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Title: Canada: the Empire of the North - Being the Romantic Story of the New Dominion's Growth from Colony to Kingdom
Author: Laut, Agnes C. (Agnes Christina), 1871-1936
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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Being the Romantic Story of the
  New Dominion's Growth from
  Colony to Kingdom



Author of "The Conquest of the Great North-West" "Lords of the North,"

[Frontispiece: Map of Western Canada]

Boston and London
Ginn and Company, Publishers
Copyright, 1909, by Agnes C. Laut
Entered at Stationers' Hall
All Rights Reserved


To re-create the shadowy figures of the heroic past, to clothe the dead
once more in flesh and blood, to set the puppets of the play in life's
great dramas again upon the stage of action,--frankly, this may not be
formal history, but it is what makes the past most real to the present
day.  Pictures of men and women, of moving throngs and heroic episodes,
stick faster in the mind than lists of governors and arguments on
treaties.  Such pictures may not be history, but they breathe life into
the skeletons of the past.

Canada's past is more dramatic than any romance ever penned.  The story
of that past has been told many times and in many volumes, with far
digressions on Louisiana and New England and the kingcraft of Europe.
The trouble is, the story has not been told in one volume.  Too much
has been attempted.  To include the story of New England wars and
Louisiana's pioneer days, the story of Canada itself has been either
cramped or crowded.  To the eastern writer, Canada's history has been
the record of French and English conflict.  To him there has been
practically no Canada west of the Great Lakes; and in order to tell the
intrigue of European tricksters, very often the writer has been
compelled to exclude the story of the Canadian people,--meaning by
people the breadwinners, the toilers, rather than the governing
classes.  Similarly, to the western writer, Canada meant the Hudson's
Bay Company.  As for the Pacific coast, it has been almost ignored in
any story of Canada.

Needless to say, a complete history of a country as vast as Canada,
whose past in every section fairly teems with action, could not be
crowded into one volume.  To give even the story {iv} of Canada's most
prominent episodes and actors is a matter of rigidly excluding the

All that has been attempted here is such a story--_story, not
history_--of the romance and adventure in Canada's nation building as
will give the casual reader knowledge of the country's past, and how
that past led along a trail of great heroism to the destiny of a
Northern Empire.  This volume is in no sense formal history.  There
will be found in it no such lists of governors with dates appended, of
treaties with articles running to the fours and eights and tens, of
battles grouped with dates, as have made Canadian history a nightmare
to children.

It is only such a story as boys and girls may read, or the hurried
business man on the train, who wants to know "what was doing" in the
past; and it is mainly a story of men and women and things doing.

I have not given at the end of each chapter the list of authorities
customary in formal history.  At the same time it is hardly necessary
to say I have dug most rigorously down to original sources for facts;
and of secondary authorities, from _Pierre Boucher, his Book_, to
modern reprints of _Champlain and L'Escarbot_, there are not any I have
not consulted more or less.  Especially am I indebted to the
_Documentary History of New York_, sixteen volumes, bearing on early
border wars; to _Documents Relatifs à la Nouvelle France, Quebec_; to
the _Canadian Archives_ since 1886; to the special historical issues of
each of the eastern provinces; and to the monumental works of Dr.
Kingsford.  Nearly all the places described are from frequent visits or
from living on the spot.



"The Twentieth century belongs to Canada."

The prediction of Sir Wilfrid Laurier, Premier of the Dominion, seems
likely to have bigger fulfillment than Canadians themselves realize.
What does it mean?

Canada stands at the same place in the world's history as England stood
in the Golden Age of Queen Elizabeth--on the threshold of her future as
a great nation.  Her population is the same, about seven million.  Her
mental attitude is similar, that of a great awakening, a consciousness
of new strength, an exuberance of energy biting on the bit to run the
race; mellowed memory of hard-won battles against tremendous odds in
the past; for the future, a golden vision opening on vistas too far to
follow.  They dreamed pretty big in the days of Queen Elizabeth, but
they did n't dream big enough for what was to come; and they are
dreaming pretty big up in Canada to-day, but it is hard to forecast the
future when a nation the size of all Europe is setting out on the
career of her world history.

To put it differently: Canada's position is very much the same to-day
as the United States' a century ago.  Her population is about seven
million.  The population of the United States was seven million in
1810.  One was a strip of isolated settlements north and south along
the Atlantic seaboard; the other, a string of provinces east and west
along the waterways that ramify from the St. Lawrence.  Both possessed
and were flanked by vast unexploited territory the size of Russia; the
United States by a Louisiana, Canada by the Great Northwest.  What the
Civil War did for the United States, Confederation did for the Canadian
provinces--welded them into a nation.  The parallel need not be carried
farther.  If the same development {vi} follows Confederation in Canada
as followed the Civil War in the United States, the twentieth century
will witness the birth and growth of a world power.

To no one has the future opening before Canada come as a greater
surprise than to Canadians themselves.  A few years ago such a claim as
the Premier's would have been regarded as the effusions of the
after-dinner speaker.  While Canadian politicians were hoping for the
honor of being accorded colonial place in the English Parliament, they
suddenly awakened to find themselves a nation.  They suddenly realized
that history, and big history, too, was in the making.  Instead of
Canada being dependent on the Empire, the Empire's most far-seeing
statesmen were looking to Canada for the strength of the British
Empire.  No longer is there a desire among Canadians for place in the
Parliament at Westminster.  With a new empire of their own to develop,
equal in size to the whole of Europe, Canadian public men realize they
have enough to do without taking a hand in European affairs.

As the different Canadian provinces came into Confederation they were
like beads on a string a thousand miles apart.  First were the Maritime
Provinces, with western bounds touching the eastern bounds of Quebec,
but in reality with the settlements of New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia,
and Prince Edward Island separated from the settlements of Quebec by a
thousand miles of untracked forest.  Only the Ottawa River separated
Quebec from Ontario, but one province was French, the other English,
aliens to each other in religion, language, and customs.  A thousand
miles of rock-bound, winter-bound wastes lay between Ontario and the
scattered settlement of Red River in Manitoba.  Not an interest was in
common between the little province of the middle west and her sisters
to the east.  Then prairie land came for a thousand miles, and
mountains for six hundred miles, before reaching the Pacific province
of British Columbia, more completely cut off from other parts of Canada
than from Mexico or Panama.  In fact, it would have been easier for
British Columbia to trade with Mexico and Panama than with the rest of

{vii} To bind these far-separated patches of settlement, oases in a
desert of wilds, into a nation was the object of the union known as
Confederation.  But a nation can live only as it trades what it draws
from the soil.  Naturally, the isolated provinces looked for trade to
the United States, just across an invisible boundary.  It seemed absurd
that the Canadian provinces should try to trade with each other, a
thousand miles apart, rather than with the United States, a stone's
throw from the door of each province.  But the United States erected a
tariff wall that Canada could not climb.  The struggling Dominion was
thrown solely on herself, and set about the giant task of linking the
provinces together, building railroads from Atlantic to Pacific, canals
from tide water to the Great Lakes.  In actual cash this cost Canada
four hundred million dollars, not counting land grants and private
subscriptions for stock, which would bring up the cost of binding the
provinces together to a billion.  This was a staggering burden for a
country with smaller population than Greater New York--a burden as big
as Japan and Russia assumed for their war; but, like war, the
expenditure was a fight for national existence.  Without the railroads
and canals, the provinces could not have been bound together into a

These were Canada's pioneer days, when she was spending more than she
was earning, when she bound herself down to grinding poverty and big
risks and hard tasks.  It was a long pull, and a hard pull; but it was
a pull altogether.  That was Canada's seed time; this is her harvest.
That was her night work, when she toiled, while other nations slept;
now is the awakening, when the world sees what she was doing.  Railroad
man, farmer, miner, manufacturer, all had the same struggle, the big
outlay of labor and money at first, the big risk and no profit, the
long period of waiting.

Canada was laying her foundations of yesterday for the superstructure
of prosperity to-day and to-morrow--the New Empire.

When one surveys the country as a whole, the facts are so big they are

{viii} In the first place, the area of the Dominion is within a few
thousand miles of as large as all Europe.  To be more specific, you
could spread the surface of Italy and Spain and Turkey and Greece and
Austria over eastern Canada, and you would still have an area uncovered
in the east alone bigger than the German Empire.  England spread flat
on the surface of Eastern Canada would just serve to cover the Maritime
Provinces nicely, leaving uncovered Quebec, which is a third bigger
than Germany; Ontario, which is bigger than France; and Labrador
(Ungava), which is about the size of Austria.

In the west you could spread the British Isles out flat, and you would
not cover Manitoba--with her new boundaries extending to Hudson Bay.
It would take a country the size of France to cover the province of
Saskatchewan, a country larger than Germany to cover Alberta, two
countries the size of Germany to cover British Columbia and the Yukon,
and there would still be left uncovered the northern half of the
West--an area the size of European Russia.

No Old World monarch from William the Conqueror to Napoleon could boast
of such a realm.  People are fond of tracing ancestry back to feudal
barons of the Middle Ages.  What feudal baron of the Middle Ages, or
Lord of the Outer Marches, was heir to such heritage as Canada may
claim?  Think of it!  Combine all the feudatory domains of the Rhine
and the Danube, you have not so vast an estate as a single western
province.  Or gather up all the estates of England's midland counties
and eastern shires and borderlands, you have not enough land to fill
one of Canada's inland seas,--Lake Superior.

If there were a population in eastern Canada equal to France,--and
Quebec alone would support a population equal to France,--and in
Manitoba equal to the British Isles, and in Saskatchewan equal to
France, and in Alberta equal to Germany, and in British Columbia equal
to Germany,--ignoring Yukon, Mackenzie River, Keewatin, and Labrador,
taking only those parts of Canada where climate has been tested and
lands surveyed,--Canada would support two hundred million people.

{ix} The figures are staggering, but they are not half so improbable as
the actual facts of what has taken place in the United States.
America's population was acquired against hard odds.  There were no
railroads when the movement to America began.  The only ocean goers
were sailboats of slow progress and great discomfort.  In Europe was
profound ignorance regarding America; to-day all is changed.  Canada
begins where the United States left off.  The whole world is gridironed
with railroads.  Fast Atlantic liners offer greater comfort to the
emigrant than he has known at home.  Ignorance of America has given
place to almost romantic glamour.  Just when the free lands of the
United States are exhausted and the government is putting up bars to
keep out the immigrant, Canada is in a position to open her doors wide.
Less than a fortieth of the entire West is inhabited.  Of the Great
Clay Belt of North Ontario only a patch on the southern edge is
populated.  The same may be said of the Great Forest Belt of Quebec.
These facts are the magnet that will attract the immigrant to Canada.
The United States wants no more immigrants.

And the movement to Canada has begun.  To her shores are thronging the
hosts of the Old World's dispossessed, in multitudes greater than any
army that ever marched to conquest under Napoleon.  When the history of
America comes to be written in a hundred years, it will not be the
record of a slaughter field with contending nations battling for the
mastery, or generals wading to glory knee-deep in blood.  It will be an
account of the most wonderful race movement, the most wonderful
experiment in democracy the world has known.

The people thronging to Canada for homes, who are to be her nation
builders, are people crowded out of their home lands, who had n't room
for the shoulder swing manhood and womanhood need to carve out
honorable careers.  Look at them in the streets of London, or Glasgow,
or Dublin, or Berlin, these _émigrés_, as the French called their
royalists, whom revolution drove from home, and I think the word
_émigré_ is a truer description of the newcomer to Canada than the word
"emigrant."  They are {x} poor, they are desperately poor, so poor that
a month's illness or a shut-down of the factory may push them from
poverty to the abyss.  They are thrifty, but can neither earn nor save
enough to feel absolutely sure that the hollow-eyed specter of Want may
not seize them by the throat.  They are willing to work, so eager to
work that at the docks and the factory gates they trample and jostle
one another for the chance to work.  They are the underpinnings, the
underprops of an old system, these _émigrés_, by which the masses were
expected to toil for the benefit of the classes.

"It's all the average man or woman is good for," says the Old Order,
"just a day's wage representing bodily needs."

"Wait," says the New Order.  "Give him room!  Give him an opportunity!
Give him a full stomach to pump blood to his muscles and life to his
brain!  Wait and see!  If he fails _then_, let him drop to the bottom
of the social pit without stop of poorhouse or help!"

A penniless immigrant boy arrives in New York.  First he peddles
peanuts, then he trades in a half-huckster way whatever comes to hand
and earns profits.  Presently he becomes a fur trader and invests his
savings in real estate.  Before that man dies, he has a monthly income
equal to the yearly income of European kings.  That man's name was John
Jacob Astor.

Or a young Scotch boy comes out on a sailing vessel to Canada.  For a
score of years he is an obscure clerk at a distant trading post in
Labrador.  He comes out of the wilds to take a higher position as land
commissioner.  Presently he is backing railroad ventures of tremendous
cost and tremendous risk.  Within thirty years from the time he came
out of the wilds penniless, that man possesses a fortune equal to the
national income of European kingdoms.  The man's name is Lord

Or a hard-working coal miner emigrates to Canada.  The man has brains
as well as hands.  Other coal miners emigrate at the same time, but
this man is as keen as a razor in foresight and care.  From coal miner
he becomes coal manager, from manager {xi} operator, from operator
owner, and dies worth a fortune that the barons of the Middle Ages
would have drenched their countries in blood to win.  The man's name is
James Dunsmuir.

Or it is a boy clerking in a departmental store.  He emigrates.  When
he goes back to England it is to marry a lady in waiting to the Queen.
He is now known as Lord Mount-Stephen.

What was the secret of the success?  Ability in the first place, but in
the second, opportunity; opportunity and room for shoulder swing to
show what a man can do when keen ability and tireless energy have
untrammeled freedom to do their best.

Examples of the _émigrés'_ success could be multiplied.  It is more
than a mere material success; it is eternal proof that, given a fair
chance and a square deal and shoulder swing, the boy born penniless can
run the race and outstrip the boy born to power.

"Have you, then, no _menial_ classes in Canada?" asked a member of the
Old Order.

"No, I'm thankful to say," said I.

"Then _who_ does the work?"

"The workers."

"But what's the difference?"

"Just this: your menial of the Old Country is the child of a menial,
whose father before him was a menial, whose ancestors were in servile
positions to other people back as far as you like to go,--to the time
when men were serfs wearing an iron collar with the brand of the lord
who owned them.  With us no stigma is attached to work.  _Your_ menial
expects to be a menial all his life.  With our worker, just as sure as
the sun rises and sets, if he continues to work and is no fool, he will
rise to earn a competency, to improve himself, to own his own labor, to
own his own home, to hire the labor of other men who are beginners as
he once was himself."

"Then you have no social classes?"

"Lots.  The _ups_, who have succeeded; and the _half-way ups_, who are
succeeding; and the _beginners_, who are going to succeed; and the
_downs_, who never try.  And as success doesn't necessarily mean money,
but doing the best at whatever one tries, {xii} you can see that the
_ups_ and the _halfway ups_, and the _beginners_ and the _downs_ have
each their own classes of special workers."

"That," she answered, "is not democracy; it is revolution."  She was
thinking of those Old World hard-and-fast divisions of society into
royalty, aristocracy, commons, peasantry.

"It is not revolution," I explained.  "It is rebirth!  When you send
your _émigré_ out to us, he is a made-over man."

But it is not given to all _émigré's_ to become great capitalists or
great leaders.  Some who have the opportunity have not the ability, and
the majority would not, for all the rewards that greatness offers,
choose careers that entail long years of nerve-wracking, unflagging
labor.  But on a minor scale the same process of making over takes
place.  One case will illustrate.

Some years before immigration to Canada had become general, two or
three hundred Icelanders were landed in Winnipeg destitute.  From some
reason, which I have forgotten,--probably the quarantine of an
immigrant,--the Icelanders could not be housed in the government
immigration hall.  They were absolutely without money, household goods,
property of any sort except clothing, and that was scant, the men
having but one suit of the poorest clothes, the women thin homespun
dresses so worn one could see many of them had no underwear.  The
people represented the very dregs of poverty.  Withdrawing to the
vacant lots in the west end of Winnipeg,--at that time a mere
town,--the newcomers slept for the first nights, herded in the rooms of
an Icelander opulent enough to have rented a house.  Those who could
not gain admittance to this house slept under the high board sidewalks,
then a feature of the new town.  I remember as a child watching them
sit on the high sidewalk till it was dark, then roll under.
Fortunately it was summer, but it was useless for people in this
condition to go bare to the prairie farm.  To make land yield, you must
have house and barns and stock and implements, and I doubt if these
people had as much as a jackknife.  I remember how two or three of the
older women used to sit crying each night in despair till they
disappeared in the crowded house, fourteen or {xiii} twenty of them to
a room.  Within a week, the men were all at work sawing wood from door
to door at a dollar and a half a cord the women out by the day washing
at a dollar a day.  Within a month they had earned enough to buy lumber
and tar paper.  Tar-papered shanties went up like mushrooms on the
vacant lots.  Before winter each family had bought a cow and chickens.
I shall not betray confidence by telling where the cow and chickens
slept.  Those immigrants were not desirable neighbors.  Other people
moved hastily away from the region.  Such a condition would not be
tolerated now, when there are spacious immigration halls and sanitary
inspectors to see that cows and people do not house under the same
roof.  What with work and peddling milk, by spring the people were able
to move out on the free prairie farms.  To-day those Icelanders own
farms clear of debt, own stock that would be considered the possession
of a capitalist in Iceland, and have money in the savings banks.  Their
sons and daughters have had university educations and have entered
every avenue of life, farming, trading, practicing medicine, actually
teaching English in English schools.  Some are members of Parliament.
It was a hard beginning, but it was a rebirth to a new life.  They are
now among the nation builders of the West.

But it would be a mistake to conclude that Canada's nation builders
consisted entirely of poor people.  The race movement has not been a
leaderless mob.  Princes, nobles, adventurers, soldiers of fortune,
were the pathfinders who blazed the trail to Canada.  Glory, pure and
simple, was the aim that lured the first comers across the trackless
seas.  Adventurous young aristocrats, members of the Old Order, led the
first nation builders to America, and, all unconscious of destiny, laid
the foundations of the New Order.  The story of their adventures and
work is the history of Canada.

It is a new experience in the world's history, this race movement that
has built up the United States and is now building up Canada.  Other
great race movements have been a tearing down of high places, the
upward scramble of one class on the {xiv} backs of the deposed class.
Instead of leveling down, Canada's nation building is leveling up.

This, then, is the empire--the size of all the nations in Europe,
bigger than Napoleon's wildest dreams of conquest--to which Canada has


  Canada . . 3,750,000 square miles   Europe . . 3,797,410 square miles

  Maritime Provinces   Square Miles                   Square Miles
    Nova Scotia  . . . . .   20,600   England  . . . . .    50,867
    Prince Edward Island      2,000   Germany  . . . . .   208,830
    New Brunswick  . . . .   28,200   France   . . . . .   204,000
                             ------   Italy  . . . . . .   110,000
                             50,800   Spain  . . . . . .   197,000
  Quebec   . . . . . . . .  347,350   Austria and Hungary  241,000
  Ontario  . . . . . . . .  222,000   Russia in Europe   2,000,000
  Saskatchewan              204,000
  Alberta  . . . . . . . .  350,000
  British Columbia   . . .  383,000
  Unorganized Territory of
    Keewatin   . . . . . .  756,000
    Yukon  . . . . . . . .  200,000
    MacKenzie River and
      Ungava . . . . . .  1,000,000


        United States                         Canada
  In 1800 . . .   5,000,000           In 1881 . . .  4,300,000
   " 1810 . . .   7,000,000            " 1891 . . .  5,000,000
   " 1820 . . .   9,600,000            " 1901 . . .  5,500,000
   " 1830 . . .  12,800,000            " 1906 . . .  6,500,000

It will be noticed that for twenty years Canada's population becomes
almost stagnant. The reason for this will be found as the story of
Canada is related.  If she keeps up the increase at the pace she has
now set, or at the rate the United States' population went ahead during
the same period of industrial development, the results can be forecast
from the following table:

  United States in 1840 . . . . . . 17,000,000
    "      "    "  1850 . . . . . . 23,000,000
    "      "    "  1860 . . . . . . 31,000,000
    "      "    "  1870 . . . . . . 38,000,000
    "      "    "  1880 . . . . . . 50,000,000
    "      "    "  1890 . . . . . . 63,000,000
    "      "    "  1900 . . . . . . 85,000,000

{xv} A few years ago, when talking to a leading editor of Canada, I
chanced to say that I did not think Canadians had at that time awakened
to their future.  The editor answered that he was afraid I had
contracted the American disease of "bounce" through living in the
United States; to which I retorted that if Canadians could catch the
same disease and accomplish as much by it in the twentieth century as
Americans had in the nineteenth, it would be a good thing for the
country.  It is wonderful to have witnessed the complete face-about of
Canadian public opinion in the short space of six years, this editor
shouting as loud as any of his exuberant brethren.  Still, as the
outlook in Canadian affairs may be regarded as flamboyant, it is worth
while quoting the comment of the most critical and conservative
newspaper in the world,--the London _Times_.  The _Times_ says:
"Without doubt the expansion of Canada is the greatest political event
in the British Empire to-day.  The empire is face to face with
development which makes it impossible for indefinite maintenance of the
present constitutional arrangements."

Regarding the Iceland immigrants, to whom reference is made, I recently
met in London a famed traveler, who was in Iceland when the people were
setting out for Canada, Mrs. Alec. Tweedie.  She explains in her book
how these people were absolutely poverty-stricken when they left
Iceland.  In fact, the sufferings endured the first year in Winnipeg
were mild compared to their privations in Iceland before they sailed.

The explanations of Canada's hard times from Confederation to 1898--say
from 1871, when all the provinces had really gone into Confederation,
to 1897, when the Yukon boom poured gold into the country--can be
figured out.  Of a population of 3,000,000, four fifths need not be
counted as taxpayers, as they include women, children, clerks, farmers'
help, domestic help,--classes who pay no taxes but the indirect duty on
clothes they wear and food they eat.  This practically means that the
billion-dollar burden of making the ideal of Confederation into a
reality by building railroads and canals was borne by 600,000 people,
which means again a large quota per man to the public treasury.  People
forget that you can't take more out of the public treasury than you put
into it, that it is n't like an artesian well, self-supplied, and the
truth is, at this period Canadians were paying more into the public
treasury than they could afford,--more than the investment was bringing
them in.



CHAPTER                                         PAGE

    I. FROM 1000 TO 1600 . . . . . . . . . . . .   1

   II. FROM 1600 TO 1607 . . . . . . . . . . . .  23

  III. FROM 1607 TO 1635 . . . . . . . . . . . .  41

   IV. FROM 1635 TO 1666 . . . . . . . . . . . .  61

    V. FROM 1635 TO 1650 . . . . . . . . . . . .  71

   VI. FROM 1650 TO 1672 . . . . . . . . . . . .  94

  VII. FROM 1672 TO 1688 . . . . . . . . . . . . 117

 VIII. FROM 1679 TO 1713 . . . . . . . . . . . . 143

   IX. FROM 1686 TO 1698 . . . . . . . . . . . . 161

    X. FROM 1698 TO 1713 . . . . . . . . . . . . 189

   XI. FROM 1713 TO 1755 . . . . . . . . . . . . 205

  XII. FROM 1756 TO 1763 . . . . . . . . . . . . 241

 XIII. FROM 1763 TO 1812 . . . . . . . . . . . . 276

  XIV. FROM 1812 TO 1820 . . . . . . . . . . . . 318

   XV. FROM 1812 TO 1846 . . . . . . . . . . . . 380

  XVI. FROM 1820 TO 1867 . . . . . . . . . . . . 410

       INDEX . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 439




MAP OF WESTERN CANADA  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . _Frontispiece_

VIKING SHIP RECENTLY DISCOVERED  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  2
  After a photograph of the Viking Ship at Sandefjord, Norway.

  PORTUGAL   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  3

  ST. JOHN'S, NEWFOUNDLAND   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  4
  From a photograph.

SEBASTIAN CABOT  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  5
  After the portrait attributed to Holbein.

JACQUES CARTIER  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  8
  After the portrait at St. Malo, France, with signature.

  From a photograph.

ANCIENT HOCHELAGA  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
  After a cut in the third volume of Ramusio's _Raccolta_,
    Venice, 1565.

  DISCOVERIES  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21

QUEEN ELIZABETH  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25
  After the ermine portrait in Hatfield House, with signature.

THE BOYHOOD OF GILBERT AND RALEIGH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26
  From the painting by Sir John Millais.

SIR HUMPHREY GILBERT   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
  After the print in Holland's _Herwologia-Anglica_, 1620.

SIR WALTER RALEIGH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29
  After the portrait in the possession of the Duchess of Dorset.

AT EASTERN ENTRANCE TO HUDSON STRAITS  . . . . . . . . . . . . 31
  From a photograph by Dominion Geological Survey.

HUDSON COAT OF ARMS  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32
  From Lenox Collection, New York City.

THE FANTASTIC ROCKS OF GASPÉ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33
  From a photograph.


SAMUEL DE CHAMPLAIN  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34
  After the Moncornet portrait, with signature.

PORT ROYAL OR ANNAPOLIS BASIN, 1609  . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36
  From Lescarbot's map.

BUILDINGS ON STE. CROIX ISLAND   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38
  From _Les Voyages du Sieur de Champlain_, Paris, 1613.

PORT ROYAL   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43
  From the same.

TADOUSSAC  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45
  From the same.

DEFEAT OF THE IROQUOIS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47
  From the same.

THE ONONDAGA FORT  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55
  From the same.

VIEW OF QUEBEC   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56
  From the same.

QUEBEC   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
  From the same.

SIR WILLIAM ALEXANDER  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62
  After an engraved portrait by Marshall.


CARDINAL RICHELIEU   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66
  After the portrait by Philippe de Champaigne

MAP OF ANNAPOLIS BASIN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69

MADAME DE LA PELTRIE   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 73
  After a picture in the Ursuline Convent, Quebec.

PIERRE LE JEUNE  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 80
  From an engraving in Winsor's America, after an old print.

GEORGIAN BAY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84
  From a photograph by A. G. Alexander.

BRÉBEUF  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 89
  From a bust in silver at Quebec.

  IN 1891  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 91
  After a photograph reproduced in _Ontario Historical
    Society Papers and Records_.

  JESUIT HURON MISSIONS  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 92
  Bellin's map, 1744.

A CANADIAN ON SNOWSHOES  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 96
  From La Potherie's _Histoire de l'Amerique Septentrionale_,
    Paris, 1753.


SAUSON'S MAP, 1656 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 99

TITLE-PAGE--JESUIT RELATION OF 1662-1663   . . . . . . . . .  111

THE JESUIT MAP OF LAKE SUPERIOR  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  112
  From the Relation, of 1670-1671.

CHARLES II . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  114
  After the miniature portrait by Cooper, with signature.

PLAN OF MONTREAL IN 1672 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  119
  From _Quebec Historical Society Papers and Records_.

LA SALLE'S HOUSE NEAR MONTREAL   . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  120
  From a photograph.

KITCHEN, CHÂTEAU DE RAMEZAY, MONTREAL  . . . . . . . . . . .  120
  From a photograph.

LAVAL  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  122
  After the portrait in Laval University, Quebec.

A MAP IN THE RELATION OF 1662-1663 . . . . . . . . . . . . .  126

GALINÉE'S MAP OF THE GREAT LAKES, 1669   . . . . . . . . . .  129

ROBERT DE LA SALLE   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  135
  After an engraved portrait said to be preserved
    in the _Bibliothèque de Rouen_, with signature.

OLD PLAN OF FORT FRONTENAC   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  136
  From _Mémoirs sur le Canada_, Quebec, 1873.

THE BUILDING OF THE _GRIFFON_  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  138
  From Father Hennepin's _Nouvelle Découverte_, Amsterdam, 1704.

PRINCE RUPERT  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  145
  After the painting by Sir P. Lely.

MAP OF HUDSON BAY  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  147

  From La Potherie's _Histoire de l'Amerique Septentrionale_.

LE MOYNE D'IBERVILLE   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  157
  After a portrait in Margry's _Découvertes Établissemens_.

  From _The London Magazine_, 1758.

WILLIAM OF ORANGE  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  166
  After the portrait by Sir Godfrey Kneller, with signature.

QUEBEC, 1689 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  172
  From La Potherie's _Histoire de l'Amérique Septentrionale_.

FRENCH SOLDIER OF THE PERIOD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  174
  After a cut in Massachusetts Archives, Documents
    collected in France, 111, 3.

SIR WILLIAM PHIPS  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  176
  After an accepted likeness reproduced
    in Winsor's _America_.


COUNT FRONTENAC  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  178
  From the statue by Hébert at Quebec.

CASTLE ST. LOUIS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  180
  After a cut in Hawkins' _Pictures of Quebec_, Quebec, 1834.

ATTACK ON QUEBEC, 1690 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  181
  From La Hontan's _Mémoires_, 1709.

CASTLE ST. LOUIS, QUEBEC   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  183
  From Sulte's _Canadiens Français_, viii.

PLAN OF QUEBEC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  184
  From Franquelin, 1683.

  From La Potherie's _Histoire de l'Amérique Septentrionale_.

CAPTURE OF FORT NELSON BY THE FRENCH   . . . . . . . . . . .  187
  From the same.

CONTEMPORARY MAP, 1689 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  191
  From La Hontan.

HERTEL DE ROUVILLE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  193
  After a portrait in Daniel's _Nos Gloires Nationales_.

CONTEMPORARY PLAN OF PORT ROYAL BASIN  . . . . . . . . . . .  199
  From Bellin's map, 1744.

PAUL MASCARENE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  201
  After a portrait in Savary's edition
    of Calnek's _Annapolis_.

  After Jeffery's map, 1762.

  SEA OF THE WEST  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  209
  From the Mémoire presented to the Academy
    of Sciences at Paris by Buache, August, 1752.

  From the same.

WILLIAM PEPPERRELL   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  217
  After the portrait by Smibert.

  From a recent photograph.

  After a plan reproduced in Winsor's _America_.

FORT HALIFAX, 1755 (Restoration)   . . . . . . . . . . . . .  222

CONTEMPORARY VIEW OF OSWEGO  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  223
  From Smith's _History of the Province of New York_.

GOVERNOR DINWIDDIE OF VIRGINIA   . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  225
  After a portrait by Ramsay.


TITLE-PAGE OF WASHINGTON'S JOURNAL . . . . . . . . . . . . .  227

  From a contemporary manuscript in the Library
    of Harvard University.

PLAN OF FORT BEAUSEJOUR  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  230
  From Mante's _History of the Late War in North America_.

GENERAL MONCKTON . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  232
  After a mezzotint in the Library of the
    American Antiquarian Society.

GENERAL JOHN WINSLOW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  234
  After the portrait in Pilgrim Hall, Plymouth, Massachusetts.

MAP OF ACADIA AND THE ADJACENT ISLANDS, 1755 . . . . . . . .  237

SIR WILLIAM JOHNSON  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  238
  After the portrait by Adams.

MAP OF THE REGION OF LAKE GEORGE . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  239
  From _Documentary History of New York_.

RUINS OF CHÂTEAU BIGOT   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  245
  From a photograph by Captain Wurtelle.

PARLIAMENT BUILDINGS, OTTAWA   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  246
  From a photograph.

  From a photograph.

THE EARL OF LOUDON . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  249
  After the portrait by Ramsay.

BOSCAWEN   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  253
  After the portrait by Reynolds.

THE SIEGE OF LOUISBURG, 1758 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  255
  From a picture in the Lenox Collection,
    New York Public Library.

AMHERST  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  257
  After the portrait by Reynolds.

THE COUNTRY ROUND TICONDEROGA  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  259
  From _Documentary History of New York_.

GENERAL JAMES WOLFE  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  261
  After the engraved portrait by Houstin.

BOUGAINVILLE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  263
  After a cut in Bounechose's _Montcalm_.

  DURING THE SIEGE OF 1759 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  265
  After a plan in _The Universal Magazine_,
    London, December, 1859.

LOUIS JOSEPH, MARQUIS DE MONTCALM  . . . . . . . . . . . . .  268
  After the portrait in the possession of his descendants.

DEATH OF WOLFE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  272
  From the painting by West.


MAJOR ROBERT ROGERS  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  277
  After a mezzotint by an unknown engraver.
    Published in London, October 1, 1776


  After the portrait by Ramsay.

SETTLEMENTS ON THE DETROIT RIVER   . . . . . . . . . . . . .  283
  From Parkman's _Conspiracy of Pontiac_.

BOUQUET  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  289
  After the portrait by West.

RETURN OF THE ENGLISH CAPTIVES   . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  291
  After the painting by West.

MONTREAL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  293
  After a print in the New York Public Library.

SAMUEL HEARNE  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  297
  After an engraving published in 1796.

GENERAL RICHARD MONTGOMERY   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  301
  After the painting by Chappel.


SIR GUY CARLETON . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  307
  After an engraving in _The Political Magazine_, June, 1782.

BENEDICT ARNOLD  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  309
  After the portrait by Tate.

GENERAL HALDIMAND  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  311
  After the portrait by Reynolds.

JOSEPH BRANT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  315
  After the portrait by Ames.

LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR SIMCOE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  316
  After an engraving in Scadding's _Toronto of Old_.

CAPTAIN COOK   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  320
  After the portrait by Dauce.

FORT CHURCHILL AS IT WAS IN 1777 . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  320
  After a print in the _European Magazine_, June, 1797.

TOTEM POLES, BRITISH COLUMBIA  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  320
  From a photograph.

CAPTAIN GEORGE VANCOUVER   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  322
  After the portrait by Abbott.

NOOTKA SOUND   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  323
  From an engraving in Vancouver's _Journal_.

FORT CHIPPEWYAN, ATHABASCA LAKE  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  325
  From a recent photograph.


ALEXANDER MACKENZIE  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  327
  After the portrait by Lawrence.

CAUSE OF A PORTAGE   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  329
  From a photograph.

SIMON FRASER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  331
  From a likeness in Morice's _The History
    of the Northern Interior of British Columbia_.

ASTORIA IN 1813  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  332
  From a cut in Franchere's _Narrative of a Voyage_.

  EXPLORATIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  332
  From Laut's _Conquest of the Great North West_.

  1807-1811  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  336
  After an engraving at Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario.

WILLIAM HULL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  338
  After the portrait by Stuart, with autograph.

  ON THE DETROIT RIVER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  340

  THE NIAGARA FRONTIER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  342

GENERAL BROCK  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  345
  After a portrait in the possession of
    J. A. Macdonell Esq., Alexandria, Ontario.

BROCK MONUMENT, QUEENSTON HEIGHTS  . . . . . . . . . . . . .  347
  From a photograph.

YORK (TORONTO) HARBOR  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  351
  From Bouchette's _British Dominions in North America_.

FITZGIBBONS  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  357
  After a photograph reproduced in _Proceedings
  and Transactions of the Royal Society of Canada_, 1900.

LAURA SECORD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  361
  From _Ontario Historical Society Papers and Records_.

TWO VIEWS OF THE BATTLE OF LAKE ERIE   . . . . . . . . . . .  364
  From prints published in 1815

TECUMSEH   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  366
  After the drawing by Pierre Le Drie.

DE SALABERRY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  368
  After a portrait in Fannings Taylor's _Portraits of
    British Americans_.

SIR GORDON DRUMMOND  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  371
  After an engraving at Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario.

MONUMENT AT LUNDY'S LANE   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  375
  From a photograph.


SELKIRK  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  381
  From Ontario Archives Collection.

NELSON AND HAYES RIVERS  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  384
  From a map in Robson's _Hudson Bay_.

FORT GARRY, RED RIVER SETTLEMENT . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  387
  From Ross' _Red River Settlement_.

FORT DOUGLAS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  388
  After an old engraving.

  OF THE EARLY FORTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  391
  From Manitoba Historical Society

RED RIVER SETTLEMENT, 1816-1820  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  392
  After a map in Amos' _Report of the Trials Relative
    to the Destruction of the Earl of Selkirk's Settlement_.

  After a sketch.

TRACKING ON ATHABASCA RIVER  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  401
  From a photograph.

PLANS OF YORK AND PRINCE OF WALES FORTS  . . . . . . . . . .  405
  From a plate in Robson's _Hudson Bay_.


JOHN MCLOUGHLIN  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  408
  After a likeness in Laut's _Conquest
    of the Great Northwest_.

  After an engraving at Queen's University,
    Kingston, Ontario.

  1818-1819  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  419
  After an engraving at Queen's University,
    Kingston, Ontario.

WILLIAM LYON MACKENZIE   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  421
  After a likeness in Lindsey's _Life and Times of Mackenzie_.

ALLAN McNAB  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  423
  After the portrait in the Speaker's Chambers, Ottawa.

LOUIS J. PAPINEAU  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  428
  After a likeness in Fannings Taylor's _British Americans_.

  After an engraving at Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario.

  After an engraving at Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario.

JOHN A. MACDONALD  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  435
  From a photograph.

FATHERS OF CONFEDERATION, 1867   . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  436
  From the painting by Hariss.




FROM 1000 TO 1600

Early voyages to America--Voyages of the Cabots--The French fisher
folk--Cartier's first voyage--Cartier's second voyage--Cartier's third
voyage--Marguerite Roberval

Who first found Canada?  As many legends surround the beginnings of
empire in the North as cling to the story of early Rome.

When Leif, son of Earl Eric, the Red, came down from Greenland with his
Viking crew, which of his bearded seamen in Arctic furs leaned over the
dragon prow for sight of the lone new land, fresh as if washed by the
dews of earth's first morning?  Was it Thorwald, Leif's brother, or the
mother of Snorri, first white child born in America, who caught first
glimpse through the flying spray of Labrador's domed hills,--"Helluland,
place of slaty rocks"; and of Nova Scotia's wooded meadows,--"Markland";
and Rhode Island's broken vine-clad shore,--"Vinland"?  The question
cannot be answered.  All is as misty concerning that Viking voyage as the
legends of old Norse gods.

Leif, the Lucky, son of Earl Eric, the outlaw, coasts back to Greenland
with his bold sea-rovers.  This was in the year 1000.

For ten years they came riding southward in their rude-planked ships of
the dragon prow, those Norse adventurers; and Thorwald, Leif's brother,
is first of the pathfinders in America to lose his life in battle with
the "Skraelings" or Indians.  Thornstein, another brother, sails south in
1005 with Gudrid, his wife; but a roaring nor'easter tears the piping {2}
sails to tatters, and Thornstein dies as his frail craft scuds before the
blast.  Back comes Gudrid the very next year, with a new husband and a
new ship and two hundred colonists to found a kingdom in the "Land of the
Vine."  At one place they come to rocky islands, where birds flock in
such myriads it is impossible to land without trampling nests.  Were
these the rocky islands famous for birds in the St. Lawrence?  On another
coast are fields of maize and forests entangled with grapevines.  Was
this part of modern New England?  On Vinland--wherever it was--Gudrid,
the Norse woman, disembarks her colonists.  All goes well for three
years.  Fish and fowl are in plenty.  Cattle roam knee-deep in pasturage.
Indians trade furs for scarlet cloth and the Norsemen dole out their
barter in strips narrow as a little finger; but all beasts that roam the
wilds are free game to Indian hunters.  The cattle begin to disappear,
the Indians to lurk armed along the paths to the water springs.  The
woods are full of danger.  Any bush may conceal painted foe.  Men as well
as cattle lie dead with telltale arrow sticking from a wound.  The
Norsemen begin to hate these shadowy, lonely, mournful forests.  They
long for wild winds and trackless seas and open world.  Fur-clad, what do
they care for the cold?  Greenland with its rolling drifts is safer
hunting than this forest world.  What glory, doomed prisoners between the
woods and the sea within the shadow of the great forests and a great
fear?  The smell of wildwood things, of flower banks, of fern mold, came
dank and unwholesome to these men.  Their {3} nostrils were for the whiff
of the sea; and every sunset tipped the waves with fire where they longed
to sail.  And the shadow of the fear fell on Gudrid.  Ordering the
vessels loaded with timber good for masts and with wealth of furs, she
gathered up her people and led them from the "Land of the Vine" back to


Where was Vinland?  Was it Canada?  The answer is unknown.  It was south
of Labrador.  It is thought to have been Rhode Island; but certainly,
passing north and south, the Norse were the first white men to see Canada.

Did some legend, dim as a forgotten dream, come down to Columbus in 1492
of the Norsemen's western land?  All sailors of Europe yearly fished in
Iceland.  Had one of Columbus's crew heard sailor yarns of the new land?
If so, Columbus must have thought the new land part of Asia; for ever
since Marco Polo had come from China, Europe had dreamed of a way to Asia
by the sea.  What with Portugal and Spain dividing the New World, all the
nations of Europe suddenly awakened to a passion for discovery.


There were still lands to the north, which Portugal and Spain had not
found,--lands where pearls and gold might abound.  At Bristol in England
dwelt with his sons John Cabot, the Genoese master mariner, well
acquainted with Eastern-trade.  Henry VII commissions him on a voyage of
discovery--an empty honor, the King to have one fifth of all profit,
Cabot to bear all expense.  The _Matthew_ ships from Bristol with a crew
of eighteen in May of 1497.  North and west sails the tumbling craft two
thousand miles.  Colder grows the air, stiffer the breeze in the bellying
sails, till the _Matthew's_ crew are shivering on decks amid fleets of
icebergs that drift from Greenland in May and June.  This is no realm of
spices and gold.  Land looms through the mist the last week in June, {4}
rocky, surf-beaten, lonely as earth's ends, with never a sound but the
scream of the gulls and the moan of the restless water-fret along endless
white reefs.  Not a living soul did the English sailors see.  Weak in
numbers, disappointed in the rocky land, they did not wait to hunt for
natives.  An English flag was hastily unfurled and possession taken of
this Empire of the North for England.  The woods of America for the first
time rang to the chopper.  Wood and water were taken on, and the
_Matthew_ had anchored in Bristol by the first week of August.  Neither
gold nor a way to China had Cabot found; but he had accomplished three
things: he had found that the New World was not a part of Asia, as Spain
thought; he had found the continent itself; and he had given England the
right to claim new dominion.


England went mad over Cabot.  He was granted the title of admiral and
allowed to dress in silks as a nobleman.  King Henry gave him 10 pounds,
equal to $500 of modern money, and a pension of 20 pounds, equal to $1000
to-day.  It is sometimes said that modern writers attribute an air of
romance to these old pathfinders, {5} which they would have scorned; but
"Zuan Cabot," as the people called him, wore the halo of glory with glee.
To his barber he presented an island kingdom; to a poor monk he gave a
bishopric.  His son, Sebastian, sailed out the next year with a fleet of
six ships and three hundred men, coasting north as far as Greenland,
south as far as Carolina, so rendering doubly secure England's title to
the North, and bringing back news of the great cod banks that were to
lure French and Spanish and English fishermen to Newfoundland for
hundreds of years.

[Illustration: SEBASTIAN CABOT]

Where was Cabot's landfall?

I chanced to be in Bonavista Bay, Newfoundland, shortly after the 400th
anniversary of Cabot's voyage.  King's Cove, landlocked as a hole in a
wall, mountains meeting sky line, presented on one flat rock in letters
the size of a house claim that it was _here_ John Cabot sent his sailors
ashore to plant the flag on cairn of bowlders; but when I came back from
Newfoundland by way of Cape Breton, I found the same claim there.  For
generations the tradition has been handed down from father to son among
Newfoundland fisher folk that as Cabot's vessel, pitching and rolling to
the tidal bore, came scudding into King's Cove, rock girt as an inland
lake, the sailors shouted "Bona Vista--Beautiful View"; but Cape Breton
has her legend, too.  It was Cabot's report of the cod banks that brought
the Breton fishermen out, whose name Cape Breton bears.

{6} As Christopher Columbus spurred England to action, so Cabot now
spurred Portugal and Spain and France.

Gaspar Cortereal comes in 1500 from Portugal on Cabot's tracks to that
land of "slaty rocks" which the Norse saw long ago.  The Gulf Stream
beats the iron coast with a boom of thunder, and the tide swirl meets the
ice drift; and it isn't a land to make a treasure hunter happy till there
wander down to the shore Montaignais Indians, strapping fellows, a head
taller than the tallest Portuguese.  Cortereal lands, lures fifty savages
on board, carries them home as slaves for Portugal's galley ships, and
names the country--"land of laborers"--Labrador.  He sailed again, the
next year; but never returned to Portugal.  The seas swallowed his
vessel; or the tide beat it to pieces against Labrador's rocks; of those
Indians slaked their vengeance by cutting the throats of master and crew.

And Spain was not idle.  In 1513 Balboa leads his Spanish treasure
seekers across the Isthmus of Panama, discovers the Pacific, and realizes
what Cabot has already proved--that the New World is not a part of Asia.
Thereupon, in swelling words, he takes possession of "earth, air, and
water from the Pole Arctic to the Pole Antarctic" for Spain.  A few years
later Magellan finds his way to Asia round South America; but this path
by sea is too long.

From France, Normans and Bretons are following Cabot's tracks to
Newfoundland, to Labrador, to Cape Breton, "quhar men goeth a-fishing" in
little cockleshell boats no bigger than three-masted schooner, with
black-painted dories dragging in tow or roped on the rolling decks.
Absurd it is, but with no blare of trumpets or royal commissions, with no
guide but the wander spirit that lured the old Vikings over the rolling
seas, these grizzled peasants flock from France, cross the Atlantic, and
scatter over what were then chartless waters from the Gulf of St.
Lawrence to the Grand Banks.

Just as they may be seen to-day bounding over the waves in their little
black dories, hauling in . . . hauling in the endless line, or jigging
for squid, or lying at ease at the noonday hour {7} singing some old land
ballad while the kettle of cod and pork boils above a chip fire kindled
on the stones used as ballast in their boats--so came the French fisher
folk three years after Cabot had discovered the Grand Banks.  Denys of
Honfleur has led his fishing fleet all over the Gulf of St. Lawrence by
1506.  So has Aubert of Dieppe.  By 1517, fifty French vessels yearly
fish off the coast of New-Found-Land.  By 1518 one Baron de Lery has
formed the project of colonizing this new domain; but the baron's ship
unluckily came from the Grand Banks to port on that circular bank of sand
known as Sable Island--from twenty to thirty miles as the tide shifts the
sand, with grass waist high and a swampy lake in the middle.  The Baron
de Lery unloads his stock on Sable island and roves the sea for a better

The King of France, meanwhile, resents the Pope dividing the New World
between Spain and Portugal.  "I should like to see the clause in Father
Adam's will that gives the whole earth to you," he sent word to his
brother kings.  Verrazano, sea rover of Florence, is commissioned to
explore the New World seas; but Verrazano goes no farther north in 1524
than Newfoundland, and when he comes on a second voyage he is lost--some
say hanged as a pirate by the Spaniards for intruding on their seas.

In spite of the loss of the King's sea rover, the fisher folk of France
continue coming in their crazy little schooners, continue fishing in the
fogs of the Grand Banks from their rocking black-planked dories, continue
scudding for shelter from storm . . . here, there, everywhere; into the
south shore of Newfoundland; into the long arms of the sea at Cape
Breton, dyed at sundawn and sunset by such floods of golden light, these
arms of the sea become known as Bras d'Or Lakes--Lakes of Gold; into the
rock-girt lagoons of Gaspé; into the holes in the wall of Labrador . . .;
till there presently springs up a secret trade in furs between the
fishing fleet and the Indians.  The King of France is not to be balked by
one failure.  "What," he asked, "are my royal brothers to have _all_
America?"  Among the Bank fishermen were many sailors of St. Malo.
Jacques Cartier, master pilot, {8} now forty years of age, must have
learned strange yarns of the New World from harbor folk.  Indeed, he may
have served as sailor on the Banks.  Him the King chose, with one hundred
and twenty men and two vessels, in 1534, to go on a voyage of discovery
to the great sea where men fished.  Cartier was to find if the sea led to
China and to take possession of the countries for France.  Captain,
masters, men, march to the cathedral and swear fidelity to the King.  The
vessels sail on April 20, with the fishing fleet.

[Illustration: Jacques Cartier]

Piping winds carry them forward at a clipper pace.  The sails scatter and
disappear over the watery sky line.  In twenty days Cartier is off that
bold headland with the hole in the wall called Bona Vista.  Ice is
running as it always runs there in spring.  What with wind and ice,
Cartier deems it prudent to look for shelter.  Sheering south among the
scarps at Catalina, where the whales blow and the seals float in
thousands {9} on the ice pans, Cartier anchors to take on wood and water.
For ten days he watches the white whirl driving south.  Then the water
clears and his sails swing to the wind, and he is off to the north, along
that steel-gray shore of rampart rock, between the white-slab islands and
the reefy coast.  Birds are in such flocks off Funk Island that the men
go ashore to hunt, as the fisher folk anchor for bird shooting to-day.

Higher rises the rocky sky line; barer the shore wall, with never a break
to the eye till you turn some jagged peak and come on one of those snug
coves where the white fisher hamlets now nestle.  Reefs white as lace
fret line the coast.  Lonely as death, bare as a block of marble, Gull
Island is passed where another crew in later years perish as castaways.
Gray finback whales flounder in schools.  The lazy humpbacks lounge round
and round the ships, eyeing the keels curiously.  A polar bear is seen on
an ice pan.  Then the ships come to those lonely harbors north of
Newfoundland--Griguet and Quirpon and Ha-Ha-Bay, rock girt, treeless,
always windy, desolate, with an eternal moaning of the tide over the
fretful reefs.


{10} To the north, off a little seaward, is Belle Isle.  Here, storm or
calm, the ocean tide beats with fury unceasing and weird reëchoing of
baffled waters like the scream of lost souls.  It was sunset when I was
on a coastal ship once that anchored off Belle Isle, and I realized how
natural it must have been for Cartier's superstitious sailors to mistake
the moan of the sea for wild cries of distress, and the smoke of the
spray for fires of the inferno.  To French sailors Belle Isle became Isle
of Demons.  In the half light of fog or night, as the wave wash rises and
falls, you can almost see white arms clutching the rock.

As usual, bad weather caught the ships in Belle Isle Straits.  Till the
9th of June brown fog held Cartier.  When it lifted the tide had borne
his ships across the straits to Labrador at Castle Island, Château Bay.
Labrador was a ruder region than Newfoundland.  Far as eye could scan
were only domed rocks like petrified billows, dank valleys moss-grown and
scrubby, hillsides bare as slate; "This land should not be called earth,"
remarked Cartier.  "It is flint!  Faith, I think this is the region God
gave Cain!"  If this were Cain's realm, his descendants were "men of
might"; for when the Montaignais, tall and straight as mast poles, came
down to the straits, Cartier's little scrub sailors thought them giants.
Promptly Cartier planted the cross and took possession of Labrador for
France.  As the boats coasted westward the shore rock turned to
sand,--huge banks and drifts and hillocks of white sand,--so that the
place where the ships struck across for the south shore became known as
Blanc Sablon (White Sand).  Squalls drove Cartier up the Bay of Islands
on the west shore of Newfoundland, and he was amazed to find this arm of
the sea cut the big island almost in two.  Wooded mountains flanked each
shore.  A great river, amber with forest mold, came rolling down a deep
gorge.  But it was not Newfoundland Cartier had come to explore; it was
the great inland sea to the west, and to the west he sailed.

July found him off another kind of coast--New Brunswick--forested and
rolling with fertile meadows.  Down a broad shallow stream--the
Miramichi--paddled Indians waving furs {11} for trade; but wind
threatened a stranding in the shallows.  Cartier turned to follow the
coast north.  Denser grew the forests, broader the girths of the great
oaks, heavier the vines, hotter the midsummer weather.  This was no land
of Cain.  It was a new realm for France.  While Cartier lay at anchor
north of the Miramichi, Indian canoes swarmed round the boats at such
close quarters the whites had to discharge a musket to keep the three
hundred savages from scrambling on decks.  Two seamen then landed to
leave presents of knives and coats.  The Indians shrieked delight, and,
following back to the ships, threw fur garments to the decks till
literally naked.  On the 18th of July the heat was so intense that
Cartier named the waters Bay of Chaleur.  Here were more Indians.  At
first the women dashed to hiding in the woods, while the painted warriors
paddled out; but when Cartier threw more presents into the canoes, women
and children swarmed out singing a welcome.  The Bay of Chaleur promised
no passage west, so Cartier again spread his sails to the wind and
coasted northward.  The forests thinned.  Towards Gaspé the shore became
rocky and fantastic.  The inland sea led westward, but the season was far
advanced.  It was decided to return and report to the King.  Landing at
Gaspé on July 24, Cartier erected a cross thirty feet high with the words
emblazoned on a tablet, _Vive le Roi de France_.  Standing about him were
the painted natives of the wilderness, one old chief dressed in black
bearskin gesticulating protest against the cross till Cartier explained
by signs that the whites would come again.  Two savages were invited on
board.  By accident or design, as they stepped on deck, their skiff was
upset and set adrift.  The astonished natives found themselves in the
white men's power, but food and gay clothing allayed fear.  They
willingly consented to accompany Cartier to France.  Somewhere north of
Gaspé the smoke of the French fishing fleet was seen ascending from the
sea, as the fishermen rocked in their dories cooking the midday meal.

August 9 prayers are held for safe return at Blanc Sablon,--port of the
white, white sand,--and by September 5 Cartier is {12} home in St. Malo,
a rabble of grizzled sailor folk chattering a welcome from the wharf

He had not found passage to China, but he had found a kingdom; and the
two Indians told marvelous tales of the Great River to the West, where
they lived, of mines, of vast unclaimed lands.

Cartier had been home only a month when the Admiral of France ordered him
to prepare for another voyage.  He himself was to command the _Grand
Hermine_, Captain Jalobert the _Little Hermine_, and Captain Le Breton
the _Emerillon_.  Young gentlemen adventurers were to accompany the
explorers.  The ships were provisioned for two years; and on May 16,
1535, all hands gathered to the cathedral, where sins were confessed, the
archbishop's blessing received, and Cartier given a Godspeed to the music
of full choirs chanting invocation.  Three days later anchors were
hoisted.  Cannon boomed.  Sails swung out; and the vessels sheered away
from the roadstead while cheers rent the air.

Head winds held the ship back.  Furious tempests scattered the fleet.  It
was July 17 before Cartier sighted the gull islands of Newfoundland and
swung up north with the tide through the brown fogs of Belle Isle Straits
to the shining gravel of Blanc Sablon.  Here he waited for the other
vessels, which came on the 26th.

The two Indians taken from Gaspé now began to recognize the headlands of
their native country, telling Cartier the first kingdom along the Great
River was Saguenay, the second Canada, the third Hochelaga.  Near Mingan,
Cartier anchored to claim the land for France; and he named the great
waters St. Lawrence because it was on that saint's day he had gone
ashore.  The north side of Anticosti was passed, and the first of
September saw the three little ships drawn up within the shadow of that
somber gorge cut through sheer rock where the Saguenay rolls sullenly out
to the St. Lawrence.  The mountains presented naked rock wall.  Beyond,
rolling back . . . rolling back to an impenetrable wilderness . . . were
the primeval {13} forests.  Through the canyon flowed the river, dark and
ominous and hushed.  The men rowed out in small boats to fish but were
afraid to land.

As the ships advanced up the St. Lawrence the seamen could scarcely
believe they were on a river.  The current rolled seaward in a silver
flood.  In canoes paddling shyly out from the north shore Cartier's two
Indians suddenly recognized old friends, and whoops of delight set the
echoes ringing.

Keeping close to the north coast, russet in the September sun, Cartier
slipped up that long reach of shallows abreast a low-shored wooded island
so laden with grapevines he called it Isle Bacchus.  It was the Island of

Then the ships rounded westward, and there burst to view against the high
rocks of the north shore the white-plumed shimmering cataract of
Montmorency leaping from precipice to river bed with roar of thunder.

Cartier had anchored near the west end of Orleans Island when there came
paddling out with twelve canoes, Donnacona, great chief of Stadacona,
whose friendship was won on the instant by the tales Cartier's Indians
told of France and all the marvels of the white man's world.

Cartier embarked with several young officers to go back with the chief;
and the three vessels were cautiously piloted up little St. Charles
River, which joins the St. Lawrence below the modern city of Quebec.
Women dashed to their knees in water to welcome ashore these gayly
dressed newcomers with the gold-braided coats and clanking swords.
Crossing the low swamp, now Lower Town, Quebec, the adventurers followed
a path through the forest up a steep declivity of sliding stones to the
clear high table-land above, and on up the rolling slopes to the airy
heights of Cape Diamond overlooking the St. Lawrence like the turret of
some castle above the sea.  Did a French soldier, removing his helmet to
wipe away the sweat of his arduous climb, cry out "Que bec" (What a
peak!) as he viewed the magnificent panorama of river and valley and
mountain rolling from his feet; or did their Indian guide point to the
water of the river narrowing like {14} a strait below the peak, and
mutter in native tongue, "Quebec" (The strait)?  Legend gives both
explanations of the name.  To the east Cartier could see far down the
silver flood of the St. Lawrence halfway to Saguenay; to the south, far
as the dim mountains of modern New Hampshire.  What would the King of
France have thought if he could have realized that his adventurers had
found a province three times the size of England, one third larger than
France, one third larger than Germany?  And they had as yet reached only
one small edge of Canada, namely Quebec.

Heat haze of Indian summer trembled over the purple hills.  Below, the
river quivered like quicksilver.  In the air was the nutty odor of dried
grasses, the clear tang of coming frosts crystal to the taste as water;
and if one listened, almost listened to the silence, one could hear above
the lapping of the tide the far echo of the cataract.  To Cartier the
scene might have been the airy fabric of some dream world; but out of
dreams of earth's high heroes are empires made.

But the Indians had told of that other kingdom, Hochelaga.  Hither
Cartier had determined to go, when three Indians dressed as devils--faces
black as coals, heads in masks, brows adorned with elk horns--came
gyrating and howling out of the woods on the mountain side, making wild
signals to the white men encamped on the St. Charles.  Cartier's
interpreters told him this was warning from the Indian god not to ascend
the river.  The god said Hochelaga was a realm of snow, where all white
men would perish.  It was a trick to keep the white men's trade for

Cartier laughed.

"Tell them their god is an old fool," he said.  "Christ is to be our

The Indians wanted to know if Cartier had spoken to his God about it.

"No," answered Cartier.  Then, not to be floored, he added, "but my
priest has."

{15} With three cheers, fifty young gentlemen sheered out on September 19
from the St. Charles on the _Emerillon_ to accompany Cartier to Hochelaga.

[Illustration: ANCIENT HOCHELAGA.  (From Ramusio)]

Beyond Quebec the St. Lawrence widened like a lake.  September frosts had
painted the maples in flame.  Song birds, the glory of the St. Lawrence
valley, were no longer to be heard, but the waters literally swarmed with
duck and the forests were alive with partridge.  Where to-day nestle
church spires and whitewashed hamlets were the birch wigwams and night
camp fires of Indian hunters.  Wherever Cartier went ashore, Indians
rushed knee-deep to carry him from the river; and one old chief at
Richelieu signified his pleasure by presenting the whites with two Indian
children.  Zigzagging leisurely, now along the north shore, now along the
south, pausing to hunt, pausing to explore, pausing to powwow with the
Indians, the adventurers came, on September 28, to the reedy shallows and
breeding grounds of wild fowl at Lake St. Peter.  Here they were so close
ashore the _Emerillon_ caught her keel in the weeds, and the explorers
left her aground under guard and went forward in rowboats.

{16} "Was this the way to Hochelaga?" the rowers asked Indians paddling

"Yes, three more sleeps," the Indians answered by the sign of putting the
face with closed eyes three times against their hand; "three more nights
would bring Cartier to Hochelaga"; and on the night of the 2d of October
the rowboats, stopped by the rapids, pulled ashore at Hochelaga amid a
concourse of a thousand amazed savages.

It was too late to follow the trail through the darkening forest to the
Indian village.  Cartier placed the soldiers in their burnished armor on
guard and spent the night watching the council fires gleam from the
mountain.  And did some soldier standing sentry, watching the dark shadow
of the hill creep longer as the sun went down, cry out, "Mont Royal," so
that the place came to be known as Montreal?

At peep of dawn, while the mist is still smoking up from the river,
Cartier marshals twenty seamen with officers in military line, and, to
the call of trumpet, marches along the forest trail behind Indian guides
for the tribal fort.  Following the river, knee-deep in grass, the French
ascend the hill now known as Notre Dame Street, disappear in the hollow
where flows a stream,--modern Craig Street,--then climb steeply through
the forests to the plain now known as the great thoroughfare of
Sherbrooke Street.  Halfway up they come on open fields of maize or
Indian corn.  Here messengers welcome them forward, women singing,
tom-tom beating, urchins stealing fearful glances through the woods.  The
trail ends at a fort with triple palisades of high trees, walls separated
by ditches and roofed for defense, with one carefully guarded narrow
gate.  Inside are fifty large wigwams, the oblong bark houses of the
Huron-Iroquois, each fifty feet long, with the public square in the
center, or what we would call the courtyard.

It needs no trick of fancy to call up the scene--the winding of the
trumpet through the forest silence, the amazement of the Indian drummers,
the arrested frenzy of the dancers, the sunrise turning burnished armor
to fire, the clanking of swords, {17} the wheeling of the soldiers as
they fall in place, helmets doffed, round the council fire!  Women swarm
from the long houses.  Children come running with mats for seats.
Bedridden, blind, maimed are carried on litters, if only they may touch
the garments of these wonderful beings.  One old chief with skin like
crinkled leather and body gnarled with woes of a hundred years throws his
most precious possession, a headdress, at Cartier's feet.

Poor Cartier is perplexed.  He can but read aloud from the Gospel of St.
John and pray Christ heal these supplicants.  Then he showers presents on
the Indians, gleeful as children--knives and hatchets and beads and tin
mirrors and little images and a crucifix, which he teaches them to kiss.
Again the silver trumpet peals through the aisled woods.  Again the
swords clank, and the adventurers take their way up the mountain--a Mont
Royal, says Cartier.

The mountain is higher than the one at Quebec.  Vaster the view--vaster
the purple mountains, the painted forests, the valleys bounded by a sky
line that recedes before the explorer as the rainbow runs from the grasp
of a child.  This is not Cathay; it is a New France.  Before going back
to Quebec the adventurers follow a trail up the St. Lawrence far enough
to see that Lachine Rapids bar progress by boat; far enough, too, to see
that the Gaspé Indians had spoken truth when they told of another grand
river--the Ottawa--coming in from the north.

By the 11th of October Cartier is at Quebec.  His men have built a
palisaded fort on the banks of the St. Charles.  The boats are beached.
Indians scatter to their far hunting grounds.  Winter sets in.  Canadian
cold is new to these Frenchmen.  They huddle indoors instead of keeping
vigorous with exercise.  Ice hangs from the dismantled masts.  Drifts
heap almost to top of palisades.  Fear of the future falls on the crew.
Will they ever see France again?  Then scurvy breaks out.  The fort is
prostrate.  Cartier is afraid to ask aid of the wandering Indians lest
they learn his weakness.  To keep up show of strength he has his men fire
off muskets, batter the fort walls, march and drill and {18} tramp and
stamp, though twenty-five lie dead and only four are able to keep on
their feet.  The corpses are hidden in snowdrifts or crammed through ice
holes in the river with shot weighted to their feet.

In desperation Cartier calls on all the saints in the Christian calendar.
He erects a huge crucifix and orders all, well and ill, out in
procession.  Weak and hopeless, they move across the snows chanting
psalms.  That night one of the young noblemen died.  Toward spring an
Indian was seen apparently recovering from the same disease.  Cartier
asked him what had worked the cure and learned of the simple remedy of
brewed spruce juice.

By the time the Indians came from the winter hunt Cartier's men were in
full health.  Up at Hochelaga a chief had seized Cartier's gold-handled
dagger and pointed up the Ottawa whence came ore like the gold handle.
Failing to carry any minerals home, Cartier felt he must have witnesses
to his report.  The boats are rigged to sail, Chief Donnacona and eleven
others are lured on board, surrounded, forcibly seized, and treacherously
carried off to France.  May 6, 1536, the boats leave Quebec, stopping
only for water at St. Pierre, where the Breton fishermen have huts.  July
16 they anchor at St. Malo.

Did France realize that Cartier had found a new kingdom?  Not in the
least; but the home land gave heed to that story of minerals, and had the
kidnapped Indians baptized.  Donnacona and all his fellow-captives but
the little girl of Richelieu die, and Sieur de Roberval is appointed lord
paramount of Canada to equip Cartier with five vessels and scour the
jails of France for colonists.  Though the colonists are convicts, the
convicts are not criminals.  Some have been convicted for their religion,
some for their politics.  What with politics and war, it is May, 1541,
before the ships sail, and then Roberval has to wait another year for his
artillery, while Cartier goes ahead to build the forts.

From the first, things go wrong.  Head winds prolong the passage for
three months.  The stock on board is reduced to a diet of cider, and half
the cattle die.  Then the Indians of Quebec {19} ask awkward questions
about Donnacona.  Cartier flounders midway between truth and lie.
Donnacona had died, he said; as for the others, they have become as white
men.  Agona succeeds Donnacona as chief.  Agona is so pleased at the news
that he gives Cartier a suit of buckskin garnished with wampum, but the
rest of the Indians draw off in such resentment that Cartier deems it
wise to build his fort at a distance, and sails nine miles up to Cape
Rouge, where he constructs Bourg Royal.  Noel, his nephew, and Jalobert,
his brother-in-law, take two ships back to France.  While Cartier roams
exploring, Beaupré commands Bourg Royal.

In his roamings, ever with his eyes to earth for minerals, he finds
stones specked with mica, and false diamonds, whence the height above
Quebec is called Cape Diamond.  It is enough.  The crews spend the year
loading the ships with cargo of worthless stones, and set sail in May,
high of hope for wealth great as Spaniard carried from Peru.  June 8 the
ships slip in to St. John's, Newfoundland, for water.  Seventeen fishing
vessels rock to the tide inside the landlocked lagoon, and who comes
gliding up the Narrows of the harbor neck but Viceroy Roberval, mad with
envy when he hears of the diamond cargoes!  He breaks the head of a
Portuguese or two among the fishing fleet and forthwith orders Cartier
back to Quebec.

Cartier shifts anchor from too close range of Roberval's guns and says
nothing.  At dead of night he slips anchor altogether and steals away on
the tide, with only one little noiseless sail up on each ship through the
dark Narrows.  Once outside, he spreads his wings to the wind and is off
for France.  The diamonds prove worthless, but Cartier receives a title
and retires to a seigneurial mansion at St. Malo.

The episode did not improve Roberval's temper.  The new Viceroy was a
soldier and a martinet, and his authority had been defied.  With his two
hundred colonists, taken from the prisons of France, commanded by young
French officers,--a Lament and a La Salle among others,--he proceeded up
the coast of Newfoundland to enter the St. Lawrence by Belle Isle.  {20}
Among his people were women, and Roberval himself was accompanied by a
niece, Marguerite, who had the reputation of being a bold horsewoman and
prime favorite with the grandees who frequented her uncle's castle.
Perhaps Roberval had brought her to New France to break up her attachment
for a soldier.  Or the Viceroy may have been entirely ignorant of the
romance, but, anchored off Belle Isle,--Isle of Demons,--the angry
governor made an astounding discovery.  The girl had a lover on board, a
common soldier, and the two openly defied his interdict.  Coming after
Cartier's defection, the incident was oil to fire with Roberval.  Sailors
were ordered to lower the rowboat.  One would fain believe that the
tyrannical Viceroy offered the high-spirited girl at least the choice of
giving up her lover.  She was thrust into the rowboat with a faithful old
Norman nurse.  Four guns and a small supply of provisions were tossed to
the boat.  The sailors were then commanded to row ashore and abandon her
on Isle of Demons.  The soldier lover leaped over decks and swam through
the surf to share her fate.

Isle of Demons, with its wailing tides and surf-beaten reefs, is a
desolate enough spot in modern days when superstitions do not add to its
terrors.  The wind pipes down from The Labrador in fairest weather with
weird voices as of wailing ghosts, and in winter the shores of Belle Isle
never cease to echo to the hollow booming of the pounding surf.

Out of driftwood the castaways constructed a hut.  Fish were in plenty,
wild fowl offered easy mark, and in springtime the ice floes brought down
the seal herds.  There was no lack of food, but rescue seemed forever
impossible; for no fishing craft would approach the demon-haunted isle.
A year passed, two years,--a child was born.  The soldier lover died of
heartbreak and despondency.  The child wasted away.  The old nurse, too,
was buried.  Marguerite was left alone to fend for herself and hope
against hope that some of the passing sails would heed her signals.  No
wonder at the end of the third year she began to hear shrieking laughter
in the lonely cries of tide and wind, and to imagine that she saw
fiendish arms snatching through the spume of storm drift.

{21} Towards the fall of 1545, one calm day when spray for the once did
not hide the island, some fishermen in the straits noticed the smoke of a
huge bonfire ascending from Isle Demons.  Was it a trick of the fiends to
lure men to wreck, or some sailors like themselves signaling distress?

The boat drew fearfully near and nearer.  A creature in the strange
attire of skins from wild beasts ran down the rocks, signaling
frantically.  It was a woman.  Terrified and trembling, the sailors
plucked up courage to land.  Then for the first time Marguerite
Roberval's spirit gave way.  She could not speak; she seemed almost
bereft of reason.  It was only after the fishermen had nourished her back
to semblance of womanhood that they drew from her the story.  On
returning to France, Marguerite Roberval entered a convent.  It was there
an old court friend of her château days sought her out and heard the tale
from her own lips.


{22} A colony begun under such ill omen was not likely to prosper.
Roberval had proceeded to Cape Rouge, where he landed in July, and before
winter had a respectable fort constructed.  Fifty of his colonists died
of scurvy.  As many as six were hanged in a single day for
insubordination, and the whipping post became the emblem of an authority
that trembled in the balance.  Roberval, in troth, was not thinking of
the colony.  He was thinking of those minerals which the Indians said
were at the head waters of the Saguenay.  Leaving thirty women at the
fort, he ascended the Saguenay with seventy men in spring and explored as
far as Lake St. John, where the village of Roberval commemorates his
feat; but he found no minerals and lost eight men running rapids.  When
Cartier came out in 1543, Roberval took the remaining colonists home, a
profoundly embittered man.  Legend has it that he either perished on a
second voyage in 1549, or was assassinated in Paris.

So falls the curtain on the first attempt to colonize Canada.



FROM 1600 TO 1607

English voyages to North America--Sir Humphrey Gilbert--Henry
Hudson--Champlain's first voyage--Founding of Ste. Croix--The colonists
in Acadia

The second attempt to plant a French colony in the New World was more
disastrous than the first.

Though my Lord Roberval fails, the French fishing vessels continue to
bound over the billows of the Atlantic to the New World.  By 1578 there
are a hundred and fifty French fishing vessels off Newfoundland alone.
The fishing folk engage in barter.  Cartier's heirs ask for a monopoly of
the fur trade in Canada, but the grant is so furiously opposed by the
merchants of the coast towns that it is revoked until the Marquis de la
Roche, who had been a page at the French court, again obtains monopoly,
with many high-sounding titles as Governor, and the added obligation that
he must colonize the new land.  What with wars and court intrigue, it is
1598 before the Governor of Canada is ready to sail.  Of his two hundred
people taken from jails, all but sixty have obtained their freedom by
paying a ransom.  With these sixty La Roche follows the fishing fleet out
to the Grand Banks, then rounds southwestward for milder clime, where he
may winter his people.

Straight across the ship's course lies the famous sand bank, the
graveyard of the Atlantic,--what the old navigators called "the dreadful
isle,"--Sable Island.  The sea lies placid as glass between the crescent
horns of the long, low reefs,--thirty miles from horn to horn, with never
a tree to break the swale of the grass waist-high.

The marquis lands his sixty colonists to fish for supplies, while he goes
on with the crew to find place for settlement.

Barely has the topsail dipped over the watery sky before breakers begin
to thunder on the sand reefs.  Air and earth lash to fury.  Sails are
torn from the ship of the marquis.  His {24} masts go overboard, and the
vessel is driven, helpless as a chip in a maelstrom, clear back to the
ports of France.  Here double misfortune awaits La Roche.  His old
patrons of the court are no longer powerful.  He is thrown in prison by a
rival baron.

In vain the colonists strain tired eyes for a sail at sea.  Days become
weeks, weeks months, summer autumn; and no boat came back.  As winter
gales assailed the sea, sending the sand drifting like spray, the
convicts built themselves huts out of driftwood, and scooped beds for
themselves in the earth like rabbit burrows.  Of food there was plenty.
The people had their fishing lines; and the stock, left by the Baron de
Lery long ago, had multiplied and now overran the island.  Wild fowl,
too, teemed on the inland lake; and foxes, which must have drifted ashore
on the ice float of spring, ran wild through the sedge.

Like Robinson Crusoe cast on a desert isle, the desperate people fought
their fate.  Traps were set for the foxes, snares for the birds, and
scouts kept tramping from end to end of the island for sight of a sail.
Racked with despair and anxiety, these outcasts of civilization soon fell
to bitter quarreling.  Traps were found rifled.  Dead men lay beside the
looted traps; and, doubtless, not a few men lost their lives in spring
when the ice floes drifted down with the seal herds, and the men gave mad
chase from ice pan to ice pan for seal pelts to make clothing.  Spring
wore to summer.  The graves on the sand banks increased.  For a second
winter the dreary snowfall wrapped the island in a mantle white as death
sheet.  Then came the same weary monotony,--the frenzied seal hunt over
the blood-stained floes; the long summer days with the drone of the tide
on the sand banks; the men mad with hope at sight of a sail peak over the
far wave tops, only to be plunged in despair as the fisher boat passed
too far for signal; the fading of the grasses to russet in the sad autumn
light; then snowfall again--and despair.

Five years passed before La Roche could aid his people; and the pilot who
went to their rescue won himself immortal contempt by robbing the
castaways of their furs.  Word of the {25} rescue came to the ears of the
court.  Royalty commanded the refugees brought before the throne.  Only
twelve had survived, and these marched before the royal presence clothed
in the skins of seals, hair unkempt, beards to mid-waist, "like river
gods of yore," says the old record.  The King was so touched that he
commanded fifty crowns given to each man and the stolen furs restored.
La Roche died of chagrin.

While France is trying to colonize Canada, England has not forgotten that
John Cabot first coasted these northern shores and erected the English

[Illustration: QUEEN ELIZABETH]

About the time that Marguerite Roberval was left alone on Isle Demons,
two boys--half-brothers--were playing on the sands of the English
Channel, sailing toy boats and listening to sailor yarns of loot on the
Spanish Main.  One was Humphrey Gilbert; the other, Walter Raleigh.
These two were destined to lead England's first colonies to America.

Martin Frobisher had already poked the prows of English ships into the
icy straits of Greenland waters, seeking way to {26} China.  He had come
out with a fleet of fifteen sails and one hundred mariners in 1578 to
found colonies, but was led away by the lure of "fool's gold."  Loading
his vessels with worthless rocks which he believed contained gold enough
"to suffice all the gold gluttons of the world," he sailed back to
England without leaving the trace of a colony.  Francis Drake, the very
same year, had for the first time plowed an English furrow around the
seas of the world, chasing Spanish treasure boats up the west coast of
South America and loading his own vessel with loot to the water line.
Afraid to go back the way he had come, round South America, where all the
Spanish frigates lay in wait to catch him, Drake pushed on up the west
coast as far as California, and landing, took possession of what he
called "New Albion" for Queen Elizabeth.  But still no colony had been
planted for England.

[Illustration: THE BOYHOOD OF GILBERT AND RALEIGH.  (From the painting by
Sir John Millais)]

Gilbert and Raleigh, the two half-brothers, were both zealous for glory.
Both stood high in court favor.  Both had fought for Queen Elizabeth in
the wars.  Gilbert had fame as seaman and geographer.  He asks for the
privilege of founding England's first colony.  The Queen will incur no
expense.  Gilbert and Raleigh and their friends will fit out the vessels.
Elizabeth deeds to Gilbert all that old domain discovered by John Cabot,
reserving only one fifth of the minerals he may find; and she sends him a
present of a golden anchor as a Godspeed.  June 11, 1583, Sir Humphrey
sets sail with a fleet of three splendid merchantmen, fitted out as
men-of-war, and two heavily armed little frigates.  The crews number
three hundred and sixty men, but they are for the most part impressed
seamen and riotous.  The fleet is only well away when the biggest of the
merchantmen signals that plague has broken out, and flees back to
England.  Later, as fog hides the boats from one another, the pirate crew
on board the little frigate _Swallow_ run down an English fisherman on
the Grand Banks, board her, and at bayonet point loot the schooner from
stem to stern.  When the ships lower sail to come in on the tide through
the long Narrows, to the rock-girt harbor of St. John's, Newfoundland,
{27} the hundreds of fishing vessels lying at anchor there object to the
pirate _Swallow_; but Sir Humphrey reads his commission from the Queen,
and the fishing fleet roars a welcome that sets the rocks ringing.
Sunday, August 4, the next day after entering, Biscayans and French and
Portuguese and English send their new Governor tribute in
provisions,--fish from the English, marmalade and wines and spices from
the foreigners.  The admiral gives a feast to the master mariners each
week he is in port, and entertains--as the old record says--"right
bountifully."  Wandering round the rocky harbor, up the high cliff to the
left where remnants of an old fortress may be seen to-day, along the
circular hills to the right where the fishing stages cover the water
front, Gilbert's men find "fool's gold," rock with specks of iron and
mica.  Daniel, the refiner of metals, declares it is a rich specimen of
silver.  The find goes to Sir Humphrey's head.  He sees himself a second
Francis Drake, ships crammed with gold.  When the captains of the other
vessels in his fleet would see the treasure, he answers: "Content
yourselves!  It is enough!  I have seen it but I would have no speech
made of it in harbor; for the Portuguese and {28} Biscayans and French
might learn of it.  We shall soon return hither again."


Many of the men are in ill health.  Gilbert decides to send the invalids
home in the _Swallow_; but he transfers the bold pirate crew of that
frigate to the big ship _Delight_, which carries provisions for the
colony.  While planning to make St. John's the headquarters of his new
kingdom, Sir Humphrey wishes to explore those regions where Cartier had
gone and whence the fishing schooners bring such wealth in furs.

August 20 the remainder of his fleet rounds out of St. John's south west
for the Gulf of St. Lawrence,--the _Delight_ with the provisions, the
_Golden Hinde_ with the majority of the people, the little frigate
_Squirrel_ weighted down by artillery stores but under command of Gilbert
himself, because the smaller ship can run close ashore to explore.  To
keep up the spirits of the men, there is much merrymaking.  Becalmed off
Cape Breton, Sir Humphrey visits the big ship _Delight_, where the
trumpets and the drums and the pipes and the cornets reel off wild sailor
jigs.  "There was," says the old record, "little watching for danger."
Wednesday, August 26, the sounding line forewarned the reefs of Sable
Island.  Breakers were sighted.  The _Delight_ signaled that her captain
wanted to shift southwest to deeper water, but Gilbert wanted to enter
the St. Lawrence and signaled back to go on northwest.  That night a
storm raged.  The provision ship ran full tilt into the sand banks of
Sable Island, and was battered into chips before the other ships could
come to rescue.  All supplies were lost and all the pirate crew perished
but sixteen, who jumped into the pinnace dragging astern, and, with only
one oar, half punted, half drifted for seven days till the wave wash
carried them to the shores of Newfoundland.  There they were picked up by
a fishing vessel.

With provisions gone, Sir Humphrey Gilbert's colony was doomed.  He must
turn back.  Saturday, August 31, they reversed the course.  When halfway
across the Atlantic the admiral rowed from the little _Squirrel_ across
to the _Golden Hinde_ to have a lame foot treated by the surgeon.  "Cheer
{29} up," he urged the men.  "Next year her Majesty will loan me 1000
pounds, and we shall come again."

[Illustration: SIR WALTER RALEIGH]

As storm was gathering, the men begged him to remain on the larger ship,
but Gilbert refused to leave the sailors of the _Squirrel_.  The frigate
was as safe for him as for them, he said.  Some one called his attention
to the fact that the frigate was overweighted with cannon.  Gilbert
laughed all danger to scorn.  Soon afterwards the waves began to break
short and high--a dangerous sea for a small, overweighted ship.  It had
been arranged that both ships should swing lanterns fore and aft to keep
each other in sight at night.  On the night of September 9 a
phosphorescent light was seen to gleam above the mainmast of the
_Squirrel_,--certain sign to the superstitious sailors of dire disaster;
but when the _Hinde_ slackened speed, and the great waves threw the
vessels almost together, there was Sir Humphrey sitting aloft, book in
hand, shouting out, "We are as near Heaven by sea as by land."  The
_Hinde_ fell to the rear.  The _Squirrel_ led away, her stern lanterns
lighting a trail across the shiny dark of the tempestuous billows.
Suddenly, at midnight, the guiding {30} light was lost.  The _Squirrel's_
stern lanterns were seen to descend the pitching trough of a mountain
wave, and when the wall of water fell, no light came up.  Down into the
abyss the little craft had plunged, never to rise again, carrying
explorer, treasure hunters, colonists, to a watery grave.

It may be added that the disaster took place halfway across the ocean,
and not off Newfoundland, as the ballad relates.

But for all this misfortune, England did not desist.  The very next year
Raleigh, who had played on the sands with Humphrey Gilbert, sends out his
colonists to the Roanoke, and lays the foundations for the beginning of
empire in the Southern States.  English sailors explore Cape Cod.  Ten
years after Frobisher had brought home his cargo of worthless stones from
Labrador, Davis, the master mariner, is out exploring the waters west of
Greenland; and Henry Hudson, the English pilot who had discovered Hudson
River, New York, for the Dutch, is retained by the English in 1610 to
explore those waters west of Greenland where both Frobisher and Davis
reported open passage.

It is midsummer of 1610 when Hudson enters Hudson Straits.  The ice jam
of Ungava Bay, Labrador, has almost torn his ships' timbers apart and has
set fear shivering like an aspen leaf among the crew.  Old Juett, the
mate, rages openly at Hudson for venturing such a frail ship on such a
sea; but when the ship anchors at the west end of Hudson Straits, five
hundred miles from the Atlantic, there opens to view another sea,--a sea
large as the Mediterranean, that, like the Mediterranean, may lead to
another world.  It is as dangerous to go back as forward; and forward
Hudson sails, southwestward for that sea Drake had cruised off
California, the old mate's mutiny rumbling beneath decks like a volcano.
South, southwestward, seven hundred miles sails Hudson, past the high
rocks and airy cataracts of Richmond Gulf, past silence like the realms
of death, on down where Hudson Bay rounds into James Bay and the shallows
plainly show this is no way to a western sea, but a blind inlet,
bowlder-strewn and muddy as swamps.



When the ship runs aground and all hands must out to waist in ice water
to pull her ashore as the tide comes in, Juett's rage bursts all bounds.
As they toil, snow begins to fall.  They are winter bound and storm bound
in an unknown land.  Half the crew are in open mutiny; the other half
build winter quarters and range the woods of James Bay for game.  Of game
there is plenty, but the rebels refuse to hunt.  A worthless lad named
Green, whom Hudson had picked off the streets of London, turns traitor
and talebearer, fomenting open quarrels till the commander threatens he
will hang to the yardarm the first man guilty of disobedience.  So passes
the sullen winter.  Provisions are short when the ship weighs anchor for
England in June of 1611.  With tears in his eyes, Hudson hands out the
last rations.  Ice blocks the way.  Delay means starvation.  If the crew
were only half as large, Henry Green whispers to the mutineers, there
would be food enough for passage home.  The ice floes clear, the sails
swing rattling to the breeze, but as Hudson steps on deck, the mutineers
leap upon him like wolves.  He is bound and thrown into the rowboat.
With him are thrust his son and {32} eight others of the crew.  The rope
is cut, the rowboat jerks back adrift, and Hudson's vessel, manned by
mutineers, drives before the wind.  A few miles out, the mutineers lower
sails to rummage for food.  The little boat with the castaways is seen
coming in pursuit.  Guilt-haunted, the crew out with all sails and flee
as from avenging ghosts.  So passes Henry Hudson from the ken of all men,
though Indian legend on the shores of Hudson Bay to this day maintains
that the castaways landed north of Rupert and lived among the savages.

[Illustration: HUDSON COAT OF ARMS]

Not less disastrous were English efforts than French to colonize the New
World.  Up to 1610 Canada's story is, in the main, a record of blind
heroism, dogged courage, death that refused to acknowledge defeat.

Four hundred French vessels now yearly come to reap the harvest of the
sea; in and out among the fantastic rocks of Gaspé, pierced and pillared
and scooped into caves by the wave wash, where fisher boats reap other
kind of harvest, richer than the silver harvest of the sea,--harvest of
beaver, and otter, and marten; up the dim amber waters of the Saguenay,
within the shadow of the somber gorge, trafficking baubles of bead and
red print for furs, precious furs.  Pontgravé, merchant prince, comes out
with fifty men in 1600, and leaves sixteen at Tadoussac, ostensibly as
colonists, really as wood lopers to scatter through the forests and learn
the haunts of the Indians.  Pontgravé comes back for men and furs in
1601, and comes again in 1603 with two vessels, accompanied by a soldier
of fortune from the French court, who acts as geographer,--Samuel
Champlain, now in his thirty-sixth year, with service in war to his
credit and a journey across Spanish America.

{33} The two vessels are barely as large as coastal schooners; but
shallow draft enables them to essay the Upper St. Lawrence far as Mount
Royal, where Cartier had voyaged.  Of the palisaded Indian fort not a
vestige remains.  War or plague has driven the tribe westward, but it is
plain to the court geographer that, in spite of former failures, this
land of rivers like lakes, and valleys large as European kingdoms, is fit
for French colonists.


When Champlain returns to France the King readily grants to Sieur de
Monts a region roughly defined as anywhere between Pennsylvania and
Labrador, designated Acadia.  This region Sieur de Monts is to colonize
in return for a monopoly of the fur trade.  When other traders complain,
De Monts quiets them by letting them all buy shares in the venture.  With
him are associated as motley a throng of treasure seekers as ever
stampeded for gold.  There is Samuel Champlain, the court geographer;
there is Pontgravé, the merchant prince, on a separate {34} vessel with
stores for the colonists.  Pontgravé is to attend especially to the fur
trading.  There are the Baron de Poutrincourt and his young son,
Biencourt, and other noblemen looking for broader domains in the New
World; and there are the usual riffraff of convicts taken from dungeons.
Priests go to look after the souls of the Catholics, Huguenot ministers
to care for the Protestants, and so valiantly do these dispute with
tongues and fists that the sailors threaten to bury them in the same
grave to see if they can lie at peace in death.


Before the boats sight Acadia, it is early summer of 1604.  Pontgravé
leaves stores with De Monts and sails on up to Tadoussac.  De Monts
enters the little bay of St. Mary's, off the northwest corner of Nova
Scotia, and sends his people ashore to explore.

Signs of minerals they seek, rushing pellmell through the woods, gleeful
as boys out of school.  The forest is pathless and dense with June
undergrowth, shutting out the sun and all sign of direction.  The company
scatters.  Priest Aubry, more used to the cobble pavement of Paris than
to the tangle of ferns, grows fatigued and drinks at a fresh-water rill.
Going in the direction of his comrades' voices, he suddenly realizes that
he has left his sword at the spring.  The priest hurries back for the
sword, loses his companions' voices, and when he would return, finds that
he is hopelessly lost.  The last shafts of {35} sunlight disappear.  The
chill of night settles on the darkening woods.  The priest shouts till he
is hoarse and fires off his pistol; but the woods muffle all sound but
the scream of the wild cat or the uncanny hoot of the screech owl.  Aubry
wanders desperately on and on in the dark, his cassock torn to tatters by
the brushwood, his way blocked by the undisturbed windfall of countless
ages, . . . on and on, . . . till gray dawn steals through the forest and
midday wears to a second night.

Back at the boat were wild alarm and wilder suspicions.  Could the
Huguenots, with whom Aubry had battled so violently, have murdered him?
De Monts scouted the notion as unworthy, but the suspicion clung in spite
of fiercest denials.  All night cannon were fired from the vessel and
bonfires kept blazing on shore; but two or three days passed, and the
priest did not come.

De Monts then sails on up the Bay of Fundy, which he calls French Bay,
and by the merest chance sheers through an opening eight hundred feet
wide to the right and finds himself in the beautiful lakelike Basin of
Annapolis, broad chough to harbor all the French navy, with a shore line
of wooded meadows like home-land parks.  Poutrincourt is so delighted, he
at once asks for an estate here and names the domain Port Royal.

On up Fundy Bay sails De Monts, Samuel Champlain ever leaning over decks,
making those maps and drawings which have come down from that early
voyage.  The tides carry to a broad river on the north side.  It is St.
John's Day.  They call the river St. John, and wander ashore, looking
vainly for more minerals.  Westward is another river, known to-day as the
Ste. Croix, the boundary between Maine and New Brunswick.  Dochet Island
at its mouth seems to offer what to a soldier is an ideal site.  A fort
here could command either Fundy Bay or the upland country, which Indians
say leads back to the St. Lawrence.  Thinking more of fort than farms, De
Monts plants his colony on Ste. Croix River, on an island composed mainly
of sand and rock.

While workmen labor to erect a fort on the north side, the pilot is sent
back to Nova Scotia to prospect for minerals.  As {36} the vessel coasts
near St. Mary's Bay, a black object is seen moving weakly along the
shore.  Sailors and pilot gaze in amazement.  A hat on the end of a pole
is waved weakly from the beach.  The men can scarcely believe their
senses.  It must be the priest, though sixteen days have passed since he
disappeared.  For two weeks Aubry had wandered, living on berries and
roots, before he found his way back to the sea.

[Illustration: PORT ROYAL OR ANNAPOLIS BASIN, 1609  (From Lescarbot's

Here, then, at last, is founded the first colony in Canada, a little
palisaded fort of seventy-nine men straining longing eyes at the sails of
the vessel gliding out to sea; for Pontgravé has taken one vessel up the
St. Lawrence to trade, and Poutrincourt has gone back to France with the
other for supplies.  A worse beginning could hardly have been made.  The
island was little better than a sand heap.  No hills shut out the cold
winds that swept down the river bed from the north, and the tide carried
in ice jam from the south.  As the snow began to fall, padding the
stately forests with a silence as of death, whitening the gaunt spruce
trees somber as funereal mourners, the colonists felt the icy loneliness
of winter in a forest chill their hearts.  {37} Cooped up on the island
by the ice, they did little hunting.  Idleness gives time for repinings.
Scurvy came, and before spring half the colonists had peopled the little
cemetery outside the palisades.  De Monts has had enough of Ste. Croix.
When Pontgravé comes out with forty more men in June, De Monts prepares
to move.  Champlain had the preceding autumn sailed south seeking a
better site; and now with De Monts he sails south again far as Cape Cod,
looking for a place to plant the capital of New France.  It is amusing to
speculate that Canada might have included as far south as Boston, if they
had found a harbor to their liking; but they saw nothing to compare with
Annapolis Basin, narrow of entrance, landlocked, placid as a lake, with
shores wooded like a park; and back they cruised to Ste. Croix in August,
to move the colony across to Nova Scotia, to Annapolis Basin of Acadia.
While Champlain and Pontgravé volunteer to winter in the wilderness, De
Monts goes home to look after his monopoly in France.

What had De Monts to show for his two years' labor?  His company had
spent what would be $20,000 in modern money, and all returns from fur
trade had been swallowed up prolonging the colony.  While Champlain
hunted moose in the woods round Port Royal and Pontgravé bartered furs
during the winter of 1605-1606, De Monts and Poutrincourt and the gay
lawyer Marc Lescarbot fight for the life of the monopoly in Paris and
point out to the clamorous merchants that the building of a French empire
in the New World is of more importance than paltry profits.  De Monts
remains in France to stem the tide rising against him, while Poutrincourt
and Lescarbot sail on the _Jonas_ with more colonists and supplies for
Port Royal.

Noon, July 27, 1606, the ship slips into the Basin of Annapolis.  To
Lescarbot, the poet lawyer, the scene is a fairyland--the silver flood of
the harbor motionless as glass, the wooded meadows dank with bloom, the
air odorous of woodland smells, the blue hills rimming round the sky, and
against the woods of the north shore the chapel spire and thatch roofs
and slab walls of the little fort, the one oasis of life in a wilderness.
{38} As the sails rattled down and the anchor dropped, not a soul
appeared from the fort.  The gates were bolted fast.  The _Jonas_ runs up
the French ensign.  Then a canoe shoots out from the brushwood, paddled
by the old chief Membertou.  He signals back to the watchers behind the
gates.  Musketry shots ring out welcome.  The ship's cannon answer,
setting the waters churning.  Trumpets blare.  The gates fly wide and out
marches the garrison--two lone Frenchmen.  The rest, despairing of a ship
that summer, have cruised along to Cape Breton to obtain supplies from
French fishermen, whence, presently, come Pontgravé and Champlain,
overjoyed to find the ship from France.  Poutrincourt has a hogshead of
wine rolled to the courtyard and all hands fitly celebrate.

