In 1840, the village was known by the name of Burbridge. The consolidation of this community, at the start of the 1900s, was thanks to the arrival of the railway, which for more than a century connected Hull (Gatineau) to Maniwaki. The name was changed to Messines around 1919. The Saint-Raphaël parish was legally constituted in 1906.
The first municipal council was elected in 1921 with Louis Lécuyer as its first mayor.
In the middle of the 20th century, Messines was very active in growing potatoes thanks to its sandy soil, ideal for extensive exploitation of this staple. For many years, an important agricultural co-operative was formed between the local and regional farmers of the day. The original main building of the co-op today houses a sawmill. During the second half of the century, the municipality’s economy gradually changed to tourism and cottagers, thanks to the presence of its magnificent lakes. Some of the more popular ones are: Lac Blue Sea, Big Cedar and Little Cedar. There are also many forested areas which are great for outdoor activities throughout the year. Today, the municipality is also known for its hunting and fishing territories, and for a wide variety of recreational activities available all year long.
More and more people choose to establish permanent residency here. This too helps contribute to the local economy.