St. Pauls, NL
Town of St. Paul’s
22 Viking Trail
P.O. Box 9
St. Paul's
A0K 4Y0
Population, 2016  238
Population, 2011  258
Population, 2006  309
Population percentage change, 2011 to 2016   -7.8
Total private dwellings  111
Private dwellings occupied by usual residents  96
Population density per square kilometre  44.5
Land area in square kilometres  5.35
Visible Minority (%) 0.0
Homeownership Rate 94.7
Median value of dwellings ($) 50,147
Median monthly shelter costs for rented dwellings ($)
Average total income of economic families in 2015 ($)
Participation rate 57.4
Employment rate 40.4
Housing Starts, 2017
St. Paul’s is located on the western coast of Newfoundland near the base of the Great Northern Peninsula [3]. The town is surrounded by Gros Morne National Park. Today St. Paul’s is a 157 km north of Corner Brook and 310 km south of St. Anthony. Many services are located in Cow Head including a K-12 school, however healthcare is provided in Norris Point 60 km South [3].
Archaeological evidence suggest that St. Paul’s was occupied 5,500 - 1,000 years ago [4]. The peoples that were thought to have inhabited the region include Maritime Archaic Indians, Groswater Paleoeskimos, Dorset Paleoeskimos, and recent Indians. The community was settled by europeans in the 19th century.The settlement in 1874 had a population of one and grew to 115 in 1935 [4]. St. Paul’s was incorporated in 1968 [4].
The lands surrounding the community are salt marshes which are important habitats for birds and fish [4]. The fishery has been and continues to be an important part of St. Paul’s economy. Early fishing focused on cod and shifted to lobster which is the dominant species harvested in the area today [4]. Other species have included herring, salmon, halibut, capelin, and seal [4]. Today in addition to lobster, groundfish and crab are harvested [3]. The first lobster factory opened in St. Paul’s in 1887, with a series of factories opening on the west coast until 1921 at which point 12 factories were in operation. A shift then saw the live shipment of lobster to US markets, still in practice today [4].
The waters around St. Paul’s have been extensively fished and conflict between local fisherman and outsiders eventually saw the formation of a Fisherman’s herring protection committee in the 1970’s [4]. This committee saw changes to regulations including the banishment of seines. The regulation was too slow and saw the end of the herring catch in St. Paul’s. Salmon fishing continued until 1992 until a moratorium was put in place [4].
The moose was introduce in 1878 with an estimated population of 7,800 today, moose hunting has become a common practice in St. Paul’s [4]. The forest industry is second only to lobster in St. Paul’s with a sawmill in proximity. The decline in pulpwood demand has negatively impacted the area [4].
Tourism is a large economic drive that began in the late 19th century with the development of the railway [4]. The exploration of the Great Northern Peninsula saw the construction of a bridge in 1911 however it was destroyed by ice flows in a matter of weeks [3]. It was not until 1962 that a second bridge was constructed. Gros morne National Park was established in 1973 [4].
The municipal plan for St. Pual’s is dated to 1991 [5a]. The plan indicates that the population in 1986 is estimated to be 515, with approximately 3 housing starts per year [5a pg. 6]. The plan projects that population is unlikely to reach 600 residents by 1996 an will likely see 25-35 new residents in 10 years [5a]. Economic activity in the plan notes ensuring lands for fishery activity and anticipation of tourist traffic [5a pg.9].
Contact Information [6]
Mayor Melvin Reid
Clerk: Monica Pittman
Phone: (709) 243-2279
Statistics Canada Archives:
Provincial Repository of Municipal Plans:
St. PaulsMunicipal Plan:
Municipal Contact:
Newfoundland and Labrador Municipal and Inuit Community Government Directory

Dr. Leith Deacon PhD