Campobello Island

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Campobello Island

Île Campobello
Rural Community
Head Harbour Light Station, Passamaquoddy Bay
Head Harbour Light Station, Passamaquoddy Bay
Campobello Island is located in Canada
Campobello Island
Campobello Island
Location of Campobello Island in Canada
Campobello Island is located in New Brunswick
Campobello Island
Campobello Island
Campobello Island (New Brunswick)
Coordinates: 44°53′N 66°56′W / 44.883°N 66.933°W / 44.883; -66.933Coordinates: 44°53′N 66°56′W / 44.883°N 66.933°W / 44.883; -66.933
Country Canada
Province New Brunswick
CountyCharlotte County
 • Land39.67 km2 (15.32 sq mi)
Highest elevation
90 m (300 ft)
Lowest elevation
0 m (0 ft)
 • Total872
 • Density22.0/km2 (57/sq mi)
 • Pop 2011-2016
Decrease 5.7%
 • Pop 2011-2016 density22/km2 (60/sq mi)
 • Dwellings
Time zoneUTC-4 (AST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-3 (ADT)

Campobello Island (/ˌkæmpəˈbɛl/,[2][3] also US: /-pˈ-/)[4] is the largest and only inhabited island in Campobello, a civil parish in southwestern New Brunswick,[5] near the border with Maine.[6] The island's permanent population in 2016 was 872.[7] It is the site of the Roosevelt Campobello International Park and of Herring Cove Provincial Park.

It has been governed as an incorporated rural community since 2010 but still receives some local service district services from the province, being assessed for fire protection, policing, dog control, and general government.[8] Despite the name, the rural community also includes all other islands in the parish.

The island is part of Charlotte County, which was formed in 1784 when New Brunswick was partitioned from Nova Scotia.[9] Campobello Parish was part of West Isles Parish until 1803, when it was erected as a separate parish. Campobello was claimed by the United States until the boundary in Passamaquoddy Bay was settled by commission in 1817.[10]


Captain William Owen.

The island was originally settled by the Passamaquoddy Nation, who called it Ebaghuit.

The first Europeans were from the French expedition of Pierre Dugua de Mons and Samuel de Champlain, who founded the nearby Saint Croix Island settlement in 1604. France named the island Port aux Coquilles ("Seashell Harbour").

Following the War of the Spanish Succession, under terms of the Treaty of Utrecht (1713), the island became part of the British colony of Nova Scotia.

Campobello fisherman in 1973

In 1770, a grant of the island was made to Captain William Owen of the Royal Navy, who renamed it Campobello.

The population was increased by United Empire Loyalists after the American Revolutionary War. Smuggling was a major part of the island's prosperity around this time. During the War of 1812 the Royal Navy seized coastal lands of Maine as far south as the Penobscot River but returned them following the war, except for offshore islands. In 1817, the United States relinquished its claim to Campobello, Deer, and Grand Manan islands, in exchange for islands in Cobscook Bay.

In 1866, a band of more than 700 members of the Fenian Brotherhood arrived at the Maine shore opposite the island with the intention of seizing Campobello[11] but were dispersed by British warships from Halifax.[12]

Franklin D. Roosevelt on Campobello, 1933

British naval officer John James Robinson became owner of the island in 1857. In 1881 it was sold to a group of American businessmen, including James Roosevelt. In the 1880s the island was developed as a resort summer colony for wealthy Canadians and Americans, as was nearby St. Andrews, New Brunswick and Bar Harbor, Maine. A luxurious resort hotel and many grand estates were built.[13] From 1883, the Roosevelt family made Campobello Island their summer home.

By the mid-1800s, Campobello Island had a population in excess of 1,000, which grew to 1,230 by 1910.


The island is at the entrance to Passamaquoddy Bay, adjacent to the entrance to Cobscook Bay, and within the Bay of Fundy. The island is one of the Fundy Islands. The island has no road connection to the rest of Canada; it is connected by the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Bridge to nearby Lubec, Maine. Reaching mainland Canada by car without crossing an international border is possible only during the summer season and requires two separate ferry trips, first to nearby Deer Island, then to L'Etete.[14] The ferry to Deer Island stopped in 2017, leaving the island without a direct connection to the rest of Canada.[15]

The jurisdiction of the eponymous rural community and of the census division include Head Harbour Island.

Measuring 14 kilometres (8.7 mi) long and about five kilometres (3.1 mi) wide, it has an area of 39.6 square kilometres (15.3 sq mi). On the north is a high bluff headland, East Quoddy Point.[16] On the west are Charley Point and the Mulholland Point navigation light.[16]


The island has several good harbours,[17] and the majority of residents are employed in the fishing, aquaculture or tourism industries.

The two major tourist attractions on the island are Herring Cove Provincial Park and Roosevelt Campobello International Park. The latter was created in 1964 and was officially opened by U.S. President Lyndon Johnson and Canadian Prime Minister Lester Pearson in 1966.


The island's only highway, Route 774, is connected by the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Bridge to Lubec, Maine – the easternmost town in the continental United States. The only transportation link with the rest of Canada is a seasonal ferry service to Deer Island Point, New Brunswick, on Deer Island.[18]

Mail delivered to the community goes through the United States. The U.S. began searching packages to/from the island in 2019, prompting outcry from residents.[19][20]


The island has one school, Campobello Island Consolidated School, for all school grades, in the Anglophone South School District.