[Illustration: BUILDINGS ON STE. CROIX ISLAND, 1613  (From Champlain's

When Pontgravé carries the furs to France, Marc Lescarbot, the lawyer
poet, proves the life of the fort for this, the third winter of the
colonists in Acadia.  Poutrincourt and his son {39} attend to trade.
Champlain, as usual, commands; and dull care is chased away by a thousand
pranks of the Paris advocate.  First, he sets the whole fort a-gardening,
and Baron Poutrincourt forgets his _noblesse_ long enough to wield the
hoe.  Then Champlain must dam up the brook for a trout pond.  The weather
is almost mild as summer until January.  The woods ring to many a merry
picnic, fishing excursion, or moose hunt; and when snow comes, the gay
Lescarbot along with Champlain institutes a New World order of
nobility--the Order of Good Times.  Each day one of the number must cater
to the messroom table of the fort.  This means keen hunting, keen rivalry
for one to outdo another in the giving of sumptuous feasts.  And all is
done with the pomp and ceremony of a court banquet.  When the chapel bell
rings out noon hour and workers file to the long table, there stands the
Master of the Revels, napkin on shoulder, chain of honor round his neck,
truncheon in his hand.  The gavel strikes, and there enter the
Brotherhood, each bearing a steaming dish in his hand,--moose hump,
beaver tail, bears' paws, wild fowl smelling luscious as food smells only
to out-of-doors men.  Old Chief Membertou dines with the whites.
Crouching round the wall behind the benches are the squaws and the
children, to whom are flung many a tasty bit.

At night time, round the hearth fire, when the roaring logs set the
shadows dancing on the rough-timbered floor, the truncheon and chain of
command are pompously transferred to the new Grand Master.  It is all
child's play, but it keeps the blood of grown men coursing hopefully.

Or else Lescarbot perpetrates a newspaper,--a handwritten sheet giving
the doings of the day,--perhaps in doggerel verse of his own composing.
At other times trumpets and drums and pipes keep time to a dance.  As all
the warring clergymen, both Huguenot and Catholic, have died of scurvy,
Lescarbot acts as priest on Sundays, and winds up the day with cheerful
excursions up the river, or supper spread on the green.  The lawyer's
good spirits proved contagious.  The French songs that rang through the
woods of Acadia, keeping time to the chopper's {40} labors, were the best
antidote to scurvy; but the wildwood happiness was too good to last.
While L'Escarbot was writing his history of the new colonies a bolt fell
from the blue.  Instead of De Monts' vessel there came in spring a
fishing smack with word that the grant of Acadia had been rescinded.  No
more money would be advanced.  Poutrincourt and his son, Biencourt,
resolved to come back without the support of a company; but for the
present all took sad leave of the little settlement--Poutrincourt,
Champlain, L'Escarbot--and sailed with the Cape Breton fishing fleet for
France, where they landed in October, 1607.

Cartier, Roberval, La Roche, De Monts--all had failed to establish France
in Canada; and as for England, Sir Humphrey's colonists lay bleaching
skeletons at the bottom of the sea.



FROM 1607 TO 1635

Argall of Virginia attacks the French--Champlain on the St.
Lawrence--Champlain and the Iroquois--Champlain explores the
Ottawa--Champlain with the Indians--Discovery of the Great Lakes--War
with the Iroquois--Conflicting interests in New France--The English
take Quebec

Though the monopoly had been rescinded, Poutrincourt set himself to
interesting merchants in the fur trade of Acadia, and the French king
confirmed to him the grant of Port Royal.  Yet it was 1610 before Baron
Poutrincourt had gathered supplies to reëstablish the colony, and an
ominous cloud rose on the horizon, threatening his supremacy in the New
World.  Nearly all the merchants supporting him were either Huguenots
or moderate Catholics.  The Jesuits were all powerful at court, and
were pressing for a part in his scheme.  The Jesuit, Father Biard, was
waiting at Bordeaux to join the ship.  Poutrincourt evaded issues with
such powerful opponents.  He took on board Father La Fléché, a
moderate, and gave the Jesuit the slip by sailing from Dieppe in

To this quarrel there are two sides, as to all quarrels.  The colony
must now be supported by the fur trade; and fur traders, world over,
easily add to their profits by deeds which will not bear the censure of
missionaries.  On the other hand, to Poutrincourt, the Jesuits meant
divided authority; and the most lawless scoundrel that ever perpetrated
crimes in the fur trade could win over the favor of the priests by a
hypocritical semblance of contrition at the confessional.  Contrition
never yet undid a crime; and civil courts can take no cognizance of

When the ships sailed in to Port Royal the little fort was found
precisely as it had been left.  Not even the furniture had been
disturbed, and old Membertou, the Indian chief, welcomed the white men
back with taciturn joy.  Père La Fléché assembles the savages, tells
them the story of the Christian faith, then to the beat of drum and
chant of "Te Deum" receives, one {42} afternoon, twenty naked converts
into the folds of the church.  Membertou is baptized Henry, after the
King, and all his frowsy squaws renamed after ladies of the most
dissolute court in Christendom.

Young Biencourt is to convey the ship back to France.  He finds that
the Queen Dowager has taken the Jesuits under her especial protection.
Money enough to buy out the interests of the Huguenot merchants for the
Jesuits has been advanced.  Fathers Biard and Massé embark on _The
Grace of God_ with young Biencourt in January, 1611, for Port Royal.
Almost at once the divided authority results in trouble.  Coasting the
Bay of Fundy, Biencourt discovers that Pontgravé's son has roused the
hostility of the Indians by some shameless act.  Young Biencourt is for
hanging the miscreant to the yardarm, but the sinner gains the ear of
the saints by woeful tale of penitence, and Father Biard sides with
young Pontgravé.  Instead of the gayety that reigned at Port Royal in
L'Escarbot's day, now is sullen mistrust.

The Jesuits threaten young Biencourt with excommunication.  Biencourt
retaliates by threatening _them_ with expulsion.  For three months no
religious services are held.  The boat of 1612 brings out another
Jesuit, Gilbert du Thet; and the _Jonas_, which comes in 1613 with
fifty more men,--La Saussaye, commander, Fleury, captain,--has been
entirely outfitted by friends of the Jesuits.  By this time Baron de
Poutrincourt, in France, was involved in debt beyond hope; but his
right to Port Royal was unshaken, and the Jesuits decided to steer
south to seek a new site for their colony.

[Illustration: PORT ROYAL  (From Champlain's diagram)]

Zigzagging along the coast of Maine, Captain Fleury cast anchor off
Mount Desert at Frenchman's Bay.  A cross was erected, mass celebrated,
and four white tents pitched to house the people; but the clash between
civil and religious authority broke out again.  The sailors would not
obey the priests.  Fleury feared mutiny.  Saussaye, the commander, lost
his head, and disorder was ripening to disaster when there appeared
over the sea the peak of a sail,--a sail topped by a little red ensign,
the {43} flag of the English, who claimed all this coast.  And the sail
was succeeded by decks with sixty mariners, and hulls through whose
ports bristled fourteen cannon.  The newcomer was Samuel Argall of
Virginia, whom the Indians had told of the French, now bearing down
full sail, cannon leveled, to expel these aliens from the domain of
England's King.  Drums were beating, trumpets blowing, fifes
shrieking--there was no mistaking the purpose of the English ship.
Saussaye, the French commander, dashed for hiding in the woods.
Captain Fleury screamed for some one, every one, any one, "to
fire--fire"; but the French sailors had imitated their commander and
fled to the woods, while the poor Jesuit, Gilbert du Thet, fell
weltering in blood from an English cannonade that swept the French
decks bare and set all sails in flame.  In the twinkling of an eye,
Argall had captured men and craft.  Fifteen of the French prisoners he
set adrift in open boat, on the chance of their joining the French
fishing fleet off Cape Breton.  They were ultimately carried to St.
Malo.  {44} The rest of the prisoners, including Father Biard, he took
back to Virginia, where the commission held from the French King
assured them honorable treatment in time of peace; but Argall was
promptly sent north again with his prisoners, and three frigates to lay
waste every vestige of French settlement from Maine to St. John.  Mount
Desert, the ruins of Ste. Croix, the fortress beloved by Poutrincourt
at Port Royal, the ripening wheat of Annapolis Basin--all fed the
flames of Argall's zeal; and young Biencourt's wood runners, watching
from the forests the destruction of all their hopes, the ruin of all
their plans, ardently begged their young commander to parley with
Argall that they might obtain the Jesuit Biard and hang him to the
highest tree.  To _his_ coming they attributed all the woes.  It was as
easy for them to believe that the Jesuit had piloted the English
destroyer to Port Royal, as it had been ten years before for the
Catholics to accuse the Huguenots of murdering the lost priest Aubry;
and there was probably as much truth in one charge as the other.

So fell Port Royal; but out round the ruins of Port Royal, where the
little river runs down to the sea past Goat Island, young Biencourt and
his followers took to the woods--the first of that race of bush lopers,
half savages, half noblemen, to render France such glorious service in
the New World.

When De Monts lost the monopoly of furs in Acadia, Champlain, the court
geographer, had gone home from Port Royal to France.  De Monts now
succeeds in obtaining a fresh monopoly for one year on the St.
Lawrence, and sends out two ships in 1608 under his old friends,
Pontgravé, who is to attend to the bartering, Champlain, who is to
explore.  With them come some of the colonists from Port Royal, among
others Louis Hebert, the chemist, first colonist to become farmer at
Quebec, and Abraham Martin, whose name was given to the famous plains
where Wolfe and Montcalm later fought.

Pontgravé arrived at the rendezvous of Tadoussac early in June.  Here
he found Basque fishermen engaged in the peltry {45} traffic with
Indians from Labrador.  When Pontgravé read his commission interdicting
all ships but those of De Monts from trade, the Basques poured a
fusillade of musketry across his decks, killed one man, wounded two,
then boarded his vessel and trundled his cannon ashore.  So much for
royal commissions and monopoly!

[Illustration: TADOUSSAC (From Champlain's map)]

At this stage came Champlain on the second boat.  Two vessels were
overstrong for the Basques.  They quickly came to terms and decamped.
Champlain steered his tiny craft on up the silver flood of the St.
Lawrence to that Cape Diamond where Cartier's men had gathered
worthless stones.  Between the high cliff and the river front, not far
from the market place of Quebec City to-day, workmen began clearing the
woods for the site of the French habitation.  The little fort was
palisaded, of course, with a moat outside and cannon commanding the
river.  The walls were loopholed for musketry; and inside ran a gallery
to serve as lookout and defense.  Houses, barracks, garden, and
fresh-water supply completed the fort.  One day, as Champlain {46}
worked in his garden, a colonist begged to speak with him.  Champlain
stepped into the woods.  The man then blurted out how a conspiracy was
on foot, instigated by the Basques, to assassinate Champlain, seize the
fort, and stab any man who dared to resist.  One of Pontgravé's small
boats lay at anchor.  Champlain sent for the pilot, told him the story
of the plot, gave him two bottles of wine, and bade him invite the
ringleaders on board that night to drink.  The ruse worked.  The
ringleaders were handcuffed, the other colonists awakened in the fort
and told that the plot had been crushed.  The body of Duval, the chief
plotter, in pay of the Basques, swung as warning from a gibbet; and his
head was exposed on a pike to the birds of the air.  Though Pontgravé
left a garrison of twenty-eight when he sailed for France, less than a
dozen men had survived the plague of scurvy when the ships came back to
Champlain in 1609.

Champlain's part had been to explore.  Now that his fort was built, he
planned to do this by allying himself with the Indians, who came down
to trade at Quebec.  These were the Hurons and Montaignais, the former
from the Ottawa, the latter from Labrador.  Both waged ceaseless war on
the Iroquois south of the St. Lawrence.  After bartering their furs for
weapons from the traders, the allied tribes would set out on the
warpath against the Iroquois.  In June, Champlain and eleven white men
accompanied the roving warriors.

The way led from the St. Lawrence south, up the River Richelieu.
Champlain's boat was a ponderous craft; and when the shiver of the
sparkling rapids came with a roar through the dank forest, the heavy
boat had to be sent back to Quebec.  Adopting the light birch canoe of
the Indian, Champlain went on, accompanied by only two white men.  Of
Indians, there were twenty-four canoes with sixty warriors.  For the
first part of the voyage night was made hideous by the grotesque war
dances of the braves lashing themselves to fury by scalp raids in
pantomime, or by the medicine men holding solemn converse with the
demons of earth; the tent poles of the medicine lodge rocked as if by
wind, while eldritch howls predicted victory.  {47} Then the long line
of silent canoes had spread out on that upland lake named after
Champlain, the heavily forested Adirondacks breaking the sky line on
one side, the Green Mountains rolling away on the other.  Caution now
marked all advance.  The Indians paddled only at night, withdrawing to
the wooded shore through the morning mist to hide in the undergrowth
for the day.  This was the land of the Iroquois.

[Illustration: DEFEAT OF THE IROQUOIS  (From Champlain's drawing)]

On July 29, as the invaders were stealing silently along the west shore
near Crown Point at night about ten o'clock, there were seen by the
starlight, coming over the water with that peculiar galloping motion of
paddlers dipping together, the Iroquois war canoes.  Each side
recognized the other, and the woods rang with shouts; but gathering
clouds and the mist rising from the river screened the foes from mutual
attack, though the night echoed to shout and countershout and challenge
and abuse.  Through the half light Champlain could see that the
Iroquois were working like beavers erecting a barricade of logs.  The
assailants kept to their canoes under cover of bull-hide shields till
daylight, when Champlain buckled on his armor--breastplate, helmet,
thigh pieces--and landing, advanced.  There were not less than two
hundred Iroquois.  Outnumbering the Hurons three times over, they
uttered a jubilant whoop and {48} came on at a rush.  Champlain and his
two white men took aim.  The foremost chiefs dropped in their tracks.
Terrified by "the sticks that thundered and spat fire," the Iroquois
fell back in amaze, halted, then fled.  The victory was complete; but
it left as a legacy to New France the undying enmity of the Iroquois.

When Champlain came out from France in 1610, he would have repeated the
raid; but a fight with invading Iroquois at the mouth of the Richelieu
delayed him, and the expiration of De Monts' monopoly took him back to

In 1611 trade was free to all comers.  Fur traders flocked to the St.
Lawrence like birds of passage.  The only way to secure furs for De
Monts was to go higher up the river beyond Quebec; and ascending to
Montreal, Champlain built a factory called Place Royale, with a wall of
bricks to resist the ice jam.  This was the third French fort Champlain
helped to found in Canada.

Presently, on his tracks to Montreal, came a flock of free traders.
When the Hurons come shooting down the foamy rapids--here, a pole-shove
to avoid splitting canoes on a rock in mid-rush; there, a dexterous
whirl from the trough of a back wash--the fur traders fire off their
guns in welcome.  The Hurons are suspicious.  What means it, these
white men, coming in such numbers, firing off their "sticks that
thunder"?  At midnight they come stealthily to Champlain's lodge to
complain.  Peltries and canoes, the Indians transfer themselves above
the rapids, and later conduct Champlain down those same white
whirlpools to the uneasy amaze of the explorer.

It is clear to Champlain he must obtain royal patronage to stem the
boldness of these free traders.  In France he obtains the favor of the
Bourbons; and he obtains it more generously because the world of Paris
has gone agog about a fabulous tale that sets the court by the ears.
From the first Champlain has encouraged young Frenchmen to winter with
the Indian hunters and learn the languages.  Brulé is with them now.
Nicholas Vignau has just come back from the Ottawa with a fairy story
of a marvelous voyage he has made with the Indians through {49} the
forests to the Sea of the North--the sea where Henry Hudson, the
Englishman, had perished.  As the romance gains the ear of the public,
the young man waxes eloquent in detail, and tells of the number of
Englishmen living there.  Champlain is ordered to follow this
exploration up.

May, 1613, he is back at Montreal, opposite that island named St.
Helen, after the frail girl who became his wife, preparing to ascend
the Ottawa with four white men--among them Vignau.  What Vignau's
sensations were, one may guess.  The vain youth had not meant his love
of notoriety to carry him so far; and he must have known that every
foot of the way led him nearer detection; but the liar is always a
gambler with chance.  Mishap, bad weather, Indian war--might drive
Champlain back.  Vignau assumed bold face.

The path followed was that river trail up the Ottawa which was to
become the highway of empire's westward march for two and a half
centuries.  Mount Royal is left to the rear as the voyageurs traverse
the Indian trail through the forests along the rapids to that launching
place named after the patron saint of French voyageur--Ste. Anne's.
The river widens into the silver expanse of Two Mountains Lake, rimmed
to the sky line by the vernal hills, with a silence and solitude over
all, as when sunlight first fell on face of man.  Here the eagle utters
a lonely scream from the top of some blasted pine; there a covey of
ducks, catching sight of the coming canoes, dive to bottom, only to
reappear a gunshot away.  Where the voyageurs land for their nooning,
or camp at nightfall, or pause to gum the splits in their birch canoes,
the forest in the full flush of spring verdure is a fairy woods.
Against the elms and the maples leafing out in airy tracery that
reveals the branches bronze among the budding green, stand the silver
birches, and the somber hemlocks, and the resinous pines.  Upbursting
from the mold below is another miniature forest--a forest of ferns
putting out the hairy fronds that in another month will be above the
height of a man.  Overhead, like a flame of fire, flashes the scarlet
tanager with his querulous call; or the oriole flits from branch to
branch, {50} fluting his springtime notes; or the yellow warbler
balances on topmost spray to sing his crisp love song on the long
journey north to nest on Hudson Bay.  And over all and in all,
intangible as light, intoxicating as wine, is the tang of the clear,
unsullied, crystal air, setting the blood coursing with new life.
Little wonder that Brulé, and Vignau, and other young men whom
Champlain sent to the woods to learn wood lore, became so enamored of
the life that they never returned to civilization.

Presently the sibilant rush of waters forewarns rapids.  Indians and
voyageurs debark, invert canoes on their shoulders, packs on back with
straps across foreheads, and amble away over the portages at that
voyageurs' dog-trot which is half walk, half run.  So the rapids of
Carillon and Long Sault are ascended.  Night time is passed on some
sandy shore on a bed under the stars, or under the canoes turned upside
down.  Tents are erected only for the commander, Champlain; and at day
dawn, while the tips of the trees are touched with light and the
morning mist is smoking up from the river shot with gold, canoes are
again on the water and paddle blades tossing the waves behind.

The Laurentian Hills now roll from the river in purpling folds like
fields of heather.  The Gatineau is passed, winding in on the right
through dense forests.  On the left, flowing through the rolling sand
hills, and joining the main river just where the waters fall over a
precipice in a cataract of spray, is the Rideau River with its famous
falls resembling the white folds of a wind-blown curtain.  Then the
voyageurs have swept round that wooded cliff known as Parliament Hill,
jutting out in the river, and there breaks on view a wall of water
hurtling down in shimmering floods at the Chaudière Falls.  The high
cliff to the left and countercurrent from the falls swirl the canoes
over on the right side to the sandy flats where the lumber piles to-day
defile the river.  Here boats are once more hauled up for portage--a
long portage, nine miles, all the way to the modern town of Aylmer,
where the river becomes wide as a lake, Lake Du Chêne of the oak
forests.  Here camp for the night was made, and leaks in the canoes
mended with resin, round fires gleaming red as an angry eye across the
{51} darkening waters, while the prowling wild cats and lynx, which
later gave such good hunting in these forests that the adjoining rapids
became known as the Chats, sent their unearthly screams shivering
through the darkness.

Somewhere near Allumette Isle, Champlain came to an Indian settlement
of the Ottawa tribe.  He camped to ask for guides to go on.  Old Chief
Tessouat holds solemn powwow, passing the peace pipe round from hand to
hand in silence, before the warriors rise to answer Champlain.  Then
with the pompous gravity of Abraham dickering with the desert tribes,
they warn Champlain it is unsafe to go farther.  Beyond the Ottawa is
the Nipissing, where dwell the Sorcerer Indians--a treacherous people.
Beyond the Nipissing is the great Fresh Water Sea of the Hurons.  They
will grant Champlain canoes, but warn him against the trip.  Later the
interpreter comes with word they have changed their minds.  Champlain
must _not_ go on.  It is too dangerous.  Attack would involve war.

"What," demanded Champlain, rushing into the midst of the council tent,
"not go?  Why, my young man, here"--pointing to Vignau--"has gone to
that country and found no danger."

What Vignau thought at that stage is not told.  The Indians turned on
him in fury.

"Nicholas, did _you_ say _you_ had visited the Nipissings?"

Vignau hems and haws, and stammers, "Yes."

"Liar," roars the chief.  "You slept here every night, and if you went
to the Nipissings, you went in a dream."  Then to Champlain, "Let him
be tortured."

Champlain took the fellow to his own tent.  Vignau reiterated his
story.  Champlain took him back to the council.  The Indians jeered his
answers and tore the story he told to tatters, showing Champlain how
utterly wrong Vignau's descriptions were.

That night, on promise of forgiveness, Vignau fell on his knees and
confessed the imposture to Champlain.  When the fur canoes came down
the Ottawa to trade at Montreal, Champlain accompanied them to the St.
Lawrence, and sailed for France.  His exploration had been an
ignominious failure.

{52} Champlain was ever Knight of the Cross as well as explorer.  He
longed with the zeal of a missionary to reclaim the Indians from
savagery, and at last raised funds in France to pay the expense of
bringing four or five Recollets--a branch of the Franciscan Friars--to
Quebec in May of 1615.  With the peaked hood thrown back, the gray garb
roped in at the waist, the bare feet protected only by heavy sandals,
the Recollets landed at Quebec, and with cannon booming, white men all
on bended knee, held service before the amazed savages.

Of the Recollets, it was agreed that Joseph le Caron should go west to
the Hurons of the Sweet Water Sea.  Accompanied by a dozen Frenchmen,
the friar ascended the Ottawa in July, passed that Allumette Island
where Vignau's lie had been confessed, and proceeded westward to the
land of the Hurons.  Nine days later Champlain followed with two
canoes, ten Indians, and Etienne Brulé, his interpreter.  In order to
hold the ever-lasting loyalty of the Hurons and Algonquins in Canada,
Champlain had pledged them that the French would join their twenty-five
hundred warriors in a great invasion of the Iroquois to the south.  It
was to be a war not of aggression but of defense; for the Five Nations
of the Iroquois in New York state had harried the Canadian tribes like
wolves raiding a sheep pen.  No Frenchman cultivating his farm patch on
the St. Lawrence was safe from ambuscade; no hunter afield secure from
a chance war party.

Any tourist crossing Canada to-day can trace Champlain's voyage.  Where
the rolling tide of the Ottawa forks at Mattawa, there comes in on the
west side, through dense forests and cedar swamps, a river
amber-colored with the wood-mold of centuries.  This is the Mattawa.
Up the Mattawa Champlain pushed his canoes westward, up the shining
flood of the river yellow as gold where the waters shallow above the
pebble bottom.  Then the gravel grated keels.  The shallows became
weed-grown swamps that entangled the paddles and hid voyageur from
voyageur in reeds the height of a man; and presently a portage over
rocks slippery as ice leads to a stream flowing westward, opening {53}
on a low-lying, clay-colored lake--the country of the Nipissings, with
whom Champlain pauses to feast and hear tales of witchcraft and demon
lore, that gave them the name of Sorcerers.

In a few sleeps--they tell him--he will reach the Sweet Water Sea.  The
news is welcome; for the voyageurs are down to short rations, and
launch eagerly westward on the stream draining Nipissing Lake--French
River.  This is a tricky little stream in whose sands lie buried the
bodies of countless French voyageurs.  It is more dangerous going
_with_ rapids than _against_ them; for the hastening current is
sometimes an undertow, which sweeps the canoes into the rapids before
the roar of the waterfall has given warning.  And the country is barren
of game.

As they cross the portages, Champlain's men are glad to snatch at the
raspberry and cranberry bushes for food; and their night-time meal is
dependent on chance fishing.  Indian hunters are met,--three hundred of
them,--the Staring Hairs, so named from the upright posture of their
headdress tipped by an eagle quill; and again Champlain is told he is
very near the Inland Sea.

It comes as discoveries nearly always come--his finding of the Great
Lakes; for though Joseph Le Caron, the missionary, had passed this way
ten days ago, the zealous priest never paused to explore and map the
region.  You are paddling down the brown, forest-shadowed waters--long
lanes of water like canals through walls of trees silent as sentinels.
Suddenly a change almost imperceptible comes.  Instead of the earthy
smell of the forest mold in your nostrils is the clear tang of
sun-bathed, water-washed rocks; and the sky begins to swim, to lose
itself at the horizon.  There is no sudden bursting of a sea on your
view.  The river begins to coil in and out among islands.  The amber
waters have become sheeted silver.  You wind from island to island,
islands of pink granite, islands with no tree but one lone blasted
pine, islands that are in themselves forests.  There is no end to these
islands.  They are not in hundreds; they are in thousands.  Then you
see the spray breaking over the reefs, and there is its sky line.  You
are not on a river at all.  You are on an inland sea.  You have been on
the lake for hours.  One {54} can guess how Champlain's men scrambled
from island to island, and fished for the rock bass above the deep
pools, and ran along the water line of wave-dashed reefs, wondering
vaguely if the wind wash were the ocean tide of the Western Sea.

But Champlain's Huron guides had not come to find a Western Sea.  With
the quick choppy stroke of the Indian paddler they were conveying him
down that eastern shore of Lake Huron now known as Georgian Bay, from
French River to Parry Sound and Midland and Penetang.  Where these
little towns to-day stand on the hillsides was a howling wilderness of
forest, with never a footprint but the zigzagging trail of the Indians
back from Georgian Bay to what is now Lake Simcoe.

Between these two shores lay the stamping grounds of the great Huron
tribe.  How numerous were they?  Records differ.  Certainly at no time
more numerous than thirty thousand souls all told, including children.
Though they yearly came to Montreal for trade and war, the Hurons were
sedentary, living in the long houses of bark inclosed by triple
palisades, such as Cartier had seen at Hochelaga almost a century

Champlain followed his supple guides along the wind-fallen forest trail
to the Huron villages.  Here he found the missionary.  One can guess
how the souls of these two heroes burned as the deep solemn chant of
the _Te Deum_ for the first time rolled through the forests of Lake

But now Champlain must to business; and his business is war.  Brulé and
twelve Indians are sent like the carriers of the fiery cross in the
Highlands of Scotland to rally tribes of the Susquehanna to join the
Hurons against the Iroquois.  A wild war dance is held with mystic
rites in the lodges of the Hurons; and the braves set out with
Champlain from Lake Simcoe for Lake Ontario by way of Trent River.  As
they near what is now New York state, buckskin is flung aside, the
naked bodies painted and greased, and the trail shunned for the
pathless woods off the beaten track where the Indians glide like beasts
of prey through the frost-tinted forest.


[Illustration: THE ONONDAGA FORT  (From Champlain's diagram)]

October 9 they suddenly come on some Onondagas fishing, and they begin
torturing their captives by cutting off a girl's finger, when Champlain
commands them to desist.  Presently the forest opens to a farm clearing
where the Iroquois are harvesting their corn.  Spite of all Champlain
could do, the wild Hurons uttered their war cry and rushed the field,
but the Iroquois turned on the rabble and drove them back to the woods.
Champlain was furious.  They should have waited for Brulé to come with
their allies; and the foolish attack had only served to forewarn the
enemy.  He frankly told the Hurons if they were going to fight under
_his_ command, they must fight as white men fight; and he set them to
building a platform from which marksmen could shoot over the walls of
the Iroquois town.  But the admonitions {56} fell on frenzied ears.  No
sooner was the command to advance given than the Hurons broke from
cover like maniacs, easy marks for the javelin throwers inside the
walls, and hurled themselves against the Iroquois palisades in blind
fury, making more din with yelling than woe with shots.  Boiling water
poured from the galleries inside drove the braves back from the walls,
and the poisoned barb of the Iroquois arrows pursued their flight.  A
score fell wounded, among them Champlain with an arrow in his knee-cap.
The flight became panic fast and furious, with the wounded carried on
wicker stretchers whose every jolt added agony to pain.

[Illustration: VIEW OF QUEBEC  (From Champlain's plan)]

As for Brulé, he arrived with the allies only to find that the Hurons
had fled, and here was he, alone in a hostile land, with Iroquois
warriors rampant as molested wasps.  In the swift retreat off the trail
Brulé lost his way.  He was without food {57} or powder, and had to
choose between starvation or surrender to the Iroquois.  Throwing down
his weapons, he gave himself up to what he knew would be certain
torture.  Had he winced or whined as they tore the nails from his
fingers and the hair from his head, the Iroquois would probably have
brained him on the spot for a poltroon; but the young man, bound to a
stake, pointed to a gathering storm as sign of Heaven's displeasure.
The high spirit pleased the Iroquois.  They unbound him and took him
with them in their wanderings for three years.

The Hurons had promised to convey Champlain back down the St. Lawrence
to Quebec, but the defeat had caused loss of prestige.  The man "with
the stick that thundered" was no more invulnerable to wounds than they.
They forgot their promises and invented excuses for not proceeding to
Quebec.  Champlain wintered with the hunters somewhere north of Lake
Ontario, and came down the Ottawa with the fur canoes the next summer.
He was received at Quebec as one risen from the dead.

While Champlain had been exploring, New France had not prospered as a
colony.  Royal patron after royal patron sold the monopoly to fresh
hands, and each new master appointed Champlain viceroy.  The fur trade
merchants could pay forty per cent dividends, but could do nothing to
advance settlement.  Less than one hundred people made up the
population of New France; and these were torn asunder by jealousies.
Huguenot and Catholic were opposed; and when three Jesuits came to
Quebec, Jesuits and Recollets distrusted each other.

Madam Champlain joined her husband at Quebec, in 1620, to stay for four
years, and that same year Champlain built himself a new habitation--the
famous Castle of St. Louis on the cliff above the first dwelling.
Louis Hebert, the apothecary of Port Royal, is now a farmer close to
the Castle of Quebec; and the wife of Abraham Martin has given birth to
the first white child born in New France.

Now came a revolutionary change.  Cardinal Richelieu was virtual ruler
of France.  He quickly realized that the monopolists {58} were sucking
the lifeblood of the colony in furs and were giving nothing in return
to the country.  In 1627, under the great cardinal's patronage, the
Company of One Hundred Associates was formed.  In this company any of
the seaport traders could buy shares.  Indeed, they were promised
patent of nobility if they did buy shares.  Exclusive monopoly of furs
was given to the company from Florida to Labrador.  In return the
Associates were to send two ships yearly to Canada.  Before 1643 they
were to bring out four thousand colonists, support them for three
years, and give them land.  In each settlement were to be supported
three priests; and, to prevent discord, Huguenots were to be banished
from New France.

To Champlain it must have seemed as if the ambition of his life were to
be realized.  Just when the sky seemed clearest the bolt fell.

Early in April, 1628, the Associates had dispatched colonists and
stores for Quebec; but war had broken out between France and England.
Gervais Kirke, an English Huguenot of Dieppe, France, who had been put
under the ban by Cardinal Richelieu, had rallied the merchants of
London to fit out privateers to wage war on New France.  The vessels
were commanded by the three sons, Thomas, Louis, and David; and to the
Kirkes rallied many Huguenots banished from France.

Quebec was hourly looking for the annual ships, when one morning in
July two men rushed breathless through the woods and up the steep rock
to Castle St. Louis with word that an English fleet of six frigates lay
in hiding at Tadoussac, ready to pounce on the French!  Later came
other messengers--Indians, fishermen, traders--confirming the terrible
news.  Then a Basque fisherman arrives with a demand, from Kirke for
the keys to the fort.  Though there is no food inside the walls, less
than fifty pounds of ammunition in the storehouse, and not enough men
to man the guns, Champlain hopes against hope, and sends the Basque
fisherman back with suave regrets that he cannot comply with Monsieur
Kirke's polite request.  Quebec's one chance lay in the hope that the
French vessels might {59} slip past the English frigates by night.
Days wore on to weeks, weeks to months, and a thousand rumors filled
the air; but no ships came.  The people of Quebec were now reduced to
diet of nuts and corn.  Then came Indian runners with word that the
French ships had been waylaid, boarded, scuttled, and sunk.  Loaded to
the water line with booty, the English privateers had gone home.

[Illustration: QUEBEC  (From Champlain's map)]

For that winter Quebec lived on such food as the Indians brought in
from the woods.  By the summer of 1629 men, women, and children were
grubbing for roots, fishing for food, ranging the rocks for berries.
There are times when the only thing to do is--do nothing; and it is
probably the hardest task a brave man ever has.  When the English fleet
came back in July Champlain had a ragamuffin, half-starved retinue of
precisely sixteen men.  Yet he haggled for such terms that the English
promised to convey the prisoners to France.  On July 20, for the first
time in history, the red flag of England blew to the winds above the
heights of Quebec.

But New France was only a pawn to the gamesters of French and English
diplomacy.  Peace was proclaimed; and for the {60} sake of receiving
$200,000 as dowry due his French wife, Charles of England restored to
France the half continent which the Kirkes had captured, David Kirke
receiving the paltry honor of a title as compensation for the loss.
Champlain was back in Quebec by 1633; but his course had run.  Between
Christmas eve and Christmas morning, in 1635, the brave Soldier of the
Cross, the first knight of the Canadian wildwoods, passed from the
sphere of earthly life--a life without a stain, whether among the
intriguing courtiers of Paris or in the midst of naked license in the
Indian camp.



FROM 1635 TO 1666

Frays between La Tour and Charnisay--Madame La Tour defends the
fort--Charnisay's treachery

When Port Royal fell before Argall, it will be remembered, young
Biencourt took to the woods with his French bush lopers and Indian
followers of Nova Scotia.  The farms and fort of Annapolis Basin
granted to his father by special patents lay in ruins.  Familiar with
the woods as the English buccaneer, who had destroyed the fort, was
with his ship's cabin, Biencourt withdrew to the southwest corner of
Nova Scotia, where he built a rude stronghold of logs and slabs near
the modern Cape Sable.  Here he could keep in touch with the French
fishermen off Cape Breton, and also traffic with the Indians of the

With Biencourt was a young man of his own age, boon comrade, kindred
spirit, who had come to Port Royal a boy of fourteen, in 1606, in the
gay days of Marc L'Escarbot--Charles de La Tour.  Sea rovers, bush
lopers, these two could bid defiance to English raiders.  Whether
Biencourt died in 1623 or went home to France is unknown; but he deeded
over to his friend, Charles de La Tour, all possessions in Acadia.

And now England again comes on the scene.  By virtue of Cabot's
discovery and Argall's conquest, the King of England, in 1621, grants
to Sir William Alexander, the Earl of Stirling, all of Acadia, renamed
Nova Scotia--New Scotland.  By way of encouraging emigration, the order
of Nova Scotia Baronets is created, a title being granted to those who
subscribe to the colonization company.

Sir William Alexander's colonists shun the French bush lopers under
Charles de La Tour down at Fort St. Louis on Cape Sable.  The seventy
Scotch colonists go on up the Annapolis Basin and build their fort four
miles from old Port Royal.  How did they pass the pioneer years--these
Scotch retainers of the {62} Nova Scotia Baronets?  Report among the
French fishing fleet says thirty died of scurvy; but of definite
information not a vestige remains.  The annals of these colonists are
as completely lost to history as the annals of the lost Roanoke colony
in Virginia.

Under the same English patent Lord Ochiltree lands English colonists in
Cape Breton, the grand summer rendezvous of the French fishermen; but
two can play at Argall's game of raids.  French seamen swoop down on
Ochiltree's colony, capture fifty, destroy the settlement, and run up
the white flag of France in place of the red standard of England.


Charles de La Tour with his Huguenots hides safely ensconced behind his
slab palisades with the swarthy faces of half a hundred Indian
retainers lighted up by the huge logs at blaze on the hearth.  Charles
de La Tour takes counsel with himself.  English at Port Royal, English
at Cape Breton, English on the mainland at Boston, English ships
passing and repassing his lone lodge in the wilderness, he will be
safer, will Charles de La Tour, with wider distance between himself and
the foe; and he will take more peltries where there are fewer traders.
Still keeping his fort in Nova Scotia, La Tour goes across Fundy Bay
and builds him a second, stronger fort on St. John River, New
Brunswick, near where Carleton town stands to-day.

Then two things happened that upset all plans.

{63} The Hundred Associates are given _all_ Canada--Quebec and Acadia.
Founded by Cardinal Richelieu, the Hundred Associates are violently
Catholic, violently anti-Protestant.  Charles de La Tour need expect no
favors, if indeed the grant that he holds from Biencourt be not
assailed.  Double reason for moving the most of his possessions across
Fundy Bay to St. John River.

Then the Englishmen, under the Kirke brothers, capture Quebec.  As luck
or ill luck will have it, among the French captured from the French
ships of the Hundred Associates down at Tadoussac, is Claude de La
Tour, the father of Charles.  Claude de La Tour was a Protestant.  This
and his courtly manner and his noble birth commended him to the English
court.  What had France done for Claude de La Tour?  Placed him under
the ban on account of his religion.

Claude de La Tour promptly became a British subject, received the title
Baronet of Nova Scotia with enormous grants of land on St. John River,
New Brunswick, married an English lady in waiting to the Queen, and
sailed with three men-of-war for Nova Scotia to win over his son
Charles.  No writer like Marc Lescarbot was present to describe the
meeting between father and son; but one can guess the stormy
scene,--the war between love of country and love of father, the guns of
the father's vessels pointing at the son's fort, the guns of the son's
fort pointing at the father's vessels.  The father's arguments were
strong.  What had France done for the La Tours?  By siding with England
they would receive safe asylum in case of persecution and enormous
grants of land on St. John River.  But the son's arguments were
stronger.  The father must know from his English bride--maid in waiting
to the English Queen--that England had no intentions of keeping her
newly captured possessions in Canada, but had already decided to trade
them back to France for a dowry to the English Queen.  If Canada were
given back to France, what were English grants in New Brunswick worth?
"If those who sent you think me capable of betraying my country even at
the prayer of my father, they are mightily mistaken," thundered the
young man, ordering his gunners to their places.  {64} "I don't
purchase honors by crime!  I don't undervalue the offer of England's
King; but the King of France is just as able to reward me!  The King of
France has confided the defense of Acadia to me; and I'll defend it to
my last breath."

Stung by his son's rebuke, the elder La Tour retired to his ship, wrote
one more unavailing appeal, then landed his mariners to rush the fort.
But the rough bush lopers inside the palisades were expert marksmen.
Their raking cross fire kept the English at a distance, and the father
could neither drive nor coax his men to the sticking point of courage
to scale palisades in such an unnatural war.  Claude de La Tour was now
in an unenviable plight.  He dare not go back to France a traitor.  He
could not go back to England, having failed to win the day.  The son
built him a dwelling outside the fort; and there this famous courtier
of two great nations, with his noble wife, retired to pass the end of
his days in a wildwood wilderness far enough from the gaudy tinsel of
courts.  The fate of both husband and wife is unknown.


Charles de La Tour's predictions were soon verified.  The Treaty of
St.-Germain-en-Laye, in 1632, gave back all Canada to France; and the
young man's loyalty was rewarded by the French King confirming the
father's English patent to the lands of St. John River, New Brunswick.
Perhaps he expected more.  He certainly wanted to be governor of
Acadia, and may have looked for fresh title to Port Royal, which
Biencourt had deeded {65} to him.  His ambition was embittered.
Cardinal Richelieu of the Hundred Associates had his own favorites to
look after.  Acadia is divided into three provinces.  Over all as
governor is Isaac Razilli, chief of the Hundred Associates.  La Tour
holds St. John.  One St. Denys is given Cape Breton; and Port Royal,
the best province of all, falls to Sieur d'Aulnay de Charnisay, friend
and relative of Richelieu; and when Razilli dies in 1635, Charnisay,
with his strong influence at court, easily secures the dead man's
patents with all land grants attached.  Charnisay becomes governor of

For a second time La Tour is thwarted.  Things are turning out as his
father had foretold.  Who began the border warfare matters little.
Whether Charnisay as lord of all Acadia first ordered La Tour to
surrender St. John, or La Tour, holding his grant from Biencourt to
Port Royal, ordered Charnisay to give up Annapolis Basin, war had
begun,--such border warfare as has its parallel only in the raids of
rival barons in the Middle Ages.  Did La Tour's vessels laden with furs
slip out from St. John River across Fundy Bay bound for France?  There
lay at Cape Sable and Sable Island Charnisay's freebooters, Charnisay's
wreckers, ready to board the ship or lure her a wreck on Sable Island
reefs by false lights.  It is unsafe to accept as facts the charges and
countercharges made by these two enemies; but from independent sources
it seems fairly certain that Charnisay, unknown to Cardinal Richelieu,
was a bit of a freebooter and wrecker; for his men made a regular
business of waylaying English ships from Boston, Dutch ships from New
York, as they passed Sable Island; and Charnisay's name became
cordially hated by the Protestant colonies of New England.  La Tour,
being Huguenot, could count on firm friends in Boston.

Countless legends cling to Fundy Bay of the forays between these two.
In 1640 La Tour and his wife, cruising past Annapolis Basin in their
fur ships, rashly entered and attacked Port Royal.  Their ship was run
aground by Charnisay's vessels and captured; but the friars persuaded
the victor to set La Tour and his wife free, pending an appeal to
France.  France, of {66} course, decided in favor of Charnisay, who was
of royal blood, a relative of Richelieu's, in high favor with the
court.  La Tour's patent was revoked and he was ordered to surrender
his fort on the St. John.


In answer, La Tour loaded his cannon, locked the fort gates, and bade
defiance to Charnisay.  Charnisay sails across Fundy Bay in June, 1643,
with a fleet of four vessels and five hundred men to bombard the fort.
La Tour was without provisions, though his store ship from France lay
in hiding outside, blocked from entering by Charnisay's fleet.  Days
passed.  Resistance was hopeless.  On one side lay the impenetrable
forest; on the other, Charnisay's fleet.  On the night of June 12th, La
Tour and his wife slipped from a little sally port in the dark, ran
along the shore, and, evading spies, succeeded in rowing out to the
store ship.  Ebb tide carried them far from the four men-of-war
anchored fast in front of the abandoned fort.  Then sails out, the
store ship fled for Boston, where La Tour and his wife appealed for aid.

The Puritans of Boston had qualms of conscience about interfering in
this French quarrel; but they did not forget that Charnisay's wreckers
had stripped their merchant ships come to grief on the reefs of Sable
Island.  La Tour gave the Boston merchants a mortgage on all his
belongings at St. John, and in return obtained four vessels, fifty
mariners, ninety-two soldiers, {67} thirty-eight cannon.  With this
fleet he swooped down on Fundy Bay in July.  Charnisay's vessels lay
before Fort St. John, where the stubborn little garrison still held
out, when La Tour came down on him like an enraged eagle.  Charnisay's
fur ships were boarded, scuttled, and sunk, while the commander himself
fled in terror for Port Royal.  All sails pressed, La Tour pursued
right into Annapolis Basin, wounding seven of the enemy, killing three,
taking one prisoner.  Charnisay's one remaining vessel grounded in the
river.  A fight took place near the site of the mill which Poutrincourt
had built long ago, but Charnisay succeeded in gaining the shelter of
Port Royal, where his cannon soon compelled La Tour to fly from
Annapolis Basin.  Charnisay found it safer to pass that winter in
France, and La Tour gathered in all the peltry traffic of the bay.

Early in 1644 Charnisay returned and sent a friar to secure the
neutrality of the New Englanders.  All summer negotiations dragged on
between Boston and Port Royal, La Tour meanwhile scouring land and sea
unchecked, packing his fort with peltries.  Finally, Charnisay promised
to desist from all fur trade along the coast if the New England
colonies would remain neutral; and the colonies promised not to aid La
Tour.  La Tour was now outlawed by the French government, and Charnisay
had actually induced New England to promise not to convey either La
Tour or his wife to or from Bay of Fundy in English boats.

La Tour chanced to be absent from his fort in 1645.  Like a bird of
prey Charnisay swooped on St. John River; but he had not reckoned on
Madame La Tour--Frances Marie Jacqueline.  With the courage and agility
of a trained soldier, she commanded her little garrison of fifty and
returned the raider's cannonade with a fury that sent Charnisay limping
back to Port Royal with splintered decks, twenty mangled corpses
jumbled aft, and a dozen men wounded to the death lying in the hold.

With all the power of France at his back Charnisay had been defeated by
a woman,--the Huguenot wife of an outlaw!  He must reduce La Tour or
stand discredited before the world.  {68} Furious beyond words, he
hastened to France to prepare an overwhelming armament.

But Madame La Tour was not idle.  She, too, hastened across the
Atlantic to solicit aid in London.  One can imagine how Charnisay
gnashed his teeth.  Here, at last, was his chance.  The Boston vessels
were not to convey the La Tours back to Acadia.  Like a hawk Charnisay
cruised the sea for the outcoming ship with its fair passenger; but
Madame La Tour had made a cast-iron agreement with the master of the
sailing vessel to bring her direct to Boston.  Instead of this, the
vessel cruised the St. Lawrence, trading with the Indians, and so
delayed the aid coming to La Tour; but when Charnisay's searchers came
on board off Sable Island, Madame La Tour was hidden among the freight
in the hold.  For the delay she sued the sailing master in Boston and
obtained a judgment of 2000 pounds; and when he failed to pay, had his
cargo seized and sold, and with the proceeds equipped three vessels to
aid her outlawed husband.  So the whole of 1646 passed, each side
girding itself for the final fray.

April, 1647, spies brought word to Charnisay that La Tour was absent
from his fort.  Waiting not a moment, Charnisay hurried ships,
soldiers, cannon across the bay.  Inside La Tour's fort was no
confusion.  Madame La Tour had ordered every man to his place.  Day and
night for three days the siege lasted, Charnisay's men closing in on
the palisades so near they could bandy words with the fighters on the
galleries inside the walls.  Among La Tour's fighters were Swiss
mercenaries--men who fight for the highest pay.  Did Charnisay in the
language of the day "grease the fist" of the Swiss sentry, or was it a
case of a boorish fellow refusing to fight under a woman's command?
Legend gives both explanations; but on Easter Sunday morning
Charnisay's men gained entrance by scaling the walls where the Swiss
sentry stood.  Madame La Tour rushed her men to an inner fort loopholed
with guns.  Afraid of a final defeat that would disgrace him before all
the world, Charnisay called up generous terms if she would surrender.
To save the {69} lives of the men Madame La Tour agreed to honorable
surrender, and the doors were opened.  In rushed Charnisay!  To his
amazement the woman had only a handful of men.  Disgusted with himself
and boiling over with revenge for all these years of enmity, Charnisay
forgot his promise and hanged every soul of the garrison but the
traitor who acted as executioner, compelling Madame La Tour to watch
the execution with a halter round her neck amid the jeers of the
soldiery.  Legend says that the experience drove her insane and caused
her death within three weeks.  Charnisay was now lord of all Acadia,
with 10,000 pounds worth of Madame La Tour's jewelry transferred to
Port Royal and all La Tour's furs safe in the warehouses of Annapolis
Basin; but he did not long enjoy his triumph.  He had the reputation of
treating his Indian servants with great brutality.  On the 24th of May,
1650, an Indian was rowing him up the narrows near Port Royal.
Charnisay could not swim.  Without apparent cause the boat upset.  The
Indian swam ashore.  The commander perished.  Legend again avers that
the Indian upset the boat to be revenged on Charnisay for some


La Tour had been wandering from Newfoundland to Boston and Quebec
seeking aid, but a lost cause has few friends, and if La Tour turned
pirate on Boston boats, he probably thought he was justified in paying
off the score of Boston's bargain with Charnisay.  Later he turned
trader with the Indians from Hudson Bay, and found friends in Quebec.
Word of his wrongs reached the French court.  When Charnisay perished,
La Tour was at last appointed lieutenant governor of Acadia.  Widow
{70} Charnisay, left with eight children, all minors, made what
reparation she could to La Tour by giving back the fort on the St.
John, and La Tour, to wipe out the bitter enmity, married the widow of
his enemy in February of 1653.

But this was not the seal of peace on his troubled life.  Cromwell was
now ascendant in England, and Major Sedgwick of Boston, in 1654, with a
powerful fleet, captured Port Royal and St. John.  Weary of fighting
what seemed to be destiny, La Tour became a British subject, and with
two other Englishmen was granted the whole of Acadia.  Ten years later
his English partners bought out his rights, and La Tour died in the
land of his many trials about 1666.  A year later the Treaty of Breda
restored Acadia to France.



FROM 1635 TO 1650

Mystics come to Canada--A city built of dreams--First night at
Montreal--Maisonneuve fights raiders--Le Jeune joins the
hunters--Brébeuf goes to Lake Huron--Life at the Huron mission--The
scourge of the Iroquois--The fight at St. Louis--Rageneau's converts
resist--Flight of the Hurons

While Charles de La Tour and Charnisay scoured the Bay of Fundy in
border warfare like buccaneers of the Spanish Main, what was Quebec

The Hundred Associates were to colonize the country; but fur trading
and farming never go together.  One means the end of the other; and the
Hundred Associates shifted the obligation of settling the country by
granting vast estates called seigniories along the St. Lawrence and
leaving to these new lords of the soil the duty of bringing out
habitants.  Later they deeded over for an annual rental of beaver skins
the entire fur monopoly to the Habitant Company, made up of the leading
people of New France.  So ended all the fine promises of four thousand

Years ago Pontgravé had learned that the Indians of the Up-Country did
not care to come down the St. Lawrence farther than Lake St. Peter's,
where Iroquois foe lay in ambush; and the year before Champlain died a
double expedition had set out from Quebec in July: one to build a fort
north of Lake St.  Peter's at the entrance to the river with three
mouths,--in other words, to found Three Rivers; the other, under Father
Brébeuf, the Jesuit, and Jean Nicolet, the wood runner, to establish a
mission in the country of the Hurons and to explore the Great Lakes.

In fact, it must never be forgotten that Champlain's ambitions in
laying the foundations of a new nation aimed just as much to establish
a kingdom of heaven on earth as to win a new kingdom for France.
Always, in the minds of the fathers of New France, Church was to be
first; State, second.  When Charles de Montmagny, Knight of Malta,
landed in Quebec one June morning in 1636, to succeed Champlain as
governor of New France, he noticed a crucifix planted by the path side
where {72} viceroy and officers clambered up the steep hill to Castle
St. Louis.  Instantly Montmagny fell to his knees before the cross in
silent adoration, and his example was followed by all the gay train of
beplumed officers.  The Jesuits regarded the episode as a splendid omen
for New France, and set their chapel organ rolling a _Te Deum_ of
praise, while Governor and retinue filed before the altars with bared

It was in the same spirit that Montreal was founded.

The Jesuits' letters on the Canadian missions were now being read in
France.  Religious orders were on fire with missionary ardor.  The
Canadian missions became the fashion of the court.  Ladies of noble
blood asked no greater privilege than to contribute their fortunes for
missions in Canada.  Nuns lay prostrate before altars praying night and
day for the advancement of the heavenly kingdom on the St. Lawrence.
The Jesuits had begun their college in Quebec.  The very year that
Champlain had first come to the St. Lawrence there had been born in
Normandy, of noble parentage, a little girl who became a passionate
devotee of Canadian missions.  To divert her mind from the calling of a
nun, her father had thrown her into a whirl of gayety from which she
emerged married; but her husband died in a few years, and Madame de la
Peltrie, left a widow at twenty-two, turned again heart and soul to the
scheme of endowing a Canadian mission.  Again her father tried to
divert her mind, threatening to cut off her fortune if she did not
marry.  An engagement to a young noble, who was as keen a devotee as
herself, quieted her father and averted the loss of her fortune.  On
the death of her father the formal union was dissolved, and Madame de
la Peltrie proceeded to the Ursuline Convent of Tours, where the
Jesuits had already chosen a mother superior for the new institution to
be founded at Quebec--Marie of the Incarnation, a woman of some fifty
years, a widow like Madame de la Peltrie, and, like Madame de la
Peltrie, a mystic dreamer of celestial visions and divine communings
and heroic sacrifices.  How much of truth, how much of self-delusion,
{73} lay in these dreams of heavenly revelation is not for the outsider
to say.  It is as impossible for the practical mind to pronounce
judgment on the mystic as for the mystic to pronounce sentence on the
scientist.  Both have their truths, both have their errors; and by
their fruits are they known.

[Illustration: MADAME DE LA PELTRIE  (After a picture in the Ursuline
Convent, Quebec)]

May 4th, 1639, Madame de la Peltrie and Marie of the Incarnation
embarked from Dieppe for Canada.  In the ship were also another
Ursuline nun, three hospital sisters to found the Hôtel Dieu at Quebec,
Father Vimont, superior of Quebec Jesuits, and two other priests.  The
boat was like a chapel.  Ship's bell tolled services.  Morning prayer
and evensong were chanted from the decks, and the pilgrims firmly
believed that their vows allayed a storm.  July 1st they were among the
rocking dories of the Newfoundland fishermen, and then on the 15th the
little sailboat washed and rolled to anchor inshore among the fur
traders under the heights of Tadoussac.

At sight of the somber Saguenay, the silver-flooded St. Lawrence, the
frowning mountains, the far purple hills, the primeval forests through
which the wind rushed with the sound of the sea, the fishing craft
dancing on the tide like cockle boats, the grizzled fur traders bronzed
as the crinkled oak forests where they passed their lives, the tawny,
naked savages agape at these white-skinned women come from afar, the
hearts of the {74} housed-up nuns swelled with emotions strange and
sweet,--the emotions of a new life in a new world.  And when they
scrambled over the rope coils aboard a fishing schooner to go on up to
Quebec, and heard the deep-voiced shoutings of the men, and witnessed
the toilers of the deep fighting wind and wave for the harvest of the
sea, did it dawn on the fair sisterhood that God must have workers
_out_ in the strife of the world, as well as workers _shut up_ from the
world inside convent walls?  Who knows? . . .  Who knows?  At
Tadoussac, that morning, to both Madame de la Peltrie and Marie of the
Incarnation it must have seemed as if their visions had become real.
And then the cannon of Quebec began to thunder till the echoes rolled
from hill to hill and shook--as the mystics thought--the very
strongholds of hell.  Tears streamed down their cheeks at such welcome.
The whole Quebec populace had rallied to the water front, and there
stood Governor Montmagny in velvet cloak with sword at belt waving hat
in welcome.  Soldiers and priests cheered till the ramparts rang.  As
the nuns put foot to earth once more they fell on their knees and
kissed the soil of Canada.  August 1st was fête day in Quebec.  The
chapel chimes rang . . . and rang again their gladness.  The organ
rolled out its floods of soul-shattering music, and deep-throated chant
of priests invoked God's blessing on the coming of the women to the
mission.  So began the Ursuline Convent of Quebec and the Hôtel Dieu of
the hospital sisters; but Montreal was still a howling wilderness
untenanted by man save in midsummer, when the fur traders came to
Champlain's factory and the canoes of the Indians from the Up-Country
danced down the swirling rapids like sea birds on waves.

The letters from the Jesuit missions touched more hearts than those of
the mystic nuns.

In Anjou dwelt a receiver of taxes--Jérôme le Royer de la Dauversière,
a stout, practical, God-fearing man with a family, about as far removed
in temperament from the founders of the Ursulines as a character could
well be.  Yet he, too, had mystic {75} dreams and heard voices bidding
him found a mission in the tenantless wilderness of Montreal.  To the
practical man the thing seems sheer moon-stark madness.  If Dauversière
had lived in modern days he would have been committed to an asylum.
Here was a man with a family, without a fortune, commanded by what he
thought was the voice of Heaven to found a hospital in a wilderness
where there were no people.  Also in Paris dwelt a young priest, Jean
Jacques Olier, who heard the self-same voices uttering the self-same
command.  These two men were unknown to each other; yet when they met
by chance in the picture gallery of an old castle, there fell from
their eyes, as it were, scales, and they beheld as in a vision each the
other's soul, and recognized in each fellow-helper and comrade of the
spirit.  To all this the practical man cries out "Bosh"!  Yet Montreal
is no bosh, but a stately city, and it sprang from the dreams--"fool
dreams," enemies would call them--of these two men, the Sulpician
priest and the Anjou tax collector.

Hour after hour, arm in arm, they walked and talked, the man of prayers
and the man of taxes.  People or no people at Montreal, money or no
money, they decided that the inner voice must be obeyed.  A Montreal
Society was formed.  Six friends joined.  What would be equal to
$75,000 was collected.  There were to be no profits on this capital.
It was all to be invested to the glory of the Kingdom of Heaven.
Unselfish if you like, foolish they may have been, but not hypocrites.

First of all, they must become Seigneurs of Montreal; but the island of
Montreal had already been granted by the Hundred Associates to one
Lauson.  To render the title doubly secure, Dauversière and Olier
obtained deeds to the island from Lauson and from the Hundred

Forty-five colonists, part soldiers, part devotees, were then gained as
volunteers; but a veritable soldier of Heaven was desired as commander.
Paul de Chomedey, Sieur de Maisonneuve, was noted for his heroism in
war and zeal in religion.  When other officers returned from battle for
wild revels, Maisonneuve withdrew to play the flute or pass hours in
religious {76} contemplation.  His name occurred to both Dauversière
and Olier as fittest for command; but to make doubly sure, they took
lodgings near him, studied his disposition, and then casually told him
of their plans and asked his coöperation.  Maisonneuve was in the prime
of life, on the way to high service in the army.  His zeal took fire at
thought of founding a Kingdom of God at Montreal; but his father
furiously opposed what must have seemed a mad scheme.  Maisonneuve's
answer was the famous promise of Christ: "No man hath left house or
brethren or sister for my sake but he shall receive a hundredfold."

Maisonneuve was warned there would be no earthly reward--no pay--for
his arduous task; but he answered, "I devote my life and future; and I
expect no recompense."

Mademoiselle Jeanne Mance, thirty-four years old, who had given herself
to good works from childhood, though she had not yet joined the
cloister, now felt the call to labor in the wilderness.  Later, in
1653, came Marguerite Bourgeoys to the little colony beneath the
mountain.  She too, like Jeanne Mance, distrusted dreams and visions
and mystic communings, cherishing a religion of good works rather than
introspection of the soul.  Dauversière and Olier remained in France.
Fortunately for Montreal, practical Christians, fighting soldiers of
the cross, carried the heavenly standard to the wilderness.

It was too late to ascend the St. Lawrence when the ship brought the
crusaders to Quebec in August, 1641; and difficulties harried them from
the outset.  Was Montmagny, the Governor, jealous of Maisonneuve; or
did he simply realize the fearful dangers Maisonneuve's people would
run going beyond the protection of Quebec?  At all events, he
disapproved this building of a second colony at Montreal, when the
first colony at Quebec could barely gain subsistence.  He offered them
the Island of Orleans in exchange for the Island of Montreal, and
warned them of Iroquois raid.

"I have not come to argue," answered Maisonneuve, "but to act.  It is
my duty to found a colony at Montreal, and thither I go though every
tree be an Iroquois."

{77} Maisonneuve passed the winter building boats to ascend the St.
Lawrence next spring; and Madame de la Peltrie, having established the
Ursulines at Quebec, now cast in her lot with the Montrealers for two

May 8, 1642, the little flotilla set out from Quebec--a pinnace with
the passengers, a barge with provisions, two long boats propelled by
oars and a sweep.  Montmagny and Father Vimont accompanied the
crusaders; and as the boats came within sight of the wooded mountain on
May 17, hymns of praise rose from the pilgrims that must have mingled
strangely on Indian ears with the roar of the angry rapids.  One can
easily call up the scene--the mountain, misty with the gathering
shadows of sunset, misty as a veiled bride with the color and bloom of
spring; the boats, moored for the night below St. Helen's Island, where
the sun, blazing behind the half-foliaged trees, paints a path of fire
on the river; the white bark wigwams along shore with the red gleam of
camp fire here and there through the forest; the wilderness world
bathed in a peace as of heaven, as the vesper hymn floats over the
evening air!  It is a scene that will never again be enacted in the
history of the world--dreamers dreaming greatly, building a castle of
dreams, a fortress of holiness in the very center of wilderness
barbarity and cruelty unspeakable.  The multitudinous voices of traffic
shriek where the crusaders' hymn rose that May night.  A great city has
risen on the foundations which these dreamers laid.  Let us not scoff
too loudly at their mystic visions and religious rhapsodies!  Another
generation may scoff at our too-much-worldliness, with our dreamless
grind and visionless toil and harder creeds that reject everything
which cannot be computed in the terms of traffic's dollar!  Well for us
if the fruit of our creeds remain to attest as much worth as the deeds
of these crusaders!

Early next morning the boats pulled in ashore where Cartier had landed
one hundred years before and Champlain had built his factory thirty
years ago.  Maisonneuve was first to spring on land.  He dropped to his
knees in prayer.  The others as {78} they landed did likewise.  Their
hymns floated out on the forest.  Madame de la Peltrie, Jeanne Mance,
and the servant, Charlotte Barré, quickly decorated a wildwood altar
with evergreens.  Then, with Montmagny the Governor, and Maisonneuve
the soldier, standing on either side, Madame de la Peltrie and Jeanne
Mance and Charlotte Barré, bowed in reverence, with soldiers and
sailors standing at rest unhooded, Father Vimont held the first
religious services at Mont Royal.  "You are a grain of mustard seed,"
he said, "and you shall grow till your branches overshadow the earth."

Maisonneuve cut the first tree for the fort; and a hundred legends
might be told of the little colony's pioneer trials.  Once a flood
threatened the existence of the fort.  A cross was erected to stay the
waters and a vow made if Heaven would save the fort a cross should be
carried and placed on the summit of the mountain.  The river abated,
and Maisonneuve climbed the steep mountain, staggering under the weight
of an enormous cross, and planted it at the highest point.  Here, in
the presence of all, mass was held, and it became a regular pilgrimage
from the fort up the mountain to the cross.

In 1743 came Louis d'Ailleboust and his wife, both zealously bound by
the same vows as devotees, bringing word of more funds for Ville Marie,
as Montreal was called.  Montmagny's warning of Iroquois proved all too
true.  Within a year, in June, 1743, six workmen were beset in the
fields, only one escaping.  Because his mission was to convert the
Indians, Maisonneuve had been ever reluctant to meet the Iroquois in
open war, preferring to retreat within the fort when the dog Pilot and
her litter barked loud warning that Indians were hiding in the woods.
Any one who knows the Indian character will realize how clemency would
be mistaken for cowardice.  Even Maisonneuve's soldiers began to doubt

"My lord, my lord," they urged, "are the enemy never to get a sight of
you?  Are we never to face the foe?"

Maisonneuve's answer was in March, 1644, when ambushed hostiles were
detected stealing on the fort.

{79} "Follow me," he ordered thirty men, leaving D'Ailleboust in
command of the fort.

Near the place now known as Place d'Armes the little band was greeted
by the eldritch scream of eighty painted Iroquois.  Shots fell thick
and fast.  The Iroquois dashed to rescue their wounded, and a young
chief, recognizing Maisonneuve as the leader of the white men, made a
rush for the honor of capturing the French commander alive.
Maisonneuve had put himself between his retreating men and the
advancing warriors.  Firing, he would retreat a pace, then fire again,
keeping his face to the foe.  His men succeeded in rushing up the
hillock, then made for the gates in a wild stampede.  Maisonneuve was
backing away, a pistol in each hand.  The Iroquois circled from tree to
tree, near and nearer, and like a wildwood creature of prey was
watching his chance to spring, when the Frenchman fired.  The pistol
missed.  Dodging, the Indian leaped.  Maisonneuve discharged the other
pistol.  The Iroquois fell dead, and while warriors rescued the body,
Maisonneuve gained the fort gates.  This was only one of countless
frays when the dog Pilot with her puppies sounded the alarm of prowlers
in the woods.

What were the letters, what the adventures described by the Jesuits,
that aroused such zeal and inspired such heroism?  It would require
many volumes to record the adventures of the Jesuits in Canada, and a
long list to include all their heroes martyred for the faith.  Only a
few of the most prominent episodes in the Jesuits' adventures can be
given here.

When Pierre le Jeune reached Quebec after the victory of the Kirke
brothers, he found only the charred remains of a mission on the old
site of Cartier's winter quarters down on the St. Charles.  Of houses,
only the gray-stone cottage of Madame Hebert had been left standing.
Here Le Jeune was welcomed and housed till the little mission could be
rebuilt.  At first it consisted of only mud-plastered log cabins,
thatch-roofed, divided into four rooms, with garret and cellar.  One
room decorated with saints' images and pictures served as chapel;
another, as {80} kitchen; a third, as lodgings; the fourth, as
refectory.  In this humble abode six Jesuit priests and two lay
brothers passed the winter after the war.  The roof leaked like a
sieve.  The snow piled high almost as the top of the door.  Le Jeune's
first care was to obtain pupils.  These consisted of an Indian boy and
a negro lad left by the English.  Meals of porridge given free
attracted more Indian pupils; but Le Jeune's greatest difficulty was to
learn the Indian language.  Hearing that a renegade Indian named
Pierre, who had served the French as interpreter, lodged with some
Algonquins camped below Cape Diamond, Le Jeune tramped up the river
bank, along what is now the Lower Road, where he found the Indians
wigwamming, and by the bribe of free food obtained Pierre.  Pierre was
at best a tricky scoundrel, who considered it a joke to give Le Jeune
the wrong word for some religious precept, gorged himself on the
missionaries' food, stole their communion wine, and ran off at Lent to
escape fasting.

[Illustration: PIERRE LE JEUNE]

When Champlain returned to receive Quebec back from the English, more
priests joined the Jesuits' mission.  Among them was the lion-hearted
giant, Brébeuf.

If Champlain's bush lopers could join bands of wandering Indians for
the extension of French dominion, surely the Jesuits could dare as
perilous a life "for the greater glory of God,"--as their vows declared.

{81} Le Jeune joined a band of wandering Montaignais, Pierre, the
rascal, tapping the keg of sacramental wine the first night out, and
turning the whole camp into a drunken bedlam, till his own brother
sobered him with a kettle of hot water flung full in the face.  That
night the priest slept apart from the camp in the woods.  By the time
the hunters reached the forest borderland between Quebec and New
Brunswick, their number had increased to forty-five.  By Christmas time
game is usually dormant, still living on the stores of the fall and not
yet driven afield by spring hunger.  In camp was no food.  The hunters
halted the march, and came in Christmas Eve of 1633 with not so much as
a pound of flesh for nearly fifty people.  From the first the Indian
medicine man had heaped ridicule on the white priest, and Pierre had
refused to interpret as much as a single prayer; but now the whole camp
was starving.  Pierre happened to tell the other Indians that Christmas
was the day on which the white man's God had come to earth.  In vain
the medicine man had pounded his tom-tom and shouted at the Indian gods
from the top of the wigwams and offered sacrifice of animals to be
slain.  No game had come as the result of the medicine man's invocation.

Le Jeune gathered the people about him and through Pierre, the
interpreter, bade them try the white man's God.  In the largest of the
wigwams a little altar was fitted up.  Then the Indians repeated this
prayer after Le Jeune:

Jesus, Son of the Almighty . . . who died for us . . . who promised
that if we ask anything in Thy name, Thou wilt do it--I pray Thee with
all my heart, give food to these people . . . this people promises Thee
faithfully they will trust Thee entirely and obey Thee with all their
heart!  My Lord, hear my prayer!  I present Thee my life for this
people, most willing to die that they may live and know Thee.

"Take that back," grunted the chief.  "We love you!  We don't want you
to die."

"I only want to show that I am your friend," answered the priest.

Le Jeune then commanded them to go forth to the hunt, full of faith
that God would give them food.

{82} But alas for the poor father's hopes and the childlike Indian vow!
True, they found abundance of food,--a beaver dam full of beaver, a
moose, a porcupine taken by the Indian medicine man.  Father Le Jeune,
with radiant face, met the hunters returning laden with game.

"We must thank your God for this," said the Indian chief, throwing down
his load.

"Bah," says Pierre, "you 'd have found it anyway."

"This is not the time to talk," sneered the medicine man.  "Let the
hungry people eat."

And by the time the Indians had gorged themselves with ample measure
for their long fast, they were torpid with sleep.  The sad priest was
fain to wander out under the stars.  There, in the snow-padded silences
of the white-limned forest, far from the joyous peal of Christmas
bells, he knelt alone and worshiped God.

For five months he wandered with the Montaignais, and now in April the
hunters turned toward Quebec with their furs.  At three in the morning
Le Jeune knocked on the door of the mission house at Quebec, and was
welcomed home by the priests.  The pilgrimage had taught him what the
Jesuits have always held--the way to power with a people is through the
education of the children.  "Give me a child for the first seven years
of its life," said a famous educator, "and I care not what you do with
him the rest of his years."  Missions and schools must be established
among the tribes of Hurons and Iroquois.

Consequently, when Champlain sent his soldiers in 1634 to build a fort
at Three Rivers, they were accompanied by three Jesuits, chief of whom
was Jean de Brébeuf, lion-hearted, bound for the land of the Hurons.
The chapel bells of Quebec rang and rang again in honor of the new
Jesuit mission--morning, noon, and night they chimed in airy music,
calling men's thoughts to God, just as you may hear the chimes to-day;
and the ramparts below Quebec thundered and reëchoed with salvos of
cannon when the missionaries set out for Three Rivers.

{83} At Three Rivers waited the Indians of the Up-Country.  The Jesuits
embarked with them for the land of the Hurons.  The priests traveled
barefoot to avoid injuring the frail bark of the canoes.  Barely had
farewell cheers faded on the river, when the canoes spread apart.  With
pieces of buckskin hoisted on fishing rods for sail, and a flipping of
paddles as naked, bronzed arms set the pace, the voyage had begun.
Heroism is easy with chapel bells ringing; it is another matter,
barefoot and with sleeves rolled up.

It was the same trail that Champlain had followed up the Ottawa.  Only
Champlain was assured of good treatment, for he had promised to fight
in the Indian wars; but the Jesuits were dependent on the caprice of
their conductors.  Any one, who, from experience in the wilds, has
learned how the term "tenderfoot" came to be applied, will realize the
hardships endured--and endured without self-pity--by these scholarly
men of immured life.  The rocks of the portage cut their naked feet.
The Indians refused to carry their packs overland and flung bundles of
clothing and food into the water.  In fair weather the voyageurs slept
on the sand under the overturned canoes; in rain a wigwam was raised,
and into the close confines of this tent crowded men, women, and
children, for the most part naked, and with less idea of decency than a
domestic dog.  Each night, as the boats were beached, the priests
wandered off into the woods to hold their prayers in privacy.  Soon the
canoes were so far apart the different boats did not camp together, and
the white men were scattered alone among the savages.  Robberies
increased till, when Brébeuf reached Georgian Bay, thirty days from
leaving Three Rivers, he had little left but the bundles he had carried
for himself.

Brébeuf had been to the Huron country before with Etienne Brulé,
Champlain's pathfinder; but of the first mission no record exists.
Brébeuf found that Brulé had been murdered near the modern Penetang;
and the Indians had scarcely brought the priest's canoe ashore, when
they bolted through the woods, leaving him to follow as best he could.

{84} Take a map of modern Ontario.  Draw a circle round Georgian Bay,
running from Muskoka through Lake Simcoe and up into Manitoulin Island.
Here, on the very stamping ground of the summer tourist, was the scene
of the Jesuits' Huron mission.

[Illustration: GEORGIAN BAY]

When Brébeuf's tall frame emerged from the woods, the whole village of
Ihonateria dashed out to welcome him, shouting, "He has come!  He has
come again!  Behold, the Black Robe has come again!"  Young braves
willingly ran back through the forest for the baggage, which the
voyageurs had thrown aside; and at one o'clock in the morning, as the
messengers came through the moonlit forest, Brébeuf took up his abode
in the house of the leading chief.  Later came Fathers Davost and
Daniel.  By October the Indians had built the missionaries their
wigwam, a bark-covered house of logs, thirty-six feet long, divided
into three rooms, reception room, living quarters, church.  In the
entrance hall assembled the Indians, squatting on the floor, gazing in
astonishment at the religious pictures on the wall, and, above all, at
the clock.

{85} "What does he say?" they would ask, listening solemnly to the

"He says 'Hang on the kettle,'" Brébeuf would answer as the clock
struck twelve, and the whole conclave would be given a simple meal of
corn porridge; but at four the clock sang a different song.

"It says 'Get up and go home,'" Brébeuf would explain, and the Indians
would file out, knowing well that the Black Robes were to engage in

No holiday in the wildwoods was the Jesuit mission.  Chapel bell called
to service at four in the morning.  Eight was the breakfast hour.  The
morning was passed teaching, preaching, visiting.  At two o'clock was
dinner, when a chapter of the Bible was read.  After four the Indians
were dismissed, and the missionaries met to compare notes and plan the
next day's campaign.

By 1645, five mission houses had been established, with Ste. Marie on
the Wye, east of Midland, as the central house.  Near Lake Simcoe were
two missions,--St. Jean Ba'tiste and St. Joseph; near Penetang, St.
Louis, and St. Ignace.  Westward of Ste. Marie on the Wye were half a
dozen irregular missions among the Tobacco Indians.  Each of the five
regular missions boasted palisaded inclosures, a chapel of log slabs
with bell and spire, though the latter might be only a high wooden
cross.  At Ste. Marie, the central station, were lodgings for sixty
people, a hospital, kitchen garden, with cattle, pigs, and poultry.  At
various times soldiers had been sent up by the Quebec governors, till
some thirty or forty were housed at Ste. Marie.  In all were eighteen
priests, four lay brothers, seven white servants, and twenty-three
volunteers, unpaid helpers--donnés, they were called, young men
ardently religious, learning woodlore and the Indian language among the
Jesuits, as well as exploring whenever it was possible for them to
accompany the Indians.  Among the volunteers was one Chouart
Groseillers, who, if he did not accompany Father Jogues on a preaching
tour to the tribes of Lake Superior, had at least gone as far as the
Sault and learned of the vast unexplored world beyond Lake Superior.
{86} Food, as always, played a large part in winning the soul of the
redskin.  On church fête days as many as three thousand people were fed
and lodged at Ste. Marie.  That the priests suffered many trials among
the unreasonable savages need not be told.  When it rained too heavily
they were accused of ruining the crops by praying for too much rain;
when there was drouth they were blamed for not arranging this matter
with their God; and when the scourge of smallpox raged through the
Huron villages, devastating the wigwams so that the timber wolves
wandered unmolested among the dead, it was easy for the humpback
sorcerer to ascribe the pestilence also to the influence of the Black
Robes.  Once their houses were set on fire.  Again and again their
lives were threatened.  Often after tramping twenty miles through the
sleet-soaked, snow-drifted spring forests, arriving at an Indian
village foredone and exhausted, the Jesuit was met with no better
welcome than a wigwam flap closed against his entrance, or a rabble of
impish children hooting and jeering him as he sought shelter from house
to house.

But an influence was at work on the borders of the St. Lawrence that
yearly rendered the Hurons more tractable.  From raiding the
settlements of the St. Lawrence, the Iroquois were sweeping in a
scourge more deadly than smallpox up the Ottawa to the very forests of
Georgian Bay.  The Hurons no longer dared to go down to Quebec in
swarming canoes.  Only a few picked warriors--perhaps two hundred and
fifty--would venture so near the Iroquois fighting ground.

One winter night, as the priests sat round their hearth fire watching
the mournful shadows cast by the blazing logs on the rude walls,
Brébeuf, the soldier, lion-hearted, the fearless, told in a low, dreamy
voice of a vision that had come,--the vision of a huge fiery cross
rising slowly out of the forest and moving across the face of the sky
towards the Huron country.  It seemed to come from the land of the
Iroquois.  Was the priest's vision a dream, or his own intuition deeper
than reason, assuming dire form, portending a universal fear?  Who can
tell?  I can but repeat the story as it is told in their annals.

{87} "How large was the cross?" asked the other priests.  Brébeuf gazes
long in the fire.

"Large enough to crucify us all," he answers.

And, as he had dreamed, fell the blow.

St. Joseph, of the Lake Simcoe region, was situated a day's travel from
the main fortified mission of Ste. Marie.  Round it were some two
thousand Hurons to whom Father Daniel ministered.  Father Daniel was
just closing the morning services on July the 4th, 1648.  His tawny
people were on their knees repeating the responses of the service, when
from the forest, humming with insect and bird life, arose a sound that
was neither wind nor running water--confused, increasing, nearing!
Then a shriek broke within the fort palisades,--"The enemy! the
Iroquois!" and the courtyard was in an uproar indescribable.  Painted
redskins, naked but for the breech clout, were dashing across the
cornfields to scale the palisades or force the hastily slammed gates.
Father Daniel rushed from church to wigwams rallying the Huron
warriors, while the women and children, the aged and the feeble, ran a
terrified rabble to the shelter of the chapel.  Before the Hurons could
man the walls, Iroquois hatchets had hacked holes of entrance in the
palisades.  The fort was rushed by a bloodthirsty horde making the air
hideous with fiendish screams.

"Fly!  Save yourselves!" shouted the priest.  "I stay here!  We shall
this day meet in Heaven!"

In the volley and counter volley of ball and arrow, Father Daniel
reeled on his face, shot in the heart.  In a trice his body was cut to
pieces, and the Iroquois were bathing their hands in his warm
lifeblood.  A moment later the village was in roaring flames, and on
the burning pile were flung the fragments of the priest's body.  The
victors set out on the homeward tramp with a line of more than six
hundred prisoners, the majority, women and children, to be brained if
their strength failed on the march, to be tortured in the Iroquois
towns if they survived the abuse on the way.

{88} Next westward from the Lake Simcoe missions were St. Ignace with
four hundred people and St. Louis with seven hundred, near the modern
Penetang and within short distance of the Jesuits' strong headquarters
on the River Wye.  At these two missions labored Brébeuf, the giant,
and a fragile priest named Lalemant.

Encouraged by the total destruction of St. Joseph, the Iroquois that
very fall took the warpath with more than one thousand braves.
Ascending the Ottawa leisurely, they had passed the winter hunting and
cutting off any stray wanderers found in the forest.

The Hurons knew the doom that was slowly approaching.  Yet they
remained passive, stunned, terrified by the blow at St. Joseph.  It was
spring of 1649 before the warriors reached Georgian Bay.  March winds
had cleared the trail of snowdrifts, but the forests were still
leafless.  St. Ignace mission lay between Lake Simcoe and St. Louis.
Approaching it one windy March night, the Iroquois had cut holes
through the palisades before dawn and burst inside the walls with the
yells and gyrations of some hideous hell dance.  Here a warrior
simulated the howl of the wolf.  There another approached in the
crouching leaps of a panther, all the while uttering the yelps and
screams of a beast of prey lashed to fury.  The poor Hurons were easy
victims.  Nearly all their braves happened to be absent hunting, and
the four hundred women and children, rushing from the long houses half
dazed with sleep, fell without realizing their fate, or found
themselves herded in the chapel like cattle at the shambles, Iroquois
guards at every window and door.

Luckily three Hurons escaped over the palisades and rushed breathless
through the forest to forewarn Brébeuf and Lalemant cooped up in St.
Louis.  The Iroquois came on behind like a wolf pack.

"Escape!  Escape!  Run to the woods, Black Robes!  There is yet time,"
the Indian converts urged Brébeuf; but the lion-hearted stood
steadfast, though Lalemant, new to scenes of carnage, turned white and
trembled in spite of his resolution.

{89} "Who would protect the women if the men fled like deer to the
woods?" demanded Brébeuf, and the tigerish yells of the on-rushing
horde answered the question.

[Illustration: BRÉBEUF]

Before day dawn had tipped the branches of the leafless trees with
shafted sunlight, the enemy were hacking furiously at the palisades.
Trapped and cornered, the most timid of animals will fight.  With such
fury, reckless from desperation, cherishing no hope, the Hurons now
fought, but they were handicapped by lack of guns and balls.  Thirty
Iroquois had been slain, a hundred wounded, and the assailants drew off
for breath.  It was only the lull between two thunderclaps.  A moment
later they were on St. Louis' walls and had hacked through a dozen
places.  At these spots the fiercest fighting occurred, and those
Iroquois who had not already bathed their faces in the gore of victims
at St. Ignace were soon enough dyed in their own blood.  Here, there,
everywhere, were Brébeuf and Lalemant, fighting, administering last
rites, exhorting the Hurons to perish valiantly.  Then the rolling
clouds of flame and smoke told the Hurons that their village was on
fire.  Some dashed back to die inside the burning wigwams.  Others
fought desperately to escape through the broken walls.  A few, in the
confusion and smoke, succeeded in reaching the woods, whence they ran
to warn Ste. Marie on the Wye.  Brébeuf and Lalemant had been knocked
down, stripped, bound, and were now {90} half driven, half dragged,
with the other captives to be tortured at Ignace.  Not a sign of fear
did either priest betray.

One would fain pass over the next pages of the Jesuit records.  It is
inconceivable how human nature, even savage nature, so often stoops
beneath the most repellent cruelties of the brute world.  It is
inconceivable unless one acknowledge an influence fiendish; but let us
not judge the Indians too harshly.  When the Iroquois warriors were
torturing the Hurons and their missionaries, the populace of civilized
European cities was outdoing the savages on victims whose sins were

While the Jesuits of Ste. Marie were praying all day and night before
the lighted altar for heavenly intervention to rescue Brébeuf and
Lalemant, the two captured priests stood bound to the torture stakes,
the gapingstock of a thousand fiends.  When the Iroquois singed Brébeuf
from head to foot with burning birch bark, he threatened them in tones
of thunder with everlasting damnation for persecuting the servants of
God.  The Iroquois shrieked with laughter.  Such spirit in a man was to
their liking.  Then, to stop his voice, they cut away his lips and
rammed a red-hot iron into his mouth.  Not once did the giant priest
flinch or writhe at the torture stake.  Then they brought out Lalemant,
that Brébeuf might suffer the agony of seeing a weaker spirit flinch.
Poor Lalemant fell at his superior's feet, sobbing out a verse of
Scripture.  Then they wreathed Lalemant in oiled bark and set fire to

"We baptize you," they yelled, throwing hot water on the dying man.
Then they railed out blasphemies, obscenities unspeakable, against the
Jesuits' religion.  Brébeuf had not winced, but his frame was relaxing.
He sank to his knees, a dying man.  With the yells of devils jealous of
losing their prey, they ripped off his scalp while he was still alive,
tore his heart from his breast, and drank the warm lifeblood of the
priest.  Brébeuf died at four in the afternoon.  Strange to relate,
Lalemant, of the weaker body, survived the tortures till daybreak,
when, weary of the sport, the Indians desisted from their mad night
orgies and put an end to his sufferings by braining him.

{91} Over at Ste. Marie, Ragueneau and the other priests momentarily
awaited the attack; but at Ste. Marie were forty French soldiers and
ample supply of muskets.  The Iroquois was bravest as the wolf is
bravest--when attacking a lamb.  Three hundred Hurons lay in ambush
along the forest trail.  These ran from the Iroquois like sheep; but
when three hundred more sallied from the fort, led by the French, it
was the Iroquois' turn to run, and they fled back behind the palisades
of St. Louis.  The Hurons followed, entered by the selfsame breaches
the Iroquois had made, and drove the invaders out.  More Iroquois
rushed from Ignace to the rescue.  A hundred Iroquois fell in the day's
fight, and when they finally recaptured St. Louis, only twenty Hurons
remained of the three hundred.  The victory had been bought at too
great cost.  Tying their prisoners to stakes at St. Ignace, they heaped
the courtyard with inflammable wood, set fire to all, and retreated,
taking only enough prisoners to carry their plunder.

IN 1891]

Ste. Marie for the time was safe.  The invaders had gone; but the blow
had crushed forever the prowess of the Huron nation.  The remaining
towns had thought for nothing but flight.  {92} Town after town was
forsaken and burned in the summer of 1649, the corn harvest left
standing in the fields, while the panic-stricken people put out in
their canoes to take refuge on the islands of Georgian Bay.  Ste. Marie
on the Wye alone remained, and the reason for its existence was
vanishing like winter snow before summer sun, for its people fled . . .
fled . . . fled . . . daily fled to the pink granite islands of the
lake.  The Hurons begged the Jesuits to accompany them, and there was
nothing else for Ragueneau to do.  Ste. Marie was stripped, the stock
slain for food.  Then the buildings were set on fire.  June 14, just as
the sunset bathed water and sky in seas of gold, the priest led his
homeless people down to the lake as Moses of old led the children of
Israel.  Oars and sweeps, Georgian Bay calm as glass, they rafted
slowly out to the Christian Islands,--Faith, Hope, and Charity,--which
tourists can still see from passing steamers, a long wooded line beyond
the white water-fret of the wind-swept reefs.  The island known on the
map as Charity, or St. Joseph, was heavily wooded.  Here the refugees
found their haven, and the French soldiers cleared the ground {93} for
a stone fort of walled masonry,--the islands offering little else than
stone and timber, though the fishing has not failed to this day.

[Illustration: MAP OF THE GREAT LAKES Showing the territory of the
Jesuit Huron missions]

By autumn the walled fort was complete, but some eight thousand
refugees had gathered to the island.  Such numbers could not subsist on
Georgian Bay in summer.  In winter their presence meant starvation, and
before the spring of 1650 half had perished.  Of the survivors, many
had fed on the bodies of the dead.  No help had come from Quebec for
almost three years.  The clothing of the priests had long since worn to
shreds.  Ragueneau and his helpers were now dressed in skins like the
Indians, and reduced to a diet of nuts and smoked fish.

With warm weather came sickness.  And also came bands of raiding
Iroquois striking terror to the Tobacco Indians.  Among them, too,
perished Jesuit priests, martyrs to the faith.  Did some of the Hurons
venture from the Christian Islands across to the mainland to hunt, they
were beset by scalping parties and came back to the fort with tales
that crazed Ragueneau's Indians with terror.  The Hurons decided to
abandon Georgian Bay.  Some scattered to Lake Superior, to Green Bay,
to Detroit.  Others found refuge on Manitoulin Island.  A remnant of a
few hundreds followed Ragueneau and the French down the Ottawa to take
shelter at Quebec.  Their descendants may be found to this day at the
mission of Lorette.

To-day, as tourists drive through Quebec, marveling at the massive
buildings and power and wealth of Catholic orders, do they pause to
consider that the foundation stones of that power were dyed in the
blood of these early martyrs?  Or, as the pleasure seekers glide among
the islands of Georgian Bay, do they ever ponder that this fair world
of blue waters and pink granite islands once witnessed the most bloody
tragedy of brute force, triumphant over the blasted hopes of religious



FROM 1650 TO 1672

Radisson captured by Iroquois--Radisson escapes--At Onandaga--How the
French were saved--Word of the western land--Westward bound--Dollard's
Heroes--The fight at the Long Sault--To seek the north sea--Discovers
Hudson Bay--Origin of the great fur company

Having destroyed the Hurons, who were under French protection, it is
not surprising that the Iroquois now set themselves to destroy the
French.  From Montreal to Tadoussac the St. Lawrence swarmed with war
canoes.  No sooner had the river ice broken up and the birds begun
winging north than the Iroquois flocked down the current of the
Richelieu, across Lake St. Peter to Three Rivers, down the St. Lawrence
to Quebec, up the St. Lawrence to Montreal.  And the snows of midwinter
afforded no truce to the raids, for the Iroquois cached their canoes in
the forest, and roamed the woods on snowshoes.  Settlers fled terrified
from their farms to the towns; farmers dared not work in their fields
without a sentry standing guard; Montreal became a prison; Three Rivers
lay blockaded; and at Quebec the war canoes passed defiantly below the
cannon of Cape Diamond, paddles beating defiance against the gun'els,
or prows flaunting the scalps of victims within cannon fire of Castle
St. Louis.  Rich and poor, priests and parishioners, governors and
habitants, all alike trembled before the lurking treachery.  Father
Jogues had been captured on his way from the Huron mission; Père Poncet
was likewise kidnapped at Quebec and carried to the tortures of the
Mohawk towns; and a nephew of the Governor of Quebec was a few years
later attacked while hunting near Lake Champlain.

The outraged people of New France realized that fear was only
increasing the boldness of the Iroquois.  A Mohawk-chief fell into
their hands.  By way of warning, they bound him to a stake and burned
him to death.  The Indian revenge fell swift and sure.  In 1653 the
Governor of Three Rivers and twelve leading citizens were murdered a
short distance from the fort gates.  {95} One night in May of 1652 a
tall, slim, swarthy lad about sixteen years of age was seen winding his
way home to Three Rivers from a day's shooting in the marshes.  He had
set out at day dawn with some friends, but fear of the Iroquois had
driven his comrades back.  Now at nightfall, within sight of Three
Rivers, when the sunset glittered from the chapel spire, he unslung his
bag of game and sat down to reload his musket.  Then he noticed that
the pistols in his belt had been water-soaked from the day's wading,
and he reloaded them too.

Any one who is used to life in the open knows how at sundown wild birds
foregather for a last conclave.  Ducks were winging in myriads and
settling on the lake with noisy flacker.  Unable to resist the
temptation of one last shot, the boy was gliding noiselessly forward
through the rushes, when suddenly he stopped as if rooted to the
ground, with hands thrown up and eyes bulging from his head.  At his
feet lay the corpses of his morning comrades,--scalped, stripped,
hacked almost piecemeal!  Then the instinct of the hunted thing, of
flight, of self-protection, eclipsed momentary terror, and the boy was
ducking into the rushes to hide when, with a crash of musketry from the
woods, the Iroquois were upon him.

When he regained consciousness, he was pegged out on the sand amid a
flotilla of beached canoes, where Iroquois warriors were having an
evening meal.  So began the captivity, the love of the wilds, the wide
wanderings of one of the most intrepid explorers in New France,--Pierre
Esprit Radisson.

His youth and the fact that he would make a good warrior were in his
favor.  When he was carried back to the Mohawk town and with other
prisoners compelled to run the gauntlet between two lines of
tormentors, Radisson ran so fast and dodged so dexterously that he was
not once hit.  The feat was greeted with shrieks of delight by the
Iroquois; and the high-spirited boy was given in adoption to a captive
Huron woman.

Things would have gone well had he not bungled an attempt to escape;
but one night, while in camp with three Iroquois hunters, an Algonquin
captive entered.  While the Iroquois {96} slept with guns stacked
against the trees, the sleepless Algonquin captive rose noiselessly
where he lay by the fire, seized the Mohawk warriors' guns, threw one
tomahawk across to Radisson, and with the other brained two of the
sleepers.  The French boy aimed a blow at the third sleeper, and the
two captives escaped.  But they might have saved themselves the
trouble.  They were pursued and overtaken on Lake St. Peter, within
sight of Three Rivers.  This time Radisson had to endure all the
_diableries_ of Mohawk torture.  For two days he was kept bound to the
torture stake.  The nails were torn from his fingers, the flesh burnt
from the soles of his feet, a hundred other barbarous freaks of impish
Indian children wreaked on the French boy.  Arrows with flaming points
were shot at his naked body.  His mutilated finger ends were ground
between stones, or thrust into the smoking bowl of a pipe full of
coals, or bitten by fiendish youngsters being trained up the way a
Mohawk warrior should go.

[Illustration: A CANADIAN IN SNOWSHOES  (After La Potherie)]

Radisson's youth, his courage, his very dare-devil rashness, together
with presents of wampum belts from his Indian parents, {97} saved his
life for a second time, and a year of wild wanderings with Mohawk
warriors finally brought him to Albany on the Hudson, where the Dutch
would have ransomed him as they had ransomed the two Jesuits, Jogues
and Poncet; but the boy disliked to break faith a second time with his
loyal Indian friends.  Still, the glimpse of white man's life caused a
terrible upheaval of revulsion from the barbarities, the filth, the
vice, of the Mohawk camp.  He could endure Indian life no longer.  One
morning, in the fall of 1653, he stole out from the Mohawk lodges,
while the mist of day dawn still shadowed the forest, and broke at a
run down the trail of the Mohawk valley for Albany.  All day he ran,
pursued by the phantom fright of his own imagination, fancying
everything that crunched beneath his moccasined tread some Mohawk
warrior, seeing in the branches that reeled as he passed the arms of
pursuers stretched out to stop him;--on . . . and on . . . and on, he
ran, pausing neither to eat nor rest; here dashing into the bed of a
stream and running along the pebbled bottom to throw pursuers off the
trail; there breaking through a thicket of brushwood away from the
trail, only to come back to it breathless farther on, when some alarm
of the wind in the trees or deer on the move had proved false.  Only
muscles of iron strength, lithe as elastic, could have endured the
strain.  Nightfall at last came, hiding him from pursuers; but still he
sped on at a run, following the trail by the light of the stars and the
rush of the river.  By sunrise of the second day he was staggering; for
the rocks were slippery with frost and his moccasins worn to tatters.
It was four in the afternoon before he reached the first outlying cabin
of the Dutch settlers.  For three days he lay hidden in Albany behind
sacks of wheat in a thin-boarded attic, through the cracks of which he
could see the Mohawks searching everywhere.  The Jesuit Poncet gave him
passage money to take ship to Europe by way of New York.  New York was
then a village of a few hundred houses, thatch-roofed, with stone fort,
stone church, stone barracks.  Central Park was a rocky wilderness.
What is now Wall Street was the stamping ground of pigs and goats.
January of 1654 Radisson {98} reached Europe, no longer a boy, but a
man inured to danger and hardships and daring, though not yet eighteen.

