QAHN Heritage Talks Online (No. 3):
As a result of the economic hardship of the Great Depression, there was a back-to-the-land movement in Canada that advocated for the settlement of impoverished people onto tracts of land with the view that they would be able to become self-sufficient, much like the settlers of the 19th century. Within this context, the Eastern Townships Protestant Colonization Association was established in 1935, in conjunction with the government and the Anglican Church. The Association’s primary area of operation was to place needy families on previously unsettled lots in Newport Township. Initially referred to as Newport Colony, it became Lawrence Colony in 1937. By 1940, 45 families had been settled in the Colony but after a honeymoon period of sorts in the 1940s, the administration of support efforts, land titles, and taxes was fraught with confusion, inefficiency, and disappointment.
Jody Robinson has always been interested in the history of the Eastern Townships. She has a Master’s in History from the Université de Sherbrooke. In 2006, she was hired as the archivist for the Eastern Townships Resource Centre, an organization committed to the preservation of the heritage of the Eastern Townships. For over a decade, Jody has worked with a number of heritage organizations in the Eastern Townships on a variety of projects.