Census data[edit]


Canada census – Campobello Island community profile
2016 2011 2006
Population: 872 (-5.7% from 2011) 925 (-12.4% from 2006) 1,056 (-11.6% from 2001)
Land area: 39.67 km2 (15.32 sq mi) 39.67 km2 (15.32 sq mi) 39.59 km2 (15.29 sq mi)
Population density: 22.0/km2 (57/sq mi) 23.3/km2 (60/sq mi) 26.7/km2 (69/sq mi)
Median age: 48.4 (M: 48.2, F: 48.4) 46.0 (M: 46.1, F: 45.9) 43.4 (M: 43.3, F: 43.5)
Total private dwellings: 616 641 632
Median household income: $52,139 $38,159
References: 2016[21] 2011[22] 2006[23] earlier[24]
Historical Census Data
Campobello Parish, NB
1991 1,317—    
1996 1,305−0.9%
2001 1,195−8.4%
2006 1,056−11.6%
2011 925−12.4%
2016 872−5.7%


Canada Census Mother Tongue - Campobello Parish, New Brunswick[25]
Census Total
English & French
Year Responses Count Trend Pop % Count Trend Pop % Count Trend Pop % Count Trend Pop %
885 Decrease 10.2% 98.88% 5 Decrease 83.3% 0.56% 0 Steady 0.0% 0.00% 5 Decrease 75.0% 0.56%
985 Decrease 15.4% 95.17% 30 Increase n/a% 2.90% 0 Steady 0.0% 0.00% 20 Increase n/a% 1.93%
1,165 Decrease 9.0% 100.00% 0 Steady 0.0% 0.00% 0 Steady 0.0% 0.00% 0 Steady 0.0% 0.00%
1,280 n/a 100.00% 0 n/a 0.00% 0 n/a 0.00% 0 n/a 0.00%


Communities within the rural community.[26][27][28]

Bodies of water[edit]

Bodies of water at least partly within the rural community.[26][27][28] * indicates a freshwater body.

Other islands[edit]

Other named islands within the rural community.[26][27][28]

  • Duck Islands
  • Head Harbour Island
  • Little Island

Conservation areas[edit]

Conservation areas at least partly within the rural community.[26][27][28]

See also[edit]



  1. ^ a b "Census Profile, 2016 Census: Campobello Island, Rural community [Census subdivision]". Statistics Canada. Retrieved 26 August 2019.
  2. ^ "Campobello Island". Lexico UK Dictionary. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 28 July 2019.
  3. ^ "Campobello". Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Retrieved 28 July 2019.
  4. ^ "Campobello". Collins English Dictionary. HarperCollins. Retrieved 28 July 2019.
  5. ^ "New Brunswick Regulation 84-168 under the Municipalities Act (O.C. 84-582)". Government of New Brunswick. Retrieved 1 August 2020.
  6. ^ Community Profile: Campobello Parish, Charlotte County, New Brunswick; Statistics Canada.
  7. ^ "Census Profile, 2016 Census: Campobello Island". Statistics Canada. Retrieved 10 August 2019.
  8. ^ "2019 Local Government Statistics for New Brunswick" (PDF). Department of Environment and Local Government. p. 65. Retrieved 1 August 2020.
  9. ^ Slumkoski, Corey (2005). "The Partition of Nova Scotia". The Winslow Papers. Electronic text centre (UNB Libraries). Retrieved 5 May 2020.
  10. ^ Edwards, M.J. (Ed.) (July 2013). Grand Manan & the War of 1812 (PDF). Grand Manan Museum. p. 14. Retrieved 24 June 2020.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  11. ^ Jennifer Crump (26 July 2010). Canada Under Attack. Dundurn. p. 133. ISBN 9781459704879.
  12. ^ Buescher, John. "What Happened to the Fenians After 1866?", accessed 8 October 2011
  13. ^ Erika J. Waters (2010). Kittery to Bar Harbor: Touring Coastal Maine. Arcadia Publishing. p. 119. ISBN 9780738572819.
  14. ^ Paul Karr (18 March 2005). Frommer'sMaine Coast. John Wiley & Sons. p. 248. ISBN 9780764595974.
  15. ^ O'Connor, Joe (23 January 2018). "The island Canada forgot: On Campobello, citizens are left exiles in their own land". Financial Post. Retrieved 24 January 2019.
  16. ^ a b U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey (1879). Atlantic Local Coast Pilot: Sub-division 1: Passamaquoddy Bay to Schoodic. U.S. Government Printing Office. p. 15.
  17. ^ Richardson Clover (1891). Sailing Directions for Nova Scotia, Bay of Fundy, and South Shore of Gulf of St. Lawrence. U.S. Government Printing Office. p. 29.
  18. ^ David Goss (2002). St. George and Its Neighbours. Arcadia Publishing. p. 91. ISBN 9780738511498.
  19. ^ "Canadian islanders angry over US mail searches". BBC. Retrieved 1 December 2019.
  20. ^ "On quiet Campobello Island, Canadians angered by US inspection of their mail". Boston Globe. Retrieved 20 January 2020.
  21. ^ "2016 Community Profiles". 2016 Canadian Census. Statistics Canada. 21 February 2017. Retrieved 26 August 2019.
  22. ^ "2011 Community Profiles". 2011 Canadian Census. Statistics Canada. 5 July 2013. Retrieved 15 March 2014.
  23. ^ "2006 Community Profiles". 2006 Canadian Census. Statistics Canada. 30 March 2011. Retrieved 15 March 2014.
  24. ^ "2001 Community Profiles". 2001 Canadian Census. Statistics Canada. 17 February 2012.
  25. ^ a b Statistics Canada: 1996, 2001, 2006, 2011 census
  26. ^ a b c d "untitled spreadsheet of New Brunswick place names". Geographical names in Canada. Natural Resources Canada. Retrieved 20 July 2020.
  27. ^ a b c d "No. 166". Provincial Archives of New Brunswick. Department of Natural Resources and Energy Development. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  28. ^ a b c d Official place names of New Brunswick checked against the cadastral map of the area.

External links[edit]