When Radisson came back to Three Rivers in May he found changes had
taken place in New France.  Among the men murdered with the Governor of
Three Rivers by the Mohawks the preceding year had been his sister's
husband, and the widow had married one Medard Chouart de Groseillers,
who had served in the Huron country as a lay helper with the martyred
Jesuits.  Also a truce had been patched up between the Iroquois and the
French.  The Iroquois were warring against the Eries and wanted arms
from the French.  A still more treacherous motive underlay the
Iroquois' peace.  They wanted a French settlement in their country as a
guarantee of non-intervention when they continued to raid the refugee
Hurons.  Such duplicity was unsuspected by New France.  The Jesuits
looked upon the peace as designed by Providence to enable them to
establish missions among the Iroquois.  Father Le Moyne went from
village to village preaching the gospel and receiving belts of wampum
as tokens of peace--one belt containing as many as seven thousand
beads.  When the Onondagas asked for a French colony, Lauzon, the
French Governor, readily consented if the Jesuits would pay the cost,
estimated at about $10,000; and in 1656 Major Dupuis had led fifty
Frenchmen and four Jesuits up the St. Lawrence in long boats through
the wilderness to a little hill on Lake Onondaga, where a palisaded
fort was built, and the lilies of France, embroidered on a white silk
flag by the Ursuline nuns, flung from the breeze above the Iroquois
land.  The colony was hardly established before three hundred Mohawks
fell on the Hurons encamped under shelter of Quebec, butchered without
mercy, and departed with shouts of laughter that echoed below the guns
at Cape Diamond, scalps waving from the prow of each Iroquois canoe.
Quebec was thunderstruck, numb with fright.  The French dared not
retaliate, or the Iroquois would fall on the colony at Onondaga.
Perhaps people who keep their vision too constantly fixed on heaven
lose {99} sight of the practical duties of earth; but when eighty
Onondagas came again in 1657, inviting a hundred Hurons to join the
Iroquois Confederacy, the Jesuits again suspected no treachery in the
invitation, but saw only a providential opportunity to spread one
hundred Huron converts among the Iroquois pagans.  Father Ragueneau,
who had led the poor refugees down from the Christian Islands on
Georgian Bay, now with another priest offered to accompany the Hurons
to the Iroquois nation.  An interpreter was needed.  Young Radisson,
now twenty-one years of age, offered to go as a lay helper, and the
party of two hundred and twenty French, eighty Iroquois, one hundred
Hurons, departed from the gates of Montreal, July 26.

[Illustration: SAUSON'S MAP, 1656]

Hardly were they beyond recall, before scouts brought word that twelve
hundred Iroquois had gone on the warpath against Canada, and three
Frenchmen of Montreal had been scalped.  At last the Governor of Quebec
bestirred himself: he caused twelve Iroquois to be seized and held as
hostages for the safety of the French.

The Onondagas had set out from Montreal carrying the Frenchmen's
baggage.  Beyond the first portage they flung the packs on the ground,
hurried the Hurons into canoes so that no two Hurons were in one boat,
and paddled over the {100} water with loud laughter, leaving the French
in the lurch.  Father Ragueneau and Radisson quickly read the ominous
signs.  Telling the other French to gather up the baggage, they armed
themselves and paddled in swift pursuit.  That night Ragueneau's party
and the Onondagas camped together.  Nothing was said or done to evince
treachery.  Friends and enemies, Onondagas and Hurons and white men,
paddled and camped together for another week; but when, on August 3,
four Huron warriors and two women forcibly seized a canoe and headed
back for Montreal, the Onondagas would delay no longer.  That afternoon
as the Indians paddled inshore to camp on one of the Thousand Islands,
some Onondaga braves rushed into the woods as if to hunt.  As the
canoes grated the pebbled shore a secret signal was given.  The Huron
men with their eyes bent on the beach, intent on landing, never knew
that they had been struck.  Onondaga hatchets, clubs, spears, were
plied from the water side, and from the hunters ambushed on shore
crashed musketry that mowed down those who would have fled to the woods.

By night time only a few Huron women and the French had survived the
massacre.  Such was the baptism of blood that inaugurated the French
colony at Onondaga.  Luckily the fort built on the crest of the hill
above Lake Onondaga was large enough to house stock and provisions.
Outside the palisades there daily gathered more Iroquois warriors, who
no longer dissembled a hunger for Jesuits' preaching.  Among the
warriors were Radisson's old friends of the Mohawks, and his foster
father confessed to him frankly that the Confederacy were only delaying
the massacre of the French till they could somehow obtain the freedom
of the twelve Iroquois hostages held at Quebec.

Daily more warriors gathered; nightly the war drum pounded; week after
week the beleaguered and imprisoned French heard their stealthy enemy
closing nearer and nearer on them, and the painted foliage of autumn
frosts gave place to the leafless trees and the drifting snows of
midwinter.  The French were hemmed in completely as if on a desert
isle, and no help could come from Quebec, where New France was
literally under Iroquois siege.

{101} The question was, what to do?  Messengers had been secretly sent
to Quebec, but the Mohawks had caught the scouts bringing back answers,
and there was no safe escape from the colony through ambushed woods in
midwinter.  The Iroquois could afford to bide their time for victims
who could not escape.  All winter the whites secretly built boats in
the lofts of the fort, but when the timbers were put together the boats
had to be brought downstairs, and a Huron convert spread a terrifying
report of a second deluge for which the white men were preparing a
second Noah's Ark.  Mohawk warriors at once scented an attempt to
escape when the ice broke up in spring, and placed their braves in
ambush along the portages.  Also they sent a deputation to see if that
story of the boats were true.  Forewarned by Radisson, the whites built
a floor over the boats, heaped canoes above the floor, and invited the
Mohawk spies in.  The Mohawks smiled grimly and were reassured.  Canoes
would be ripped into shingles if they ran the ice jam of spring.  The
Iroquois felt doubly certain of their victims; but Radisson, free to go
among the warriors as one of themselves, learned that they were
plotting to murder half the colony and hold the other half as hostages
for the safety of the twelve Indians in the dungeon at Quebec.  The
whites could delay no longer.  Something must be done, but what?
Radisson, knowing the Indian customs, proposed a way out.

No normally built savage could refuse an invitation to a sumptuous
feast.  According to Indian custom, no feaster dare leave uneaten food
on his plate.  Waste to the Indian is crime.  In the words of the
Scotch proverb, "Better burst than waste."  And all Indians have
implicit faith in dreams.  Radisson dreamed--so he told the
Indians--that the white men were to give them a marvelous banquet.  No
sooner dreamed than done!  The Iroquois probably thought it a chance to
obtain possession inside the fort; but the whites had taken good care
to set the banquet between inner and outer walls.

Such a repast no savage had ever enjoyed in the memory of the race.
All the ambushed spies flocked in from the portages.  {102} The painted
warriors washed off their grease, donned their best buckskin, and
rallied to the banquet as to battle.  All the stock but one solitary
pig, a few chickens and dogs, had been slaughtered for the kettle.
Such an odor of luscious meat steamed up from the fort for days as
whetted the warriors' hunger to the appetite of ravenous wolves.
Finally, one night, the trumpets blew a blare that almost burst
eardrums.  Fifes shrilled, and the rub-a-dub-dub of a dozen drums set
the air in a tremor.  A great fire had been kindled between the inner
and outer walls that set shadows dancing in the forest.  Then the gates
were thrown open, and in trooped the feasters.  All the French acting
as waiters, the whites carried in the kettles--kettles of wild fowl,
kettles of oxen, kettles of dogs, kettles of porridge and potatoes and
corn and what not?  That is it--what not?  Were the kettles drugged?
Who knows?  The feasters ate till their eyes were rolling lugubriously;
and still the kettles came round.  The Indians ate till they were
torpid as swollen corpses, and still came the white men with more
kettles, while the mischievous French lad, Radisson, danced a mad jig,
shouting, yelling, "Eat! eat!  Beat the drum!  Awake! awake!  Cheer up!
Eat! eat!"

By midnight every soul of the feast had tumbled over sound asleep, and
at the rear gates were the French, stepping noiselessly, speaking in
whispers, launching their boats loaded with provisions and ammunition.
The soldiers were for going back and butchering every warrior, but the
Jesuits forbade such treachery.  Then Radisson, light-spirited as if
the refugees had been setting out on a holiday, perpetrated yet a last
trick on the warriors.  To the bell rope of the main gate he fastened a
pig, so when the Indians would pull the rope for admission, they would
hear the tramp of a sentry inside.  Then he stuffed effigies of men on
guard round the windows of the fort.

It was a pitchy, sleety night, the river roaring with the loose ice of
spring flood, the forests noisy with the boisterous March wind.  Out on
the maelstrom of ice and flood launched the fifty-three colonists,
March 20, 1658.  By April they were safe {103} inside the walls of
Quebec, and chance hunters brought word that what with sleep, and the
measured tramp, tramp of the pig, and the baying of the dogs, and the
clucking of the chickens inside the fort, the escape of the whites had
not been discovered for a week.  The Indians thought the whites had
gone into retreat for especially long prayers.  Then a warrior climbed
the inner palisades, and rage knew no bounds.  The fort was looted and
burnt to the ground.

Peltry traffic was the life of New France.  Without it the colony would
have perished, and now the rupture of peace with the Iroquois cut off
that traffic.  To the Iroquois land south of the St. Lawrence the
French dared not go, and the land of the Hurons was a devastated
wilderness.  The boats that came out to New France were compelled to
return without a single peltry, but there still remained the unknown
land of the Algonquin northwest and beyond the Great Lakes.  Year after
year young French adventurers essayed the exploration of that land.  In
1634 Jean Nicolet, one of Champlain's wood runners, had gone westward
as far as Green Bay and coasted the shores of Lake Michigan.  Jesuits,
where they preached on Lake Superior, had been told of a vast land
beyond the Sweet Water Seas,--Great Lakes,--a land where wandered
tribes of warriors powerful as the Iroquois.

Yearly, when the Algonquins came down the Ottawa to trade, Jesuits and
young French adventurers accompanied the canoes back up the Ottawa,
hoping to reach the Unknown Land, which rumor said was bounded only by
the Western Sea.  However, the priests went no farther than Lake
Nipissing; but two nameless French wood runners came back from Green
Bay in August of 1656 with marvelous tales of wandering hunters to the
north called "Christines" (Crees), who passed the winter hunting
buffalo on a land bare of trees (the prairie) and the summer fishing on
the shores of the North Sea (Hudson's Bay).  They told also of fierce
tribes south of the Christines (the Sioux), who traded with the Indians
of the Spanish settlements in Mexico.

{104} All New France became fired by these reports.  When Radisson
returned from Onondaga in April of 1659, he found his brother-in-law,
Chouart Groseillers, just back from Nipissing, where he had been
serving the Jesuits, with more tales of this marvelous undiscovered
land.  The two kinsmen decided to go back with the Algonquins that very
year; for, confessed Radisson in his journal, "I longed to see myself
again in a boat."

Thirty other Frenchmen and two Jesuits had assembled in Montreal to
join the Algonquins.  More than sixty canoes set out from Montreal in
June, the one hundred and forty Algonquins well supplied with firearms
to defend themselves from marauding Iroquois.  Numbers begot courage,
courage carelessness; and before the fleet had reached the Chaudière
Falls, at the modern city of Ottawa, the canoes had spread far apart in
utter forgetfulness of danger.  Not twenty were within calling distance
when an Indian prophet, or wandering medicine man, ran down to the
shore, throwing his blanket and hatchet aside as signal of peace, and
shouting out warning of Iroquois warriors ambushed farther up the river.

Drunk with the new sense of power from the possession of French
firearms, perhaps drunk too with French brandy obtained at Montreal,
the Algonquins paused to take the strange captive on board, and
returned thanks for the friendly warning by calling their benefactor a
"coward and a dog and a hen."  At the same time they took the
precaution of sleeping in mid-stream with their canoes abreast tied to
water-logged trees.  A dull roar through the night mist foretold they
were nearing the great Chaudière Falls; and at first streak of day dawn
there was a rush to land and cross the long portage before the mist
lifted and exposed them to the hostiles.

To any one who knows the region of Canada's capital the scene can
easily be recalled: the long string of canoes gliding through the gray
morning like phantoms; Rideau Falls shimmering on the left like a snowy
curtain; the dense green of Gatineau Point as the birch craft swerved
across the river inshore to the right; the wooded heights, now known as
Parliament Hill, {105} jutting above the river mist, the new foliage of
the topmost trees just tipped with the first primrose shafts of
sunrise; then the vague stir and unrest in the air as the sun came up
till the gray fog became rose mist shot with gold, and rose like a
curtain to the upper airs, revealing the angry, tempest-tossed cataract
straight ahead, hurtling over the rocks of the Chaudière in walls of
living waters.  Where the lumber piles of Hull on the right to-day jut
out as if to span Ottawa River to Parliament Hill, the voyageurs would
land to portage across to Lake Du Chêne.

Just as they sheered inshore the morning air was split by a hideous din
of guns and war whoops.  The Iroquois had been lying in ambush at the
portage.  The Algonquins' bravado now became a panic.  They abandoned
canoes and baggage, threw themselves behind a windfall of trees, and
poured a steady rain of bullets across the portage in order to permit
the other canoes to come ashore.  When the fog lifted, baggage and
canoes lay scattered on the shore.  Behind one barricade of logs lay
the French and Algonquins; behind another, the Iroquois; and woe betide
the warrior who showed his head or dared to cross the open.  All day
the warriors kept up their cross fire.  Thirteen Algonquins had
perished, and the French were only waiting a chance to abandon the
voyage.  Luckily, that night was pitch-dark.  The Algonquin leader blew
a long low call through his birch trumpet.  All hands rallied and
rushed for the boats to cross the river.  All the Frenchmen's baggage
had been lost.  Of the white adventurers every soul turned back but
Groseillers and Radisson.

The Algonquins now made up in caution what they had at first lacked.
They voyaged only by night and hid by day.  No camp fires were kindled.
No muskets were fired even for game; and the paddlers were presently
reduced to food of _tripe de roche_--green moss scraped from rocks.
Birch canoes could not cross Lake Huron in storm; so the Indians kept
close to the south shore of Georgian Bay, winding among the pink
granite islands, past the ruined Jesuit missions across to the Straits
of Mackinac and on down Lake Michigan to Green Bay.

{106} "But our mind was not to stay here," relates Radisson, "but to
know the remotest people."  Sometime between April and July of 1659 the
two white men had followed the Indian hunters across what is now the
state of Wisconsin to "a mighty river like the St. Lawrence."  They had
found the Mississippi, first of white men to view the waters since the
treasure-seeking Spaniards of the south crossed the river.  They had
penetrated the Unknown.  They had discovered the Great Northwest--a
world boundlessly vast; so vast no man forever after in the history of
the human race need be dispossessed of his share of the earth.
Something of the importance of the discovery seems to have impressed
Radisson; for he speaks of the folly of the European nations fighting
for sterile, rocky provinces when here is land enough for all--land
enough to banish poverty.

The two Frenchmen's wanderings with the tribes of the prairie--whether
those tribes were Omahas or Iowas or Mandanes or Mascoutins or
Sioux--cannot be told here.  It would fill volumes.  I have told the
story fully elsewhere.  By spring of 1660 Radisson and Groseillers are
back at Sault Ste. Marie, having gathered wealth of beaver peltries
beyond the dreams of avarice; but scouts have come to the Sault with
ominous news--news of one thousand Iroquois braves on the warpath to
destroy every settlement in New France.  Hourly, daily, weekly, have
Quebec and Three Rivers and Montreal been awaiting the blow.

The Algonquins refuse to go down to Quebec with Radisson and
Groseillers.  "Fools," shouts Radisson in full assembly of their chiefs
squatting round a council fire, "are you going to allow the Iroquois to
destroy you as they destroyed the Hurons?  How are you going to fight
the Iroquois unless you come down to Quebec for guns?  Do you want to
see your wives and children slaves?  For my part, I prefer to die like
a man rather than live a slave."

The chiefs were shamed out of their cowardice.  Five hundred young
warriors undertook to conduct the two white men down to Quebec.  They
embarked at once, scouts to the fore reconnoitering all portages, and
guards on duty wherever the {107} boats landed.  A few Iroquois braves
were seen near the Long Sault Rapids, but they took to their heels in
such evident fright that Radisson was puzzled to know what had become
of the one thousand braves on the warpath.  Carrying the beaver pelts
along the portage so they could be used as shields in case of attack,
the Algonquins came to the foot of the Long Sault Rapids near Montreal,
and saw plainly what had happened to the invading warriors.  A
barricade of logs the shape of a square fort stood on the shore.  From
the pickets hung the scalps of dead Indians and on the sands lay the
charred remains of white men.  Every tree for yards round was peppered
with bullet holes.  Here was a charred stake where some victim had been
tortured; there the smashed remnants of half-burnt canoes; and at
another point empty powder barrels.  A terrible battle had been waged
but a week before.  Radisson could trace, inside the barricade of logs,
holes scooped in the sand where the besieged, desperate with thirst,
had drunk the muddy water.  At intervals in the palisades openings had
been hacked, and these were blood stained, as if the scene of the
fiercest fighting.  Bark had been burnt from the logs in places, where
the assailants had set fire to the fort.

From Indian refugees at Montreal, Radisson learned details of the
fight.  It was the battle most famous in early Canadian annals--the
Long Sault.  All winter Quebec, Three Rivers, and Montreal had cowered
in terror of the coming Iroquois.  In imagination the beleaguered
garrisons foresaw themselves martyrs of Mohawk ferocity.  It was
learned that seven hundred of the Iroquois warriors were hovering round
the Richelieu opposite Three Rivers.  The rest of the braves had passed
the winter man-hunting in the Huron country, and were in spring
descending the Ottawa to unite with the lower band.

Week after week Quebec awaited the blow; but the blow never fell, for
at Montreal was a little band of seventeen heroes, led by a youth of
twenty-five,--Adam Dollard,--who longed to wipe out the stain of a
misspent boyhood by some glorious exploit in the service of the Holy

{108} When word came that the upper foragers were descending from the
country of the Hurons to unite with the lower Iroquois against
Montreal, Dollard proposed to go up the Ottawa with a picked party of
chosen fighters, waylay the Iroquois at the foot of the Long Sault
Rapids, and so prevent the attack on Montreal.  Sixteen young men
volunteered to join him.  Charles Le Moyne, now acting as interpreter
at Montreal, begged the young heroes to delay till reënforcements could
be obtained: seventeen Frenchmen against five hundred Mohawks meant
certain death; but delay meant risk, and Dollard coveted nothing more
than a death of glory.  At the chapel of the Hôtel Dieu the young
heroes made what they knew would certainly be their last confession,
bade eternal farewell to friends, and with crushed corn for provisions
set out in canoes for the upper Ottawa.  May 1, they came to the foot
of the Long Sault.  Here a barricade of logs had been erected in some
skirmish the year before, and here, too, was the usual camping place of
the Iroquois as their canoes came bounding down the swift waters of the
Ottawa.  Dollard and his brave boys landed, slung their kettles for the
night meal, and sent scouts upstream to forewarn when the Iroquois
came.  The night was passed in prayer.  Next day arrived unexpected
reënforcements.  Two bands of forty Hurons and four Algonquins, under a
brave Huron convert of the Christian Islands, had asked Maisonneuve's
permission to join Dollard and wreak their pent vengeance on the
Mohawks.  Early one morning the scouts reported five Iroquois canoes
coming slowly downstream, and two hundred more warriors behind.  There
was not even care to bring a supply of water inside the barricade or
remove kettles from the sticks.  Posted in ambush, the young soldiers
fired as soon as the first canoes came within range.  This put the rest
of the Iroquois on guard.  The whites rushed for the shelter of their
barricade.  The Indians dashed to erect a fort of their own.  Inside
Dollard's palisades all was activity.  Cracks were plastered up with
mud between logs, four marksmen with double stands of arms posted at
each loophole, and a big musketoon leveled straight for the {109}
Iroquois redoubt.  The Iroquois rushed out yelling like fiends, and
jumping sideways as they advanced, to avoid becoming targets; but the
scattering fire of the musketoon caught them full abreast and a Seneca
chief fell dead.  The Iroquois then broke up Dollard's canoes and tried
to set fire to the logs; but again the musketoon's scattering bullets
mowed a swath of death in the advancing ranks, and for a second time
the red warriors sought shelter behind the logs.  Probably to obtain
truce till they could send word to the other warriors on the Richelieu,
the Iroquois then hung out a flag of parley; but the Huron chief knew
what peace with an Iroquois meant.  He it was, on the Christian
Islands, who, when the Iroquois had proposed a similar parley for the
purpose of massacring the Hurons, invited their chiefs into the Huron
camp and brained them for their treachery.  Dollard's band made answer
to the flag hoisted above the Iroquois pickets by rushing out, securing
the head of the Seneca chief, and elevating it on a pike above their

But as the fight went on, the whites had to have water, and a few
rushed for the river to fill kettles.  This rejoiced the hearts of the
Iroquois.  They could guess if the whites were short of water, it only
required more warriors to surround the barricade completely and compel
surrender.  Scouts had meanwhile gone for the Iroquois at Richelieu;
and on the fifth day of the siege a roar, gathering volume as it
approached, told Dollard that the seven hundred warriors were coming
through the forest.  Among the newcomers were Huron renegades, who
approached within speaking distance of the fort and called out for the
Hurons to save themselves from death by surrender.  Death was plainly
inevitable, and all the Hurons but the chief deserted.  This reduced
Dollard's band, from sixty to twenty.  The whites were now weak from
lack of food and sleep; but for three more days and nights the marksmen
and musketoon plied such deadly aim at the assailants that the Iroquois
actually held a council whether they should retire.  The Iroquois
chiefs argued that it would disgrace the nation forever if one thousand
of their warriors were to retire before a handful of beardless white
boys.  {110} Solemnly the bundle of war sticks was thrown on the
ground.  Then each warrior willing to go on with the siege picked up a
stick.  The chiefs chose first and the rest were shamed into doing
likewise.  Inside the fort, Dollard's men were at the last extremities.
Blistered and blackened with powder smoke, the fevered men were half
delirious from lack of sleep and water.  Some fell to their knees and
prayed.  Others staggered with sleep where they stood.  Others had not
strength to stand and sank, muttering prayers, to their knees.  The
Iroquois were adopting new tactics.  They could not reach the palisades
in the face of the withering fire from the musketoon, so they
constructed a movable palisade of trees, behind which marched the
entire band of warriors.  In vain Dollard's marksmen aimed their
bullets at the front carriers.  Where one fell another stepped in his
place.  Desperate, Dollard resolved on a last expedient.  Some accounts
say he took a barrel of powder; others, that he wrapped powder in a
huge bole of birch bark.  Putting a light to this, he threw it with all
his might; but his strength had failed; the dangerous projectile fell
back inside the barricade, exploding; marksmen were driven from their
places.  A moment later the Iroquois were inside the barricade
screeching like demons.  They found only three Frenchmen alive; and so
great was the Mohawk rage to be foiled of victims that they fell on the
Huron renegades in their own ranks and put them to death on the spot.

Such was the Battle of the Long Sault of which Radisson saw the scars
on his way down the Ottawa.  It saved New France.  If seventeen boys
could fight in this fashion, how--the Iroquois asked--would a fort full
of men fight?  A few days later Radisson was conducted in triumph
through the streets of Quebec and personally welcomed by the new
governor, d'Argenson.

It can well be imagined that Radisson's account of the vast new lands
discovered by him aroused enthusiasm at Quebec.  Among the Crees,
Radisson and Groseillers had heard of that Sea of the North--Hudson
Bay--to which Champlain had {111} tried to go by way of the Ottawa.
The Indians had promised to conduct the two Frenchmen overland to the
North Sea; but Radisson deemed it wise not to reveal this fact lest
other voyageurs should forestall them.  Somehow the secret leaked out.
Either Groseillers told it or his wife dropped some hint of it to her
father confessor; but the two explorers were amazed to receive official
orders to conduct the Jesuits to the North Sea by way of the Saguenay.
They refused point-blank to go as subordinates on any expedition.  The
fur trade was at this time regulated by license.  Any one who proceeded
to the woods without license was liable to imprisonment, the galleys
for life, death if the offense were repeated.  Radisson and Groseillers
asked for a license to go north in 1661.  D'Avaugour, a bluff soldier
who had become governor, would grant it only on condition of receiving
half the profits.  Groseillers and Radisson set off by night without a

[Illustration: TITLE-PAGE--JESUIT RELATION OF 1662-1663]

{112} This time the Indian canoes struck off into Lake Superior instead
of Lake Michigan, and coasted that billowy inland sea with its iron
shore and shadowy forests.  On the northwest side of the lake,
somewhere between Duluth and Fort William, the explorers joined the
Crees, and proceeded northwestward with them, hunting along that Indian
trail to become famous as the fur traders' highway--from Lake Superior
to the Lake of the Woods.  The first white man's fort built west of the
Great Lakes, the terrible famine that winter, and the visits of the
Sioux--are all a story in themselves.  Spring found the explorers
following the Crees over the height of land from Lake Superior to
Hudson Bay.  As soon as the ice loosened, dugouts were launched, and
the voyageurs began that hardest of all canoe trips in America, through
the forest hinterland of Ontario.  Here the rivers were a stagnant
marsh, with outlet hidden by dankest forest growth where the light of
the sun never penetrated.  There the waters swollen by spring thaw and
broken by the ice jam whirled the {113} boats into rapids before the
paddlers realized.  There was wading to mid-waist in ice water.  There
were nights when camp was made on water-soaked moss.  There were days
when the windfall compelled the canoemen to take the canoes out of the
water and carry them half the time.  "At last," writes Radisson, "we
came to the sea, where we found an old house all demolished and
battered with bullets.  The Crees told us about Europeans being here;
and we went from isle to isle all that summer."  At this time the
canoes must have been coasting the south shore of James Bay, headed
east; for Radisson presently explains that they came to a river, which
rose in a lake near the source of the Saguenay--namely Rupert River.
What was the old house battered with bullets?  Was it Hudson's winter
fort of 1610-1611?  The Indians of Rupert River to this day have
legends of Hudson having come back to his fort when cast away by the

[Illustration: THE JESUIT MAP OF LAKE SUPERIOR  (From the Relation of

The furs that Radisson and Groseillers brought back from the north this
time were worth fabulous wealth.  The cargo saved New France from
bankruptcy; but the explorers had defied both Church and Governor, and
all the greedy monopolists of Quebec fell on Radisson and Groseillers
with jealous fury.  They were fined $20,000 to build a fort at Three
Rivers, though given permission to inscribe their coats of arms on the
gate.  A $30,000 fine went to the public treasury of New France, and a
tax of $70,000 was imposed by the Farmers of the Revenue.  Of the total
cargo there was left to Radisson and Groseillers only $20,000.

Disgusted, the two explorers personally appealed to the Court of
France; but there the monopolists were all-powerful, and justice was
denied.  They tried to induce some of the fishing fleet off Cape Breton
to venture to the North Sea; but there the monopolists' malign
influence was again felt.  They were accused of having broken the laws
of Quebec.  Zechariah Gillam, a sea captain of Boston, who chanced to
be at Port Royal, offered them his vessel for a voyage to Hudson Bay;
but when the {114} doughty captain came to the ice-locked straits, his
courage failed and he refused to enter.  Finally, at Port Royal, with
the last of their meager and dwindling capital, they hired two ships
for a voyage; but one was wrecked on Sable Island while fishing for
supplies, and instead of sailing for Hudson Bay in 1665, Radisson and
Groseillers were summoned to Boston in a lawsuit over the lost vessel.

In Boston they met commissioners of the English government and were
invited to lay their plans before Charles II, King of England.  At last
the tide of fortune seemed to be turning.  Sailing with Sir George
Carterett, after pirate raid and shipwreck, they reached London to find
the plague raging, and were ordered to Windsor, where Charles received
them, recommended their venture to Prince Rupert, and provided 2 pounds
a week each for their living expenses.

[Illustration: Charles II]

From being penniless outcasts, Radisson and Groseillers suddenly
wakened to find themselves famous.  Groseillers seems to have kept in
the background, but Radisson, the younger man, enjoyed the full blaze
of glory, was seen in the King's box at the theater, and was presently
paying furious court to Mistress Mary Kirke, daughter of Sir John
Kirke, whose ancestors had captured Quebec.  What with war and the
plague, it was 1668 before the English Admiralty could loan the two
ships _Eaglet_ and _Nonsuch_ for a voyage to Hudson Bay.  The expense
was to be defrayed by a band of {115} friends known as the "Gentlemen
Adventurers of England Trading to Hudson Bay," subscribing so much
stock in cash, provision, and goods for trade.  Radisson's ship, the
_Eaglet_, was driven back, damaged by storm; but the other, under
Groseillers, went on to Hudson Bay, where the marks set up on the
overland voyage were found at Rupert River, and a small fort was built
for trade.  During the delay Radisson was not idle in London.  He wrote
the journals of his first four voyages.  He married Mary Kirke--some
accounts say, eloped with her.  With the help of King Charles and
Prince Rupert he organized what is now known as the Hudson's Bay Fur
Company; for when Groseillers' ship returned in the fall of 1669, its
success in trade had been so great that the Adventurers at once applied
for a royal charter of exclusive monopoly in trade to all the regions,
land and sea, rivers and territories, adjoining Hudson Bay.  The
monopoly of the Hudson's Bay Company to the Great Northwest was granted
by King Charles in May, 1670.

Here, then, was the situation.  England was intrenched south of the St.
Lawrence.  England was taking armed possession of all lands bordering
on Hudson Bay and such other lands as the Adventurers might find.
Wedged between was New France with a population of less than six
thousand.  If France could have foreseen what her injustice to two poor
adventurers would cost the nation in blood and money, it would have
paid her to pension Radisson like a prince of the blood royal.

NOTE TO CHAPTER VI.  The viceroys of New France were shifted so
frequently that little record remains of several but their names.  The
official list of the governors under the French régime stands as

Samuel de Champlain, died at Quebec, Christmas, 1635.

Marc Antoine de Chasteaufort, _pro tem_.

Charles Huault de Montmagny, 1636.

Louis d'Ailleboust of the Montreal Crusaders, 1648.

Jean de Lauzon, 1651.

Charles de Lauzon-Charny (son), _pro tem_.

Louis d'Ailleboust, 1657.

Viscount d'Argenson, 1658, a young man who quarreled with Jesuits.

Viscount d'Avagour, 1661, a bluff soldier, who also quarreled with

De Mezy, 1663, appointed by Jesuits' influence, but quarreled with them.

{116} Marquis de Tracy, 1663, who was viceroy of all French possessions
in America, and really sent out to act as general.

De Courcelle, 1665, who acts as governor under De Tracy and succeeds

Frontenac, 1672, was recalled through influence of Jesuits, whose
interference he would not tolerate in civil affairs.

De La Barre, 1682, an impotent, dishonest old man, who came to mend his

De Brisay de Denonville, 1685.

Frontenac, 1689.

De Calliere, 1699.

Marquis de Vaudreuil, 1703.

Charles le Moyne, Baron de Longeuil, 1725, son of Le Moyne, the famous
fighter and interpreter of Montreal; brother of Le Moyne d'Iberville,
the commander.

Marquis de Beauharnois, 1726.

Count de la Galissoniere, 1747.

Marquis de la Jonquiere, 1749.

Charles le Moyne, Baron de Longeuil, 1752, son of former Governor.


Marquis de Vaudreuil, 1755, descendant of first Vaudreuil.



FROM 1672 TO 1688

The fur fairs of Montreal--Customs of people--Shiploads of brides--The
Iroquois and De Tracy--Who first found Ontario?--Through western
Ontario--Up the Great Lakes--Marquette and Jolliet--Frontenac and La
Salle--La Salle rouses enemies--La Salle descends the Mississippi--Death
of La Salle

While Radisson and other coureurs of the woods were ranging the wilds
from the St. Lawrence to the Mississippi and from the Great Lakes to
Hudson Bay, changes were almost revolutionizing the little colony of New
France.  No longer was everything subservient to missions.  When
Marguerite Bourgeoys and Jeanne Mance, of Ville-Marie Mission at
Montreal, went home to France to bring out more colonists in 1659, they
learned that the founder of their mission--Dauversière, the tax
collector--had gone bankrupt.  Montreal was penniless, though sixty more
men and thirty-two girls were accompanying the nuns out this very year.
The Sulpician priests had from the first been ardent friends of the
Montrealers.  The priests of St. Sulpice now assumed charge of Montreal.
Though "God's Penny" was still collected at the fairs and market places
of Old France for the conversion of Indians at Mont Royal, the fur trade
was rapidly changing the character of the place.

Afraid of the Iroquois raiders, the tribes of the Up-Country now flocked
to Montreal instead of Quebec, where the traders met them annually at the
great Fur Fairs.

No more picturesque scene exists in Canada's past than these Fur Fairs.
Down the rapids of the Ottawa and the St. Lawrence bounded the canoes of
the Indian hunters, Hurons and Pottawatomies from Lake Michigan, Crees
and Ojibways from Lake Superior, Iroquois and Eries and Neutrals from
what is now the Province of Ontario, the northern Indians in long birch
canoes light as paper, the Indians of Ontario in dugouts of oak and
walnut.  The Fur Fair usually took place between June and August; and the
Viceroy, magnificent in red cloak faced with velvet and ornamented with
gold braid, came up from Quebec {118} for the occasion and occupied a
chair of state under a marquee erected near the Indian tents.  Wigwams
then went up like mushrooms, the Huron and Iroquois tents of sewed bark
hung in the shape of a square from four poles, the tepees of the Upper
Indians made of birch and buffalo hides, hung on poles crisscrossed at
the top to a peak, spreading in wide circle to the ground.  Usually the
Fur Fair occupied a great common between St. Paul Street and the river.
Furs unpacked, there stalked among the tents great sachems glorious in
robes of painted buckskin garnished with wampum, Indian children stark
naked, young braves flaunting and boastful, wearing headdresses with
strings of eagle quills reaching to the ground, each quill signifying an
enemy taken.  Then came "the peddlers,"--the fur merchants,--unpacking
their goods to tempt the Indians, men of the colonial noblesse famous in
history, the Fôrests and Le Chesnays and Le Bers.  Here, too, gorgeous in
finery, bristling with firearms, were the bushrovers, the interpreters,
the French voyageurs, who had to come out of the wilds once every two
years to renew their licenses to trade.  There was Charles Le Moyne, son
of an innkeeper of Dieppe, who had come to Montreal as interpreter and
won such wealth as trader that his family became members of the French
aristocracy.  Two of his descendants became governors of Canada; and the
history of his sons is the history of Canada's most heroic age.  There
was Louis Jolliet, who had studied for the Jesuit priesthood but turned
fur trader among the tribes of Lake Michigan.  There was Daniel Greysolon
Duluth, a man of good birth, ample means, and with the finest house in
Montreal, who had turned bushrover, gathered round him a band of three or
four hundred lawless, dare-devil French hunters, and now roamed the woods
from Detroit halfway to Hudson Bay, swaying the Indians in favor of
France and ruling the wilds, sole lord of the wilderness.  There were
Groseillers and Radisson and a shy young man of twenty-five who had
obtained a seigniory from the Sulpicians at Lachine--Robert Cavelier de
La Salle.  Sometimes, too, Father Marquette came down with his Indians
from the missions on Lake Superior.  Maisonneuve, {119} too, was there,
grieving, no doubt, to see this Kingdom of Heaven, which he had set up on
earth, becoming more and more a kingdom of this world.  Later, when the
Hundred Associates lost their charter and Canada became a Royal Province
governed directly by the Crown, Maisonneuve was deprived of the
government of Montreal and retired to die in obscurity in Paris.  Louis
d'Ailleboust, Governor of Montreal when Maisonneuve is absent, Governor
at Quebec when state necessities drag him from religious devotion, moves
also in the gay throng of the Fur Fair.  In later days is a famous
character at the Fur Fairs--La Motte Cadillac of Detroit, bushrover and
gentleman like Duluth, but prone to break heads when he comes to town
where the wine is good.

[Illustration: PLAN OF MONTREAL IN 1672]

Trade was regulated by royal license.  Only twenty-five canoes a year
were allowed to go to the woods with three men in each, and a license was
good for only two years.  Fines, branding, the galleys for life, death,
were the penalties for those who traded without license; but that did not
prevent more than one thousand young Frenchmen running off to the woods
to live like Indians.  In fact, there was no other way for the youth of
New {120} France to earn a living.  Penniless young noblemen, criminals
escaping the law, the sons of the poorest, all were on the same footing
in the woods.  He who could persuade a merchant to outfit him for trade
disappeared in the wilds; and if he came back at all, came back with
wealth of furs and bought off punishment, "wearing sword and lace and
swaggering as if he were a gentleman," the annals of the day complain;
and a long session in the confessional box relieved the prodigal's
conscience from the sins of a life in the woods.  If my young gentleman
were rich enough, the past was forgotten, and he was now on the highroad
to distinguished service and perhaps a title.


In the early days a beaver skin could be bought for a needle or a bell or
a tin mirror; and in spite of all the priests could do to prevent it,
brandy played a shameful part in the trade.  In vain the priests preached
against it, and the bishop thundered anathemas.  The evils of the brandy
traffic were apparent to all--the Fur Fairs became a bedlam of crime; but
when the Governor called in all the traders to confer on the subject, it
was plain that if the Indians did _not_ obtain liquor from the French,
they would go on down with their furs to the English of New York, and the
French Governor was afraid to forbid the evil.


The Fur Fair over, the Governor departed for Quebec; the Indians, for
their own land; the bushrovers, for their far wanderings; and there
settled over Montreal for another year drowsy quiet but for the chapel
bells of St. Sulpice and Ville Marie and Bon Secours--the Chapel of Ste.
Anne's Good Help--built close on the verge of the river, that the
voyageurs coming and going might cross themselves as they passed her
spire; drowsy peace but for the chapel chimes ringing . . . ringing . . .
ringing . . . morning . . . noon . . . and night . . . lilting and
singing and calling all New France to prayers.  As the last canoe glided
up the river, and sunset silence fell on Montreal, there knelt before the
dimly lighted altars of the chapels, shadow figures--Maisonneuve praying
for his mission; D'Ailleboust, asking Heaven's blessing on the new shrine
down at St. Anne de Beaupré near Quebec, which he had built for the
miraculous {121} healing of physical ills; Dollier de Casson, priest of
the wilds, manly and portly and strong, wilderness fighter for the Cross.
Then the organ swells, and the chant rolls out, and till the next Fur
Fair Montreal is again a mission.

When New France becomes a Crown Colony, the government consists solely
and only of the Sovereign Council, to whom the King transmits his will.
This council consists of the Governor, his administrative officer called
the "Intendant," the bishop, and several of the inhabitants of New France
nominated by the other members of the council.  Of elections there are
absolutely none.  Popular meetings are forbidden.  New France is a
despotism, with the Sovereign Council representing the King.  Domestic
disputes, religious quarrels, civil cases, crimes,--all come before the
Sovereign Council.  Clients could plead their own cases without a fee, or
hire a notary.  Cases are tried by the Sovereign Council.  Laws are
passed by it.  Fines are imposed and sentences pronounced; but as the
Sovereign Council met only once a week, the management of affairs fell
chiefly to the Intendant, whose palace became known as the Place of
Justice.  Of systematic taxation there was none.  One fourth of all
beaver went for public revenue.  Part of Labrador was reserved as the
King's Domain for trading, and sometimes a duty of ten per cent was
charged on liquor brought into the colony.  The stroke of the Sovereign
Council's pen could create a law, and the stroke of the King's pen annul
it.  Laws are passed forbidding men, who are not nobles, assuming the
title of Esquire or Sieur on penalty of what would be a $500 fine.  "Wood
is not to be piled on the streets."  "Chimneys are to be built large
enough to admit a chimney sweep."  "Only shingles of oak and walnut may
be used in towns where there is danger of fire."  Swearing is punished by
fines, by the disgrace of being led through the streets at the end of a
rope and begging pardon on knees at the church steps, by branding if the
offense be repeated.  Murderers are punished by being shot, or exposed in
an iron cage on the cliffs above the St. Lawrence till death {122} comes.
No detail is too small for the Sovereign Council's notice.  In fact, a
case is on record where a Mademoiselle André is expelled from the colony
for flirting so outrageously with young officers that she demoralizes the
garrison.  Mademoiselle avoids the punishment by bribing one of the
officers on the ship where she is placed, and escaping to land in man's

The people of New France were regulated in every detail of their lives by
the Church as well as the Sovereign Council.  For trading brandy to the
Indians, Bishop Laval thunders excommunication at delinquents; and Bishop
St. Vallière, his successor, publicly rebukes the dames of New France for
wearing low-necked dresses, and curling their hair, and donning gay
ribbons in place of bonnets.  "The vanity of dress among women becomes a
greater scandal than before," he complains.  "They affect immodest
headdress, with heads uncovered or only concealed under a collection of
ribbons, laces, curls, and other vanities."

[Illustration: LAVAL  (After the portrait in Laval University, Quebec)]

The laws came from the King and Sovereign Council.  The enforcement of
them depended on the Intendant.  As long as he was a man of integrity,
New France might live as happily as a family under a despotic but wise
father.  It was when the Intendant became corrupt that the system fell to
pieces.  {123} Of all the intendants of New France, one name stands
preeminent, that of Jean Talon, who came to Canada, aged forty, in 1665,
at the time the country became a Crown Province.  One of eleven children
of Irish origin, Talon had been educated at the Jesuit College of Paris,
and had served as an intendant in France before coming to Canada.
Officially he was to stand between the King and the colony, to transmit
the commands of one and the wants of the other.  He was to stand between
the Governor and the colony, to watch that the Governor did not overstep
his authority and that the colony obeyed the laws.  He was to stand
between the Church and the colony, to see that the Church did not usurp
the prerogatives of the Governor and that the people were kept in the
path of right living without having their natural liberties curtailed.
He was, in a word, to accept the thankless task of taking all the cuffs
from the King and the kicks from the colony, all the blame of whatever
went amiss and no credit for what went well.

When Talon came to Canada there were less than two thousand people in the
colony.  He wrote frantically to His Royal Master for colonists.  "We
cannot depeople France to people Canada," wrote the King; but from his
royal revenue he set aside money yearly to send men to Canada as
soldiers, women as wives.  In 1671 one hundred and sixty-five girls were
sent out to be wedded to the French youth.  A year later came one hundred
and fifty more.  Licenses would not be given to the wood rovers for the
fur trade unless they married.  Bachelors were fined unless they quickly
chose a wife from among the King's girls.  Promotion was withheld from
the young ensigns and cadets in the army unless they found brides.
Yearly the ships brought girls whom the curés of France had carefully
selected in country parishes.  Yearly Talon gave a bounty to the
middle-aged duenna who had safely chaperoned her charges across seas to
the convents of Quebec and Montreal, where the bashful suitors came to
make choice.  "We want country girls, who can work," wrote the Intendant;
and girls who could work the King sent, instructing Talon to mate as many
as he {124} could to officers of the Carignan Regiment, so that the
soldiers would be likely to turn settlers.  Results: by 1674 Canada had a
population of six thousand seven hundred; by 1684, of nearly twelve
thousand, not counting the one thousand bush lopers who roamed the woods
and married squaws.

Between Acadia and Quebec lay wilderness.  Jean Talon opened a road
connecting the two far-separated provinces.  The Sovereign Council had
practically outlawed the bush lopers.  Talon pronounced trade free, and
formed them into companies of bush fighters--defenders of the colony.
Instead of being wild-wood bandits, men like Duluth at Lake Superior and
La Motte Cadillac at Detroit became commanders, holding vast tribes loyal
to France.  For years there had been legends of mines.  Talon opened
mines at Gaspé and Three Rivers and Cape Breton.  All clothing had
formerly been imported from France.  Talon had the inhabitants
taught--and they badly needed it, for many of their children ran naked as
Indians--to weave their own clothes, make rugs, tan leather, grow straw
for hats,--all of which they do to this day, so that you may enter a
habitant house and not find a single article except saints' images, a
holy book, and perhaps a fiddle, which the habitant has not himself made.
"The Jesuits assume too much authority," wrote the King.  Talon lessened
their power by inviting the Recollets to come back to Canada and by
encouraging the Sulpicians.  Instead of outlawing young Frenchmen for
deserting to the English, Talon asked the King to grant titles of
nobility to those who were loyal, like the Godefrois and the Denis' and
the Le Moynes and young Chouart Groseillers, son of Radisson's
brother-in-law, so that there sprang up a Canadian noblesse which was as
graceful with the frying pan of a night camp fire in the woods as with
the steps of a stately dance in the governor's ballroom.  Above all did
Talon encourage the bush-rovers in their far wanderings to explore new
lands for France.

New France had not forgotten the Iroquois treachery to the French colony
at Onondaga.  Iroquois raid and ambuscade kept the hostility of these
sleepless foes fresh in French memory.  {125} When Jean Talon came to
Canada as intendant, there had come as governor Courcelle, with the
Marquis de Tracy as major general of all the French forces in
America,--the West Indies as well as Canada.  The Carignan Regiment of
soldiers seasoned in European campaigns had been sent to protect the
colonists from Indian raid; and it was determined to strike the Iroquois
Confederacy a blow that would forever put the fear of the French in their

Richelieu River was still the trail of the Mohawk warrior; and De Tracy
sent his soldiers to build forts on this stream at Sorel and
Chambly--named after officers of the regiment.  January, 1666, Courcelle,
the Governor, set out on snowshoes to invade the Iroquois Country with
five hundred men, half Canadian bushrovers, half regular soldiers.  By
some mistake the snow-covered trail to the Mohawks was missed, the wrong
road followed, and the French Governor found himself among the Dutch at
Schenectady.  March rains had set in.  Through the leafless forests in
driving sleet and rain retreated the French.  Sixty had perished from
exposure and disease before Courcelle led his men back to the Richelieu.
The Mohawk warriors showed their contempt for this kind of white-man
warfare by raiding some French hunters on Lake Champlain and killing a
young nephew of De Tracy.

Nevertheless, on second thought, twenty-four Indian deputies proceeded to
Quebec with the surviving captives to sue for peace.  De Tracy was ready
for them.  Solemnly the peace pipe had been puffed and solemnly the peace
powwow held.  The Mohawk chief was received in pompous state at the
Governor's table.  Heated with wine and mistaking French courtesy for
fear, the warrior grew boastful at the white chief's table.

"This is the hand," he exclaimed, proudly stretching out his right arm,
"this is the hand that split the head of your young man, O Onontio!"

"Then by the power of Heaven," thundered the Marquis de Tracy, springing
to his feet ablaze with indignation, "it is the hand that shall never
split another head!"

{126} Forthwith the body of the great Mohawk chief dangled a scarecrow to
the fowls of the air; and the other terrified deputies tore breathlessly
back for the Iroquois land with such a story as one may guess.

With thirteen hundred men and three hundred boats the Marquis de Tracy
and Courcelle set out from the St. Lawrence in October for the Iroquois
cantons.  Charles Le Moyne, the Montreal bushrover, led six hundred
wild-wood followers in their buckskin coats and beaded moccasins, with
hair flying to the wind like Indians; and one hundred Huron braves were
also in line with the Canadians.  The rest of the forces were of the
Carignan Regiment.  Dollier de Casson, the Sulpician priest, powerful of
frame as De Tracy himself, marched as chaplain.

[Illustration: A MAP IN THE RELATION OF 1662-1663  (This map includes
Lake Ontario and the Iroquois Country.  It shows the relative positions
of the Five Nations and Fort d'Orange (Albany).  It also gives plans of
the forts on the Richelieu and shows their location)]

Never had such an expedition been seen before on the St. Lawrence.  Drums
beat reveille at peep of dawn.  Fifes outshrilled the roar of rapids, and
stately figures in gold braid {127} and plumed hats glided over the
waters of the Richelieu among the painted forests of the frost-tinted
maples.  Indians have a way of conveying news that modern trappers
designate as "the moccasin telegram."  "Moccasin telegram" now carried
news of the coming army to the Iroquois villages, and the alarm ran like
wildfire from Mohawk to Onondaga and from Onondaga to Seneca.  When the
French army struck up the Mohawk River, and to beat of drum charged in
full fury out of the rain-dripping forests across the stubble fields to
attack the first palisaded village, they found it desolate, deserted,
silent as the dead, though winter stores crammed the abandoned houses and
wildest confusion showed that the warriors had fled in panic.  So it was
with the next village and the next.  The Iroquois had stampeded in blind
flight, and the only show of opposition was a wild whoop here and there
from ambush.  De Tracy took possession of the land for France, planted a
cross, and ordered the villages set on fire.  For a time, at least, peace
was assured with the Iroquois.

Who first discovered the Province of Ontario?  Before Champlain had
ascended the Ottawa, or the Jesuits established their missions south of
Lake Huron, young men sent out as wood rovers had canoed up the Ottawa
and gone westward to the land of the Sweet Water Seas.  Was it Vignau,
the romancer, or Nicolet, the coureur de bois, or the boy Etienne Brulé,
who first saw what has been called the Garden of Canada, the rolling
meadows and wooded hills that lie wedged in between the Upper and the
Lower of the Great Lakes?  Tradition says it was Brulé; but however that
may be, little was known of what is now Ontario except in the region of
the old Jesuit missions around Georgian Bay.  It was not even known that
Michigan and Huron were _two_ lakes.  The Sulpicians of Montreal had a
mission at the Bay of Quinte on Lake Ontario, and the south shore of the
lake, where it touched on Iroquois territory, was known to the Jesuits;
but from Quinte Bay to Detroit--a distance equal to that from New York to
Chicago, or London to Italy--was an unknown world.

{128} But to return to the explorations which Jean Talon, the Intendant,
had set in motion--

When Dollier de Casson, the soldier who had become Sulpician priest,
returned from the campaign against the Iroquois, he had been sent as a
missionary to the Nipissing Country.  There he heard among the Indians of
a shorter route to the Great River of the West--the Mississippi--than by
the Ottawa and Sault Ste. Marie.  The Indians told him if he would ascend
the St. Lawrence to Lake Ontario and Lake Erie, he could portage overland
to the Beautiful River,--Ohio,--which would carry him down to the

The Sulpicians had been encouraged by Talon in order to eclipse and hold
in check the Jesuits.  They were eager to send their missionaries to the
new realm of this Great River, and hurried Dollier de Casson down to
Quebec to obtain Intendant Talon's permission.

There, curiously enough, Dollier de Casson met Cavalier de La Salle, the
shy young seigneur of La Chine, intent on almost the same aim,--to
explore the Great River.  Where the Sulpicians had granted him his
seigniory above Montreal he had built a fort, which soon won the nickname
of La Chine,--China,--because its young master was continually
entertaining Iroquois Indians within the walls, to question them of the
Great River, which might lead to China.

Governor Courcelle and Intendant Talon ordered the priest and young
seigneur to set out together on their explorations.  The Sulpicians were
to bear all expenses, buying back La Salle's lands to enable him to
outfit canoes with the money.  Father Galinée, who understood map making,
accompanied Dollier de Casson, and the expedition of seven birch canoes,
with three white men in each, and two dugouts with Seneca Indians, who
had been visiting La Salle, set out from Montreal on July 6, 1669.  Not a
leader in the party was over thirty-five years of age.  Dollier de
Casson, the big priest, was only thirty-three and La Salle barely
twenty-six.  Corn meal was carried as food.  For the rest, they were to
depend on chance shots.  With {129} numerous portages, keeping to the
south shore of the St. Lawrence because that was best known to the Seneca
guides, the canoes passed up Lake St. Louis and Lake St. Francis and
glided through the sylvan fairyland of the Thousand Islands, coming out
in August on Lake Ontario, "which," says Galinée, "appeared to us like a
great sea."  Striking south, they appealed to the Seneca Iroquois for
guides to the Ohio, but the Senecas were so intent on torturing some
prisoners recently captured, that they paid no heed to the appeal.  A
month was wasted, and the white men proceeded with Indian slaves for
guides, still along the south shore of the lake.

[Illustration: GALINÉE'S MAP OF THE GREAT LAKES, 1669  (The next oldest
chart to that of Champlain)]

At the mouth of Niagara River they could hear the far roar of the famous
falls, which Indian legend said "fell over rocks twice the height of the
highest pine tree."  The turbulent torrent of the river could not be
breasted, so they did not see the falls, but rounded on up Lake Ontario
to the region now near the city of Hamilton.  Here they had prepared to
portage overland to some stream that would bring them down to Lake Erie,
when, to their amazement, they learned from a passing Indian camp that
two Frenchmen were on their way down this very lake from searching copper
mines on Lake Superior.

{130} The two Frenchmen were Louis Jolliet, yet in his early twenties, to
become famous as an explorer of the Mississippi, and one Monsieur Jean
Peré, soldier of fortune, who was to set France and England by the ears
on Hudson Bay.  September 24, as La Salle and Dollier were dragging their
canoes through the autumn-colored sumacs of the swamp, there plunged from
among the russet undergrowth the two wanderers from the north,--Jolliet
and Peré, dumb with amazement to meet a score of men toiling through this
tenantless wilderness.  The two parties fell on each other's necks with
delight and camped together.  Jolliet told a story that set the
missionaries' zeal on fire and inflamed La Salle with mad eagerness to
pass on to the goal of his discoveries.  Jolliet and Peré had not found
the copper mine for Talon on Lake Superior, but they had learned two
important secrets from the Indians.  First, if Iroquois blocked the way
up the Ottawa, there was clear, easy water way down to Quebec by Lake
Huron and Lake Ste. Claire and Lake Erie.  Jolliet's guide had brought
them down this way, first of white men to traverse the Great Lakes, only
leaving them as they reached Lake Erie and advising them to portage
across up Grand River to avoid Niagara Falls.  Second, the Indians told
him the Ohio could be reached by way of Lake Erie.

Sitting round the camp fires near what is now Port Stanley, La Salle
secretly resolved to go on down to Quebec with Jolliet and rearrange his
plans independent of the missionaries.  The portaging through swamps had
affected La Salle's health, and he probably judged he could make quicker
time unaccompanied by missionaries.  As for Galinée and Dollier, when
they knelt in prayer that night, they fervently besought Heaven to let
them carry the Gospel of truth to those benighted heathen west of Lake
Michigan, of whom Jolliet told.  Dollier de Casson sent a letter by
Jolliet to Montreal, begging the Sulpicians to establish a mission near
what is now Toronto.  Early next morning an altar was laid on the propped
paddles of the canoes and solemn service held.  La Salle and his four
canoes went back to Montreal with Jolliet and Peré; Dollier and Galinée
coasted along the shores of Lake Erie westward.

{131} It was October.  The forests were leafless, the weather damp, the
lake too stormy for the frail canoes.  As game was plentiful, the priests
decided to winter on a creek near Port Dover.  Here log houses were
knocked up, and the servants dispersed moose hunting for winter supplies.
Then followed the most beautiful season of the year in the peninsula of
Ontario, Indian summer, dreamy warm days after the first cold, filling
the forest with a shimmer of golden light, the hills with heat haze,
while the air was odorous with smells of nuts and dried leaves and grapes
hanging thick from wild vines.  "It was," writes Galinée, "simply an
Earthly Paradise, the most beautiful region that ever I have seen in my
life, with open woods and meadows and rivers and game in plenty."  In
this Earthly Paradise the priests passed the winter, holding services
three times a week--"a winter that ought to be worth ten years of any
other kind of life" Dollier calculated, counting up masses and vespers
and matins.  Sometimes when the snow lay deep and the weird voices of the
wind hallooed with bugle sound through the lonely forest, the priests
listening inside fancied that they heard "the hunting of
Arthur,"--unearthly huntsmen coursing the air after unearthly game.

March 23 (Sunday), 1670, the company paraded down to Lake Erie from their
sheltered quarters, and, erecting a cross, took possession of this land
for France.  Then they launched their boats to ascend the other Sweet
Water Seas.  The preceding autumn the priests had lost some of their
baggage, and now, in camp near Point Pelee, a sweeping wave carried off
the packs in which were all the holy vessels and equipments for the
mission chapel.  They decided to go back to Montreal by way of Sault Ste.
Marie, and ascended to Lake Ste. Claire.  Game had been scarce for some
days, the weather tempestuous, and now the priests thought they had found
the cause.  On one of the rocks of Lake Ste. Claire was a stone, to which
the Indians offered sacrifices for safe passage on the lakes.  To the
priests the rude drawing of a face seemed graven images of
paganism,--signs of Satan, who had baffled their hunting and caused loss
{132} of their packs.  "I consecrated one of my axes to break this god of
stone, and, having yoked our canoes abreast, we carried the largest
pieces to the middle of the river and cast them in.  God immediately
rewarded us, for we killed a deer."  Following the east shore of Lake
Huron, the priests came, on May 25, to Sault Ste. Marie, where the
Jesuits Dablon and Marquette had a mission.  Three days late, they
embarked by way of the Ottawa for Montreal, where they arrived on June
18, 1670.

Meanwhile, what had become of Jolliet and Peré and La Salle?

They have no sooner reached Quebec with their report than Talon orders
St. Lusson to go north and take possession at Sault Ste. Marie of all
these unknown lands for France.  Jolliet accompanies St. Lusson.
Nicholas Perrot, a famous bushrover, goes along to summon the Indians,
and the ceremony takes place on June 14, 1671, in the presence of the
Jesuits at the Sault, by which the King of France is pronounced lord
paramount of all these regions.

When Jolliet comes down again to Quebec, he finds Count Frontenac has
come as governor, and Jean Talon, the Intendant, is sailing for France.
Before leaving, Talon has recommended Jolliet as a fit man to explore the
Great River of the West.  With him is commissioned Jacques Marquette, the
Jesuit, who has labored among the Indians west of Lake Superior.  The two
men set out in birch canoes, with smoked meat for provisions, from
Michilimackinac mission, May 17, 1673, for Green Bay, Lake Michigan.
Ascending Fox River on June 17, they induce the Mascoutin Indians, who
had years ago conducted Radisson by this same route, to pilot them across
the portage to the headwaters of the Wisconsin River.

Their way lies directly across that wooded lake region, which has in our
generation become the resort first of the lumberman, then of the
tourist,--a rolling, wooded region of rare sylvan beauty, park-like
forests interspersed with sky-colored lakes.  Six weeks from the time
they had left the Sault, Wisconsin River carried their canoe out on the
swift eddies of a mighty river {133} flowing south,--the Mississippi.
For the first time the boat of a Canadian voyageur glided down its waters.

Each night as the explorers landed to sleep under the stars, the tilted
canoe inverted with end on a log as roof in case of rain, Marquette fell
to knees and invoked the Virgin's aid on the expedition; and each morning
as Jolliet launched the boat out on the waters through the early mist, he
headed closely along shore on the watch for sign or footprint of Indian.

The river gathered volume as it rolled southward, carving the clay cliffs
of its banks in a thousand fantastic forms.  Where the bank was broken,
the prairies were seen in heaving seas of grass billowing to the wind
like water, herds of countless buffalo pasturing knee-deep.  To Marquette
and Jolliet, burning with enthusiasm, it seemed as if they were finding a
new world for France half as large as all Europe.  For two weeks not a
sail, not a canoe, not a soul did they see.  Then the river carried them
into the country of the Illinois, past Illinois Indians who wore French
clothing, and pictured rocks where the Indians had painted their sign
language.  There was no doubt now in the explorers' minds,--the
Mississippi did not lead to China but emptied in the Gulf of Mexico.  A
furious torrent of boiling muddy water pouring in on the right forewarned
the Missouri; and in a few more days they passed on the left the clear
current of Beautiful River,--the Ohio.

It was now midsummer.  The heat was heavy and humid.  Marquette's health
began to suffer, and the two explorers spread an awning of sailcloth
above the canoe as they glided with the current.  Towards the Arkansas,
Indians appeared on the banks, brandishing weapons of Spanish make.
Though Jolliet, with a peace pipe from the Illinois Indians, succeeded in
reassuring the hostiles, it was unsafe to go farther south.  They had
established the fact,--the Mississippi emptied into the Gulf of
Mexico,--and on July 17 turned back.  It was harder going against stream,
which did not mend Marquette's health; so when the Illinois Indians
offered to show them a shorter way to Lake Michigan, they followed up
Illinois River and crossed the Chicago portage {134} to Lake Michigan.
Jolliet went on down to Quebec with his report.  Marquette remained half
ill to establish missions in Michigan.  Here, traveling with his Indians
in 1675, the priest died of the malady contracted in the Mississippi
heat, and was buried in a lonely grave of the wildwood wilderness where
he had wandered.  Louis Jolliet married and settled down on his seigniory
of Anticosti Island.

Though he had as yet little to show for the La Chine estate, which he had
sacrificed, La Salle had not been idle, but was busy pushing French
dominion by another route to the Mississippi.

Count Frontenac had come to New France as all the viceroys
came--penniless, to mend his fortunes; and as the salary of the Governor
did not exceed $3000 a year, the only way to wealth was by the fur trade;
but which way to look for fur trade!  Hudson Bay, thanks to Radisson, was
in the hands of England.  Taudoussac was farmed out to the King.  The
merchants of Quebec and Three Rivers and Montreal absorbed all the furs
of the tribes from the Ottawa; and New England drained the Iroquois land.
There remained but one avenue of new trade, and that was west of the
Lakes, where Jolliet had been.

Taking only La Salle into his confidence, Frontenac issued a royal
mandate commanding all the officers and people of New France to
contribute a quota of men for the establishment of a fort on Lake
Ontario.  By June 28, 1673, the same year that Jolliet had been
dispatched for the Mississippi, there had gathered at La Chine, La
Salle's old seigniory near Montreal, four hundred armed men and one
hundred and twenty canoes, which Frontenac ordered painted gaudily in red
and blue.  With these the Governor moved in stately array up the St.
Lawrence, setting the leafy avenues of the Thousand Islands ringing with
trumpet and bugle, and sweeping across Lake Ontario in martial lines to
the measured stroke of a hundred paddles.

Long since, La Salle's scouts had scurried from canton to canton,
rallying the Iroquois to the council of great "Onontio."  At break of
day, July 13, while the sunrise was just bursting up {135} over the lake,
Frontenac, with soldiers drawn up under arms, himself in velvet cloak
laced with gold braid, met the chiefs of the Iroquois Confederacy at the
place to be known for years as Fort Frontenac, now known as Kingston, a
quiet little city at the entrance of Lake Ontario on the north shore.

[Illustration: ROBERT DE LA SALLE]

Ostensibly the powwow was to maintain peace.  In reality, it was to
attract the Iroquois, and all the tribes with whom they traded, away from
the English, down to Frontenac's new fort with their furs.  It is a
question if all the military pomp deceived a living soul.  Before the
Governor had set his sappers to work on the foundations of a fort, the
merchants of Montreal--the Le Bers and Le Moynes and Le Chesnayes and Le
Fôrests--were furious with jealousy.  Undoubtedly Fort Frontenac would be
the most valuable fur post in America.



Determined to have the support of the Court, where his wife was in high
favor, Count Frontenac dispatched La Salle to France in 1674 with letters
of strongest recommendation, which, no doubt, Jean Talon, the former
Intendant, indorsed on the spot.  La Salle's case was a strong one.  He
was to offer to found a line of forts establishing French dominion from
Lake Ontario to the valley of the Mississippi, which Jolliet had just
explored.  In return, he asked for patent of nobility and the grant of a
seigniory at Fort Frontenac; in other words, the monopoly of the furs
there, which would easily clear him $20,000 a year.  It has never been
proved, but one may suspect that his profits were to be divided with
Count Frontenac.  Both requests were at once granted; and La Salle came
back to a hornet's nest of enmity in Canada.  Space forbids to tell of
the means taken to defeat him; for, by promising to support Recollet
friars at his fort instead of Jesuits, La Salle had added {137} to the
enmity of the merchants, the hatred of the Jesuits.  Poison was put in
his food.  Iroquois were stirred up to hostility against him.

Meanwhile no enmity checks his ardor.  He has replaced the wooden walls
of Fort Frontenac with stone, mounted ten cannon, manned the fort with
twenty soldiers, maintained more than forty workmen, cleared one hundred
acres for crops, and in 1677 is off again for France to ask permission to
build another fort above Niagara.  This time, when La Salle comes out, he
is accompanied by a man famous in American annals, a soldier of fortune
from Italy, cousin of Duluth the bushrover, one Henry Tonty, a man with a
copper hand, his arm having been shattered in war, who presently comes to
have repute among the Indians as a great "medicine man," because blows
struck by that metal hand have a way of being effective.  By 1678 the
fort is built above Niagara.  By 1679 a vessel of forty-five tons and ten
cannon is launched on Lake Erie, the _Griffon_, the first vessel to plow
the waters of the Great Lakes.  As she slides off her skids, August 17,
to go up to Michilimackinac for a cargo of furs, _Te Deum_ is chanted
from the new fort, and Louis Hennepin, the Dutch friar, standing on deck
in full vestments, asks Heaven's blessing on the ship's venture.

Scant is the courtesy of the Michilimackinac traders as the _Griffon's_
guns roar salute to the fort.  Cold is the welcome of the Jesuits as La
Salle enters their chapel dressed in scarlet mantle trimmed with gold.
And to be frank, though La Salle was backed by the King, he had no right
to trade at Michilimackinac, for his monopoly explicitly states he shall
not interfere with the trade of the north, but barter only with the
tribes towards the Illinois.  Never mind! he loads his ships to the water
line with furs to pay his increasing debts, and sends the ship on down to
Niagara with the cargo, while he and Tonty, with different parties,
proceed to the south end of Lake Michigan to cross the Chicago portage
leading to the Mississippi.  Did the jealous traders bribe the pilot to
sink the ship to bottom?  Who knows?  Certain it is when Tonty and La
Salle went down the {138} Illinois early in the new year of 1680, news of
disasters came thick and fast.  The _Griffon_ had sunk with all her
cargo.  The ship from France with the year's supplies for La Salle at
Fort Frontenac had been wrecked at the mouth of the St. Lawrence; and
worse than these losses, which meant financial ruin, here among the
Illinois Indians were Mascoutin Indian spies bribed to stir up trouble
for La Salle.  Small wonder that he named the fort built here Fort
Crèvecoeur,--Fort Broken Heart.

[Illustration: THE BUILDING OF THE _GRIFFON_  (After the engraving in
Father Hennepin's "Nouvelle Découverte," Amsterdam, 1704)]

If La Salle had been fur trader only, as his enemies averred, and not
patriot, one wonders why he did not sit still in his fort at Frontenac
and draw his profits of $20,000 a year, instead of risking loss and
poison and ruin and calumny and death by chasing the phantom of his great
desire to found a New France on the Mississippi.

Never pausing to repine, he orders Hennepin, the friar, to take two
voyageurs and descend Illinois River as far as the Mississippi.  Tonty he
leaves in charge of the Illinois fort.  He {139} himself proceeds
overland the width of half a continent, to Fort Frontenac and Montreal.

Friar Hennepin's adventures have been told in his own book of marvels,
half truth, half lies.  Jolliet, it will be remembered, had explored the
Great River south of the Wisconsin.  Hennepin struck up from the mouth of
the Illinois, to explore north, and he found enough adventure to satisfy
his marvel-loving soul.  The Sioux captured him somewhere near the
Wisconsin.  In the wanderings of his captivity he went as far north as
the Falls of St. Anthony, the site of Minnesota's Twin Cities, and he
finally fell in with a band of Duluth's bushrovers from Kaministiquia
(modern Fort William), Lake Superior.

The rest of the story of La Salle on the Mississippi is more the history
of the United States than of Canada, and must be given in few words.

When La Salle returned from interviewing his creditors on the St.
Lawrence, he found the Illinois Indians dispersed by hostile Iroquois
whom his enemies had hounded on.  Fort Crèvecoeur had been destroyed and
plundered by mutineers among his own men.  Only Tonty and two or three
others had remained faithful, and they had fled for their lives to Lake
Michigan.  Not knowing where Tonty had taken refuge, La Salle pushed on
down the Illinois River, and for the first time beheld the Mississippi,
the goal of all his dreams; but anxiety for his lost men robbed the event
of all jubilation.  Once more united with Tonty at Michilimackinac, La
Salle returned dauntlessly to the Illinois.  Late in the fall of 1681 he
set out with eighteen Indians and twenty Frenchmen from Lake Michigan for
the Illinois.  February of 1682 saw the canoes floating down the
winter-swollen current of the Illinois River for the Mississippi, which
was reached on the 6th.  A week later the river had cleared of ice, and
the voyageurs were camped amid the dense forests at the mouth of the
Missouri.  The weather became warmer.  Trees were donning their bridal
attire of spring and the air was heavy with the odor of blossoms.
Instead of high cliffs, carved fantastic by {140} the waters, came
low-lying swamps, full of reeds, through which the canoes glided and lost
themselves.  Camp after camp of strange Indian tribes they visited, till
finally they came to villages where the Indians were worshipers of the
sun and wore clothing of Spanish make.  By these signs La Salle guessed
he was nearing the Gulf of Mexico.  Fog lay longer on the river of
mornings now.  Ground was lower.  They were nearing the sea.  April 6 the
river seemed to split into three channels.  Different canoes followed
each channel.  The muddy river water became salty.  Then the blue sky
line opened to the fore through the leafy vista of the forest-grown
banks.  Another paddle stroke, and the canoes shot out on the Gulf of
Mexico,--La Salle erect and silent and stern as was his wont.  April 9,
1682, a cross is planted with claim to this domain for France.  To fire
of musketry and chant of Te Deum a new empire is created for King Louis
of France.  Louisiana is its name.

Take a map of North America.  Look at it.  What had the pathfinders of
New France accomplished?  Draw a line from Cape Breton to James Bay, from
James Bay down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico, from the Gulf of
Mexico across to Cape Breton.  Inside the triangle lies the French empire
of the New World,--in area the size of half Europe.  That had the
pathfinders accomplished for France.

La Salle was too ill to proceed at once from the Mississippi to Quebec.
As long as Frontenac remained governor, La Salle could rely on his hungry
creditors and vicious enemies--now eager as wolves, to confiscate his
furs and seize his seigniory at Fort Frontenac--being restrained by the
strong hand of the Viceroy; but while La Salle lay ill at the Illinois
fort, Frontenac was succeeded by La Barre as viceroy; and the new
Governor was a weak, avaricious old man, ready to believe any evil tale
carried to his ears.  He at once sided with La Salle's enemies, and wrote
the French King that the explorer's "_head was turned_"; that La Salle
"_accomplished nothing, but spent his life leading bandits through the
forests, pillaging Indians; {141} that all the story of discovering the
Mississippi was a fabrication_."  When La Salle came from the wilderness
he found himself a ruined man.  Fort Frontenac had been seized by his
enemies.  Supplies for the Mississippi had been stopped, and officers
were on their way to seize the forts there.

Leaving Tonty in charge of his interests, La Salle sailed for France
where he had a strong friend at court in Frontenac.  As it happened,
Spain and France were playing at the game of checkmating each other; and
it pleased the French King to restore La Salle's forts and to give the
Canadian explorer four ships to colonize the Mississippi by way of the
Gulf of Mexico.  This was to oust Spain from her ancient claim on the
gulf; but Beaujeu, the naval commander of the expedition, was not in
sympathy with La Salle.  Beaujeu was a noble by birth; La Salle, only a
noble of the merchant classes.  The two bickered and quarreled from the
first.  By some blunder, when the ships reached the Gulf of Mexico, laden
with colonists, in December of 1684, they missed the mouth of the
Mississippi and anchored off Texas.  The main ship sailed back to France.
Two others were wrecked, and La Salle in desperation, after several trips
seeking the Mississippi, resolved to go overland by way of the
Mississippi valley and the Illinois to obtain aid in Canada for his
colonists.  All the world knows what happened.  Near Trinity River in
Texas some of his men mutinied.  Early in the morning of the 19th of
March, 1687, La Salle left camp with a friar and Indian to ascertain what
was delaying the plotters, who had not returned from the hunt.  Suddenly
La Salle seemed overwhelmed by a great sadness.  He spoke of death.  A
moment later, catching sight of one of the delinquents, he had called
out.  A shot rang from the underbush; another shot; and La Salle reeled
forward dead, with a bullet wound gaping in his forehead.  The body of
the man who had won a new empire for France was stripped and left naked,
a prey to the foxes and carrion birds.  So perished Robert Cavelier de La
Salle, aged forty-four.

Nor need the fate of the mutineers be told here.  The fate of mutineers
is the same the world over.  Having slain their {142} commander, they
fell on one another and perished, either at one another's hands or among
the Indians.  As for the colonists of men, women, and girls left in
Texas, the few who were not massacred by the Indians fell into the hands
of the Spaniards.  La Salle's debts at the time of his death were what
would now be half a million dollars.  His life had ended in what the
world calls ruin, but France entered into his heritage.

With the passing of Robert de La Salle passes the heroic age of
Canada,--its age of youth's dream.  Now was to come its manhood,--its
struggles, its wars, its nation building, working out a greater destiny
than any dream of youth.



FROM 1679 TO 1713

Radisson quarrels with company--Up Labrador coast--Radisson captures
his rivals--Radisson ordered back to England--Death of Radisson--Jan
Peré the spy--The raid on Moose Factory--Sargeant besieged

Before leaving for France, Jean Talon, the Intendant, had set another
exploration in motion.  English trade was now in full sway on Hudson
Bay.  In possession of the Mississippi, the Ohio, the Illinois, the
Great Lakes, France controlled all avenues of approach to the Great
Northwest except Hudson Bay.  This she had lost through injustice to
Radisson; and already the troublesome question had come up,--What was
to be the boundary between the fur-trading domain of the French
northward from the St. Lawrence and the fur-trading domain of the
English southward from Hudson Bay.  Fewer furs came down to Quebec from
Labrador, the King's Domain, from Kaministiquia (Fort William), the
stamping ground of Duluth, the forest ranger.  The furs of these
regions were being drained by the English of Hudson Bay.

Talon determined to put a stop to this, and had advised Frontenac
accordingly.  August, 1671, Governor Frontenac dispatched the English
Jesuit--Father Albanel--with French guides and Indian voyageurs to set
up French arms on Hudson Bay and to bear letters to Radisson and
Groseillers.  The journey was terrific.  I have told the story
elsewhere.  Autumn found the voyageurs beyond the forested shores of
the Saguenay and Lake St. John, ascending a current full of boiling
cascades towards Lake Mistassini.  Then the frost-painted woods became
naked as antlers, with wintry winds setting the dead boughs crashing;
and the ice, thin as mica, forming at the edges of the streams, had
presently thickened too hard for the voyageurs to break with their
paddles.  Albanel and his comrades wintered in the Montaignais' lodges,
which were banked so heavily with snow that scarcely a breath of pure
air could penetrate the {144} stench.  By day the priest wandered from
lodge to lodge, preaching the gospel.  At night he was to be found afar
in the snow-padded solitudes of the forest engaged in prayer.  At last,
in the spring of 1672, thaw set the ice loose and the torrents rushing.
Downstream on June 10 launched Albanel, running many a wild-rushing
rapid, taking the leap with the torrential waters over the lesser
cataracts, and avoiding the larger falls by long detours over rocks
slippery as ice, through swamps to a man's armpits.  The hinterland of
Hudson Bay, with its swamps and rough portages and dank forests of
unbroken windfall, was then and is to-day the hardest canoe trip in
North America; but towards the end of June the French canoes glided out
on the arm of the sea called James Bay, hoisted the French flag, and in
solemn council with the Indians presented gifts to induce them to come
down the Saguenay to Quebec.  Fort Rupert, the Hudson's Bay Company's
post, consisted of two barrack-like log structures.  When Albanel came
to the houses he found not a soul, only boxes of provisions and one
lonely dog.

A few weeks previously the men of the English company had gone on up
the west coast of Hudson Bay, prospecting for the site of a new
settlement.  Before Albanel had come at all, there was friction among
the English.  Radisson and Groseillers were Catholics and French, and
they were supervisors of the entire trade.  Bayly, the English
governor, was subject to them.  So was Captain Gillam, with whom they
had quarreled long ago, when he refused to take his boat into Hudson
Straits on the voyage from Port Royal.  Radisson and Groseillers were
for establishing more posts up the west coast of Hudson Bay, farther
from the competition of Duluth's forest rovers on Lake Superior.  They
had examined the great River Nelson and urged Bayly, the English
governor, to build a fort there.  Bayly sulked and blustered by turns.
In this mood they had come back to Prince Rupert to find the French
flag flying above their fort and the English Jesuit, Albanel, snugly
ensconced, with passports from Governor Frontenac and personal letters
for Radisson and Groseillers.

{145} England and France were at peace.  Bayly had to respect Albanel's
passports, but he wished this English envoy of French rivals far
enough; and when Captain Gillam came from England the old quarrel
flamed out in open hostility.  Radisson and Groseillers were accused of
being in league with the French traders.  A thousand rumors of what
next happened have gained currency.  One writer says that the English
and French came to blows; another, that Radisson and Groseillers
deserted, going back overland with Albanel.  In the Archives of
Hudson's Bay House I found a letter stating that the English captain
kidnapped the Jesuit Albanel and carried him a captive to England.  It
may as well be frankly stated these rumors are all sheer fiction.
Albanel went back overland as he came.  Radisson and Groseillers did
not go with him, though there may have been blows.  Instead, they went
to England on Gillam's ship to present their case to the company.

[Illustration: PRINCE RUPERT  (After the painting by Sir P. Lely)]

The Hudson's Bay Company was uneasy.  Radisson and Groseillers were
aliens.  True, Radisson had married Mary Kirke, the daughter of a
shareholder, and was bound to the English; but if Radisson and
Groseillers had forsworn one land, might they not forswear another, and
go back to the French, as Frontenac's letters no doubt urged?  The
company offered Radisson a salary of 100 pounds a year to stay as clerk
in England.  They did not want him out on the bay again; but {146}
France had offered Radisson a commission in the French navy.  Without
more ado the two Frenchmen left London for Paris, and Paris for America.

The year 1676 finds Radisson back in Quebec engaged in the beaver trade
with all those friends of his youth whose names have become famous,--La
Salle of Fort Frontenac, and Charles Le Moyne the interpreter of
Montreal, and Jolliet of the Mississippi, and La Fôrest who befriended
La Salle, Le Chesnaye who opposed him, and Duluth whose forest rangers
roved from Lake Superior to Hudson Bay.  It can be guessed what these
men talked about over the table of the Sovereign Council at Quebec,
whither they had been called to discuss the price of beaver and the use
of brandy.

The fur traders were at that time in two distinct rings,--the ring of
La Salle and La Fôrest, supported by Frontenac; the Montreal ring,
headed by Le Chesnaye, who fought against the opening of the west
because Lake Ontario trade would divert his trade from the Ottawa.
Radisson's report of that west coast of Hudson Bay, in area large as
all New France, interested both factions of the fur trade intensely.
He was offered two ships for Hudson Bay by the men of both rings.
Because England and France were at peace, Frontenac dared not recognize
the expedition officially; but he winked at it,--as he winked at many
irregularities in the fur trade,--granted the Company of the North
license to trade on Hudson Bay, and gave Radisson's party passports "to
fish off Gaspé."  In the venture Radisson, Groseillers, and the son
Chouart Groseillers, invested their all, possibly amounting to $2500
each.  The rest of the money for the expedition came from the Godfreys,
titled seigneurs of Three Rivers; Dame Sorel, widow of an officer in
the Carignan Regiment; Le Chesnaye, La Salle's lieutenant, and others.

The boats were rickety little tubs unfit for rough northern seas, and
the crews sulky, underfed men, who threatened mutiny at every watering
place and only refrained from cutting Radisson's {147} throat because
he kept them busy.  July 11, 1682, the explorers sheered away from the
fishing fleet of the St. Lawrence and began coasting up the lonely iron
shore of Labrador.  Ice was met sweeping south in mountainous bergs.
Over Isle Demons in the Straits of Belle Isle hung storm wrack and
brown fog as in the days when Marguerite Roberval pined there.  Then
the ships were cutting the tides of Labrador; here through fog; there
skimming a coast that was sheer masonry to the very sky; again,
scudding from storm to refuge of some hole in the wall.

[Illustration: MAP OF HUDSON BAY]

{148} Before September the ships rode triumphantly into
Five-Fathom-Hole off Nelson River, Hudson Bay.  Here two great rivers,
wide as the St. Lawrence, rolled to the sea, separated by a long tongue
of sandy dunes.  The north river was the Nelson; the south, the Hayes.
Approach to both was dangerous, shallow, sandy, and bowlder strewn; but
Radisson's vessels were light draught, and he ran them in on the tide
to Hayes River on the south, where his men took possession for France
and erected log huts as a fort.

Groseillers remained at the fort to command the twenty-seven men.
Young Chouart ranged the swamps and woods for Indians, and Radisson had
paddled down the Hayes from meeting some Assiniboine hunters, when, to
his amazement, there rolled across the wooded swamps the most
astonishing report that could be heard in desolate solitudes.  It was
the rolling reverberation, the dull echo of a far-away cannon firing
signal after signal.

Like a flash Radisson guessed the game.  After all, the Hudson's Bay
Company had taken his advice and were sending ships to trade on the
west coast.  The most of men, supported by only twenty-seven mutineers,
would have scuttled ships and escaped overland, but the explorers of
New France, Champlain and Jolliet and La Salle, were not made of the
stuff that runs from trouble.

Picking out three men, Radisson crossed the marsh northward to
reconnoiter on Nelson River.  Through the brush he espied a white tent
on what is now known as Gillam's Island, a fortress half built, and a
ship at anchor.  All night he and his spies watched, but none of the
builders came near enough to be seized, and next day at noon Radisson
put a bold face on and paddled within cannon shot of the island.

Here was a pretty to-do, indeed!  The Frenchman must have laughed till
he shook with glee!  It was not the Hudson's Bay Company ship at all,
but a poacher, a pirate, an interloper, forbidden by the laws of the
English Company's monopoly; and who was the poacher but Ben Gillam, of
Boston, son of Captain Gillam of the Hudson's Bay Company, with whom,
no doubt, he was in collusion to defraud the English traders!  Calling
for {149} Englishmen to come down to the shore as hostages for fair
treatment, Radisson went boldly aboard the young man's ship, saw
everything, counted the men, noted the fact that Gillam's crew were
mutinous, and half frightened the life out of the young Boston captain
by telling him of the magnificent fort the French had on the south
river, of the frigates and cannon and the powder magazines.  As a
friend he advised young Gillam not to permit his men to approach the
French; otherwise they might be attacked by the Quebec soldiers.  Then
the crafty Radisson paddled off, smiling to himself; but not so fast,
not so easy!  As he drifted down Nelson River, what should he run into
full tilt but the Hudson's Bay Company ship itself, bristling with
cannon, manned by his old enemy, Captain Gillam!

If the two English parties came together, Radisson was lost.  He must
beat them singly before they met; and again putting on a bold face, he
marched out, met his former associates, and as a friend advised them
not to ascend the river farther.  Fortunately for Radisson, both Gillam
and Bridgar, the Hudson's Bay governor, were drinking heavily and glad
to take his advice.  The winter passed, with Radisson perpetrating such
tricks on his rivals as a player might with the dummy men on a
chessboard; but the chessboard, with the English rivals for pawns, was
suddenly upset by the unexpected.  Young Gillam discovered that
Radisson had no fort at all,--only log cabins with a handful of
ragamuffin bushrovers; and Captain Gillam senior got word of young
Gillam's presence.  Radisson had to act, act quickly, and on the nail.

Leaving half a dozen men as hostages in young Gillam's fort, Radisson
invited the youth to visit the French fort for which the young Boston
fellow had expressed such skeptical scorn.  To make a long story short,
young Gillam was no sooner out of his own fort than the French hostages
took peaceable possession of it, and Gillam was no sooner in Radisson's
fort than the French clapped him a prisoner in their guardroom.
Ignorant that the French had captured young Gillam's fort, the Hudson's
Bay Company men had marched upstream at dead of night to his {150}
rescue.  The English knocked for admittance.  The French guards threw
open the gates.  In marched the English traders.  The French clapped
the gates to.  The English were now themselves prisoners.  Such a
double victory would have been impossible to the French if the Hudson's
Bay Company men had not fuddled themselves with drink and allowed their
fine ship, the _Prince Rupert_, to be wrecked in the ice drive.

In spring the ice jam wrecked Radisson's vessels, too, so he was
compelled to send the most of his prisoners in a sloop down Hudson Bay
to Prince Rupert, while he carried the rest with him on young Gillam's
ship down to Quebec with an enormous cargo of furs.

By all the laws of navigation Ben Gillam was nothing more or less than
pirate.  The monopoly of the Hudson's Bay Company forbade him trading
on Hudson Bay.  The license of the Company of the North at Quebec also
excluded him.  In later years, indeed, young Gillam turned pirate
outright, was captured in connection with Captain Kidd at Boston, and
is supposed to have been executed with the famous pirate.  But when
Radisson left Nelson in charge of young Chouart and came down to Quebec
with young Gillam's ship as prize, a change had taken place at Quebec.
Governor Frontenac had been recalled.  In his place was La Barre, whose
favor could be bought by any man who would pay the bribe, and who had
already ruined La Salle by permitting creditors to seize Fort
Frontenac.  England and France were at peace.  Therefore La Barre gave
Gillam's vessel back to him.  The revenue collectors were permitted to
seize all the furs which La Chesnaye had not already shipped to France.
Though La Barre was reprimanded by the King for both acts, not a sou
did Radisson and Groseillers and Chouart ever receive for their
investment; and Radisson was ordered to report at once to the King in

The next part of Radisson's career has always been the great blot upon
his memory, a blot that seemed incomprehensible except on the ground
that his English wife had induced him to {151} return to the Hudson's
Bay Company; but in the memorials left by Radisson himself, in Hudson's
Bay House, London, I found the true explanation of his conduct.

France and England were, as yet, at peace; but it was a pact of
treacherous kind,--secret treaty by which the King of England drew pay
from the King of France.  The King of France dared not offend England
by giving public approval to Radisson's capture of the Hudson's Bay
Company's territory; therefore he ordered Radisson to go back to
Hudson's Bay Company service and restore what he had captured.  But the
King of France had no notion of relinquishing claim to the vast
territory of Hudson Bay; therefore he commanded Radisson to go
unofficially.  Groseillers, the brother, seems to have dropped from all
engagements from this time, and to have returned to Three Rivers.  A
copy of the French minister's instructions is to be found in the
Radisson records of the Hudson's Bay Company to-day.  Not a sou of
compensation was Radisson to receive for the money that he and his
friends had invested in the venture of 1682-1683.  Not a penny of
reparation was he to obtain for the furs at Nelson, which he was to
turn over to the Hudson's Bay Company.

In France, preparation went forward as if for a second voyage to
Nelson; but Radisson secretly left Paris for London, where he was
welcomed by the courtiers of England in May, 1684, and given presents
by King Charles and the Duke of York, who were shareholders in the
Hudson's Bay Company.  May 17 he sailed with the Hudson's Bay Company
vessels for Port Nelson, and there took over from young Chouart the
French forts with 20,000 pounds worth of furs for the English company.

Young Chouart Groseillers and his five comrades were furious.  They had
borne the brunt of attack from both English and Indian enemies during
Radisson's absence, and they were to receive not a penny for the furs
collected.  And their fury knew no bounds when they were forcibly
carried back to England.  The English had invited them on board one of
the vessels for last instructions.  Quickly the anchor was slipped,
sails run {152} out, and the kidnapped Frenchmen carried from the bay.
In a second, young Chouart's hand was on his sword, and he would have
fought on the spot, but Radisson begged him to conceal his anger;
"for," urged Radisson, "some of these English ruffians would like
nothing better than to stab you in a scuffle."

In London, Radisson was lionized, publicly thanked by the company,
presented to the court, and given a present of silver plate.  As for
the young French captives, they were treated royally, voted salaries of
100 pounds a year, and all their expenses of lodgings paid; but when
they spoke of returning to France, unexpected obstructions were
created.  Their money was held back; they were dogged by spies.
Finally they took the oath of allegiance to England, and accepted
engagements to go back as servants of the Hudson's Bay Company to
Nelson at salaries ranging from 100 pounds to 40 pounds, good pay as
money was estimated in those days, equal to at least five times as much
money of the present day.  It was even urged on young Chouart that he
should take an English wife, as Radisson had; but the young Frenchmen
smiled quietly to themselves.  Secret offers of a title had been
conveyed to Chouart by the French ambassador; and to his mother in
Three Rivers he wrote:

I could not go to Paris; I was not at liberty; but I shall be at the
rendezvous or perish trying.  I cannot say more in a letter.  I would
have left this kingdom, but they hold back my pay, and orders have been
given to arrest me if I try to leave.  Assure Mr. Duluth of my humble
services.  I shall see him as soon as I can.  Pray tell my good friend,
Jan Peré.

Peré, it will be remembered, was a bushranger of Duluth's band, who had
been with Jolliet on Lake Superior.

As for Radisson, the English kept faith with him as long as the Stuarts
and his personal friends ruled the English court.  He spent the summers
on Hudson Bay as superintendent of trade, the winters in England
supervising cargoes and sales.  His home was on Seething Lane near the
great Tower, where one of his friends was commander.  Near him dwelt
the merchant princes of London like the Kirkes and the Robinsons and
the Youngs.  His next-door neighbor was the man of fashion, {153}
Samuel Pepys, in whose hands Radisson's Journals of his voyages finally
fell.  His income at this time was 100 pounds in dividends, 100 pounds
in salary, equal to about five times that amount in modern money.

Then came a change in Radisson's fortunes.  The Stuarts were dethroned
and their friends dispersed.  The shareholders of the fur company bore
names of men who knew naught of Radisson's services.  War destroyed the
fur company's dividends.  Radisson's income fell off to 50 pounds a
year.  His family had increased; so had his debts; and he had long
since been compelled to move from fashionable quarters.  A petition
filed in a lawsuit avers that he was in great mental anxiety lest his
children should come to want; but he won his lawsuits against the
company for arrears of salary.  Peace brought about a resumption of
dividends, and the old pathfinder seems to have passed his last years
in comparative comfort.  Some time between March and July, 1710,
Radisson set out on the Last Long Voyage of all men, dying near London.
His burial place is unknown.  As far as Canada is concerned, Radisson
stands foremost as pathfinder of the Great Northwest.

But to return to "good friend, Jan Peré," whom the Frenchmen, forced
into English service, were to meet somewhere on Hudson Bay.  It is like
a story from borderland forays.

Seven large ships set sail from England for Hudson Bay in 1685,
carrying Radisson and young Chouart and the five unwilling Frenchmen.
The company's forts on the bay now numbered four: Nelson, highest up on
the west; Albany, southward on an island at the mouth of Albany River;
Moose, just where James Bay turns westward; and Rupert at the southeast
corner.  But French ships under La Martinière of the Sovereign Council
had also set sail from Quebec in 1685, commissioned by the indignant
fur traders to take Radisson dead or alive; for Quebec did not know the
secret orders of the French court, which had occasioned Radisson's last

July saw the seven Hudson's Bay ships worming their way laboriously
through the ice floes of the straits.  Small sails only {154} were
used.  With grappling hooks thrown out on the ice pans and crews
toiling to their armpits in ice slush, the boats pulled themselves
forward, resting on the lee side of some ice floe during ebb tide, all
hands out to fight the roaring ice pans when the tide began to come in.
At length on the night of July 27, with crews exhausted and the timbers
badly rammed, the ships steered to rest in a harbor off Digge's Island,
sheltered from the ice drive.  The nights of that northern sea are
light almost as day; but clouds had shrouded the sky and a white mist
was rising from the water when there glided like ghosts from gloom two
strange vessels.  Before the exhausted crews of the English ships were
well awake, the waters were churned to foam by a roar of cannonading.
The strange ships had bumped keels with the little _Merchant
Perpetuana_ of the Hudson's Bay.  Radisson, on whose head lay a price,
was first to realize that they were attacked by French raiders; and his
ship was out with sails and off like a bird, followed by the other
English vessels, all except the little _Perpetuana_, now in death
grapple between her foes.  Captain Hume, Mates Smithsend and
Grimmington fought like demons to keep the French from boarding her;
but they were knocked down, fettered and clapped below hatches while
the victors plundered the cargo.  Fourteen men were put to the sword.
August witnessed ship, cargo, and captives brought into Quebec amid
noisy acclaim and roar of cannon.  The French had not captured Radisson
nor ransomed Chouart, but there was booty to the raiders.  New France
had proved her right to trade on Hudson Bay spite of peace between
France and England, or secret commands to Radisson.  Thrown in a
dungeon below Château St. Louis, Quebec, the English captives hear wild
rumors of another raid on the bay, overland in winter; and Smithsend,
by secret messenger, sends warning to England, and for his pains is
sold with his fellow-captives into slavery in Martinique, whence he
escapes to England before the summer of 1686.

