Heart of Cape Breton
in the centre of Cape Breton Island, Bras
d'Or Lake almost splits
the land in two. At 1,099 square km and
95 km long, Bras d'Or is the largest lake
in Nova Scotia. A saltwater inland-sea, it
has two canals that introduce both salt water
and a variety of marine life to the lake.
activities on the lake include fishing, boating,
swimming and camping.
were the earliest inhabitants of the area.
Providing the only access to the island's
interior, the lake quickly became a transportation
route for settlers. In the 1630s a trading
post was built at St. Peter's. Late in the
18th century, Loyalists settled on the lake's
shores, soon to be followed by the Scottish
immigrants that would shape the course of
cultural development on the lake. Baddeck,
one of the largest towns on the lake, was
Alexander Graham Bell and his wife came to
Bras d'Or Lake in 1885, after the success
of the telephone had freed him to do other
experiments. They lived near Baddeck, creating
work for locals in both traditional occupations
such as farming and those related to his experiments.
One of his most famous achievements was helping
to design the Silver
Dart, the first airplane to fly in Canada
and the British Empire.