Arichat 1935: Main street, center of the village.
This house, originally built by Constant P. Terrio, was subsequently owned by Alphonse J. Benoit, Wilfred Samson and currently by Wilfred’s daughter Yvonne and her husband Gilles Boudreau.
The foundation of the house consisted of a rock wall three feet thick, and in the large basement the bases of two chimneys could be found. One of the fireplaces was big and open for the baking of bread. The stairs from the first floor were in the middle if the cellar, and there were windows in the foundation. The floors of the first storey were of wood, the ceilings and walls, plaster. Beneath the wall plaster was to be found boards one and one half inches thick and covered in a kind of cement, a mixture of sand and horsehair. Also stones were placed on the walls and painted the desired colours.
The window and doorframes were of pine five to seven inches in width. The ground floor contained a kitchen, dining room, living room, and bedroom. The entrance was graced by a large porch, and a remarkable plaster stairway of 50 posts. The walls of the kitchen and living room were distinctive in that they were wallpapered. On the second floor, there were four bedrooms and a bathroom. The front bedrooms were adorned by impressive dormers.
Professor Jean Alphonse Benoit, native of D’Escousse, graduated from Halifax County Academy in 1893. He was awarded the Sir William Young Scholarship to Dalhousie University to study physics and mathematics. In 1895 he attended Normal College in Truro and soon qualified for an academic teacher’s license. In September, he was appointed principal of the Clare County Academy teaching mathematics, science, and physical geography for the next four years.
In 1899 Mr. Benoit resumed his studies at Dalhousie and graduated with honours in mathematics and physics in 1900. He joined the staff of the Normal College where he remained until 1926 when he was appointed Inspector of Schools for Richmond and South Inverness.
He retired to Arichat in 1941; at the age of 92 he was still sawing his own wood. There were five children: Emile, Edouard, Remi, Delvinia, and Clothilde. This venerable, old place was acquired By Wilfred Samson and his family in the early 1970s.
The home of Constant Terrio, who married Mary Margaret Jamieson of Canso in 1899, was next. They had four children, Percy born in 1900, Louise (1902-1959), who married Dr. Leo LeBlanc of Cheticamp, Clara (1905-1986), and Edith (1913-1999). This structure was a general merchandise store on the first floor while the family made their home on the upper level. To the rear on the shoreline was an imposing wharf, which was used for the shipping activity of Captain Terrio.
Constant died in 1926 at the age of 62 and Mary Margaret passed away in 1963, age 88. In the 1960s this house was sold by Edith to Moussa Hassin who sold it in turn to Joe Samson. He established a lunchcounter/pool hall, which burned in 1978.
Within a few yards of the Terrios was the home of Captain Dan Landry, which was being rented by George Demers, his wife Delvina (Benoit), and their son, Ronnie. The owner, Dan Landry, married Jane Boudreau in 1883 and she died at age 75 in 1928. There were six children: Coritta, 1890; Alvina and Emily, twins, 1886; Blanche 1896; Adam, 1893; and Naomi, 1884.
The house later belonged to Agathe LeBlanc, daughter of Godfrey. She was married to Clifford Boudreau and they had three children, Cliffy, Yvette, and Deedee. At one time, probably somewhere in the 1950s and 1960s era, Agathe ran a small store out of her house. The house survives still.