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History Historical Geography

Nova Scotia's Lost Highways

The Early Roads that Shaped the Province

by (author) Joan Dawson

Nimbus Publishing
Initial publish date
Sep 2009
Historical Geography
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2009
    List Price

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At the turn of the nineteenth century, road travel in Nova Scotia was still in its infancy. Many Nova Scotians still preferred water routes, and those "roads" that did exist were often little more than blazed trails not fit for wheeled vehicles. But it wasn't long before roads were established around the province to allow for a steady increase in traffic and sophistication of vehicles.

Author Joan Dawson has used nineteenth-century maps and surveys to not only trace the paths of these old roads, but to explore the residents and businesses that sprang up along them. She follows the roads out of Halifax to Windsor and Truro (the "Great Roads") as well as the oldest post roads along the Annapolis Valley, the South Shore, northern and eastern Nova Scotia, and even Cape Breton. These earliest highways, now mostly forgotten or buried in wilderness, reminds us of the hard-working crews and surveyors who defied geographical difficulties to make travelling easier for Nova Scotia's residents.

Featuring 40 maps and illustrations, Nova Scotia's Lost Highways is a fascinating history of early travel in the province.

About the author

Joan Dawson is a member of the Lunenburg County Historical Society, the Heritage Trust of Nova Scotia, the Nova Scotia Archaeology Society, and the Antiquarian Club of Halifax, and she is a fellow of the Royal Nova Scotia Historical Society. She has written many articles on maps and local history, co-authored Historic LaHave River Valley, and authored Nova Scotia's Historic Rivers, Nova Scotia's Lost Highways, The Mapmaker's Eye, and The Mapmakers' Legacy. Joan lives in Halifax.

Joan Dawson's profile page

Other titles by Joan Dawson