John Knight was the grandson of Joshua Knight, a United Empire Loyalist who settled on the Saint John River in New Brunswick in 1783. John was the youngest of 12 children. Almost nothing is known about John Knight before his arrival in Souris from Halifax in 1835 to manage the business of Shattuck and McKay.
Shortly after arriving in Souris, he became the owner of the wharf by aquiring it from Neil MacDonald. It this time Souris East was growing rapidly, John's vision and idea was to extend the wharf into a breakwater, which would create a large and sheltered harbour. American fishermen were soon sailing into the port seeking supplies from the locals and shelter from the storms. John built a store at the head of the wharf where he had a large business in ship chandlery. He later had shipyards in Souris West, Chepstow, and North Lake.
Throughout the late 1850's early 1860's John Knight acquired great wealth. He built a large house set in a formal garden on what is known as today as Knights Lane
The breakwater was completed in 1877, by contractors Pierce and Doyle. In Jan of the following year, a storm washed half of the breakwater away, as there had been no time to face it with rocks. Although crashed by gales of wind, contractors Thomas Mellish and George Wightman had the damage repaired and a new block added by late November. In 1896 another block was added making the total length of the breakwater 1,700 feet.