The Acadians arrived in the British colonies at the worst possible time. From " Star-Democrat Weekend Magazine, February 15, 1980; REFUGEES, ESPECIALLY FRENCH CATHOLICS WITHOUT FUNDS FOUND CHILLY RECEPTION HERE; (First of two Articles);by Dickson J. Preston":
"England and France were in a state of undeclared war, and things were going badly for the English colonists in America. In July 1755 had come word of General Braddock's terrible defeat at Fort Duquesne, during which only young Col. George Washington of Virginia had shown military skill. All along the frontiers, the French and Indians were on the attack, murdering settlers, burning forts and houses, capturing livestock and carrying off scalps as trophies of war."
The Acadian exiles were unloaded in Maryland "just when the waves of Francophobia and anti‑Catholicism had crested. (Brasseaux ‑ FOUNDING OF A NEW ACADIA ‑ p. 37) This hostile attitude was strengthened by the articles that had been appearing in the Maryland Gazette throughout the summer and early fall of 1755 describing, what was obviously false rumors and accounts of murder and laying the country to waste being committed by the French and their Indian allies. Basil Sollers in his "The Acadians (French Neutrals) Transported to Maryland" that appeared in the Maryland Historical Magazine Vol III ‑ March, 1908 ‑ No. 1", reports on the propaganda and inflamatory articles that appeared in the Maryland Gazette in the summer and early fall of 1755. (Basil Sollers ‑ THE ACADIANS (FRENCH NEUTRALS) TRANSPORTED TO MARYLAND , pp 1‑5)
Many of the ships held the Acadians on board at port for between three and six months as they began to die from starvation, the horrific spread of fatal disease, and wretched sanitation conditions. The crowding of the ships made conditions aboard the vessels dangerous to health.
November 20, 1755
Less than a year after Le Grand Dérangement, legislation was passed in Maryland, which authorized the imprisonment of homeless Acadians and the “binding out” of their children to other families.
The Acadians were quartered virtually as prisoners, not to leave town without a written permit of the selectmen under penalty of five days in prison or ten lashes. they depended on the cold hand of the public for food clothes and lodging and were given some provisions. (27 May 1756, Proceedings and Acts of the General Assembly of Maryland ‑[ Baltimore, 1930] 24: 542 ff. ‑ also Sollers "The Acadians (French Neutrals) Transported to Maryland" ‑ Maryland Historical Magazine 3 (1907): 18. Governors of the colonies received the Acadians with varying degrees of hostility. Governor Dulany of Maryland wrote: "They have eaten us up"
Click here for the Official Records of Robert Dinwiddie, LIEUTENANT-GOVERNOR OF THE COLONY OF VIRGINIA, 1751-1758 and to obtain an idea of the utter malice and dissent that the British held for the Acadians.