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The islands are off the southern coast of Newfoundland. I visited these islands in August 2004, and was impressed by the plain but colorful architecture of St. The town of 4,000 is packed closely around the main harbor; most houses date from the first part of the 20th century, after a series of fires destroyed the old 19th century town. First she denied that the butter was ”very salty,” then she insisted, somewhat beside the point, ”But the French love salt!St Pierre had a burst of prosperity in the 1920s, when it was the base for smuggling liquor to the east coast of the US. ” I can’t say I found our conversation enlightening, but I enjoyed it.There are even a few houses built from the discarded whiskey cases. Pierre has largely depended on subsidies from Metropolitan France, which pours million a year into the local economy. Other than eating and drinking richly and nostalgically, what is there to do in St.-Pierre?The islands themselves are fairly barren, with only low salt-blasted forests. There are shops selling French things, including the Comptoir Importation Alcools, a liquor store stocked with Bordeaux and Burgundies (12 bis, rue Albert Briand). Since about a third of its inhabitants are on temporary assignments from the Metropole, as the St. St.-Pierre looks bleak, partly from its treelessness, partly because of the polar winds and fog that come with the Labrador Current. If it exists in an indeterminate Atlantic space, it also seems slightly lost in time.As if to compensate for their bleak surroundings, the St-Pierrais are proud of their little town, and express themselves in colorful architecture. Better to engage in St.-Pierre’s best pastime, simply strolling or climbing its streets. The pockmarked Cathedral of St.-Pierre, built in 1905 in cement, a medium revolutionary at the time, has weathered badly.
The locals like to say that they are literally French soil, since the best growing dirt arrived as ship ballast. Pierre and Miquelon Affaire of 1941: A Study in Diplomacy in the North Atlantic Quadrangle. There are a few shops selling local crafts and foodstuffs, also not particularly enticing.In St.-Pierre, what took me by storm was that hallmark of the house-proud French, the lace curtain. Pierre: When Distillers and Rum Runners Made France’s Colony off Newfoundland a Principal Centre for the Liquor Trade. Although the tranquil village of Miquelon has less to recommend it, it makes a pleasant two-hour excursion, via a guided boat tour.Ranging from handmade heirlooms to mass-produced polyester, the curtains appear on the vast majority of St.-Pierre houses in an astounding variety of patterns. There’s a charmer of a church, Notre Dame des Ardilliers, with folk-art religious paintings and a ceiling that mimics the hull of a ship, as well as a minute museum with local curiosities and an exhibit of St.-Pierre and Miquelon stamps featuring island life. A Field Guide to the Vernacular Architecture of St-Pierre et Miquelon. The Hotel Robert, a pleasantly shabby clapboard inn where I stayed, reminded me of my first trip to France in 1969 — towels with almost no nap, a flowery bedspread that fought with curtains in another pattern, a dollhouse-size bar of soap and no shampoo. Pierrais call continental France, this is mysterious, but undeniable.
Middle Dorset Variability and Regional Cultural Traditions: A Case Study from Newfoundland and Saint-Pierre and Miquelon. Policemen wearing flat-topped kepis congregate around the Gendarmerie, a big, hip-roofed building near the square.