The causes dearest to Father Arsenault’s heart were education for Acadians and promotion of the French language.... As a student at the Collège Saint-Joseph, Arsenault had associated with a few professors who were trying to make the history of the Acadians better known and who advocated the preservation of their oral and material heritage. One of these was Father Philéas-Frédéric Bourgeois. It was probably through his influence that Father Arsenault, with the help of Father Théodore Gallant, a musician, collected traditional songs from older people in the Acadian community, including versions from the French repertoire as well as local compositions. These 130 pieces constitute the earliest collection of Acadian folksongs. In 1924 Senator Pascal Poirier, to whom Arsenault had given his collection, turned it over to Marius Barbeau of the Victoria Memorial Museum in Ottawa.
Dictionary of Canadian Biography
CANADA Atlantic Provinces, Atlantic Provinces, CANADA
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