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Abstract

The archaeological fieldwork on the Anse à La Cave site at Bon-Désir uncovered remains associated with the exploitation of marine mammals in the St. Lawrence estuary. Excavations revealed the presence of two series of ovens used for rendering marine mammal fat. These preliminary data contribute to our understanding of sites based on the seasonal exploitation of whales in North America by European fishermen. The environmental, historical, and archaeological data support the hypothesis of a Basque occupation in the St. Lawrence estuary, particularly on the Anse à La Cave site from perhaps as early as the end of the 16th century to the middle of the 18th century.

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