[Fr. san-lwee]
Saint-Louis, city (1988 pop. 160,689), NW Senegal, a port at the mouth of the Senegal River. The terminus of a railroad from Dakar, it is a fishing, trade, and export center for peanuts, hides, and skins. The oldest French colonial settlement in Africa, Saint-Louis was founded (1638) on an island in the river as a trade base. In 1659 a French fort was built there. Except for brief periods (1758-79; 1809-15) of British rule, it was the capital of all French possessions in W Africa and capital of French West Africa from its inception (1895) until 1902. Saint-Louis was subsequently (1902-58) capital of both Senegal and Mauritania. It has declined since independence but remains an important administrative, tourist, and trading center.
Saint-Louis-du-Ha! Ha! is a parish (a small town) in the region of Témiscouata, Bas-Saint-Laurent, near the south shore of the Saint Lawrence River in Québec, Canada. It is located southeast of Rivière-du-Loup along Route 185, about halfway to Edmundston in New Brunswick. Its population is 1,471. Its economy is mainly agricultural.

Saint-Louis-du-Ha! Ha!'s motto is Solidaire dans le labeur, French for Solidarity in work. Its current mayor is Donald Viel.

Origin of the name

There is much speculation as to what the "Ha! Ha!" refers to. The commission de toponymie asserts that it refers to nearby Lake Témiscouata, the sense of fr:haha here being an archaic French word for an unexpected obstacle or abruptly ending path. The Louis may refer to Louis Marquis, one of the first colonists of the region, or Louis-Antoine Proulx, vicar of Rivière-du-Loup, or perhaps the abbot Louis-Nicolas Bernier.

The exclamation marks were added colloquially and have since gained recognized status among Canadian federal institutions such as Poste Canada Post but often have not been as internationally recognized as in Westward Ho!

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