But what is Jan Peré of Duluth's bushrovers doing?  All unconscious of
the raid on the ships, the governors of the four {155} English forts
awaited the coming of the annual supplies.  At Albany was a sort of
harbor beacon as well as lookout, built high on scaffolding above a
hill.  One morning, in August of 1685, the sentry on the lookout was
amazed to see three men, white men, in a canoe, steering swiftly down
the rain-swollen river from the Up-Country.  Such a thing was
impossible.  "White men from the interior!  Whence did they come?"
Governor Sargeant came striding to the fort gate, ordering his cannon
manned.  Behold nothing more dangerous than three French forest rangers
dressed in buckskins, but with manners a trifle too smooth for such
rough garb, as one doffs his cap to Governor Sargeant and introduces
himself as Jan Peré, a woodsman out hunting.


England and France were at peace; so Governor Sargeant invited the
three mysterious gentlemen inside to a breakfast of sparkling wines and
good game, hoping no doubt that the wines would unlock the gay fellows'
tongues to tell what game _they_ were playing.  As the wine passed
freely, there were stories of {156} the hunt and the voyage and the
annual ships.  When might the ships be coming?  "Humph," mutters
Sargeant through his beard; and he does n't urge these knights of the
wild woods to tarry longer.  Their canoe glides gayly down coast to the
salt marshes, where the shooting is good; but by chance that night,
_purely by chance_, the French leave their canoe so that the tide will
carry it away.  Then they come back crestfallen to the English fort.

Meanwhile a ship has arrived with the story of the raid on the
_Perpetuana_.  Sargeant is so enraged that he sends two of the French
spies across to Charlton Island, where they can hunt or die; Monsieur
Jan Peré he casts into the cellar of Albany with irons on his wrists
and balls on his feet.  When the ships sail for England, Peré is sent
back as prisoner without having had one word with Chouart Groseillers.
As for the two Frenchmen placed on Charlton Island, did Sargeant think
they were bush-rovers and would stay on an island?  By October they
have laid up store of moose meat, built themselves a canoe, paddled
across to the mainland, and are speeding like wildfire overland to
Michilimackinac with word that Jan Peré is held prisoner at Albany.  As
Jan Peré drops out of history here, it may be said that he was kept
prisoner in England as guarantee for the safety of the English crew
held prisoners at Quebec.  When he escaped to France he was given money
and a minor title for his services.

The news that Peré lay in a dungeon on Hudson Bay supplied the very
excuse that the Quebec fur traders needed for an overland raid in time
of peace.  These were the wild rumors of which the captive English crew
sent warning to England; but the northern straits would not be open to
the company ships before June of 1686, and already a hundred wild
French bushrovers were rallying to ascend the Ottawa to raid the
English on Hudson Bay.

And now a change comes in Canadian annals.  For half a century its
story is a record of lawless raids, bloody foray, dare-devil courage
combined with the most fiendish cruelty and sublime heroism.  Only a
few of these raids can be narrated here.  {157} June 18, 1686, when the
long twilight of the northern night merged with dawn, there came out
from the thicket of underbrush round Moose Factory, Hudson Bay, one
hundred bush-rovers, led by Chevalier de Troyes of Niagara, accompanied
by Le Chesnaye of the fur trade, Quebec, and the Jesuit, Sylvie.  Of
the raiders, sixty-six were Indians under Pierre Le Moyne d'Iberville
and his brothers, Maricourt and Ste. Hélène, aged about twenty-four,
sons of Charles Le Moyne, the Montreal interpreter.  Moose Factory at
this time boasted fourteen cannon, log-slab palisades, commodious
warehouses, and four stone bastions,--one with three thousand pounds of
powder, another used as barracks for twelve soldiers, another housing
beaver pelts, and a fourth serving as kitchen.  Iberville and his
brothers, scouting round on different sides of the fort, soon learned
that not a sentinel was on duty.  The great gate opposite the river,
studded with brass nails, was securely bolted, but not a cannon {158}
had been loaded.  The bushrangers then cast aside all clothing that
would hamper, and, pistol in hand, advanced silent and stealthy as
wild-cats.  Not a twig crunched beneath the moccasin tread.  The water
lay like glass, and the fort slept silent as death.  Hastily each
raider had knelt for the blessing of the priest.  Pistols had been
recharged.  Iberville bade his wild Indians not to forget that the
Sovereign Council of Quebec offered ten crowns reward for every enemy
slain, twenty for every enemy captured.  In fact, there could be no
turning back.  Two thousand miles of juniper swamps and forests lay
between the bush-rovers and home.  They must conquer or perish.  De
Troyes led his white soldiers round to make a pretense of attack from
the water front.  Iberville posted his sixty-six Indians along the
walls with muskets rammed through the loopholes.  Then, with an
unearthly yell, the Le Moyne brothers were over the tops of the
pickets, swords in hand, before the English soldiers had awakened.  The
English gunner reeled from his cannon at the main gate with head split
to the collar bone.  The gates were thrown wide, trees rammed the doors
open, and Iberville had dashed halfway up the stairs of the main house
before the inmates, rushing out in their nightshirts, realized what had
happened.  Two men only were killed, one on each side.  The French were
masters of Moose Fort in less than five minutes, with sixteen captives
and rich supply of ammunition.

[Illustration: LE MOYNE D'IBERVILLE]

Eastward of Moose was Rupert Fort, where the company's ship anchored.
Hither the raiders plied their canoes by sea.  Look at the map!  Across
the bottom of James Bay projects a long tongue of swamp land.  To save
time, Iberville portaged across this, and by July 1 was opposite Prince
Rupert's bastions.  At the dock lay the English ship.  That day
Iberville's men kept in hiding, but at night he had ambushed his men
along shore and paddled across to the ship.  Just as Iberville stepped
on the deck a man on guard sprang at his throat.  One blow of
Iberville's sword killed the Englishman on the spot.  Stamping to call
the crew aloft, Iberville sabered the men as they scrambled up the
hatches, till the Governor himself threw {159} up hands in
unconditional surrender.  The din had alarmed the fort, and hot shot
snapping fire from the loopholes kept the raiders off till the Le Moyne
brothers succeeded in scrambling to the roofs of the bastions, hacking
holes through the rough thatch and firing inside.  This drove the
English gunners from their cannon.  A moment later, and the raiders
were on the walls.  It was a repetition of the fight at Moose Factory.
The English, taken by surprise, surrendered at once; and the French now
had thirty prisoners, a good ship, two forts, but no provisions.

Northwestward three hundred miles lay Albany Fort.  Iberville led off
in canoes with his bushrovers.  De Troyes followed on the English boat
with French soldiers and English prisoners.  To save time, as the bay
seemed shallow, Iberville struck out from the shore across seas.  All
at once a north wind began whipping the waters, sweeping down a
maelstrom of churning ice.  Worse still, fog fell thick as wool.  Any
one who knows canoe travel knows the danger.  Iberville avoided
swamping by ordering his men to camp for the night on the shifting ice
pans, canoes held above heads where the ice crush was wildest, the
voyageurs clinging hand to hand, making a life line if one chanced to
slither through the ice slush.  When daylight came with worse fog,
Iberville kept his pistol firing to guide his followers, and so pushed
on.  Four days the dangerous traverse lasted, but August 1 the
bushrovers were in camp below the cliffs of Albany.

Indians had forewarned Governor Sargeant.  The loopholes of his
palisades bristled with muskets and heavy guns that set the bullets
flying soon as De Troyes arrived and tried to land the cannon captured
from the other forts for assault on Albany.  Drums beating, flags
flying, soldiers in line, a French messenger goes halfway forward and
demands of an English messenger come halfway out the surrender of Sieur
Jan Peré, languishing in the dungeons of Albany.  The English Governor
sends curt word back that Peré has been sent home to France long ago,
and demands what in thunder the French mean by these raids in time of
peace.  The French retire that night to consider.  {160} Cannon they
have, but they have used up nearly all their ammunition.  They have
thirty prisoners, but they have no provisions.  The prisoners have told
them there are 50,000 pounds worth of furs stored at Albany.

Inside the fort the English were in almost as bad way.  The larder was
lean, powder was scarce, and the men were wildly mutinous, threatening
to desert _en masse_ for the French on the excuse they had not hired to
fight, and "_if any of us lost a leg, the company could not make it

At the end of two days' desultory firing, the company Governor captured
down at Rupert came to Sargeant and told him frankly that the
bloodthirsty bushrovers were desperate; they had either to conquer or
starve, and if they were compelled to fight, there would be no quarter.
Men and women alike would be butchered in hand-to-hand fight.  Still
Sargeant hung on, hoping for the annual frigate of the company.  Then
powder failed utterly.  Still Sargeant would not show the white flag;
so an underfactor flourished a white sheet from an upper window.
Chevalier De Troyes came forward and seated himself on one of the
cannon.  Governor Sargeant went out and seated himself on the same
cannon with two bottles of wine.  The English of Albany were allowed to
withdraw to Charlton Island to await the company ship.  As for the
other prisoners, those who were not compelled to carry the plundered
furs back to Quebec, were turned adrift in the woods to find their way
overland north to Nelson.  Iberville's bushrovers were back in Montreal
by October.



FROM 1686 TO 1698

War with the Iroquois--The year of the massacre--Frontenac returns--The
heroine of Verchères--Indian raid and counter-raid--Massacre and
Schenectady--The massacre at Fort Loyal--Boston roused to
action--Quebec besieged--Phips and Frontenac--Retreat of the
English--Iberville's gallant sea fight--Nelson surrenders

For ten years Hudson Bay becomes the theater of northern buccaneers and
bushraiders.  A treaty of neutrality in 1686 provides that the bay
shall be held in common by the fur traders of England and France; but
the adventurers of England and the bushrovers of Quebec have no notion
of leaving things so uncertain.  Spite of truce, both fit out raiders,
and the King of France, according to the shifting diplomacy of the day,
issues secret orders "to permit not a vestige of English possession on
the northern bay."

Maricourt Le Moyne held the newly captured forts on the south shore of
James Bay till Iberville came back overland in 1687.  The fort at
Rupert had been completely abandoned after the French victory of the
previous summer, and the Hudson's Bay Company sloop, the _Young_, had
just sailed into the port to reëstablish the fur post.  Iberville
surrounded the sloop by his bushrovers, captured it with all hands, and
dispatched four spies across to Charlton Island, where another sloop,
the _Churchill_, swung at anchor.  Here Iberville's run of luck turned.
Three of his four spies were captured, fettered, and thrown into the
hold of the vessel for the winter.  In the spring of 1688 one was
brought above decks to help the English sailors.  Watching his chance,
the grizzled bushrover waited till six of the English crew were up the
ratlines.  Quick as flash the Frenchman tiptoed across decks in his
noiseless moccasins, took one precautionary glance over his shoulder,
brained two Englishmen with an ax, liberated his comrades, and at
pistol point kept the other Englishmen up the masts till he and his
fellows had righted the ship and steered the vessel across to Rupert
River, where the provisions were just in time to save Iberville's party
from starvation.

{162} This episode is typical of what went on at the Hudson's Bay forts
for ten years.  Each year, when the English ships came out to Nelson on
the west coast, armed bands were sent south to wrest the forts on James
Bay from the French; and each spring, when Iberville's bushrovers came
gliding down the rivers in their canoes from Canada, there was a fight
to drive out the English.  Then the Indians would scatter to their
hunting grounds.  No more loot of furs for a year!  The English would
sail away in their ships, the French glide away in their canoes; and
for a winter the uneasy quiet of calm between two thunderclaps would
rest over the waters of Hudson Bay.

In the spring of 1688, about the time that the brave bush-rovers had
brought the English ship from Charlton Island across to Rupert River,
two English frigates under Captain Moon, with twenty-four soldiers over
and above the crews, had come south from Nelson to attack the French
fur traders at Albany.  As ill luck would have it, the ice floes began
driving inshore.  The English ships found themselves locked in the ice
before the besieged fort.  Across the jam from Rupert River dashed
Iberville with his Indian bandits, portaging where the ice floes
covered the water, paddling where lanes of clear way parted the
floating drift.  Iberville hid his men in the tamarack swamps till
eighty-two Englishmen had landed and all unsuspecting left their ships
unguarded.  Iberville only waited till the furs in the fort had been
transferred to the holds of the vessels.  The ice cleared.  The
Frenchman rushed his bushrovers on board, seized the vessel with the
most valuable cargo, and sailed gayly out of Albany for Quebec.  The
astounded English set fire to the other ship and retreated overland.

But the dare-devil bushrovers were not yet clear of trouble.  As the
ice drive jammed and held them in Hudson Straits, they were aghast to
see, sailing full tilt with the roaring tide of the straits, a fleet of
English frigates, the Hudson's Bay Company's annual ships; but
Iberville sniffed at danger as a war horse glories in gunpowder.  He
laughed his merriest, and as the ice drive locked all the ships within
gunshot, ran up an {163} English flag above his French crew and had
actually signaled the captains of the English frigates to come aboard
and visit him, when the ice cleared.  Hoisting sail, he showed swift
heels to the foe.  Iberville's ambition now was to sweep _all_ the
English from Hudson Bay, in other words, to capture Nelson on the west
coast, whence came the finest furs; but other raids called him to

It will be recalled that La Salle's enemies had secretly encouraged the
Iroquois to attack the tribes of the Illinois; and now the fur traders
of New York were encouraging the Iroquois to pillage the Indians of the
Mississippi valley, in order to divert peltries from the French on the
St. Lawrence to the English at New York.  Savages of the north, rallied
by Perrot and Duluth and La Motte Cadillac, came down by the lakes to
Fort Frontenac to aid the French; but they found that La Barre, the new
governor, foolish old man, had been frightened into making peace with
the Iroquois warriors, abandoning the Illinois to Iroquois raid and
utterly forgetful that _a peace which is not a victory is not worth the
paper it is written on_.

For the shame of this disgraceful peace La Barre was recalled to France
and the Marquis de Denonville, a brave soldier, sent out as governor.
Unfortunately Denonville did not understand conditions in the colony.
The Jesuit missionaries were commissioned to summon the Iroquois to a
conference at Fort Frontenac, but when the deputies arrived they were
seized, tortured, and fifty of them shipped to France by the King's
order to serve as slaves on the royal galleys.  It was an act of
treachery heinous beyond measure and exposed the Jesuit missionaries
among the Five Nations to terrible vengeance; but the Iroquois code of
honor was higher than the white man's.  "Go home," they warned the
Jesuit missionary.  "We have now every right to treat thee as our foe;
but we shall not do so!  Thy heart has had no share in the wrong done
to us.  We shall not punish thee for the crimes of another, tho' thou
didst act as the unconscious tool.  But leave us!  When our young {164}
men chant the song of war they may take counsel only of their fury and
harm thee!  Go to thine own people"; and furnishing him with guides,
they sent him to Quebec.

Though Denonville marched with his soldiers through the Iroquois
cantons, he did little harm and less good; for the wily warriors had
simply withdrawn their families into the woods, and the Iroquois were
only biding their time for fearful vengeance.

This lust of vengeance was now terribly whetted.  Dongan, the English
governor of New York, had been ordered by King James of England to
observe the treaty of neutrality between England and France; but this
did not hinder him supplying the Iroquois with arms to raid the French
and secretly advising them "not to bury the war hatchet,--just to hide
it in the grass, and stand on their guard to begin the war anew."


Nor did the treaty of neutrality prevent the French from raiding Hudson
Bay and ordering shot in cold blood any French bushrover who dared to
guide the English traders to the country of the Upper Lakes.

In addition to English influence egging on the Iroquois, the treachery
of the Huron chief, The Rat, lashed the vengeance {165} of the Five
Nations to a fury.  He had come down to Fort Frontenac to aid the
French.  He was told that the French had again arranged peace with the
Iroquois, and deputies were even now on their way from the Five Nations.

"Peace!"  The old Huron chief was dumbfounded.  What were these fool
French doing, trusting to an Iroquois peace?  "Ah," he grunted, "that
may be well"; and he withdrew without revealing a sign of his
intentions.  Then he lay in ambush on the trail of the deputies, fell
on the Iroquois peace messengers with fury, slaughtered half the band,
then sent the others back with word that he had done this by order of
Denonville, the French governor.

"There," grunted The Rat grimly, "I 've killed the peace for them!  We
'll see how Onontio gets out of this mess."

Meanwhile war had been declared between England and France.  The
Stuarts had been dethroned.  France was supporting the exiled monarch,
and William of Orange had become king of England.  Iberville and Duluth
and La Motte Cadillac, the famous fighters of Canada's wildwood, were
laying plans before the French Governor for the invasion and conquest
of New York; and New York was preparing to defend itself by pouring
ammunition and firearms free of cost into the hands of the Iroquois.
Then the Iroquois vengeance fell.

Between the night and morning of August 4 and 5, in 1689, a terrific
thunderstorm had broken over Montreal.  Amidst the crack of hail and
crash of falling trees, with the thunder reverberating from the
mountain like cannonading, whilst the frightened people stood gazing at
the play of lightning across their windows, fourteen hundred Iroquois
warriors landed behind Montreal, beached their canoes, and stole upon
the settlement.  What next followed beggars description.  Nothing else
like it occurs in the history of Canada.  For years this summer was to
be known as "the Year of the Massacre."

Before the storm subsided, the Iroquois had stationed themselves in
circles round every house outside the walls of Montreal.  At the signal
of a whistle, the warriors fell on the settlement {166} like beasts of
prey.  Neither doors nor windows were fastened in that age, and the
people, deep in sleep after the vigil of the storm, were dragged from
their beds before they were well awake.  Men, women, and children fell
victims to such ingenuity of cruelty as only savage vengeance could
conceive.  Children were dashed to pieces before their parents' eyes;
aged parents tomahawked before struggling sons and daughters; fathers
held powerless that they might witness the tortures wreaked on wives
and daughters.  Homes which had heard some alarm and were on guard were
set on fire, and those who perished in the flames {167} died a merciful
death compared to those who fell in the hands of the victors.  By
daybreak two hundred people had been wantonly butchered.  A hundred and
fifty more had been taken captives.  As if their vengeance could not be
glutted, the Iroquois crossed the river opposite Montreal, and, in full
sight of the fort, weakly garrisoned and paralyzed with fright, spent
the rest of the week, day and night, torturing the white captives.  By
night victims could be seen tied to the torture stake amid the
wreathing flames, with the tormentors dancing round the camp fire in
maniacal ferocity.  Denonville was simply powerless.  He lost his head,
and seemed so panic-stricken that he forbade even volunteer bands from
rallying to the rescue.  For two months the Iroquois overran Canada
unchecked.  Indeed, it was years before the boldness engendered by this
foray became reduced to respect for French authority.  Settlement after
settlement, the marauders raided.  From Montreal to Three Rivers crops
went up in flame, and the terrified habitants came cowering with their
families to the shelter of the palisades.

[Illustration: WILLIAM OF ORANGE]

In the midst of this universal terror came the country's savior.
Frontenac had been recalled because he quarreled with the intendant and
he quarreled with the Jesuits and he quarreled with the fur traders;
but his bitterest enemies did not deny that he could put the fear of
the Lord and respect for the French into the Iroquois' heart.
Arbitrary he was as a czar, but just always!  To be sure he mended his
fortunes by personal fur trade, but in doing so he cheated no man; and
he worked no injustice, and he wrought in all things for the lasting
good of the country.  Homage he demanded as to a king, once going so
far as to drive the Sovereign Councilors from his presence with the
flat of a sword; but he firmly believed and he had publicly proved that
he was worthy of homage, and that the men who are forever shouting
"liberty--liberty and the people's rights," are frequently wolves in
sheep's clothing, eating out the vitals of a nation's prosperity.

Here, then, was the haughty, hot-headed, aggressive Frontenac, sent
back in his old age to restore the prestige of New France, {168} where
both La Barre the grafter, and Denonville the courteous Christian
gentleman, had failed.

To this period of Iroquois raids belongs one of the most heroic
episodes in Canadian life.  The only settlers who had not fled to the
protection of the palisaded forts were the grand old seigniors, the new
nobility of New France, whose mansions were like forts in themselves,
palisaded, with stone bastions and water supply and yards for stock and
mills inside the walls.  Here the seigniors, wildwood knights of a
wilderness age, held little courts that were imitations of the
Governor's pomp at Quebec.  Sometimes during war the seignior's wife
and daughters were reduced to plowing in the fields and laboring with
the women servants at the harvest; but ordinarily the life at the
seigniory was a life of petty grandeur, with such style as the
backwoods afforded.  In the hall or great room of the manor house was
usually an enormous table used both as court of justice by the seignior
and festive board.  On one side was a huge fireplace with its homemade
benches, on the other a clumsily carved chiffonier loaded with solid
silver.  In the early days the seignior's bedstead might be in the same
room,--an enormous affair with panoplies of curtains and counterpanes
of fur rugs and feather mattresses, so high that it almost necessitated
a ladder.  But in the matter of dress the rude life made up in style
what it lacked in the equipments of a grand mansion.

The bishop's description of the women's dresses I have already given,
though at this period the women had added to the "sins" of bows and
furbelows and frills, which the bishop deplored, the yet more heinous
error of such enormous hoops that it required fine maneuvering on the
part of a grand dame to negotiate the door of the family coach; and
however pompous the seignior's air, it must have suffered temporary
eclipse in that coach from the hoops of his spouse and his spouse's
daughters.  As for the seignior, when he was not dressed in buckskin,
leading bushrovers on raids, he appeared magnificent in all the
grandeur that a 20 pounds wig and Spanish laces and French ruffles
{169} and imported satins could lend his portly person; and if the
figure were not portly, one may venture to guess, from the pictures of
stout gentlemen in the quilted brocades of the period, that padding
made up what nature lacked.

Such a seigniory was Verchères, some twenty miles from Montreal, on the
south side of the St. Lawrence.  M. de Verchères was an officer in one
of the regiments, and chanced to be absent from home during October of
1696, doing duty at Quebec.  Madame de Verchères was visiting in
Montreal.  Strange as it may seem, the fort and the family had been
left in charge of the daughter, Madeline, at this time only fourteen
years of age.  At eight o'clock on the morning of October 22 she had
gone four hundred paces outside the fort gates when she heard the
report of musket firing.  The rest of the story may be told in her own

I at once saw that the Iroquois were firing at our settlers, who lived
near the fort.  One of our servants call out: "Fly, Mademoiselle, fly!
The Iroquois are upon us!"

Instantly I saw some forty-five Iroquois running towards me, already
within pistol shot.  Determined to die rather than fall in their hands,
I ran for the fort, praying to the Blessed Virgin, "Holy Mother, save
me!  Let me perish rather than fall in their hands!"  Meanwhile my
pursuers paused to fire their guns.  Bullets whistled past my ears.
Once within hearing of the fort, I shouted, "To arms!  To arms!"

There were but two soldiers in the fort, and they were so overcome by
fear that they ran to hide in the bastion.  At the gates I found two
women wailing for the loss of their husbands.  Then I saw several
stakes had fallen from the palisades where enemies could gain entrance;
so I seized the fallen planks and urged the women to give a hand
putting them back in their places.  Then I ran to the bastion, where I
found two of the soldiers lighting a fuse.

"What are you going to do?" I demanded.

"Blow up the fort," answered one cowardly wretch.

"Begone, you rascals," I commanded, putting on a soldier's helmet and
seizing a musket.  Then to my little brothers: "Let us fight to the
death!  Remember what father has always said,--that gentlemen are born
to shed their blood in the service of God and their King."

My brothers and the two soldiers kept up a steady fire from the
loopholes.  I ordered the cannon fired to call in our soldiers, who
were hunting; {170} but the grief-stricken women inside kept wailing so
loud that I had to warn them their shrieks would betray our weakness to
the enemy.  While I was speaking I caught sight of a canoe on the
river.  It was Sieur Pierre Fontaine, with his family, coming to visit
us.  I asked the soldiers to go out and protect their landing, but they
refused.  Then ordering Laviolette, our servant, to stand sentry at the
gate, I went out myself, wearing a soldier's helmet and carrying a
musket.  I left orders if I were killed the gates were to be kept shut
and the fort defended.  I hoped the Iroquois would think this a ruse on
my part to draw them within gunshot of our walls.  That was just what
happened, and I got Pierre Fontaine and his family safely inside by
putting a bold face on.  Our whole garrison consisted of my two little
brothers aged about twelve, one servant, two soldiers, one old habitant
aged eighty, and a few women servants.  Strengthened by the Fontaines,
we began firing.  When the sun went down the night set in with a
fearful storm of northeast wind and snow.  I expected the Iroquois
under cover of the storm.  Gathering our people together, I said: "God
has saved us during the day.  Now we must be careful for the night.  To
show you I am not afraid to take my part, I undertake to defend the
fort with the old man and a soldier, who has never fired a gun.  You,
Pierre Fontaine and La Bonte and Galet (the two soldiers), go to the
bastion with the women and children.  If I am taken, never surrender
though I am burnt and cut to pieces before your eyes!  You have nothing
to fear if you will make some show of fight!"

I posted two of my young brothers on one of the bastions, the old man
of eighty on the third, and myself took the fourth.  Despite the
whistling of the wind we kept the cry "All's well," "All's well"
echoing and reëchoing from corner to corner.  One would have imagined
the fort was crowded with soldiers, and the Iroquois afterwards
confessed they had been completely deceived; that the vigilance of the
guard kept them from attempting to scale the walls.  About midnight the
sentinel at the gate bastion called out, "Mademoiselle!  I hear

I saw it was our cattle.

"Let me open the gates," urged the sentry.

"God forbid," said I; "the savages are likely behind, driving the
animals in."

Nevertheless I _did_ open the gates and let the cattle in, my brothers
standing on each side, ready to shoot if an Indian appeared.

At last came daylight; and we were hopeful for aid from Montreal; but
Marguerite Fontaine, being timorous as all Parisian women are, begged
her husband to try and escape.  The poor husband was almost distracted
as she insisted, and he told her he would set her out in the canoe with
her two sons, who could paddle it, but he would not abandon
Mademoiselle in Verchères.  I had been twenty-four hours without rest
or food, and had not {171} once gone from the bastion.  On the eighth
day of the siege Lieutenant de La Monnerie reached the fort during the
night with forty men.

One of our sentries had called out, "Who goes?"

I was dozing with my head on a table and a musket across my arm.  The
sentry said there were voices on the water.  I called, "Who are you?"

They answered, "French--come to your aid!"

I went down to the bank, saying: "Sir, but you are welcome!  I
surrender my arms to you!"

"Mademoiselle," he answered, "they are in good hands."

I forgot one incident.  On the day of the attack I remembered about one
in the afternoon that our linen was outside the fort, but the soldiers
refused to go out for it.  Armed with our guns, my brothers made two
trips outside the walls for our linen.  The Iroquois must have thought
it a trick to lure them closer, for they did not approach.

It need scarcely be added that brave mothers make brave sons, and it is
not surprising that twenty-five years later, when Madeline Verchères
had become the wife of M. de La Naudière, her own life was saved from
Abenaki Indians by her little son, age twelve.

But to return to Count Frontenac, marching up the steep streets of
Quebec to Château St. Louis that October evening of 1689, amid the
jubilant shouts of friends and enemies, Jesuit and Recollet, fur trader
and councilor,--the haughty Governor set himself to the task of not
only crushing the Iroquois but invading and conquering the land of the
English, whom he believed had furnished arms to the Iroquois.  Now that
war had been openly declared between England and France, Frontenac was
determined on a campaign of aggression.  He would keep the English so
busy defending their own borders that they would have no time to tamper
with the Indian allies of the French on the Mississippi.

This is one of the darkest pages of Canada's past.  War is not a pretty
thing at any time, but war that lets loose the bloodhounds of Indian
ferocity leaves the blackest scar of all.

There were to be three war parties: one from Quebec to attack the
English settlements around what is now Portland, {172} Maine; a second
from Three Rivers to lay waste the border lands of New Hampshire; a
third from Montreal to assault the English and Dutch of the Upper

The Montrealers set out in midwinter of 1690, a few months after
Frontenac's arrival, led by the Le Moyne brothers, Ste. Hélène and
Maricourt and Iberville, with one of the Le Bers, and D'Ailleboust,
nephew of the first D'Ailleboust at Montreal.  The raiders consisted of
some two hundred and fifty men, one hundred Indian converts and one
hundred and fifty bushrovers, hardy, supple, inured to the wilderness
as to native air, whites and Indians dressed alike in blanket coat,
hood hanging down the back, buckskin trousers, beaded moccasins,
snowshoes of short length for forest travel, cased musket on shoulder,
knife, hatchet, pistols, bullet pouch hanging from the sashed belt, and
provisions in a blanket, knapsack fashion, carried on the shoulders.

[Illustration: QUEBEC, 1689]

The woods lay snow padded, silent, somber.  Up the river bed of the
Richelieu, over the rolling drifts, glided the bushrovers.  {173}
Somewhere on the headwaters of the Hudson the Indians demanded what
place they were to attack.  Iberville answered, "Albany."  "Humph,"
grunted the Indians with a dry smile at the camp fire, "since _when_
have the French become so brave?"  A midwinter thaw now turned the
snowy levels to swimming lagoons, where snowshoes were useless, and the
men had to wade knee-deep day after day through swamps of ice water.
Then came one of those sudden changes,--hard frost with a blinding
snowstorm.  Where the trail forked for Albany and Schenectady it was
decided to follow the latter, and about four o'clock in the afternoon,
on the 8th of February, the bush-rovers reached a hut where there
chanced to be several Mohawk squaws.  Crowding round the chimney place
to dry their clothes now stiff with ice, the bushrangers learned from
the Indian women that Schenectady lay completely unguarded.  There had
been some village festival that day among the Dutch settlers.  The
gates at both ends of the town lay wide open, and as if in derision of
danger from the far distant French, a snow man had been mockingly
rolled up to the western gate as sentry, with a sham pipe stuck in his
mouth.  The Indian rangers harangued their braves, urging them to wash
out all wrongs in the blood of the enemy, and the Le Moyne brothers
moved from man to man, giving orders for utter silence.  At eleven that
night, shrouded by the snowfall, the bushrovers reached the palisades
of Schenectady.  They had intended to defer the assault till dawn, but
the cold hastened action, and, uncasing their muskets, they filed
silently past the snow man in the middle of the open gate and encircled
the little village of fifty houses.  When the lines met at the far
gate, completely investing the town, a wild yell rent the air!  Doors
were hacked down.  Indians with tomahawks stood guard outside the
windows, and the dastardly work began,--as gratuitous a butchery of
innocent people as ever the Iroquois perpetrated in their worst raids.
Two hours the massacre lasted, and when it was over the French had, to
their everlasting discredit, murdered in cold blood thirty-eight men
(among them the poor inoffensive dominie), ten women, {174} twelve
children; and the victors held ninety captives.  To the credit of
Iberville he offered life to one Glenn and his family, who had aided in
ransoming many French from the Iroquois, and he permitted this man to
name so many friends that the bloodthirsty Indians wanted to know if
all Schenectady were related to this white man.  One other house in the
town was spared,--that of a widow with five children, under whose roof
a wounded Frenchman lay.  For the rest, Schenectady was reduced to
ashes, the victors harnessing the Dutch farmers' horses to carry off
the plunder.  Of the captives, twenty-seven men and boys were carried
back to Quebec.  The other captives, mainly women and children, were
given to the Indians.  Forty livres for every human scalp were paid by
the Sovereign Council of Quebec to the raiders.


The record of the raiders led from Three Rivers by François Hertel was
almost the same.  Setting out in January, he was followed by
twenty-five French and twenty-five Indians to the border lands between
Maine and New Hampshire.  The end of March saw the bushrovers outside
the little village of Salmon Falls.  Thirty inhabitants were tomahawked
on the spot, the houses burned, and one hundred prisoners carried off;
but news had gone like wildfire to neighboring settlements, and Hertel
was pursued by two hundred Englishmen.  He placed his bushrovers on a
small bridge across Wooster River and here held the pursuers at bay
till darkness enabled him to escape.

But the darkest deed of infamy was perpetrated by the third band of
raiders,--a deed that reveals the glories of war as they {175} exist,
stripped of pageantry.  Portneuf had led the raiders from Quebec, and
he was joined by that famous leader of the Abenaki Indians, Baron de
Saint-Castin, from the border lands between Acadia and Maine.  Later,
when Hertel struck through the woods with some of his followers,
Portneuf's men numbered five hundred.  With these he attacked Fort
Loyal, or what is now Portland, Maine, in the month of June.  The fort
boasted eight great guns and one hundred soldiers.  Under cover of the
guns Lieutenant Clark and thirty men sallied out to reconnoiter the
attacking forces ambushed in woods round a pasturage.  At a musket
crack the English were literally cut to pieces, four men only escaping
back to the fort.  The French then demanded unconditional surrender.
The English asked six days to consider.  In six days English vessels
would have come to the rescue.  Secure, under a bluff of the ocean
cliff, from the cannon fire of the fort, the French began to trench an
approach to the palisades.  Combustibles had been placed against the
walls, when the English again asked a parley, offering to surrender if
the French would swear by the living God to conduct them in safety to
the nearest English post.  To these conditions the French agreed.
Whether they could not control their Indian allies or had not intended
to keep the terms matters little.  The English had no sooner marched
from the fort than, with a wild whoop, the Indians fell on men, women,
and children.  Some were killed by a single blow, others reserved for
the torture stake.  Only four Englishmen survived the onslaught, to be
carried prisoners to Quebec.

The French had been victorious on all three raids; but they were
victories over which posterity will never boast, which no writer dare
describe in all the detail of their horrors, and which leave a black
blot on the escutcheon of Canada.

It was hardly to be expected that the New England colonies would let
such raids pass unpunished.  The destruction of Schenectady had been
bad enough.  The massacre of Salmon Falls caused the New Englanders to
forget their jealousies for the once and to unite in a common cause.
All the colonies agreed {176} to contribute men, ships, and money to
invade New France by land and sea.  The land forces were placed under
Winthrop and Schuyler; but as smallpox disorganized the expedition
before it reached Lake Champlain, the attack by land had little other
effect than to draw Frontenac from Quebec down to Montreal, where
Captain Schuyler, with Dutch bushmen, succeeded in ravaging the
settlements and killing at least twenty French.

The expedition by sea was placed under Sir William Phips of
Massachusetts,--a man who was the very antipodes of Frontenac.  One of
a poor family of twenty-six children, Phips had risen from being a
shepherd boy in Maine to the position of ship's carpenter in Boston.
Here, among the harbor folk, he got wind of a Spanish treasure ship
containing a million and a half dollars' worth of gold, which had been
sunk off the West Indies.  Going to England, Phips succeeded in
interesting that same clique of courtiers who helped Radisson to
establish the Hudson's Bay Company,--Albemarle and Prince Rupert and
the King; and when, with the funds which they advanced, Phips succeeded
in raising the treasure vessel, he received, in addition to his share
of the booty, a title and the appointment as governor of Massachusetts.

[Illustration: SIR WILLIAM PHIPS]

Here, then, was the daring leader chosen to invade New France.  Phips
sailed first for Port Royal, which had in late years become infested
with French pirates, preying on Boston commerce.  Word had just come of
the fearful massacres of {177} colonists at Portland.  Boston was
inflamed with a spirit of vengeance.  The people had appointed days of
fasting and prayer to invoke Heaven's blessing on their war.  When
Phips sailed into Annapolis Basin with his vessels and seven hundred
men in the month of May, he found the French commander, Meneval, ill of
the gout, with a garrison of about eighty soldiers, but all the cannon
chanced to be dismounted.  The odds against the French did not permit
resistance.  Meneval stipulated for an honorable surrender,--all
property to be respected and the garrison to be sent to some French
port; but no sooner were the English in possession than, like the
French at Portland, they broke the pledge.  There was no massacre as in
Maine, but plunderers ran riot, seizing everything on which hands could
be laid, ransacking houses and desecrating the churches; and sixty of
the leading people, including Meneval and the priests, were carried off
as prisoners.  Leaving one English flag flying, Phips sailed home.

Indignation at Boston had been fanned to fury, for now all the details
of the butchery at Portland were known; and Phips found the colony
mustering a monster expedition to attack the very stronghold of French
power,--Quebec itself.  England could afford no aid to her colonies,
but thirty-two merchant vessels and frigates had been impressed into
the service, some of them carrying as many as forty-four cannon.
Artisans, sailors, soldiers, clerks, all classes had volunteered as
fighters, to the number of twenty-five hundred men; but there was one
thing lacking,--they had no pilot who knew the St. Lawrence.  Full of
confidence born of inexperience, the fleet set sail on the 9th of
August, commanded again by Phips.

Time was wasted ravaging the coasts of Gaspé, holding long-winded
councils of war, arguing in the commander's stateroom instead of
drilling on deck.  Three more weeks were wasted poking about the lower
St. Lawrence, picking up chance vessels off Tadoussac and Anticosti.
Among the prize vessels taken near Anticosti was one of Jolliet's,
bearing his wife and mother-in-law.  The ladies delighted the hearts of
the Puritans by the {178} news that not more than one hundred men
garrisoned Quebec; but Phips was reckoning without his host, and his
host was Frontenac.  Besides, it was late in the season--the middle of
October--before the English fleet rounded the Island of Orleans and
faced the Citadel of Quebec.

[Illustration: COUNT FRONTENAC  (From a statue at Quebec)]

Indians had carried word to the city that an Englishwoman, taken
prisoner in their raids, had told them more than thirty vessels had
sailed from Boston to invade New France.  Frontenac was absent in
Montreal.  Quickly the commander at Quebec sent coureurs with warning
to Frontenac, and then set about casting up barricades in the narrow
streets that led from Lower to Upper Town.

Frontenac could not credit the news.  Had he not heard here in Montreal
from Indian coureurs how the English overland expedition lay rotting of
smallpox near Lake Champlain, such pitiable objects that the Iroquois
refused to join them against the French?  New France now numbered a
population of twelve thousand and could muster three thousand fighting
men; and though the English colonies numbered twenty {179} thousand
people, how could they, divided by jealousies, send an invading army of
twenty-seven hundred, as the rumor stated?  Frontenac, grizzled old
warrior, did not credit the news, but, all the same, he set out amid
pelting rains by boat for Quebec.  Half-way to Three Rivers more
messengers brought him word that the English fleet were now advancing
from Tadoussac.  He sent back orders for the commander at Montreal to
rush the bush-rovers down to Quebec, and he himself arrived at the
Citadel just as the Le Moyne brothers anchored below Cape Diamond from
a voyage to Hudson Bay.  Maricourt Le Moyne reported how he had escaped
past the English fleet by night, and it would certainly be at Quebec by

Scouts rallied the bushrangers on both sides of the St. Lawrence to
Quebec's aid.  Frontenac bade them guard the outposts and not desert
their hamlets, while Ste. Hélène and the other Le Moynes took command
of the sharpshooters in Lower Town, scattering them in hiding along the
banks of the St. Charles and among the houses facing the St. Lawrence
below Castle St. Louis.

Sure enough, at daybreak on Monday, October 16, sail after sail,
thirty-four in all, rounded the end of Orleans Island and took up
position directly opposite Quebec City.  It was a cold, wet autumn
morning.  Fog and rain alternately chased in gray shadows across the
far hills, and above the mist of the river loomed ominous the red-gray
fort which the English had come to capture.  Castle St. Louis stood
where Château Frontenac stands to-day; and what is now the promenade of
a magnificent terrace was at that time a breastwork of cannon extending
on down the sloping hill to the left as far as the ramparts.  In fact,
the cannon of that period were more dangerous than they are to-day, for
long-range missiles have rendered old-time fortifications adapted for
close-range fighting almost useless; and the cannon of Upper Town,
Quebec, that October morning swept the approach to three sides of the
fort, facing the St. Charles, opposite Point Lévis and the St.
Lawrence, where it curves back on itself; and the fourth side was sheer

{180} With a rattling of anchor chains and a creaking of masts the
great sails of the English fleet were lowered, and a little boat put
out at ten o'clock under flag of truce to meet a boat half-way from
Lower Town.  Phips' messenger was conducted blindfold up the barricaded
streets leading to Castle St. Louis; and the gunners had been
instructed to clang their muskets on the stones to give the impression
of great numbers.  Suddenly the bandage was taken from the man's eyes
and he found himself in a great hall, standing before the august
presence of Frontenac, surrounded by a circle of magnificently dressed
officers.  The New Englander delivered his message,--Phips' letter
demanding surrender: "_Your prisoners, your persons, your estates . . .
and should you refuse, I am resolved by the help of God, in whom I
trust, to revenge by force of arms all our wrongs_." . . .  As the
reading of the letter was finished the man looked up to see an insolent
smile pass round the faces of Frontenac's officers, one of whom
superciliously advised hanging the bearer of such insolence without
waste of time.  The New Englander pulled out his watch and signaled
that he must have Frontenac's answer within an hour.  The haughty old
Governor pretended not to see the motion, and then, with a smile like
ice, made answer in {181} words that have become renowned: "I shall not
keep you waiting so long!  Tell your General I do not recognize King
William!  I know no king of England but King James!  Does your General
suppose that these brave gentlemen"--pointing to his officers--"would
consent to trust a man who broke his word at Port Royal?"

[Illustration: CASTLE ST. LOUIS]

As the shout of applause died away, the trembling New Englander asked
Frontenac if he would put his answer in writing.

"No," thundered the old Governor, never happier than when fighting, "I
will answer your General with my cannon!  I shall teach him that a man
of my rank"--with covert sneer at Phips' origin, "is not to be summoned
in such rude fashion!  Let him do his best!  I shall do mine!"

It was now the turn of the English to be amazed.  This was not the
answer they had expected from a fort weakly garrisoned by a hundred
men.  If they had struck and struck quickly, they might yet have won
the day; but all Monday passed in futile arguments and councils of war,
and on Tuesday, the 17th, towards night, was heard wild shouting within
Quebec walls.

[Illustration: ATTACK ON QUEBEC, 1690]

"My faith, Messieurs!" exclaimed one of the French prisoners aboard
Phips' ship; "now you _have_ lost your chance!  Those {182} are the
coureurs de bois from Montreal and the bushrovers of the Pays d'en
Haut, eight hundred strong."

The news at last spurred Phips to action.  All that night the people of
Quebec could hear the English drilling, and shouting "_God save King
William_!" with beat of drum and trumpet calls that set the echoes
rolling from Cape Diamond; and on the 18th small boats landed fourteen
hundred men to cross the St. Charles River and assault the Lower Town,
while the four largest ships took up a position to cannonade the city.
It was four in the afternoon before the soldiers had been landed amid
peppering bullets from the Le Moyne bushrovers.  Only a few cannon
shots were fired, and they did no damage but to kill an urchin of the
Upper Town.

Firing began in earnest on the morning of October 19.  The river was
churned to fury and the reverberating echoes set the rocks crashing
from Cape Diamond, but it was almost impossible for the English to
shoot high enough to damage the upper fort.  It was easy for the French
to shoot down, and great wounds gaped from the hull of Phips' ship,
while his masts went over decks in flame, flag and all.  The tide
drifted the admiral's flag on shore.  The French rowed out, secured the
prize, and a jubilant shout roared from Lower Town, to be taken up and
echoed and reëchoed from the Castle!  For two more days bombs roared in
midair, plunging through the roofs of houses in Lower Town or
ricochetting back harmless from the rock wall below Castle St. Louis.
At the St. Charles the land forces were fighting blindly to effect a
crossing, but the Le Moyne bushrovers lying in ambush repelled every
advance, though Ste. Hélène had fallen mortally wounded.  On the
morning of the 21st the French could hardly believe their senses.  The
land forces had vanished during the darkness of a rainy night, and ship
after ship, sail after sail, was drifting downstream--was it
possible?--in retreat.  Another week's bombarding would have reduced
Quebec to flame and starvation; but another week would have exposed
Phips' fleet to wreckage from winter weather, and he had drifted down
to Isle Orleans, where the {183} dismantled fleet paused to rig up
fresh masts.  It was Madame Jolliet who suggested to the Puritan
commander an exchange of the prisoners captured at Port Royal with the
English from Maine and New Hampshire held in Quebec.  She was sent
ashore by Phips and the exchange was arranged.  Winter gales assailed
the English fleet as it passed Anticosti, and what with the wrecked and
wounded, Phips' loss totaled not less than a thousand men.

[Illustration: CASTLE ST. LOUIS, QUEBEC]

Frontenac had been back in Canada only a year, and in that time he had
restored the prestige of French power in America.  The Iroquois were
glad to sue for peace, and his bitterest enemies, the Jesuits, joined
the merrymakers round the bonfires of acclaim kindled in the old
Governor's honor as the English retreated, and the joy bells pealed
out, and processions surged shouting through the streets of Quebec!
From Hudson Bay to the Mississippi, from the St. Lawrence to Lake
Superior and the land of the Sioux, French power reigned supreme.  Only
Port Nelson, high up on the west coast of Hudson Bay, remained
unsubdued, draining the furs of the prairie tribes to England away from
Quebec.  Iberville had captured it in the fall of 1694, at the cost of
his brother Châteauguay's life; but when Iberville departed from Hudson
Bay, English men-of-war had come out in 1696 and wrested back this most
valuable of all the fur posts.  It was now determined to drive the
English forever from Hudson Bay.  Le Moyne d'Iberville was chosen for
the task.

April, 1697, Sérigny Le Moyne was dispatched from France with five
men-of-war to be placed under the command of Iberville at Placentia,
Newfoundland, whence he was "to proceed {184} to Hudson Bay and to
leave not a vestige of the English in the North."  The frigates left
Newfoundland July 8.  Three weeks later they were crushing through the
ice jam of Hudson Straits.  Iberville commanded the _Pelican_ with two
hundred and fifty men.  Bienville, a brother, was on the same ship.
Sérigny commanded the _Palmier_, and there were three other frigates,
the _Profound_, the _Violent_, the _Wasp_.  Ice locked round the fleet
at the west end of Hudson Straits, and fog lay so thick there was
nothing visible of any ship but the masthead.  For eighteen days they
lay, crunched and rammed and separated by the ice drive, till on August
25, early in the morning, the fog suddenly lifted.  Iberville saw that
Sérigny's ship had been carried back {185} in the straits.  The _Wasp_
and _Violent_ were not to be seen, but straight ahead, locked in the
ice, stood the _Profound_, and beside the French vessel three English
frigates, the _Hampshire_, the _Deering_, the _Hudson's Bay_, on their
annual voyage to Nelson!  A lane of water opened before Iberville.
Like a bird the _Pelican_ spread her wings to the wind and fled.

[Illustration: PLAN OF QUEBEC (after Franquelin, 1683)]

September 3 Iberville sighted Port Nelson, and for two days cruised the
offing, scanning the sea for the rest of his fleet.  Early on September
5 the sails of three vessels heaved and rose above the watery horizon.
Never doubting these were his own ships, Iberville signaled.  There was
no answer.  A sailor scrambled to the masthead and shouted down
terrified warning.  These were not the French ships!  They were the
English frigates bearing straight down on the single French vessel
commanded by Iberville!

On one side was the enemy's fort, on the other the enemy's fleet coming
over the waves before a clipping wind, all sails set.  Of Iberville's
crew forty men were ill of scurvy.  Twenty-five had gone ashore to
reconnoiter.  He had left one hundred and fifty fighting men.  Amid a
rush of orders, ropes were stretched across decks for handhold, cannon
were unplugged, and the batterymen below decks stripped themselves for
the hot work ahead.  The soldiers assembled on decks, sword in hand,
and the Canadian bushrovers stood to the fore, ready to leap across the
enemy's decks.

By nine in the morning the ships were abreast, and roaring cannonades
from the English cut the decks of the _Pelican_ to kindling wood and
set the masts in flame.  At the same instant one fell blast of musketry
mowed down forty French; but Iberville's batterymen below decks had now
ceased to pour a stream of fire into the English hulls.  The odds were
three to one, and for four hours the battle raged, the English shifting
and sheering to lock in death grapple, Iberville's sharpshooters
peppering the decks of the foe.

It had turned bitterly cold.  The blood on the decks became ice, and
each roll of the sea sent wounded and dead weltering {186} from rail to
rail.  Such holes had been torn in the hulls of both English and French
ships that the gunners below decks were literally looking into each
other's smoke-grimmed faces.  Suddenly all hands paused.  A frantic
scream cleft the air.  The vessels were careening in a tempestuous sea,
for the great ship _Hampshire_ had refused to answer to the wheel, had
lurched, had sunk,--sunk swift as lead amid hiss of flames into the
roaring sea!  Not a soul of her two hundred and fifty men escaped.  The
frigate _Hudson's Bay_ surrendered and the _Deering_ fled.  Iberville
was victor.


But a storm now broke in hurricane gusts over the sea.  Iberville
steered for land, but waves drenched the wheel at every wash, and,
driving before the storm, the _Pelican_ floundered in the sands a few
miles from Nelson.  All lifeboats had been shot away.  In such a sea
the Canadian canoes were useless.  The shattered masts were tied in
four-sided racks.  To these {187} Iberville had the wounded bound, and
the crew plunged for the shore.  Eighteen men perished going ashore in
the darkness.  On land were two feet of snow.  No sooner did the French
castaways build fires to warm their benumbed limbs than bullets
whistled into camp.  Governor Bayly of Port Nelson had sent out his
sharpshooters.  Luckily Iberville's other ships now joined him, and,
mustering his forces, the dauntless French leader marched against the
fort.  Storm had permitted the French to land their cannon undetected.
Trenches were cast up, and three times Sérigny Le Moyne was sent to
demand surrender.


"The French are desperate," he urged.  "They must take the fort or
perish of want, and if you continue the fight there will be no mercy

The Hudson's Bay people capitulated and were permitted to march out
with arms, bag and baggage.  An English ship carried the refugees home
to the Thames.

The rest of Iberville's career is the story of colonizing the
Mississippi.  He was granted a vast seigniory on the Bay of {188}
Chaleur, and in 1699 given a title.  On his way from the Louisiana
colony to France his ship had paused at Havana.  Here Iberville
contracted yellow fever and died while yet in the prime of his manhood,
July 9, 1706.

After the victory on Hudson Bay the French were supreme in America and
Frontenac supreme in New France.  The old white-haired veteran of a
hundred wars became the idol of Quebec.  Friends and enemies, Jesuits
and Recollets, paid tribute to his worth.  In November of 1698 the
Governor passed from this life in Castle St. Louis at the good old age
of seventy-eight.  He had demonstrated--demonstrated in action so that
his enemies acknowledged the fact--that the sterner virtues of the
military chieftain go farther towards the making of great nationhood
than soft sentiments and religious emotionalism.



FROM 1698 TO 1713

Petty regulations and blue laws--Massacre of Deerfield--Madame
Freneuse, the painter lady--"Old Wooden Sword"--Subercase at Port
Royal--Paul Mascarene's plight--Court dandies cause naval disaster

While Frontenac was striking terror into the heart of New England with
his French Canadian bushrovers, the life of the people went on in the
same grooves.  Spite of a dozen raids on the Iroquois cantons, there
was still danger from the warriors of the Mohawk, but the Iroquois
braves had found a new stamping ground.  Instead of attacking Canada
they now crossed westward to war on the allies of the French, the
tribes of the Illinois and the Mississippi; and with them traveled
their liege friends, English traders from New York and Pennsylvania and

The government of Canada continued to be a despotism, pure and simple.
The Supreme Council, consisting of the governor, the intendant, the
bishop, and at different times from three to twelve councilors, stood
between the people and the King of France, transmitting the King's will
to the people, the people's wants to the King; and the laws enacted by
the council ranged all the way from criminal decrees to such petty
regulations as a modern city wardman might pass.  Laws enacted to meet
local needs, but subject to the veto of an absent ruler, who knew
absolutely nothing of local needs, exhibited all the absurdities to be
expected.  The King of France desires the Sovereign Council to
discourage the people from using horses, which are supposed to cause
laziness, as "it is needful the inhabitants keep up their snowshoe
travel so necessary in their wars."  "If in two years the numbers of
horses do not decrease, they are to be killed for meat."  Then comes a
law that reflects the presence of the bishop at the governing board.
Horses have become the pride of the country beaux, and the gay
be-ribboned carrioles are the distraction of the village curé.  "Men
are forbidden to gallop their horses within a third of a mile from the
church on {190} Sundays."  New laws, regulations, arrests, are
promulgated by the public crier, "crying up and down the highway to
sound of trumpet and drum," chest puffed out with self-importance, gold
braid enough on the red-coated regalia to overawe the simple habitants.
Though the companies holding monopoly over trade yearly change,
monopoly is still all-powerful in New France,--so all pervasive that in
1741, in order to prevent smuggling to defraud the Company of the
Indies, it is enacted that "people using chintz-covered furniture" must
upholster their chairs so that the stamp "La Cie des Indes" will be
visible to the inspector.  The matter of money is a great trouble to
New France.  Beaver is coin of the realm on the St. Lawrence, and
though this beaver is paid for in French gold, the precious metal
almost at once finds its way back to France for goods; so that the
colony is without coin.  Government cards are issued as coin, but as
Europe will not accept card money, the result is that gold still flows
from New France, and the colony is flooded with paper money worthless
away from Quebec.

As of old, the people may still plead their own cases in lawsuits
before the Sovereign Council, but now the privileges of caste and class
and feudalism begin to be felt, and it is enacted that gentlemen may
plead their own cases before the council only "when wearing their
swords."  Young men are urged to qualify as notaries.  In addition to
the title of "Sieur," baronies are created in Canada, foremost among
them that of the Le Moynes of Montreal.  The feudal seignior now has
his coat of arms emblazoned on the church pew where he worships, on his
coach door, and on the stone entrance to his mansion.  The habitants
are compelled to grind their wheat at his mill, to use his great bake
oven, to patronize his tannery.  The seigniorial mansion itself is
taking on more of pomp.  Cherry and mahogany furniture have replaced
homemade, and the rough-cast walls are now covered with imported

Not gently does the Sovereign Council deal with delinquents.  In 1735
it is enacted of a man who suicided, "that the corpse be tied to a
cart, dragged on a hurdle, head down, face to ground, {191} through the
streets of the town, to be hung up by the feet, an object of derision,
then cast into the river in default of a cesspool."  Criminals who
evade punishment by flight are to be hanged in effigy.  Montreal
citizens are ordered to have their chimneys cleaned every month and
their houses provided with ladders.  Also "the inhabitants of Montreal
must not allow their pigs to run in the street," and they "are
forbidden to throw snowballs at each other," and--a regulation which
people who know Montreal winters will appreciate--"they are ordered to
make paths through the snow before their houses,"--to all of which
petty regulations did royalty subscribe sign manual.

[Illustration: CONTEMPORARY MAP (after La Hontan, 1689) (The line shows
the French idea of the territory under English control)]

The Treaty of Ryswick closed the war between France and England the
year before Frontenac died, but it was not known in Canada till 1698.
As far as Canada was concerned it was no peace, barely a truce.  Each
side was to remain in possession of what it held at the time of the
treaty, which meant that France retained all Hudson Bay but one small
fort.  Though the English of Boston had captured Port Royal, they had
left {192} no sign of possession but their flag flying over the
tenantless barracks.  The French returned from the woods, tore the flag
down, and again took possession; so that, by the Treaty of Ryswick,
Acadia too went back under French rule.

Indeed, matters were worse than before the treaty, for there could be
no open war; but when English settlers spreading up from Maine met
French traders wandering down from Acadia, there was the inevitable
collision, and it was an easy trick for the rivals to stir up the
Indians to raid and massacre and indiscriminate butchery.  For Indian
raids neither country would be responsible to the other.  The story
belongs to the history of the New England frontier rather than to the
record of Canada.  It is a part of Canada's past which few French
writers tell and all Canadians would fain blot out, but which the
government records prove beyond dispute.  Indian warfare is not a thing
of grandeur at its best, but when it degenerates into the braining of
children, the bayoneting of women, the mutilation of old men, it is a
horror without parallel; and the amazing thing is that the white men,
who painted themselves as Indians and helped to wage this war, were so
sure they were doing God's work that they used to kneel and pray before
beginning the butchery.  To understand it one has to go back to the
Middle Ages in imagination.  New France was violently Catholic, New
England violently Protestant.  Bigotry ever looks out through eyes of
jaundiced hatred, and in destroying what they thought was a false
faith, each side thought itself instrument of God.  As for the French
governors behind the scenes, who pulled the strings that let loose the
helldogs of Indian war, they were but obeying the kingcraft of a royal
master, who would use Indian warfare to add to his domain.

"The English have sent us presents to drive the Black Gowns away,"
declared the Iroquois in 1702 regarding the French Jesuits.  "You did
well," writes the King of France to his Viceroy in Quebec, "to urge the
Abenakis of Acadia to raid the English of Boston."  The Treaty of
Ryswick became {193} known at Quebec towards the end of 1698.  The
border warfare of ravage and butchery had begun by 1701, the English
giving presents to the Iroquois to attack the French of the Illinois,
the French giving presents to the Abenakis to raid the New England
borders.  Quebec offers a reward of twenty crowns for the scalp of
every white man brought from the English settlements.  New England
retaliates by offering 20 pounds for every Indian prisoner under ten
years of age, 40 pounds for every scalp of full-grown Indian.
Presently the young _noblesse_ of New France are off to the woods,
painted like Indians, leading crews of wild bushrovers on ambuscade and
midnight raid and border foray.

[Illustration: HERTEL DE ROUVILLE]

"We must keep things stirring towards Boston," declared Vaudreuil, the
French governor.  Midwinter of 1704 Hertel de Rouville and his four
brothers set out on snowshoes with fifty-one bushrovers and two hundred
Indians for Massachusetts.  Dressed in buckskin, with musket over
shoulder and dagger in belt, the forest rangers course up the frozen
river beds southward of the St. Lawrence, and on over the height of
land towards the Hudson, two hundred and fifty miles through pine woods
snow padded and silent as death.  Two miles from Deerfield the marchers
run short of food.  It is the last day of February, and the sun goes
down over rolling snowdrifts high as the slab stockades of the little
frontier town whose hearth-fire smoke hangs low in the frosty air,
curling and clouding and lighting to rainbow colors as the ambushed
{194} raiders watch from their forest lairs.  Snowshoes are laid aside,
packs unstrapped, muskets uncased and primed, belts reefed tighter.
Twilight gives place to starlight.  Candles on the supper tables of the
settlement send long gleams across the snow.  Then the villagers hold
their family prayers, all unconscious that out there in the woods are
the bushrovers on bended knees, uttering prayers of another sort.
Lights are put out.  The village lies wrapped in sleep.  Still
Rouville's raiders lie waiting, shivering in the snow, till starlight
fades to the gray darkness that precedes dawn.  Then the bushrovers
rise, and at moccasin pace, noiseless as tigers, skim across the snow,
over the drifts, over the tops of the palisades, and have dropped into
the town before a soul has awakened.  There is no need to tell the
rest.  It was not war.  It was butchery.  Children were torn from their
mother's breast to be brained on the hearthstone.  Women were hacked to
pieces.  Houses were set on fire, and before the sun had risen
thirty-eight persons had been slaughtered, and the French rovers were
back on the forest trail, homeward bound with one hundred and six
prisoners.  Old and young, women of frail health and children barely
able to toddle, were hurried along the trail at bayonet point.  Those
whose strength was unequal to the pace were summarily knocked on the
head as they fagged, or failed to ford the ice streams.  Twenty-four
perished by the way.  Of the one hundred and six prisoners scattered as
captives among the Indians, not half were ever heard of again.  The
others were either bought from the Indians by Quebec people, whose pity
was touched, or placed round in the convents to be converted to the
Catholic faith.  These were ultimately redeemed by the government of

New England's fury over such a raid in time of peace knew no bounds.
Yet how were the English to retaliate?  To pursue an ambushed Indian
along a forest trail was to follow a vanishing phantom.

From earliest times Boston had kept up trade with Port Royal, and of
late years Port Royal had been infested with French pirates, who raided
Boston shipping.  Colonel Ben {195} Church of Long Island, a noted
bushfighter, of gunpowder temper and form so stout that his men had
always to hoist him over logs in their forest marches, went storming
from New York to Boston with a plan to be revenged by raiding Acadia.

Rouville's bushrovers had burned Deerfield the first of March.  By May,
Church had sailed from Boston with six hundred men on two frigates and
half a hundred whaleboats, on vengeance bent.  First he stopped at
Baron St. Castin's fort in Maine.  St. Castin it was who led the
Indians against the English of Maine.  The baron was absent, but his
daughter was captured, with all the servants, and the fort was burned
to the ground.  Then up Fundy Bay sailed Church, pausing at
Passamaquoddy to knock four Frenchmen on the head; pausing at Port
Royal to take eight men prisoners, kill cattle, ravage fields; pausing
at Basin of Mines to capture forty habitants, burn the church, and cut
the dikes, letting the sea in on the crops; pausing at Beaubassin, the
head of Fundy Bay, in August, to set the yellow wheat fields in flames!
Then he sailed back to Boston with French prisoners enough to insure an
exchange for the English held at Quebec.

No sooner had English sails disappeared over the sea than the French
came out of the woods.  St. Castin rebuilt his fort in Maine.  The
local Governor, who had held on with his gates shut and cannon pointed
while Church ravaged Port Royal village, now strengthened his walls.
Acadia took a breath and went on as before,--a little world in itself,
with the pirate ships slipping in and out, loaded to the water line
with Boston booty; with the buccaneer Basset throwing his gold round
like dust; with the brave soldier Bonaventure losing his head and
losing his heart to the painted lady, Widow Freneuse, who came from
nobody knew where and lived nobody knew how, and plied her mischief of
winning the hearts of other women's husbands.  "She must be sent away,"
thundered the priest from the pulpit, straight at the garrison officer
whose heart she dangled as her trophy.  "She must be sent away,"
thundered the King's mandate; but the King was in France, and Madame
Freneuse {196} wound her charms the tighter round the hearts of the
garrison officers, and bided her time, to the scandal of the parish and
impotent rage of the priest.  Was she vixen or fool, this fair snake
woman with the beautiful face, for whose smile the officers risked
death and disgrace?  Was she spy or adventuress?  She signed herself as
"Widow Freneuse," and had applied to the King for a pension as having
grown sons fighting in the Indian wars.  She will come into this story
again, snakelike and soft-spoken, and appealing for pity, and fair to
look upon, but leaving a trail of blood and treachery and disgrace
where she goes.

The fur trade of Port Royal at this time was controlled by a family
ring of La Tours and Charnisays, descendants of the ancient foes; and
they lived a life of reckless gayety, spiced with all the excitement of
war and privateering and matrimonial intrigue.  Such was life _inside_
Port Royal.  _Outside_ was the quiet peace of a home-loving,
home-staying peasantry.  Few of the farmers could read or write.  The
houses were little square Norman cottages,--"wooden boxes" the
commandant called them,--with the inevitable porch shaded by the fruit
trees now grown into splendid orchards.  By diking out the sea the
peasants farmed the marsh lands and saved themselves the trouble of
clearing the forests.  Trade was carried on with Boston and the West
Indies.  No card money here!  The farmers of Acadia demanded coin in
gold from the privateers who called for cargo, and it is said that in
time of such raids as Colonel Church's, great quantities of this gold
were carried out by night and buried in huge pots,--as much as 5000
louis d'ors (pounds) in one pot,--to be dug up after the raiders had
departed.  Naturally, as raids grew frequent, men sometimes made the
mistake of digging up other men's pots, and one officer lost his
reputation over it.  All his knowledge of the outside world, of
politics, of religion, the Acadian farmer obtained from his parish
priest; and the word of the curé was law.

Encouraged by Church's success and stung by the raids of French
corsairs from Port Royal, New England set herself seriously to the task
of conquering Acadia.  Colonel March sailed {197} from Boston with one
thousand men and twenty-three transports, and on June 6, 1707, came
into Port Royal.  Misfortunes began from the first.  March's men were
the rawest of recruits,--fishermen, farmers, carpenters, turned into
soldiers.  Unused to military discipline, they resisted command.  A
French guardhouse stood at the entrance to Port Royal Basin, and
fifteen men at once fled to the fort with warning of the English
invasion.  Consequently, when Colonel March and Colonel Appleton
attempted to land their men, they were serenaded by the shots of an
ambushed foe.  Also French soldiers deserted to the English camp with
fabulous stories about the strength of the French under Subercase.
These yarns ought to have discredited themselves, but they struck
terror to the hearts of March's green fighters.  Then came St. Castin
from St. John River with bushrovers to help Subercase.  To the
amazement of the French the English hoisted sail and returned, on June
16, without having fired more than a round of shot.  The truth is,
March's carpenters and fishermen refused to fight, though
reënforcements joined them halfway home and they made a second attempt
on Port Royal in August.  March returned to Boston heartbroken, for his
name had become a byword to the mob, and he was greeted in the streets
with shouts of "Old Wooden Sword!"

While Boston was attempting to wreak vengeance on Acadia for the
raiders of Quebec, the bushrovers from the St. Lawrence continued to
scourge the outlying settlements of New England.  To post soldiers on
the frontier was useless.  Wherever there were guards the raiders
simply passed on to some unprotected village, and to have kept soldiers
along the line of the whole frontier would have required a standing
army.  Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, northern New
York,--on the frontier of each reigned perpetual terror.  And the
fiendish work was a paying business to the pagan Indian; for the
Christian white men paid well for all scalps, and ransom money could
always be extorted for captives.  Barely had the Boston raid on Port
Royal failed, when Governor de Vaudreuil of Quebec {198} retaliated by
turning his raiders loose on Haverhill.  The English fleet failed at
Port Royal in June.  By dawn of Sunday, August 29, Hertel de Rouville
had swooped on the English village of Haverhill with one hundred
Canadian bushrovers and one hundred and fifty Indians.  The story of
one raid is the story of all; so this one need not be told.  As the
raiders were discovered at daylight, the people had a chance to defend
themselves, and some of the villagers escaped, the family of one being
hidden by a negro nurse under tubs in the cellar.  Alarm had been
carried to the surrounding settlements, and men rode hot haste in
pursuit of the forty prisoners.  Hertel de Rouville coolly sent back
word, if the pursuers did not desist, all the prisoners would be
scalped and left on the roadside.  Some fifty English had fallen in the
fight, but the French lost fifteen, among them young Jared of
Verchéres, brother of the heroine.


The only peace for Massachusetts was the peace that would be a victory,
and again New England girded herself to the task of capturing Acadia.
It was open war now, for the crowns of England and France were at odds.
The troops were commanded by General Francis Nicholson, an English
officer who brought out four war ships and four hundred trained
marines.  There were, besides, thirty-six transports and three thousand
provincial troops, clothed and outfitted by Queen Anne of England.
Sunday, September 24, 1710, the fleet glides majestically into Port
Royal Basin.  That night the wind blew a hurricane and the transport
_Caesar_ went aground with a crash that smashed her timbers to kindling
wood and sent twenty-four men to a watery grave; but General Nicholson
gave the raw provincials no time for panic fright.  Day dawn, Monday,
drums rolling a martial tread, trumpets blowing, bugles setting the
echoes flying, flags blowing to the wind in the morning sun, he
commanded Colonel Vetch to lead the men ashore.  Inside Port Royal's
palisades Subercase, the French commander, had less than three hundred
men, half that number absolutely naked of clothing, and all short of
powder.  There were not provisions to last a month; but, game to his
soul's marrow, as all the warriors of {199} those early days, Subercase
put up a brave fight, sending his bombs singing over the heads of the
English troops in a vain attempt to baffle the landing.  Nicholson
retaliated by moving his bomb ship, light of draught, close to the
French fort and pouring a shower of bombs through the roofs of the
French fort.  Spite of the wreck the night before, by four o'clock
Monday afternoon all the English had landed in perfect order and high
spirits.  Slowly the English forces swung in a circle completely round
the fort.  Again and again, by daylight and dark, Subercase's naked
soldiers rushed, screeching the war whoop, to ambush and stampede the
English line; but Nicholson's regulars stood the fire like rocks, and
the desperate sortie of the French ended in fifty of Subercase's
soldiers deserting en masse to the English.  By Friday Nicholson's guns
were all mounted in place to bombard the little wooden fort.  Subercase
was desperate.  Women and children from the settlement had crowded into
the fort for protection, and were now crazed with fear by the bursting
bombs, while the naked soldiers could be kept on the walls only at the
sword point of their commanding officers.  {200} For two hundred French
to have held out longer against three thousand five hundred English
would have been madness.  Subercase made the presence of the women in
Port Royal an excuse to send a messenger with flag of truce across to
Nicholson, asking the English to take the women under their protection.
Nicholson might well have asked what protection the French raiders had
accorded the women of the New England frontiers; but he sent back
polite answer that "as he was not warring on women and children" he
would receive them in the English camp, meanwhile holding Subercase's
messenger prisoner, as he had entered the English camp without warning,
eyes unbound.  Sunday, October 1, the English bombs again began singing
overhead.  Subercase sends word he will capitulate if given honorable
terms.  For a month the parleying continues.  Then November 13 the
terms are signed on both sides, the English promising to furnish ships
to carry the garrison to some French port and pledging protection to
the people of the settlement.  November 14 the French officers and
their ladies come across to the English camp and breakfast in pomp with
the English commanders.  Seventeen New England captives are hailed
forth from Port Royal dungeons, "all in rags, without shirts, shoes, or
stockings."  On the 16th Nicholson draws his men up in two lines, one
on each side of Port Royal gates, and the two hundred French soldiers
marched out, saluting Nicholson as they passed to the transports.  On
the bridge, halfway out, French officers meet the English officers,
doff helmets, and present the keys to the fort.  For the last time Port
Royal changes hands.  Henceforth it is English, and in gratitude for
the Queen's help Nicholson renamed the place as it is known
to-day,--Annapolis.  Among the raiders capitulating is the famous
bushrover Baron St. Castin of Maine.

When Nicholson returned to Boston all New England went mad with
delight.  Thanksgiving services were held, joy bells rang day and night
for a week, and bonfires blazed on village commons to the gleeful
shoutings of rustic soldiers returned to the home settlements glorified


[Illustration: PAUL MASCARENE]

At Annapolis (Port Royal) Paul Mascarene, a French Huguenot of Boston,
has mounted guard with two hundred and fifty New England volunteers.
Colonel Vetch is nominally the English governor; but Vetch is in Boston
the most of the time, and it is on Mascarene the burden of governing
falls.  His duties are not light.  Palisades have been broken down and
must be repaired.  Bombs have torn holes in the fort roofs, and all
that winter the rain leaks in as through a sieve.  The soldier
volunteers grumble and mope and sicken.  And these are not the least of
Paul Mascarene's troubles.  French priests minister to the Acadian
farmers outside the fort, to the sinister Indians ever lying in ambush,
to the French bushrovers under young St. Castin across Fundy Bay on St.
John River.  Not for love or money can Mascarene buy provisions from
the Acadians.  Not by threats can he compel them to help mend the
breaches in the palisades.  The young commandant was only twenty-seven
years of age, but he must have guessed whence came the unspoken
hostility.  The first miserable winter wears slowly past and the winter
of 1711 is setting in, with the English garrison even more poverty
stricken than the year before, when there drifts into Annapolis Basin,
in a birch canoe paddled by a New Brunswick Indian, a white woman with
her little son.  She has come, she says, from the north side of Fundy
Bay, because the French {202} on St. John River are starving.  Whether
the story be true or false matters little.  It was the Widow Freneuse,
the snake woman of mischief-making witchery, who had woven her spells
round the officers in the days of the French at Port Royal.  True or
false, her story, added to her smile, excited sympathy, and she was
welcomed to the shelter of the fort.  It had been almost impossible for
the English to obtain trees to repair the walls of the fort, and
seventy English soldiers were sent out secretly by night to paddle up
the river in a whaleboat for timber.  Who conveyed secret warning of
this expedition to the French bushraiders outside?  No doubt the fair
spy, Widow Freneuse, could have told if she would; but five miles from
Port Royal, where the river narrowed to a place ever since known as
Bloody Brook, a crash of musket shots flared from the woods on each
side.  Painted Indians, and Frenchmen dressed as Indians, among whom
was a son of Widow Freneuse, dashed out.  Sixteen English were killed,
nine wounded, the rest to a man captured, to be held for ransoms
ranging from 10 pounds to 50 pounds.  Oddly enough, the very night
after the attack, before news of it had come to Annapolis, the Widow
Freneuse disappears from the fort.  Henceforth Paul Mascarene's men
kept guard night and day, and slept in their boots.  Ever like a
sinister shadow of evil moved St. Castin and his raiders through the
Acadian wildwoods.

Only one thing prevented the French recapturing Port Royal at this
time.  All troops were required to defend Quebec itself from invasion.

Nicholson's success at Port Royal spurred England and her American
colonies to a more ambitious project,--to capture Quebec and subjugate
Canada.  This time Nicholson was to head twenty-five hundred provincial
troops by way of Lake Champlain to the St. Lawrence, while a British
army of twelve thousand, half soldiers, half marines, on fifteen
frigates and forty-six transports, was to sail from Boston for Quebec.
The navy was under command of Sir Hovender Walker; the army, of General
Jack Hill, a court favorite of Queen Anne's, more noted for {203} his
graces than his prowess.  The whole expedition is one of the most
disgraceful in the annals of English war.  The fleet left Boston on
July 30, 1711, Nicholson meanwhile waiting encamped on Lake Champlain.
Early in August the immense fleet had rounded Sable Island and was off
the shores of Anticosti.  Though there was no good pilot on board, the
two commanders nightly went to bed and slept the sleep of the just.
Off Egg Islands, on the night of August 22, there was fog and a strong
east wind.  Walker evidently thought he was near the south shore,
ignorant of the strong undertow of the tide here, which had carried his
ships thirty miles off the course.  The water was rolling in the lumpy
masses of a choppy cross sea when a young captain of the regulars
dashed breathlessly into Walker's stateroom and begged him "for the
Lord's sake to come on deck, for there are reefs ahead and we shall all
be lost!"

With a seaman's laugh at a landsman's fears, the Admiral donned
dressing gown and slippers and shuffled up to the decks.  A pale moon
had broken through the ragged fog wrack, and through the white light
they plainly saw mountainous breakers straight ahead.  Walker shouted
to let the anchor go and drive to the wind.  Above the roar of breakers
and trample of panic-stricken seamen over decks could be heard the
minute guns of the other ships firing for help.  Then pitch darkness
fell with slant rains in a deluge.  The storm abated, but all night
long, above the boom of an angry sea, could be heard shrieks and
shoutings for help; and by the light of the Admiral's ship could be
seen the faces of the dead cast up by the moil of the sea.  Before dawn
eight transports had suffered shipwreck and one thousand lives were

It was a night to put fear in the hearts of all but very brave men, and
neither Walker nor Hill proved man enough to stand firm to the shock.
Walker ascribed the loss to the storm and the storm to Providence; and
when war council was held three days later Jack Hill, the court dandy,
was only too glad of excuse to turn tail and flee to England without
firing a gun.  Poor old Nicholson, waiting with his provincials up on
Lake Champlain, {204} goes into apoplexy with tempests of rage and
chagrin, when he hears the news, stamping the ground, tearing off his
wig, and shouting, "Rogues! rogues!"  He burns his fort and disbands
his men.

The Peace of Utrecht in 1713 for the time closed the war.  France had
been hopelessly defeated in Europe, and the terms were favorable to

All of Hudson Bay was to be restored to the English; but--note well--it
was not specified where the boundaries were to be between Hudson Bay
and Quebec.  That boundary dispute came down as a heritage to modern
days--thanks to the incompetency and ignorance of the statesmen who
arranged the treaty.

Acadia was given to England, but Cape Breton was retained by the
French, and--note well--it was not stated whether Acadia included New
Brunswick and Maine, as the French formerly contended, or included only
the peninsula south of the Bay of Fundy.  That boundary dispute, too,
came down.

Newfoundland was acknowledged as an English possession, but the French
retained the islands of St. Pierre and Miquelon, with fishing
privileges on the shores of Newfoundland.  That concession, too, has
come down to trouble modern days,--thanks to the same defenders of
colonial interests.

The Iroquois were acknowledged to be subjects of England, but it was
not stated whether that concession included the lands of the Ohio
raided and subjugated by the Iroquois; and that vagueness was destined
to cost both New France and New England some of its best blood.

It has been stated, and stated many times without dispute, that when
England sacrificed the interests of her colonies in boundary
settlements, she did so because she was in honor bound to observe the
terms of treaties.  One is constrained to ask whose ignorance was
responsible for the terms of those treaties.

Looking back on the record so far,--both of France and England,--which
has spent the more both of substance and of life for defense; the
mother countries or the colonies?



FROM 1713 TO 1755

La Vérendrye's adventuring to the West--Adventurers reach Lake
Winnipeg--From Assiniboine to Missouri--Intrigue with Indians--The
building of Louisburg--The siege of the great fort--Jokes bandied by
fighters--Quarrels left unsettled--Beyond the Alleghenies--Washington
and Jumonville--Braddock's march--Defeat of Braddock--Abbé Le
Loutre--The Acadians--Deportation of French--At Lake Champlain--Dieskau

What with clandestine raids and open wars, it might be thought that the
little nation of New France had vent enough for the buoyant energy of
its youth.  While the population of the English colonies was nearing
the million mark, New France had not 60,000 inhabitants by 1759.  Yet
what had the little nation, whose mainspring was at Quebec,
accomplished?  Look at the map!  Her bushrovers had gone overland to
Hudson Bay far north as Nelson.  Before 1700 Duluth had forts at
Kaministiquia (near modern Fort Williams) on Lake Superior.  Radisson,
Marquette, Jolliet, and La Salle had blazed a trail to the Mississippi
from what is now Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico.  By 1701 La Motte
Cadillac had built what is now Detroit in order to stop the progress of
the English traders up the lakes to Michilimackinac; and by 1727 the
Company of the Sioux had forts far west as Lake Pepin.  With Quebec as
the hub of the wheel, draw spokes across the map of North America.
Where do they reach?  From Quebec to the Gulf of Mexico, to the
Missouri, to the Upper Mississippi, to Lake Superior, to Hudson Bay.
Who blazed the way through these far pathless wilds?  Nameless
wanderers dressed in rags and tatters,--outcasts of society, forest
rovers lured by the Unknown as by a siren, soldiers of fortune,
penniless, in debt, heartbroken, slandered, persecuted, driven by the
demon of their own genius to earth's ends,--and to ruin!

Spite of clandestine raids and open wars, New France was now setting
herself to stretch the lines of her discoveries farther westward.

It will be remembered it was at Three Rivers that the Indians of the Up
Country paused on their way down the St. Lawrence.  {206} From the days
of Radisson in 1660 the passion for discovery had been in the very air
of Three Rivers.  In this little fort was born in 1686 Pierre Gaultier
Varennes de La Vérendrye, son of a French officer.  From childhood the
boy's ear must have been accustomed to the uncouth babblings of the
half-naked Indians, whose canoes came swarming down the river soon as
ice broke up in spring.  One can guess that in his play the boy many a
time simulated Indian voyageur, bushrover, coming home clad in furs,
the envy of the villagers.  At fourteen young Pierre had decided that
he would be a great explorer, but destiny for the time ruled otherwise.
At eighteen he was among the bushraiders of New England.  Nineteen
found him fighting the English in Newfoundland.  Then came the honor
coveted by all Canadian boys,--an appointment to the King's army in
Europe.  Young La Vérendrye was among the French forces defeated by the
great Marlborough; but the Peace of Utrecht sent him back to Canada,
aged twenty-seven, to serve in the far northern fur post of Nepigon,
eating his heart out with ambition.

It was here the dreams of his childhood emerged like a commanding
destiny.  Old Indian chief Ochagach drew maps on birch bark of a trail
to the Western Sea.  La Vérendrye took canoe for Quebec, and, with
heart beating to the passion of a secret ambition, laid the drawings
before Governor Beauharnois.  He came just in the nick of time.
English traders were pressing westward.  New France lent ready ear for
schemes of wider empire.  The court could grant no money for
discoveries, but it gave La Vérendrye permission for a voyage and
monopoly in furs over the lands he might discover; but the lands must
be found before there would be furs, and here began the mundane worries
of La Vérendrye's glory.

Montreal merchants outfitted him, but that meant debt; and his little
party of fifty grizzled woodrovers set out with their ninety-foot birch
canoes from Montreal on June 8, 1731.  Three sons were in his party and
a nephew, Jemmeraie, from the Sioux country of the west.  Every foot
westward had been consecrated by heroism to set the pulse of
red-blooded men jumping.  There {207} was the seigniory of La Chine,
named in derision of La Salle's project to find a path to China.  There
was the Long Sault, where Dollard had fought the Iroquois.  There were
the pink granite islands of Georgian Bay, where the Jesuits had led
their harried Hurons.  There was Michilimackinac, with the brawl of its
vice and brandy and lawless traders from the woods, where La Motte
Cadillac ruled before going to found Detroit.  Seventy-eight days from
Montreal, there were the pictured rocks of Lake Superior, purple and
silent and deep as ocean, which Radisson had coasted on his way to the
Mississippi.  Then La Vérendrye came to Duluth's old stamping

Jeffery's map, 1762)]

The home-bound boats were just leaving the fur posts for the St.
Lawrence.  Frosts had already stripped the trees of foliage, and winter
would presently lock all avenues of retreat in six months' ice.  La
Vérendrye's men began to doubt the wisdom of chasing a will-o'-the-wisp
to an unknown Western Sea.  The explorer sent half the party forward
with his nephew Jemmeraie and his son Jean, while he himself remained
at Kaministiquia with the mutineers to forage for provisions.  {208}
Winter found Jemmeraie's men on the Minnesota side of Rainy Lake, where
they built Fort Pierre and drove a rich trade in furs with the encamped
Crees.  In summer of 1732 came La Vérendrye, his men in gayest apparel
marching before the awe-struck Crees with bugle blowing and flags
flying.  Then white men and Crees advanced in canoes to the Lake of the
Woods, coasting from island to island through the shadowy defiles of
the sylvan rocks along the Minnesota shore to the northwest angle.
Here a second winter witnessed the building of a second post, Fort St.
Charles, with four rows of fifteen-foot palisades and thatched-roofed
log cabins.  The Western Sea seemed far as ever,--like the rainbow of
the child, ever fleeing as pursued,--and La Vérendrye's merchant
partners were beginning to curse him for a rainbow chaser.  He had been
away three years, and there were no profits.  Suspicious that he might
be defrauding them by private trade or sacrificing their interests to
his own ambitions, they failed to send forward provisions for this
year.  La Vérendrye was in debt to his men for three years' wages, in
debt to his partners for three years' provisions.  To fail now he dared
not.  Go forward he could not, so he hurried down to Montreal, where he
prevailed on the merchants to continue supplies by the simple argument
that, if they stopped now, there would be total loss.

Young Jean La Vérendrye and Jemmeraie have meanwhile descended Winnipeg
River's white fret of waterfalls to Winnipeg Lake, where they build
Fort Maurepas, near modern Alexander,--and wait.  Fishing failed.  The
hunt failed.  The winter of 1735-1736 proved of such terrible severity
that famine stalked through the western woods.  La Vérendrye's three
forts were reduced to diet of skins, moccasin soup, and dog meat.  In
desperation Jemmeraie set out with a few voyageurs to meet the
returning commander, but privation had undermined his strength.  He
died on the way and was buried in his hunter's blanket beside an
unknown stream between Lake Winnipeg and the Lake of the Woods.
Accompanied by the priest Aulneau, young Jean de La Vérendrye decided
to rush canoes down from the Lake of the Woods to Michilimackinac for
food and powder.  A furious pace was {209} to be kept all the way to
Lake Superior.  The voyageurs had risen early one morning in June, and
after paddling some miles through the mist had landed to breakfast when
a band of marauding Sioux fell on them with a shout.  The priest
Aulneau fell pierced in the head by a stone-pointed arrow.  Young Jean
La Vérendrye was literally hacked to pieces.  Not a man of the
seventeen French escaped, and Massacre Island became a place of ill
omen to the French from that day.  At last came the belated supplies,
and by February of 1737 La Vérendrye had moved his main forces west to
Lake Winnipeg.  This was no Western Sea, though the wind whipped the
lake like a tide,--which explained the Indian legend of an inland
ocean.  Though it was no Western Sea, it was a new empire for France.
The bourne of the Unknown still fled like the rainbow, and La Vérendrye
still pursued.


Down to Quebec for more supplies with tales of a vast Beyond Land!
Back to Lake Winnipeg by September of 1738 with canoes gliding up the
muddy current of Red River for the Unknown Land of the Assiniboines;
past Nettley Creek, then known as Massacre Creek or Murderers' River,
from the Sioux having slain the encamped wives and children of the Cree
who had gone to Hudson Bay with their furs; between the wooded banks of
what are now East and West Selkirk, flat to left, high to right;
tracking up the Rapids of St. Andrews, thick oak woods to east, {210}
rippling prairie russet in the autumn rolling to the west,--La
Vérendrye and his voyageurs came to the forks of Red River and the
Assiniboine, or what is now known as the city of Winnipeg.  Where the
two rivers met on the flats to the west were the high scaffoldings of
an ancient Cree graveyard, bizarre and eerie and ghostlike between the
voyageurs and the setting sun.  On the high river bank of what is now
known as Assiniboine Avenue gleamed the white skin of ten Cree tepees,
where two war chiefs waited to meet La Vérendrye.  Drawing up their
canoes near where the bridge now spans between St. Boniface and
Winnipeg, the voyageurs came ashore.

It was a fair scene that greeted them, such a scene as any westerner
may witness to-day of a warm September night when the sun hangs low
like a blood-red shield, and the evening breeze touches the rustling
grasses of the prairie beyond the city to the waves of an ocean.  It
was not the Western Sea, but it was a Sea of Prairie.  It was a New
World, unbounded by hill or forest, spacious as the very airs of
heaven, fenced only by the blue dip of a shimmering horizon.  It was a
world, though La Vérendrye knew it not, five times larger than New
France, half as big as all Europe.  He had discovered the Canadian

One can guess how the tired wanderers at rest beneath the uptilted
canoes that night wondered whither their quest would lead them over the
fire-dyed horizon where the sun was sinking as over a sea.  The Cree
chiefs told them of other lands and other peoples to the south, "who
trade with a people who dwelt on the great waters beyond the mountains
of the setting sun,"--the Spaniards.

Leaving men to knock up a trading post near the suburb now known as
Fort Rouge, La Vérendrye, on September 26, steers his canoes up the
shallow Assiniboine far as what is now known as Portage La Prairie,
where a trail leads overland to the Saskatchewan and so down to the
English traders of Hudson Bay.  But this is not the trail to the
Western Sea; La Vérendrye's quest is set towards those people "who live
on the great waters to the south."



Fort de La Reine is built at the Portage of the Prairie, and October
18, to beat of drum, with flag flying, La Vérendrye marches forth with
fifty-two men towards Souris River for the land of the Mandanes on the
Missouri.  December 3 he is welcomed to the Mandane villages; but here
is no Western Sea, only the broad current of the Missouri rolling
turbulent and muddy southward towards the Mississippi; but the Mandanes
tell of a people to the far west, "who live on the great waters bitter
for drinking, who dress in armor and dwell in stone houses."  These
must be the Spaniards.  La Vérendrye's quest has become a receding
phantom.  Leaving men to learn the Missouri dialects, La Vérendrye
marched in the teeth of mid-winter storms back to the Portage of the
Prairie on the Assiniboine.  Of that march, space forbids to tell.  A
blizzard raged, driving the fine snows into eyes and skin like hot
salt.  When the marchers camped at night they had to bury themselves in
snow to keep from freezing.  Drifts covered all landmarks.  The men
lost their bearings, doubled back on their own tracks, were
frost-bitten, buffeted by the storm, and short of food.  Christmas
{212} was passed in the camps of wandering Assiniboines, and February
10, 1739, the fifty men staggered, weak and starving, back to the
Portage of the Prairie.

The wanderings of La Vérendrye and his sons for the next few years led
southwestward far as the Rockies in the region of Montana,
northwestward far as the Bow River branch of the Saskatchewan.
Meanwhile, all La Vérendrye's property had been seized by his
creditors.  Jealous rivals were clamoring for possession of his fur
posts.  The King had conferred on him the Order of the Cross of St.
Louis, but eighteen years of exposure and worry had broken the
explorer's health.  On the eve of setting out again for the west he
died suddenly on the 6th of December, 1749, at Montreal.

Look again at the map!  The spokes of the wheel running out from Quebec
extend to the Gulf of Mexico on the south, to the Rockies on the west,
to Hudson Bay on the north.  And the population of New France does not
yet number 60,000 people.  Is it any wonder French Canadians look back
on these days as the Golden Age?

And while the bushrovers of Canada are pushing their way through the
wilderness westward, there come slashing, tramping, swearing, stamping
through the mountainous wilds of West and East Siberia the Cossack
soldiers of Peter the Great, led by the Dane, Vitus Bering, bound on
discovery to the west coast of America.  La Vérendrye's men have
crossed only half a continent.  Bering's Russians cross the width of
two continents, seven thousand miles, then launch their crazily planked
ships over unknown northern seas for America.  From 1729 to August of
1742 toil the Russian sea voyagers.  Their story is not part of
Canada's history.  Suffice to say, December of 1741 finds the Russian
crews cast away on two desert islands of Bering Sea west of Alaska, now
known as the Commander Islands.  Half the crew of seventy-seven perish
of starvation and scurvy.  Bering himself lies dying in a sandpit, with
the earth spread over him for warmth.  Outside the sand holes, {213}
where the Russians crouch, scream hurricane gales and white billows and
myriad sea birds.  The ships have been wrecked.  The Russians are on an
unknown island.  Day dawn, December 8, lying half buried in the sand,
Bering breathes his last.  On rafts made of wreckage the remnant of his
crew find way back to Asia, but they have discovered a trail across the
sea to a new land.  Fur hunters are moving from the east, westward.
Fur hunters are moving from the west, eastward.  These two tides will
meet and clash at a later era.

The Treaty of Utrecht had stopped open war, but that did not prevent
the bushrovers from raiding the border lands of Maine, of
Massachusetts, of New York.  The story of one raid is the story of all,
and several have already been related.  Now comes a half century of
petty war that raged on the border lands from Saratoga and Northfield
to Maine and New Brunswick.  The story of these "little wars," as the
French called them, belongs more to the history of the United States
than Canada.

Nor did the Peace of Utrecht stop the double dealing and intrigue by
which European rulers sought to use bigoted missionaries and ignorant
Indians as pawns in the game of statecraft.

"Sentiments of opposition to the English in Acadia must be secretly
fostered," commanded the King of France in 1715, two years after Acadia
had been deeded over to England.  "The King is pleased with the efforts
of Père Rasle to induce the Indians not to allow the English to settle
on their lands," runs the royal dispatch of 1721 regarding the border
massacres of Maine.  "Advise the missionaries in Acadia to do nothing
that may serve as a pretext for sending them out of the country, but
have them induce the Indians to organize enterprises against the
English," command the royal instructions of 1744.  "The Indians,"
writes the Canadian Governor, "can be depended on to bring in the
scalps of the English as long as we furnish ammunition.  This is the
opinion of the missionary, M. Le Loutre."  Again, from the Governor of
New France: "If the settlers of {214} Acadia hesitate to rise against
their English masters, we can employ threats of the Indians and force.
It is inconceivable that the English would try to remove these people.
Letters from M. Le Loutre report that his Indians have intercepted
dispatches of the English officers.  M. Le Loutre will keep us informed
of everything in Acadia.  We have furnished him with secret signals to
our ships, which will tell us of every movement on the part of the

Of all the hotbeds of intrigue, Acadia, from its position, had become
the worst.  Here was a population of French farmers, which in half a
century had increased to 12,000, held in subjection by an English
garrison at Annapolis of less than two hundred soldiers so destitute
they had neither shoes nor stockings, coats nor bedding.  The French
were guaranteed in the Treaty of Utrecht the freedom and privileges of
their religion by the English; but in matters temporal as well as
spiritual they were absolutely subject to priests, acting as spies for
the Quebec plotters.

France, as has been told, retained Cape Breton (Isle Royal) and Prince
Edward Island (Isle St. Jean), and the Treaty of Utrecht had hardly
been signed before plans were drawn on a magnificent scale for a French
fort on Cape Breton to effect a threefold purpose,--to command the sea
towards Boston, to regain Acadia, to protect the approach to the River
St. Lawrence.

The Island of Cape Breton is like a hand with its fingers stuck out in
the sea.  The very tip of a long promontory commanding one of the
southern arms of the sea was chosen for the fort that was to be the
strongest in all America.  On three sides were the sea, with outlying
islands suitable for powerful batteries and a harbor entrance that was
both narrow and deep.  To the rear was impassable muskeg--quaking moss
above water-soaked bog.  Two weaknesses only had the fort.  There were
hills to right and left from which an enemy might pour destruction
inside the walls, but the royal engineers of France depended on the
outlying island batteries preventing any enemy gaining possession of
these hills.  By 1720 walls thirty-six feet thick had encircled {215}
an area of over one hundred acres.  Outside the rear wall had been
excavated a ditch forty feet deep and eighty wide.  Bristling from the
six bastions of the walls were more than one hundred and eighty heavy
cannon.  Besides the two batteries commanding the entrance to the
harbor was an outer Royal Battery of forty cannon directly across the
water from the fort, on the next finger of the island.  Twenty years
was the fort in building, costing what in those days was regarded as an
enormous sum of money,--equal to $10,000,000.  Such was Louisburg,
impregnable as far as human foresight could judge,--the refuge of
corsairs that preyed on Boston commerce; the haven of the schemers who
intrigued to wean away the Acadians from English rule, the guardian
sentinel of all approach to the St. Lawrence.

