What to KNOW
The tiny village of Middle Bay has an intriguing history. Basque fishermen travelled across the Atlantic ocean to fish cod and to harpoon whales in the Strait of Belle Isle during the 16 th century. At Middle Bay, they built seasonal shelters onshore and sheds for rendering whale blubber into the oil that lit much of Europe. Red roof tiles unearthed near the fish plant in Middle Bay led archaeologists to discover a significant Basque whaling station here. Permanent settlement of this small fishing village began in the mid-19th century with the arrival of pioneers from Newfoundland and elsewhere in Quebec.