The Many Names of the Petitcodiac River

DATE NAME SOURCE
     
c1670 Petgotgoiag Micmac Indians - Pere Pacifique
1686 Petcoucoyer de Meulles Map (earliest French reference)
1702 Pecoudiack Rameau
1746 Patcoutieuk d'Anville's Map
1748 Petkoudiack French Documents
1755 Petcudiac Abijah Willard's Journal (Webster)
1755 Petitojack Scott's Report
1758 Petcoudiack Scott's Expedition Map
1958 Pittquidyack Grant of Hillsborough Township
1765 HILLSBOROUGH Henry Alline's Journal
1781 Petit Codiack Commissioners on Loyalist Claims
1784 Petty Coat Jack The Petitcodiac, Wright
c1810-36   Memorials, Deeds, Newspapers of this period

 

R.P. Pacificque de Valigny - Chronicles Des Plus Anciennes Eglises de l'Acadie, 1944.  This Capuchin Monk of Ste. Anne de Ristigouche (note spelling) became an authority on the Micmac Language, writing a Micmac Grammar in 1939.

All other references, unless so marked, are taken from The Monograph, No 2 - "Place - Nomenclature" (1896) 261-262, by W.F. Ganong, and are cited in the Pincombe Thesis, p. 6.  Ganong believed that the name Petitcodiac came from Petitcoudie (the little bend) as opposed to the big bend of the North River in back of the village of Petitcodiac, where indeed the river does "bend like a bow." But he could not understand how "coude" became "codiac," nor did the French use this form in any of their records. He was certain it represented the effort of the English to restore a French form to a word supposed to be of French origin.