"It would be well," wrote the King the very next year after the treaty
was signed, "to attract the Acadians to Cape Breton, but act with
caution."  And now twenty years had passed.  Some Acadians had gone to
Cape Breton and others to Prince Edward Island; but statecraft judged
the simple Acadian farmer would be more useful where he was,--on the
spot in Acadia, ready to rebel when open war would give the French of
Louisburg a chance to invade.

Late in 1744 Europe breaks into that flame of war known as the Austrian
Succession.  Before either Quebec or Boston knows of open war,
Louisburg has word of it and sends her rangers burning fishing towns
and battering at the rotten palisades of Annapolis (Port Royal).  Port
Royal is commanded by that same Paul Mascarene of former wars, grown
old in service.  The French bid him save himself by surrender before
their fleet comes.  Though Mascarene has less than a hundred men, the
weather is in his favor.  It is September.  Winter will drive the
invaders home, so he sends back word that he will bide his time till
the hostile fleet comes.  As for the Abbé Le Loutre, let the
treacherous priest beware how he brings his murderous Indians within
range of the fort guns!  Meanwhile the Acadian habitants are threatened
with death if they do not rise to aid the {216} French, but they too
bide their time, for if they rebel and fail, that too means death; and
"_the Neutrals_" refuse to stir till the invaders, from lack of
provisions, are forced to decamp, and the Abbé Le Loutre, with his
black hat drawn down over his eyes, vanishes into forest with his crew
of painted warriors.

News of the war and of the ravaging of Acadian fishing towns set
Massachusetts in flame.  To Boston, above all New England towns, was
Louisburg a constant danger.  The thing seemed absolute stark
madness,--the thoughtless daring of foolhardy enthusiasts,--but it is
ever enthusiasm which accomplishes the impossible; and April 30, 1745,
after only seven weeks of preparation, an English fleet of sixty-eight
ships--some accounts say ninety, including the whalers and transports
gathered along the coast towns--sails into Gabarus Bay, behind
Louisburg, where the waters have barely cleared of ice.  William
Pepperrell, a merchant, commands the four thousand raw levies of
provincial troops, the most of whom have never stepped to martial music
before in their lives.  Admiral Warren has come up from West India
waters with his men-of-war to command the united fleets.  Early Monday
morning, against a shore wind, the boats are tacking to land, when the
alarm bells begin ringing and ringing at Louisburg and a force of one
hundred and fifty men dashes downshore for Flat Cove to prevent the
landing.  Pepperrell out-tricks the enemy by leaving only a few boats
to make a feint of landing at the Cove, while he swings his main fleet
inshore round a bend in the coast a mile away.  Here, with a prodigious
rattling of lowered sails and anchor chains, the crews plunge over the
rolling waves, pontooning a bridge of small boats ashore.  By nightfall
the most of the English have landed, and spies report the harbor of
Louisburg alive with torches where the French are sinking ships to
obstruct the entrance and setting fire to fishing stages that might
interfere with cannon aim.  The next night, May 1, Vaughan's New
Hampshire boys--raw farmers, shambling in their gait, singing as they
march--swing through the woods along the marsh {217} behind the fort,
and take up a position on a hill to the far side of Louisburg, creating
an enormous bonfire with the French tar and ships' tackling stored
here.  The result of this harmless maneuver was simply astounding.  It
will be recalled that Louisburg had an outer battery of forty cannon on
this side.  The French soldiers holding this battery mistook the
bonfire for the {218} English attacking forces, and under cover of
darkness abandoned the position,--battery, guns, powder and all,--which
the English promptly seized.  This was the Royal Battery, which
commanded the harbor and could shell into the very heart of the fort.


The next thing for the English was to get their heavy guns ashore
through a rolling surf of ice-cold water.  For two weeks the men stood
by turns to their necks in the surf, steadying the pontoon gangway as
the great cannon were trundled ashore; and this was the least of their
difficulties.  The question was how to get their cannon across the
marsh behind the fort to the hill on the far side.  The cannon would
sink from their own weight in such a bog, and either horses or oxen
would flounder to death in a few minutes.  Again, the fool-hardy
enthusiasm of the raw levies overcame the difficulty.  They built large
stone boats, raft-shaped, such as are used on farms to haul stones over
ground too rough for wagons.  Hitching to these, teams of two hundred
men stripped to midwaist, they laboriously hauled the cannon across the
quaking moss to the hills commanding the rear of the fort, bombs and
balls whizzing overhead all the while, fired from the fort bastions.
It was cold, damp spring weather.  The men who were not soaked to their
necks in surf and bog were doing picket duty alongshore, sleeping in
their boots.  Consequently, in three weeks, half Pepperrell's force
became deadly ill.  At this time, within two days, occurred both a
cheering success and a disheartening rebuff.  A French man-of-war with
seventy cannon and six hundred men was seen entering Louisburg.  As if
in panic fright, one of the small English ships fled.  The French ship
pursued.  In a trice she was surrounded by the English fleet and
captured.  The flight of the little vessel had been a trick.  A few
days later four hundred English in whaleboats attempted the mad project
of attacking the Island Battery at the harbor entrance.  The boats set
out about midnight with muffled oars, but a wind rose, setting a
tremendous surf lashing the rocks, and yet the invaders might have
succeeded but for a piece of rashness.  A hundred men had gained the
shore when, with the thoughtlessness of schoolboys, they uttered a
jubilant yell.  {219} Instantly, porthole, platform, gallery, belched
death through the darkness.  The story is told that a raw New England
lad was in the act of climbing the French flagstaff to hang out his own
red coat as English flag when a Swiss guard hacked him to pieces.  The
boats not yet ashore were sunk by the blaze of cannon.  A few escaped
back in the darkness, but by daylight over one hundred English had been
captured.  Cannon, mortars, and musketoons were mounted to command the
fort inside the walls, and a continuous rain of fire began from the
hills.  In vain Duchambon, the French commander, waited for
reënforcements from Canada.  Convent, hospital, barracks, all the
houses of the town, were peppered by bombs till there was not a roof
intact in the place.  The soldiers, of whom there were barely two
thousand, were ready to mutiny.  The citizens besought Duchambon to
surrender.  Provisions ran out.  Looking down from the tops of the
walls, cracking jokes with the English across the ditch, the French
soldiers counted more than a thousand scaling ladders ready for
hand-to-hand assault, and a host of barrels filled with mud behind
which the English sharpshooters crouched.  It had just been arranged
between Warren and Pepperrell that the {220} former should attack by
sea while the latter assaulted by land, when on June 16 the French
capitulated.  How the New England enthusiasts ran rampant through the
abandoned French fort need not be told.  How Parson Moody, famous for
his long prayers, hewed down images in the Catholic chapel till he was
breathless and then came to the officers' state dinner so exhausted
that when asked to pronounce blessing he could only mutter, "Good Lord,
we have so much to thank Thee for, time is too short; we must leave it
to eternity.  Amen"; how the New Englanders, unused to French wines,
drank themselves torpid on the stores of the fort cellar; how the
French the next year made superhuman effort to regain Louisburg, only
to have a magnificent fleet of one hundred and fifty sail wrecked on
Sable Island, Duke d'Anville, the commander, dying of heartbreak on his
ship anchored near Halifax, his successor killing himself with his own
sword,--cannot be told here.  Louisburg was the prize of the war, and
England threw the prize away by giving it back to France in the Treaty
of Aix-la-Chapelle in 1748.  The English government paid back the
colonies for their outlay, but of all the rich French pirate ships
loaded with booty, captured at Louisburg by leaving the French flag
flying, not a penny's worth went to the provincial troops.  Warren's
seamen received all the loot.


Like all preceding treaties, the Peace of Aix-la-Chapelle left
unsettled the boundaries between New France and New England.  In
Acadia, in New York, on the Ohio, collisions were bound to come.

In Acadia the English send their officers to the Isthmus of Chignecto
to establish a fort near the bounds of what are now Nova Scotia and New
Brunswick.  The priestly spy, Louis Joseph Le Loutre, leads his wild
Micmac savages through the farm settlement round the English fort,
setting fire to houses putting a torch even to the church, and so
compelling the habitants of the boundary to come over to the French and
take sides.  The treaty has restored Louisburg to the French, but the
very {221} next year England sends out Edward Cornwallis with two
thousand settlers to establish the English fort now known as Halifax.
By 1752 there are four thousand people at the new fort, though the
Indian raiders miss no occasion to shoot down wayfarers and farmers;
and the French Governor at Quebec continues his bribes--as much as
eight hundred dollars a year to a man--to stir up hostility to the
English and prevent the Acadian farmers taking the oath of fidelity to
England.  So much for the peace treaty in Acadia.  It was not peace; it
was farce.


In New York state matters were worse.  The Iroquois had been
acknowledged allies of the English, and before 1730 the English fort at
Oswego had been built at the southeast corner of Lake Ontario to catch
the fur trade of the northern tribes coming down the lakes to New
France, and to hold the Iroquois' friendship.  Also, as French traders
pass up the lake to Fort Frontenac (Kingston) and Niagara with their
national flag flying from the prow of canoe and flatboat, chance
bullets from the {222} English fort ricochet across the advancing
prows, and soldiers on the galleries inside Fort Oswego take bets on
whether they can hit the French flag.  Prompt as a gamester, New France
checkmates this move.  Peter Schuyler has been settling English farmers
round Lake Champlain.  At Crown Point, long known as Scalp Point, where
the lake narrows and portage runs across to Lake George and the Mohawk
land, the French in 1731 erect a strong fort.  As for the English
traders at Fort Oswego catching the tribes from the north, New France
counterchecks that by sending Portneuf in April of 1749, only a year
after the peace, to the Toronto portage where the Indians come from the
Upper Lakes by way of Lake Simcoe.  What is now known as Toronto is
named Rouillé, after a French minister; and as if this were not
checkmate enough to the English advancing westward, the Sulpician
priest from Montreal, Abbé Picquet, zealously builds a fort straight
north of Oswego, on the south side of the St. Lawrence, to keep the
Iroquois loyal to France.  Picquet calls his fort "Presentation."  His
enemies call it "Picquet's Folly."  It is known to-day as Ogdensburg.
Look at the map.  France's frontier line is guarded by forts that stand
like sentinels at the gateways of all waters leading to the
interior,--Ogdensburg, Kingston, Toronto, Niagara, Detroit,
Michilimackinac, and La Vérendrye's string of forts far west as the
Rockies.  New York's frontier line is guarded by one fort
only,--Oswego.  Here too, as in Acadia, the peace is a farce.


But it was in the valley of the Ohio where the greatest struggle over
boundaries took place.  One year after the peace, Céloron de Bienville
is sent in July, 1749, to take possession of the {223} Ohio for France.
France claims right to this region by virtue of La Salle's explorations
sixty years previously, and of all those French bushrangers who have
roved the wilds from the Great Lakes to Louisiana.  Small token did
France take of La Salle's exploits while he lived, but great store do
her statesmen set by his voyages now that he has been sixty years dead.
"But pause!" commands the English Governor of Virginia.  "Since time
immemorial have our traders wandered over the Great Smoky Mountains,
over the Cumberlands, over the Alleghenies, down the Tennessee and the
Kanawha and the Monongahela and the Ohio to the Mississippi."  As a
matter of fact, one Major General Wood had in 1670 and 1674 sent his
men overland, if not so far as the Mississippi, then certainly as far
as the Ohio and the valley of the Mississippi.  But Wood was a private
adventurer.  For years his exploit had been forgotten.  No record of it
remained but an account written by his men, Batts and Hallam.  The
French declared the record was a myth, and it has, in fact, been so
regarded by the most of historians.  Yet, curiously enough, ranging
through some old family papers of the Hudson's Bay Company in the
Public Records, London, I found with Wood's own signature his record of
the trip across the mountains to the Indians of the Ohio and the
Mississippi.  It is probable that the {224} English cared quite as much
for claims founded on La Salle's voyage as the French cared for claims
founded on the horseback trip of Major General Wood's men.  The fact
remained: here were the English traders from Virginia pressing
northward by way of the Ohio; here were the French adventurers pressing
south by way of the Ohio.  As in Acadia and New York, peace or no
peace, a clash was inevitable.


Duquesne has come out governor of Canada, and by 1753 has dispatched a
thousand men into the Ohio valley, who blaze a trail through the
wilderness and string a line of forts from Presqu' Isle (Erie) on Lake
Erie southward to Fort Duquesne at the junction of the Allegheny and
Monongahela, where Pittsburg stands to-day.

One December night at Fort Le Boeuf, on the trail to the Ohio, the
French commandant was surprised to see a slim youth of twenty years
ride out of the rain-drenched, leafless woods, followed by four or five
whites and Indians with a string of belled pack-horses.  The young
gentleman introduces himself with great formality, though he must use
an interpreter, for he does not speak French.  He is Major George
Washington, sent by Governor Dinwiddie of Virginia to know why the
French have been seizing the fur posts of English traders in this
region.  The French commander, Saint Pierre, receives the young
Virginian courteously, plies master and men with such lavish
hospitality that Washington has much trouble to keep his drunk Indians
from deserting, and dismisses his visitor with the smooth but bootless
response that as France and England are at peace he cannot answer
Governor Dinwiddie's message till he has heard from the Governor of
Canada, Marquis Duquesne.  Not much satisfaction for emissaries who had
forded ice-rafted rivers and had tramped the drifted forests for three
hundred miles.


By January of 1754 Washington is back in Virginia.  By May he is on the
trail again, blazing a path through the wilderness down the Monongahela
towards the French fort; for what purpose one may guess, though these
were times of piping peace.  Come {225} an old Indian chief and an
English bushwhacker one morning with word that fifty French raiders are
on the trail ten miles away; for what purpose one may guess, spite of
peace.  Instantly Washington sends half a hundred Virginia frontiersmen
out scouting.  They find no trace of raiders, but the old chief picks
up the trail of the ambushed French.  Here they had broken branches
going through the woods; there a moccasin track punctures the spongy
mold; here leaves have been scattered to hide camp ashes.  At midnight,
with the rain slashing through the forest black as pitch, Washington
sets out with forty men, following his Indian guide.  Through the dark
they feel rather than follow the trail, and it is a slow but an easy
trick to those acquainted with wildwood travel.  Leave the path by as
much as a foot length and the foliage lashes you back, or the windfall
trips you up, or the punky path becomes punctured beneath moccasin
tread.  By day dawn, misty and gray in the May woods, the English are
at the Indian camp and march forward escorted by the redskins, single
file, silent as ghosts, alert as tigers.  Raindrip swashes on the
buckskin coats.  Muskets are loaded and carefully cased from the wet.
The old chief stops suddenly . . . and points!  There lie the French in
a rock ravine sheltered by the woods like a cave.  The next instant the
French had leaped up with a whoop.  Washington shouted "Fire!"  When
the smoke of the musket crash cleared, ten French lay dead, among them
their officer, Jumonville; {226} and twenty-two others surrendered.  No
need to dispute whether Washington was justified in firing on thirty
bush rovers in time of peace!  The bushrovers had already seized
English forts and were even now scouring the country for English
traders.  For a week their scouts had followed Washington as spies.

Expecting instant retaliation from Fort Duquesne, Washington retreated
swiftly to his camping place at Great Meadows and cast up a log
barricade known as Fort Necessity.  A few days later comes a company of
regular troops.  By July 1 he has some four hundred men, but at Fort
Duquesne are fourteen hundred French.  The French wait only for orders
from Quebec, then march nine hundred bushrovers against Washington.
July 3, towards midday, they burst from the woods whooping and yelling.
Washington chose to meet them on the open ground, but the French were
pouring a cross fire over the meadow; and to compel them to attack in
the open, Washington drew his men behind the barricade.  By nightfall
the Virginians were out of powder.  Twelve had been killed and
forty-three were wounded.  Before midnight the French beat a parley.
All they desired was that the English evacuate the fort.  To fight
longer would have risked the extermination of Washington's troops.
Terms of honorable surrender were granted, and the next day--the day
which Washington was to make immortal, July 4--the English retreated
from Fort Necessity.  Such was the peace in the Ohio valley.

Though the peace is still continued, England dispatches in 1755 two
regiments of the line under Major General Braddock to protect Virginia,
along with a fleet of twelve men-of-war under Admiral Boscawen.  France
keeps up the farce by sending out Baron Dieskau with three thousand
soldiers and Admiral La Motte with eighteen ships.  Coasting off
Newfoundland, the English encounter three of the French ships that have
gone astray in the fog.  "Is it peace or war?" shout the French across
decks.  "Peace," answers a voice from the English deck; and
instantaneously a hurricane cannonade rakes the decks of the French,
killing eighty.  Two of the French ships surrendered.  The other
escaped through the fog.  Such was the peace!

{227} So began the famous Seven Years' War; and Major General Braddock,
in session with the colonial governors, plans the campaign that is to
crush New France's pretensions south of the Great Lakes.  Acadia, Lake
Champlain, the Ohio,--these are to be the theaters of the contest.


Braddock himself, accompanied by Washington, marches with twenty-two
hundred men over the Alleghenies along the old trail of the Monongahela
against Fort Duquesne.  Of Braddock, the least said the better.  A
gambler, full of arrogant contempt towards all people and things that
were not British, hail-fellow-well-met to his boon companions,
heartless towards all outside the pale of his own pride, a blustering
bully yet dogged, and withal a gentleman after the standard of the age,
he was neither better nor worse than the times in which he lived.  Of
Braddock's men, fifteen hundred were British regulars, the rest
Virginian bushfighters; and the redcoat troops held such contempt
towards the buckskin frontiersmen that friction arose from the first
about the relative rank of regulars and provincials.  From the time
they set out, the troops had been retarded by countless delays.  There
was trouble buying up supplies of beef cattle {228} among the
frontiersmen.  Scouts scoured the country for horses and wagons to haul
the great guns and heavy artillery.  Braddock's high mightiness would
take no advice from colonials about single-file march on a bush trail
and swift raids to elude ambushed foes.  Everything proceeded slowly,
ponderously, with the system and routine of an English guardroom.
Scouts to the fore and on both flanks, three hundred bushwhackers went
ahead widening the bridle path to a twelve-foot road for the wagons;
and along this road moved the troops, five and six abreast, the red
coats agleam through the forest foliage, drums rolling, flags flying,
steps keeping time as if on parade, Braddock and his officers mounted
on spirited horses, the heavy artillery and supply wagons lagging far
behind in a winding line.


What happened has been told times without number in story and history.
It was what the despised colonials feared and any bushranger could have
predicted.  July 9, in stifling heat, the marchers had come to a loop
in the Monongahela River.  Braddock thought to avoid the loop by
fording twice.  He was now within eight miles of Fort Duquesne--the
modern Pittsburg.  Though Indian raiders had scalped some wanderers
from the trail and insolent messages had been occasionally found
scrawled in French on birch trees, not a Frenchman had been seen on the
march.  The advance guard had crossed the second ford about midday when
the road makers at a little opening beyond the river saw a white man
clothed in buckskin, but wearing an officer's badge, dash out of the
woods to the fore, wave his hat, . . . and disappear.  A moment later
the well-known war whoop of the French bushrovers tore the air to
tatters; and bullets rained from ambushed foes in a sheet of fire.  In
vain the English drums rolled . . . and rolled . . . and soldiers
shouted, "The King!  God save the King!"  One officer tried to rally
his men to rush the woods, but they were shot down by a torrent of
bullets from an unseen foe.  The Virginian bushfighters alone knew how
to meet such an emergency.  Jumping from tree to tree for shelter like
Indians dancing sideways to avoid the enemy's aim, they had broken from
rank to fight in bushman fashion when Braddock {229} came galloping
furiously from the rear and ordered them back in line.  What use was
military rank with an invisible foe?  As well shoot air as an unseen
Indian!  Again the Virginians broke rank, and the regulars, huddled
together like cattle in the shambles, fired blindly and succeeded only
in hitting their own provincial troops.  Braddock stormed and swore and
rode like a fury incarnate, roaring orders which no one could hear,
much less obey.  Five horses were shot under him and the dauntless
commander had mounted a fresh one when the big guns came plunging
forward; but the artillery on which Braddock had pinned his faith only
plowed pits in the forest mold.  Of eighty officers, sixty had fallen
and a like proportion of men.  Braddock ordered a retreat.  The march
became a panic, the panic frenzied terror, the men who had stood so
stolidly under withering fire now dashing in headlong flight from the
second to the first ford and back over the trail, breathless as if
pursued by demons!  Artillery, cattle, supplies, dispatch boxes,--all
were abandoned.  Washington's clothes had been riddled by bullets, but
he had escaped injury.  Braddock reeled from his horse mortally
wounded, to be carried {230} back on a litter to that scene of
Washington's surrender the year before.  Four days later the English
general died there.  Of the English troops, more than a thousand lay
dead, blistering in the July sun, maimed and scalped by the Indians.
Braddock was buried in his soldier's coat beside the trail, all signs
of the grave effaced to prevent vandalism.


Of all the losses the most serious were the dispatch boxes; for they
contained the English plans of campaign from Acadia to Niagara, and
were carried back to Fort Duquesne, where they put the French on guard.
The jubilant joy at the French fort need not be described.  When he
heard of the English advance, Contrecoeur, the commander, had been
cooped up with less than one thousand men, half of whom were Indians.
Had Braddock once reached Fort Duquesne, he could have starved it into
surrender without firing a gun, or shelled it into kindling wood with
his heavy artillery.  Beaujeu, an officer under Contrecoeur, had
volunteered to go out and meet the English.  "My son, my son, will you
walk into the arms of death?" demanded the Indian chiefs.  "My fathers,
will you allow me to go alone?" answered Beaujeu; and out he sallied
with six hundred picked men.  It was Beaujeu whom Braddock's men had
seen dash out and wave his hat.  The brave Frenchman fell, shot at the
first {231} volley from the English, and his Indian friends avenged his
death by roasting thirty English prisoners alive.

The Isthmus of Chignecto, or the boundary between New Brunswick and
Nova Scotia, was the scene of the border-land fights in Acadia.  To
narrate half the forays, raids, and ambuscades would require a volume.
Fights as gallant as Dollard's at the Sault waged from Beauséjour, the
French fort north of the boundary, to Grand Pré and Annapolis, where
the English were stationed.  After the founding of Halifax the Abbé Le
Loutre, whose false, foolish counsels had so often endangered the
habitant farmer, moved from his mission in the center of Acadia up to
Beauséjour on the New Brunswick side.  Here he could be seen with his
Indians toiling like a demon over the trenches, when Monckton, the
English general, came on June 1, 1855, with the British fleet, to land
his forces at Fort Lawrence, the English post on the south side.
Colonel Lawrence was now English governor of Acadia, and he had decided
with Monckton that once and for all the French of Acadia must be
subjugated.  The French of Beauséjour had in all less than fifteen
hundred men, half of whom were simple Acadian farmers forced into
unwilling service by the priest's threats of Indian raid in this world
and damnation in the next.  Day dawn of June 4 the bugles blew to arms
and the English forces, some four thousand, had marched to the south
shore of the Missaguash River, when the French on the north side
uttered a whoop and emitted a clatter of shots.  Black-hatted,
sinister, tireless, the priest could be seen urging his Indians on.
The English brought up three field cannon and under protection of their
scattering fire laid a pontoon bridge.  Crossing the river, they
marched within a mile of the fort.  That night the sky was alight with
flame; for Vergor, the French commander, and Abbé Le Loutre set fire to
all houses outside the fort walls.  In a few days the English cannon
had been placed in a circle round the fort, and set such strange music
humming in the ears of the besieged that the Acadian farmers deserted
and the priest nervously thought of flight.  Louisburg {232} could send
no aid, and still the bombs kept bursting through the roofs of the fort
houses.  One morning a bomb crashed through the roof of the breakfast
room, killing six officers on the spot; and the French at once hung out
the white flag; but when the English troops marched in on June 16, at
seven in the evening, Le Loutre had fled overland through the forests
of New Brunswick for Quebec.

There scant welcome awaited the renegade priest.  The French governors
had been willing to use him as their tool at a price ($800 a year), but
when the tool failed of its purpose they cast him aside.  Le Loutre
sailed for France, but his ship was captured by an English cruiser and
he was imprisoned for eight years on the island of Jersey.

[Illustration: GENERAL MONCKTON]

Meanwhile, how was fate dealing with the Acadian farmers?  Ever since
the Treaty of Utrecht they had been afraid to take the oath of
unqualified loyalty to England, lest New France, or rather Abbé Le
Loutre, let loose the hounds of Indian massacre on their peaceful
settlements.  Besides, had not the priest assured them year in and year
out that France would recover Acadia and put to the sword those
habitants who had forsworn France?  And they had been equally afraid to
side with the French, for in case of failure the burden of punishment
would fall on them alone.  For almost half a century they had been
known as _Neutrals_.  Of their population of 12,000, 3000 had been
lured away to Prince Edward Island and Cape Breton.  When Cornwallis
had founded Halifax he had intended to wait only till the English were
firmly established, when he would demand an oath of unqualified
allegiance from {233} the Acadians.  They, on their part, were willing
to take the oath with one proviso,--that they should never be required
to take up arms against the French; or they would have been willing to
leave Acadia, as the Treaty of Utrecht had provided, in case they did
not take the oath of allegiance.  But in the early days of English
possession the English governors were not willing they should leave.
If the Acadians had migrated, it would simply have strengthened the
French in Cape Breton and Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick.
Obstructions had been created that prevented the supply of transports
to move the Acadians.  The years had drifted on, and a new generation
had grown up, knowing nothing of treaty rights, but only that the
French were threatening them on one side if they did not rise against
England, and the English on the other side if they did not take oath of
unqualified allegiance.  Cornwallis had long since left Halifax, and
Lawrence, the English governor, while loyal to a fault, was, like
Braddock, that type of English understrapper who has wrought such
irreparable injury to English prestige purely from lack of sympathetic
insight with colonial conditions.  For years before he had become
governor, Lawrence's days had been embittered by the intrigues of the
French with the Acadian farmers.  He had been in Halifax when the Abbé
Le Loutre's Indian brigands had raided and slain as many as thirty
workmen at a time near the English fort.  He had been at the Isthmus of
Chignecto that fatal morning when some Indians dressed in the suits of
French officers waved a white flag and lured Captain Howe of the
English fort across stream, where they shot him under flag of truce in
cold blood.

These are not excuses for what Lawrence did.  Nothing can excuse the
infamy of his policy toward the Acadians.  There are few blacker crimes
in the history of the world; but these facts explain how a man of
Lawrence's standing could assume the responsibility he did.  In
addition, Lawrence was a bigoted Protestant.  He not only hated the
Acadians because they were French; he hated them as "a colony of
rattlesnakes" because they were Catholics; and being an Englishman, he
despised them {234} because they were colonials.  France and England
were now on the verge of the great struggle for supremacy in America.
Eighteen French frigates had come to Louisburg and three thousand
French regulars to Quebec.  If Lawrence did not yet know that Braddock
had been defeated on July 9 at Duquesne,--as his friends declare in his
defense,--it is a strange thing; for by August the bloody slaughter of
the Monongahela was known everywhere else in America from Quebec to New
Spain.  With Lawrence and Monckton and Murray and Boscawen and the
other English generals sent to conduct the campaign in Acadia, the
question was what to do with the French habitants.  Let two facts be
distinctly stated here and with great emphasis: first, the colonial
officers, like Winslow from Massachusetts, knew absolutely nothing of
the English officers' plans; they were not admitted to the conferences
of the English officers and were simply expected to obey orders;
second, the English government knew absolutely nothing of the English
officers' course till it was too late for remedy.  In fact, later
dispatches of that year inquire sharply what Lawrence meant by an
obscure threat to drive the Acadians out of the country.


Did a darker and more sinister motive underlie the policy of Lawrence
and his friends?  Poems, novels, histories have waged war of words over
this.  Only the facts can be stated.  Land to the extent of twenty
thousand acres each, which had belonged to {235} the Acadians, was
ultimately deeded to Lawrence and his friends.  Charges of corruption
against Lawrence himself were lodged with the British government both
by mail and by personal delegates from Halifax.  Unfortunately Lawrence
died in Halifax in 1760 before the investigation could take place; and
whether true or false, the odium of the charges rests upon his fame.

What he did with the Acadians is too well known to require telling.  In
secret conclave the infamous edict was pronounced.  Quickly messengers
were sent with secret dispatches to the officers of land forces and
ships at Annapolis, at Mines, at Chignecto, to repair to the towns of
the Acadians, where, upon opening their dispatches, they would find
their orders, which were to be kept a secret among the officers.  The
colonial officers, on reading the orders, were simply astounded.  "It
is the most grievous affair that ever I was in, in my life," declared
Winslow.  The edict was that every man, woman, and child of the
Acadians should be forcibly deported, in Lawrence's words, "in such a
way as to prevent the reunion of the colonists."  The men of the
Acadian settlements were summoned to the churches to hear the will of
the King of England.  Once inside, doors were locked, English soldiers
placed on guard with leveled bayonet, and the edict read by an officer
standing on the pulpit stairs or on a table.  The Acadians were snared
like rats in a trap.  Outside were their families, hostages for the
peaceable conduct of the men.  Inside were the brothers and husbands,
hostages for the good conduct of the families outside.  Only in a few
places was there any rioting, and this was probably caused by the
brutality of the officers.  Murray and Monckton and Lawrence refer to
their prisoners as "Popish recusants," "poor wretches," "rascals who
have been bad subjects."  While the Acadians were to be deported so
they could never reunite as a colony, it was intended to keep the
families together and allow them to take on board what money and
household goods they possessed; but there were interminable delays for
transports and supplies.  From September to December the deportation
dragged on, and when the Acadians, patient as sheep at the shambles,
became restless, some of the ships were sent off {236} with the men,
while the families were still on land.  In places the men were allowed
ashore to harvest their crops and care for their stock; but harvest and
stock fell to the victors as burning hayricks and barns nightly lighted
to flame the wooded background and placid seas of the fair Acadian
land.  Before winter set in, the Acadians had been scattered from New
England to Louisiana.  A few people in the Chignecto region had escaped
to the woods of New Brunswick, and one shipload overpowered its
officers and fled to St. John River; but in all, six thousand six
hundred people were deported.

It is the blackest crime that ever took place under the British flag,
and the expulsion was only the beginning of the sufferers' woes.  Some
people found their way to Quebec, but Quebec was destitute and in the
throes of war.  The wanderers came to actual starvation.  The others
wandered homeless in Boston, in New York, in Philadelphia, in
Louisiana.  After the peace of 1763 some eight hundred gathered
together in Boston and began the long march overland through the
forests of Maine and New Brunswick, to return to Acadia.  Singing
hymns, dragging their baggage on sleighs, pausing to hunt by the way,
these sad pilgrims toiled more than one thousand miles through forest
and swamp, and at the end of two years found themselves back in Acadia.
But they were like ghosts of the dead revisiting scenes of childhood!
Their lands were occupied by new owners.  Of their herds naught
remained but the bleaching bone heaps where the lowing cattle had
huddled in winter storms.  New faces filled their old houses.  Strange
children rambled beneath the little dormer windows of the Acadian
cottages, and the voices of the boys at play in the apple orchards
shouted in an alien tongue.  The very names of the places had vanished.
Beauséjour was now Cumberland.  Beaubassin had become Amherst.
Cobequid was now Truro.  Grand Pré was now known as Horton.  The
heart-broken people hurried on like ghosts to the unoccupied lands of
St. Mary's Bay,--St. Mary's Bay, where long ago Priest Aubry had been
lost.  Here they settled, to hew out for themselves a second home in
the wilderness.

{237} It will be recalled that Braddock's plans had been captured by
the French, and those plans told Baron Dieskau, who had come out to
command the French troops, that the English under William Johnson, a
great leader of the Iroquois, inured to bush life like an Indian, were
to attack the French fort at Crown Point on Lake Champlain.  Now
observe: on the Ohio, Braddock the regular had been defeated; in
Acadia, Lawrence and Monckton and Murray, the English generals, had
brought infamy across England's renown by their failure to understand
colonial conditions.  At Lake Champlain the conditions are reversed.
Johnson, the English leader, is, from long residence in America, almost
a colonial.  Dieskau, the commander of the French, is a veteran of
Saxon wars, but knows nothing of bushfighting.  What happens?


Dieskau had intended to attack the English at Oswego, but the plans for
Johnson on Lake Champlain brought the commander of the French rushing
up the Richelieu River with three thousand soldiers, part regulars,
part Canadians.  Crown Point--called Fort Frederick by the French--was
reached in August.  No English are here, but scouts bring word that
Johnson has built a fort on the south end of Lake George, and, leaving
only five hundred men to garrison it, is moving up the lake with his
main troops.



Fired by the French victories over Braddock, Dieskau planned to capture
the English fort and ambush Johnson on the march.  Look at the map!
The south end of Lake Champlain lies parallel with the north end of
Lake George.  The French can advance on the English one of two
ways,--portage over to Lake George and canoe up the lake to Johnson's
fort, or ascend the marsh to the south of Lake Champlain, then cross
through the woods to Johnson's fort.  Dieskau chose the latter trail.
Leaving half his men to guard the baggage, Dieskau bade fifteen hundred
picked men follow him on swiftest march with provisions in haversack
for only eight days.  September 8, 10 A.M., the marchers advance
through the woods on Johnson's fort, when suddenly they learn that
their scout has lied,--_Johnson himself is still at the fort_.  Instead
of five hundred are four thousand English.  Advancing along the trail
V-shape, regulars in the middle, Canadians and Indians on each side,
the French come on a company of five hundred English wagoners.  In the
wild mêlée of shouts the English retreat in a rabble.  "Pursue!  March!
Fire!  Force the place!" yells Dieskau, dashing forward sword in hand,
thinking to follow so closely on the heels of the rabble that he can
enter the English fort before the enemy know; but his Indians have
forsaken him, and Johnson's scouts have forewarned the approach of the
French.  Instead of ambushing {239} the English, Dieskau finds his own
army ambushed.  He had sneered at the un-uniformed plowboys of the
English.  "The more there are, the more we shall kill," he had boasted;
but now he discovers that the rude bushwhackers, "who fought like boys
in the morning, at noon fought like men, and by afternoon fought like
devils."  Their sharpshooters kept up a crash of fire to the fore, and
fifteen hundred doubled on the rear of his army, "folding us up," he
reported, "like a pack of cards."  Dieskau fell, shot in the leg and in
the knee, and a bullet struck the cartridge box of the servant who was
washing out the wounds.


"Lay my telescope and coat by me, and go!" ordered Dieskau.  "This is
as good a deathbed as anyplace.  Go!" he thundered, seeing his second
officer hesitate.  "Don't you see you are needed?  Go and sound a

A third shot penetrated the wounded commander's bladder.  Lying alone,
propped against a tree, he heard the drums rolling a retreat, when one
of the enemy jumped from the woods with pointed pistol.

"Scoundrel!" roared the dauntless Dieskau; "dare to shoot a man
weltering in his blood."  The fellow proved to be a Frenchman who had
long ago deserted to the English, and he muttered {240} out some excuse
about shooting the devil before the devil shot him; but when he found
out who Dieskau was, he had him carried carefully to Johnson's tent,
where every courtesy was bestowed upon the wounded commander.  Johnson
himself lay wounded.

All that night Iroquois kept breaking past the guard into the tent.

"What do they want?" asked Dieskau feebly.

"To skin you and eat you," returned Johnson laconically.  Whose was the
victory?  The losses had been about even,--two hundred and fifty on
each side.  Johnson had failed to advance to Crown Point, but Dieskau
had failed to dislodge Johnson.  If Dieskau had not been captured, it
is a question if either side would have considered the fight a victory.
As it was, New France was plunged in grief; joy bells rang in New
England.  Johnson was given a baronetcy and 5000 pounds for his
victory.  He had named the lake south of Lake Champlain after the
English King, Lake George.

So closed the first act in the tragic struggle for supremacy in America.



FROM 1756 TO 1763

Bigot at Quebec--New France on verge of ruin--Bigot's vampires suck
country's lifeblood--Scene on lake--Massacre at Fort William
Henry--Louisburg besieged--Surrender of famous fort--The attack at
Ticonderoga--Abercrombie's forces flee--Wolfe sails for Quebec--Signal
fires forewarn approach of enemy--Both sides become scalp
raiders--English fail at Montmorency--Slip silently down the great
river--The two armies face each other--Death of Montcalm--Why New
France fell

How stand both sides at the opening of the year 1756, on the verge of
the Seven Years' War,--the struggle for a continent?

There has been open war for more than a year, but war is not formally
declared till May 18, 1756.

Take Acadia first.

The French have been expelled.  The infamous Le Loutre is still in
prison in England, and when he is released, in 1763, he toils till his
death, in 1773, trying to settle the Acadian refugees on some of the
French islands of the English Channel.  The smiling farms of Grand Pré
and Port Royal lie a howling waste.  Only a small English garrison
holds Annapolis, where long ago Marc L'Escarbot and Champlain held
happy revel; and the seat of government has been transferred to
Halifax, now a settlement and fort of some five thousand people.  So
much for the English.  Across a narrow arm of the sea is Isle Royal or
Cape Breton, where the French are intrenched as at a second Gibraltar
in the fortress of Louisburg.  Since the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle
restored the fort to the French, millions have been spent strengthening
its walls, adding to the armaments; but Intendant Bigot has had charge
of the funds, and Intendant Bigot has a sponge-like quality of
absorbing all funds that flow through his hands.  Cannon have been
added, but there are not enough balls to go round.  The walls have been
repaired, but with false filling (sand in place of mortar), so that the
first shatter of artillery will send them clattering down in wet

Take the Ohio next.

"Beautiful River" is the highway between New France and Louisiana.  By
Braddock's defeat the English have been driven out to a man.  Matters
are a thousandfold worse than before, for {242} the savage allies of
the French now swarm down the bush road cut by Braddock's army and
carry bloody havoc to all the frontier settlements of Pennsylvania and
Virginia.  How many pioneers perished in this border war will never be
known.  It is a tale by itself, and its story is not part of Canada's
history.  George Washington was the officer in charge of a thousand
bushfighters to guard this frontier.

Take the valley of Lake Champlain.

This is the highway of approach to Montreal north, to Albany south.
Johnson had defeated Dieskau here, but neither side was strong enough
to advance from the scene of battle into the territory of the enemy.
The English take possession of Lake George and intrench themselves at
the south end in Fort William Henry.  Sir William Johnson strings a
line of forts up the Mohawk River towards Oswego on Lake Ontario, and
he keeps his forest rangers, under the famous scout Major Robert
Rogers, scouring the forest and mountain trails of Lake Champlain for
French marauder and news of what the French are doing.  Rogers'
Rangers, too, are a story by themselves, but a story which does not
concern Canada.  Skating and snowshoeing by winter, canoeing by night
in summer, Rogers passed and repassed the enemy's lines times without
number, as if his life were charmed, though once his wrist was shot
when he had nothing to stanch the blood but the ribbon tying his wig,
and once he stumbled back exhausted to Fort William Henry, to lie
raging with smallpox for the winter.  Among the forest rangers of New
Hampshire and New York, Major Robert Rogers was without a peer.  No
danger was too great, no feat too daring, for his band of scouts.  The
English have established Fort William Henry at the south end of Lake
George.  The French checkmate the move by strengthening Crown Point on
Lake Champlain and moving a pace farther south into English
territory,--to Carillon, where the waters of Lake George pour into
Champlain.  Here on a high angle between the river and the lake,
commanding all travel north and south, the French build Carillon or
Fort Ticonderoga.

{243} As for the Great Northwest, New France with her string of
posts--Frontenac, Niagara, Detroit, Michilimackinac, Kaministiquia
(Fort William), Fort Rogue (Winnipeg), Portage la Prairie--stretches
clear across to the foothills of the Rockies.  The English fur traders
of Hudson Bay have, in 1754, sent Anthony Hendry up the Saskatchewan,
but when Hendry comes back with word of equestrian Indians--the
Blackfeet on horseback--and treeless plains, the English set him down
as a lying impostor.  Indians on horseback!  They had never seen
Indians but in canoes and on snowshoes!  Hendry was dismissed as
unreliable, and no Englishman went up the Saskatchewan for another ten

If the disasters of 1755 did nothing more, they at last stirred the
home governments to action.  Earl Loudon is sent out in 1756 to command
the English, and to New France in May comes Louis Joseph, Marquis de
Montcalm, age forty-four, soldier, scholar, country gentleman, with a
staff composed of Chevalier de Lévis, Bourlamaque, and one
Bougainville, to become famous as a navigator.

Though New France consists of a good three quarters of America, things
are in evil plight that causes Montcalm many sleepless nights.
Vaudreuil, the French governor, descendant of that Vaudreuil who long
ago set the curse of Indian warfare on the borders of New England, had
expected to be appointed chief commander of the troops and jealously
resents Montcalm's coming.  With the Governor is leagued Intendant
Bigot, come up from Louisburg.  Bigot is a man of sixty, of noble
birth, a favorite of the butterfly woman who rules the King of
France,--the Pompadour,--and he has come to New France to mend his
fortunes.  How he planned to do it one may guess from his career at
Louisburg; but Quebec offered better field, and it was to Bigot's
interest to ply Montcalm and Vaudreuil with such tittle-tattle of
enmity as would foment jealousy, keep their attention on each other,
and their eyes off his own doings.  As he had done at Louisburg, so he
now did at Quebec.  The King was requisitioned for enormous sums to
strengthen the fort.  Bigot's {244} ring of friends acted as
contractors.  The outlay was enormous, the results trifling.  "I
think," complained the King, "that Quebec must be fortified in gold, it
has cost so much."  It was time of war.  Enormous sums were to be
expended for presents to keep the Indians loyal; and the King complains
that he cannot understand how baubles of beads and powderhorns cost so
much, or how the western tribes seem to become more and more numerous,
or how the French officers, who distribute the presents, become
millionaires in a few years.  A friend of Bigot's handled these funds.
There are meat contracts for the army.  A worthless, lowbred scamp is
named commissary general.  He handles these contracts, and he, too,
swiftly graduates into the millionaire class, is hail-fellow well met
with Bigot, drinks deep at the Intendant's table, and gambles away as
much as $40,000 in a single night.  It is time of war, and it is time
of famine too; for the crops have failed.  Every inhabitant between the
ages of fifteen and fifty has been drafted into the army.  Not counting
Indians, there is an army of fifteen to twenty thousand to be fed; so
Bigot compels the habitants to sell him provisions at a low price.
These provisions he resells to the King for the army and to the
citizens at famine prices.  The King's warehouse down by the
Intendant's palace becomes known as La Friponne,--The Cheat.

And though the country is on verge of ruin, though poor people of the
three towns are rioting in the streets for food, old women cursing the
little wizened Intendant with his pimpled face as he rolls past
resplendent in carriage with horses whose harness is a blaze of silver,
the troops threatening to mutiny because they are compelled to use
horse flesh,--though New France is hovering over a volcano of disaster,
they dance to their death, thoughtless as butterflies, gay as children,
these manikin imitators of the French court, who are ruining New France
that they may copy the vices of an Old World playing at kingcraft.  The
regular troops are uniformed in white with facings of blue and red and
gold and violet, three-cornered hat, and leather leggings to knee.
What with chapel bells ringing and ringing, and bugle {245} call and
counter call echoing back from Cape Diamond; what with Monsieur Bigot's
prancing horses and Madame Péan's flashy carriage,--Madame Péan of whom
Bigot is so enamored he has sent her husband to some far western post
and passes each evening at her gay receptions,--what with the grounding
of the sentry's arms and the parade of troops, Quebec is a gay place
these years of black ruin, and the gossips have all they can do to keep
track of the amours and the duels and the high personages cultivating
Madame Péan; for cultivated she must be by all who covet place or
power.  A word from Madame Péan to Bigot is of more value than a bribe.
Even Montcalm and De Lévis attend her revels.


Twenty people sup with Monsieur Bigot each night, either at the
Intendant's palace down by Charles River, or nine miles out towards
Beauport, where he has built himself the Forest Hermitage, now known as
Château Bigot,--a magnificent country manor house of red brick, hidden
away among the hills with the gay shrubberies of French gardens set
down in an American wilderness.  Supper over by seven, the guests sit
down to play, and the amount a man may gamble is his social barometer,
whether {246} he lose or win, cheat or steal.  If dancing follows
gambling, the rout will not disperse till seven in the morning.  What
time is left of the twenty-four hours in a day will be devoted to
public affairs.

Montcalm's salary is only 25,000 francs, or $5,000.  To maintain the
dignity of the King, the commander in chief must keep the pace, and he
too gives weekly suppers, with places set for forty people, "whom I
don't know," he writes dejectedly to his wife, "and don't want to know;
and wish that I might spend the evenings quietly in my own chamber."
To Montcalm, who was of noble birth with no shamming, this lowbred
pretense and play at courtcraft became a bore; to his staff of
officers, a source of continual amusement; but De Lévis presently falls
victim to a pair of fine eyes possessed by the wife of another man.

War filled the summers, but the winters were given up to social life;
and of all midwinter social gayeties the most important was the
official visit of the Governor and the Intendant to Montreal.  By this
time a good road had been cut from Quebec to Montreal along the north
shore, and the sleighs usually set out in January or February.  Bigot
added to the occasion all the prestige of a social rout.  All the grand
dames and cavaliers of Quebec were invited.  Baggage was sent on ahead
with servants to break the way, find quarters for the night, and
prepare meals.  After a dinner at the Intendant's palace the sleighs
set out, two horses to each, driven tandem because the sleigh road was
too narrow for a team.  Each sleigh held only two occupants, and to the
damage done by fair eyes was added the glow of exhilaration from
driving behind spirited horses in frosty air with the bells of a
hundred carryalls ringing across the snow.  At seven was pause for
supper.  High play followed till ten.  Then early to bed and early to
rise and on the road again by seven in the morning!  In Montreal was
one continual round of dinners and dances.  Between times, appointments
were made to the military posts and trading stations of the Up-Country.
He who wanted a good post must pay his court to Madame Péan.  No wonder
Montcalm breathed a sigh of relief when Lent put a stop to the gayeties
and he could quietly pass his evenings with the Sulpician priests.
{247} To break from Bigot's ring during the war was impossible.
Creatures of his choosing filled the army, handled the supplies,
controlled the Indians; and when the King's reproof became too sharp,
Bigot simply threatened to resign, which wrought consternation, for no
man of ability would attempt to unwind the tangle of Bigot's dishonesty
during a critical war.  Montcalm wrote home complaints in cipher.  The
French government bided its time, and Bigot tightened his vampire
suckers on the lifeblood of the dying nation.  The whole era is a theme
for the allegory of artist or poet.



Montcalm had arrived in May of 1756.  By midsummer he was leading three
thousand French artillerymen across Lake Ontario from Fort Frontenac
(Kingston), to attack the English post on the south side, Oswego.
Inside the fort walls were seven hundred raw English provincials, ill
of scurvy from lack of food.  The result need scarcely be told.  Seven
hundred ill men behind wooden walls had no chance against three
thousand soldiers in health with heavy artillery.  To take the English
by surprise, Montcalm had crossed the lake on August 4 by night.  Two
days later all the transport ships had landed the troops and the cannon
had actually been mounted before the English knew of the enemy's
presence.  On the east side of the river was Fort Ontario, a barricade
of logs built in the shape of a star, housing an outguard of three
hundred and seventy men.  On discovering the French, the sentry spiked
their cannon, threw their powder in the river, and retired at midnight
inside Oswego's walls.  Working like beavers, Montcalm's men dragged
twenty cannon to a hill commanding the fort, known as "Fort Rascal"
because the outfort there was useless to the English.  Before
Montcalm's cannonade Oswego's walls, plastered with clay and rubble,
fell like the staves of a dry barrel.  The English sharpshooters then
hid behind pork barrels placed in three tiers filled with sand; but
Colonel Mercer, their officer, was literally cut in two by a cannon
shot, and the women, cooped up inside the barracks, begged the officers
to avoid Indian massacre by surrender.  {248} A white flag was waved.
Including women, something under a thousand English surrendered
themselves prisoners to Montcalm.  The Indians fell at once to mad
plunder.  Spite of the terms of honorable surrender, the English were
stripped of everything, and only Montcalm's promise of $10,000 worth of
presents to the savages prevented butchery.  The victors decamped to
Montreal, well pleased with the campaign of 1756.  It need not be told
that there were constant raids and counter raids along the frontier
during the entire year.

Loudon, the English commander, did not arrive in New York till well on
in midsummer of 1756, and he found far different material from the
trained bushfighters in the hands of Montcalm.  The English soldiers
were raw provincial recruits, dressed, at best, in buckskin, but for
the most part in the rough homespun which they had worn when they had
left plow and carpenter's bench and fishing boat.  While Montcalm was
capturing Oswego, Loudon was licking his rough recruits into shape,
"making men out of mud" for the campaign of 1757.  Indeed, it was said
of Loudon, and the saying stuck to him as characteristic of his
campaign, that he resembled the wooden horse figure of a tavern
sign,--always on horseback but never rode forward.  Instead of striking
at Lake Champlain or on the Ohio, where the French were aggressors,
Loudon planned to repeat the brilliant capture of Louisburg.  July of
1857 found him at Halifax planting vegetable gardens to prevent
scurvy,--"the cabbage campaign" it was derisively called,--and waiting
for Gorham's rangers to reconnoiter Louisburg.  Gorham's scouts brought
back word that the French admiral had come in with twenty-four
men-of-war and seven thousand men.  To overpower such strength meant a
prolonged siege.  It was already August.  Loudon sailed back to New
York without firing a gun, while the English fleet, trying to
reconnoiter Louisburg, suffered terrible shipwreck.

[Illustration: THE EARL OF LOUDON]

Montcalm was not the enemy to let the chance of Loudon's absence from
the scene of action pass unimproved.  While Loudon is pottering at
Halifax, Montcalm marshals his troops to the {249} number of eight
thousand, including one thousand Indians at Carillon or Ticonderoga,
where Lake George empties into Lake Champlain.  Portaging two hundred
and fifty flatboats with as many birch canoes up the river, the French
invade the mountain wilderness of Lake George.  Towards the end of
July, Lévis leads part of the troops by land up the west shore towards
the English post of Fort William Henry.  Montcalm advances on the lake
with the flatboats and canoes, and the rafts with the heavy artillery.
Each night Lévis' troops kindle their signal fires on the mountain
slope, and each night Montcalm from the lake signals back with torches.
It needs artist's brush to paint the picture: the forested mountains
green and lonely and silent in the shimmering sunlight of the summer
sky; the lake gold as molten metal in the fire of the setting sun; the
soldiers in their gay uniforms of white and blue, hoisting tent cloths
on oar sweeps for sails as a breeze dimples the waters; the French
voyageurs clad in beaded buckskin chanting some ditty of Old-World fame
to the rhythmic dip of the Indian paddles; the Indians naked, painted
for war, with a glitter in their eyes of a sinister intent which they
have no mind to tell Montcalm; and then, at the south of Lake George,
nestling between the hills and the water, the little palisaded
fort,--Fort William Henry,--with gates fast shut and two thousand
bushfighters behind the walls, weak from an epidemic of smallpox, and,
as usual, so short of provisions that siege means starvation.

{250} Twenty miles southeastward is another English fort,--Fort
Edward,--where General Webb with sixteen hundred men is keeping the
road barred against advance to Albany.  Soon as scouts bring word to
Fort William Henry of the advancing French, Lieutenant Monro sends
frantic appeal to Webb for more men; but Webb has already sent all the
men he can spare.  If he leaves Fort Edward, the French by a flank
movement through the woods can march on Albany, so Monro unplugs his
seventeen cannon, locks his gates, and bides his fate.

Montcalm follows the same tactics as at Oswego,--brings heavy artillery
against slab walls.  For the first week of August, eight hundred of his
men are digging trenches by night to avoid giving target for the fiery
bombs whizzing through the dark from Monro's cannon.  By day they lie
hidden in the woods with a cordon of sharpshooters encircling the fort,
Montcalm encamped on the west to prevent help from Sir William Johnson
up the Mohawk, Lévis on the southeast to cut off aid from Webb.  Monro
sends yet one last appeal for help: two thousand men against eight
thousand,--the odds are eloquent of his need!  Montcalm's scouts let
the messenger pass through the lines as if unseen, but they make a
point of catching the return messenger and holding Webb's answer that
he cannot come, till their cannon have torn great wounds in the fort
walls.  Then Bougainville blindfold carries Webb's answer to Monro and
demands the surrender of the fort.  Monro still has a little
ammunition, still hopes against hope that Johnson or Webb or Loudon
will come to the rescue, and he keeps his big guns singing over the
heads of the French in their trenches till all the cannon have burst
but seven, and there are not ten rounds of shells left.  Then Colonel
Young, with a foot shot off, rides out on horseback waving a white
flag.  Three hundred English have been killed, as many again are
wounded or ill of smallpox, and to the remaining garrison of sixteen
hundred Montcalm promises safe conduct to General Webb at Fort Edward.
Then the English march out.  That night--August 9--the vanquished
English camp with Montcalm's forces.  The Indians, meanwhile, ramping
through the fort for plunder, {251} have maddened themselves with
traders' rum!  Before daybreak they have butchered all the wounded
lying in the hospital and cut to pieces the men ill of smallpox,--a
crime that brought its own punishment in contagion.  Next morning, when
the French guard tried to conduct the disarmed English along the trail
to Fort Edward, the Indians snatched at the clothing, the haversacks,
the tent kit of the marchers.  With their swords the French beat back
the drunken horde.  In answer, the war hatchets were waved over the
heads of the cowering women.  The march became a panic; the panic, a
massacre; and for twenty-four hours such bedlam raged as might have put
fiends to shame.  The frenzied Indians would listen to no argument but
blows; and when the English prisoners appealed to the French for
protection, the French dared not offend their savage allies by fighting
to protect the English victims.  "Take to the woods," they warned the
men, and the women were quickly huddled back to shelter of the fort.
Of the men, sixty were butchered on the spot and some seven hundred
captured to be held for ransom.  The remnant of the English soldiers,
along with the women, were held till the Indian frenzy had spent
itself, then sent to Fort Edward.  August 16 a torch was put to the
combustibles of the fort ruins, and as the French boats glided out on
Lake George for the St. Lawrence, explosion after explosion, flame
leaping above flame, proclaimed that of Fort William Henry there would
remain naught but ashes and charred ruins and the skeletons of the
dead.  So closed the campaign of 1857 [Transcriber's note: 1757?].  For
three years hand running England had suffered defeat.

The spring of 1758 witnessed a change.  The change was the rise to
power of a man who mastered circumstances instead of allowing them to
master him.  Such men are the milestones of human progress, whether
heroes, or quiet toilers unknown to the world.  The man was Pitt, the
English statesman.  Instead of a weak ministry fighting the
machinations of France, it was now Pitt versus Pompadour, the English
patriot against the light woman who ruled the councils of France.

{252} From fighting weakly on the defensive, England sprang into the
position of aggressor all along the line.  The French were to be
attacked at all points simultaneously, at Louisburg on the east, at
Ticonderoga or Carillon on Lake Champlain, at Duquesne on the Ohio, at
Frontenac on Lake Ontario, and finally at Quebec itself.  London is
recalled as commander in chief.  Abercrombie succeeds to the position,
with the brilliant young soldier, Lord Howe, as right-hand man; but
Pitt takes good care that there shall be good chiefs and good
right-hand men at _all_ points.  The one mistake is Abercrombie,--"Mrs.
Nabby Crombie" the soldiers called him.  He was an indifferent,
negative sort of man; and indifferent, negative sorts of people, by
their dishwater goodness, can sometimes do more harm in critical
positions than the branded criminal.  Red tape had forced him on Pitt,
but Pitt trusted to the excellence of the subordinate officers,
especially Lord Howe.

Louisburg first!

No more dillydallying and delay "to plant cabbages!"  The thing is to
reach Louisburg before the French have entered the harbor.  Men-of-war
are stationed to intercept the French vessels coming from the
Mediterranean, and before winter has passed Admiral Boscawen has sailed
for America with one hundred and fifty vessels, including forty
men-of-war, frigates, and transports carrying twelve thousand men.
General Amherst is to command the land forces, and with Amherst is
Brigadier James Wolfe, age thirty-one, a tall, slim, fragile man, whose
delicate frame is tenanted by a lion spirit; or, to change the
comparison, by a motive power too strong for the weak body that held
it.  By May the fleet is in Halifax.  By June Amherst has joined
Boscawen, and the ships beat out for Louisburg through heavy fog, with
a sea that boils over the reefs in angry surf.

Louisburg was in worse condition than during the siege of 1745.  The
broken walls have been repaired, but the filling is false,--sand grit.
Its population is some four thousand, of whom three thousand eight
hundred are the garrison.  On the ships lying in the harbor are three
thousand marines, a defensive force, in all, {253} of six thousand
eight hundred.  On walls and in bastions are some four hundred and
fifty heavy guns, cannon, and mortars.  Imagine a triangle with the
base to the west, the two sides running out to sea on the east.  The
fort is at the apex.  The wall of the base line is protected by a
marsh.  On the northeast side is the harbor protected by reefs and
three batteries.  Along the south side, Drucourt, the French commander,
has stationed two thousand men at three different points where landing
is possible, to construct batteries behind barricades of logs.

[Illustration: BOSCAWEN]

Fog had concealed the approach of the English, but such a ground swell
was raging over the reefs as threatened any ship with instant
destruction.  For a week Amherst and Wolfe and Lawrence row up and down
through the roiling mist and raging surf and singing winds to take
stock of the situation.  With those batteries at the landing places
there is only one thing to do,--cannonade them, hold their attention in
a life-and-death fight while the English soldiers scramble through the
surf for the shore.  From sunrise to sundown of the 8th furious
cannonading set the green seas churning and tore up the French
barricades as by hurricane.  At sunset the firing ceased, and three
detachments of troops launched out in whaleboats at three in the
morning, two of the detachments to make a feint of landing, while Wolfe
with the other division was to run through the surf for the shore at
Freshwater Cove.  The French were not deceived.  They let Wolfe
approach within range, when the log barricade flashed to flame with a
thousand sharpshooters.  Wolfe had foreseen the snare and had waved his
{254} troops off when he noticed that two boat loads were rowing ashore
through a tremendous surf under shelter of a rocky point.  Quickly he
signaled the other boats to follow.  In a trice the boats had smashed
to kindling on the reefs, but the men were wading ashore, muskets held
high over head, powder pouches in teeth, and rushed with bayonets
leveled against the French, who had dashed from cover to prevent the
landing.  This unexpected landing had cut the French off from
Louisburg.  Retreating in panic, they abandoned their batteries and
fifty dead.  The English had lost one hundred and nine in the surf.  It
is said that Wolfe scrambled from the water like a drowned rat and led
the rush with no other weapon in hand but his cane.

[Illustration: THE SIEGE OF LOUISBURG  (From a contemporary print)]

To land the guns through the jostling sea was the next task.  It was
done, as in 1745, by a pontoon bridge of small boats, but the work took
till the 29th of June.  Wolfe, meanwhile, has marched with twelve
hundred men round to the rear of the marsh and comes so suddenly on the
Grand and Lighthouse Batteries, which defend the harbor, that the
French abandon them to retreat within the walls.  This gives the
English such control of the harbor entrance that Drucourt, the French
commander, sinks six of his ships across the channel to bar out
Boscawen's fleet, the masts of the sunken, vessels sticking above the
water.  Amherst's men are working like demons, building a road for the
cannon across the marsh and trenching up to the back wall; but they
work only at night and are undiscovered by the French till the 9th of
July.  Then the French rush out with a whoop to drive them off, but the
English already have their guns mounted, and Drucourt's men are glad to
dash for shelter behind the cracking walls.  It now became a game of
cannon play pure and simple.  Boscawen from harbor front hurls his
whistling bombs overhead, to crash through roofs inside the walls.
Wolfe from the Lighthouse Battery throws shells and flaming
combustibles straight into the midst of the remaining French fleet.  At
last, on July 21st, masts, sails, tar ropes, take fire in a terrible
conflagration, and three of the fleet burn to the water line with
terrific explosions of their powder magazines; then the flames hiss out
above {255} the rocking hulls.  Only two ships are left to the French,
and the deep bomb-proof casemates inside the fort between outer and
inner walls, where the families and the wounded have been sheltered,
are now in flame.  Amherst loads his shells with combustibles and pours
one continuous rain of fiery death on the doomed fort.  The houses,
which are of logs, flame like kindling wood, and now the timber work of
the stone bastions is burning from bombs hurtling through the roofs.
The walls crash down in masses.  The scared surgeons, all bloody from
amputating shattered limbs, no longer stand in safety above their
operating tables.  It is said that Madame Drucourt, the Governor's
wife, actually stayed on the walls to encourage the soldiers, with her
own hands fired some of the great guns, and, when the overworked
surgeons flagged from terror and lack of sleep, it was Madame Drucourt
who attended to the wounded.  Drucourt is for holding out to the death,
until one dark night the English row into the harbor and capture his
two last ships.  Then Drucourt asks for terms, July 26; but the terms
are stern,--utter surrender,--and Drucourt would have fought till every
man fell from the walls, had not one of the civil officers rushed after
the commander's messenger carrying {256} the refusal, and shouted
across the ditches to the English: "We accept!  We surrender!  We
accept your terms!"

Counting soldiers, marines, and townspeople, in all five thousand
French pass over to Amherst, to be carried prisoners on Boscawen's
fleet to England.  Wolfe was for proceeding at once to Quebec, but
Amherst considered the season too late and determined to complete the
work where he was.  One detachment goes to receive the surrender of
Isle St. John, henceforth known as Prince Edward Island.  Another
division proceeds up St. John River, New Brunswick, burning all
settlements that refuse unconditional surrender.  Wolfe's grenadiers
are sent to reduce Gaspé and Miramichi and northern New Brunswick.  And
now, lest blundering statecraft for a second time return the captured
fort to France, Amherst and Boscawen order the complete disarmament and
destruction of Louisburg.  What cannon cannot be removed are tumbled
into the marsh or upset into the sea.  The stones from the walls are
carried away to Halifax.  By 1760, of Louisburg, the glory of New
France, the pride of America, there remains not a vestige but grassed
slopes overgrown by nettles, ditches with rank growth of weeds, stone
piles where the wild vines grow, and an inner yard where the cows of
the fisher folk pasture.

Not a poor beginning for the campaign of 1758, though bad enough news
has come from Major General Abercrombie, which was the real explanation
of Amherst's refusal to push on to Quebec.

Abercrombie, with fifteen thousand men, the pick of the regulars and
provincials, had launched out on Lake George on the 5th of July with
over one thousand boats, to descend the lake northward to the French
fort of Carillon or Ticonderoga.  Again, it would require artist's
brush to paint the scene.  Rogers' Rangers, dressed in buckskin, led
the way in birch canoes.  Lord Howe was there, dressed like a
bushfighter; and with bagpipes setting the echoes ringing amid the
lonely mountains, were the Highland regiments in their tartan plaids.
Flags floated from the prow of every boat.  Each battalion had its own
regimental {257} band.  Scarcely a breath dimpled the waters of the
lake, and the sun shone without a cloud.  Little wonder those who
passed through the fiery Aceldama that was to come, afterwards looked
back on this scene as the fairest in their lives.

[Illustration: AMHERST]

Montcalm had only arrived at Ticonderoga on June 30th.  There was no
doubting the news.  His bushrovers brought in word that the English
were advancing in such multitudes their boats literally covered the
lake.  It looked as if the fate of Fort William Henry were to be
reversed.  Montcalm never dreamed of Abercrombie attacking without
artillery.  To stay cooped up in the fort would invite destruction.
Therefore Montcalm ordered his men out to construct a circular
breastwork from the River of the Chutes on the southeast, which empties
Lake George, round towards Lake Champlain on the northwest.  Huge trees
were felled, pile on pile, top-most branches spiked and pointed
outwards.  Behind these Montcalm intrenched his four thousand men,
lying in lines three deep, with grenadiers in reserve behind to step up
as the foremost lines fell.  At a cannon signal from the fort the men
were to rise to their places, but not to fire till the English were
entangled in the brushwood.  It was blisteringly hot weather.  It is
said that the troops took off their heavy three-cornered hats and lay
in their shirt sleeves, hand on musket, speaking no word, but waiting.

{258} On came the English in martial array, pausing in the Narrows at
five o'clock for the troops' evening meal, moving on before daylight of
July 6 to the landing place.  The Rangers had brought in word that
Lévis was coming posthaste to Montcalm's aid.  Abercrombie thought to
defeat Montcalm before reënforcements could come; and now he committed
his cardinal error.  He advanced across the portage without his heavy
artillery.  Halfway over, the voice of the French scouts rang out, "Who
goes there?"  "French," answer the English soldiers; but the French
were not tricked.  The ambushed scouts fired.  Lord Howe, the very
spirit of the English army, dropped dead, shot through the breast,
though the English avenged his loss by cutting the French scouts to
pieces.  On the night of the 7th the English army bivouacked in sight
of the French barricade.  Promptly at twelve o'clock next day a cannon
shot from Ticonderoga brought every Frenchman behind the tree line to
his place at a leap.  Abercrombie had ordered his men to rush the
barricade.  There was fearful silence till the English were within
twenty paces of the trees.  There they broke from quick march to a run
with a wild halloo!  Death unerring blazed from the French
barricade,--not bullets only, but broken glass and ragged metal that
tore hideous wounds in the ranks of the English.  Caught in the
brushwood, unable even to see their foes, the maddened troops wavered
and fell back.  Again Abercrombie roared the order to charge.  Six
times they hurled themselves against the impassable wall, and six times
the sharpshooters behind the lines met the advance with a rain of fire.
The Highland troops to the right went almost mad.  Lord John Murray,
their commander, had fallen, and not a tenth of their number remained
unwounded; but the broadswords wrought small havoc against the spiked
branches of the log barricade.  Obstinate as he was stupid, Abercrombie
kept his men at the bloody but futile attempt till the sun had set
behind the mountains, etching the sad scene with the long painted
shadows.  Already almost two thousand English had fallen,--seven
hundred killed, the rest wounded.  The French behind the barricade,
where Montcalm marched up and down in his shirt {259} sleeves, grimed
with smoke, encouraging the men, had lost less than four hundred.  In a
spirit of hilarious bravado a young Frenchman sprang to the top of the
barricade and waved a coat on the end of his bayonet.  Mistaking it for
a flag of surrender, the English ceased firing and dashed up with
muskets held on the horizontal above heads.  They were actually scaling
the wall when a French officer, realizing the blunder, roared: "Shoot!
shoot! you fools!  Don't you see those men will seize you?"


Cleaning guns and eating snatches of food, Montcalm's men slept that
night in their places behind the logs.  Montcalm had passed from man to
man, personally thanking the troops for their valor.  When daylight
came over the hills with wisps of fog like cloud banners from the
mountain tops, and the sunlight pouring gold mist through the valley,
the French rose and rubbed their eyes.  They could scarcely believe it!
Surely Abercrombie would come back with his heavy guns.  Like the mists
of the morning the English had vanished.  Far down the lake they were
retreating in such panic terror they had left their baggage.  Places
were found on the portage by French scouts where the English had fled
in such haste, marchers had lost their boots in the mud and not stopped
to {260} find them.  Such was the battle of Carillon, or
Ticonderoga,--good reason for Amherst refusing to go on to Quebec.

The year closed with two more victories for the English.  Brigadier
John Forbes and Washington succeeded in cutting their way up to Fort
Duquesne by a new road.  They found the fort abandoned, and, taking
possession in November, renamed it Pittsburg after the great English
statesman.  The other victory was at Frontenac, or Kingston.  As the
French had concentrated at Lake Champlain, leaving Frontenac unguarded,
Bradstreet gained permission from Abercrombie to lead three thousand
men across Lake Ontario against La Salle's old fur post.  Crossing from
the ruins of old Oswego, Bradstreet encamped beneath the palisades of
Frontenac on the evening of August 25.  By morning he had his cannon in
range for the walls.  Inside the fort Commandant de Noyan had less than
one hundred men.  At seven in the evening of August 27 he surrendered.
Bradstreet permitted the prisoners to go down to Montreal on parole, to
be exchanged for English prisoners held in Quebec.  Furs to the value
of $800,000, twenty cannon, and nine vessels were captured.  Bradstreet
divided the loot among his men, taking for himself not so much as a
penny's worth.  The fort was destroyed.  So were the vessels.  The guns
and provisions were carried across the lake and deposited at Fort
Stanwix, east of old Oswego.  The loss of Duquesne on the Ohio and Fort
Frontenac on Lake Ontario cut French dominion in America in two.
Henceforth there was no highway from New France to Louisiana.  In
September, Abercrombie was recalled.  Amherst became chief commander.

Wolfe had gone home to England ill.  It was while sojourning at the
fashion resort, Bath, that he fell desperately in love with a Miss
Lowther, to whom he became engaged.  Then came the summons from Pitt to
meet the cabinet ministers in the war office of London.  Wolfe was
asked to take command of the campaign in 1759 against Quebec.  It had
been his ambition in Louisburg to proceed at once against Quebec.  Here
was his opportunity.  {261} It need not be told, he took it.  Amherst
now, on the field south of Lake Champlain, received 10 pounds a day as
commander in chief.  For the greater task of reducing Quebec, Wolfe was
to receive 2 pounds a day.  Under him were to serve Monckton,
Townshend, and Murray.  Admiral Saunders was to command the fleet.
Wolfe advised sending a few ships beforehand to guard the entrance to
the St. Lawrence, and Durell was dispatched for this purpose long
before the main armaments set out.  By April 30 the combined fleet and
army were at Halifax, Wolfe with a force of some 8500 men.  Wolfe, now
only in his thirty-third year, had been the subject of such jealousy
that he was actually compelled to sail from Louisburg in June without
one penny of ready money in his army chest.  Underling officers, whose
duty it was to advance him money on credit, had raised difficulties.


Cheers and cheers yet again rent the air as the fleet at last set out
for the St. Lawrence, the soldiers on deck shouting themselves hoarse
as Louisburg faded over the watery horizon, the officers at table the
first night out at sea drinking toast after toast to _British colors on
every French fort in America_.

At Quebec was fast and furious preparation for the coming siege.
Bougainville had been sent to France from Lake Champlain in 1758 with
report of the victory at Ticonderoga.  In vain {262} he appealed for
more money, more men for the coming conflict!  The French government
sent him back to Quebec with a bundle of advice and platitudes and
titles and badges and promotions and soft words, but of the sinew which
makes war, men and money, France had naught to spare.  The rumor of the
English invasion was confirmed by Bougainville.  Every man capable of
bearing arms was called to Quebec except the small forces at the
outposts, and Bourlamaque at Champlain was instructed if attacked by
Amherst to blow up Fort Carillon, then Crown Point, and retire.  Grain
was gathered into the state warehouses, and so stripped of able-bodied
men were the rural districts that the crops of 1759 were planted by the
women and children.  Fire ships and rafts were constructed, the channel
of St. Charles River closed by sinking vessels, and a bridge built
higher up to lead from Quebec City across the river eastward to
Beauport and Montmorency.  Along the high cliffs of the St. Lawrence
from Montmorency Falls to Quebec were constructed earthworks and
intrenchments to command the approach up the river.  What frigates had
come in with Bougainville were sent higher up the St. Lawrence to be
out of danger; but the crews, numbering 1400, were posted on the
ramparts of Upper Town.  Counting mere boys, Quebec had a defensive
force variously given as from 9000 to 14,000; but deducting raw levies,
who scarcely know the rules of the drill room, it is doubtful if
Montcalm could boast of more than 5000 able-bodied fighters.  Still he
felt secure in the impregnable strength of Quebec's natural position.
July 29, when the enemy lay encamped beneath his trenches, he could
write, "Unless they [the English] have wings, they cannot cross a river
and effect a landing and scale a precipice."  One cruel feature there
was of Quebec's preparations.  To keep the habitants on both sides the
river loyal, Vaudreuil, the governor, issued a proclamation telling the
people that the English intended to massacre the inhabitants, men,
women, and children.  Meanwhile, morning, noon, and night, the chapel
bells are ringing . . . ringing . . . lilting . . . and calling the
faithful to prayers for the destruction of the heretic invader!  Nuns
lie prostrate day and night in prayer for the {263} country's
deliverance from the English.  Holy processions march through the
streets, nuns and priests and little children in white, and rough
soldiery in the uniforms with the blue facings, to pray Heaven's aid
for victory.  And while the poor people starve for bread, poultry is
daily fattened on precious wheat that it may make tenderest meat for
Intendant Bigot's table, where the painted women and drunken gamblers
and gay officers nightly feast!

[Illustration: BOUGAINVILLE]

Signal fires light up the hills with ominous warning as the English
fleet glides slowly abreast the current of the St. Lawrence, now
pausing to sound where the yellow riffle of the current shows shallows,
now following the course staked out by flags, here depending on the
Frenchman, whom they have compelled to act as pilot!  Nightly from hill
to hill the signal fires leap to the sky, till one flames from Cape
Tourmente, and Quebec learns that the English are surely very near.
Among the Englishmen who are out in the advance boats sounding is a
young man, James Cook, destined to become a great navigator.

June 25, sail after sail, frigate after frigate bristling with cannon,
literally swarming with soldiers and marines, glide round the end of
Orleans Island through driving rain and a squall, and to clatter of
anchor chains and rattle of falling sails, come to rest.  "Pray Heaven
they be wrecked as Sir Hovenden Walker's fleet was wrecked long ago,"
sigh the nuns of Quebec.  If they had {264} prayed half as hard that
their corrupt rulers, their Bigots and their kings and their painted
women whose nod could set Europe on fire with war,--if the holy
sisterhood had prayed for this gang of vampires whose vices had brought
doom to the land, to be swallowed in some abyss, their prayers might
have been more effective with Heaven.

Next day a band of rangers lands from Wolfe's ships and finds the
Island of Orleans deserted.  On the church door the curé has pinned a
note, asking the English not to molest his church; and expressing
sardonic regret that the invaders have not come soon enough to enjoy
the fresh vegetables of his garden.

Wolfe for the first time gazes on the prize of his highest
ambition,--Quebec.  He is at Orleans, facing the city.  To his right is
the cataract of Montmorency.  From the falls past Beauport to St.
Charles River, the St. Lawrence banks are high cliffs.  Above the
cliffs are Montcalm's intrenched fighters.  Then the north shore of the
St. Lawrence suddenly sheers up beyond St. Charles River into a lofty,
steep precipice.  The precipice is Quebec City: Upper Town and the
convents and the ramparts and Castle St.  Louis nestling on an upper
ledge of the rock below Cape Diamond; Lower Town crowding between the
foot of the precipice and tide water.  Look again how the St. Lawrence
turns in a sharp angle at the precipice.  Three sides of the city are
water,--St. Charles River nearest Wolfe, then the St. Lawrence across
the steep face of the rock, then the St. Lawrence again along a still
steeper precipice to the far side.  Only the rear of the city is
vulnerable; but it is walled and inaccessible.

Quebec was a prize for any commander's ambition; but how to win it?

The night of June 28 is calm, warm, pitch-dark, the kind of summer
night when the velvet heat touches you as with a hand.  The English
soldiers of the crowded transports have gone ashore, when suddenly out
of the darkness glide fire ships as from an under world, with flaming
mast poles, and hulls in shadow, roaring with fire, throwing out
combustibles, drifting straight down on the tide towards the English
fleet.  But the French have managed {265} badly.  They have set the
ships on fire too soon.  The air is torn to tatters by terrific
explosions that light up the outlines of the city spires and churn the
river to billows.  Then the English sailors are out in small boats,
avoiding the suck of the undertow.  Throwing out grappling hooks, they
tow the flaming fire rafts away from their fleet.  It is the first play
of the game, and the French have lost.

SIEGE OF 1759]

Monckton goes ashore south on Point Lévis side next day.  Townshend has
landed his troops east of the Montmorency on the north shore.  It is
the second play of the game, and Wolfe has violated every rule of war,
for he has separated his forces in three divisions close to a powerful
enemy.  He is counting on Montcalm's policy, however, and Montcalm's
play is to lie inactive, sleeping in his boots, refusing to be lured to
battle till winter drives the English off.  It is usual in all accounts
of the great struggle to find that certain facts have been suppressed.
Let us frankly confess that when the English rangers went foraging they
brought back French scalps, and when the French Indians went scouting
they returned with English scalps.  However, manners were improving.
Strict orders are given: this is not a war on women; neither women nor
children are to be touched.  Wolfe posts proclamations on the parish
churches, calling on the habitants to stand neutral.  In answer, they
tear the proclamations down.  {266} By July 12 Wolfe's batteries on the
south side of the river are preparing to shell the city.  A band of
five hundred students and habitants rows across from Quebec by night to
dislodge the English gunners, but mistaking their own shots for the
shots of the enemy, fall on each other in the dark and retreat in wild
confusion.  Then the English cannon begin to do business.  In a single
day half the houses of Lower Town are battered to bits, and high-tossed
bombs have plunged through roofs of Upper Town, burning the cathedral
and setting a multitude of lesser buildings on fire.  In the confusion
of cannonade and counter-cannonade and a city on fire, shrouding the
ruins in a pall of smoke, some English ships slip up the river beyond
Quebec, but there the precipice of the river bank is still steeper, and
Bougainville is on guard with two thousand men.  For thirty miles
around the English rangers have laid the country waste.  Still Montcalm
refuses to come out and fight.

The enforced inaction exasperates Wolfe, whose health is failing him,
and who sees the season passing, no nearer the object of his ambition
than when he came.  As he had stormed the batteries of Louisburg, so
now he decides to storm the heights of Montmorency.  To any one who has
stood on the knob of rock above the gorge where the cataract plunges to
the St. Lawrence, or has scrambled down the bank slippery with spray,
and watched the black underpool whirl out to the river, Wolfe's venture
must seem madness; for French troops lined the intrenchments above the
cliff, and below a redoubt or battery had been built.  Below the
cataract, when the tide ebbed, was a place which might be forded.  From
sunrise to sunset all the last days of July, Wolfe's cannon boomed from
Lévis across the city, from the fleet in mid channel, from the land
camp on the east side of Montmorency.  Montcalm rightly guessed, this
presaged a night assault.  To hide his design, Wolfe kept his
transports shifting up and down the St. Lawrence, as if to land at
Beauport halfway to the city.  All the same, two armed transports, as
if by chance, managed to get themselves stranded just opposite the
redoubt below the cliff, where their cannon would protect a landing.
Montcalm saw the move and strengthened the troops behind the earthworks
on the {267} top of the cliff.  Toward sunset the tide ebbed, and at
that time cannon were firing from all points with such fury that the
St. Lawrence lay hidden in smoke.  As the air cleared, two thousand men
were seen wading and fording below the falls.  There was a rush of the
tall grenadiers for the redoubt.  The French retreated firing, and the
cliff above poured down an avalanche of shots.  At that moment Wolfe
suffered a cruel and unforeseen check.  A frightful thunderstorm burst
on the river, lashing earth and air to darkness.  It was impossible to
see five paces ahead or to aim a shot.  The cliff roared down with
miniature rivulets and the slippery clay bank gave to every step of the
climbers slithering down waist-deep in mud and weeds.  Powder was
soaked.  As the rain ceased, Indians were seen sliding down the cliff
to scalp the wounded.  Wolfe ordered a retreat.  The drums rolled the
recall and the English escaped pellmell, the French hooting with
derision at the top of the banks, the English yelling back strong oaths
for the enemy to come out of its rat hole and fight like men.  At the
ford the men, soaked like water rats, and a sorry rabble, got into some
sort of rank and burned the two stranded vessels as they passed back to
the east side.  In less than an hour four hundred and forty-three men
had fallen, the most of them killed, many both dead and wounded, into
the hands of the Indian scalpers.

One can guess Wolfe's fearful despair that night.  A month had passed.
He had accomplished worse than nothing.  In another month the fleet
must leave the St. Lawrence to avoid autumn storms.  Fragile at all
times, Wolfe fell ill, ill of fever and of chagrin, and those officers
over whose head he had been promoted did not spare their criticisms,
their malice.  It is so easy to win battles of life and war in theory.

As for Quebec, it was felt the siege was over, the contest won.  Still
bad news had come from the west.  Niagara had fallen before the
English, and the forts on Lake Champlain were abandoned to Amherst.
Nothing now barred the English advance down the Richelieu to Montreal.
Montcalm dispatches Lévis to Montreal with eight hundred men.

{268} Why did Amherst not come to Wolfe's aid?  His enemies say because
the commanding general was so sure the siege of Quebec would fail that
he did not want any share of the blame.  That may be unjust.  Amherst
was of the slow, cautious kind, who marched doggedly to victory.  He
may not have wished to risk a second Ticonderoga.  Wolfe's position was
now desperate.  His only alternatives were success or ruin.  "You can't
cure me," he told his surgeon, "but mend me up so I can go on for a few
days."  What he did in those few days left his name immortal.  Robert
Stobo, who had been captured from Washington's battalions on the Ohio,
and who knew every foot of Quebec from five years of captivity, had
escaped, joined Wolfe, and drawn plans of all surroundings.  From his
ship above Quebec Wolfe could see there was one path just behind the
city where men might ascend to the Plains of Abraham outside the rear
wall, but the path was guarded, and Bougainville's troops patrolled
westward as far as Cape Rouge.


It was now September.  From their trenches above the river the French
could see the English evacuating camp at Montmorency.  They were
jubilant.  Surely the English were giving up the siege.  Night after
night English transports loaded with soldiers ascended the St. Lawrence
above Quebec.  What did it mean?  Was it a feint to draw Montcalm's men
away from the east side?  {269} The French general was sleeplessly
anxious.  He had not passed a night in bed since the end of June.  The
fall rains were beginning, and another month of work in the trenches
meant half the army invalided.

The most of the English fleet was working up and down with the tide
between the western limits of Quebec and Cape Rouge, nine miles away.
Bougainville's force was increased to three thousand men, and he was
ordered to keep especial watch westward.  The steepness of the
precipice was guard enough near the town.  Wednesday, the 12th of
September, the English troops were ordered to hold themselves in
readiness.  They passed the day cleaning their arms, and were ordered
not to speak after nightfall or permit a sound to be heard from the
ranks.  Admiral Saunders with the main fleet was to feign attack on the
east side of the city.  Admiral Holmes with Wolfe's army, now numbering
not four thousand men, was to glide down with the tide from Cape Rouge
above Quebec.  Because the main fleet lay on the east side Montcalm
felt sure the attack would come from that quarter.  Deserters had
brought word to Wolfe that some flatboats with provisions were coming
down the river to Quebec that night.

Here, then, the position!  Saunders on the east side, opposite
Beauport, feigning attack; Montcalm watching him from the Beauport
cliffs; Wolfe nine miles up the river west of the city; Bougainville
watching him, watching too for those provisions, for Quebec was down to
empty larder.

It is said that as Wolfe rested in his ship, the _Sutherland_, off Cape
Rouge, he felt strange premonition of approaching death, and repeated
the words of Gray's "Elegy,"--"The paths of glory lead but to the
grave,"--but this has been denied.  Certainly he had such strange
consciousness of impending death that, taking a miniature of his
fiancée from his breast, he asked a fellow-officer to return it to her.
About midnight the tide began to ebb, and two lanterns were hung as a
sign from the masthead of the _Sutherland_.  Instantly all the ships
glided silent as the great river down with the tide.  The night was
moonless.  Near the little bridle path now known as Wolfe's Cove the
ships draw {270} ashore.  Sharp as iron on stone a sentry's voice rings
out, "Who goes?"

"The French," answers an officer, who speaks perfect French.

"What regiment?"

"The Queen's," replies the officer, who chances to know that
Bougainville has a regiment of that name.  Thinking they were the
provision transports, this sentry was satisfied.  Not so another.  He
ran down to the water's edge, and peering through the darkness called,
"Why can't you speak louder?"

"Hush you!  We 'll be overheard," answers the English officer in French.

Thus the English boats glided towards the little bridle path that led
up to the rear of the city.  Wolfe's Cove is not a path steep as a
stair up the face of a rock, as the most of the schoolbooks teach; it
is a little weed-grown, stony gully, easy to climb, but slant and
narrow, where I have walked many a night to drink from the spring near
the foot of the cliff.

Twenty-four volunteers lead the way up the stony path, silent and agile
as cats.  At the top are the tents of the sentries, who rush from their
couches to be overpowered by the English.  Before daybreak the whole
army has ascended to the plateau behind the city, known as the Plains
of Abraham.  No use entering here into the dispute whether Wolfe took
his place where the goal now stands, or farther back from the city
wall.  Roughly speaking, the main line of Wolfe's forces, three deep,
with himself, Monckton, and Murray in command, faced the rear of Quebec
about three quarters of a mile from what was then the wall.  To his
left was the wooded road now known as St. Louis.  He posts Townshend
facing this, at right angles to his front line.  Another battalion lay
in the woods to the rear.  There were, besides, a reserve regiment, and
a battalion to guard the landing.

What was Wolfe's position?  Behind him lay Bougainville with three
thousand French soldiers, fresh and in perfect condition.  In front lay
Quebec with three thousand more.  To his right was the river; to his
left, across the St. Charles, Montcalm's main army of five thousand
men.  "When your enemies blunder, {271} don't interrupt them," Napoleon
is reported to have advised.  If some one had not blundered badly now,
it might have been a second Ticonderoga with Wolfe; but some one did
blunder most tragically.

Montcalm had come from the trenches above Beauport, where he had been
guarding against Saunders' landing, and he had ordered hot tea and beer
served to the troops, when he happened to look across the St. Charles
River towards Quebec.  It had been cloudy, but the sun had just burst
out; and there, standing in the morning light, were the English in
battle array, red coat and tartan kilt, grenadier and Highlander, in
the distance a confused mass of color, which was not the white uniform
of the French.

"This is a serious business," said Montcalm hurriedly to his aide.
Then, spurs to his big black horse, he was galloping furiously along
the Beauport road, over the resounding bridge across the St. Charles,
up the steep cobblestone streets that lead from Lower to Upper Town,
and out by the St. Louis road to the Plains of Abraham.  In Quebec all
was confusion.  _Who_ had given the order for the troops to move out
against the English without waiting for Bougainville to come from Cape
Rouge?  But there they were, huddling, disorderly columns that crowded
on each other, filing out of the St. Louis and St. John Gates, with a
long string of battalions following Montcalm up from the St. Charles.
And Ramezay, who was commandant of the city, refused to send out part
of his troops; and Vaudreuil, who was at Beauport, delayed to come; and
though Montcalm waited till ten o'clock, Bougainville did not come up
from Cape Rouge with his three thousand men.  Easy to criticise and say
Montcalm should have waited till Bougainville and Vaudreuil came.  He
could _not_ wait, for Wolfe's position cut his forces in two, and the
army was without supplies.  With his four thousand five hundred men he
accepted fate's challenge.

Bagpipes shrilling, English flags waving to the wind, the French
soldiers shouting riotously, the two armies moved towards each other.
Then the English halted, silent, motionless {272} statues.  The men
were refreshed, for during the four hours' wait from daylight, Wolfe
had permitted them to rest on the grassed plain.  The French came
bounding forward, firing as they ran, and bending down to reload.  The
English waited till the French were but forty yards away.  "They were
not to throw away their fire," Wolfe had ordered.  Now forty yards, if
you measure it off in your mind's eye, is short space between hostile
armies.  It is not as wide as the average garden front in a suburban
city.  Then suddenly the thin red line of the English spoke in a crash
of fire.  The shots were so simultaneous that they sounded like one
terrific crash of ear-splitting thunder.  The French had no time to
halt before a second volley rent the air.  Then a clattering fire
rocketed from the British like echoes from a precipice.  With wild
halloo the British were charging, . . . charging, . . . charging, the
Highlanders leading with their broadswords flashing overhead and their
mountain blood on fire, Wolfe to the fore of the grenadiers till a shot
broke his wrist!  Wrapping his handkerchief about the wound as he ran,
the victorious young general was dashing forward when a second shot hit
him and a third pierced his breast.  He staggered a step, reeled, fell
to the ground.  Three soldiers and an officer ran to his aid and
carried him in their arms to the rear.  He would have no surgeon.  It
was useless, he said.  "But the day is ours, and see that you keep it,"
he muttered, sinking back unconscious.  A moment later he was roused by
wild, hilarious, jubilant, heart-shattering shouts.

"Gad! they run!  See how they run!" said an English voice.

"_Who_--run?" demanded Wolfe, roused as if from the sleep of death.

"The enemy, sir.  They give way . . . everywhere."

"Go, one of you," commanded the dying general; "tell Colonel Burton to
march Webb's regiment down Charles River to cut off retreat by the
bridge.  Now God be praised!" he added, sinking back; "I die in peace!"
And the spirit of Wolfe had departed, leaving as a heritage a New
Empire of the North, and an immortal fame.

[Illustration: DEATH OF WOLFE  (From the painting by Benjamin West)]


Fate had gone hard against the gallant Montcalm.  The first volley from
the English line had mowed his soldiers down like ripe wheat.  At the
second volley the ranks broke and the ground was thick strewn with the
dead.  When the English charged, the French fled in wildest panic
downhill for the St. Charles.  Wounded and faint, Montcalm on his black
charger was swept swiftly along St. Louis road in the blind stampede of
retreat.  Near the walls a ball passed through his groins.  Two
soldiers caught him from falling, and steadied him on either side of
his horse through St. Louis gate, where women, waiting in mad anxiety,
saw the blood dripping over his horse.

"My God!  My God!  Our marquis is slain!" they screamed.

"It is nothing,--nothing,--good friends; don't trouble about me,"
answered the wounded general as he passed for the last time under the
arched gateway of St. Louis road.

"How long have I to live?" he asked the surgeon into whose house he had
been carried.

"Few hours, my lord."

"So much the better," answered Montcalm.  "I shall not live to see
Quebec surrendered."

Before daylight, he was dead.  Wrapped in his soldier's cloak, laid in
a rough box, the body was carried that night to the Ursuline Convent,
where a bursting bomb had scooped a great hole in the floor.  Sad-eyed
nuns and priests crowded the chapel.  By torchlight, amid tears and
sobs, the body was laid to rest.

Both generals had died as they had lived,--gallantly.  To-day both are
regarded as heroes and commemorated by monuments; but how did their
governments treat them?  Of course there were wild huzzas in London and
solemn memorial services over Wolfe; but when his aged mother
petitioned the government that her dead son's salary might be computed
at 10 pounds a day,--the salary of a commander in chief,--instead of 2
pounds a day, she was refused in as curtly uncivil a note as was ever
penned.  Montcalm had died in debt, and when his family petitioned the
French government to pay these debts, the King thought it should be
done, but he did not take the trouble to see that his {274} good
intention was carried out.  It was easy and cheaper for orators to talk
of heroes giving their lives for their country.  There are no better
examples in history of the truth that glory and honor and true service
must be their own reward, independent of any compensation, any
suffering, any sacrifice.

Though the panic retreat continued for hours and Quebec was not
surrendered for some days, the battle was practically decided in ten
minutes.  The campaign of the next year was gallant but fruitless.  In
April, before the fleet has come back to the English, De Lévis throws
himself with the remnants of the French army against the rear wall of
Quebec; and as Montcalm had come out to fight Wolfe, so Murray marches
out to fight De Lévis.  Both sides claimed the battle of Ste. Foye as
victory, but another such victory would have exterminated the English.
Lévis outside the walls, Murray glad to be inside the walls, each side
waited for the spring fleet.  If France had come to Canada's aid, even
yet the country might have been won, for sickness had reduced Murray's
army to less than three thousand able men; but the flag that flaunted
from the ship that sailed into the harbor of Quebec on the 9th of May
was British.  That decided Canada's fate.  De Lévis retreated swiftly
for Montreal, but by September the slow-moving General Amherst has
closed in on Montreal from the west, and up the St. Lawrence from the
east proceeds General Murray.  De Lévis and Vaudreuil had less than two
thousand fighting men at Montreal.  September 8th they capitulated, and
three years later, by the Treaty of Paris, Canada passed under the
dominion of England.  Officers, many of the nobility, Bigot and his
crew, sailed for France, where the Intendant's ring were put on trial
and punished for their corruption and misrule.  Bigot suffered
banishment and the confiscation of property.  The other members of his
clique received like sentences.

Spite of the hopes of her devoted founders,--like Champlain and
Maisonneuve,--spite of the blood of her martyrs and the prayers of her
missionaries, spite of all the pathfinding of her {275} explorers,
spite of the dauntless warfare of her soldier knights,--like Frontenac
and Iberville and Montcalm,--New France had fallen.


