Before the arrival of the explorers and the european fishermen there were the presence of Inuits and Indians but they were only of a short passage on the islands. The first official explorers of North America were the English in 1497 and the Portuguese in 1500-1501. The portuguese navigator Joao Alvares Fagundes visited our area before 1521. The first europeans that came to fish in the area at the beginning of the 16th century were the French, the Basques and the Portuguese. Jacques Cartier the french explorer was in the region of the gulf of St lawrence in 1534\1535 and 1536. During the 17th century the British and the French share the islands . Permanent inhabitants settled in Saint-Pierre et Miquelon at the end of the 17th century. During the years , the islands pass successively under the english and french domination to become definitively french in 1816.
The French territorial community of Saint-Pierre et Miquelon is situated in North America approximately 25kms off of the south coast of Newfoundland,Canada. The archipelago is composed of three principle islands.
- Saint-Pierre the main island with a surface of 26 square kms.
- Miquelon and Langlade are connected by a sand isthmus of 12kms.
The total population of Saint-Pierre et Miquelon is estimated at 6,125 with the censuses of 2006. (5,509 inhabitants for Saint-Pierre and 616 population for Miquelon). The origins of the population are Basque, Brittany, Normandy and Acadian.
The moderate climate of our islands can vary over the four seasons. The archipelago is situated 47°N and 56°W, consisting of small islands emerging from the Atlantic Ocean near the Gulf of St.Lawrence south of Newfoundland. Its position is in an area that is swept by the disturbances that move quickly from east to west where outbreaks of artic air meet with warmfronts of the gulf stream. The average annual temperatures(5.3° C ) is characterized by a high annual range of 19°C between the warmest month(15.7°C in august) and the coldest month (-3.6°C in february).
Our language is french though many people speak english as some of our ancestors are of english decent.
The Economy of the archipelago is based on diverse industry sectors as fishing and processing , public works, agriculture and tourism. The economic development of the archipelago is given by the Territorial Collectivity to the Development Corporation (SODEPAR) for the promotion of the islands of Saint -Pierre et Miquelon.
www.iedom.fr / Saint Pierre and Miquelon
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE