Saint Pierre (săN pyĕr) [key], town (2006 pop. 5,509), capital of the French territorial collectivity of St. Pierre and Miquelon, on the E coast of St. Pierre island. St. Pierre is the administrative and commmercial center of the islands. Fishing, fish processing, fish meal production, and fish exporting are the town's main industries. Tourism is also important. The town was settled in the 17th cent., primarily by Basque, Norman, and Breton fisherman, and a curing and salting plant for cod was soon established. Razed by the British (1778) and French (1794), it was rebuilt in the 19th cent. and grew as a fishing and fish-processing center. During America's prohibition period (1920–33), the town was a prosperous bootlegging hub. Notable sights include the cathedral (1907), lighthouse, and state museum.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.