Pictured is the American House Hotel.

Arichat, 1935: We are in the centre of the village on what was known as the Low Road.

A building, known simply as the Sample House, served as a warehouse and showroom used by agents and salesmen to display their products for the town’s retailers.

Speculation indicates that it may have once belonged to the LeNoir complex for it is just above where their forge, wharf, and boat building facilities stood. In addition, it was owned by Charlie Malzard, a grandson of the LeNoirs.

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In the 1960’s this site hosted Chez Emile’s Drive-In, a popular take-out restaurant which fell victim to fire in 1991.

As just mentioned, the LeNoir Forge stood at the shore south of the Sample House. This building was constructed of stone hauled to the site from Port Hood in the late 1790s when brothers Simon and Thomas LeNoir arrived from Jersey in the Channel Islands and set up shop as master blacksmiths, shipwrights, and boat builders.

Part of the complex was a long wharf that extended out from the forge into deep water to service the sailing schooners of the 19th century. In later years, the forge passed into the hands of Charlie Malzard who had married into the LeNoir family. The old forge reinvented itself as warehouse, and icehouse among other things.

By the middle of the 20th century, it had fallen into disrepair but was rescued by a centennial grant in 1967. It has since become the cornerstone of the LeNoir Landing waterfront development.

Across the road from the Sample House stood the American House Hotel, a majestic structure with its long windows and balcony on the second story. It was operated by Tommy Babin and his wife Delta Robinson of River Bourgeois who were married in 1935. There were three children: Joan, 1943; William, 1944; and Ann, 1952. The hotel was purchased by Warren Jones, his wife Blanche and their son Brian. He added a restaurant on the west side and renamed it the Arichat Hotel. It was lost to fire in 1963.

So close to the American House that it burned at the same time was the Gagnon home. Alfred Gagnon (who died in 1931 at 73) married Martha Forest (1860-1939) and they had four children: Juliette, 1886; William 1890; Costhilda, 1888; and Alfred, 1885-1975. Later Bart LeBlanc and his family lived there until the fire of 1963.

Thomas Lavache, who died in 1918 at age 73, was next in line. He and Marie Fougere were married in 1885. She was 86 when she died in 1946.

Charles DeCoste Sr. and family moved in to look after the widow and inherited the house. His son, Charles Jr., stayed on there with his wife Elizabeth Boucher where they raised their family of four: Levi, Corona, Helena, and Peter, who inherited it from his father. Peter was married to Francie Power and they had two children, Neil and Jessica. Peter died in 1990.

The house has successively been owned by Dan Richard and Mark Pincivero.