For two reasons: because of England's sea power; because of the
unblushing, shameless, gilded corruption of the French court, which
cared less for the fate of Canada than the leer of a painted fool
behind her fan.  But be this remembered,--and here was the hand of
overruling Destiny or Providence,--the fall of New France, like the
fall of the seed to the ready soil, was the rebirth of a new nation.
Henceforth it is not New France, the appendage of an Old World nation.
It is Canada,--a New Dominion.

To-day wander round Quebec.  Tablets and monuments consecrate many of
the old hero days.  Though the British government rebuilt a line of
walls in the early eighteen hundreds, you will find it hard to trace
even a vestige of the old French walls.  Mounds tell you where there
were bastions.  A magnificent boulevard tops the most of the old
ramparts.  An imposing hotel stands where Castle St. Louis once frowned
over the St. Lawrence.  Of the palace where the Intendant held his
revels there are not even ruins.  If you drive out past Beauport, you
will find at the end of a nine-mile forest path the crumbling brick
walls of Château Bigot, the Hermitage, half buried, in the days when I
visited it, with rose vines and orchard trees gone wild.  That is all
you will find of the court clique whose folly brought Canada's doom;
but as you drive back from Beauport there towers the city from the
rocky heights above the St. Lawrence,--chapel spire and cross and domed
cathedral roofs aglint in the sunlight like a city of gold.  The
church, baptized by the blood of its martyrs, is there in pristine
power; and the fruitful meadows bear witness to the prosperity of the
habitant on whom the burden fell in the days of the ancient régime.
Who shall say that habitant and church do not deserve the place of
power they hold in the government of the Dominion?



FROM 1763 TO 1812

English law and Quebec--French rights guarded--Pontiac's war--Siege of
Detroit--Fight at Bloody Run--Michilimackinac falls--How Bouquet wins
victory--Return of captives--The peddlers--Methods of
Nor'westers--Traders invade the Up Country--Disaffection in
Canada--Canada invaded--Quebec invested--Montgomery's fight--"Rats in a
trap"--Relief at last--Tricks of ringsters--Coming of Loyalists--Life
in the backwoods

Quebec has fallen.  As jackals gather to feast on the carcass of the
dead lion, so rallies a rabble of adventurers on the trail of the
victorious army.  Sutlers, traders, teamsters, riffraff,--soldiers of
fortune,--stampede to Montreal and Quebec as to a new gold field.  When
Major Robert Rogers, the English forest ranger, proceeds up the lakes
to take over the western fur posts,--Presqu' Isle, Detroit,
Michilimackinac,--he is followed by hosts of adventurers looking for
swift way to fortune by either the fur trade or by picking the bones of
the dead lion.  Major Rogers, beating up Lake Ontario and Lake Erie
with two hundred bushwhackers, pausing in camp near modern Sandusky,
meets the renowned Ottawa warrior, Pontiac, who had fought with the
French against Braddock and now wants to know in voice of thunder what
all this talk about the French being conquered means; how _dare_ the
French, because _they_ have proved paltroons, deed away the Indian
lands of Canada?  How dare Rogers, the white chief of the English
rangers, come here with his pale-faced warriors to Pontiac's land?  How
Rogers answered the veteran red-skinned warrior is not told.  All that
is known is--the French gave up their western furs with bad grace, and
the English commandants forgot to appease the wound to the Indians'
pride by the customary gifts over solemn powwow.  At Detroit and
Michilimackinac the French quietly withdraw from the palisades and
build their white-washed cottages outside the limits of the fort--2500
French habitants there are at Detroit.

If the four or five hundred English adventurers who swarmed to Canada
on the heels of the English army thought to batten on the sixty
thousand defeated French inhabitants, far otherwise thought and decreed
the English generals, Sir Jeffrey {277} Amherst, and Murray, who
succeeded him.  "You will observe that the French are British subjects
as much as we are, and treat them accordingly," ruled Amherst; and
General Murray, who practically became the first governor of Canada on
Amherst's withdrawal, at once set himself to establish justice.


No more forced labor!  No more carrion birds of the official classes,
like Bigot, fattening on the poor habitants!  British government in
Canada for the next few years is known as the period of military rule.
At Quebec, at Three Rivers, at Montreal, the commanding officers
established martial law with biweekly courts; and in the parishes the
local French officers, or seigneurs, are authorized to hear civil
cases.  By the terms of surrender the people have been guaranteed their
religious liberty; and the Treaty of Paris, which cedes all Canada to
England in 1763, repeats this guarantee, though it leaves a thorn of
trouble in the flesh of England by reserving to France for the benefit
of the Grand Banks fishermen the Islands of St. Pierre and Miquelon, as
well as shore rights of fishing on the west coast of Newfoundland.
Also, the proprietary rights of Jesuits, Sulpicians, Franciscans, are
to remain in abeyance for the pleasure of the English crown.  The
rights of the sisterhoods are at once confirmed.

{278} One of General Murray's first acts as governor is to convey
gentle hint to the Abbé Le Loutre, now released from prison and come
back to Canada, that his absence will be appreciated by the government.
Within a few years there are five hundred English residents in Montreal
and Quebec; and now trouble begins for the government,--that wrangle
between English and French, between Protestant and Catholic, which is
to go on for a hundred years and retard Canada's progress by a century.


Being British-born subjects, the few hundred demand that the Governor
call an assembly,--an elective assembly; but by the laws of England,
Roman Catholics must abjure their religion before they can take office,
and by the Treaty of Paris the Catholics of Canada have been guaranteed
the freedom of their religion.  To grant an elective assembly now would
mean that the representatives of the five hundred English traders would
rule over 70,000 French.  When accusing the French Catholics of Quebec
of remaining a solidarity so that they may wield the balance of power,
it is well to remember how and when the quarrel began.  Murray sides
with the French and stands like a rock for their right.  He will have
no elective assembly under present conditions; and he puts summary stop
to the business English magistrates and English bailiffs have hatched
against the rights of the habitant,--of seizing lands for debt at a
time when money is scarce, summoning the debtor simultaneously to two
different courts, then charging such outrageous fees that the debtor's
land is sold for the fees, to be bought in by the rascal ring who have
arranged the plot.  Ordinances are still proclaimed in primitive
fashion by the crier going through the streets shouting the laws to
beat of drum; but as the crier {279} shouts in English, the habitants
know no more of the laws than if he shouted in Greek.

As Murray opposes the clamor of the English minority, the English
petition the home government for Murray's recall.  In the light of the
fact that there were no schools at all in Canada except the Catholic
seminaries, and that of the five hundred English residents only two
hundred had permanent homes in Montreal and Quebec, it is rather
instructive to read as one of the grievances of the English minority
"_that the only teachers in Canada were Catholics_."

The governor-generalship is offered to Chatham, the great statesman, at
5000 pounds a year.  Chatham refusing the position, there comes in 1768
as governor, at 1200 pounds a year, Sir Guy Carleton, fellow-soldier
and friend of Wolfe in the great war, who follows in Murray's
footsteps, stands like a rock for the rights of the French, orders
debtors released from jail, fees reduced, and a stoppage of forced land
sales.  Bitter is the disappointment to the land jobbers, who had
looked for a partisan in Carleton; doubly bitter, for Carleton goes one
better than Murray.  For years the French government had issued paper
money in Quebec.  After the conquest seventeen millions of these
worthless government promissory notes were outstanding in the hands of
the habitants.  Knowing that the paper money is to be redeemed by the
English government, English jobbers are now busy buying up the paper
among the poor French at fifteen cents on the dollar.  Carleton sends
the town crier from parish to parish, warning the habitants to hold
their money and register the amounts with the magistrates till the
whole matter can be arranged between England and France.

The first newspaper is established now in Quebec, _The Quebec Gazette_,
printed in both English and French.  Also the first trouble now arises
from having ceded France the two tiny islands south of Newfoundland,
St.  Pierre and Miquelon.  By English navigation laws, all trade must
be in English ships.  Good!  The smugglers slip into St. Pierre with a
cargo.  By night a ship with a white sail slips out of St. Pierre with
that {280} cargo.  At Gaspé the sail of that ship is red; at Saguenay
it is yellow; at Quebec it is perhaps brown.  Ostensibly the ship is a
fishing smack, but it leaves other cargo than fish at the habitant
hamlets of the St.  Lawrence; and the smuggling from St. Pierre that
began in Carleton's time is continued to-day in the very same way.


And Guy Carleton, though he is an Englishman and owes his appointment
to the complaints of the English minority against Murray, remains
absolutely impartial.  Good reason for the wisdom of his policy.  There
are rumblings from the New England colonies that forewarn the coming
earthquake.  For years friction has been growing between the mother
country and the colonies.  The story of the Revolution does not belong
to the story of Canada.  For years far-sighted statesmen had predicted
that the minute New England ceased to fear New France, ceased to need
England's protection, that minute the growing friction would flame in
open war.  Carleton foresaw that to pander to the English minority
would sacrifice the loyalty of the French.  Thus he reported to the
home government, and the Quebec Act of 1774 came to the relief of the
French.  By it Canada's boundaries were extended across the region of
the Ohio to the Mississippi.  French laws were restored {281} in all
civil actions.  English law was to rule in criminal cases, which meant
trial by jury.  The French are relieved from oaths of office and
enabled to serve on the jury.  Also, the Catholic clergy is entitled to
collect its usual tithe of one twenty-sixth from the Catholics.  An
elective assembly is refused for reasons that are plain, but a
legislative council is granted, to be appointed by the crown.  For the
expense of government a slight tax is levied on liquor; but as the St.
Pierre smuggling is now flourishing, the tax docs not begin to meet the
cost of government, and the difference is paid from the imperial
treasury.  However badly the imperial government blundered with the New
England colonies, her treatment of Quebec was an object lesson in
colonizing to the world.  Had she treated her New England colonies half
as justly as she treated Quebec, British America might to-day extend to
Mexico.  Had she treated Quebec half as unjustly as she treated her own
offspring of New England, the United States might to-day extend to the
Arctic Circle.  The man who saved Canada to England, in the first place
by wisdom, in the second place by war, was Sir Guy Carleton.

While the English and French, Protestant and Catholic, wrangle for
power in Quebec there rages on the frontier one of the most devastating
Indian wars known to American history.  Not for nothing had Pontiac
drawn himself to his full height and defied Major Rogers down on Lake
Erie.  From tribe to tribe the lithe coureurs ran, naked but for the
breechcloth, painted as for war, carrying in one hand the tomahawk
dipped in blood, in the other the wampum belt of purple, typifying war.
The French had deeded away the Indian lands to the English!  The news
ran like wildfire, ran by moccasin telegram from Montreal up Ottawa
River to Michilimackinac, from Niagara westward to Detroit, and
southward to Presqu' Isle and all that chain of forts leading
southwestward to the Mississippi.  Was it a "Conspiracy of Pontiac," as
it has been called?  Hardly.  It was more one of those general
movements of unrest, of discontent, of misunderstanding, that but
awaits the appearance of {282} a brave leader to become a torrent of
destruction.  Pontiac, the Ottawa chief, was such a leader, and to his
standard rallied Indians from Virginia, from the Mississippi, from Lake
Superior.  Of the universal unrest among the Indians the English were
not ignorant, but they failed to realize its significance; failed, too,
to realize that the French fur traders, cast out of the western forts
and now roaming the wilds, fanned the flame, gave presents of gunpowder
and firearms to the savages, and egged the hostiles on against the new
possessors of Canada, in order to divert the fur trade to French
traders still in Louisiana.  Down at Miami, southwest of Lake Erie,
Ensign Holmes hears in March of 1763 that the war belt has been carried
to the Illinois.  Up at Detroit, in May, Pontiac is camped on the east
side of the river with eight hundred hunters.  Daily the French
farmers, who supply the fort with provisions, carry word to Major
Gladwin that the Indians are acting strangely, holding long and secret
powwow, borrowing files to saw off the barrels of their muskets short.
A French woman, who has visited the Indians across the river for a
supply of maple sugar, comes to Gladwin on May 5 with the same story.
From eight hundred, the Indians increase to two thousand.  Old
Catherine, a toothless squaw, comes shaking as with the palsy to the
fort, and with mumbling words warns Gladwin to "Beware, beware!"  So
does a young girl whose fine eyes have caught the fancy of Gladwin
himself.  Breaking out with bitter weeping, she covers her head with
her shawl and bids her white lover have a care how he meets Pontiac in
council.  Gladwin himself was a seasoned campaigner, who had escaped
the hurricane of death with Braddock and had also served under Amherst
at Montreal.  In his fort are one hundred and twenty soldiers and forty
traders.  At the wharf lie the two armed schooners, _Beaver_ and
_Gladwin_.  When Pontiac comes with his sixty warriors Gladwin is ready
for him.  In the council house the warriors seat themselves, weapons
concealed under blankets; but when Pontiac raises the wampum belt that
was to be the signal for the massacre to begin, Major Gladwin, never
moving his light blue eyes from {283} the snaky gleam of the Indian,
waves his hand, and at the motion there is a roll of drums, a grounding
of the sentry's arms, a trampling of soldiers outside, a rush as of
white men marching.  Pontiac is dumfounded and departs without giving
the signal.  Back in his cabin of rushes across the river he rages like
a maniac and buries a tomahawk in the skull of the old squaw Catherine.
Monday, May 9, at ten o'clock he comes again, followed by a rabble of
hunters.  The gates are shut in his face.  He shouts for admittance.
The sentry opens the wicket and in traders' vernacular bids him go
about his business.  There is a wild war yell.  The siege of Detroit


The story of that siege would fill volumes.  For fifteen months it
lasted, the French remaining neutral, selling provisions to both sides,
Gladwin defiant inside his palisades, the Indians persistent as enraged
hornets.  Two English officers who have been out hunting are waylaid,
murdered, skinned, the skin sewed into powder pouches, the bloody
carcasses sent drifting down on the flood of waters past the fort
walls.  Desperately in need of provisions from the French, Gladwin
consents to temporary truce while Captain Campbell and others go out to
parley with the Indians.  {284} Gladwin obtains cart loads of
provisions during the parley, but Pontiac violates the honor of war by
holding the messengers captive.  Burning arrows are shot at the fort
walls.  Gladwin's men sally out by night, hack down the orchards that
conceal the enemy, burn all outbuildings, and come back without losing
a man.  Nightly, too, lapping the canoe noiselessly across water with
the palm of the hand, one of the French farmers comes with fresh
provisions.  Gladwin has sent a secret messenger, with letter in his
powder pouch, through the lines of the besiegers to Niagara for aid.
May 30, moving slowly, all sails out, the English flag flying from the
prow, comes a convoy of sailboats up the river.  Cheer on cheer rent
the air.  The soldiers at watch in the galleries inside the palisades
tossed their caps overhead, but as the ships came nearer the whites
were paralyzed with horror.  Silence froze the cheer on the parted
lips.  Indian warriors manned the boats.  The convoy of ninety-six men
had been cut to pieces, only a few soldiers escaping back to Niagara, a
few coming on, compelled by the Indians to act as rowers.  As the boats
passed the fort, whoops of derision, wild war chants, eldritch screams,
rose from the Indians.  One desperate white captive rose like a flash
from his place at the rowlocks, caught his Indian captor by the scuff
of the neck and threw him into the river; but the redskin grappled the
other in a grip of death.  Turning over and over, locked in each
other's arms, the hate of the inferno in their faces, soldier and
Indian swept down to watery death in the river tide.  Taking advantage
of the confusion, and under protection of the fort guns, one of the
other captives sprang into the river and succeeded in swimming safely
to the fort.  Terrible was the news he brought.  All the other forts
south of Niagara, with the exception of Fort Pitt,--Miami, St.  Joseph,
Presqu' Isle,--lay in ashes.  From some not a man had escaped to tell
the story.

That night it was pitch-dark,--soft, velvet, warm summer darkness.
From the fort the soldiers could see the sixty captives from the convoy
burning outside at the torture stakes.  Then as gray morning came
mangled corpses floated past on the river tide.  June 18 another vessel
glides up the river with help, but {285} the garrison is afraid of a
second disaster, for eight hundred warriors have lain in ambush along
the river.  Gladwin orders a cannon fired.  The boat fires back answer,
but the wind falls and she is compelled to anchor for the night below
the fort.  Sixty soldiers armed to the teeth are on board; but the
captain is determined to out-trick the Indians, and he permits only
twelve of his men at a time on deck.  Darkness has barely fallen on the
river before the waters are alive with canoes, and naked warriors
clamber to the decks like scrambling monkeys, so sure they have
outnumbered their prey that they forget all caution.  At the signal of
a hammer knock on deck,--rap--rap--rap,--three times short and sharp,
up swarm the soldiers from the hatchway.  Fourteen Indians dropped on
the deck in as many seconds.  Others were thrown on bayonet points into
the river.  It is said that after the fight of a few seconds on the
ship the decks looked like a butcher's shambles.  Finally the schooner
anchored at Detroit, to the immense relief of the beleaguered garrison.
So elated were the English, one soldier dashed from a sally port and
scalped a dying Indian in full view of both sides.  Swift came Indian
vengeance.  Captain Campbell, the truce messenger, was hacked to
pieces.  By July 28, Dalzell has come from Niagara with nearly two
hundred men, including Rogers, the famous Indian fighter.  Both Dalzell
and Rogers are mad for a rush from the fort to deal one crushing blow
to the Indians.  Here the one mistake of the siege was made.  Gladwin
was against all risk, for the Indians were now dropping off to the
hunting field, but Dalzell and Rogers were for punishing them before
they left.  In the midst of a dense night fog the English sallied from
the fort at two o'clock on the 31st of July for Pontiac's main camp,
about two miles up the river, boats rowing upstream abreast the
marchers.  It was hot and sultry.  The two hundred and fifty
bushrangers marched in shirt sleeves, two abreast.  A narrow footbridge
led across a brook, since known as Bloody Run, to cliffs behind which
the Indians were intrenched.  Along the trail were the whitewashed
cottages of the French farmers, who stared from their windows in their
nightcaps, amazed beyond speech at the rashness of the {286} English.
On a smaller scale it was a repetition of Braddock's defeat on the
Ohio.  Indians lay in ambush behind every house, every shrub, in the
long grass.  They only waited till Dalzell's men had crossed the bridge
and were charging the hill at a run.  Then the war whoop shrilled both
to fore and to rear.  The Indians doubled up on their trapped foe from
both sides.  Rogers' Rangers dashed for hiding in a house.  The drum
beat retreat.  Under cover of Rogers' shots from one side, shots from
the boats on the other, Dalzell's men escaped at a panic run back over
the trail with a loss of some sixty dead.  In September came more ships
with more men, again to be ambushed at the narrows, and again to reach
Detroit, as the old record says, "bloody as a butcher's shop."  So the
siege dragged on for more than a year at Detroit.  Winter witnessed a
slight truce to fighting, for starvation drove the Indians to the
hunting field; but May saw Pontiac again encamped under the walls of
Detroit till word came from the French on the lower Mississippi in
October, definitely and for all, they would not join the Indians.  Then
Pontiac knew his cause was lost.

Up at Michilimackinac similar scenes were enacted.  Major Etherington
and Captain Leslie had some thirty-five soldiers.  There were also
hosts of traders outside the walls, among whom was Alexander Henry of
Montreal.  Word had come of Pontiac at Detroit, but Etherington did not
realize that the uprising was general.  June 4 was the King's birthday.
Shops had been closed.  Flags blew above the fort.  Gates were wide
open.  Squaws with heads under shawls sat hunched around the house
steps, with that concealed beneath their shawls which the English did
not guess.  All the men except Henry, who was writing letters, and some
Frenchmen, who understood the danger signs, had gone outside the gates
to watch a fast and furious game of lacrosse.  Again and again the ball
came bounding towards the fort gates, only to be whisked to the other
end of the field by a deft toss, followed by the swift runners.  No one
was louder in applause than Etherington.  The officers were completely
off guard.  Suddenly the crowds swayed, gave way, opened; . . .  {287}
and down the field towards the fort gates surged the players.  A
dexterous pitch!  The ball was inside the fort.  After it dashed the
Indians.  In a flash weapons were grasped from the shawls of the
squaws.  Musket and knife did the rest.  When Henry heard the war whoop
and looked from a window he saw Indian warriors bending to drink the
blood of hearts that were yet warm.  For two days Henry lived in the
rubbish heap of the attic in the house of Langlade, a pioneer of
Wisconsin.  Of the whites at Michilimackinac only twenty escaped death,
and they were carried prisoners to the Lower Country for ransom.

From Virginia to Lake Superior such was the Indian war known as
Pontiac's Campaign.  Fort Pitt held out like Detroit.  Niagara was too
strong for assault, but in September twenty-four soldiers, who had been
protecting _portage_ past the falls, were waylaid and driven over the
precipice at the place called Devil's Hole.  More soldiers sent to the
rescue met like fate, horses and wagons being stampeded over the rocks,
seventy men in all being hurled to death in the wild canyon.

Amherst, who was military commander at this time, was driven nearly out
of his senses.  A foe like the French, who would stand and do battle,
he could fight; but this phantom foe, that vanished like mist through
the woods, baffled the English soldier.  In less than six months two
thousand whites had been slain; and Amherst could not even find his
foe, let alone strike him.  "_Can we not inoculate them with smallpox,
or set bloodhounds to track them_?" he writes distractedly.

By the summer of 1764 the English had taken the war path.  Bradstreet
was to go up the lakes with twelve hundred men, Bouquet, with like
forces, to follow the old Pennsylvania road to the Ohio, both generals
to unite somewhere south of Lake Erie.  Of Bradstreet the least said
the better.  He had done well in the great war when he captured Fort
Frontenac almost without a blow; but now he strangely played the fool.
He seemed to think that peace, peace at any price, was the object,
whereas peace that is not a victory is worthless with the Indian.
Deputies met him on the 12th of August near Presqu' Isle, Lake Erie.
{288} They carried no wampum belts and were really spies.  Without
demanding reparation, without a word as to restoring harried captives,
without hostages for good conduct, Bradstreet entered into a fool's
peace with his foes, proceeded up to Detroit, and was back at Niagara
by winter; though he must have realized the worthlessness of the
campaign when his messengers sent to the Illinois were ambushed.

[Illustration: BOUQUET]

When Bouquet heard of the sham peace he was furious and repudiated
Bradstreet's treaty in toto.  Bouquet was a veteran of the great war,
and knew bushfighting from seven years' experience on Pennsylvania
frontiers.  Slowly, with his fifteen hundred rangers and five hundred
Highlanders, express riders keeping the trail open from fort to fort,
scouts to fore, Bouquet moved along the old army trail used by Forbes
to reach Fort Pitt.  Friendly Indians had been warned to keep green
branches as signals in the muzzles of their guns.  All others were to
be shot without mercy.  Indians vanished before his march like mist
before the sun.  August 5 found Bouquet south of Fort Pitt at a place
known as Bushy Run.  The scouts had gone ahead to prepare nooning for
the army at the Run.  In seven hours the men had marched seventeen
miles spite of sweltering heat; but at one, just as the thirsty columns
were nearing the rest place, the crack--crack--crack of rifle shots to
the fore set every man's blood jumping.  From quick march they broke to
a run, priming guns, ball in mouth as they ran.  A moment later the old
trick of Braddock's ambush was being repeated, but this time the
Indians were dealing with a seasoned man.  Bouquet swung his fighters
in a circle round the stampeding horses and provision wagons.  The heat
was terrific, the men almost mad with thirst, the horses neighing and
plunging and breaking away to the woods; and the army stood, a
red-coated, tartan-plaid target for invisible foes!  By this time the
men were fighting as Indians fight--breaking ranks, jumping from tree
to tree.  It is n't easy to keep men standing as targets when they
can't get at the foe; but Bouquet, riding from place to place, kept his
men in hand till darkness screened them.  Sixty had fallen.  A circular
barricade {289} was built of flour bags.  Inside this the wounded were
laid, and the army camped without water.  The agonies of that night
need not be told.  Here the neighing of horses would bring down a
clatter of bullets aimed in the dark; and the groans of the wounded,
trampled by the stampeding cavalcade, would mingle with the screams of
terror from the horses.  The night continued hot almost as day in the
sultry forest, and the thirst with both man and beast became anguish.
Another such day and another such night, and Bouquet could foresee his
fate would be worse than Braddock's.  Passing from man to man, he gave
the army their instructions for the next day.  They would form in three
platoons, with the center battalion advanced to the fore, as if to lead
attack.  Suddenly the center was to feign defeat and turn as if in
panic flight.  It was to be guessed that the Indians would pursue
headlong.  Instantly the flank battalions were to sweep through the
woods in wide circle and close in on the rear of the savages.  Then the
fleeing center was to turn.  The savages would be surrounded.  Daybreak
came with a cracking of shots from ambush.  Officers and men carried
out instructions exactly as Bouquet had planned.  At ten o'clock the
center column broke ranks, wavered, turned, . . . fled in wild panic!
With the whooping of a wolf pack in full cry, the savages burst from
ambush in pursuit.  The sides deployed.  A moment later the center had
turned to fight the pursuer, {290} and the Highlanders broke from the
woods, yelling their slogan, with broadswords cutting a terrible
hand-to-hand swath.  Sixty Indians were slashed to death in as many
seconds.  Though the British lost one hundred and fifteen, killed and
wounded, the Indians were in full flight, blind terror at their heels.
The way was now open to Port Pitt, but Bouquet did not dally inside the
palisades.  On down the Ohio he pursued the panic-stricken savages,
pausing neither for deputies nor reënforcements.  At Muskingum Creek
the Indians sent back the old men to sue, sue abjectedly, for peace at
any cost.

Bouquet met them with the stern front that never fails to win respect.
They need not palm off their lie that the fault lay with the foolish
young warriors.  If the old chiefs would not control the young braves,
then the whole tribe, the whole Indian race, must pay the penalty.  In
terror the deputies hung their heads.  He would not even discuss the
terms of peace, Bouquet declared, till the Indians restored every
captive,--man, woman, and child, even the child of Indian parentage
born in captivity.  The captives must be given suitable clothing,
horses, and presents.  Twelve days only would he permit them to gather
the captives.  If man, woman, or child were lacking on the twelfth day,
he would pursue them and punish them to the uttermost ends of earth.

The Indians were dumfounded.  These were not soft words.  Not thus had
the French spoken, with the giving of manifold presents.  But powder
was exhausted.  No more was coming from the French traders of the
Mississippi.  Winter was approaching, and the Indians must hunt or
starve.  Again the coureurs are sent spurring the woods from tribe to
tribe with wampum belts, but this time the belts are the white bands of
peace.  While Bouquet waits he sends back over the trail for hospital
nurses to receive the captives, and the army is set knocking up rude
barracks of log and thatch in the wilderness.  Then the captives begin
to come.  It is a scene for the brush of artist, for all frontiersmen
who have lost friends have rallied to Bouquet's camp, hoping against
hope and afraid to hope.  There is the mother, whose infant child has
been snatched from her arms in {291} some frontier attack, now scanning
the lines as they come in, mad with hope and fear.  There is the
husband, whose wife has been torn away to some savage's tepee,
searching, searching, searching among the sad, wild-eyed, ill-clad
rabble for one with some resemblance to the wife he loved.  There is
the father seeking lost daughters and afraid of what he may find; and
there are the captives themselves, some of the women demented from the
abuse they have received.  England may have spent her millions to
protect her colonies, but she never spent in anguish what these rude
frontiersmen suffered at Bouquet's camp.

[Illustration: RETURN OF THE ENGLISH CAPTIVES  (From a contemporary

So ended what is known as the Pontiac War.  Up at Detroit in 1765
Pontiac, in council with the whites, explains that he has listened to
bad advice, but now his heart is right.  "Father, you have stopped the
rum barrel while we talked," he says grimly; "as our business is
finished, we request that you open the barrel, that we may drink and be

Not a very heroic curtain fall to a dramatic life.  But pause a bit:
the Pontiac War was the last united stand of a doomed race against the
advance of the conquering alien; and the Indian is defeated, and he
knows it, and he acknowledges it, and he {292} drowns his despair in a
vice, and so he passes down the Long Trail of time with his face to the
west, doomed, hopeless, pushed westward and ever west.

Pontiac goes down the Mississippi to his friends, the French fur
traders of St. Louis.  One morning in 1767, after a drinking bout, he
is found across the river, lying in camp, with his skull split to the
neck.  By the sword he had lived, by the sword he perished.  Was the
murder the result of a drunken quarrel, or did some frenzied
frontiersman with deathless woes bribe the hand of the assassin?  The
truth of the matter is unknown, and Pontiac's death remains a theme for

What with struggles for power and Indian wars, one might think that the
few hundred English colonists of Quebec and Montreal had all they could
do.  Not so: their quarrels with the French Catholics and fights with
the Indians are merely incidental to the main aim of their lives, to
the one object that has brought them stampeding to Canada as to a new
gold field, namely, quick way to wealth; and the only quick way to
wealth was by the fur trade.  In the wilderness of the Up Country
wander some two or three thousand cast-off wood rovers of the old
French fur trade.  As the prodigals come down the Ottawa, down the
Detroit, down the St. Lawrence, the English and Scotch merchants of
Montreal and Quebec meet them.  Mighty names those merchants have in
history now,--McGillivrays and MacKenzies and McGills and Henrys and
MacLeods and MacGregors and Ogilvies and MacTavishes and Camerons,--but
at this period of the game the most of them were what we to-day would
call petty merchants or peddlers.  In their storehouses--small,
one-story, frame affairs--were packed goods for trade.  With these
goods they quickly outfitted the French bushrover--$3000 worth to a
canoe--and packed the fellow back to the wilderness to trade on shares
before any rival firm could hire him.  Within five years of Wolfe's
victory in 1759 all the French bushrovers of the Up Country had been
reëngaged by merchants of Montreal and Quebec.


[Illustration: MONTREAL  (From a contemporary print)]

Then imperceptible changes came,--the changes that work so silently
they are like destiny.  Because it is unsafe to let the rascal
bushrovers and voyageurs go off by themselves with $3000 worth to the
canoe load, the merchants began to accompany them westward.
"Bourgeois," the voyageurs call their outfitters.  Then, because
success in fur trade must be kept secret, the merchants cease to have
their men come down to Montreal.  They meet them with the goods
halfway, at La Vérendrye's old stamping ground on Lake Superior, first
at the place called Grand Portage, then, when the United States
boundary is changed in 1783, at Kaministiquia, or modern Fort William,
named after William McGillivray.  Pontiac's War puts a stop to the new
trade, but by 1766 the merchants are west again.  Henry goes up the
Saskatchewan to the Forks, and comes back with such wealth of furs he
retires a rich magnate of Montreal.  The Frobisher brothers strike for
new hunting ground.  So do Peter Pond and Bostonnais Pangman, and the
MacKenzies, Alexander {294} and Roderick.  Instead of following up the
Saskatchewan, they strike from Lake Winnipeg northward for Churchill
River and Athabasca, and they bring out furs that transform those
peddlers into merchant princes.  A little later the chief buyer of the
Montreal furs is one John Jacob Astor of New York.  Then another
change.  Rivalry hurts fur trade.  Especially do different prices
demoralize the Indians.  The Montreal merchants pool their capital and
become known as the Northwest Fur Company.  They now hire their
voyageurs outright on a salary.  No man is paid less than what would be
$500 in modern money, with board; and any man may rise to be clerk,
trader, wintering partner, with shares worth 800 pounds ($4000), that
bring dividends of two and three hundred per cent.  The petty merchants
whom Murray and Carleton despised became in twenty years the opulent
aristocracy of Montreal, holding the most of the public offices,
dominating the government, filling the judgeships, and entertaining
with a lavish hospitality that put vice-regal splendor in the shade.
The Beaver Club is the great rendezvous of the Montreal partners.
"Fortitude in Distress" is the motto and lords of the ascendant is
their practice.  No man, neither governor nor judge, may ignore these
Nor'westers, and it may be added they are a law unto themselves.  One
example will suffice.  A French merchant of Montreal took it into his
head to have a share of this wealth-giving trade.  He was advised to
pool his interests with the Nor'westers, and he foolishly ignored the
advice.  In camp at Grand Portage on Lake Superior he is told all the
country hereabout belongs to the Nor'westers, and _he_ must decamp.

"Show me proofs this country is yours," he answers.  "Show me the title
deed and I shall decamp."

Next night a band of Nor'westers, voyageurs well plied with rum, came
down the strand to the intruder's tents.  They cut his tents to
ribbons, scatter his goods to the four winds, and beat his voyageurs
into insensibility.

"Voila! there are our proofs," they say.

The French merchant hastens down to Montreal to bring lawsuit, but the
judges, you must remember, are shareholders in the {295} Northwest
Company, and many of the Legislative Council are Nor'westers.  What
with real delays and sham delays and put-offs and legal fees, justice
is a bit tardy.  While the case is pending the French merchant tries
again.  This time he is not molested at Fort William.  They let him
proceed on his way up the old trail to Lake of the Woods, the trail
found by La Vérendrye; and halfway through the wilderness, where the
cataract offers only one path for portage, the Frenchman finds
Nor'-westers building a barricade; he tears it down.  They build
another; he tears that down.  They build a third; fast as he tears
down, they build up.  He must either go back baffled by these suave,
smiling, lawless rivals, or fight on the spot to the death; but there
is neither glory nor wealth being killed in the wilderness, where not
so much as the sands of the shore will tell the true story of the
crime.  So the French merchant compromises, sells out to the
Nor'westers at cost plus carriage, and retires to the St. Lawrence
cursing British justice.

It may be guessed that the sudden eruption of "the peddlers," these
bush banditti, these Scotch soldiers of fortune with French bullies for
fighters, roused the ancient and honorable Hudson's Bay Company from
its half-century slumber of peace.  Anthony Hendry, who had gone up the
Saskatchewan far as the Blackfoot country of the foothills, they had
dismissed as a liar in the fifties because he had reported that he had
seen _Indians on horseback_, whereas the sleepy factors of the bay
ports knew very well they never saw any kind of Indians except Indians
in canoes; but now in the sixties it is noted by the company that not
so many furs are coming down from the Up Country.  It is voted "the
French Canadian peddlers of Montreal" be notified of the company's
exclusive monopoly to the trade of these regions.  One Findley is sent
to Quebec to look after the Hudson's Bay Company's rights; but while
the English company _talks_ about its rights, the Nor'westers go in the
field and _take_ them.

The English company rubs its eyes and sits up and scratches its heavy
head, and passes an order that Mr. Moses Norton, chief {296} factor of
Churchill, send Mr. Samuel Hearne to explore the Up Country.  Hearne
has heard of Far-Away-Metal River, far enough away in all conscience
from the Canadian peddlers; and thither in December, 1770, he finds his
way, after two futile attempts to set out.  Matonabbee, great chief of
the Chippewyans, is his guide,--Matonabbee, who brings furs from the
Athabasca, and is now accompanied by a regiment of wives to act as
beasts of burden in the sledge traces, camp servants, and cooks.
Hearne sets out in midwinter in order to reach the Coppermine River in
summer, by which he can descend to the Arctic in canoes.  Storm or
cold, bog or rock, Matonabbee keeps fast pace, so fast he reaches the
great caribou traverse before provisions have dwindled and in time for
the spring hunt.  Here all the Indian hunters of the north gather twice
a year to hunt the vast herds of caribou going to the seashore for
summer, back to the Up Country for the winter, herds in countless
thousands upon thousands, such multitudes the clicking of the horns
sounds like wind in a leafless forest, the tramp of the hoofs like
galloping cavalry.  Store of meat is laid up for Hearne's voyage by
Matonabbee's Indians; and a band of warriors joins the expedition to go
down Coppermine River.  If Hearne had known Indian customs as well as
he knew the fur trade, he would have known that it boded no good when
Matonabbee ordered the women to wait for his return in the Athabasca
country of the west.  Absence of women on the march meant only one of
two things, a war raid or hunt, and which it was soon enough Hearne
learned.  They had come at last, on July 12, 1771, on Coppermine River,
a mean little stream flowing over rocky bed in the Barren Lands of the
Little Sticks (Trees), when Hearne noticed, just above a cataract, the
domed tepee tops of an Eskimo camp.  It was night, but as bright as day
in the long light of the North.  Instantly, before Hearne could stop
them, his Indians had stripped as for war, and fell upon the sleeping
Eskimo in ruthless massacre.  Men were brained as they dashed from the
domed tents, women speared as they slept, children dispatched with less
thought than the white man would give to the killing of a fly.  In vain
Hearne, {297} with tears in his eyes, begged the Indians to stop.  They
laughed him to scorn, and doubtless wondered where he thought they
yearly got the ten thousand beaver pelts brought to Churchill.  A few
days later, July 17, 1771, Hearne stood on the shores of the Arctic,
heaving to the tide and afloat with ice; but the horrors of the
massacre had robbed him of an explorer's exultation, though he was
first of pathfinders to reach the Arctic overland.  Matonabbee led
Hearne back to Churchill in June of 1772 by a wide westward circle
through the Athabasca Bear Lake Country, which the Hudson's Bay people
thus discovered only a few years before the Nor'westers came.

[Illustration: SAMUEL HEARNE]

No longer dare the Hudson's Bay Company ignore the Up Country.  Hearne
is sent to the Saskatchewan to build Fort Cumberland, and Matthew
Cocking is dispatched to the country of the Blackfeet, modern Alberta,
to beat up trade, where his French voyageur, Louis Primeau, deserts him
bag and baggage, to carry the Hudson's Bay furs off to the Nor'westers.
No longer does the English company slumber on the shores of its frozen
sea.  Yearly are voyageurs sent inland,--"patroons of the woods," given
bounty to stay in the wilds, luring any trade from the Nor'westers.

The Quebec Act, guaranteeing the rights of the French Canadians, had
barely been put in force before the Congress of the {298} revolting
English colonies sent up proclamations to be posted on the church doors
of the parishes, calling on the French to throw off the British yoke,
to join the American colonies, "to seize the opportunity to be free."
Unfortunately for this alluring invitation, Congress had but a few
weeks previously put on record its unsparing condemnation of the Quebec
Act.  Inspired by those New Englanders who, for a century, had suffered
from French raids, Congress had expressed its verdict on the privileges
granted to Quebec in these words: "_Nor can we supress our astonishment
that a British Parliament should establish a religion that has drenched
your island_ [England] _in blood_."  This declaration was the cardinal
blunder of Congress as far as Canada was concerned.  Of the merits of
the quarrel the simple French habitant knew nothing.  He did what his
curé told him to do; and the Catholic Church would not risk casting in
its lot with a Congress that declared its religion had drenched England
in blood.  English inhabitants of Montreal and Quebec, who had flocked
to Canada from the New England colonies, were far readier to listen to
the invitation of Congress than were the French.

Governor Carleton had fewer than 800 troops, and naturally the French
did not rally as volunteers in the impending war between England and
her English colonies.  Should the Congress troops invade Canada?  The
question was hanging fire when Ethan Allen, with his two hundred Green
Mountain boys of Vermont, marched across to Lake Champlain in May of
1775, hobnobbed with the guards of Ticonderoga, who drank not wisely
but too well, then rowed by night across the narrows and knocked at the
wicket beside the main gate.  The sleepy guards, not yet sober from the
night's carouse, admitted the Vermonters as friends.  In rushed the
whole two hundred.  In a trice the Canadian garrison of forty-four were
all captured and Allen was thundering on the chamber door of La Place,
the commandant.  It was five in the morning.  La Place sprang up in his
nightshirt and demanded in whose name he was ordered to surrender.
Ethan Allen answered in words that have gone {299} down to history,
"_In the name of the Great Jehovah and the Continental Congress_."
Later fell Crown Point.  So began the war with Canada in the great

And now, from May to September, Arnold's Green Mountain boys sweep from
Lake Champlain down the Richelieu to the St. Lawrence, as Iberville's
bold bushrovers long ago swept through these woods.  However, the
American rovers take no permanent occupation of the different forts on
the falls of the Richelieu River, preferring rather to overrun the
parishes, dispatching secret spies and waiting for the habitants to
rally.  And they came once too often, once too far, these bold banditti
of the wilderness, clad in buckskin, musket over shoulder, coonskin
cap!  Montreal is so full of spies, so full of friendlies, so full of
Bostonnais in sympathy with the revolutionists, that Allen feels safe
in paddling across the St. Lawrence one September morning to the
Montreal side with only one hundred and fifty men.  Montreal has grown
in these ten years to a city of some twelve thousand, but the gates are
fast shut against the American scouts; and while Allen waits in some
barns of the suburbs, presto! out sallies Major Garden with twice as
many men armed to the teeth, who assault the barns at a rush.  Five
Americans drop at the first crack of the rifles.  The Canadians are
preparing to set fire to the barns.  Allen's men will be picked off as
they rush from the smoke.  Wisely, he saves his Green Mountain boys by
surrender.  Thirty-five capitulate.  The rest have escaped through the
woods.  Carleton refuses to acknowledge the captives as prisoners of
war.  He claps irons on their hands and irons on their feet and places
them on a vessel bound for England to be treated as rebels to the
crown.  It is said those of Allen's men who deserted were French
Canadians in disguise--which may explain why Carleton made such severe
example of his captives and at once purged Montreal of the disaffected
by compelling all who would not take arms to leave.

Carleton's position was chancy enough in all conscience.  The habitants
were wavering.  They refused point-blank to serve as volunteers.  They
supplied the invaders with provisions.  Spies were everywhere.
Practically no help could come from {300} England till spring, and
scouts brought word that two American armies were now marching in force
on Canada,--one by way of the Richelieu, twelve hundred strong, led by
Richard Montgomery of New York, directed against Montreal; the other by
way of the Kennebec, with fifteen hundred men under Benedict Arnold, to
attack Quebec.  Carleton is at Montreal.  He rushes his troops, six
hundred and ninety out of eight hundred men, up the Richelieu to hold
the forts at Chambly and St. John's against Montgomery's advance.

Half September and all October Montgomery camps on the plains before
Fort St. John's, his rough soldiers clad for the most part in their
shirt sleeves, trousers, and coon cap, with badges of "Liberty or
Death" worked in the cap bands, or sprigs of green put in their hats,
in lieu of soldier's uniform.  Inside the fort, Major Preston, the
English commander, has almost seven hundred men, with ample powder.  It
is plain to Montgomery that he can win the fort in only one of two
ways,--shut off provisions and starve the garrison out, or get
possession of heavy artillery to batter down the walls.  It is said
that fortune favors the dauntless.  So it was with Montgomery, for he
was enabled to besiege the fort in both ways.  Carleton had rushed a
Colonel McLean to the relief of St. John's with a force of French
volunteers, but the French deserted en masse.  McLean was left without
any soldiers.  This cut off St. John's from supply of provisions.  At
Chambly Fort was a Major Stopford with eighty men and a supply of heavy
artillery.  Montgomery sent a detachment to capture Chambly for the
sake of its artillery.  Stopford surrendered to the Americans without a
blow, and the heavy cannon were forthwith trundled along the river to
Montgomery at St. John's.  Preston sends frantic appeal to Carleton for
help.  He has reduced his garrison to half rations, to quarter rations,
to very nearly no rations at all!  Carleton sends back secret express.
He can send no help.  He has no more men.  Montgomery tactfully lets
the message pass in.  After siege of forty-five days, Preston
surrenders with all the honors of war, his six hundred and eighty-eight
men marching {301} out, arms reversed, and going aboard Montgomery's
ships to proceed as prisoners up Lake Champlain.

The way is now open to Montreal.  Benedict Arnold, meanwhile, with the
army directed against Quebec, has crossed from the Kennebec to the
Chaudière, paddled across St. Lawrence River, and on the very day that
Montgomery's troops take possession of Montreal, November 13, Arnold's
army has camped on the Plains of Abraham behind Quebec walls, whence he
scatters his foragers, ravaging the countryside far west as Three
Rivers for provisions.  The trials of his canoe voyage from Maine to
the St.  Lawrence at swift pace have been terrific.  More than half his
men have fallen away either from illness or open desertion.  Arnold has
fewer than seven hundred men as he waits for Montgomery at Quebec.


What of Guy Carleton, the English governor, now?  Canada's case seemed
hopeless.  The flower of her army had been taken prisoners, and no help
could come before May.  Desperate circumstances either make or break a
man, prove or undo him.  As reverses closed in on Carleton, like the
wrestlers of old he but took tighter grip of his resolutions.

On November 11, two days before Preston's men surrendered, Carleton,
with two or three military officers disguised as peasants, boarded one
of three armed vessels to go down from Montreal to Quebec.  All the
cannon at Montreal had been dismounted and spiked.  What powder could
not be carried {302} away was buried or thrown into the river.  Amid
funereal silence, shaking hands sadly with the Montreal friends who had
gathered at the wharf to say farewell, the English Governor left
Montreal.  That night the wind failed, and the three vessels lay to
with limp sails.  At Sorel, at Three Rivers, at every hamlet on both
sides of the St.  Lawrence, lay American scouts to capture the English
Governor.  All next day the vessels lay wind-bound.  Desperate for the
fate of Quebec, Carleton embarked on a river barge propelled by sweeps.
Passing Sorel at night Carleton and his disguised officers could see
the camp fires of the American army.  Here oars were laid aside and the
raft steadied down the tide by the rowers paddling with the palms of
their hands.  Three Rivers was found in possession of the Americans,
and a story is told of Carleton, foredone from lack of sleep, dozing in
an eating house or tavern with his head sunk forward upon his hands,
when two or three American scouts broke into the room.  Not a sign did
the English party in peasant disguise give of alarm or uneasiness,
which might have betrayed the Governor.  "Come, come," said one of the
English officers in French, slapping Sir Guy Carleton carelessly on the
back, "we must be going"; and the Governor escaped unsuspected.
November 19, to the inexpressible relief of Quebec Carleton reached the
capital city.

Quebec now had a population of some five thousand.  All able-bodied men
who would not fight were expelled from the city.  What with the small
garrison, some marines who happened to be in port, and the citizens
themselves, eighteen hundred defenders were mustered.  On the walls
were a hundred and fifty heavy cannon, and all the streets leading from
Lower to Upper Town had been barricaded with cannon mounted above.  At
each of the city gates were posted battalions.  Sentries never left the
walls, and the whole army literally slept in its boots.  It will be
remembered that the natural position of Quebec was worth an army in
itself.  On all sides there was access only by steepest climb.  In
front, where the modern visitor ascends from the wharf to Upper Town by
Mountain Street {303} steep as a stair, barricades had been built.  To
the right, where flows St. Charles River past Lower Town, platforms
mounted with cannon guarded approach.  To the rear was the wall behind
which camped Arnold; to the left sheer precipice, above which the
defenders had suspended swinging lanterns that lighted up every
movement on the path below along the St. Lawrence.


Early in December comes Montgomery himself to Quebec, on the very ships
which Carleton had abandoned.  Carleton refuses even the letter
demanding surrender.  Montgomery is {304} warned that forthwith any
messenger sent to the walls will come at peril of being shot as rebel.
Henceforth what communication Montgomery has with the inhabitants must
be by throwing proclamations inside or bribing old habitant women as
carriers,--for the habitants continue to pass in and out of the city
with provisions; and a deserter presently brings word that Montgomery
has declared he will "_eat his Christmas dinner in Quebec or in Hell_!"
Whereupon Carleton retorts, "He may choose his own place, but he shan't
eat it in Quebec."

Montgomery was now in the same position as Wolfe at the great siege.
His troops daily grew more ragged; many were without shoes, and
smallpox was raging in camp.  He could not tempt his foe to come out
and fight; therefore he must assault the foe in its own stronghold.  It
will be remembered, Wolfe had feigned attack to the fore, and made the
real attack to the rear.  Montgomery reversed the process.  He feigned
attack to the rear gates of St. John and St. Louis, and made the real
attack to the fore from the St. Charles and the St. Lawrence.  While a
few soldiers were to create noisy hubbub at St. John and St. Louis
gates from the back of the city, Arnold was to march through Lower Town
from the Charles River side, Montgomery along the narrow cliff below
the Citadel, through Lower Town, to that steep Mountain Street which
tourists to-day ascend directly from the wharves of the St. Lawrence.
On the squares of Upper Town the two armies were to unite and fight
Carleton.  The plan of attack practically encompassed the city from
every side.  Spies had brought rumors to Carleton that the signal for
assault for the American troops was to be the first dark stormy night.
Christmas passed quietly enough without Montgomery carrying out his
threat, and on the night before New Year's all was quiet.  Congress
soldiers had dispersed among the taverns outside the walls, and
Carleton felt so secure he had gone comfortably to bed.  For a month,
shells from the American guns had been whizzing over Upper Town, with
such small damage that citizens had continued to go about as usual.  On
the walls was a constant popping from the sharpshooters of both sides,
and occasionally {305} an English sentry, parading the walls at
imminent risk of being a target, would toss down a cheery "Good morrow,
gentlemen," to a Congress trooper below.  Then, quick as a flash, both
men would lift and fire; but the results were small credit to the aim
of either shooter, for the sentry would duck off the wall untouched,
just as the American dashed for hiding behind barricade or house of
Lower Town.  Some of the Americans wanted to know what were the
lanterns and lookouts which the English had constructed above the
precipice of Cape Diamond.  Some wag of a habitant answered these were
the sign of a wooden horse with hay in front of it, and that the
English general, Carleton, had said he would not surrender the town
till the horse had caught up to the hay.  Skulking riflemen of the
Congress troops had taken refuge in the mansion of Bigot's former
magnificence, the Intendant's Palace, and Carleton had ordered the
cannoneers on his walls to knock the house down.  So fell the house of
Bigot's infamy.

Towards 2 A.M. of December 31 the wind began to blow a hurricane.  The
bright moonlight became obscured by flying clouds, and earth and air
were wrapped in a driving storm of sleet.  Instantly the Congress
troops rallied to their headquarters behind the city.  Montgomery at
quick march swept down the steep cliff of the river to the shore road,
and in the teeth of a raging wind led his men round under the heights
of Cape Diamond to the harbor front.  Heads lowered against the wind,
coonskin caps pulled low over eyes, ash-colored flannel shirts buttoned
tight to necks, gun casings and sacks wrapped loosely round loaded
muskets to keep out the damp, the marchers tramped silently through the
storm.  Overhead was the obscured glare where the lanterns hung out in
a blare of snow above Cape Diamond.  Here rockets were sent up as a
signal to Arnold on St. Charles River.  Then Montgomery's men were
among the houses of Lower Town, noting well that every window had been
barricaded and darkened from cellar to attic.  Somewhere along the
narrow path in front of the town Montgomery knew that barricades had
been built with cannon behind, but he trusted to the storm concealing
his approach till his men could capture them at a rush.  At Près {306}
de Ville, just where the traveler approaching harbor front may to-day
see a tablet erected in memory of the invasion, was a barricade.
Montgomery halted his men.  Scouts returned with word that all was
quiet and in darkness--the English evidently asleep; and uncovering
muskets, the Congress fighters dashed forward at a run.  But it was the
silence that precedes the thunderclap.  The English had known that the
storm was to signal attack, and guessing that the rockets foretokened
the assailants' approach, they had put out all lights behind the
barricade.  Until Montgomery's men were within a few feet of the log,
there was utter quiet; then a voice shrieked out, "Fire!--fire!"
Instantly a flash of flame met the runners like a wall.  Groans and
screams split through the muffling storm.  Montgomery and a dozen
others fell dead.  The rest had broken away in retreat,--a rabble
without a commander,--carrying the wounded.  Behind the barricade was
almost as great confusion among the English, for Quebec's defenders
were made up of boys of fifteen and old men of seventy, and the first
crash of battle had been followed by a panic, when half the guards
would have thrown down their arms if one John Coffin, an expelled
royalist from Boston, had not shouted out that he would throw the first
man who attempted to desert into the river.

Meantime, how had it gone with Arnold?

[Illustration: SIR GUY CARLETON]

An English officer was passing near St. Louis Gate when, sometime after
two o'clock, he noticed rockets go up from the river beyond Cape
Diamond.  He at once sounded the alarm.  Bugles called to arms, drums
rolled, and every bell in the city was set ringing.  In less than ten
minutes every man of Quebec's eighteen hundred was in place.  American
soldiers marching through St. Roch, Lower Town, have described how the
tolling of the bells rolling through the storm smote cold on their
hearts, for they knew their designs had been discovered, and they could
not turn back, for a juncture must be effected with Montgomery.  A
moment later the sham assaults were peppering the rear gates of Quebec,
but Guy Carleton was too crafty a campaigner to be tricked by any sham.
He rightly guessed that the real attack {307} would be made on one of
the two weaker spots leading up from Lower Town.  "Now is the time to
show what stuff you are made of," he called to the soldiers, as he
ordered more detachments to the place whence came crash of heaviest
firing.  This was at Sault-au-Matelot Street, a narrow, steep
thoroughfare, barely twenty feet from side to side.  Up this little
tunnel of a street Arnold had rushed his men, surmounting one barricade
where they exchanged their own wet muskets for the dry guns of the
English deserters, dashing into houses to get possession of windows as
vantage points, over, some accounts say, yet another obstruction, till
his whole army was cooped up in a canyon of a street directly below the
hill front on which had been erected a platform with heavy guns.  It
was a gallant rush, but it was futile, for now Carleton outgeneraled
Arnold.  Guessing from the distance of the shots that the attack to the
rear was sheer sham, the English general rushed his fighters downhill
by another gate to catch Arnold on the rear.  Quebec houses are built
close and cramped.  While these troops were stealing in behind Arnold
to close on him like a trap, it was easy trick for another English
battalion to scramble over house roofs, over back walls, and up the
very stairs of houses where Arnold's troops were guarding the windows.
Then Arnold was carried past his men badly wounded.  "We are sold,"
muttered the Congress troops, "caught like rats in a trap."  Still they
pressed toward in hand to hand scuffle, with shots at such close range
the Boston soldiers were {308} shouting, "Quebec men, do not fire on
your true friends!" with absurd pitching of each other by the scruff of
the neck from the windows.  Daylight only served to make plainer the
desperate plight of the entrapped raiders.  At ten o'clock five hundred
Congress soldiers surrendered.  It must not for one moment be forgotten
that each side was fighting gallantly for what it believed to be right,
and each bore the other the respect due a good fighter and upright foe.
In fact, with the exception of two or three episodes mutually
regretted, it may be said there were fewer bitter thoughts that New
Year's morning than have arisen since from this war.  The captured
Americans had barely been sent to quarters in convents and hospitals
before a Quebec merchant sent them a gift of several hogsheads of
porter.  When the bodies of Montgomery and his fellow-comrades in death
were found under the snowdrifts, they were reverently removed, and
interred with the honors of war just inside St. Louis Gate.

Though the invaders were defeated, Quebec continued to be invested till
spring, the thud of exploding bombs doing little harm except in the
case of one family, during spring, when a shell fell through the roof
to a dining-room table, killing a son where he sat at dinner.  As the
ice cleared from the river in spring, both sides were on the watch for
first aid.  Would Congress send up more soldiers on transports; or
would English frigates be rushed to the aid of Quebec?  The Americans
were now having trouble collecting food from the habitants, for the
French doubted the invaders' success, and Congress paper money would be
worthless to the holders.  One beautiful clear May moonlight night a
vessel was espied between nine and ten at night coming up the river
full sail before the wind.  Was she friend or foe?  Carleton and his
officers gazed anxiously from the citadel.  Guns were fired as signal.
No answer came from the ship.  Again she was hailed, and again; yet she
failed to hang out English colors.  Carleton then signaled he would
sink her, and set the rampart cannon sweeping her bows.  In a second
she was ablaze, a fire ship sent by the enemy loaded with shells and
grenades and bombs that shot off like a fusillade of rockets.  At the
same time a boat was seen rowing from the {309} far side of her with
terrific speed.  Carleton's precaution had prevented the destruction of
the harbor fleet.  Three days later, at six in the morning, the firing
of great guns announced the coming of an English frigate.  At once
every man, woman, and child of Quebec poured down to the harbor front,
half-dressed, mad with joy.  By midday, Guy Carleton had led eight
hundred soldiers out to the Plains of Abraham to give battle against
the Americans; but General Thomas of the Congress army did not wait.
Such swift flight was taken that artillery, stores, tents, uneaten
dinners cooked and on the table, were abandoned to Carleton's men.
General Thomas himself died of smallpox at Sorel.  At Montreal all was
confusion.  The city had been but marking time, pending the swing of
victory at Quebec.  In the spring of 1776 Congress had sent three
commissioners to Montreal to win Canada for the new republic.  One was
the famous Benjamin Franklin, another a prominent Catholic; but the
French Canadian clergy refused to forget the attack of Congress on the
Quebec Act, and remained loyal to England.

[Illustration: BENEDICT ARNOLD]

For almost a year, in desultory fashion, the campaign against Canada
dragged on, Carleton reoccupying and fortifying Montreal, Three Rivers,
St. John's, and Chamby, then pushing up Champlain Lake in October of
1776, with three large vessels and ninety small ones.  Between Valcour
Island and the mainland he caught Benedict Arnold with the Congress
boats on October 11, and succeeded in battering them to pieces before
{310} Arnold could extricate them.  As the boats sank, the American
crews escaped ashore; but the English went no farther south than Crown
Point this year.  If Carleton had failed at Quebec, there can be no
doubt Canada would have been permanently lost to England; for the
following year France openly espoused the cause of Congress, and
proclamations were secretly smuggled all through Canada to be posted on
church doors, calling on Canadians to remain loyal to France.
Curiously enough, it was Washington, the leader of the Americans, who
checkmated this move.  With a wisdom almost prophetic, he foresaw that
if France helped the United States, and then demanded Canada as her
reward, the old border warfare would be renewed with tenfold more
terror.  No longer would it be bushrover pitted against frontiersmen.
It would be France against Congress, and Washington refused to give the
aid of Congress to the scheme of France embroiling America in European
wars.  The story of how Clark, the American, won the Mississippi forts
for Congress is not part of Canada's history, nor are the terrible
border raids of Butler and Brant, the Mohawk, who sided with the
English, and left the Wyoming valley south of the Iroquois Confederacy
a blackened wilderness, and the homes of a thousand settlers smoking
ruins.  It is this last raid which gave the poet Campbell his theme in
"Gertrude of Wyoming."  By the Treaty of Versailles, in 1783, England
acknowledged the independence of the United States, and Canada's area
was shorn of her fairest territory by one fell swath.  Instead of the
Ohio being the southern boundary, the middle line of the Great Lakes
divided Canada from her southern neighbor.  The River Ste. Croix was to
separate Maine from New Brunswick.  The sole explanation of this loss
to Canada was that the American commissioners knew their business and
the value of the ceded territory, and the English commissioners did
not.  It is one of the many conspicuous examples of what loyalty has
cost Canada.  England is to give up the western posts to the United
States, from Miami to Detroit and Michilimackinac and Grand Portage.
In return the United States federal government is to recommend to the
States {311} Governments that all property confiscated from Royalists
during the war be restored.


General Haldimand, a Swiss who has served in the Seven Years' War,
succeeds Carleton as governor in 1778.  The times are troublous.  There
is still a party in favor of Congress.  The great unrest, which ends in
the French Revolution, disturbs habitants' life.  Then that provision
of the Quebec Act, by which legislative councilors were to be nominated
by the crown, works badly.  Councilors, judges, crown attorneys, even
bailiffs are appointed by the colonial office of London, and find it
more to their interests to stay currying favor in London than to attend
to their duties in Canada.  The country is cursed by the evil of absent
officeholders, who draw salaries and appoint incompetent deputies to do
the work.  As for the social unrest that fills the air, Haldimand claps
the malcontents in jail till the storm blows over; but the tricks of
speculators, who have flocked to Canada, give trouble of another sort.
Naturally the ring of English speculators, rather than the impoverished
French, became ascendant in foreign trade, and during the American war
the ring got such complete control of the wheat supply that bread
jumped to famine price.  Just as he had dealt with the malcontents
soldier fashion, so Haldimand now had a law passed forbidding tricks
with the price of wheat.  Like Carleton, {312} Haldimand too came down
hard on the land-jobbers, who tried to jockey poor French peasants out
of their farms for bailiff's fees.  It may be guessed that Haldimand
was not a popular governor with the English clique.  Nevertheless, he
kept sumptuous bachelor quarters at his mansion near Montmorency Falls,
was a prime favorite with the poor and with the soldiers, and sometimes
deigned to take lessons in pickle making and home keeping from the
grand dames of Quebec.  In 1786 Carleton comes back as Lord Dorchester.

Congress had promised to protect the property of those Royalists who
had fought on the losing side in the American Revolution, but for
reasons beyond the control of Congress, that promise could not be
carried out.  It was not Congress but the local governments of each
individual state that controlled property rights.  In vain Congress
recommended the States Governments to restore the property confiscated
from the Royalists.  The States Governments were in a condition of
chaos, packed by jobbers and land-grabbers and the riffraff that always
infest the beginnings of a nation.  Instead of protecting the
Royalists, the States Governments passed laws confiscating more
property and depriving those who had fought for England of even holding
office.  It was easy for the tricksters who had got possession of the
loyalists' lands to create a social ostracism that endangered the very
lives of the beaten Royalists, and there set towards Canada the great
emigration of the United Empire Loyalists.  To Nova Scotia, to New
Brunswick, to Prince Edward Island, to Ontario, they came from Virginia
and Pennsylvania and New York and Massachusetts and Vermont, in
thousands upon thousands.  The story of their sufferings and far
wanderings has never been told and probably never will, for there is
little official record of it; but it can be likened only to the
expulsion of the Acadians multiplied a hundredfold.  To the Maritime
Provinces alone came more than thirty thousand people.  To the eastern
townships of Quebec, to the regions of Kingston and Niagara and Toronto
in Ontario came some twenty thousand more.  It needs no {313} trick of
fancy to call up the scene, and one marvels that neither poet nor
novelist has yet made use of it.  Here were fine old Royalist officers
of New York reduced from opulence to penury, from wealth to such
absolute destitution they had neither clothing nor food, nor money to
pay ship's passage away, now crowded with their families, and such
wrecks of household goods as had escaped raid and fire, on some cheap
government transport or fishing schooner bound from New York Harbor to
Halifax or Fundy Bay.  Of the thirteen thousand people bound for
Halifax there can scarcely be a family that has not lost brothers or
sons in the war.  Family plate, old laces, heirlooms, even the father's
sword in some cases, have long ago been pawned for food.  If one finds,
as one does find all through Nova Scotia, fine old mahogany and walnut
furniture brought across by the Loyalists, it is only because walnut
and mahogany were not valued at the time of the Revolution as they are
to-day.  And instead of welcome at Halifax, the refugees met with
absolute consternation!  What is a town of five thousand people to do
with so many hungry visitants?  They are quartered about in churches,
in barracks, in halls knocked up, till they can be sent to farms.  And
these are not common immigrants coming fresh from toil in the fields of
Europe; they are gently nurtured men and women, representing the
aristocracy and wealth and conservatism of New York.  This explains why
one finds among the prominent families of Nova Scotia the same names as
among the most prominent families of Massachusetts and New York.  To
the officers and heads of families the English government granted from
two thousand to five thousand acres each, and to sons and daughters of
Loyalists two hundred acres each, besides 3,000,000 pounds in cash, as
necessity for it arose.

On the north side of Fundy Bay hardships were even greater, for the
Loyalists landed from their ships on the homeless shores of the
wildwood wilderness.  Rude log cabins of thatch roof and plaster walls
were knocked up, and there began round the log cabin that tiny clearing
which was to expand into the farm.  The coming of the Loyalists really
peopled both New Brunswick {314} and Prince Edward Island: the former
becoming a separate province in 1784, named after the ruling house of
England; the latter named after the Duke of Kent, who was in command of
the garrison at Charlottetown.

More strenuous still was the migration of the United Empire Loyalists
from the south.  Rich old planters of Virginia and Maryland, who had
had their colored servants by the score, now came with their families
in rude tented wagons, fine chippendales jumbled with heavy mahogany
furnishings, up the old Cumberland army road to the Ohio, and across
from the Ohio to the southern townships of Quebec, to the backwoods of
Niagara and Kingston and Toronto and modern Hamilton, and west as far
as what is now known as London.  I have heard descendants of these old
southern Loyalists tell how hopelessly helpless were these planters'
families, used to hundreds of negro servants and now bereft of help in
a backwoods wilderness.  It took but a year or so to wear out the fine
laces and pompous ruffles of their aristocratic clothing, and men and
women alike were reduced to the backwoods costume of coon cap, homespun
garments, and Indian moccasins.  Often one could witness such anomalies
in their log cabins as gilt mirrors and spindly glass cabinets ranged
in the same apartment as stove and cooking utensils.  If the health of
the father failed or the war had left him crippled, there was nothing
for it but for the mother to take the helm; and many a Canadian can
trace lineage back to a United Empire Loyalist woman who planted the
first crop by hand with a hoe and reaped the first crop by hand with a
sickle.  Sometimes the jovial habits of the planter life came with the
Loyalists to Canada, and winter witnessed a furbishing up of old
flounces and laces to celebrate all-night dance in log houses where
partitions were carpets and tapestries hung up as walls.  Sometimes,
too,--at least I have heard descendants of the eastern township people
tell the story,--the jovial habits kept the father tippling and card
playing at the village inn while the lonely mother kept watch and ward
in the cabin of the snow-padded forests.  Of necessity the Loyalists
banded together to {315} help one another.  There were "sugarings off"
in the maple woods every spring for the year's supply of homemade
sugar,--glorious nights and days in the spring forests with the sap
trickling from the trees to the scooped-out troughs; with the grown-ups
working over the huge kettle where the molasses was being boiled to
sugar; with the young of heart, big and little, gathering round the
huge bonfires at night in the woods for the sport of a taffy pull, with
molasses dripping on sticks and huge wooden spoons taken from the pot.
There were threshings when the neighbors gathered together to help one
another beat out their grain from the straw with a flail.  There were
"harvest homes" and "quilting bees" and "loggings" and "barn raisings."
Clothes were homemade.  Sugar was homemade.  Soap was homemade.  And
for years and years the only tea known was made from steeping dry
leaves gathered in the woods; the only coffee made from burnt peas
ground up.  Such were the United Empire Loyalists, whose lives some
unheralded poet will yet sing,--not an unfit stock for a nation's
empire builders.

At the same time that the Loyalists came to Canada, came Joseph
Brant,--Thayendanegea, the Mohawk,--with the remnant of his tribe, who
had fought for the English.  To them the government granted some
700,000 acres in Ontario.

[Illustration: JOSEPH BRANT]

{316} It is not surprising that the United Empire Loyalists objected to
living under the French laws of the Quebec Act.  They had fought for
England against Congress, but they wanted representative government,
and the Constitutional Act was passed in 1791 dividing the country into
Upper and Lower Canada, each to have its own parliament consisting of a
governor, a legislative council appointed by the crown, and an assembly
elected by the people.  There was to be no religious test.  Naturally
old French laws would prevail in Quebec, English laws in Ontario or
Upper Canada.  By this act, too, land known as the Clergy Reserves was
set apart for the Protestant Church.  The first parliament in Quebec
met in the bishop's palace in December of 1792; the first parliament of
Ontario in Newark or Niagara in September of the same year, the most of
the newly elected members coming by canoe and dugout, and, as the
Indian summer of that autumn proved hot, holding many of the sessions
in shirt sleeves out under the trees, Lieutenant Governor Simcoe
reporting that the electors seem to have favored "men of the lower
order, who kept but one table and ate with their servants."  The
earliest sessions of the Ontario House were marked by acts to remove
the capital from the boundary across to Toronto, and to legalize
marriages by Protestant clergymen other than of the English church.  It
is amusing to read how Governor Simcoe regarded the marriage bill as an
opening of the flood gates to {317} republicanism; but for all their
shirt sleeves, the legislators enjoyed themselves and danced till
morning in Navy Hall, the Governor's residence, "Mad Tom Talbot," the
Governor's aid-de-camp, losing his heart to the fine eyes of Brant's
Indian niece, daughter of Sir William Johnson of the old Lake George


Down at Quebec things were managed with more pomp, and no social event
was complete without the presence of the Duke of Kent, military
commandant, now living in Haldimand's old house at Montmorency.  Nova
Scotia had held parliaments since 1758, when Halifax elected her first

Besides the United Empire Loyalists, other settlers were coming to
Canada.  The Earl of Selkirk, a patriotic young Scotch nobleman, had
arranged for the removal of evicted Highlanders to Prince Edward Island
in 1803 and to Baldoon on Lake St. Clair.  Then "Mad Tom Talbot,"
Governor Simcoe's aid, descendant of the Talbots of Castle Malahide and
boon comrade of the young soldier who became the Duke of Wellington,
becomes so enamored of wilderness life that he gives up his career in
Europe, gains grant of lands between London and Port Dover, and lays
foundations of settlements in western Ontario, spite of the fact he
remains a bachelor.  The man who had danced at royalty's balls and
drunk deep of pleasure at the beck of princes now lived in a log house
of three rooms, laughed at difficulties, "baked his own bread, milked
his own cows, made his own butter, washed his own clothes, ironed his
own linen," and taught colonists who bought his lands "how to do
without the rotten refuse of Manchester warehouses,"--the term he
applied to the broadcloth of the newcomer.

Under the French régime, Canada had consisted of a string of fur posts
isolated in a wilderness.  It will be noticed that it now consisted of
five distinct provinces of nation builders.



FROM 1812 TO 1820

Hearne surrenders--Cook on the west coast--Vancouver on
Pacific--Discovery of Mackenzie River--Across to the Pacific--A smash
in bad rapids--Down Fraser River--Cause of war--The Chesapeake
outrage--War declared--Hull surrenders at Detroit--The fight round
Niagara--Soldiers exchange jokes across gorge--The traverse at
Queenston--The surrender at Queenston--1813 A dark year--Raid on
Ogdensburg--Attack on Toronto--Toronto burned--Vincent's soldiers at
Burlington Bay--Ill hap of all the generals--Laura Secord's
heroism--Campaign in the west--Moraviantown Disaster--Chrysler's
farm--De Salaberry's buglers--The charge at Chippewa--Final action at
Lundy's Lane--Great heroism on both sides--Assault at Fort Erie--End of
futile war

While Canada waged war for her national existence against her border
neighbors to the south, as in the days of the bushrovers' raids of old,
afar in the west, in the burnt-wood, iron-rock region of Lake Superior,
on the lonely wind-swept prairies, at the foothills where each night's
sunset etched the long shadows of the mountain peaks in somber replica
across the plains, in the forested solitude of the tumultuous Rockies
was the ragged vanguard of empire blazing a path through the
wilderness, voyageur and burnt-wood runner, trapper, and explorer,
pushing across the hinterlands of earth's ends from prairie to
mountains, and mountains to sea.

It was but as a side clap of the great American Revolution that the
last French cannon were pointed against the English forts on Hudson
Bay.  When France sided with the American colonies a fleet of French
frigates was dispatched under the great Admiral La Pérouse against the
fur posts of the English Company.  One sleepy August afternoon in 1782,
when Samuel Hearne, governor of Fort Churchill, was sorting furs in the
courtyard, gates wide open, cannon unloaded, guards dispersed, the fort
was electrified by the sudden apparition of three men-of-war, sails
full blown, sides bristling with cannon, plowing over the waves
straight for the harbor gate.  French colors fluttered from the
masthead.  Sails rattled down.  Anchors were cast, and in a few minutes
small boats were out sounding the channel for position to attack the
fort.  Hearne had barely forty men, and the most of them were
decrepits, unfit for the hunting field.  As sunset merged into the long
white light of northern midnight, four hundred French mariners landed
on the sands outside Churchill.  {319} Hearne had no alternative.  He
surrendered without a blow.  The fort was looted of furs, the Indians
driven out, and a futile attempt made to blow up the massive walls.
Hearne and the other officers were carried off captives.  Matonabbee,
the famous Indian guide, came back from the hunt to find the wooden
structures of Churchill in flame.  He had thought the English were
invulnerable, and his pagan pride could not brook the shame of such
ignominious defeat.  Withdrawing outside the shattered walls,
Matonabbee blew his brains out.  A few days later Port Nelson, to the
south, had suffered like fate.  The English officers were released by
La Pérouse on reaching Europe.  As for the fur company servants, they
waited only till the French sails had disappeared over the sea.  Then
they came from hiding and rebuilt the burnt forts.  Such was the last
act in the great drama of contest between France and England for
supremacy in the north.

For two hundred years explorers had been trying to find a northern
passage between Europe and Asia by way of America, from east to west.
Now that Canada has fallen into English hands; now, too, that the
Russian sea-otter hunters are coasting down the west side of America
towards that region which Drake discovered long ago in California,
England suddenly awakens to a passion for discovery of that mythical
Northwest Passage.  Instead of seeking from east to west she sought
from west to east, and sent her navigator round the world to search for
opening along the west coast of America.  To carry out the exploration
there was selected as commander that young officer, James Cook, who
helped to sound the St. Lawrence for Wolfe, and had since been cruising
the South Seas.  On his ships, the _Resolution_ and the _Discovery_,
was a young man whose name was to become a household word in America,
Vancouver, a midshipman.

March of 1778 the _Resolution_ and _Discovery_ come rolling over the
long swell of the sheeny Pacific towards Drake's land of New Albion,
California.  Suddenly, one morning, the dim sky line resolved into the
clear-cut edges of high land, but by night such a roaring hurricane had
burst on the ships as drove them {320} far out from land, too far to
see the opening of Juan de Fuca, leading in from Vancouver Island,
though Cook called the cape there "Flattery," because he had hoped for
an opening and been deluded.  Clearer weather found Cook abreast a
coast of sheer mountains with snowy summits jagging through the clouds
in tent peaks.  A narrow entrance opened into a two-horned cove.  Small
boats towed the ships in amid a flotilla of Indian dugouts whose
occupants chanted weird welcome to the echo of the surrounding hills.
Women and children were in the canoes.  That signified peace.  The
ships were moored to trees, and the white men went ashore in that
harbor to become famous as the rendezvous of Pacific fur traders,
Nootka Sound, on the sea side of Vancouver Island.

[Illustration: CAPTAIN COOK]

Presently the waters were literally swarming with Indian canoes, and in
a few days Cook's crews had received thousands of dollars' worth of
sea-otter skins for such worthless baubles as tin mirrors and brass
rings and bits of red calico.  This was the beginning of the fur trade
in sea otter with Americans and English.  Some of the naked savages
were observed wearing metal ornaments of European make.  Cook did not
think of the Russian fur traders to the north, but easily persuaded
himself these objects had come from the English fur traders of Hudson
Bay, and so inferred there _must_ be a Northeast Passage.  By April,
Cook's ships were once more afloat, {321} gliding among the sylvan
channels of countless wooded islands up past Sitka harbor, where the
Russians later built their fort, round westward beneath the towering
opal dome of Mount St. Elias, which Bering had named, to the waters
bordering Alaska; but, as the world knows, though the ships penetrated
up the channels of many roily waters, they found no open passage.  Cook
comes down to the Sandwich Islands, New Year of 1779.  There the vices
of his white crew arouse the enmity of the pagan savages.  In a riot
over the theft of a rowboat, Cook and a few men are surrounded by an
enraged mob.  By some mistake the white sailors rowing out from shore
fire on the mob surrounding Cook.  Instantly a dagger rips under Cook's
shoulder blade.  In another second Cook and his men are literally
hacked to pieces.  All night the conch shells of the savages blow their
war challenge through the darkness and the signal fires dance on the
mountains.  By dint of persuasion and threats the white men compel the
natives to restore the mangled remains of the commander.  Sunday,
February 21, amid a silence as of death over the waters, the body of
the dead explorer is committed to the deep.

[Illustration: FORT CHURCHILL, AS IT WAS IN 1777]


The chance discovery of the sea-otter trade by Cook's crew at Nootka
brings hosts of English and American adventurers to the Pacific Coast
of Canada.  There is Meares, the English officer from China, who builds
a rabbit hutch of a barracks at Nootka and almost involves England and
Spain in war because the Spaniards, having discovered this region
before Cook, knock the log barracks into kindling wood and forcibly
seize an English trading ship.  There is Robert Gray, the Boston
trader, who pushes the prow of his little ship, _Columbia_, up a
spacious harbor south of Juan de Fuca in May of 1792 and discovers
Columbia River, so giving the United States flag prior claim here.
There is George Vancouver, the English commander, sent out by his
government in 1791-1793 to receive Nootka formally back from the
Spaniards of California and to explore every inlet from Vancouver
Island to Alaska.  As luck would have it, Vancouver, the Englishman,
and Gray, the American, are both hovering off {322} the mouth of the
Columbia in April of 1792, but a gale drives the ships offshore, though
turgid water plainly indicates the mouth of a great river somewhere
near.  Vancouver goes on up north.  Gray, the American, comes back, and
so Vancouver misses discovering the one great river that remains
unmapped in America.  Up Puget Sound, named after his lieutenant, up
Fuca Straits, round Vancouver Island, past all those inlets like seas
on the mainland of British Columbia, coasts Vancouver, rounding south
again to Nootka in August.  In Nootka lie the Spanish frigates from
California, bristling with cannon, the red and yellow flag blowing to
the wind above the palisaded fort.  In solemn parade, with Maquinna,
the Nootka chief, clad in a state of nature, as guest of the festive
board, Don Quadra, the Spanish officer, dines and wines Vancouver; but
when it comes to business, that is another matter!  Vancouver
understands that Spain is to surrender _all_ sovereignty north of San
Francisco.  Don Quadra, with pompous bow, maintains that the
international agreement was to surrender rights only north of Juan de
Fuca, leaving the rest of the northwest coast free to all nations for
trade.  Incidentally, it may be mentioned, Don Quadra was right, but
the two commanders agree to send home to their respective governments
for {323} instructions.  Meanwhile Robert Gray, the American, comes
rolling into port with news he has discovered Columbia River.
Vancouver is skeptical and chagrined.  Having failed to discover the
river, he goes down coast to explore it.  It may be added, he sends his
men higher up the river than Gray has gone, and has England's flag of
possession as solemnly planted as though Robert Gray had never entered
Columbia's waters.  The next two years Vancouver spends exploring every
nook and inlet from Columbia River to Lynn Canal.  Once and for all and
forever he disproves the myth of a Northeast Passage.  His work was
negative, but it established English rights where America's claims
ceased and Russia's began, namely between Columbia River and Sitka, or
in what is now known as British Columbia.


[Illustration: NOOTKA SOUND  (From an engraving in Vancouver's journal)]

As the beaver had lured French bushrovers from the St. Lawrence to the
Rockies, so the sea otter led the way to the exploration of the Pacific
Coast.  Artist's brush and novelist's pen have drawn all the romance
and the glamour and the adventure of the beaver hunter's life, but the
sea-otter hunter's life is {324} almost an untold tale.  Pacific Coast
Indians were employed by the white traders for this wildest of hunting.
The sea otter is like neither otter nor beaver, though possessing
habits akin to both.  In size, when full-grown, it is about the length
of a man.  Its pelt has the ebony shimmer of seal tipped with silver.
Cradled on the waves, sleeping on their backs in the sea, playful as
kittens, the sea otters only come ashore when driven by fierce gales;
but they must come above to breathe, for the wave wash of storm would
smother them.  Their favorite sleeping grounds used to be the kelp beds
of the Alaskan Islands.  Storm or calm, to the kelp beds rode the
Indian hunters in their boats of oiled skin light as paper.  If heavy
surf ran, concealing sight and sound, the hunters stood along shore
shouting through the surf and waiting for the wave wash to carry in the
dead body; if the sea were calm, the hunters circled in bands of twenty
or thirty, spearing the sea otter as it came up to breathe; but the
best hunting was when hurricane gales churned sea and air to spray.
Then the sea otter came to the kelp beds in herds, and through the
storm over the wave-dashed reefs, like very spirits of the storm
incarnate, rushed the hunters, spear in hand.  It is not surprising
that the sea-otter hunters perished by tens of thousands every year, or
that the sea otter dwindled from a yield of 100,000 a year to a paltry
200 of the present day.

Meanwhile Nor'west traders from Montreal and Quebec, English traders
from Hudson Bay, have gone up the Saskatchewan far as the Athabasca and
the Rockies.  What lies beyond?  Whither runs this great river from
Athabasca Lake?  Whence comes the great river from the mountains?  Will
the river that flows north or the river that comes from the west,
either of them lead to the Pacific Coast, where Cook's crews found
wealth of sea otter?  The lure of the Unknown is the lure of the siren.
First you possess it, then it possesses you!  Cooped up in his fort on
Lake Athabasca, Alexander MacKenzie, the Nor'wester, begins wondering
about those rivers, but you can't ask business men to bank on the
Unknown, to write blank checks for profits on what {325} you may not
find.  And the Nor'westers were all stern business men.  For every
penny's outlay they exacted from their wintering partners and clerks
not ten but a hundredfold.  And Alexander MacKenzie received no
encouragement from his company to explore these unknown rivers.  The
project got possession of his mind.  Sometimes he would pace the little
log barracks of Fort Chippewyan from sunset to day dawn, trying to work
out a way to explore those rivers; or, sitting before the huge hearth
place, he would dream and dream till, as he wrote his cousin Roderick,
"I did not know what I was doing or where I was."  Finally he induced
his cousin to take charge of the fort for a summer.  Then, assuming all
risk and outlay, he set out on his own responsibility June 3, 1789, to
follow the Great River down to the Arctic Ocean.  "English Chief," who
often went down to Hudson Bay for the rival company, went as
MacKenzie's guide, and there were also in the canoes two or three white
men, some Indians as paddlers, and squaws to cook and make moccasins.

[Illustration: FORT CHIPPEWYAN, ATHABASCA LAKE  (From a recent

{326} The canoes passed Peace River pouring down from the mountains;
then six dangerous rapids, where many a Nor'west voyageur had perished,
one of MacKenzie's canoes going smash over the falls with a squaw, who
swam ashore; then rampart shores came, broader and higher than the St.
Lawrence or the Hudson, the boats skimming ahead with blankets hoisted
for sails through foggy days and nights of driving rain.  Cramped and
rain-soaked, bailing water from the canoes with huge sponges, the
Indians began to whine that the way was "hard, white man, hard."  Then
the river lost itself in a huge lagoon, Slave Lake, named after
defeated Indians who had taken refuge here; and the question was, which
way to go through the fog across the marshy lake!  Poking through
rushes high as a man, MacKenzie found a current, and, hoisting a sail
on his fishing pole, raced out to the river again on a hissing tide.
Here lived the Dog Rib Indians, and they frightened MacKenzie's men
cold with grewsome tales of horrors ahead, of terrible waterfalls, of a
land of famine and hostile tribes.  The effect was instant.  MacKenzie
could not obtain a guide till "English Chief" hoisted a Slave Lake
Indian into the canoe on a paddle handle.  Though MacKenzie himself
nightly slept with the vermin-infested guide to prevent desertion, the
fellow escaped one night during the confusion of a thunder-storm.
Again a chance hunter was forcibly put into the canoe as guide; and the
explorer pushed on for another month.  North of Bear Lake, Indian
warriors were seen flourishing weapons along shore, and MacKenzie's men
began to remark that the land was barren of game.  If they became
winter bound, they would perish.  MacKenzie promised his men if he did
not find the sea within seven days, he would turn back.  Suddenly the
men lost track of day, for they had come to the region of long light.
The river had widened to swamp lands.  Between the 13th and 14th of
July the men asleep on the sand were awakened by a flood of water
lapping in on their baggage.  What did it mean?  For a minute they did
not realize.  Then they knew.  It was the tide.  They had found the
sea.  Hilarious as boys, they jumped from bed to man their canoes and
chase whales.

{327} September 12, all sails up before a driving wind, the canoes
raced across Athabasca Lake to the fort landing, Roderick, his nephew,
shouting a welcome.  MacKenzie had laid one of the two ghosts that
haunted his peace.  Now he must lay the other.  Where did Peace River
come from?  His achievement on MacKenzie River had been greeted by the
other Nor'west partners with a snub.  Nevertheless MacKenzie asked for
leave of absence that he might go to London and study the taking of
astronomic observations in order to explore that other river flowing
from the mountains; and in London, though poor and obscure, he heard
all about Cook's voyages and Meare's brush with the Spaniards at
Nootka, and plans for Captain Vancouver to make a final exploration of
the Pacific Coast.  Hurrying back to the Nor'wester's fort on Peace
River, he was beset by the blue devils of despondency.  What if Peace
River did _not_ lead to the Pacific Ocean at all?  What if he were
behind some other discoverer?  What if the venture proved a fool's trip
leading to a blind nowhere?  He was only a junior partner and could ill
afford either money or time for failure.


Nevertheless, when the furs have been dispatched for Montreal,
MacKenzie launches out on May 9 of 1793 with a thirty-foot birch canoe,
six voyageurs, and Alexander Mackay as lieutenant, for the hinterland
beyond the Rockies.  This time the going was _against_ stream,--hard
paddling, but safer than with a {328} swift current in a river with
dangerous rapids.  Ten days later the river has become a canyon of
tumbling cascades, the mountains sheer wall on each side, with snowy
peaks jagging up through the clouds.  To portage baggage up such cliffs
was impossible.  Yet it was equally impossible to go on up the canyon,
and MacKenzie's men became so terrified they refused to land.  Jumping
to foothold on the wall, a towrope in one hand, an ax in the other,
MacKenzie cut steps in the cliff, then signaled above the roar of the
rapids for the men to follow.  They stripped themselves to swim if they
missed footing, and obeyed, trembling in every limb.  The towrope was
warped round trees and the loaded canoe tracked up the cascade.  At the
end of that portage the men flatly refused to go on.  MacKenzie ignored
the mutiny and ordered the best of provisions spread for a feast.
While the crew rested, he climbed the face of a rocky cliff to
reconnoiter.  As far as eye could see were cataracts walled by mighty
precipices.  The canoe could not be tracked up such waters.  Mackay,
who had gone prospecting a portage, reported that it would be nine
miles over the mountain.  MacKenzie did not tell his men what was ahead
of them, but he led the way up the steep mountain, cutting trees to
form an outer railing, and up this trail the canoe was hauled, towline
round trees, the men swearing and sweating and blowing like whales.
Three miles was the record that day, the voyageurs throwing themselves
down to sleep at five in the afternoon, wrapped in their blanket coats
lying close to the glacier edges.  Three days it took to cross this
mountain, and the end of the third day found them at the foot of
another mountain.  Here the river forked.  MacKenzie followed the south
branch, or what is now known as the Parsnip.  Often at night the men
would be startled by rocketing echoes like musketry firing, and they
would spring to their feet to keep guard with backs to trees till
morning; but presently they learned the cause of the pistol-shot
reports.  They were now on the Uplands among the eternal snows.  The
sharp splittings, the far boomings, the dull breaking thuds were frost
cornices of overhanging snow crashing down in avalanches that swept the
mountain slopes clear of forests.


[Illustration: CAUSE OF A PORTAGE]

A short portage from the Parsnip over a low ridge to a lake, and the
canoe is launched on a stream flowing on the far side of the Divide,
Bad River, a branch of the Fraser, though MacKenzie mistakes it for an
upper tributary of the great river discovered by Gray, the Columbia.
Then, before they realize it, comes the danger of going _with_ the
current on a river with rapids.  The stream sweeps to a torrent, mad
and unbridled.  The canoe is as a chip in a maelstrom, the precipices
racing past in a blur, the Indians hanging frantically to the gunnels,
bawling aloud in fear, the terrified voyageurs reaching, . . .
grasping, . . . snatching at trees overhanging from the banks.  The
next instant a rock has banged through bottom, tearing away the stern.
The canoe reels in a swirl.  Bang goes a rock through the bow.  The
birch bark flattens like a shingle.  Another swirl, and, to the
amazement of all, instead of the death that had seemed impending,
smashed canoe, baggage, and voyageurs are dumped on the shallows of a
sandy reach.  One can guess the gasp of relief that went up.  Nobody
uttered a word for some {330} time.  One voyageur, who had grasped at a
branch and been hoisted bodily from the canoe, now came limping to the
disconsolate group, and had stumbled with lighted pipe in teeth across
the powder that had been spread out to dry, when a terrific yell of
warning brought him to his senses, and relieved the tension.  MacKenzie
spread out a treat for the men and sent them to gather bark for a fresh
canoe.  Other adventures on Bad River need not be given.  This one was
typical.  The record was but two miles a day; and now there was no
turning back.  The difficulties behind were as great as any that could
be before.  June 15 Bad River led them westward into the Fraser, but
somewhere in the canyon between modern Quesnel and Alexandria the way
became impassable.  Besides, the river was leading too far south.
MacKenzie struck up Blackwater River to the west.  _Caching_ canoe and
provisions on July 4, he marched overland.  The Pacific was reached on
July 22, 1793, near Bella Coola.  By September, after perils too
numerous to be told, MacKenzie was back at his fur post on Peace River.
As his discoveries on this trip blazed the way to new hunting ground
for his company, they brought both honor and wealth to MacKenzie.  He
was knighted by the English King for his explorations, and he retired
to an estate in Scotland, where he died about 1820.

Meanwhile, Napoleon has sold Louisiana to the United States.  The
American explorers, Lewis and Clark, have crossed from the Missouri to
the Columbia; and now John Jacob Astor, the great fur merchant of New
York, in 1811 sends his fur traders overland to build a fort at the
mouth of Columbia River.  The Northwest Company in frantic haste
dispatches explorers to follow up MacKenzie's work and take possession
of the Pacific fur trade before Astor's men can reach the field.  It
becomes a race for the Pacific.

[Illustration: SIMON FRASER]

Simon Fraser is sent in 1806 to build posts west of the Rockies in New
Caledonia, and to follow that unknown river which MacKenzie mistook for
the Columbia, on down to the sea.  Two years he passed building the
posts, that exist to this {331} day as Fraser planned them: Fort
MacLeod at the head of Parsnip River, on a little lake set like an
emerald among the mountains; Fort St. James on Stuart Lake, a reach of
sheeny green waters like the Trossachs, dotted with islands and
ensconced in mountains; Fraser Fort on another lake southward; Fort St.
George on the main Fraser River.  Then, in May of 1808, with four
canoes Fraser descends the river named after him, accompanied by Stuart
and Quesnel and nineteen voyageurs.  This was the river where the
rapids had turned MacKenzie back, canyon after canyon tumultuous with
the black whirlpools and roaring like a tempest.  Before essaying the
worst runs of the cascades Fraser ordered a canoe lightened at the prow
and manned by the five best voyageurs.  It shot down the current like a
stone from a catapult.  "She flew from one danger to another," relates
Fraser, who was watching the canoe from the bank, "till the current
drove her on a rock.  The men disembarked, and we had to plunge our
daggers into the bank to keep from sliding into the river as we went
down to their aid, our lives hanging on a thread."  Like MacKenzie,
Fraser was compelled to abandon canoes.  Each with a pack of eighty
pounds, the voyageurs set out on foot down that steep gorge where the
traveler to-day can see the trail along the side of the precipice like
basket work between Lilloet and Thompson River.  In Fraser's day was no
{332} trail, only here and there bridges of trembling twig ladders
across chasms; and over these swinging footholds the marchers had to
carry their packs, the river rolling below, deep and ominous and
treacherous.  At Spuzzum the river turned from the south straight west.
Fraser knew it was not the Columbia.  His men named it after himself.
Forty days was Fraser going from St. George to tide water.  Early in
August he was back at his fur posts of New Caledonia.

[Illustration: ASTORIA IN 1813]

Yet another explorer did the Nor'westers send to take possession of the
region beyond the mountains.  David Thompson had been surveying the
bounds between the United States and what is now Manitoba, when he was
ordered to explore the Rockies in the region of the modern Banff.  Up
on Canoe River, Thompson and his men build canoes to descend the
Columbia.  Following the Big Bend, they go down the rolling milky tide
past Upper and Lower Arrow Lakes, a region of mountains sheer on each
side as walls, with wisps of mist marking the cloud line.  Then a
circular sweep westward through what is now Washington, pausing at
Snake River to erect formal claim of possession for England, then a
riffle on the current, a {333} smell of the sea, and at 1 P.M. on July
15, 1811, Thompson glides within view of a little raw new fort,
Astoria.  In the race to the Pacific the Americans have gained the
ground at the mouth of the Columbia just two months before Thompson
came.  In Astor's fort Thompson finds old friends of the Northwest
Company hired over by Astor.


After war has broken out in open flame it is easy to ascribe the cause
to this, that, or the other act, which put the match to the
combustibles; but the real reason usually lies far behind the one act
of explosion, in an accumulation of ill feeling that provided the

So it was in the fratricidal war of 1812 between Canada and the United
States.  The war was criminal folly, as useless as it was unnecessary.
What caused it?  What accumulated the ill feeling lying ready like
combustibles for the match?  Let us see.

The United Empire Loyalists have, by 1812, increased to some 100,000 of
Canada's population, cherishing bitter memories of ruin and
confiscation and persecution because Congress failed to carry out the
pledge guaranteeing protection to the losing side in the Revolution.
Then, because Congress failed to carry out _her_ guarantee, England
delayed turning over the western fur posts to the United States for
almost ten years; and whether true or false, the suspicion became an
open charge that the hostility of the Indians to American frontiersmen
was fomented by the British fur trader.

