The French Presence in Greenspond

“GRIN D’ESPAGNE”

Traditionally, the origins of the name Greenspond was thought to come from the two family names, Greens and Ponds, who lived on the island. However, Dr. Michael Wilkshire and Dr. Frances Wilkshire, professors in the Department of French at Memorial University of Newfoundland have found a document in the archives in France which suggests that the name, Greenspond, derives from the French words “Grin d’Espagne”. In an essay titled “Alliances and Conflicts on the French Shore: Captain Hamon’s Journal, Written in Greenspond in 1770”, Michael Wilkshire wrote that in 1770, Captain Jacques Hamon of Granville recorded an account of his experiences in Greenspond, Bonavista Bay or “Grin d’Espagne” as it is referred to in the document. The original document which is written in French is entitled: “Extrait des declarations des Capitaines de navires qui ont ete employes en 1768 a La pesche de La morue seche sur La cote de L’isle de Terreneuve contenant le detail de Laditte Cote et ce qui s’y est passe D’Dinteressant”. Colonies C11 F vol. 4, ff.36-43; f. 36.

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