scotia through records from two of the province's oldest English-speaking families.

The Eassons and the Hoyts: Two Hundred Years of Family and Community Life in Nova Scotia is the latest virtual exhibit to be launched by Nova Scotia Archives and Records Management.

"This exhibit serves as an outstanding resource for exploring 18th- and 19th-century life," said provincial archivist Brian Speirs. "In particular, it highlights relations between French, English and Mi'kmaq communities in colonial Nova Scotia."

The Internet resource features a bilingual interface and contains more than 1,200 digital documents. Among the more unusual items are rare records from the 1750s detailing illegal trade between Annapolis Royal, New England, Halifax and French-régime Louisbourg during the Seven Years' War.

The Easson and Hoyt material also features records itemizing annual costs for shoes, schooling and other household expenses, plus grocery lists, dressmaking invoices, and records of house construction and equipment purchases.

The Easson family first settled in Nova Scotia in 1734, when John Easson was appointed master artificer to the British army garrison at Annapolis Royal.

The Hoyt family, related to the Eassons through marriage, came as Loyalists after the American Revolution. In 1860, Jesse Hoyt became superintendent of the American Telegraph Co. Ltd. His surviving records document the arrival of "modern" telecommunications in Nova Scotia.

The virtual-exhibit launch was held in the Annapolis Royal Town Hall on Friday, Nov. 9. It featured an introduction by Barry Moody, from Acadia University, and a tour of the Website.

The Easson-Hoyt collection is available on the Nova Scotia Archives website at www.gov.ns.ca/nsarm/virtual/easson .

Nova Scotia Archives and Records Management acquires, preserves and makes available the province's documentary heritage.


FOR BROADCAST USE:

People can now learn what life was like in colonial Nova Scotia

through records from two of the province's oldest English-

speaking families.

     The Easson-Hoyt virtual exhibit explores eighteenth- and

nineteenth-century life in Nova Scotia through two of its oldest

English-speaking families.

     The Easson family settled in Annapolis Royal in 1734 and the

Hoyt family came as Loyalists after the American Revolution.

     The exhibit, which contains more than 1,200 documents,

highlights relations between French, English and Mi'kmaq

communities.

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Media Contact: Lauren Oostveen
              Nova Scotia Archives and Records Management
              902-424-6073
              E-mail: oostvelj@gov.ns.ca