Here, then, was cause for rankling anger on both sides, and the
bitterness was unwittingly increased by England's policy.  It was hard
for the mother country to realize that the raw new nation of the United
States, child of her very flesh and blood, kindred in thought and
speech, was a power to be reckoned with, on even ground, looking on the
level, eye to eye; and not just a bumptious, underling nation, like a
boy at the hobbledehoy age, to be hectored and chaffed and bullied and
badgered and licked into shape, as a sort of protectorate appended to
English interests.

I once asked an Englishman why the English press was so virulently
hostile to one of the most brilliant of her rising men.

"Oh," he answered, "you must be English to understand that.  We never
think it hurts a boy to be well ragged when he 's at school."

Something of that spirit was in England's attitude to the new nation of
the United States.  England was hard pressed in life-and-death struggle
with Napoleon.  To recruit both army and navy, conscription was rigidly
and ruthlessly enforced.  Yet more!  England claimed the right to
impress British-born subjects in foreign ports, to seize deserters in
either foreign ports or on foreign ships, and, most obnoxious of all,
to search neutral vessels on the ocean highway for deserters from the
British flag.  It was an era of great brutality in military discipline.
Desertions were frequent.  Also thousands of immigrants were flocking
to the new nation of the United States and taking out naturalization
papers.  England ignored these naturalization papers when taken out by

Let us see how the thing worked out.  A passenger vessel is coming up
New York harbor.  An English frigate with cannon pointed swings across
the course, signals the American vessel on American waters to slow up,
sends a young lieutenant with some marines across to the American
vessel, searches her from stem to stern, or compels the American
captain to read the roster of the crew, forcibly seizes half a dozen of
the American crew as British deserters, and departs, leaving the
Americans gasping with wonder whether they are a free nation or a tail
to the kite of English designs.  It need not be explained that the
offense was often aggravated by the swaggering insolence of the young
officers.  They considered the fury of the unprepared American crew a
prime joke.  In vain the government at Washington complained to the
government at Westminster.  England pigeonholed the complaint and went
serenely on her way, searching American vessels from Canada to Brazil.

Or an English vessel has come to Hampton Roads to wood and water.  An
English officer thinks he recognizes among the {335} American crews men
who have deserted from English vessels.  Three men defy arrest and show
their naturalization papers.  High words follow, broken heads and
broken canes, and the English crew are glad to escape the mob by rowing
out to their own vessel.

Is it surprising that the ill feeling on both sides accumulated till
there lacked only the match to cause an explosion?  The explosion came
in 1807.  H. M. S. _Leopard_, cruising off Norfolk in June, encounters
the United States ship _Chesapeake_.  At 3 P.M. the English ship edges
down on the American, loaded to the water line with lumber, and signals
a messenger will be sent across.  The young English lieutenant going
aboard the _Chesapeake_ shows written orders from Admiral Berkeley of
Halifax, commanding a search of the _Chesapeake_ for six deserters.  He
is very courteous and pleasant about the disagreeable business: the
orders are explicit; he must obey his admiral.  The American commander
is equally courteous.  He regrets that he must refuse to obey an
English admiral's orders, but his own government has given _most_
explicit orders that American vessels must _not_ be searched.  The
young Englishman returns with serious face.  The ships were within
pistol shot of each other, the men on the English decks all at their
guns, the Americans off guard, lounging on the lumber piles.  Quick as
flash a cannon shot rips across the _Chesapeake's_ bows, followed by a
broadside, and another, and yet another, that riddle the American decks
to kindling wood before the astonished officers can collect their
senses.  Six seamen are dead and twenty-three wounded when the
_Chesapeake_ strikes her colors to surrender; but the _Leopard_ does
not want a captive.  She sends her lieutenant back, who musters the
four hundred American seamen, picks out four men as British deserters,
learns that another deserter has been killed and a sixth has jumped
overboard rather than be retaken, takes his prisoners back to the
_Leopard_, which proceeds to Halifax, where they are tried by
court-martial and shot.

It isn't exactly surprising that the episode literally set the United
States on fire with rage, and that the American President {336} at once
ordered all American ports closed to British war vessels.  The quarrel
dragged on between the two governments for five years.  England saw at
once that she had gone too far and violated international law.  She
repudiated Admiral Berkeley's order, offered to apologize and pension
the heirs of the victims; but _as she would not repudiate either the
right of impressment or the right of search_, the American government
refused to receive the apology.

CANADA, 1807-1811]

Other causes fanned the flame of war.  The United States was now almost
the only nation neutral in Napoleon's wars.  To cripple English
commerce, Napoleon forbids neutral nations trading at English ports.
By way of retaliation England forbids neutral nations trading with
French ports; and the United States strikes back by closing American
ports to both nations.  It means blue ruin to American trade, but the
United States cannot permit herself to be ground between the upper and
nether millstones of two hostile European powers.  Then, sharp as a
gamester playing his trump card, Napoleon revokes his embargo in 1810,
which leaves England the offender against the United States.  Then
Governor Craig of Canada commits an error that must have delighted the
heart of Napoleon, who always profited by his enemy's blunders.  Well
meaning, but {337} fatally ill and easily alarmed, Craig sends one John
Henry from Montreal in 1809 as spy to the United States for the double
purpose of sounding public opinion on the subject of war, and of
putting any Federalists in favor of withdrawing from the Union in touch
with British authorities.  Craig goes home to England to die.  Henry
fails to collect reward for his ignoble services, turns traitor, and
sells the entire correspondence to the war party in the United States
for $10,000.  That spy business adds fuel to fire.  Then there are
other quarrels.  A deserter from the American army is found teaching
school near Cornwall in Canada.  He is driven out of the little
backwoods schoolhouse, pricked across the field with bayonets, out of
the children's view, and shot on Canadian soil by American soldiers, an
outrage almost the same in spirit as the British crew's outrage on the
_Chesapeake_.  Also, in spite of apologies, the war ships clash again.
The English sloop _Little Belt_ is cruising off Cape Henry in May of
1811, looking for a French privateer, when a sail appears over the sea.
The _Little Belt_ pursues till she sights the commodore's blue flag of
the United States frigate _President_, then she turns about; but by
this time the _President_ has turned the tables on the little sloop,
and is pursuing to find out what the former's conduct meant.  Darkness
settles over the two ships beating about the wind.

"What sloop is that?" shouts an officer through a speaking trumpet from
the American's decks.

"What ship is _that_?" bawls back a voice through the darkness from the
little Englander.

Then, before any one can tell who fired first (in fact, each accuses
the other of firing first), the cannon are pouring hot shot into each
other's hulls till thirty men have fallen on the decks of the _Little
Belt_.  Apologies follow, of course, and explanations; but that does
not remedy the ill.  In fact, when nations and people want to quarrel,
they can always find a cause.  War is declared in June of 1812 by
Congress.  It is war against England; but that means war against
Canada, though there are not forty-five hundred soldiers from Halifax
to Lake Huron.  As for {338} the American forces, they muster an army
of some one hundred and fifty thousand; but their generals complain
they are "an untrained mob"; and events justified the complaints.

There is nothing for Canada to do but stand up to the war of England's
making and fight for hearth and home.  Canada on the defensive, there
is nothing for the States to do but invade; and the American generals
don't relish the task with their "untrained mob."

[Illustration: WILLIAM HULL]

Upper Canada or Ontario has not four hundred soldiers from Kingston to
Detroit River; but Major General Isaac Brock calls for volunteers.  The
clang of arms, of drill, of target practice, resounds in every hamlet
through Canada.  At Kingston, at Toronto, at Fort George (Niagara), at
Erie where Niagara River comes from the lake, at Amherstburg, southeast
of Detroit, are stationed garrisons to repel invasion, with hastily
erected cannon and mortar commanding approach from the American side.
And invasion comes soon enough.  The declaration of war became known in
Canada about the 20th of June.  By July 3 General Hull of Michigan is
at Detroit with two thousand five hundred men preparing to sweep
western Ontario.  July 3 an English schooner captures Hull's provision
boat coming up Detroit River, but Hull crosses with his army on July 12
to Sandwich, opposite Detroit, and issues proclamation calling on the
people to throw off the yoke of English rule.  How such an invitation
fell on United Empire Loyalist ears may be guessed.  Meanwhile comes
word that the Northwest {339} Company's voyageurs, with four hundred
Indians, have captured Michilimackinac without a blow.  The fall of
Michilimackinac, the failure of the Canadians to rally to his flag, the
loss of his provision boat, dampen Hull's ardor so that on August 8 he
moves back with his troops to Detroit.  Eight days later comes Brock
from Niagara with five hundred Loyalists and one thousand Indians under
the great chief Tecumseh to join Procter's garrison of six hundred at
Amherstburg.  The Canadians have come by open boat up Lake Erie from
Niagara through furious rains; but they are fighting for their homes,
and with eager enthusiasm follow Brock on up Detroit River to Sandwich,
opposite the American fort.  Indians come by night and lie in ambush
south of Detroit to protect the Canadians while they cross the river.
Then the cannon on the Canadian side begin a humming of bombs overhead.
While the bombs play over the stream at Sandwich, Brock rushes thirteen
hundred men across the river south of Detroit, and before midday of
August 16 is marching his men through the woods to assault the fort,
when he is met by an officer carrying out the white flag of surrender.
While Brock was crossing the river, something had happened inside the
fort at Detroit.  It was one of those curious cases of blind panic when
only the iron grip of a strong man can hold demoralized forces in hand.
The American officers had sat down to breakfast in the mess room at day
dawn, when a bomb plunged through the roof killing four on the spot and
spattering the walls with the blood of the mangled bodies.  Disgraceful
stories are told of Hull's conduct.  Ashy with fright and trembling, he
dashed from the room, and, before the other officers knew what he was
about, had offered to surrender his army, twenty-five hundred arms,
thirty-three cannon, an armed brig, and the whole state of Michigan.
The case is probably more an example of nervous hysterics than treason,
though the other American officers broke their swords with rage and
chagrin, declaring they had been sold for a price.  It was but the
first of the many times the lesson was taught in this war, that however
well intentioned a volunteer's courage may be, it takes a seasoned man
to make war.  {340} Ten minutes later, a boy had climbed the flagstaff
and hung out the English flag over Detroit.  Of the captured American
army Brock permitted the volunteer privates to go home on parole.  The
regulars, including Hull, were carried back prisoners on the boats to
Niagara, to be forwarded to Montreal.  At Montreal, Hull was given back
to the Americans in exchange for thirty British prisoners.  He was
sentenced by court-martial to be shot for treason and cowardice, but
the sentence was commuted.


At Niagara River, where the main troops of Ontario were centered,
Brock's victory was greeted with simply a madness of joy.  From the
first it had been plain that the principal fighting in Ontario would
take place at Niagara, and along the river Brock had concentrated some
sixteen hundred volunteer troops, {341} raw farm hands most of them,
with a goodly proportion of descendants from the United Empire
Loyalists, who had furbished out their fathers' swords.  But the army
was in rags and tatters; many men had no shoes; before Brock captured
the guns at Detroit there had not been muskets to go round the men, and
there were not cannon enough to mount the batteries cast up along
Niagara River facing the American defenses.  As the boats came down
Lake Erie and disembarked the American prisoners on August 24, at Fort
Erie on the Canadian side, opposite Black Rock and Buffalo, wild yells
of jubilation rent the air.  By nightfall every camp on the Canadian
side for the whole forty miles of Niagara River's course echoed to
shout and counter shout, and a wild refrain which some poet of the
haversack had composed on the spot:

  We 'll subdue the mighty Democrats and pull their dwellings down,
  And have the States inhabited with subjects of the Crown.

Take a survey of the Niagara region.  South is Lake Erie, north is Lake
Ontario, between them Niagara River flowing almost straight north
through a steep dark gorge hewn out of the solid rock by the living
waters of all the Upper Lakes, crushed and cramped, carving a turbulent
way through this narrow canyon.  Midway in the river's course the blue
waters begin to race.  The race becomes a dizzy madness of blurred,
whirling, raging waters.  Then there is the leap, the plunge, the
shattering anger of inland seas hurling their strength over the sheer
precipice in resistless force.  Then the foaming whirlpool below, and
the shadowy gorge, and the undercurrent eddying away in the
swift-flowing waters of the river coming out on Lake Ontario.  On one
side are the Canadian forts, on the other the American, slab-walled all
of them, with scarcely a stone foundation except in bastions used as
powder magazines.  Fort Erie on the Canadian side faces Buffalo and
Black Rock on the American side.  Where the old French voyageurs used
to portage past the Falls, about halfway on the Canadian side south of
the precipice, is the village of Chippewa.  Here Brock has stationed
{342} a garrison with cannon.  Then halfway between the Falls and Lake
Ontario are high cliffs known as Queenston Heights, in plain view of
the American town of Lewiston on the other side.  Cannon line the river
cliffs on both sides here.  All about Lewiston the fields are literally
white with the tents of General Van Rensselaer's army, now grown from
twenty-five hundred to almost eight thousand.  On the Canadian side
cannon had been mounted on the cliffs known as Queenston Heights.
Possibly because the two hundred men would make poor showing in
tents, Brock has his soldiers here take quarters in the farmhouses.
For the rest it is such a rural scene as one may witness any
midsummer,--rolling yellow wheat fields surrounded by the zigzag rail
fences, with square farmhouses of stone and the fields invariably
backed by the uncleared bush land.  Six miles farther down the river,
where the waters join Lake Ontario, is the English post, Fort George,
near the old capital, Newark, and just opposite the American fort of
Niagara.  With the exception of the Grand Island region on the river,
it may be said that both armies are in full view of each other.
Sometimes, when to the tramp--tramp--tramp of the sentry's {343} tread
a loud "All's well" echoes across the river from Lewiston to the
Canadian side, some wag at Queenston will take up the cry through the
dark and bawl back, "All's well here too"; and all night long the two
sentries bawl back and forward to each other through the dark.
Sometimes, too, though strictest orders are issued against such ruffian
warfare by both Van Rensselaer and Brock, the sentries chance shots at
each other through the dark.  Drums beat reveillé at four in the
morning, and the rub-a-dub-dub of Queenston Heights is echoed by
rat-tat-too of Lewiston, though river mist hides the armies from each
other in the morning.  Iron baskets filled with oiled bark are used as
telegraph signals, and one may guess how, when the light flared up of a
night on the Canadian heights, scouts carried word to the officers on
the American side.  One may guess, too, the effect on Van Rensselaer's
big untrained army, when, with the sun aglint on scarlet uniform, they
saw their fellow-countrymen of Detroit marched prisoners between
British lines along the heights of Queenston opposite Lewiston.  Rage,
depression, shame, knew no bounds; and the army was unable to vent
anger in heroic attack, for England had repealed her embargo laws, and
when Brock came back from Detroit he found that an armistice had been
arranged, and both sides had been ordered to suspend hostilities till
instructions came from the governments.  The truce, it may be added,
was only an excuse to enable both sides to complete preparations for
the war.  In a few weeks ball and bomb were again singing their shrill
songs in mid-air.


Brock's victory demoralized the rabble under the American Van
Rensselaer.  Desertions increased daily, and discipline was so
notoriously bad Van Rensselaer and his staff dared not punish desertion
for fear of the army--as one of them put it--"falling to pieces."  Van
Rensselaer saw that he must strike, and strike at once, and strike
successfully, or he would not have any army left at all.  Two thousand
Pennsylvanians had joined him; and on October 9, at one in the morning,
Lieutenant Elliott led one hundred men with muffled paddles from the
American side to two Canadian ships lying anchored off Fort Erie.  One
was the {344} brig captured from Hull at Detroit, the other a sloop
belonging to the Northwest Fur Company, loaded with peltries.  Before
the British were well awake, Elliott had boarded decks, captured the
fur ship with forty prisoners, and was turning her guns on the other
ship when Port Erie suddenly awakened with a belch of cannon shot.  The
Americans cut the cables and drifted on the captured ship downstream.
The fur ship was worked safely over to the American side, where it was
welcomed with wild cheers.  The brig was set on fire and abandoned.

Van Rensselaer decided to take advantage of the elated spirit among the
troops and invade Canada at once.

Over on the Canadian side, Brock, at Fort George, wanted to offer an
exchange of Detroit prisoners for the voyageurs on the captured fur
ship, and Evans was ordered to paddle across to Lewiston with the
offer, white handkerchief fluttering as a flag of truce.  Evans could
not mistake the signs as he landed on the American shore.  Sentries
dashed down to stop his advance at bayonet point.  He was denied speech
with Van Rensselaer and refused admittance to the American camp; and
the reason was plain.  A score of boats, capable of holding thirty men
each, lay moored at the Lewiston shore.  Along the rain-soaked road
behind the shore floundered and marched troops, fresh troops joining
Van Rensselaer's camp.  It was dark before Evans returned to Queenston
Heights and close on midnight when he reached Major General Brock at
Fort George.  Brock thought Evans over anxious, and both went to bed,
or at least threw themselves down on a mattress to sleep.  At two
o'clock they were awakened by a sound which could not be mistaken,--the
thunderous booming of a furious cannonade from Queenston Heights.
Brock realized that the two hundred Canadians on the cliff must be
repelling an invasion, but he was suspicious that the attack from
Lewiston was a feint to draw off attention from Fort Niagara opposite
Fort George, and he did not at once order troops to the aid of
Queenston Heights.

[Illustration: GENERAL BROCK]

Evans' predictions of invasion were only too true.  After one attempt
to cross the gorge, which was balked by storm, Van {345} Rensselaer
finally got his troops down to the water's edge about midnight of
October 12-13.  The night was dark, moonless, rainy,--a wind which
mingled with the roar of the river drowning all sound of marching
troops.  Three hundred men embarked on the first passage of the boats
across the swift river, the poor old pilot literally groaning aloud in
terror.  Three of the boats were carried beyond the landing on the
Canadian side, and had to come back through the dark to get their
bearings; but the rest, led by Van Rensselaer, had safely landed on the
Canadian side, when the batteries of Queenston Heights flashed to life
in sheets of fire, lighting up the dark tide of the river gorge and
sinking half a dozen boat loads of men now coming on a second traverse.
Instantly Lewiston's cannon pealed furious answer to the Canadian fire,
and in the sheet-lightning flame of the flaring batteries thousands
could be seen on the American shore watching the conflict.  As the
Americans landed they hugged the rock cliff for shelter, but the
mortality on the crossing boats was terrible; and each passage carried
back quota of wounded.  Van Rensselaer was shot in the thigh almost as
he landed, but still he held his men in hand.  A second shot pierced
the same side.  A third struck his knee.  Six wounds he received in as
many seconds; and he was carried back in the boats to the Lewiston
side.  Then began a mad scramble through the darkness {346} up a
fisherman's path steep as trail of mountain goat, sheer against the
face of the cliff.  When day dawned misty and gray over the black tide
of the rolling river, the Canadian batterymen of Queenston Heights were
astounded to see American sharp-shooters mustered on the cliff behind
and above them.  A quick rush, and the Canadian batterymen were driven
from their ground, the Canadian cannon silenced, and while wild
shoutings of triumph rose from the spectators at Lewiston, the American
boats continued to pour soldiers across the river.

It was at this stage Brock came riding from Fort George so spattered
with mud from head to heel he was not recognized by the soldiers.  One
glance was enough.  The Canadians had lost the day.  Sending messengers
to bid General Sheaffe hurry the troops from Fort George, and other
runners to bring up the troops from Chippewa behind the Americans on
Queenston Heights, Brock charged up the hill amid shriek of bombs and
clatter of sharpshooters.  He had dismounted and was scrambling over a
stone wall.  "Follow me, boys!" he shouted to the British grenadiers;
then at the foot of the hill, waving his sword: "Now take a breath; you
will need it!  Come on! come on!" and he led the rush of two hundred
men in scarlet coats to dislodge the Americans.  A shot pierced his
wrist.  "Push on, York volunteers," he shouted.  His portly figure in
scarlet uniform was easy mark for the sharpshooters hidden in the brush
of Queenston Heights.  One stepped deliberately out and took aim.
Though a dozen Canadian muskets flashed answer, Brock fell, shot
through the breast, dying with the words on his lips, "My fall must not
be noticed to stop the victory."  Major Macdonnell led in the charge up
the hill, but the next moment his horse plunged frantically, and he
reeled from the saddle fatally wounded.  For a second time the British
were repulsed, and the Americans had won the Heights, if not the day.


The invaders were resting on their arms, snatching a breakfast of
biscuit and cheese about midday, when General Sheaffe arrived from Fort
George with troops breathless from running.  A heart-shattering huzza
from the village warned the Americans {347} that help had come, and
they were to arms in a second; but Sheaffe had swept round the Heights,
Indians on one side of the hill, soldiers on the other, and came on the
surprised Americans as from the rear.  There was a wild whoop, a dash
up the hill, a pause to fire, when the air was splinted by nine hundred
instantaneous shots.  Then through the smoke the British rushed the
Heights at bayonet point.  For three hours the contest raged in full
sight of Lewiston, a hand-to-hand butchery between Sheaffe's fresh
fighters and the Americans, who had been on their feet since midnight.
Indian tomahawk played its part, but it is a question if the scalping
knife did as deadly work as the grenadier's long bayonets.  Cooped up
between the enemy and the precipice, the American sharpshooters waited
for the help that never came.  In vain Van Rensselaer's officers prayed
and swore and pleaded with the volunteer troops on the Lewiston side.
The men flatly refused to cross; for boat loads of mangled bodies were
brought back at each passage.  Discipline fell to pieces.  It was the
old story of volunteers, brave enough at a spurt, going to pieces in
panic under hard and continued strain.  Driven from Queenston Heights,
the invaders fought their way down the cliff path by inches to the
water side, and there . . . there were no boats!  Pulling off his white
necktie, an officer held it up on the point of his sword as signal of
surrender.  It was one of the most {348} gallant fights on both sides
in Canadian history, though officers over on the Lewiston shore were
crying like boys at the sight of nine hundred Americans surrendering.

Truce was then arranged for the burial of the dead.  The bodies of
Brock and Macdonnell were laid on a gun wagon and conveyed between
lines of sorrowing soldiers, with arms reversed, to the burial place
outside Fort George.  As the regimental music rang out the last march
of the two dead officers, minute guns were fired in sympathy all along
the American shore.  "He would have done as much for us," said the
American officers of the gallant Brock.

Van Rensselaer at once resigns.  "Proclamation" Smyth, whose addresses
resemble Fourth of July backwoods orations, succeeds as commander of
the American army; but "Proclamation" Smyth makes such a mess of a raid
on Fort Erie, retreating with a haste suggestive of Hull at Detroit,
that he is mobbed when he returns to the United States shore.  But what
the United States lose by land, they retrieve by sea.  England's best
ships are engaged in the great European war.  From June to December,
United States vessels sweep the sea; but this is more a story of the
English navy than of Canada.  The year of 1812 closes with the cruisers
of Lake Ontario chasing each other through many a wild snowstorm.

As the year 1812 proved one of jubilant victory for Canada, so 1813 was
to be one of black despair.  With the exception of four brilliant
victories wrested in the very teeth of defeat, the year passes down to
history as one of the darkest in the annals of the country.  The
population of the United States at this time was something over seven
millions, and it was not to be thought for one moment that a nation of
this strength would remain beaten off the field by the little province
of Ontario (Upper Canada), whose population numbered barely ninety
thousand.  General Harrison hurries north from the Wabash with from six
to eight thousand men to retrieve the defeat of Detroit.  At Presqu'
Isle, on Lake Erie, hammer and mallet and {349} forging iron are heard
all winter preparing the fleet for Commodore Perry that is to command
Lake Erie and the Upper Lakes for the Americans.  At Sackett's Harbor
similar preparations are under way on a fleet for Chauncey to sweep the
English from Lake Ontario; and all along both sides of the St.
Lawrence, as winter hedged the waters with ice, lurk scouts,--the
Americans, for the most part, uniformed in blue, the Canadians in
Lincoln green with gold braid,--watching chance for raid and counter
raid during the winter nights.  The story of these thrilling raids will
probably pass into the shadowy realm of legend handed down from father
to son, for few of them have been embodied in the official reports.

From being hard pressed on the defensive, Canada has suddenly sprung
into the position of jubilant victor, and if Brock had lived, she would
probably have followed up her victories by aggressive invasion of the
enemy's territory; but all effort was literally paralyzed by the
timidity and vacillation of the governor general, Sir George Prevost.
Prevost's one idea seems to have been that as soon as the obnoxious
embargo laws were revoked by England, the war would stop.  When the
embargo was revoked and the armistice of midsummer simply terminated in
a resumption of war, this idea seems to have been succeeded by the
single aim to hold off conclusions with the United States till England
could beat Napoleon and come to the rescue.  All winter long scouts and
bold spirits among the volunteers craved the chance to raid the
anchored fleets of Lake Ontario and Lake Erie, but Prevost not only
forbade the invasion of the enemy's territory, but before the year was
out actually advocated the abandonment of Ontario.  If his advice had
been followed, it is no idle supposition to infer that the fate of
Ontario would have been the same as the destiny of the Ohio and

One night in February the sentry at the village of Brockville, named
after the dead hero, was surprised by two hundred American raiders
dashing up from the frozen river bed.  Before bugles could sound to
arms, jails had been opened, stores looted, houses {350} plundered, and
the raiders were off and well away with fifty-two prisoners and a dozen
sleigh loads of provisions.  Gathering some five hundred men together
from the Kingston region, M'Donnell and Jenkins of the Glengarrys
prepared to be revenged.  Cannon were hauled out on the river from the
little village of Prescott to cross the ice to Ogdensburg.  The river
here is almost two miles wide, and as it was the 23d of February, the
ice had become rotten from the sun glare of the coming spring.  As the
cannon were drawn to mid-river, though it was seven in the morning, the
ice began to heave and crack with dire warning.  To hesitate was death;
to go back as dangerous as to go forward.  With a whoop the men broke
from quick march to a run, unsheathing musket and fixing bayonet blades
as they dashed ahead to be met with a withering cross fire as they came
within range of the American batteries.  In places, the suck of the
water told where the ice had given behind.  Then bullets were peppering
the river bed in a rain of fire, Jenkins and M'Donnell to the fore,
waving their swords.  Then bombs began to ricochet over the ice.  If
the range of the Ogdensburg cannon had been longer, the whole Canadian
force might have been sunk in mid-river; but the men were already
dashing up the American shore whooping like fiends incarnate.  First a
grapeshot caught Jenkins' left arm, and it hung in bloody splinters.
Then a second shot took off his right arm.  Still he dashed forward,
cheering his men, till he dropped in his tracks, faint from loss of
blood.  No answer came back to the summons to surrender, and, taking
possession of an outer battery, the Canadians turned its cannon full on
the village.  Under cover of the battery fire, and their own cannon now
in position, the whole force of Canadians immediately rushed the town
at bayonet point.  Now the bayonet in a solid phalanx of five hundred
men is not a pleasant weapon to stand up against.  As the drill
sergeants order, you not only stick the bayonet _into_ your enemy, but
you turn it round "to let the air in" so he will die; and before the
furious onslaught of bayonets, the defenders of Ogdensburg broke, and
fled for the woods.  Within an hour the {351} Canadians had burnt the
barracks, set fire to two schooners iced up, and come off with loot of
a dozen cannon, stores of all sorts, and with prisoners to the number
of seventy-four.

[Illustration: YORK (TORONTO) HARBOR]

The ice had left Lake Ontario early this year, and by mid-April
Commander Chauncey slipped out of Sackett's Harbor with sixteen
vessels, having on board seventeen hundred troops, besides the crews.
It will be remembered that the capital of Ontario had been moved from
Niagara (Newark) to York (Toronto) on the north side of Lake Ontario,
then a thriving village of one thousand souls on the inner shore of
Humber Bay.  On the sand reef known as the Island, in front of the
harbor, had been constructed a battery with cannon.  The main village
lay east of the present city hall.  Westward less than a mile was
Government House, on the site of the present residence.  Between
Government House and the village was not a house of any sort, only a
wood road flanking the lake, and badly cut up by ravines.  Just west of
Government House, and close to the water, was a blockhouse or tower
used as powder magazine, mounted with cannon to command the landing
from the lake.  Some accounts speak of yet another little outer battery
or earthwork farther {352} westward.  North of the Government House
road, or what is now King Street, were dense woods.  General Sheaffe,
who had succeeded Brock at Queenston Heights, chanced to be in Toronto
in April with some six hundred men.  Just where the snug quarters of
the Toronto Hunt Club now stand you may look out through the green
foliage of the woods fringing the high cliffs of Lake Ontario, and
there lies before your view the pure sky-blue surface of an inland sea
washing in waves like a tide to the watery edge of the far sky line.
Early in the morning of April 27 a forest ranger, dressed in the
customary Lincoln green, was patrolling the forested edge of
Scarborough Heights above the lake.  The trees had not yet leafed out,
but were in that vernal state when the branches between earth and sky
take on the appearance of an aerial network just budding to light and
color; and in the ravines still lay patches of the winter snow.  The
morning was hazy, warm, odoriferous of coming summer, with not a breath
of wind stirring the water.  As the sun came up over the lake long
lines of fire shot through the water haze.  Suddenly the scout paused
on his parade.  Something was advancing shoreward through the mist,
advancing in a circling line like the ranks of wild birds flying north,
with a lap--lap--lap of water drip and a rap--rap--rap of rowlocks from
a multitude of sweeps.  The next instant the forest rang to a musket
shot, for the scout had discovered Commodore Chauncey's fleet of
sixteen vessels being towed forward by rowers through a dead calm.  The
musket shot was heard by another scout nearer the fort.  The signal was
repeated by another shot, and another for the whole twelve miles, till
General Sheaffe, sitting smoking a cigar in Government House, sprang to
his feet and rushed out, followed by his officers, to scan the harbor
of Humber Bay from the tops of the fort bastions.  Sure enough! there
was the fleet, led by Chauncey's frigate with twenty-four cannon poking
from its sides, a string of rowboats in tow behind to land the army,
coming straight across the harbor over water calm as silk.  It has been
told how the fleet made the mistake of passing beyond the landing, but
the chances are the mistake was intentional {353} for the purpose of
avoiding the cannon of the fort bastions.  At all events the report may
be believed that the most of Toronto people forgot to go back to
breakfast that morning.  A moment later officers were on top of the
bastion towers, directing battery-men to take range for their cannon.
A battalion variously given as from fifty to one hundred, along with
some Indians, was at once dispatched westward to ambush the Americans
landing.  Another division was posted at the battery beyond Government
House.  Sheaffe saw plainly from the number of men on deck that he was
outnumbered four to one, and the flag on the commodore's boat probably
told him that General Dearborn, the commander in chief, was himself on
board to direct the land forces.  Sheaffe has been bitterly blamed for
two things,--for not invading Niagara after the victory on Queenston
Heights, and for his conduct at Toronto.  He now withdrew the main
forces to a ravine east of the fort, plainly preparatory for retreat.
Not thus would Brock have acted.

Meanwhile time has worn on to nine o'clock.  The American ships have
anchored.  The Canadian cannon are sending the bombs skipping across
the water.  The rowboats are transferring the army from the schooners,
and the ambushed sharpshooters are picking the bluecoats off as they
step from ships to boats.

"By the powers!" yells Forsyth, an American officer, "I can't stand
seeing this any longer.  Come on, boys! jump into our boats!" and he
bids the bugles blow till the echoes are dancing over Humber waters.
Dearborn and Chauncey stay on board.  Pike leads the landing, and
Chauncey's cannon set such grape and canister flying through the woods
as clear out those ambushed shooters, the Indians flying like scared
partridges, and the advance is made along Government House road at
quick march.  Just west of the Government House battery the marchers
halt to send forward demand for surrender.  Firing on both sides
ceases.  The smoke clears from the churned-up waters of the bay, and
Commander Pike has seated himself on an old cannon, when, before answer
can come back to the demand, a frightful accident occurs that upsets
all plans.  Waiting for the signal {354} to begin firing again, a
batteryman in the near bastion was holding the lighted fuse in his
right hand, ready for the cannon, when something distracted his
attention, and he wheeled with the lighted match behind him.  It
touched a box of explosives.  If any proof were needed that the tragedy
was _not_ designed, it is to be found in the fact that English officers
were still on the roof of the blockhouse, and the apartment below
crowded with Canadians.  A roar shook the earth.  A cloud of black
flame shot into mid-air, and the next minute the ground for half a mile
about was strewn with the remains, mangled to a pulp, of more than
three hundred men, ninety of whom were Canadians, two hundred and sixty
Americans, including Brigadier Pike fatally wounded by a rock striking
his head.  In the horror of the next few moments, defense was
forgotten.  Wheelbarrows, trucks, gun wagons, were hurried forward to
carry wounded and dead to the hospital.  Leaving his officers to
arrange the terms of surrender, at 2 P.M. Sheaffe retreated at quick
march for Kingston, pausing only to set fire to a half-built ship and
some naval stores.  Lying on a stretcher on Chauncey's ship, Pike is
roused from unconsciousness by loud huzzas.

"What is it?" he asks.

"They are running up the stars and stripes, sir."

A smile passed over Pike's face.  When the surgeon looked again, the
commander was dead.  For twenty-four hours the haggle went on as to
terms of capitulation.  Within that time, two or three things occurred
to inflame the invading troops.  They learned that Sheaffe had slipped
away; as the American general's report put it, "They got the shell, but
the kernel of the nut got away."  They learned that stores had been
destroyed after the surrender had been granted.  Without more
restraint, and in defiance of orders, the American troops gave
themselves up to plunder all that night.  In their rummaging through
the Parliament buildings they found hanging above the Speaker's chair
what Canadian records declare was a _wig_, what American reports say
was a _human scalp_ sent in by some ranger from the west.  From what I
have read in the private papers of fur traders {355} in that period
regarding international scalping, I am inclined to think that wig may
have been an American scalp.  Certainly, the fur traders of
Michilimackinac wrapped no excuses round their savagery when the canoes
all over the coasts of Lake Superior, in lieu of flags, had American
scalps flaunting from their prows.  At all events, word went out that
an American scalp had been found above the Speaker's chair.  It was
night.  The troops were drunk with success and perhaps with the plunder
of the wine shops.  All that night and all the next day and night the
skies were alight with the flames of Toronto's public buildings on
fire.  Also, the army chest with ten thousand dollars in gold, which
Sheaffe had forgotten, was dug up on pain of the whole town being fired
unless the money were delivered.  Private houses were untouched.
Looted provisions which the fleet cannot carry away, Chauncey orders
distributed among the poor.  Then, leaving some four hundred prisoners
on parole not to serve again during the war, Chauncey sails away for

It is a month later.  Down at Fort George on the Canadian side General
Vincent knows well what has happened at Toronto and is on the lookout
for the enemy's fleet.  On the American side of the Niagara River, from
Lake Ontario to Lake Erie, are seven thousand troops eager to wipe out
the stain of last year's defeat.  On the Canadian side, from Fort
George to Chippewa and Erie, are twenty-three hundred men, mostly
volunteers from surrounding farms, and powder is scarce and provisions
are scarce, for Chauncey's fleet has cut off help from St. Lawrence and
Kingston way.  All the last two weeks of May, heavy hot fog lay on the
lake and on the river between the hostile lines, but there was no
mistaking what Chauncey's fleet was about.  Red-hot shot showers on
Fort George in a perfect rain.  Standing on the other side of the river
are thousands of spectators, among them one grand old swashbuckler
fellow in a cocked hat, whose fighting days are past, taking snuff
after the fashion of a former generation and wearing an air of grand
patronage to the American troops because _he_ has seen service in

{356} "No, sir," says the grand old fighting cock pompously to his
auditors, "can't be done!  Have seen it tried on the Continent, and you
can't do it!  Lay a wager you can't do it!  Can't possibly set fire to
a fort by red-hot shot!"

Then at night time, when the lurid glare of flame lights up the foggy
darkness, the old gentleman is put to his trumps.  "See!" they say;
"Fort George _is_ on fire"; and over at Fort George the bucket brigade
works hard as the cannoneers.  But the fog is too good a chance to be
missed by Chauncey; rowing out with muffled oars all the nights of May
24 and 25, he has his men sounding . . . sounding . . . sounding in
silence the channel, right within pistol shot of Fort George.  The
night of the 26th troops and marines are bidden breakfast at two in the
morning, and be ready for action with a single blanket and rations for
one day.  That is all they are told.  They embark at four.  The waters
are dead calm, the morning of the 27th gray as wool with fog.  Sweeps
out Chauncey's fleet, circles up to Fort George with one hundred scows
in tow, carrying fifty soldiers each.  Vincent takes his courage in his
teeth and gathers his one thousand men inside the walls.  Then the
cannon of the frigates split fog and air and earth, and, under cover of
the fire, the scows gain the land by 9 A.M.  First, Vincent's
sharpshooters sally from the fort and fire; then they fire from the
walls; then they overturn guns, retreat from the walls, throw what
powder they cannot carry into the water, and retreat, fighting, behind
stone walls and ditches.  The contest of one thousand against six
thousand is hopeless.  Vincent sends coureurs riding like the wind to
Chippewa and Queenston and Erie, ordering the Canadians to retire to
the Back Country.  By four o'clock in the afternoon Americans are in
possession of the Canadian side from Fort George to Erie.  Vincent
retreats at quick march along the lake shore towards what is now
Hamilton.  June 1 General Dearborn sends his officers, Chandler and
Winder, in hot pursuit with thirty-five hundred men.

Vincent's soldiers have less than ninety rounds of powder to a man.  He
has only one thousand men, for the garrisons of {357} Chippewa and
Queenston Heights and Erie have fallen back in a circle to the region
of St. David's.  June 5, Vincent's Canadians are in camp at Burlington
Bay.  Only seven miles away, at Stony Creek, lies the American army,
out sentries posted at a church, artillery on a height commanding a
field, officers and men asleep in the long grass.  Humanly speaking,
nothing could prevent a decisive battle the next day.  The two American
officers, Chandler and Winder, sit late into the night, candles alight
over camp stools, mapping out what they think should be the campaign.
It is a hot night,--muggy, with June showers lighted up by an
occasional flash of sheet lightning.  Then all candles out, and pitch
darkness, and silence as of a desert!  The American army is asleep,--in
the dead sleep of men exhausted from long, hard, swift marching.  The
artillerymen on the hillocks, the sentries, the outposts at the
church,--they, too, are sound asleep!

[Illustration: FITZGIBBONS]

But the Canadians, too, know that, humanly speaking, nothing can
prevent a decisive battle on the morrow.  The stories run--I do not
vouch for their truth, though facts seem to point to some such
explanation--that Harvey, a Canadian officer, had come back to the
American army that night disguised as a Quaker peddling potatoes, and
noted the unguarded condition of the exhausted troops; also that
Fitzgibbons, the famous scout, came through the American lines dressed
as a rustic selling butter.  Whether these stories are true or not, or
whether, indeed, the Canadians knew anything about the American camp,
they plucked resolution from desperation.  If they waited for the
morrow's battle, they would be beaten.  Harvey proposed to Vincent that
seven {358} hundred picked men go back through the dark and raid the
American camp.  Vincent left the entire matter to Harvey.  Setting out
at 11.30 along what is now Main Street, Hamilton, the Canadians marched
in perfect silence.  Harvey had given orders that not a shot should be
fired, not a word spoken, the bayonet alone to be used.  By two in the
morning of June 6 the marchers came to the church where the sentries
were posted.  Two were stabbed to death before they awakened.  The
third was compelled to give the password, then bayoneted in turn.  The
Canadian raiders might have come to the very midst of the American army
if it had not been for the jubilant hilarity of some young officers,
who, capturing a cannon, uttered a wild huzza.  On the instant, bugles
sounded alarm; drums beat a crazy tattoo, and every man leaped from his
place in the grass, hand on pistol.  The next second the blackness of
the night was ablaze with musketry; the soldiers were firing blindly;
officers were shouting orders that nobody heard; troops were dashing
here, there, everywhere, lost in the darkness, the heavy artillery
horses breaking tether ropes and stampeding over the field.  Major
Plenderleath with a company of young Canadians suddenly found himself
in the midst of the American camp.  One of the young raiders stabbed
seven Americans to death; a brother bayoneted four, and before daylight
betrayed the smallness of their forces the raiders came safely off with
three guns and one hundred prisoners, including the two American
officers, Winder and Chandler.  The loss to the British was one hundred
and fifteen killed and wounded; but there would be no battle the next
day.  The battle of Stony Creek sent the Americans retreating back down
the lake front to Fort George, harried by the English fleet under Sir
James Yeo from Kingston.  A hundred episodes might be related of the
Stony Creek raid.  For years it was to be the theme of camp-fire yarns.
For instance, in the flare of musketry fire a Canadian found himself
gazing straight along the blade of an American's bayonet.  "Sir, the
password," demanded the American sentry.  Luckily the scout, instead of
wearing an English red coat, had on a blue jacket resembling {359} that
of the American marines, and he instantly took his cue.  "Rascal," he
thundered back, "what do you mean, off your line?  Go back to your
post!"  The sentry's bayonet dropped; there was momentary darkness, and
the Canadian literally bolted.  Then ludicrous ill luck befell all the
generals.  Vincent had accompanied the raiders on horseback.  When the
bugles sounded "retire," he gave his horse the bit, and in the pitch
darkness the brute carried him pellmell along the wrong road, over
fences and hayfields, some fifteen miles into the Back Country.  Next
day, when Vincent was missing, under flag of truce messengers went to
the retreating American army to find if he were among the dead.  At
four in the afternoon his horse came limping into the Canadian camp.
Chandler, the American officer, on awakening had sprung on horseback
and spurred over the field shouting commands.  In the darkness his
horse fell and threw him.  When Chandler came to himself he was
prisoner among the Canadians.  Winder's ill luck was equally bad.  By
the flare of the firing he saw what he thought was a group of
artillerymen deserting a gun.  Dashing up, he laid about him with his
pistol, shouting, "Come on! come on!"  Another flare of fire, and he
found himself surrounded by a circle of Canadian bayonets.  "Drop your
pistol, sir, or you are a dead man," ordered a young Canadian, and
Winder surrendered.

It will be recalled that the garrisons of Queenston below the Falls,
and Chippewa above, and Erie at the head of the river, had retreated
from the invading Americans to the Back Country now traversed by
Welland Canal.  From different posts beyond what was known as the Black
Swamp, these bands of the dispersed Canadian army swooped down on the
American outposts, harrying the whole American line from Lake Ontario
to Lake Erie.  Of all the raiders none was more daring than Lieutenant
Fitzgibbons, posted beyond the Beaver Dams, at a stone house near De
Ceu's Falls.  Space forbids more than one episode of his raids.  Once,
while riding along Lundy's Lane alone, he was recognized by the wife of
a Canadian captain, who dashed from {360} the cottage, warning him to
retreat, as a hundred and fifty Americans had just passed that way.
Standing in front of the roadside inn was the cavalry horse of an
American.  Fitzgibbons could n't resist the temptation for a bout with
the foe, and dismounting, was entering the door when a soldier in blue
dashed at him with leveled musket.  Naturally not keen to create alarm,
Fitzgibbons knocked the weapon from the man's hand, and without a sound
had thrown him on the ground, when another American rifleman dashed
from behind.  Strong as a lion, Fitzgibbons threw the first man
violently against the second, and was holding both at bay beneath his
leveled rifle when one of the downed men snatched the Irishman's sword
from the scabbard.  He was in the very act of thrusting the sword point
into Fitzgibbons, when the innkeeper's wife, with a dexterous kick,
sent the weapon whirling out of his hand.  Fitzgibbons disarmed the
men, tied them, threw them across his horse, and himself mounting,
galloped to the woods with a laugh, though one hundred and fifty
Americans were within a quarter of a mile.

The American commanders at Niagara determined to clean out this nest of
raiders from the Back Country, and Lieutenant Boerstler was ordered to
march from Fort George with some six hundred men.  Leaving Fort George
secretly at night, Boerstler came to Queenston at eleven on the night
of June 23.  Here all Canadian soldiers free on parole were seized, to
prevent word of the attack reaching the Back Country.  The troops were
not even permitted to light camp fire or candles.  The great secrecy of
the American marchers at once roused suspicion among the Canadians
between Queenston and the village of St. David's that the expedition
was directed against Fitzgibbons' scouts.  At his home, between
Queenston and St. David's, dwelt a United Empire Loyalist, James
Secord, recovering from dangerous wounds received in the battle of
Queenston Heights.  He was too weak himself to go by night and forewarn
Fitzgibbons, but his wife, Laura Ingersoll, a woman of some thirty
years, was also of the old United Empire Loyalist stock.  She
immediately set out alone for the Back Country to warn Fitzgibbons.
{361} Many and contradictory stories are told of her march.  Whether
she tramped two nights and two days, or only one night and one day,
whether her march led her twenty or only twelve miles, matters little.
She succeeded in passing the first sentry on the excuse she was going
out to milk a cow, and she eluded a second by telling him she wished to
visit a wounded brother, which was true.  Then she struck away from the
beaten path through what was known as the Black Swamp.  It had rained
heavily.  The cedar woods were soggy with moisture, the swamp swollen,
and the streams running a mill race.  Through the summer heat, through
the windfall, over the quaking forest bog, tramped Laura Secord.  It
may be supposed that the most of wild animals had been frightened from
the woods by the heavy cannonading for almost a year; but the hoot of
screech owl, the eldritch scream of wild cat, the far howl of the wolf
pack hanging on the trail of the armies for carrion, were not sounds
quieting to the nerves of a frightened woman flitting through the
forest by moonlight.  It was clear moonlight when she came within range
of Beaver Dam and De Ceu's house.  She had just emerged in an open
field when she was assailed with unearthly yells, and a thousand
ambushed Indians rose from the grass.

[Illustration: LAURA SECORD]

"Woman!  A woman!  What does a white woman here?" demanded the chief,
seizing her arm.  She answered that she was a friend and it was matter
of life and death for her to see {362} Fitzgibbons at once.  So Laura
Secord delivered her warning and saved the Canadian army.  The episode
has gone down to history one of the national legends, like the story of
Madeline Verchères on the St. Lawrence.  Fitzgibbons posts his forty
men in place, and Ducharme, commander of the Indians, scatters his one
thousand redskins in ambush along the trail.  Also, word is sent for
two other detachments to come with all speed.

June 24, at seven in the morning, Boerstler is moving along a narrow
forest trail through the beech woods of Beaver Dams.  The men are
advancing single file, mounted infantrymen first with muskets slouched
across saddle pommels, then the heavy wagons, then cavalry to rear.
The timber is heavy, the trail winding.  Here the long line deploys out
from the trail to avoid jumping windfall; there halt is made to cut a
way for the wagons; then the long line moves sleepily forward, yellow
sunlight shafted through the green foliage across the riders' blue
uniforms.  Suddenly a shot rings out, and another, and another!  The
forest is full of unseen foes, before, behind, on all sides, the
cavalry forces breaking rank and dashing forward among the wagons.
Boerstler sees it will be as unsafe to retreat as to go on.  Sending
messengers back to Fort George for aid, he pushes forward into an open
wheat field.  Fifty-six men have fallen, and the bullets are still
raining from an invisible foe.  Looking back he sees mounted men in
green coats passing and repassing across his trail, filing and
refiling.  It is a trick of Fitzgibbons to give an impression he has
ten times forty men, but the Americans do not know.  There is no
retreat, and Indians are to the fore.  In the midst of confusion
Fitzgibbons comes forward with a white handkerchief on his sword point
and begs Boerstler to prevent bloodshed by instant surrender.
Boerstler demands to see the number of his enemies.  Fitzgibbons says
he will repeat the request to his commanding officer.  Luck is with
Fitzgibbons, for just as he goes back a small party of reënforcements
arrives, and one of its captains acts the part of commanding officer,
telling Boerstler's messenger haughtily that the demand to see the
enemy is an insult, and answer must be given in five minutes {363} or
the Canadians will not be responsible for the Indians.  The fight has
lasted three hours.  Boerstler surrenders with his entire force.  Such
was the battle of Beaver Dams.

Ever since Brock had captured Detroit in 1812, General Procter, with
twenty-five hundred Canadians, had been holding the western part of
Ontario; and the defeat of the English at Fort George had placed him in
a desperate position.  His men had been without pay for months; their
clothes were in tatters, and now, with the Americans in possession of
Niagara region, there was danger of Procter's food supply being cut
off.  Procter himself had not been idle these six months.  In fact, he
had been too active for the good of his supplies.  Space forbids a
detailed account of the raids directed by him and carried out with the
aid of Tecumseh, the great Shawnee chief.  January of 1813 saw a
detachment of Procter's men up Raisin River, west of Detroit, where
they defeated General Winchester and captured nearly five hundred
prisoners, to be set free on parole.  Harrison, the American general,
is on his way to Lake Erie to rescue Detroit.  Procter hastens in May
to meet him with one thousand Canadians and fifteen hundred Indians.
The clash takes place at a barricade known as Fort Meigs on Maumee
River, south of Lake Erie, when again, by the aid of Tecumseh, Procter
captures four hundred and fifty prisoners.  It was on this occasion
that the Indians broke from control and tomahawked forty defenseless
American prisoners.  August sees Procter raiding Sandusky; but the
Americans refuse to come out and battle, and the axes of the Canadians
are too dull to cut down the ironwood pickets, and when at night
Procter's bugles sound retreat, he has lost nearly one hundred men.  At
last, in September, the fleets being built for the Canadians at
Amherstburg and for the Americans at Presqu' Isle are completed.
Whichever side commands Lake Erie will control supplies; and though
Captain Barclay, the Canadian, is short of men, Procter cannot afford
to delay the contest for supremacy any longer.  He orders Barclay to
sail out and seek Commodore Perry, the American, for decisive battle.

{364} On Barclay's boats are only such old land guns as had been
captured from Detroit.  His crews consist of lake sailors and a few
soldiers, in all some three hundred and eighty-four men on six vessels.
September 10, at midday, at Put-in-Bay, Barclay finds Perry's fleet of
seven vessels with six hundred and fifty men.  For two hours the
furious cannonading could be heard all the way up to Amherstburg.
Space forbids details of the fight so celebrated in the annals of the
American navy.  After broadsides that tore hulls clean of masts and
decks, setting sails in flame and the waters seething in mountainous
waves, the two fleets got within pistol shot of each other, and Perry's
superior numbers won.  One third of Barclay's officers were killed and
one third of his men.  The Canadian fleet on Lake Erie was literally
exterminated before three in the afternoon.

[Illustration: TWO VIEWS OF THE BATTLE ON LAKE ERIE  (From prints
published in 1815)]

Procter's position was now doubly desperate.  He was cut off from
supplies.  At a council with the Indians, though Tecumseh, the chief,
was for fighting to the bitter death, it was decided to retreat up the
Thames to Vincent's army near modern {365} Hamilton.  All the world
knows the bitter end of that retreat.  Procter seems to have been so
sure that General Harrison would not follow, that the Canadian forces
did not even pause to destroy bridges behind them; and behind came
Harrison, hot foot, with four thousand fighters from the Kentucky
backwoods.  October first the Canadians had retreated far as Chatham,
provisions and baggage coming in boats or sent ahead on wagons.
Procter's first intimation of the foe's nearness was a breathless
messenger with word the Americans just a few miles behind had captured
the provision boats.  Sending on his family and the women with a convoy
of two hundred and fifty soldiers, Procter faced about on the morning
of October the 5th, to give battle.  On the left was the river Thames,
on the right a cedar swamp, to rear on the east the Indian mission of
Moraviantown.  The troops formed in line across a forest road.  Procter
seems to have lost both his heart and his head, for he permitted his
fatigued troops to go into the fight without breakfast.  Not a
barricade, not a hurdle, not a log was placed to break the advance of
Harrison's cavalry.  The American riders came on like a whirlwind.
Crack went the line of Procter's men in a musketry volley!  The horses
plunged, checked up, reared, and were spurred forward.  Another volley
from the Canadians!  But it was too late.  Harrison's fifteen hundred
riders had galloped clean through the Canadian lines, slashing swords
as they dashed past.  Now they wheeled and came on the Canadians' rear.
Indians and Canadians scattered to the woods before such fury, like
harried rabbits, poor Tecumseh in the very act of tomahawking an
American colonel when a pistol shot brought him down.  The brave Indian
chief was scalped by the white backwoodsmen and skinned and the body
thrown into the woods a prey to wolves.  Flushed with victory and
without Harrison's permission, the Kentucky men dashed in and set fire
to Moraviantown, the Indian mission.  As for Procter, he had mounted
the fleetest horse to be found, and was riding in mad flight for
Burlington Heights.  It is almost a pity he had not fallen in some of
his former heroic raids, for he now became a sorry figure in history,
reprimanded {366} and suspended from the ranks of the army.  The only
explanation of Procter's conduct at Moraviantown is that he was anxious
for the safety of his wife and daughters, perhaps needlessly fearing
that the rough backwoodsmen would retaliate on them for the treachery
of the Indians tomahawking American prisoners of war.

[Illustration: TECUMSEH]

And it had fared almost as badly with the Canadian fleet on Lake
Ontario.  The boats under Sir James Yeo, the young English commander,
were good only for close-range fighting, the boats under Commodore
Chauncey best for long-range firing.  All July and August the fleets
maneuvered to catch each other off guard.  Between times each raided
the coast of the other for provisions, Chauncey paying a second visit
to Toronto, Yeo swooping down on Sodus Bay.  All September the game of
hide and seek went on between the two Ontario squadrons.  Sunday night,
the 8th of September, in a gale, two of Chauncey's ships sank, with all
hands but sixteen.  Two nights later in a squally wind, by the light of
the moon, two more of his slow sailers, unable to keep up with the rest
of the fleet, were snapped up by the English off Niagara with one
hundred captives.  Again, on September 27, at eight in the evening, six
miles off Toronto harbor, Chauncey came up with the English, and the
two fleets poured broadsides into each other.  Then Yeo's crippled
brigs limped into Toronto harbor, while Chauncey sailed gayly off to
block all connection with Montreal and help to convoy troops {367} from
Niagara down the St. Lawrence for the master stroke of the year.  The
way was now clear for the twofold aim of the American staff,--to starve
out Ontario and concentrate all strength in a signal attack on Montreal.

The autumn campaign was without doubt marked by the most comical and
heroic episodes of the war.  Wilkinson was to go down the St. Lawrence
from Lake Ontario with eight thousand men to join General Hampton
coming by the way of Lake Champlain with another five thousand men in
united attack against Montreal.  November 5 Wilkinson's troops
descended in three hundred flat-boats through the Thousand Islands, now
bleak and leafless and somber in the gray autumn light.  It seemed
hardly possible that the few Canadian troops cooped up in Kingston
would dare to pursue such a strong American force, but history is made
up of impossibles.  Feeling perfectly secure, Wilkinson's troops
scattered on the river.  By November 10, at nine in the morning, half
the Americans had run down the rapids of the Long Sault, and were in
the region of Cornwall, pressing forward to unite with Hampton, where
Chateauguay River came into Lake St. Louis, just above Montreal.  The
other half of Wilkinson's army was above the Long Sault, near
Chrysler's Farm.  From the outset the rear guard of the advancing
invaders had been harried by Canadian sharpshooters.  November 11,
about midday, it was learned that a Canadian battalion of eight hundred
was pressing eagerly on the rear.  Chance shots became a rattling
fusillade.  Quick as flash the Americans land and wheel face about to
fight, posted behind a stone wall and along a dried gully with
sheltering cliffs at Chrysler's Farm.  By 2.30 the foes are shooting at
almost hand-to-hand range.  Then, through the powder smoke, the
Canadians break from a march to a run, and charge with all the
dauntless fury of men fighting for hearth and home.  Before the line of
flashing bayonets the invaders break and run.  Two hundred have fallen
on each side in an action of less than two hours.  Then the boats go on
down to the other half of the army at Cornwall, and here is worse
news,--news that sends {368} Wilkinson's army back to the American side
of the St. Lawrence without attempting attack on Montreal.  General
Hampton on his way from Lake Champlain has been totally discomfited.

Finding the way to the St. Lawrence barred by the old raiders' trail of
Richelieu River, Hampton had struck across westward from Lake Champlain
to join Wilkinson on the St. Lawrence, west of Montreal, somewhere near
the road of Chateauguay River.  With five thousand infantry and one
hundred and eighty cavalry he has advanced to a ford beyond the fork of
Chateauguay.  Uncertain where the blow would be struck, Canada's
governor had necessarily scattered his meager forces.

[Illustration: DE SALABERRY]

To oppose advance by the Chateauguay he has sent a young Canadian
officer, De Salaberry, with one hundred and fifty French Canadian
sharp-shooters and one hundred Indians.  De Salaberry does not court
defeat by neglecting precautions because he is weak.  Windfall is
hurriedly thrown up as barricade along the trail.  Where the path
narrows between the river and the bleak forest, De Salaberry has tree
trunks laid spike end towards the foe.  At the last moment comes
McDonnell of Brockville with six hundred men, but De Salaberry's three
hundred occupy the front line facing the ford.  McDonnell is farther
along the river.  By the night of October 25 the American army is close
on the dauntless little band hidden in the forest.  On the morning of
the 26th three thousand Americans {369} cross the south bank of the
river, with the design of crossing north again farther down and
swinging round on De Salaberry's rear.  At the first shot of the
bluecoats poor De Salaberry's forlorn little band broke in panic fright
and fled, but De Salaberry on the river bank had grabbed his bugle boy
by the scruff of the neck with a grip of iron, and in terms more
forcible than polite bade him "sound--sound--sound _the advance_," till
the forest was filled with flying echoes of bugle calls.  McDonnell
behind hears the challenge, and mistaking the cheering call for note of
victory, bids his buglers blow, blow advance, blow and cheer like
devils!  The Americans pour shot into the forest.  The bugle calls
multiply till the woods seem filled with an advancing army and the
yells split the sky.  Also McDonnell has ordered his men to fire
kneeling, so that few of the American shots take effect.  The advancing
host became demoralized.  At 2.30 they sounded retreat, and it may
truly be said that the battle of Chateauguay was won by De Salaberry's
bugle boy, held to the sticking point, not because he was brave, but
because he could not run away.  It is said that Hampton simply would
not believe the truth when told of the numbers by whom he had been
defeated.  It is also said that immediately after the victory De
Salaberry fell ill from a bad attack of nerves, brought on by lack of
sleep.  However that may be, the Canadian governor, Prevost, did not
suffer from an attack of conscience, for in his report to the English
government he ascribed the victory to his own management and presence
on the field.

The year of 1813 closes darkly for both sides.  Before withdrawing from
Niagara region the invaders ravage the country and set fire to the
village of Newark, driving four hundred women and children roofless to
December snows.  Sir Gordon Drummond, who has just come to command in
Ontario, retaliates swiftly and without mercy.  He crosses the Niagara
by night; the fort is carried at bayonet point, three hundred men
captured and three thousand arms taken.  Next, Lewiston is burned, then
Black Rock, and on the last day of the year, Buffalo.  Down {370} on
the Atlantic Coast both fleets win victories, but the English work the
greater hurt, for they blockade the entire coast south of New York.  On
the English squadron are European mercenaries who have been given the
name of Canadian battalions, because their work is to harry the
American coast in order to draw off the American army from Canada.
European mercenaries have been the same the world over,--riffraff
blackguards, guilty of infamous outrages the moment they are out from
under the officers' eye.  These were the troops misnamed "Canadians,"
whose infamous conduct left a heritage of hate long after the war; but
this is a story of the navy rather than of Canada.

The contest has now lasted for almost two years, and both sides are as
far from decisive victory as when war was declared in June of 1812.
Long since the embargo laws of France and England against neutral
nations have been rescinded, and the American coast has suffered more
from the blockade of this war than it ever did from the wars between
France and England.  The year 1814 opens with Napoleon defeated and
England pouring aid across the Atlantic into Canada.  Wilkinson's big
army hovers inactive round Lake Champlain, and Prevost is afraid to
weaken Montreal by forwarding aid to Drummond at Niagara.  The British
fleet blockades Sackett's Harbor, and the American fleet blockades
Kingston.  The Canadians raid Oswego on Lake Ontario for provisions.
The Americans raid Port Dover on Lake Erie, leaving the country a
blackened waste and Tom Talbot's Castle Malahide of logs a smoking
ruin, with the determined aim of cutting off all supplies in Ontario.
Drummond sends his troops scouring the country inland from Niagara for
provisions.  Military law is established for the seizure of cattle and
grain, but for the latter as high a price is paid as $2.50 a bushel,
and many a pioneer farmer back from York (Toronto) and Burlington
(Hamilton) dates the foundation of his fortune from the famine prices
paid for bread during the War of 1812.


Of course the United States did not purpose leaving the frontier of
Niagara because Drummond had burnt the forts.  By {371} May, Major
General Brown had taken command of the United States troops at Buffalo.
The next two months pass, drilling and training, and bringing forward
provisions.  July 3, at day dawn, during fog thick as wool on the lake,
five thousand American troops cross to the Canadian side.  Fort Erie's
English garrison capitulates on the spot, and the English retreat down
Niagara River towards Chippewa by the Falls.  At Chippewa, at
Queenston, at Fort George, in all to guard the Canadian frontier are
only some twenty-eight hundred men.  Three fourths of these are kept
doing garrison duty, leaving only seven hundred men free afield.  Just
beside Chippewa, a creek some twenty feet wide comes into Niagara
River.  The Canadians have destroyed the bridge as they retreat, but
the Americans pursue, and at midnight of the 4th the two armies are
facing each other across the brook, ominous dreadful silence through
the darkness but for the sentry's arms or the lumbering advance of
artillery wagons dragged cautiously near the Canadians.  The bridge is
repaired under peppering shot from the British.  By four on the
afternoon of the 5th, the Americans have crossed the stream.  Their
artillery is in place, and another battalion has forded higher up and
swept round to take the Canadians on the flank.  The Canadians must
either flee in such blind panic as Procter displayed at Moraviantown,
or turn and fight.  Indians in ambush, reënforcements from Fort George
and Queenston formed in three solid columns, the English wheel to face
the foe.  First there is the rattling clatter of musketry fire from
shooters behind in the {372} grass.  Then the solid columns break from
a march to a run, and charge with their bayonets.  The artillery fire
of the Americans meets the runners in a terrible death blast; but as
the front lines drop, the men behind step in their places till the
armies are not one hundred yards apart.  Then another blast from the
heavy guns of the Americans literally tears the Canadian columns to
tatters.  As the smoke lifts there are no columns left, only scattered
groups of men retreating across a field strewn thick with the mangled
dead.  Out of twelve hundred men, the Canadians have lost five hundred.
The charge of the forlorn twelve hundred at Chippewa against the
artillery of four thousand Americans has been likened to the charge of
the Light Brigade in the Russian War.  Though the Canadians were
defeated, their heroic defense had for a few days at least checked the
advance of the invaders.  And now the position of the beleaguered
became desperate.  At Fort George, at Queenston, and at Burlington
Heights, the men were put on half rations.

Why did the Americans not advance at once against Queenston and Fort
George?  For three weeks they awaited Chauncey's fleet to attack from
the water side, so the army could rush the fort from the land side; but
Chauncey was ill and could not come, and the interval gave the
hard-pressed Canadians their chance.  Drummond comes from Kingston with
four hundred fresh men; also he calls on the people to leave their
farms and rally as volunteers to the last desperate fight.  This
increased his troops by another thousand, though many of the volunteers
were mere boys, who scarcely knew how to hold a gun.  Then, from a
dozen signs, Drummond's practiced eye foresaw that a forward movement
was being planned by the enemy without Chauncey's coöperation.  All the
American baggage was being ordered to rear.  False attacks to draw off
observation are made on Fort George outposts.  American scouts are seen
reconnoitering the Back Country.  Drummond rightly guessed that the
attack was being planned in one of two directions,--by rounding through
the Back Country, either to fall in great numbers on Fort George, or to
cut between the {373} Canadian army of Hamilton region and of Niagara
region, taking both battalions in the rear.  From Fort George to
Queenston Canadian troops are posted by Drummond, and where the road
called Lundy's Lane runs from the Falls at right angles to the Back
Country more battalions are ordered on guard against the advance of the
invaders.  Fitzgibbons, the famous scout, climbing to a tree on top of
a high hill, sees the Americans, five thousand of them, gray coats,
blue coats, white trousers, moving up from Chippewa towards Lundy's
Lane.  Quickly sixteen hundred Canadian troops under General Riall take
possession of a hill fronting Lundy's Lane and the Falls.  On the hill
is a little brown church and an old-fashioned graveyard.  In the midst
of the graves the Canadian cannon are posted.  Round the cemetery runs
a stone wall screened by shrubbery, and on both sides of Lundy's Lane
are endless orchards of cherry and peach and apples, the fruit just
beginning to redden in the summer sun.  Whether the enemy aim at Fort
George or Hamilton, the Canadian position on Lundy's Lane must be
passed and captured.  As soon as Drummond had Fitzgibbons' report, he
sent messengers galloping for Hercules Scott, who had been ordered to
retreat to the lake, to come back to Lundy's Lane with his twelve
hundred men.  It may be imagined that the Americans guessed what
message the horseman, in the slather of foam was bearing back to
Hercules Scott; for they at once attacked the Canadians in Lundy's Lane
with fury, to capture the guns on the hill before Hercules Scott's
reënforcements could come.

It was now six o'clock in the evening of July 25, a sweltering hot
night, and the troops on both sides were parched for water, though the
roar of whole inland oceans of water could be heard pouring over the
Falls of Niagara.  As the Canadians had charged against the American
guns at Chippewa, so now the Americans charged uphill against the guns
of the Canadians, hurling their full strength against the enemy's
center.  Creeping under shelter of the cemetery stone walls, the
bluecoats would fire a volley of musketry, jump over the fence, dash
through the smoke, {374} bayonet in hand, to capture the Canadian guns.
Time, time again, the rush was dauntlessly made, and time, time again
met by the withering blast.  Before nine o'clock the attacking lines
had lost more than five hundred men, and as many Canadians had fallen
on the hill.  The dead and mangled lay literally in heaps.  As darkness
deepened, lit only by the wan light of a fitful moon and the awesome
flare of volley after volley, the fearful screams of the dying could be
heard above the roar of the Falls and the whistle of cannon ball.
Riall, the commander of the Canadians, had been wounded and captured.
Of his sixteen hundred Canadians, Drummond had now left only one
thousand, and he was himself bleeding from a deep wound in the neck.
Half the American officers had been carried from the field injured, and
still the command was repeated to rush the hill before Scott's
reënforcements came, and each time the advancing line was driven back
shattered and thinned, Canadians dashing in pursuit, cheering and
whooping, till both armies were so inextricably mixed it was impossible
to hear or heed commands.  It was in one of these mêlées that Riall,
the Canadian, found himself among the American lines and was captured
to the wild and jubilant shouting of the boys in blue and gray.  Pause
fell at nine o'clock.  The Americans were mustering for the final
terrible rush.  The moon had gone behind a cloud, and the darkness was
inky.  Then a shout from the Canadian side split the very welkin.
Hercules Scott had arrived with his twelve hundred men on a run,
breathless and tired from a march and countermarch of twenty miles.
The Americans took up the yell; for fresh reserves had joined them,
too, and Lundy's Lane became a bedlam of ear-shattering sounds,--heavy
artillery wagons forcing up the hill at a gallop over dead and dying,
bombs from the Canadian guns exploding in the darkness, horses taking
fright and bolting from their riders, carrying American guns clear
across the lines among the Canadians.  A wild yell of triumph told that
the Americans had captured the hill.  For the next two hours it was a
hand-to-hand fight in pitchy darkness.  Drummond, the Englishman, could
be heard right in the midst of the {375} American lines, shouting,
"Stick to them, men! stick to them!  Don't give up!  Don't turn!  Stick
to them!  You 'll have it!"  And American officers were found amidst
Canadian battalions, shouting stentorian command: "Level low!  Fire at
their flashes!  Watch the flash, and fire at their flashes!"


The Americans have captured the Canadian guns, but in the darkness they
cannot carry them off.  Each side thinks the other beaten, and neither
will retreat.  In the confusion it is impossible to rally the
battalions, and men are attacking their own side by mistake.  Both
sides claim victory, and each is afraid to await what daylight may
reveal; for it is no exaggeration to say that at the battle of Lundy's
Lane the blood of one third of each side dyed the field.  The Canadians
as defenders of their own homes, fighting in the last ditch, dare not
retire.  The Americans, having more to risk in numbers, withdraw their
troops at two in the morning.  Of her twenty-eight hundred men Canada
had lost nine hundred; and the American loss is as great.  Too
exhausted to retire, Drummond's men flung themselves on the ground and
slept lying among the dead, heedless alike of the drenching rain that
follows artillery fire, of the roaring cataract, of the groans from the
wounded.  Men awakened in the gray dawn to find themselves
unrecognizable from blood and powder smoke, to find, {376} in some
cases, that the comrade whose coat they had shared as pillow lay cold
in death by morning.  While Drummond's men bury the dead in heaps and
carry the wounded to Toronto, the invaders have retreated with their
wounded to Fort Erie.

It now became the dauntless Drummond's aim to expel the enemy from Fort
Erie.  Five days after the battle of Lundy's Lane he had moved his camp
halfway between Chippewa and Fort Erie; but in addition to its garrison
of two thousand, Fort Erie is guarded by three armed schooners lying at
anchor on the lake front.  Captain Dobbs of Drummond's forces makes the
first move.  At the head of seventy-five men, he deploys far to the
rear of the fort through the woods, carrying five flatboats over the
forest trail eight miles, and on the night of the 12th of August slips
out through the water mist towards the American schooners.

"Who goes?" challenges the ships' watchman.

"Provision boats from Buffalo," calls back the Canadian oarsman; and
the rowboats pass round within the shadow of the schooner.  A moment
later the American ships are boarded.  A trampling on deck calls the
sailors aloft; but Dobbs has mastered two vessels before the fort wakes
to life with a rush to the rescue.

Delay means almost inevitable loss to Drummond; for Prevost will send
no more reënforcements, and the Americans are daily strengthening Fort
Erie.  Bastions of stone have been built.  Outer batteries command
approach to the walls, and along the narrow margin between the fort and
the lake earthworks have been thrown up, mounted with cannon elbowing
to the water's edge.  Taking advantage of the elation over Dobbs' raid
on the schooners, Drummond plans a night assault on the 15th of August.
Rain had been falling in splashes all day.  The fort trenches were
swimming like rivers, and it may be mentioned that Drummond's camp was
swimming too, boding ill for his men's health.  One of the foreign
regiments was to lead {377} the assault round by the lake side, while
Drummond and his nephew rushed the bastions.  It will be remembered
these foreign regiments of Napoleonic wars were composed of the
offscourings of Europe.  The fighters were to depend "on bayonet alone,
giving no quarter."  Splashing along the rain-soaked road in silence
and darkness, scaling ladders over shoulders, bayonets in hand, the
foreign troops came to the earthwork elbowing out into the lake.  This
was passed by the men wading out in the lake to their chins; but the
noise was overheard by the fort sentry, and a perfect blaze of musketry
shattered the darkness and drove the mercenaries back pellmell,
bellowing with terror.  A few of the English and Canadian troops
pressed forward, only to find that they could not reach within ladder
distance of the walls at all, for spiked trees had been placed above
the trenches in a perfect crisscross hurdle of sharpened ends.  In old
letters of the period one reads how the trenches were literally heaped
with a jumbled mass of the dead.  The other attacking columns fared
almost as badly.  One of the bastions had been entered by the cannon
embrasures, Drummond, Junior, shouting to "give no quarter--give no
quarter," when, from the cross firing in the courtyards, the powder
magazine below this bastion was set on fire, and exploded with a
terrific crash, killing the assailants almost to a man.  In
all,--killed, wounded, missing,--the assault cost Drummond's army nine
hundred men.  September proved a rainy month.  Drummond's camp became
almost a marsh, and the health of the troops compelled a move to higher
ground.  It was then the Americans sallied out in assault.  Neither
side could claim victory, but the skirmish cost each army more than
five hundred men.  Sir James Yeo now comes sailing up Lake Ontario with
some of the sixteen thousand troops sent from England.  The weather
became unfavorable to movement on either side,--rain and sleet
continuously.  Drummond foresaw that the season would compel the
abandonment of Fort Erie, and on November 5, a scout came in with word
that the invaders had crossed to the American side and Fort Erie had
been blown up.

{378} While Drummond is fighting for the very life of Canada along the
Niagara frontier, the war continues in desultory fashion elsewhere.
Kentucky riflemen raid western Ontario from Detroit to Port Dover.  Up
on the lakes is a story of the war that reads like a page from border
raiders.  American fur traders destroy Sault Ste. Marie.  Canadian fur
traders retaliate by swooping on Mississippi fur posts.  Out on the
Pacific Coast an English gunboat has captured John Jacob Astor's fur
post on the Columbia; and now in the fall of 1814 the Northwest Fur
Company of Montreal are conveying from Astor's fort the furs, worth
millions of dollars, in canoes across the Upper Lakes to Ottawa River.
Two armed American schooners, hiding on the north shore of Lake Huron,
lie in wait for the gay raiders of the Northwest Company; but at the
Sault the Nor'west voyageurs get wind of the danger.  They, in turn,
hide their canoes in some of the blue coves of the north shore.  Then,
stealing out at night, in canoes with muffled paddles, the Nor'westers
come on one schooner while the watch is asleep.  They board her,
bayonet the crew, "pinion some of the wounded to the decks," and with
the captured vessel sidle up to the other vessel, and, before she is
aware of the new masters on board, have captured her too.  Then, scalps
flaunting at the prows of their canoes, the Nor'west fur traders gayly
go their way.  Down at Lake Champlain occurs the great fiasco of the
war,--the blot on Canada's escutcheon.  Prevost with ten thousand
reënforcements has been ordered by the English Governor to proceed from
Montreal against the Americans by both water and land.  While an
English fleet attacks the Americans, Prevost is to lead the troops
against Plattsburg.  But the Canadian fleet meets terrible disaster.
The commander is killed by a rebounding cannon ball just as the action
begins; and twelve of the gunboats manned by the hired foreigners
desert _en masse_.  The rest of the fleet is literally destroyed.
Instead of seconding attack by a battle on land, Prevost sits behind
his trenches waiting for the little fleet to win the battle for him;
and when the fleet is defeated, Prevost's courage sinks with the {379}
sinking ships.  He gathers up his troops and retreats in a scare of
haste,--such a fright of unseemly, unsoldierly haste that nearly one
thousand of his soldiers desert in sheer disgust.  Down at Nova Scotia
are raid and counter-raid too.  The British and American fleets wage
fierce war that is not part of Canada's story; but in the contest the
public buildings of Washington are burned in retaliation for the
burning of Newark; and down at New Orleans the English suffer a
crushing defeat.

Meanwhile the peace commissioners have been at work; and the war that
ought never to have taken place, that settled not one jot of the
dispute which caused it, was closed by the Treaty of Ghent, Christmas
Eve of 1814.  All captured forts, all plunder, all prisoners, are to be
restored.  Michilimackinac and Fort Niagara and Astoria on the Columbia
go back to the United States; but of "impressment" and "right of
search" and "embargo of neutrals" not a word.  The waste of life and
happiness accomplished not a feather's weight unless it were the lesson
of the criminal folly of a war between nations akin in aim and speech
and blood.



FROM 1812 TO 1846

Selkirk's colony--Troubles on passage--Winter on the bay--First winter on
Red River--First conflict--Nor'westers rally to defense--The storm
gathers--The Nor'westers victorious--Selkirk to the rescue--Banditti
warfare in Athabasca--In Athabasca--Robertson escapes--Frobisher's
death--The Pacific empire--Secede from Oregon

When Sir Alexander MacKenzie, the discoverer, went home to retire on an
estate in Scotland, he found the young nobleman and philanthropist, Lord
Selkirk, keenly interested in accounts of vast, new, unpeopled lands,
which lay beyond the Great Lakes.  A change in the system of farming,
which dispossessed small farmers to turn the tenantries into sheep runs,
had caused terrible poverty in Scotland at this period.  Here in Scotland
were people starving for want of land.  There in America were lands idle
for lack of people.  Selkirk had already sent out some colonists to the
Lake St. Clair region of Ontario and to Prince Edward Island, but what he
heard from MacKenzie turned his attention to the new empire of the
prairie.  Then in Montreal, where he had been dined and wined by the
Northwest Company's "Beaver Club," he had heard still more of this vast
new land, of its wealth of furs, of its untimbered fields, where man had
but to put in the plowshare to sow his crop.  The one great obstruction
to settlement there would be the claims of the Hudson's Bay Company to
exclusive monopoly of the country; but as Selkirk listened to the
descriptions of the Red River Valley given by Colin Robertson, who had
been dismissed by the Nor'westers, he thought he saw a way of overcoming
all difficulties which the fur traders could put in the way of settlement.

Owing to competition Hudson's Bay stock had fallen from two hundred and
fifty to fifty pounds sterling a share.  On returning to Scotland Lord
Selkirk had begun buying up Hudson's Bay stock in the market, along with
Sir Alexander MacKenzie; but when MacKenzie learned that Selkirk's object
was colonization first, profits second, he broke in violent anger from
the partnership in speculation, and besought William MacGillivray to go
on {381} the open market and buy against Selkirk to defeat the plans for
settlement.  What with shares owned by his wife's family of
Colville-Wedderburns, and those he had himself purchased, Selkirk now
owned a controlling interest in the Hudson's Bay Company.

Early in 1811 the Company deeds to Lord Selkirk the country of Red River
Valley, exceeding in area the British Isles and extending, through the
ignorance of its donors, far south into American territory.  Colin
Robertson, the former Nor'wester, who first interested Selkirk in Red
River, has meanwhile been gathering together a party of colonists.  Miles
MacDonell, retired from the Glengarry Regiment, has been appointed by
Selkirk governor of the new colony.

[Illustration: SELKIRK]

What of the Nor'westers while these projects went forward?  Writes
MacGillivray from London, where he has been stirring up enmity to
Selkirk's project, "_Selkirk must be driven to abandon his project at any
cost, for his colony would prove utterly destructive of our fur trade_."
How he purposed doing this will be seen.  Writes Selkirk to the governor
of his colony, Miles MacDonell: "_The Northwest Company must be compelled
to quit my lands.  If they refuse, they must be treated as poachers_."
Selkirk believed that the Hudson's Bay Company charter to the Great
Northwest was legal and valid.  He believed that the vast territory
granted to him was legally his own as much as his parks in Scotland.  He
believed that he possessed the same right to expel intruders on this
territory as to drive poachers from his own Scotch parks.  It was the
spirit of feudalism.  As for the Nor'westers, let us look at their
rights.  They disputed that the charter of the Hudson's Bay Company
applied beyond the bounds {382} of Hudson Bay.  Even if it did so apply,
they pointed out that by the terms of the charter it applied only to
lands not possessed by any other Christian power; and who would dispute
that French fur traders and Nor'westers, as their successors, had
ascended the streams of the interior long before the Hudson's Bay men?
It was the spirit of democracy.  It needed no prophet to foresee when
these two sets of claims came together there would be a violent clash.

It is evening in the little harbor of Stornoway, off the Hebrides, north
of Scotland, July 25, 1811.  Waning midsummer has begun to shorten the
long days; and lying at anchor in the twilight a few yards offshore are
the three Hudson's Bay Company boats, outward bound.  For a week the
quiet little fishing hamlet has been in a turmoil, for Governor Miles
MacDonell and Colin Robertson have ordered the Selkirk settlers here--129
of them, 70 farmers, 59 clerks--to join the Hudson's Bay boats as they
swing out westward on their far cruise to the north, and the atmosphere
has literally been on fire with vexations created by spies of the
Northwest Company.  In the first place, as the settlers wait for the
ships coming up from London, trouble makers pass from group to group
scattering a miserable little sheet called "The Highlander," warning "the
deluded people" against going to "a polar land of Indian hostiles."
Besides, dark hints are uttered that the settlers are not wanted for
colonists at all, but for armed battalions to fight the Nor'westers for
the Hudson's Bay Company, in proof whereof the prophets of evil point
ominously to the cannon and munitions of war on board the three old fur
boats.  Then there is too much whisky afloat in Stornoway that week.
Settlers are taken ashore and farewelled and farewelled and farewelled
till unable to find their way down to the rowboats, and then they are
easily frightened into abandoning the risky venture altogether.  On the
settlers who have come as clerks to the Company Governor MacDonell can
keep a strong hand, for they have been paid their wages in advance and
are seized if they attempt to desert.  Then the excise officer here is a
friend of the Nor'westers, and he creates {383} endless trouble rowing
round and round the boats, bawling . . . bawling out . . . to know "if
all who are embarking are going of their own free will," till the ship's
hands, looking over decks, become so exasperated they heave a cannon ball
over rails, which goes splash through the bottom of the harbor officer's
rowboat and sends him cursing ashore to dispatch a challenge for a duel
to Governor MacDonell.  MacDonell sees plainly that if he is to have any
colonists left, he must sail at once.  Anchors up and sails out at eleven
that night, the ships glide from shore so unexpectedly that one
faint-heart, desperately resolved on flight, has to jump overboard and
swim ashore, while two other settlers, who have been lingering over
farewells, must be rowed across harbor by Colin Robertson to catch the
departing ships.  Then Robertson is back on the wharf trumpeting a last
cheer through his funneled hands.  The Highlanders on decks lean over the
vessel railings waving their bonnets.  The Glasgow and Dublin lads
indentured as clerks give a last huzza, and the Selkirk settlers are off
for their Promised Land.

As long ago Cartier's first colonists to the St. Lawrence had their
mettle tested by tempestuous weather and pioneer hardships, so now the
first colonists to the Great Northwest must meet the challenge that fate
throws down to all who leave the beaten path.  Though the season was
late, the weather was extraordinarily stormy.  Sixty-one days the passage
lasted, the tubby old fur ships lying water-logged, rolling to the angry
sea.  MacDonell was furious that colonists had been risked on such
unseaworthy craft, but those old fur-ship captains, with fifty years ice
battling to their credit, probably knew their business better than
MacDonell.  The fur ships had not been built for speed and comfort, but
for cargoes and safety, and when storms came they simply lowered sails,
turned tails to the wind, and rolled till the gale had passed, to the
prolonged woe of the Highland landsmen, who for the first time suffered
seasick pangs.  Then, when Governor MacDonell attempted drills to pass
the time, he made the discovery that seditious talk had gone the rounds
of the deck.  "The Hudson's Bay had no right to this {384} country."
"The Nor'westers owned that country."  "The Hudson's Bay could n't compel
any man to drill and fight."  Selkirk could not give clear deed to their
"lands," and much more to the same effect, all of which proved that some
Nor'wester agent in disguise had been busy on board.

September 24, amid falling snow and biting frost, the ships anchored at
Five Fathom Hole off York Factory, Port Nelson.

[Illustration: NELSON AND HAYES RIVERS  (From Robson)]

The Selkirk settlers had been sixty-one days on board, and they were
still a year away from their Promised Land.  Champlain's colonists of
Acadia and Quebec had come to anchorage on a land set like a jewel amid
silver waters and green hills, but the Selkirk settlers have as yet seen
only rocks barren of verdure as a billiard ball, vales amidst the domed
hills of Hudson Straits, dank with muskeg, and silent as the very realms
of death itself, but for the flacker of wild fowl, the roaring of the
floundering {385} walrus herds, or the lonely tinkling of mountain
streams running from the ice fields to the mossy valleys bordering the
northern sea.  It needed a robust hope, or the blind faith of an almost
religious zeal, to penetrate the future and see beyond these sterile
shores the Promised Land, where homes were to be built, and plenty to
abound.  If pioneer struggles leave a something in the blood of the race
that makes for national strength and permanency, the difference between
the home finding of the West and the home finding of the East is worth

There were, of course, no preparations for the colonists at York Fort,
for the factor could not know they were coming, or anything of Selkirk's
plans, till the annual ships arrived.  On the chance of finding better
hunting farther from the fort, MacDonell withdrew his people from Hayes
River, north across the marsh to a sheltered bank of the River Nelson.
Winter had set in early.  A whooping blizzard met the pilgrims as they
marched along an Indian trail through the brushwood.  There is a legend
of Miles MacDonell, the governor, becoming benighted between York Fort
and Nelson River, and losing his way in the storm.  According to the
story, he beat about the brushwood for twenty-four hours before he
regained his bearings.  Rude huts of rough timber and thatch roof with
logs extemporized for berths and benches were knocked up for wintering
quarters on Nelson River, and the next nine months were passed hunting
deer for store of provisions, and building flatboats to ascend the
interior.  All winter a mutinous spirit was at work among the young
clerks, which MacDonell, no doubt, ascribed to the machinations of
Nor'westers; but the chief factor quickly quelled mutiny by cutting off
supplies, and all hands were ready to proceed when the fur brigades set
out for the interior on the 21st of June, 1812.

Up Hayes River, up the whole length of Winnipeg Lake, then in August the
flatboats are ascending the muddy current of Red River, through what is
now Manitoba, and for the first time the people see their Promised Land.
High banks fringed with maple and oak line the river at what is now
Selkirk.  Then the cliffs lower, and through the woods are broken gleams
{386} of the rolling prairie intersected by ravines, stretching far as
eye can see, where sky and earth meet.  From the lateness of the season
one can guess that the river was low at the bowlder reach known as St.
Andrew's Rapids, and that while the boats were tracked upstream the
people would disembark and walk along the Indian trails of the west bank.
There was no Fort Garry near the rapids, as a few years later.
Buffalo-skin tepees alone broke the endless sweep of russet prairie and
sky, clear swimming blue as the purest lake.  Then the people are back
aboard, laboring hard at the oar now, for they know they are nearing the
end of their long pilgrimage.  The river banks rise higher.  Then they
drop gradually to the flats now known as Point Douglas.  Another bend in
the sinuous red current, looping and curving and circling fantastically
through the prairie, and the Selkirk settlers are in full view of the old
Cree graveyard,--bodies swathed in skins on scaffolding,--down at the
junction of the Assiniboine.  Hard by they see the towered bastions of
the Northwest Company's post, Fort Gibraltar.  Somewhere between what are
known to-day as Broadway Bridge and Point Douglas, the Selkirk settlers
land on the west side.  Chief Peguis and his Cree warriors ride
wonderingly among the white-faced newcomers, marveling at men who have
crossed the Great Waters "to dig gardens and work land."  The barracks
knocked up hastily is known after Selkirk's family name as Fort Douglas;
but the store of deer meat has been exhausted, and the colonists are on
the verge of a second winter.  They at once join the Plain Rangers, or
Bois Brulés (Burnt Wood Runners), half-breed descendants of French and
Nor'west fur traders, who have become retainers of the Montreal Company.
With them the Selkirk settlers proceed south to Pembina and the Boundary
to hunt buffalo.  No instructions had yet come to Red River of the
Northwest Company's hostility to the colony, and the lonely Scotch clerks
of Fort Gibraltar were glad to welcome men who spoke their own Highland
tongue.  Volumes might be written of this, the colonists' first year in
their Promised Land: how the rude Plain Rangers conveyed them to the
buffalo hunt in their {387} creaking Red River carts,--carts made
entirely of wood, hub, tire, axle, and all, or else on loaned ponies; how
when storm came the white settlers were welcomed to the huts and skin
tents of the French half-breeds, given food and buffalo blankets; how
many a young Highlander came to grief in the wild stampede of his first
buffalo hunt; how when the hunters returned to Fort Gibraltar (Winnipeg),
on Red River, with store enough of pemmican for all the fur posts of the
Nor'westers, many a wild happy winter night was passed dancing mad Indian
jigs to the piping of the Highland piper and the crazy scraping of some
Frenchman's fiddle; how when morning came, in a gray dawn of smoking
frost mist, a long line of the colonists could be seen winding along the
ice of Red River home to Fort Douglas, Piper Green or Hector McLean
leading the way, still prancing and blowing a proud national air; how
when spring opened, ten-acre plots were assigned to each settler, close
to the fort at what were known as the Colony Buildings, and one
hundred-acre farms farther down the river.  All this and more are part of
the story of the coming of the first colonists to the Great Northwest.
The very autumn that the first settlers had reached Red River in 1812
more colonists had arrived on the boats at {388} Hudson Bay.  These did
not reach Red River till October of 1812 and the spring of 1813.  By
1813, and on till 1817, more colonists yearly came.  The story of each
year, with its plot and counterplot, I have told elsewhere.  Spite of
Nor'westers' threats, spite of the fact there would be no market for the
colonists when they had succeeded in transforming wilderness prairie into
farms, Selkirk's mad dream of empire seemed to be succeeding.


The cardinal mistake in the contest between Hudson's Bay Company and
Nor'westers, between feudalism and democracy, was now committed by the
governor of the colony, Miles MacDonell.  The year 1813 had proved poor
for the buffalo hunters.  Large numbers of colonists were coming, and
provisions were likely to be scarce.  Also, note it well, while the War
of 1812 did not cut off supplies through Hudson Bay to the English
Company, it did threaten access to the West by the Great Lakes, and cut
off all supplies by way of Detroit and Lake Huron for the Nor'westers.
Was MacDonell scoring a point against the Nor'westers, when they were at
a disadvantage?  Who can answer?  Selkirk had ordered him to expel the
{389} Nor'westers from his lands, and if the violent contest had not
begun in this way, it was bound to come in another.  What MacDonell did
was issue a proclamation in January of 1814, forbidding taking provisions
from Selkirk's territory of Assiniboia.  It practically meant that the
Plain Rangers must not hunt buffalo in the limits of modern Manitoba, and
must not sell supplies to the Nor'westers.  It also meant that all the
upper posts of the Nor'westers--the fur posts of Athabasca and British
Columbia, which depended on pemmican for food--would be without adequate
provisions.  The Plain Rangers were enraged beyond words, and doubly
outraged when some Hudson's Bay men began seizing buffalo meat at Pembina
River, which was beyond the limits of Selkirk's territory.  Writes Peter
Fidler, one of the Hudson's Bay factors, "_If MacDonell only perseveres,
he will starve the Nor westers out_."

[Illustration: FORT DOUGLAS]

One can guess the anger in the annual meeting of the Nor'westers at Fort
William in July of 1814.  Like generals on field of war they laid out
their campaign.  Duncan Cameron, a United Empire Loyalist officer of the
1812 War, is to don his red regimentals and proceed to Red River, where
his knowledge of the Gaelic tongue may be trusted to win over Selkirk
settlers.  "_Nothing but the complete downfall of the colony will satisfy
some_," wrote one of the fiery Nor'westers to a brother officer.  Such
was the mood of the Nor'westers when they came back from their annual
meeting on Lake Superior to Red River, and MacDonell fanned this mood to
dangerous fury by threatening to burn the Nor'westers' forts to the
ground unless they moved from Selkirk's territory.  For the present
Duncan Cameron contents himself with striking up a warm friendship with
the Highlanders of the settlement and offering to transport two hundred
of them free of cost to Eastern Canada.  MacDonell seizes still more
provisions from northwest forts.  Cameron, the Nor'wester, comes back
from the annual meeting of 1815 still more bellicose.  He carries the
warrant to arrest Governor Miles MacDonell for the seizure of those
provisions.  MacDonell, safe behind the palisades of Fort Douglas, laughs
{390} the warrant to scorn; but it is another matter when the Plain
Rangers ride across the prairie from Fort Gibraltar armed, and pour such
hot shot into Fort Douglas that the colonists, frenzied with fear, huddle
to the fort for shelter.  To insure the safety of his colonists,
MacDonell surrenders to the Nor'westers and is sent to Eastern Canada for
a trial which never takes place.  No sooner has Governor MacDonell been
expelled than Cuthbert Grant, warden of the Plain Rangers, rides over to
the colony and warns the colonists to flee for their lives, from Indians
enraged at "these land workers spoiling the hunting fields."  What the
Indians thought of this defense of their rights is not stated.  They were
silent and unacting witnesses of the unedifying spectacle of white men
ready to fly at each other's throats.  It was too late for the colonists
to reach Hudson Bay in time for the annual ships of 1815, so the
houseless people dispersed amid the forests of Lake Winnipeg, where they
could be certain of at least fish for food.

Word of the two hundred settlers having been moved from Red River by the
Nor'westers, of MacDonell's forcible expulsion, and of the dispersion of
the rest of the colony had, of course, been sent to Selkirk and his
agents in both Montreal and London.  Swift retaliation is prepared.
Colin Robertson, who speaks French like a Canadian and knows all the
Nor'west voyageurs of the St. Lawrence, is sent to gather up two hundred
French boatmen under the very noses of the Nor'westers at Montreal.  With
these Robertson is to invade the far-famed Athabasca, whence come the
best furs, the very heart of the Nor'westers' stamping ground.  Robert
Semple is appointed governor of the colony on Red River, with
instructions to resist the aggressions of the Nor'westers even to the
point of "_a shock that may be felt from Montreal to Athabasca_."
Selkirk himself comes to Canada to interview the Governor General about
military forces to protect his colony.

Robertson, with his two hundred voyageurs for Athabasca, follows the old
Ottawa trail of the French explorers, from the St. Lawrence to the Great
Lakes, and from the Great Lakes to {391} Red River by way of Winnipeg
Lake.  Whom does he find on the shores of the lake but Selkirk's
dispersed colonists!  Ordering John Clarke, an old campaigner of Astor's
company on the Columbia, to lead the two hundred French voyageurs on up
to Athabasca, Colin Robertson rallies the colonists together and leads
them back to Red River for the winter of 1815-1816.  Feeling sure that he
had destroyed Selkirk's scheme root and branch, Cameron has remained at
Fort Gibraltar with only a few men, when back to the field comes
Robertson, stormy, capable, robust, red-blooded, fearless, breathing
vengeance on Selkirk's foes.


