Cape Breton Island


Cape Breton Island

geographical name

Island, (pop., 2001: 109,330), eastern part of Nova Scotia, Canada. Separated from the mainland by the Strait of Canso, it is 110 mi (175 km) long and up to 75 mi (120 km) wide, with an area of 3,981 sq mi (10,311 sq km). It contains the Bras d'Or salt lakes. Originally called Île Royale as a French colony, it later took the name of its eastern cape, probably the first land visited by John Cabot on his 1497–98 voyage and probably named by Basque fishermen from Cap Breton, France. It was ceded to the British by the 1763 Treaty of Paris and joined to Nova Scotia. In 1784 it became a separate British crown colony, but it was rejoined to Nova Scotia in 1820. In 1955 the island was linked to the mainland by a causeway. Cape Breton Highlands National Park was established in 1936. Tourism is an important industry on the island.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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