A History of Stephenville, NL : The Making of a Town


A History of Stephenville, NL : The Making of a Town

Stephenville is located on the north shore of Bay St. George in Newfoundland. It was once called Indian Head and was also often referred to as the Acadian Village. The first Acadian settlers arrived there in 1847. They earned a living from fishing and farming as their Maritime ancestors had done for generations. Some were of French descent and others were of French-Indigenous descent. A History of Stephenville, NL: The Making of a Town offers glimpses into the lives of the early settlers and presents a genealogy of the founding families. The community faced the challenges of growth and change, along the way to becoming a town. Part of this story follows the development of a large American military air base on the eastern side of Stephenville that became known as Ernest Harmon Air Force Base. The base lasted from 1941 to 1966. It brought thousands of outsiders from diverse backgrounds into the area, and greatly changed the composition of the rapidly growing community. Today, the Town of Stephenville is a picturesque and vibrant town that functions as the hub or service area for the region. It has a rich sociocultural heritage and occupies an important place in the ongoing growth of the region.