By the spring of 1816 the tables have been turned with a vengeance.
Cameron, the Nor'wester, has been seized and sent to Hudson Bay to be
expelled from the country.  Fort Gibraltar has been pulled down and the
timbers used to strengthen Fort Douglas, whose pointed cannon command all
passage up and down Red River.  It was hardly to be supposed that the
haughty Nor'westers would submit to expulsion without a blow.  From
Athabasca, from New Caledonia, from Qu'Appelle . . . they rally their
doughtiest fighters under Cuthbert Grant, the {392} half-breed Plain
Ranger.  From Montreal and Fort William come spurring the leading
partners, with one hundred and seventy French-Canadian bullies, and a
brass cannon concealed under oilcloth in a long boat.  The object of the
Plain Rangers is to meet the up-coming partners with supplies for the
year; but is that any reason for the riders who are striking eastward
from Assiniboine to Red River, decking themselves out in war paint and
stripping like savages before battle?  The object of the partners is to
meet the Plain Rangers on Red River; but is that any reason for bringing
a cannon concealed under oilcloth all the way from Lake Superior?  Or do
men fighting a life-and-death struggle for the thing the world calls
success ever acknowledge plain motives within themselves at all?  Is it
not rather the blind brute instinct of self-protection, forfend what may?

[Illustration: RED RIVER SETTLEMENT, 1816-1820]

"Listen, white men!  Beware!  Beware!" the Cree chief Peguis warns
Governor Semple.  What means the spectacle of white brothers, who preach
peace, preparing for war over a few beaver pelts?  Chief Peguis cannot
understand, except this is the way of white men.

{393} And now, unluckily for Governor Semple, he quarrels with his
adviser, Colin Robertson.  Robertson, from his early training in
Northwest ranks, reads the signs, and is for striking a blow before the
enemy can strike him.  Semple is still talking peace.  Robertson leaves
Red River in disgust, and departs for Hudson Bay to take ship for
England.  The Plain Rangers, it may be explained, have uttered the wild
threat that if they "can catch Robertson," they will avenge the
destruction of Fort Gibraltar "by skinning him alive and feeding him to
the dogs."  Also it is well known, Nor'westers of Qu'Appelle have
muttered angry prophecies about "the ground being drenched with the blood
of the colonists."

Still Semple talks peace, which is a good thing in its place; but this is
n't the place.

"My Governor!  My Governor!" pleads an old hunter of the Hudson's Bay
with Semple; "are you not afraid?  The half-breeds are gathering to kill

Semple laughs.  Pshaw!  _He_ has law on _his_ side.  Law!  What is law?
The old hunter of the lawless wilds does n't know that word.  That word
does n't come as far west as the _Pays d'en Haut_.

It is sunset of June 18, 1816.  Old chief Peguis comes again to the
Hudson's Bay fort on Red River.

"Governor of the gard'ners!" he solemnly warns; "governor of the land
workers and gard'ners, listen! . . ."  Not much does he add, after the
fashion of his race.  Only this, "_Let me bring my warriors to protect

Semple laughs at such fears.

It is sunset of June 19.  A soft west wind has set the prairie grass
rippling like a green sea between the fort and the sun hanging low at the
western sky line.  A boy on the lookout above one of the bastion towers
of Fort Douglas suddenly shouts, "The half-breeds are coming!"

Semple ascends the tower and looks through a field glass.  There is a
line of sixty or seventy horsemen, all armed, not coming to the fort, but
moving diagonally across from the Assiniboine to the Red towards the
colony.  And then, north {394} towards the colony, is wildest
clamor,--people in ox carts, people on horseback, people on foot,
stampeding for the shelter of the fort.  And up to this moment absolutely
nothing has occurred to create this terror.

"Let twenty men follow me," orders Semple; and he marches out, followed
by twenty-seven armed men.

As they wade through the waist-high hay fields they meet the fleeing

"Keep your back to the river!" shouts one colonist, convoying his family.
"They are painted, Governor!  Don't let them surround you."

Semple sends back to the fort for a cannon to be trundled out.

Young Lieutenant Holte's gun goes off by mistake.  Semple turns on him
with fury and bids him have a care: there is to be no firing.

The half-breeds have turned from their trail and are coming forward at a

"There 's Grant, the Plain Ranger, Governor!  Let me shoot him," pleads
one Hudson's Bay man.

"God have mercy on our souls!" mutters one of the colonists, counting the
foe; "but we are all dead men."

All the world knows the rest.  At a knoll where grew some trees, a spot
now known in Winnipeg on North Main Street as Seven Oaks, Grant, the
Ranger, sent a half-breed, Boucher, forward to parley.

"What do you want?" demands Semple.

"We want our fort!"

"Go to your fort, then!"

"Rascal!  You have destroyed our fort!"

"Dare you to speak so to me?  Arrest him!"

Boucher slips from his saddle.  The Plain Rangers think he has been shot.
Instantaneously from both sides crashes musketry fire.  Semple falls with
a broken thigh.  Before Grant can control his murderous crew or obtain
aid for the wounded governor, a scamp of a half-breed has slashed the
fallen man to death.  Two or three Hudson's Bay men escape through the
long grass {395} and swim across Red River.  Two or three more save
themselves by instant surrender.  For the rest of the twenty-seven, they
lie where they have fallen.  They are stripped, mutilated, cut to pieces.
Only one Nor'wester is killed, only one wounded.

Later, in order to save the lives of the settlers, Fort Douglas is
surrendered.  For a second time the colonists are dispersed.  Before
going down Red River in flatboats two of the Hudson's Bay people go out
with Chief Peguis by night and bury the dead; but they have no time to
dig deep graves, and a few days later the wolves have ripped up the

Near Lake Winnipeg the fleeing colonists meet the Northwest partners with
their one hundred and seventy men.  No need to announce what the
spectacle of the terrified colonists means.  A wild whoop rends the air.
"Thank Providence it was all over before we came," writes one devout
Nor'wester; "for we intended to storm the fort."  Both crews pause.  The
Nor'westers interrogate the settlers.  Semple's private papers are
seized.  Also, two Hudson's Bay men who took part in the Seven Oaks fight
are arrested, to be carried on down to Northwest headquarters on Lake
Superior.  Then the settlers go on to Lake Winnipeg.

At the various camping places on the way down to Fort William, those two
Hudson's Bay prisoners overhear strange threats.  It is night on the Lake
of the Woods.  Voices of Northwest partners sound through the dark.  They
are talking of Selkirk coming to the rescue of his people with an armed
force.  Says the wild voice of a Nor'wester whose brother had been killed
by a Hudson's Bay man some years before, "There are fine quiet places
along Winnipeg River if he comes this way." . . .  Then scraps of
conversation. . . .  Then, "The half-breeds could capture him when he is
asleep." . . .  Then words too low to be heard. . . .  Then, "They could
have the Indians shoot him." . . .  Then in voice of authority
restraining the wild folly of a bloodthirst for vengeance, "Things have
gone too far, but we can throw the blame on the Indians."

The wild words of a man gone mad for revenge must not be taken as the
policy of a great commercial company.

{396} Meantime, where was Selkirk?  He had arrived in Montreal.  Secret
coureur, whose adventures I have told elsewhere, had carried him word of
the dangers impending over his colony.  He at once appealed to the
Governor General for a military force to protect the settlers, but it
must be recalled how Upper and Lower Canada were to be governed under the
Act of 1791.  There were to be the governor, the legislative council
appointed by the crown, and the representative assembly.  The legislative
council was entirely dominated by the Northwest Company.  Of the
different Quebec courts, there was scarcely a judge who was not
interested directly or indirectly in the Northwest Company.  Lord Selkirk
could obtain no aid which would conflict with that company's policy.
Then Selkirk petitioned the Governor that, in view of the threats against
himself, he might be granted the commission of a justice of the peace and
permission to take a personal bodyguard at his own cost to the west.
These requests the Governor granted.

Thereupon, Selkirk gathers up some two hundred of the De Meuron and De
Watteville regiments, mercenaries disbanded after the War of 1812, and
sets out for the west.  Not aware that Robertson has left Red River, he
sends him word to keep the colonists together and to expect help by way
of the states from the Sault in order to avoid touching at the
Nor'westers' post at Fort William.  The coureur with this message is
waylaid by the Nor'westers, but Selkirk himself, preceded by his former
governor, Miles MacDonell, has gone only as far as the Sault when word
comes back of the Seven Oaks massacre.  What to do now?  He can obtain no
justice in Eastern Canada.  Two justices of the peace at the Sault refuse
to be involved in the quarrel by accompanying him.  Selkirk goes on
without them, accompanied by the two hundred hired soldiers; but instead
of proceeding to Red River by Minnesota, as he had first planned, he
strikes straight for Fort William, the headquarters of the Nor'westers.

He arrives at the fort August 12, only a few days after the Northwest
partners had come down from the scene of the {397} massacre at Red River.
Cannon are planted opposite Fort William.  Things have "gone too far."
The Nor'westers capitulate without a stroke.  Then as justice of the
peace, my Lord Selkirk arrests all the partners but one and sends them
east to stand trial for the massacre of Seven Oaks.  The one partner not
sent east was a fuddled old drunkard long since retired from active work.
This man now executes a deed of sale to my Lord Selkirk for Fort William
and its furs.  The man was so intoxicated that he could not write, so the
afore-time governor, Miles MacDonell, writes out the bargain, which one
could wish so great a philanthropist as Selkirk had not touched with
tongs.  Before midwinter of 1817 has passed, the De Meuron soldiers have
crossed Minnesota and gone down Red River to Fort Douglas.  One stormy
night they scale the wall and bundle the Northwest usurpers out, bag and


July of 1817 comes Selkirk himself to the Promised Land.  There is no
record that I have been able to find of his thoughts on first nearing the
ground for which so much blood had been shed, and for which he himself
was yet to suffer much; but {398} one can venture to say that his most
daring hope did not grasp the empire that was to grow from the seed he
had planted.  He meets the Indians in treaty for their lands.  He greets
his colonists in the open one sunny August day, speaking personally to
each and deeding over to them land free of all charge.  "This land I give
for your church," he said, standing on the ground which the cathedral now
occupies.  "That plot shall be for your school," pointing across the
gully; "and in memory of your native land, let the parish be called

Of the trials and counter trials between the two companies, there is not
space to tell here.  Selkirk was forced to pay heavy damages for his
course at Fort William, but the courts of Eastern Canada record not a
single conviction against the Nor'westers for the massacre of Seven Oaks.
Selkirk retired shattered in health to Europe, where he died in 1820.
The same year passed away Alexander MacKenzie, his old-time rival.

The truth is, each company had gone too far and was on the verge of ruin.
From Athabasca came the furs that prevented bankruptcy, and whichever
company could drive the other from Athabasca could practically force its
rival to ruin or union.  When Colin Robertson had rallied the dispersed
colonists from Lake Winnipeg, he had left John Clarke to conduct the two
hundred Canadian voyageurs to Athabasca for the Hudson's Bay Company.
Clarke had been a Nor'wester before he joined Astor, and was a born
fighter, idolized by the Indians.  So confident was he of success now
that he galloped his canoes up the Saskatchewan without pause to gather
provisions.  Once on the ground on Athabasca Lake, he divided his party
into two or three bands and sent them foraging to the Nor'westers' forts
and hunting grounds up Peace River, down Slave Lake, at Athabasca itself.
Weakened by division and without food to keep together, his men fell easy
prey to the wily Nor'westers.  Of those on Slave Lake eighteen died from
starvation.  Those on Peace River were captured and literally whipped out
of the country, signing oaths never to return.  Those at {399} Athabasca
being leading officers were held prisoners.  Meanwhile the Hudson's Bay
Company is defeated at Seven Oaks and victorious at Fort William.  The
Nor'westers at Athabasca were keen to keep the frightened Indians of the
north ignorant that Selkirk had triumphed at Fort William, but the news
traveled over the two thousand miles of prairie in that strange hunter
fashion known as "moccasin telegram," and the story is told how the
captured Hudson's Bay officers let the secret out for the benefit of the
Indians now afraid to carry their hunt to a Hudson's Bay man.

Revels and all-night carousals marked the winter with the triumphant
Nor'westers of Athabasca Lake.  Often, when wild drinking songs were
ringing in the Nor'westers' dining hall, the Hudson's Bay men would be
brought in to furnish a butt for their merciless victors.  One night,
when the hall was full of Indians, one of the Northwest bullies began to
brawl out a song in celebration of the Seven Oaks affair.

  "The H.B.C. came up a hill, and _up_ a hill they came,
  The H.B.C. came up the hill, but _down_ they went again."

Tired of their rude horseplay, one of the Hudson's Bay officers spoke up:
"Y' hae niver asked me for a song.  I hae a varse o' me ain compaesin."

Then to the utter amaze of the drunken listeners and astonishment of the
Indians, the game old officer trolled off this stave:

  "But Selkirk brave went _up_ a hill, and to Fort William came!
  When in he popped and out from thence could not be driven again."

The thunderstruck Nor'wester leaped to his feet with a yell: "A hundred
guineas for the name of the men who brought that news here."

"A hundred guineas for twa lines of me ain compaesin!  Extravagant, sir,"
returns the canny Scot.

From accounts held by the Hudson's Bay Company's Montreal lawyers it is
seen that Clarke's expedition cost the Company 20,000 pounds.

{400} Before the massacre of Seven Oaks Colin Robertson had gone down to
Hudson Bay in high dudgeon with Semple, intending to take ship for
England; but that fall the ice drive prevented one ship from leaving the
bay, and Robertson was stranded at Moose Factory for the winter, whither
coureurs brought him word of the Seven Oaks tragedy and Selkirk's victory
at Fort William.  Taking an Indian for guide, Robertson set out on
snowshoes for Montreal, following the old Ottawa trail traversed by
Radisson and Iberville long ago.  Montreal he found in a state of turmoil
almost verging on riot over the imprisonment of the Northwest partners,
whom Selkirk had sent east.  Nightly the goals [Transcriber's note:
gaols?] were illuminated as for festivals.  Nightly sound of wandering
musicians came from the cell windows, where loyal friends were serenading
the imprisoned partners.  They were released, of course, and acquitted
from the charge of responsibility for the massacre of Seven Oaks.

Presently Robertson finds himself behind the bars for his part in
destroying Fort Gibraltar and arresting Duncan Cameron.  He too is
acquitted, and he tells us frankly that a private arrangement had been
made beforehand with the presiding judge.  Probably if the Nor'westers
had been as frank, the same influence would explain their acquittal.

Robertson found himself free just about the time Lord Selkirk came back
from Red River by way of the Mississippi in order to avoid those careful
plans for his welfare on the part of the Nor'westers at "the quiet places
along Winnipeg River."  The Governor of Canada had notified members of
both companies unofficially that the English government advised the
rivals to find some basis of union, which practically meant that if the
investigations under way were pushed to extremes, both sides might find
themselves in awkward plight; but the fight had gone beyond the period of
pure commercialism.  It was now a matter of deadly personal hate between
man and man, which, I am sorry to say, has been carried down by the
descendants of the old fighters almost to the present day.  Each side
hoped to drive the other to bankruptcy; and the last throes of the {401}
deadly struggle were to be in Athabasca, the richest fur field.  While
Selkirk is fighting his cause in the courts, he gives Robertson carte
blanche to gather two hundred more French voyageurs and proceed to the


Midsummer of 1819 finds the stalwart Robertson crossing Lake Winnipeg to
ascend the Saskatchewan.  At the mouth of the Saskatchewan a miserable
remnant of terrified men from the last Athabasca expedition is added to
Robertson's party; and John Clarke, breathing death and destruction
against the Nor'westers, goes along as lieutenant to Robertson.
Everywhere are signs of the lawless conditions of the fur trade.  Not an
Indian dare speak to a Hudson's Bay man on pain of horsewhipping.
Instead of canoes gliding up and down the Saskatchewan like birds of
passage, reign a silence and solitude as of the dead.  Though Robertson
bids his voyageurs sing and fire off muskets as signals for trade, not a
soul comes down to the river banks till the fleet of advancing traders is
well away from the Saskatchewan and halfway across the height of land
towards the Athabasca.

{402} The amazement of the Nor'westers at Fort Chippewyan in Athabasca
when Robertson pulled ashore at the conglomeration of huts known as Fort
Wedderburn, may be guessed.  Two or three of the partners ran down to the
shore and called out that they would like to parley; but John Clarke,
filled with memory of former outrages and rocking the canoe in his fury
so that it almost upset, met the overtures with a volley of stentorian
abuse that sent the Nor'westers scampering and set Robertson laughing
till the tears ran down his cheeks.

The change of spirit on the part of the Nor'westers was easily explained.
The most of their men were absent on the hunting field.  In a few weeks
Robertson had his huts in order and had dispatched his trappers down to
Slave Lake and westward up Peace River.  Then, in October, came more
Nor'west partners from Montreal.  The Nor'westers were stronger now and
not so peacefully inclined.  Nightly the French bullies, well plied with
whisky, would come across to the Hudson's Bay fort, bawling out challenge
to fight; but Robertson held his men in hand and kept his powder dry.

Early on the morning of October the 11th, Robertson's valet roused him
from bed with word that a man had been accidentally shot.  Slipping a
pistol in his pocket and all unsuspicious of trickery, Robertson dashed
out.  It happened that the most of his men were at a slight distance from
his fort.  Before they could rally to his rescue he was knocked down,
disarmed, surrounded by the Nor'westers, thrown into a boat, and carried
back to their fort a captive.  In vain he stormed almost apoplectic with
rage, and tried to send back Indian messengers to his men.  The
Nor'westers laughed at him good-naturedly and relegated him to quarters
in one room of a log hut, where sole furnishings were a berth bed and a
fireplace without a floor.  Robertson's only possessions in captivity
were the clothes on his back, a jackknife, a small pencil, and a
notebook; but he probably consoled himself that his men were now on
guard, and, outnumbering the Nor'westers two to one, could hold the
ground for the Hudson's Bay that winter.  As {403} time passed the
captive Robertson began to wrack his brains how to communicate with his
men.  It was a drinking age; and the fur traders had the reputation of
capacity to drink any other class of men off their legs.  Robertson
feigned an unholy thirst.  Rapping for his guard, he requested that
messengers might be sent across to the Hudson's Bay fort for a keg of
liquor.  It can be guessed how readily the Nor'westers complied; but
Robertson took good care, when the guard was absent and the door locked,
to pour out most of the whisky on the earth floor.  Then taking slips of
paper from his notebook, he cut them in strips the width of a spool.  On
these he wrote cipher and mysterious instructions, which only his men
could understand, giving full information of the Nor'westers' movements,
bidding his people hold their own, and ordering them to send messages
down to the new Hudson's Bay governor at Red River,--William
Williams,--to place his De Meuron soldiers in ambush along the Grand
Rapids of the Saskatchewan to catch the Northwest partners on their way
to Montreal the next spring.  These slips of paper he rolled up tight as
a spool and hammered into the bunghole of the barrel.  Then he plastered
clay over all to hide the paper, and bade the guard carry this keg of
whisky back to the H.B.C. fort; it was musty, Robertson complained; let
the men rinse out the keg and put in a fresh supply!

All that winter Robertson, the Hudson's Bay man, captive in the
Nor'westers' fort, sent weekly commands to his men by means of the whisky
kegs; but in the spring his trick was discovered, and the angry
Nor'westers decided he was too clever a man to be kept on the field.
They would ship him out of the country when their furs were sent east.

On the way east he succeeded in escaping at Cumberland House.  Waiting
only a few hours, he launched out in his canoe and followed on the trail
of the Northwest partners, on down to see what would happen at Grand
Rapids, where the Saskatchewan flows into Lake Winnipeg.  A jubilant
shout from a canoe turning a bend in the river presently announced the
news: "All the Northwest partners captured!"  When Robertson {404} came
to Grand Rapids he found Governor Williams and the De Meurons in
possession.  Cannon pointed across the river below the rapids.  The
Northwest partners were prisoners in a hut.  The voyageurs were allowed
to go on down to Montreal with the furs.  This last act in the great
struggle ended tragically enough.  What was to be done with the captured
partners?  They could not be sent to Eastern Canada.  Pending
investigations for the union of the companies, Governor Williams sent
them to York Factory, Hudson Bay, whence some took ship to England,
others set out overland on snowshoes for Canada; but in the scuffle at
Grand Rapids, Frobisher, one of the oldest partners, with a reputation of
great cruelty in his treatment of Hudson's Bay men, had been violently
clubbed on the head with a gun.  From that moment he became a raving
maniac, and the Hudson's Bay people did not know what to do with such a
captive.  He must not be permitted to go home to England.  His condition
was too terrible evidence against them; so they kept him prisoner in the
outhouses of York Factory, with two faithful Nor'wester half-breeds as
personal attendants.

One dark cold night towards the first of October Frobisher succeeded in
escaping through the broken bars of his cell window.  A leap took him
over the pickets.  By chance an old canoe lay on Hayes River.  With this
he began to ascend stream for the interior, paddling wildly, laughing
wildly, raving and singing.  The two half-breeds knew that a voyage to
the interior at this season without snowshoes, food, or heavy clothing,
meant certain death; but they followed their master faithfully as black
slaves.  Wherever night found them they turned the canoe upside down and
slept under it.  Fish lines supplied food, and the deserted hut of some
hunter occasionally gave them shelter for the night.  Winter set in
early.  The ice edging of the river cut the birch canoe.  Abandoning it,
they went forward on foot.  From York Fort, Hudson Bay, the nearest
Northwest post was seven hundred miles.  By the end of October they had
not gone half the distance.  Then came one of those changes so frequent
in northern climes,--a sunburst of warm {405} weather following the first
early winter, turning all the frozen fields to swimming marshes, and the
travelers had no canoe.  By this time Frobisher was too weak to walk.  As
his body failed his mind rallied, and he begged the two half-breeds to go
on without him, as delay meant the death of all three; but the faithful
fellows carried him by turns on their backs.  They themselves were now so
emaciated they were making but a few miles a day.  Their moccasins had
been worn to tatters, and all three looked more like skeletons than
living men.  Then, the third week of November, Frobisher could go no
farther, and the servants' strength failed.  Building a fire in a
sheltered place for their master, the two faithful fellows left Frobisher
somewhere west of Lake Winnipeg.  Two days later they crept into a
Northwest post too weak to speak, and handed the Northwesters a note
scrawled by Frobisher, asking them to send a rescue party.  Frobisher was
found lying across the ashes of the fire.  Life was extinct.


In 1820 the union of the companies put an end to the ruinous and criminal
struggle.  George Simpson, afterwards knighted, {406} who has been sent
to look over matters in Athabasca, is appointed governor, and Nicholas
Garry, one of the London directors, comes out to appoint the officers of
the united companies to their new districts.  The scene is one for artist
brush,--the last meeting of the partners at Fort William, Hudson's Bay
men and Nor'westers, such deadly enemies they would not speak, sitting in
the great dining hall, glowering at each other across tables: George
Simpson at one end of the tables, pompously dressed in ruffles and satin
coat and silk breeches, vainly endeavoring to keep up suave conversation;
Nicholas Garry at the other end of the table, also very pompous and
smooth, but with a look on his face as if he were sitting above a powder
mine, the Highland pipers dressed in tartans, standing at each end of the
hall, filling the room with the drone and the skurl of the bagpipes.


By the union of the companies both sides avoided proving their rights in
the law courts.  Most important of all, the Hudson's Bay Company escaped
proving its charter valid; for the charter applied only to Hudson Bay and
adjacent lands "not occupied by other Christian powers"; but on the union
taking place, the British government granted to the new Hudson's Bay
Company license of exclusive monopoly to _all_ the Indian territory,
meaning (1) Hudson Bay Country, (2) the interior, (3) New Caledonia as
well as Oregon.  In fact, the union left the fur traders ten times more
strongly intrenched than before.  {407} By the new arrangement Dr. John
McLoughlin was appointed chief factor of the western territories known as
Oregon and New Caledonia.  When the War of 1812 closed, treaty provided
that Oregon should be open to the joint occupancy of English and American
traders till the matter of the western boundary could be finally settled.
Oregon roughly included all territory between the Columbia and the
Spanish fort at San Francisco, namely, Washington, Oregon, Northern
California, Idaho, Utah, Nevada, parts of Montana and Wyoming.  It was
cheaper to send provisions round by sea to the fur posts of New
Caledonia, in modern British Columbia, than across the continent by way
of the Saskatchewan; so McLoughlin's district also included all the
territory far as the Russian possessions in Alaska.

This part of the Hudson's Bay Company's history belongs to the United
States rather than Canada, but it is interesting to remember that just as
the French fur traders explored the Mississippi far south as the Gulf of
Mexico, so English fur traders first explored the western states far
south as New Spain.  This western field was perhaps the most picturesque
of all the Hudson's Bay Company's possessions.

Fort Vancouver, ninety miles inland from the sea on the Columbia, was the
capital of this transmontane kingdom, and yearly till 1846 the fur
brigades set out from Fort Vancouver two or three hundred strong by pack
horse and canoe.  Well-known officers became regular leaders of the
different brigades.  There was Ross, who led the Rocky Mountain Brigade
inland across the Divide to the buffalo ranges of Montana.  There was
Ogden, son of the Chief Justice in Montreal, who led the Southern Brigade
up Snake River to Salt Lake and the Nevada desert and Humboldt River and
Mt. Shasta, all of which regions except Salt Lake he was first to
discover.  There was Tom McKay, son of the McKay who had crossed to the
Pacific with MacKenzie, who, dressed as a Spanish cavalier, led the
pack-horse brigades down the coast past the Rogue River Indians and the
Klamath Lakes to San Francisco, where Dr. Glen Rae had opened a fort for
the Hudson's Bay Company.  {408} Then there was the New Caledonia
Brigade, two hundred strong, which set out from Fort Vancouver up the
Columbia in canoes to the scream of the bagpipes through the rocky
canyons of the river.  Close to the boundary, shift was made from canoe
to pack horse, and, leaving the Columbia, the brigade struck up the
Okanogan Valley to Kamloops, bound for the bridle trail up Fraser River.
This brigade, in later days, was under Douglas, who became the knighted
governor of British Columbia.  Tricked out in gay ribbons, the long file
of pack ponies, two hundred with riders, two hundred more with packs,
moved slowly along the forest trail with a drone as of bees humming in
midsummer.  So well did ponies know the way that riders often fell
asleep, to be suddenly jarred awake by the horses jamming against a tree,
or running under a low branch to brush riders off, or hurdle-jumping over
windfall.  Each of these brigades has its own story, and each story would
fill a book.  For instance, Glen Rae at San Francisco has a difficult
mission.  The company has a plan to take over the debts of Mexico to
British capitalists and exchange them for California.  Glen Rae is sent
to watch matters, but he commits the blunder of furnishing arms to the
losing side of a revolution.  The debt for the arms remains unpaid.  Glen
Rae suicides, and the company withdraws from California.

[Illustration: JOHN MCLOUGHLIN]

{409} Presently come American settlers and missionaries over the
mountains.  The American government delays settling that treaty of joint
occupancy, for the more American settlers that come, the stronger will be
the American claim to the territory.  McLoughlin helps the settlers who
would have starved without his aid, and McLoughlin receives such sharp
censure from his company for this that he resigns.  When the American
settlers set up a provisional government, the foolish cry is raised, "54,
40 or fight," which means the Americans claim all the way up to Alaska,
and for this there is no warrant either through their own occupation or
discovery.  The boundary is compromised by the Treaty of Oregon in 1846
at the 49th parallel.

When settlers come, fur-bearing animals leave.  Long ago the Hudson's Bay
Company had foreseen the end and moved the capital of its Pacific Empire
up to Victoria.  A string of fur posts extends up Fraser River to New



FROM 1820 TO 1867

How the Family Compact worked--The old order changeth--"Loyalty
cry"--Gourley driven mad--Richmond's tragic death--Patriots of the
plow--Defeat of patriots--Duncombe's escape--Execution of
patriots--Bloodshed in Quebec--Chenier's tragic death--Durham gives
Canada a Magna Charta--Confederation--What of the future

It will be recalled that on the coming of the United Empire Loyalists
to Canada, the form of government was changed by the Constitutional Act
of 1791, dividing the country into Upper and Lower Canada, the
government of each province to consist of a governor, the legislative
council, and the assembly.  Unfortunately, self-government for the
colonies was not yet a recognized principle of English rule.  While the
assemblies of the two provinces were elected by the people, the power
of the assemblies was practically a blank, for the governor and council
were the real rulers, and they were appointed by the Crown, which meant
Downing Street, which meant in turn that the two Canadas were regarded
as the happy hunting ground for incompetent office seekers of the great
English parties.  From the governor general to the most insignificant
postal clerk, all were appointed from Downing Street.  Influence, not
merit, counted, which perhaps explains why one can count on the fingers
of one hand the number of governors and lieutenants from 1791 to 1841
who were worthy of their trust and did not disgrace their position by
blunders that were simply notorious.  Prevost's disgraceful retreat
from Lake Champlain in the War of 1812 is a typical example of the
mischief a political jobber can work when placed in position of trust;
but the life-and-death struggle of the war prevented the people turning
their attention to questions of misgovernment, and it is hardly an
exaggeration to say that the Act of 1791 reduced Canadian affairs to
the chaos of a second Ireland and retarded the progress of the country
for a century.

It has become customary for English writers to slur over the disorders
of 1837 as the results of the ignorant rabble following {411} the bad
advice of the hot-heads, MacKenzie and Papineau; but it is worth
remembering that everything the rabble fought for, and hanged for, has
since been incorporated in Canada's constitution as the very woof and
warp of responsible government.

Let us see how the system worked out in detail.

After the War of 1812 Prevost dies before court-martial can pronounce
on his misconduct at Plattsburg, and Sir Gorden Drummond, the hero of
Fort Erie's siege, is sworn in.

Canada is governed from Downing Street, and it is my Lord Bathurst's
brilliant idea that forever after the war there shall be a belt of
twenty miles left waste forest and prairie between Canada and the
United States, presumably to prevent democracy rolling across the
northern boundary.  Fortunately the rough horse sense of the
frontiersman is wiser than the wisdom of the British statesman, and
settlement continues along the boundary in spite of Bathurst's
brilliant idea.

Those who fought in the War of 1812 are to be rewarded by grants of
land,--rewarded, of course, by the Crown, which means the Governor; but
the Governor must listen to the advice of his councilors, who are
appointed for life; and to the heroes of 1812 the councilors grant
fifty acres apiece, while to themselves the said councilors vote grants
of land running from twenty thousand to eighty thousand acres apiece.

After the war it is agreed that neither Canada nor the United States
shall keep war vessels on the lakes, except such cruisers as shall be
necessary to maintain order among the fisheries; but the credit for
this wise arrangement does not belong to the councils at Toronto or
Quebec, for the suggestions came from Washington.

As the legislative councilors are appointed for life, they control
enormous patronage, recommending all appointments to government
positions and meeting any applicants for office, who are outside the
"_family_" ring, with the curt refusal that has become famous for its
insolence, "_no one but a gentleman_."

Judges are appointed by favor.  So are local magistrates.  So are
collectors at the different ports of entry.  Smaller cities like {412}
Kingston are year after year refused incorporation, because
incorporation would confer self-government, and that would oust members
of the "_family compact_" who held positions in these places.

Officeholders are responsible to the Crown only, not to the people.
Therefore when Receiver General Caldwell of Quebec does away with
96,000 pounds, or two years' revenue of Lower Canada, he accounts for
the defalcation to his friends with the explanation of unlucky
investments, and goes scot free.

Quebec is a French province, but appointments are made in England; so
that out of 71,000 pounds paid to its civil servants 58,000 pounds go
to the English officeholders, 13,000 pounds to French; out of 36,000
pounds paid to judges only 8,000 pounds go to the French.

And in Upper Canada, Ontario, it was even worse.  In Quebec there was
always the division of French against English, and Catholic against
Protestant; but in Upper Canada "_the family compact_" of councilors
against commoners was a solid and unbroken ring.  When the assembly
raises objections to some items of expense sent down by the council,
writes Lieutenant Governor Simcoe in high dudgeon, "I will send the
rascals," meaning the commoners, "packing about their business," and he
prorogues the House.

Not all the governors and their lieutenants are as foolishly blind to
the faults of the system as Simcoe of Ontario.  Sir John Sherbrooke of
Quebec, who succeeds Drummond in Lower Canada, knows very well he is
surrounded by a pack of thieves; but they are his councilors, appointed
for life, and there he is, bound to abide by their advice.
Nevertheless, he kicks over traces vigorously now and then, like the
old war horse that he is.  The commissary general comes to him with
word that 600 pounds is missing from the military chest, and he needs a
warrant for search.

"Search, indeed!" roars Sir John.  "There's not the slightest need!
Whenever there is a robbery in _your_ department, it is among
yourselves!  Go and find it!"



Curious it is how good men reared in the old school, where the masses
exist for the benefit of the classes and the governed are to be allowed
to exist only by favor of those who govern--curious how good men fail
to read the sign of the times.  Colonel Tom Talbot's settlement in West
Ontario has, by 1832, increased to 50,000 people, and the mad
harum-scarum of court days is becoming an old man.  Talbot has been a
legislative councilor for life, but it is not on record that he ever
attended the council in Toronto.  Still he views with high disfavor
this universal discontent with "being governed."  The secret meetings
held to agitate for responsible government, Tom Talbot regards as "a
pestilence" leading on to the worst disease from which humanity can
suffer, namely, democracy.  The old bear stirs uneasily in his lair, as
reports come in of louder and louder demands that the colony shall be
_permitted to govern itself_.  What would become of kings and colonels
and land grants by special favor, if colonies governed themselves?
Colonel Tom Talbot doffs his homespun and his coon cap, and he dons the
satin ruffles of twenty-five years ago, and he mounts his steed and he
rides pompously forth to the market place of St. Thomas Town on St.
George's Day of 1832.  Bands play; flags wave; the country people from
twenty miles round come riding to town.  Banners {414} inscribed with
"Loyalty to the Constitution" are carried at the head of parades.  The
venerable old colonel is greeted with burst after burst of shouting as
he comes prancing on horseback up the hill.  The band plays "the
British Grenadiers."  The Highland bagpipes skurl a welcome.  Then the
old man mounts the rostrum and delivers a speech that ought to be
famous as an exposition of good old Tory doctrine:

Some black sheep have slipped into my flock, and very black they are,
and what is worse, they have got the rot, a distemper not known in this
settlement till some I shall call for short "rebels" began their work
of darkness under cover of organizing Blanked Cold Water Drinking
Societies, where they meet at night to communicate their poisonous
schemes and circulate the infection and delude the unwary!  Then they
assumed a more daring aspect under mask of a grievance petition, which,
when it was placed before me, I would not take the trouble to read,
being aware it was trash founded on falsehood, fabricated to create

At the end of a half hour's tirade, of which these lines are a sample,
the good old Tory raised his hands, and in the words of the Church's
benediction blessed his people and prayed Heaven to keep their minds
untainted by sedition.

Looking back less than a century, it is almost impossible to believe
that the colonel's speech--it cannot be called reasoning--was applauded
to the echo and regarded as a masterly justification of people "being
governed" rather than governing themselves.

Perhaps, after all, it was not so much the Constitution of Canada that
caused the conflict as the clash between the old-time feudalism and the
spirit of modern, aggressive democracy.  The United States _fought_
this question out in 1776.  Canada _wrestled_, it cannot be called a
_fight_, the same question out in 1837.

It is necessary to give one or two cases of individual persecution to
understand how the disorders flamed to open rebellion.

One Matthews, an officer of the 1812 War, living on a pension, had
incurred the distrust of the governing ring by expressing sympathy with
the agitators.  Now to be an agitator was bad enough in the eyes of
"_the family compact_," but for one of their {415} own social circle to
sympathize with the outsiders was, to the snobocracy clique of the
little city of ten thousand at Toronto, almost an unpardonable sin.
Such sins were punished by social ostracism, by the grand dames of
Toronto not inviting the officer's wife to social functions, by the
families of the upper clique literally freezing the sinner's children
out of the foremost circles of social life.  Many a Canadian family is
proud to trace lineage back to some old lady of this tempestuous
period, whose only claim to recognition is that she waged petty
persecution against the heroes of Canadian progress.  Now the annals of
the times do not record that this special sinner's wife and children so
suffered.  At all events Matthews' spirits were not cast down by social
snobbery.  He continued to sympathize with the agitators.  The "_family
compact_" bided their time, and their time came a few months later,
when a company of American actors came to Toronto.  A band concert had
been given.  When the British national air struck up, all hats were
off.  Then some one called for "Yankee Doodle," and in compliment to
the visitors, when the American air struck up, Matthews shouted out for
"hats off."  For this sin the legislative council ordered the
lieutenant governor to cut off Matthews' pension, and, to the
everlasting shame of Sir Peregrine Maitland, the advice was taken,
though Matthews had twenty-seven years of service to his credit.
Matthews appealed to England, and his pension was restored, so that in
this case "_the family compact_" for political reasons was pretending
to be more British than Great Britain.  It was not to be the last
occasion on which "the loyalty cry" was to be used as a political dodge.

The persecution of Robert Gourlay was yet more outrageous.

He had come to Canada soon after the War of 1812, and in the course of
collecting statistics for a book on the colony was quick to realize how
Canada's progress was being literally gagged by the policy of the
ruling clique.  Gourlay attacked the local magistrates in the press.
He pointed out that the land grants were notorious.  He advocated
bombarding the evils from two sides at once, by appealing to the home
government and by {416} holding local conventions of protest.  The pass
to which things had come may be realized by the attitude of the
council.  It held that the colony must hold no communications with the
imperial government except through the Governor General; in other
words, individual appeals not passing through the hands of the
legislative council were to be regarded as illegal.  It is sad to have
to acknowledge that such a palpably dishonest measure was ever
countenanced by people in their right minds.  But "_the family
compact_" went a step farther.  It passed an order forbidding meetings
to discuss public grievances.  This part of Canada's story reads more
like Russia than America, and shows to what length men will go when
special privileges rather than equal rights prevail in a country.
Gourlay met these infamous measures by penning some witty doggerel,
headed "Gagged, gagged, by Jingo!"  The editor in whose paper Gourlay's
writings had appeared, was arrested, and the offending sheet was
compelled to suspend.  Gourlay himself is arrested for sedition and
libel at least four times, but each time the jury acquits him.  At any
cost the governing clique must get rid of this scribbling fellow, whose
pen voices the rising discontent.  An alien act, passed before the War
of 1812, compelling the deportation of seditious persons, is revived.
Under the terms of the act Gourlay is arrested, tried, and sentenced to
be exiled, but Gourlay declares he is not an alien.  He is a British
subject, and he refuses to leave the country.  He is thrown in jail at
Niagara, and for a year and a half left in a moldy, close cell.  One
dislikes to write that this outrage on British justice was perpetrated
under Chief Justice Powell, whose failure to obtain decisions from the
jury in the Red River trials brought down such harsh criticism on the
bench.  At the end of twenty months Gourlay is again hauled before the
jury and sentenced to deportation on pain of death if he refuses.  He
was calmly asked if he had anything to say, if there were any reason
why sentence should not be pronounced.

"Anything . . . to . . . say?  Any reason . . . why . . .
sentence . . . should not be pronounced?"  From 1818 to 1820 {417}
Gourlay had been having things "to say," had been giving good and
sufficient reasons why sentence should not be pronounced!  The question
is repeated: "Robert Gourlay stand up!  Have you anything to say?"  The
court waits, Chief Justice Powell, bewigged and wearing his grandest
manner, all unconscious that the scene is to go down to history with
blot of ignominy against _his_ name, not Gourlay's.

Gourlay's face twitches, and he breaks into shrieks of maniacal
laughter.  The petty persecutions of a provincial tyranny have driven a
man, who is true patriot, out of his mind.  As Gourlay drops out of
Canada's story here, it may be added that the English government later
pronounced the whole trial an outrage, and Gourlay was invited back to

If at this stage a man had come to Canada as governor, big enough and
just enough to realize that colonies had some rights, there might have
been remedy; for the imperial government, eager to right the wrong, was
misled by the legislative councilors, and all at sea as to the source
of the trouble.  While men were being actually driven out of Canada by
the governing ring on the charge of disloyalty, the colonial minister
of England was sending secret dispatches to the Governor General,
instructing him plainly that if independence was what Canada wanted,
then the mother country, rather than risk a second war with the United
States, or press conclusions with the Canadas themselves, would
willingly cede independence.  It is as well to be emphatic and clear on
this point.  _It was not the tyranny of England that caused the
troubles of 1837_.  It was the dishonesty of the ruling rings at Quebec
and Toronto, and this dishonesty was possible because of the
Constitutional Act of 1791.

Unfortunately, just when imperial statesmen of the modern school were
needed, governors of the old school were appointed to Canada.  After
Sir John Sherbrooke came the Duke of Richmond to Quebec, and his
son-in-law, Sir Peregrine Maitland, as lieutenant governor to Ontario.
Men of more courtly manners never graced the vice-regal chairs of
Quebec and Toronto.  {418} Richmond, who was some fifty years of age,
had won notoriety in his early days by a duel with a prince of the
blood royal, honor on both sides being satisfied by Richmond shooting
away a curl from the royal brow; but presto, an Irish barrister takes
up the quarrel by challenging Richmond to a second duel for having
dared to fight a prince; and here Richmond satisfies claims of honor by
a well-directed ball aimed to wound, not kill.  Long years after, when
the duke became viceroy of Ireland, the Irishman appeared at one of
Richmond's state balls.

"Hah," laughed the barrister, "the last time we met, your Grace gave
_me_ a ball."

"Best give you a brace of 'em now," retorted the witty Richmond; and he
sent his quondam foe invitation to two more balls.

Richmond it was who gave the famous ball before the defeat of Napoleon
at Waterloo.  The story of his daughter's love match with Sir Peregrine
Maitland is of a piece with the rest of the romance in Richmond's life.
Richmond and Maitland had been friends in the army, but when the duke
began to observe that his daughter, Lady Sarah, and the younger man
were falling in love, he thought to discourage the union with a poor
man by omitting Maitland's name from invitation lists.  When Lady Sarah
came downstairs to a ball she surmised that Maitland had not been
invited, and, withdrawing from the assembled guests, drove to her
lover's apartments.  She married Maitland without her father's consent,
but a reconciliation had been patched up.  Father and son-in-law now
came to Canada as governor and lieutenant governor.

The military and social life of both unfitted them to appreciate the
conditions in Canada.  Socially both were the lions of the hour.  As a
man and gentleman Richmond was simply adored, and Quebec's love of all
the pomp of monarchy was glutted to the full.  No more distinguished
governor ever played host in the old Château St. Louis; but as rulers,
as pacifiers, as guides of the ship of state, Richmond and Maitland
were dismal failures.  To them Canada's demand for responsible {419}
government seemed the rallying cry of an impending republic.  "We must
overcome democracy or it will overcome us," pronounced Richmond.  He
failed to see that resistance to the demand for self-government would
bring about the same results in Canada as resistance had brought about
in the United States, and he could not guess--for the thing was new in
the world's history--that the grant of self-government would but bind
the colony the closer to the mother land.


It is sad to write of two such high-minded, well-intentioned rulers,
that the worst acts of misgovernment in Canada took place in their

Richmond's death was as unusual as his life.  Two accounts are given of
the cause.  One states that he permitted a pet dog to touch a cut in
his face.  The other account has it that he was bitten by a tame fox at
a fair in Sorel, and the date of Richmond's death, late in August of
1819, exactly two months from the time he was bitten at Sorel,--which
is the length of time that hydrophobia takes to develop in a grown
person,--would seem to substantiate the latter story.  He was traveling
on horseback from Perth to Richmond, on the Ottawa, and had complained
of feeling poorly.  A small stream had to be crossed.  The sight of the
stream brought the strange water delirium to Richmond, when he begged
his attendants to take him quickly to Montreal.  It need scarcely be
explained here that hydrophobia {420} is not caused by lack of water,
but by contagious transmission.  The feeling passed, as the first
terrors of the disease are usually spasmodic, and the Governor was
proceeding through the woods with his attendants, when he suddenly
broke away deliriously, leading them a wild race to a farm shed.  There
he died during the night, crying out as the lucid intervals broke the
delirium of his agonies: "For shame! for shame Lenox!  Richmond, be a
man!  Can you not bear it?"

Public affairs are meanwhile passing from bad to worse.  William Lyon
MacKenzie has become leader of the agitators in his newspaper, _The
Advocate_, of Toronto.  A band of young vandals, sons of the ruling
clique, wreck his newspaper office and throw the type into Toronto Bay,
but MacKenzie recovers $3000 damages and goes on agitating.  Four times
he is publicly expelled from the House, and four times he is returned
by the electors.  What are they asking, these agitators, branded as
rebels, expelled from the assembly, in some cases cast in prison by the
councilors, in others threatened with death?

  Control of public revenues.
  Reform in the land system.
  Municipal rights for towns and cities.
  The exclusion of judges from Parliament.
  That the council be directly responsible to the people
    rather than the Crown.

Since 1818 the reformers have been agitating to have wrongs righted,
and for nineteen years the clique has prevented official inquiry,
gagged the press, bludgeoned conventions out of existence, and thrown
leaders of opposition in prison.

MacKenzie now makes the mistake of publishing in his papers a letter
from the English radical Hume, advocating the freedom of Canada "from
the baneful domination of the mother country."  At once, with a jingo
whoop, the loyalty cry is emitted by "_the family compact_."  Is not
this what they have been telling the Governor from the first,--these
reformers are republicans in {421} disguise?  By trickery and
manipulation they swing the next election so that MacKenzie is
defeated.  From that moment MacKenzie's tone changed.  It may be that,
losing all hope of reform, he became a republican.  If this were
treason, then the English ministers, who were advocating the same
remedy, were guilty of the same treason.  With MacKenzie, secretly and
openly, are a host of sympathizers,--Dr. Rolph, Tom Talbot's old
friend, come up from the London district to practice medicine in
Toronto, and Van Egmond, who has helped to settle the Huron Tract of
the Canada Company, founded by John Galt, the novelist, and some four
thousand others whose names MacKenzie has on a list in his carpet bag.


All the autumn of 1837 Fitzgibbons, now commander of the troops in
Toronto, hears vague rumors of farmers secretly drilling, of workmen
extemporizing swords out of scythes, of old soldiers furbishing up
their arms of the 1812 War.  What does it mean?  Sir Francis Bond Head,
the new governor of Ontario, refuses to believe his own ears.  Neither
does _the family compact_ realize that there is any danger to their
long tenure of power.  They affect to sneer at these poor patriots of
the plow, little dreaming that the rights which these poor patriots of
the scythe swords are burning to defend, will, by and by, be the pride
of England's colonial system.  The story of plot and counter plot
cannot be told in detail here; it is too {422} long.  But on the night
of Monday, December 4, Toronto wakes up to a wild ringing of college
bells.  The rebel patriots have collected at Montgomery's Tavern
outside Toronto, and are advancing on the city.

Poor MacKenzie's plans have gone all awry.  Four thousand patriots had
pledged themselves to assemble at the tavern on December 7, but Dr.
Rolph, or some other friend in the city, sends word that the date has
been discovered.  The only hope of seizing the city is for them to come
sooner; and MacKenzie arrives at the tavern on December 3, with only a
few hundred followers, who have neither food nor firearms; and I doubt
much if they had even definite plans; of such there are no records.
Before Van Egmond comes from Seaforth, doubt and dissension and
distrust of success depress the insurgents; and it does n't help their
spirits any to have four Toronto scouts break through their lines in
the dark and back again with word of their weakness, though they plant
a fatal bullet neatly in the back of one poor loyalist.  If they had
advanced promptly on the 4th, as planned, they might have given Sir
Francis Bond Head and Fitzgibbons a stiff tussle for possession of the
city, for Toronto's defenders at this time numbered scarcely three
hundred; but during the days MacKenzie's followers delayed north of
Yonge Street, Allan McNab came up from Hamilton with more troops.  By
Wednesday, the 6th, there were twelve hundred loyalist troops in
Toronto; and noon of the 7th, out marches the loyalist army by way of
Yonge Street, bands playing, flags flying, horses prancing under
Fitzgibbons and McNab.  It was a warm, sunny day.  From the windows of
Yonge Street women waved handkerchiefs and cheered.  At street corners
the rabble shouted itself hoarse, just as it would have cheered
MacKenzie had he come down Yonge Street victorious.

MacKenzie's sentries had warned the insurgents of the loyalists'
coming.  MacKenzie was for immediate advance.  Van Egmond thought it
stark madness for five hundred poorly armed men to meet twelve hundred
troopers in pitched battle; but it was too late now for stark madness
to retreat.  The loyalist {423} bands could be heard from Rosedale; the
loyalists' bayonets could be seen glittering in the sun.  MacKenzie
posted his men a short distance south of the tavern in some woods; one
hundred and fifty on one side of the road west of Yonge Street, one
hundred on the other side.  The rest of the insurgents, being without
arms, did not leave the rendezvous.  In the confusion and haste the
tragic mistake was made of leaving MacKenzie's carpet bag with the list
of patriots at the tavern.  This gave the loyalists a complete roster
of the agitators' names.

[Illustration: ALLAN McNAB]

Fifteen minutes later it was all over with MacKenzie.  The big guns of
the Toronto troops shelled the woods, killing one patriot rebel and
wounding eleven, four fatally.  In answer, only a clattering spatter of
shots came from the rebel side.  The patriots were in headlong flight
with the mounted men of Toronto in pursuit.

It was over with MacKenzie, but, as the sequence of events will show,
it was not all over with the cause.  A book of soldiers' yarns might be
told of hairbreadth escapes, the aftermath of the rebellion.  Knowing
his side was doomed to defeat, Dr. Rolph tried to escape from Toronto.
He was stopped by a loyalist sentry, but explained he was leaving the
city to visit a patient.  Farther on he had been arrested by a loyalist
picket, when luckily a young doctor who had attended Rolph's medical
lectures, all unconscious of MacKenzie's plot, vouched for his {424}
loyalty.  Riding like a madman all that night, Rolph reached Niagara
and escaped to the American frontier.  A reward of 1000 pounds had been
offered for MacKenzie dead or alive.  He had waited only till his
followers fled, when he mounted his big bay horse and galloped for the
woods, pursued by Fitzgibbons' men.  The big bay carried him safely to
the country, where he wandered openly for four days.  It speaks volumes
for the stanch fidelity of the country people to the cause which
MacKenzie represented, that during these wanderings he was unbetrayed,
spite of the 1000 pounds reward.  Finally he too succeeded in crossing
Niagara.  Van Egmond was captured north of Yonge Street, but died from
disease contracted in his prison cell before he could be tried.  Lount,
another of the leaders, had succeeded in reaching Long Point, Lake
Erie.  With a fellow patriot, a French voyageur, and a boy, he started
to cross Lake Erie in an open boat.  It was wintry, stormy weather.
For two days and two nights the boat tossed, a plaything of the waves,
the drenching spray freezing as it fell, till the craft was almost
ice-logged.  For food they had brought only a small piece of meat, and
this had frozen so hard that their numbed hands could not break it.
Weakening at each oar stroke, they at last saw the south shore of Lake
Erie rise on the sky line; but before the close-muffled refugees had
dared to hope for safety on the American side, a strong south wind had
sprung up that drove the boat back across the lake towards Grand River.
To remain exposed longer meant certain death.  They landed, were
mistaken for smugglers, and thrown into jail, where Lount was at once

In West Ontario one Dr. Duncombe had acted as MacKenzie's lieutenant.
Allan McNab had come west with six hundred men to suppress the
rebellion.  Realizing the hopelessness of further resistance, Duncombe
had tried to save his men by ordering them to disperse to their homes.
He himself, with his white horse, took to the woods, where he lay in
hiding all day--and it was a Canadian December--and foraged at night
for berries and roots.  Judge Ermatinger gives the graphic story of
{425} Duncombe's escape.  Starvation drove him to the house of a
friend.  The friend was out, and when the wife asked who he was,
Duncombe laid his revolver on the table and made answer, "I am
Duncombe; and I must have food."  Here he lay disguised so completely
with nightcap, nightdress, and all, as the visiting grandmother of the
family, that loyalists who saw his white horse and came in to search
the house, looked squarely at the recumbent figure beneath the
bedclothes and did not recognize him.  Duncombe at last reached his
sister's home near London.

"Don't you know me?" he asked, standing in the open door, waiting for
her recognition.  In the few weeks of exposure and pursuit his hair had
turned snow-white.

His friends suggested that he cross to the American frontier dressed as
a woman, and the disguise was so perfect, curls of his sister's hair
bobbing from beneath his bonnet, that two loyalist soldiers gallantly
escorted the lady's sleigh across unsafe places in the ice.  Duncombe
waited till he was well on the American side, and his escorts on the
way back to Sarnia.  Then he emitted a yell over the back of the
cutter, "Go tell your officers you have just helped Dr. Duncombe

Having lost the fight for a cause which events have since justified, it
is not surprising that the patriots on the American frontier now lost
their heads.  They formed organizations from Detroit to Vermont for the
invasion of Canada and the establishment of a republic.  These bands
were known as "Hunter's Lodges."  Rolph and Duncombe repudiated
connection with them, but MacKenzie was head and heart for armed
invasion from Buffalo.  Space forbids the story of these raids.  They
would fill a book with such thrilling tales as make up the border wars
of Scotland.

The tumultuous year of 1837 closed with the burning of the _Caroline_.
MacKenzie had taken up quarters on Navy Island in Niagara River.  The
_Caroline_, an American ship, was being employed to convey guns and
provisions to the insurgents' camp.  On the Canadian side of the river
camped Allan McNab with {426} twenty-five hundred loyalist troops.
Looking across the river with field glasses, McNab sees the boat
landing field guns on Navy Island for MacKenzie.

"I say," exclaims the future Sir Allan, "this won't do!  Can't you cut
that vessel out, Drew?" addressing a young officer.

"Nothing easier," answers Drew.

"Do it, then," orders McNab.

In spite of the fact "nothing was easier," Drew's men came near
disaster on their midnight escapade.  The river below Navy Island was
three miles wide, and only a mile and a half from the rapids above the
Falls, with a current like a mill race.  Secretly seven boats, with
four men in each, set out at half past eleven, a few friends on the
river bank wishing Drew Godspeed.  Out from shore Drew draws his boats
together, and tells the men the perilous task they have to do: if any
one wishes to go back let him do so now.  Not a man speaks.  Halfway
across, firing from the island drives two of the boats back.  The rest
get under shadow from the bright moonlight and go on.  The roar of the
Falls now became deafening, and some of the rowers called out they were
being drawn down the center of the river astern.  Drew fastens his eyes
on a light against the American shore to judge of their progress.  For
a moment, though the men were rowing with all their might, the light
ashore and the boats in mid-river seemed to remain absolutely still.
Finally the boats gained an oar's length.  Then a mighty pull, and all
forge ahead.  A strip of land hides approach to the _Caroline_.  The
Canadian boatmen lie in hiding till the moon goes down, then glide in
on the _Caroline_, when Drew mounts the decks.  Three unarmed men are
found on the shore side.  Drew orders them to land.  One fires
point-blank; Drew slashes him down with a single saber cut.  The rest
of the crew are roused from sleep and sent ashore.  The _Caroline_ is
set on fire in four places.  She is moored to the shore ice; axes chop
her free.  She is adrift; Drew the last to jump from her flaming decks
to his place in the small boats.  The flames are seen from the Canadian
side, and huge bonfires light up the Canadian shore; by their gleam
{427} Drew steers back for McNab's army, and is welcomed with cheers
that split the welkin.  Slowly the flaming vessel drifted down the
channel to the Falls.  Suddenly the lights went out; the _Caroline_ had
either sunk on a reef or gone over the Falls.  One man had been killed
on the decks.  As the vessel was American, and had been raided in
American ports, the episode raised an international dispute that might
in another mood have caused war.

Lount and Matthews pay for the rebellion on the gallows, upon which the
imperial government expressed regret that the Toronto Executive "found
such severity necessary."  Later, when "the Hunters' Lodges" raid
Prescott, and Van Shoultz, the Polish leader, with nine others, is
executed at Kingston, a great revulsion of feeling takes place against
_the family compact_.  The execution of the patriots did more for their
cause than all their efforts of twenty years.  The Canadian people had
supported the agitators up to the point of armed rebellion.  That gave
British blood pause, for the Britisher reveres the law next to God; but
when the governing ring began to glut its vengeance under cloak of
loyalty that was another matter.  After the execution of Lount and
Matthews _the family compact_ could scarcely count a friend outside its
own circle in Upper Canada.  It is worth remembering that the young
lawyer who defended Van Shoultz in the trial at Kingston was a John A.
Macdonald, who later took foremost part in framing a new constitution
for Canada.

Affairs had gone faster in Quebec.  There the rebellion almost became
war.  Papineau was leader of the agitators,--Papineau, fiery,
impetuous, eloquent, followed by the bold boys in the bonnets blue,
marching the streets of Montreal singing revolutionary songs and
planting liberty trees.  In Lower Canada, too, things have come to the
pass where the agitators advocate armed resistance.  From the first, in
Quebec, the struggle has waged round two questions,--the exclusion of
the French from the council, and the right of the colony to spend its
own revenues; but boil down the ninety-two resolutions of 1834, and the
demands {428} of the agitators in Lower Canada are the same as in Upper
Canada, for complete self-government.  A dozen clashes of authority
lead up to the final outbreak.  For instance, the House elects
Papineau, the agitator, speaker.  The Governor General refuses to
recognize him, and Parliament is dissolved.

Failing to obtain redress by constitutional methods, the agitators now
advocate the right of a colony to abolish government unsuited to it.
The constitutional party takes alarm and organizes volunteers.
Papineau's party, early in 1837, begin violently advocating that all
French magistrates resign their commissions from the English
government.  On Richelieu River and up in Two Mountains, north of
Montreal, are the strongholds of the agitators, where men have been
drilling, and the boys in the bonnets blue rioting through the villages
to the great scandal of parish priests.

[Illustration: LOUIS J. PAPINEAU]

There are riots in Montreal early in November of 1837, and "the Sons of
Liberty" are chased through the town.  Then in the third week of
November a troop of Montreal cavalry is sent to St. John's to arrest
three agitators, who have been threatening a magistrate for refusing to
resign his commission.  The agitators are arrested and handcuffed, and
at three in the morning the troops are moving along across country
towards Longueuil with the prisoners in a wagon, when suddenly three
hundred armed men rise on either side of the road to the fore.  Shots
are exchanged.  In the confusion the prisoners jump from the wagon.
This is not resistance to authority.  It is open rebellion.  Papineau
intrusts the management of affairs in St. Eustache, north of Montreal,
to Girod, a Swiss, and to {429} Dr. Chenier, a local patriot.  Papineau
himself and Dr. Nelson and O'Callaghan are down on the Richelieu at St.

Take the Richelieu region first.  Colonel Gore is to strike up the
river southward to St. Denis.  Colonel Wetherell is to cross country
from Montreal and strike down the river north to St. Charles, thus
hemming in the insurgents between Gore on the north and himself on the
south.  There are eight hundred rebels at St. Denis, one hundred and
fifty armed, and twelve hundred at St. Charles.  Papineau and
O'Callaghan for safety's sake slip across the line to Swanton in
Vermont.  One could wish that, having led their faithful followers up
to the sticking point of stark madness, the agitators had remained
shoulder to shoulder with the brave fellows on the field.

Colonel Gore came from Montreal by boat to the mouth of the Richelieu.
At seven-thirty on the night of November 22 two hundred and fifty
troopers landed to march up the Richelieu road to St. Denis.  Rain
turning to sleet was falling in a deluge.  The roads were swimming
knee-deep in slush.  Bridges had been cut, and in the darkness the
loyalists had to diverge to fording places, which lengthened out the
march twenty-four miles.  At St. Denis was Dr. Nelson with the
agitators in a three-story stone house, windows bristling with muskets.
By dawn Papineau and O'Callaghan had fled, and at nine o'clock came
Colonel Gore's loyalist troopers, exhausted from the march, soaked to
the skin, their water-sagged clothes freezing in the cold wind.  The
loyalists went into the fight unfed, and with a whoop; but it is not
surprising that the peppering of bullets from the windows drove the
troopers back, and Gore's bugles sounded retreat.  Unaware of Gore's
defeat, one Lieutenant Weir has been sent across country with
dispatches.  He is captured and bound, and, in a futile attempt to
escape, shot and stabbed to death.

Wetherell comes down the river from Chambly with three hundred men.  He
finds St. Charles village protected by outworks of felled trees, and
the houses are literally loopholed with muskets; but Wetherell has
brought cannon along, and the cannon begin to sing on November 25.
Then Wetherell's {430} men charge through the village with leveled
bayonets.  The poor habitants scatter like frightened sheep; they
surrender; one hundred perish.  It is estimated that on both sides
three hundred are wounded, though some English writers give the list of
wounded as low as forty.  Messengers galloped with news of the
patriots' defeat at St. Charles to Dr. Nelson at St. Denis.  The
habitants fled to their homes.  Nelson was left without a follower.  He
escaped to the woods, and for two weeks wandered in the forests of the
boundary, exposed to cold and hunger, not daring to kindle a fire that
would betray him, afraid to let himself sleep for fear of freezing to
death.  He was captured near the Vermont line and carried prisoner to

[Illustration: SIR JOHN COLBORNE, GOVERNOR OF CANADA, 1838-1841]

And still worse fared the fortunes of war with the patriots north of
Montreal.  Their defense and defeat were almost pitiable in childish
ignorance of what war might mean.  Boys' marbles had been gathered
together for bullets.  Scythes were carried as swords, and old
flintlocks that had not seen service for twenty years were taken down
from the chimney places.  With their bonnets blue hanging down their
backs, rusty firearms over their shoulders, and the village fiddler
leading the march, one thousand "Sons of Liberty" had paraded the
streets of St. Eustache, singing, rollicking, speechifying, unconscious
as {431} children playing war that they were dancing to ruin above a
volcano.  Chenier, the beloved country doctor, is their leader.  Girod,
the Swiss, has come up to show them how to drill.  They take possession
of a newly built convent.  Then on Sunday, the 3d of December, comes
word of the defeat down on the Richelieu.  The moderate men plead with
Chenier to stop now before it is too late; but Chenier will not listen.
He knows the cause is right, and with the credulity or faith of a
simple child hopes some mad miracle will win the day.  Still he is much
moved; tears stream down his face.  Then on December 14 the church
bells ring a crazy alarm.  The troops are coming, two thousand of them
from Montreal under Sir John Colborne, the governor.  The insurgent
army melts like frost before the sun.  Less than one hundred men stand
by poor Chenier.  At eleven-thirty the troops sweep in at both ends of
the village at once, Girod, the Swiss commander, suicides in panic
flight.  Cooped up in the church steeple with the flames mounting
closer round them and the troopers whooping jubilantly outside, Chenier
and his eighty followers call out: "We are done!  We are sold!  Let us
jump!"  Chenier jumps from the steeple, is hit by the flying bullets,
and perishes as he falls.  His men cower back in the flaming steeple
till it falls with a crash into the burning ruins.  Amid the ash heap
are afterwards found the corpses of seventy-two patriots.  The troopers
take one hundred prisoners in the region, then set fire to all houses
where loyalist flags are not waved from the windows.

Matters have now come to such an outrageous pass that the British
government can no longer ignore the fact that the colony has been
goaded to desperation by the misgovernment of the ruling clique.  Lord
Durham is appointed special commissioner with extraordinary powers to
proceed to Canada and investigate the whole subject of colonial
government.  One may guess that the ruling clique were prepared to take
possession of the new commissioner and prime him with facts favorable
to their side; but Durham was not a man to be monopolized by any
faction.  {432} When he arrived, in May of 1838, he quickly gave proof
that he would follow his own counsels and choose his own councilors.
His first official declaration was practically an act of amnesty to the
rebels, eight only of the leading prisoners, among them Dr. Nelson,
being punished by banishment to Bermuda, the rest being simply expelled
from Canada.

This act was tantamount to a declaration that the rebels possessed some
rights and had suffered real grievances, and the governing rings in
both Toronto and Quebec took furious offense.  Complaints against
Durham poured into the English colonial office,--complaints, oddly
enough, that he had violated the spirit of the English Constitution by
sentencing subjects of the Crown without trial.  Though every one knew
that in Canada's turbulent condition trial by jury was impossible,
Durham's political foes in England took up the cry.  In addition to
political complaints were grudges against Durham for personal slight;
and it must be confessed the haughty earl had ridden roughshod over all
the petty prejudices and little dignities of the colonial magnates.
The upshot was, Durham resigned in high dudgeon and sailed for England
in November of 1838.


On his way home he dictated to his secretary, Charles Buller, the
famous report which is to Canada what the Magna Charta is to England or
the Declaration of Independence to the United States.  Without going
into detail, it may be said that it {433} recommended complete
self-government for the colonies.  As disorders had again broken out in
Canada, the English government hastened to embody the main
recommendations of Durham's report in the Union Act of 1840, which came
into force a year later.  By it Upper and Lower Canada were united on a
basis of equal representation each, though Quebec's population was six
hundred thousand to Ontario's five hundred thousand.  The colonies were
to have the entire management of their revenues and civil lists.  The
government was to consist of an Upper Chamber appointed by the Crown
for life, a representative assembly, and the governor with a cabinet of
advisers responsible to the assembly.

In all, more than seven hundred arrests had been made in Quebec
Province.  Of these all were released but some one hundred and thirty,
and the state trials resulted in sentence of banishment against fifty,
death to twelve.  In modern days it is almost impossible to realize the
degree of fanatical hatred generated by this half century of
misgovernment.  Declared one of the governing clique's official
newspapers in Montreal: "Peace must be maintained, even if we make the
country a solitude.  French Canadians must be swept from the face of
the earth. . . .  The empire must be respected, even at the cost of the
entire French Canadian people."  With such sentiments openly uttered,
one may surely say that the Constitutional Act of 1791 turned back the
pendulum of Canada's progress fifty years, and it certainly took fifty
more years to eradicate the bitterness generated by the era of

With the Upper and Lower Canadas united in a federation of two
provinces, it was a foregone conclusion that all parts of British North
America must sooner or later come into the fold.  It would be hard to
say from whom the idea of confederation of all the provinces first
sprang.  Purely as a theory the idea may be traced back as early as
1791.  The truth is, Destiny, Providence, or whatever we like to call
that great stream of concurrent events which carries men and nations
out to the ocean {434} highway of a larger life, forced British North
America into the Confederation of 1867.

In the first place, while the Union worked well in theory, it was
exceedingly difficult in practice.  Ontario and Quebec had equal
representation.  One was Protestant, the other Catholic; one French,
the other English.  Deadlocks, or, to use the slang of the street, even
tugs of war, were inevitable and continual.  All Ontario had to do to
thwart Quebec, or Quebec had to do to thwart Ontario, was to stand
together and keep the votes solid.  Coalition ministries proved a

In the second place, Ontario was practically dependent on the customs
duties collected at Quebec ports of entry for a provincial revenue.
The goods might be billed for Ontario; Quebec collected the tax.

Ontario was also dependent on Quebec for access to the sea.  Which
province was to pay for the system of canals being developed, and the
deepening of the St. Lawrence?

Then the Oregon Treaty of 1846 had actually brought a cloud of war on
the horizon.  In case of war, there was the question of defense.

Then railways had become a very live question.  Quebec wanted
connection with New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.  How was the cost of a
railroad to be apportioned?  Red River was agitating for freedom from
fur-trade monopoly.  How were railways to be built to Red River?

Ontario's population in twenty years jumped past the million mark.  Was
it fair that her million people should have only the same number of
representatives as Quebec with her half million?  Reformers of Ontario,
voiced by George Brown of _The Globe_, called for "Rep. by
Pop.,"--representation by population.

Civil war was raging in the United States, threatening to tear the
Union to tatters.  Why?  Because the balance of power had been left
with the states governments, and not enough authority centralized in
the federal government.  The lesson was not lost on struggling Canada.

{435} England's declaration of free trade brought the colonies face to
face with the need of some united action to raise revenue by tariff.

Then the Hudson's Bay Company's license of monopoly over the fur trade
of the west was nearing expiration.  Should the license be renewed for
another twenty years, or should Canada take over Red River as a new
province, which was the wish of the people both east and west?  And if
Canada did buy out the Hudson's Bay Company's vested rights, who was to
pay down the cost?

[Illustration: JOHN A. MACDONALD]

Lastly, was John A. Macdonald, the young lawyer who had pleaded the
defense of the patriot trials at Kingston in 1838, now a leading
politician of the United Canadas, weary of the hopeless deadlocks
between Ontario and Quebec.  With almost a sixth sense of divination in
reading the signs of the times in the trend of events, John A.
Macdonald saw that Canada's one hope of becoming a national power lay
in union,--confederation.  The same thing was seen by other leaders of
the day, by all that grand old guard known as the Fathers of
Confederation, sent from the different provinces to the conference at
Quebec in October of 1864.  There the outline of what is known as the
British North America Act was drafted,--in the main but an
amplification of Durham's scheme, made broad enough to receive all
{436} the provinces whenever they might decide to come into
Confederation.  The delegates then go back to be indorsed by their
provinces.  By some provinces the scheme is rejected.  Newfoundland is
not yet part of Canada, but by 1867 Confederation is an accomplished
fact.  By 1871 the new Dominion has bought out the rights of the
Hudson's Bay Company in the West and Manitoba joins the Eastern
Provinces.  By 1885 a railway links British Columbia with Nova Scotia.
By 1905 the great hunting field of the Saskatchewan prairies has been
divided into two new provinces, Saskatchewan and Alberta, each larger
than France.

Such is barest outline of Canada's past.  What of the future for this
Empire of the North?  That future is now in the making.  It lies in the
hands of the men and women who are living to-day.  In the past Canada's
makers dreamed greatly, and they dared greatly, and they took no heed
of impossibles, and they spent without stint of blood and happiness for
high aim.  When Canada lost ground in the progress of the nations, as
in the corrupt days of Bigot's rule during the French régime, or the
equally corrupt days of _the family compact_ after the Conquest, it was
because the altar fires of her ideals were allowed to burn low.

It has been said that the past is but a rear light marking the back
trail of the ship's passage.  Say rather it is the search light on the
ship's prow, pointing the way over the waters.

[Illustration: FATHERS OF CONFEDERATION, 1867.  (From the painting by
Robert Hariss)]

To-day Canada is in the very vanguard of the nations.  Her wheat fields
fill the granaries of the world; and to her ample borders come the
peoples of earth's ends, bringing tribute not of incense and
frankincense as of old, but of manhood and strength, of push and lift,
of fire and hope and enthusiasm and the daring that conquers all the
difficulties of life; bringing too, all the outworn vices of an Old
World, all the vicious instincts of the powers that prey in the Under
World.  Canada's prosperity is literally overflowing from a cornucopia
of super-abundant plenty.  Will her constitution, wrested from
political and civil strife; will her moral stamina, bred from the
heroism of an heroic past, stand the strain, the tremendous strain of
the {437} new conditions?  Will she assimilate the strange new
peoples--strange in thought and life and morals--coming to her borders?
Will she eradicate their vices like the strong body of a healthy
constitution throwing off disease; or will she be poisoned by the
toxins of vicious traits inherited from centuries of vicious living?
Will she remake the men, regenerate the aliens, coming to her hearth
fire; or will they drag her down to their degeneracy?  Above all, will
she stand the strain, the tremendous strain, of prosperity, and the
corruption that is attendant on prosperity?  _Quien sabe_?  Let him
answer who can; and the question is best answered by watching the
criminal calendar.  (Is the percentage of convictions as certain and
relentless as under the old régime?  What manner of crimes is growing
up in the land?)  And the question may be answered, too, by watching
whether the press and platform and pulpit stand as everlastingly and
relentlessly for sharp demarkation between right and wrong, for the
sharp demarkation between truth, plain truth, and intentional
mendacity, as under the régime of the old hard days.  When political
life grows corrupt, is it now cleansed, or condoned?  Let each Canadian
answer for himself.  If the altar fires of Canada's ideals again burn
low, again she will lag in the progress of the world's great builders.



NOTE.  In all names of persons, names have been spelled as signed by
the person; in names of places, as written in early state documents.
In all other cases the rulings of the Canadian Geographic Board have
been followed, with the exception of _Montagnais_, which is given
_Montaignais_, _Tadousac_ as _Tadoussac_, _Saut_ as _Sault_,
_Louisbourg_ as _Louisburg_, _Denys_ as _Denis_.

Abenaki Indians, 171, 192, 193

Abercrombie, 252, 256, 258, 259

Acadia, 40, 41, 61, 64, 65, 69, 70, 192, 196, 197, 204, 214, 216, 220,
231, 233, 235, 236, 241

Agona, 19

Alaska, 321, 324

Albanel, Father, 143, 144

Albany, 97, 153, 159, 160, 162

Alberta, 297, 436

Alexander, 208

Alexander, Sir William, 61

Algonquin Indians, 52, 103, 104, 105, 106, 108

Allen, Ethan, 298

Allumette Island, 51, 52

Alymer, 50

Amherst, 236

Amherst, Sir Jeffrey, 252, 253, 256, 261, 268, 274, 277

André, Mademoiselle, 122

Annapolis, 200, 201, 215, 231

Annapolis Basin, 35, 37, 44, 61, 65, 67, 69, 177

Anticosti Island, 12, 134, 177

Appleton, Colonel, 197

Argall, Samuel, 43, 44, 61

Arnold, Benedict, 300-309

Astor, John Jacob, 294, 330, 333

Astoria, 333, 379

Athabasca, 324, 327, 390, 391, 398, 399, 401, 402

Aubert, 7

Aubry, 34, 35, 36, 44, 236

Aulneau, 208, 209

Bad River, 329, 330

Balboa, 6

Barclay, Captain, 363, 364

Barré, Charlotte, 78

Basin of Mines, 195

Basques, 44, 45, 46, 58

Basset, 195

Bathurst, Lord, 411

Bay of Islands, 10

Bayly, Governor, 144, 187

Beaubassin, 195, 236

Beauharnois, Governor, 206

Beaujeu, 141

Beauport, 269, 275

Beaupré, 19

Beauséjour, 231, 236

Beaver Dams, 362

Bella Coola, 330

Belle Isle, 10, 19, 20

Belle Isle Straits, 10, 12

Bering, Vitus, 212

Berkeley, Admiral, 335, 336

Biard, Father, 41, 42, 44

Biencourt, 34, 40, 42, 61

Bigot, Intendant, 241-247, 274

Black Rock, 369

Blackwater River, 330

Blanc Sablon, 10, 11, 12

Bloody Brook, 202

Boerstler, Lieutenant, 360, 362

Bona Vista, 5, 8

Bonaventure, 195

Boscawen, 226, 234, 252, 256

Boston, 66, 194, 195, 203, 216

Boucher, 394

Bougainville, 243, 261, 270

Bouquet, 287, 288, 289, 290

Bourgeoys, Marguerite, 117

Bourlamaque, 243, 262

Braddock, General, 226-230

Bradstreet, General, 260, 287, 288

Brant, Joseph, 310, 315

Bras d'Or Lakes, 7

Brébeuf, Jean de, 71, 80, 82-90

Bridgar, 149

British Columbia, 323, 436

Brock, Isaac, 338-348, 363

Brockville, 349

Brown, George, 371, 434

Brulé, Etienne, 48, 50, 52-57, 83, 127

Buffalo, 369, 371

Buller, Charles, 432

Burlington Heights, 365, 372

Burton, Colonel, 272

Cabot, John, 3-7, 26, 61

Cabot, Sebastian, 5

Cadillac, La Motte, 119, 124, 163, 165, 205

Caldwell, General, 412

California, 319, 408

Cameron, Duncan, 389, 391

Campbell, Captain, 285

Cape Breton, 5, 6, 7, 38, 43, 61, 62, 65, 124, 204, 214, 215

Cape Cod, 30, 37

Cape Diamond, 13, 19, 45, 80

Cape Rouge, 19, 22

Cape Sable, 61, 65

Garden, Major, 299

Carillon, 50

Carleton, 62

Carleton, Sir Guy, 279, 280, 281, 298-312

Carterett, George, 114

Cartier, Jacques, 7-22, 33, 40, 45, 77, 79

Casson, Dollier de, 121, 126, 128, 130

Castle Island, 10

Catalina, 8

Chaleur, Bay of, 11, 188

Chambly, Fort, 125

Champlain, Lake, 47, 203, 237, 242, 298, 299, 378

Champlain, Madame, 57

Champlain, Samuel, 32, 33, 35, 37, 38, 39, 40, 44, 45, 46, 48-60, 77,
80, 82, 83, 115

Chandler, 356, 357, 359

Charity Island, 92

Charles II, 114, 115

Charlottetown, 314

Charlton Island, 156, 160, 161

Charnisay, Sieur d'Aulnay de, 65-69

Chasteaufort, Marc Antoine de, 115

Château Bay, 10

Chateauguay River, 368, 369

Chatham, 279

Chats Rapids, 51

Chaudière Falls, 50, 104

Chauncey, 349, 351-356, 366

Chenier, Dr., 429, 431

Chicago Portage, 133

Chignecto, 231

Chippewa, 371, 372, 373

Chippewyan, Fort, 325, 402

Chomedey, Paul de, 75

Christian Islands, 92, 99

Chrysler's Farm, 367

Church, Ben, 195

Churchill, Fort, 297, 318, 319

Clark, Lieutenant, 175

Clark, William, 310, 330

Clarke, John, 391, 398, 401, 402

Cobequid, 236

Cocking, Matthew, 297

Coffin, John, 306

Colborne, Sir John, 431

Columbia River, 321-323

Columbus, 3, 6

Contrecoeur, 230

Cook, James, 263, 319-321

Coppermine River, 296

Cornwallis, Edward, 221, 232

Cortereal, Caspar, 6

Courcelle, Governor, 125, 126

Craig, Governor, 336, 337

Cree Indians, 103, 110, 112, 208, 210, 386

Crèvecoeur, Fort, 138, 139

Cumberland, 236

Dablon, 132

D'Ailleboust, Louis, 78, 79, 115, 119, 120, 172

Dalzell, 285

Daniel, Father, 27, 84, 87

D'Anville, Duke, 220

D'Argenson, 110, 115

Dauversière, Jérôme le Royer de la, 74, 117

D'Avaugour, 111, 115

Davis, 30

Davost, Father, 84

Dearborn, General, 353, 356

Deerfield, 193, 195

De Mezy, 115

De Monts, Sieur, 33-37, 40, 44, 45, 48

Denis, 7

Denonville, Marquis de, 163, 164, 167, 168

De Salaberry, 368, 369

Detroit, 93, 205, 276, 286, 291, 310, 338, 339, 340, 363

De Troyes, Chevalier, 157, 158, 159, 160

Dieskau, Baron, 226, 237, 240

Digge's Island, 154

Dinwiddie, Governor, 224

Dobbs, Captain, 376

Dochet Island, 35

Dog Rib Indians, 326

Dollard, Adam, 107, 108, 109, 110

Don Quadra, 322

Donnacona, 13, 18, 19

Douglas, Fort, 386, 387, 390, 391, 393, 395-397

Douglas, Governor, 408

Drake, Sir Francis, 26, 27

Drew, 426

Drucourt, 253

Drummond, Sir Gordon, 369, 370, 372, 374, 376, 377, 378

Du Chêne, Lake, 50, 105

Duchambon, 219

Ducharme, 362

Duluth, 112, 146, 163, 165

Duluth, Daniel G., 118, 124, 205

Duncombe, Dr., 424, 425

Dupuis, Major, 98

Duquesne, Fort, 224, 226, 227, 228, 252, 260

Duquesne, Marquis, 224

Durell, 261

Durham, Lord, 431, 432

Duval, 46

Egg Islands, 203

Elizabeth, Queen, 26

Elliott, Lieutenant, 343, 344

Eric, Earl, 1

Erie, Fort, 344, 376, 377

Erie, Lake, 129, 130, 131, 137, 341, 349

Ermatinger, Judge, 424

Etherington, Major, 286

Evans, 344

Fidler, Peter, 389

Findley, 295

Fitzgibbons, 357, 359, 360, 362, 373, 421, 422

Fleury, 42, 43

Fontaine, Marguerite, 170

Fontaine, Sieur Pierre, 170

Forbes, John, 260

Forsyth, 353

Franklin, Benjamin, 309

Fraser, Simon, 330, 331, 332

Fraser River, 330, 331, 332

French Bay, 35

French River, 53, 54

Frenchman's Bay, 42

Freneuse, Madame, 195, 196, 202

Frobisher, Martin, 25, 30

Frontenac, Count, 132, 134, 135, 136, 140, 150, 167, 171, 176-188

Frontenac, Fort, 135, 136, 137, 141, 163, 178, 179, 180, 181, 183, 252,

Fundy, Bay of, 35, 42, 62, 63, 66

Funk Island, 9

Gâlet, 170

Galinée, 129, 130, 131

Garry, Nicholas, 406

Gaspé, 11, 12, 32, 124, 177, 256

Gatineau, 50, 104

George, Fort, 342, 344, 348, 355, 356, 360, 372

George, Lake, 240, 242

Georgian Bay, 54, 83, 84, 92

Gibraltar, Fort, 386, 387

Gilbert, Sir Humphrey, 25-29

Gilbert du Thet, 42, 43

Gillam, Ben, 148, 149, 150

Gillam, Captain, 144, 145, 149

Gillam, Zechariah, 113

Gillam's Island, 148

Girod, 428, 431

Gladwin, 284

Glen Rae, Dr., 407, 408

Glenn, 174

Goat Island, 44

Gore, Colonel, 429

Gorham, 248

Gourlay, Robert, 415, 416, 417

Grand Pré, 231, 236, 241

Grant, Cuthbert, 390, 391, 394

Gray, Robert, 321-323

Great Lakes, 53, 71

Green, Henry, 31

Green, Piper, 387

Green Bay, 93, 103, 105, 132

Greenland, 1, 2, 5

Griguet, 9

Grimmington, 154

Groseillers, Chouart, 150, 151, 152, 153, 156

Groseillers, Medard Chouart de, 85, 98-115, 118, 144-153

Gudrid, 1, 2, 3

Gulf of Mexico, 140, 141

Gulf Stream, 6

Gull Island, 9

Ha-Ha Bay, 9

Haldimand, General, 311, 312

Halifax, 231, 232, 233, 248, 317

Hamilton, 129

Hampton, General, 367, 368

Harrison, General, 363

Harvey, 357, 358

Haverhill, 198

Hayes River, 148, 385

Head, Sir Francis, 421

Hearne, Samuel, 296, 297, 318, 319

Hebert, Louis, 44, 57

Hebert, Madame, 79

Hendry, Anthony, 243, 295

Hennepin, Louis, 137, 138, 139

Henry, Alexander, 286, 287

Henry, John, 337

Henry VII, 3, 4

Hertel, François, 174, 175

Hill, Jack, 202, 203

Hochelaga, 12, 14, 15, 16, 18

Holmes, Admiral, 269

Horton, 236

Hudson, Henry, 30, 31, 32, 49

Hudson Bay, 30, 32, 103, 110, 113, 115, 134, 143, 144, 146, 148, 161,
162, 164, 191, 204, 318, 406

Hudson River, 30

Hudson Straits, 30

Hull, 338-340

Hume, 420

Hume, Captain, 154

Huron, Lake, 54

Huron Indians, 46, 48, 52-57, 82-93, 98, 108-110, 126

Iberville, 157-163, 165, 172, 174, 183, 184, 185, 186, 188

Iberville, Châteauguay, 183

Iceland, 3

Ihonateria, 84

Illinois Indians, 133, 138, 163, 189

Illinois River, 133, 139

Iroquois Indians, 46-48, 52-57, 78, 79, 86, 87-102, 103, 105, 106, 108,
110, 125, 128-130, 135, 162-171, 183, 204

Island of Orleans, 13

Isle of Demons, 10, 20, 21

Jacqueline, Frances Marie, 67

Jalobert, Captain, 12, 19

James Bay, 30, 31, 113, 144, 158

Jogues, Father, 85, 94, 97

Johnson, William, 237, 240

Jolliet, Louis, 118, 130, 132-134, 139, 146, 152, 177, 205

Jolliet, Madame, 183

Joseph, Louis, 243

Juett, 30

Jumonville, 225

Kaministiquia, 139, 143, 205, 207

Kidd, Captain, 150

King's Cove, 5

Kingston, 135, 260, 354, 370, 427

Kirke, David, 58, 60, 63

Kirke, Gervaise, 58, 63

Kirke, Louis, 58, 63

Kirke, Mary, 114, 115, 145

Kirke, Thomas, 58, 63

La Barre, 140, 150, 163, 168

La Bonté, 170

Labrador, 1, 6, 7, 10, 30, 46, 121, 143, 147

Lachine Rapids, 17

La Fléche, Father, 41

La Fôrest, 146

Lake of the Woods, 112

Lalemant, 88, 89, 90

La Martinière, 153

La Monnerie, Lieutenant de, 171

Lamont, 19

La Motte, Admiral, 226

La Naudière, M. de, 171

Langdale, 287

La Peltrie, Madame de, 72, 73, 74, 77, 78

La Pérouse, Admiral, 318, 319

La Place, 298

La Reine, Fort de, 211

La Roche, Marquis de, 23-25, 40

La Salle, Robert Cavalier de, 19, 118, 128-142, 146, 205

La Saussaye, 42

La Tour, Charles de, 61-69

La Tour, Claude de, 63, 64

La Tour, Madame Charles de, 67-69

Laurentian Hills, 50

Lauson, 75

Lauzon, Jean de, 98, 115

Lauzon-Charny, Charles de, 115

Laval, Bishop, 122

La Vérendrye, Jean, 207-209

La Vérendrye, Jemmeraie, 206-208

La Vérendrye, Pierre Gauthier, 206-212

Lawrence, Colonel, 231, 233, 234, 235, 253

Le Bers, 172

Le Breton, Captain, 12

Le Caron, Joseph, 52, 53

Le Chesnaye, 146, 150, 157

Leif, 1

Le Jeune, Pierre, 79, 80, 81, 82

Le Loutre, Louis Joseph, 213-216, 220, 231, 232, 241, 278

Le Moyne, Charles, 108, 118, 126, 146, 157

Le Moyne, Father, 98

Le Moyne, Maricourt, 157-161, 172, 173, 179, 182

Le Moyne, Ste. Helène, 157-159, 172, 173, 179, 182

Le Moyne, Sérigny, 183, 184, 187

Lery, Baron de, 7, 24

Lescarbot, Marc, 37-40, 63

Leslie, Captain, 286

Lévis, Chevalier de, 243, 245, 246, 249, 250, 267, 274

Lewis, 330

Lewiston, 342-348, 369

Long Sault Rapids, 108

Long Saut, 50

Lorette mission, 93

Loudon, Earl, 243, 248, 252

Louisburg, 215, 216, 218, 220, 234, 241, 248, 252

Louisiana, 140

Lount, 424, 427

Lundy's Lane, 373-375

Macdonald, John A., 427, 435

MacDonell, Miles, 381, 385, 388-390, 396, 397

McDonnell, 368, 369

M'Donnell, 350

Macdonnell, Major, 346, 348

Macdillivray, William, 380, 381

Mackay, Alexander, 327, 328

McKay, Tom, 407

MacKenzie, Alexander, 324-331, 380, 398

Mackenzie, Roderick, 325, 327

MacKenzie, William Lyon, 420-426

MacKenzie River, 327

Mackinac, Straits of, 105

McLean, Hector, 300, 387

McLoughlin, Dr. John, 407, 409

McNab, Allan, 422, 424-426

Magellan, 6

Maine, 42, 192, 204, 310

Maisonneuve, Sieur de, 75-79, 108, 118, 119, 120

Maitland, Sir Peregrine, 415, 417, 418

Mance, Jeanne, 76, 78, 117

Mandanes, 211

Manitoba, 436

Manitoulin Island, 84, 93

Maquinna, 322

March, Colonel, 196, 197

Marco Polo, 3

Marie of the Incarnation, 72-74

Marquette, Father, 118, 132, 133, 134, 205

Martin, Abraham, 44, 57

Mascarene, Paul, 201, 202, 215

Mascoutin Indians, 132, 138

Massacre Island, 209

Massé, Father, 42

Matonabbee, 296, 297, 319

Mattawa, 52

Matthews, 414, 415, 427

Meares, 321

Meigs, Fort, 363

Membertou, Henry, 38, 39, 41, 42

Meneval, 177

Mercer, Colonel, 247

Miami, Fort, 284

Michigan, 339

Michigan, Lake, 103, 133

Michilimackinac, 137, 276, 286, 310, 339, 379

Micmac Indians, 220

Midland, 54

Mingan, 12

Minnesota, 205, 208

Miquelon, 204, 277

Miramichi Indians, 10, 11, 256

Mississippi River, 106, 128, 133, 139, 141

Missouri River, 133, 139, 211

Mohawk River, 127

Monckton, 231, 234-235, 261, 265, 270

Monro, Lieutenant, 250

Montaignais Indians, 6, 10, 46, 81, 82

Montana, 212

Montcalm, Marquis de, 44, 243-250, 257, 265-269, 271, 273

Montgomery, Richard, 300-308

Montmagny, Charles de, 71, 72, 74, 76-78, 115

Montmorency, 13

Montreal, 16, 48-51, 72-78, 94, 107, 108, 117, 120, 165, 191, 267,
274-302, 340, 367, 400, 427, 428

Moon, Captain, 162

Moose Factory, 153, 157, 158

Moraviantown, 365, 366

Mount Desert, 42, 44

Mount Royal, 49, 78

Murray, Lord John, 234, 235, 258, 261, 270, 274, 277-280

Muskoka, 84

Nelson, Dr., 429, 430, 432

Nelson, Port, 152, 153, 183, 185, 384

Nelson River, 148, 385

Nepigon, 206

New Brunswick, 10, 62-65, 204, 220, 312, 313, 434

New Caledonia, 406, 407

New Hampshire, 172

New York, 97, 165, 221

Newfoundland, 5-7, 9, 10, 12, 19, 23, 30, 183, 184, 204

Niagara, 129, 267, 316, 340, 351, 369, 370, 379

Nicholson, Francis, 198-203

Nicolet, Jean, 71, 103, 127

Nipissing Indians, 51, 53

Nipissing Lake, 51, 53, 103

Noel, 19

Nootka, 320-322

Norsemen, 2

Nova Scotia, 1, 34, 35, 61, 220, 312, 317, 379, 434, 436

O'Callaghan, 429

Ochagach, Chief, 206

Ochiltree, Lord, 62

Ogden, 407

Ogdensburg, 350

Ohio River, 128, 130, 133, 224, 226, 241

Olier, Jean Jacques, 75, 76

Onondaga, Lake,98

Onondagas, 55, 98, 99, 100

Ontario, 84, 127, 312, 315, 316, 338, 349

Ontario, Lake, 54, 57, 127, 129, 134, 349

Oregon, 406, 407

Orleans Island, 13, 76

Oswego, 247, 250

Ottawa, 46

Ottawa Indians, 51

Ottawa River, 17, 49, 51, 52, 57, 86

Papineau, 427-429

Parliament Hill, 50, 104

Parry Sound, 54

Parsnip River, 328

Passamaquoddy, 195

Pays d'en Haut, 182

Peace River, 326, 327

Péan, Madame, 245

Peguis, Chief, 392, 393, 395

Penetang, 54, 83, 85

Pepperrell, William, 216, 219

Pepys, Samuel, 153

Peré, Jan, 130, 132, 152-159

Perrot, Nicholas, 132, 163

Perry, 349

Phips, Sir William, 176-178, 182

Pierre, 80, 81, 82

Pierre, Fort, 208

Pike, 353, 354

Pitt, Fort, 290

Pittsburg, 224, 228, 260

Place d'Armes, 79

Place Royale, 48

Placentia, 183

Plenderleath, Major, 358

Poncet, Père, 94, 97

Pontgravé, 32-38, 42, 45, 71

Pontiac, 276, 281, 286, 291, 292

Port Dover, 131

Port Royal, 35-44, 57, 61, 64-70, 114, 191, 194, 202

Port Royal Basin, 198

Port Stanley, 130

Portland, Me., 171, 175

Portneuf, 175

Poutrincourt, Baron de, 34-42

Powell, 416, 417

Presqu' Isle, 276, 284, 348, 363

Preston, Major, 300

Prevost, Sir George, 349, 370, 376, 378, 410, 411

Primeau, Louis, 297

Prince Edward Island, 214, 215, 232, 256, 312, 314

Procter, 363, 365, 366

Puget Sound, 322

Quebec, 13, 17, 44, 45, 52, 57, 59, 60, 63, 71-82, 94, 107, 117, 156,
168, 171, 178-188, 202, 232, 252, 260-275, 276-309, 316, 317, 412, 432,
434, 435

Queenston Heights, 342-347, 352, 360, 372

Quesnel, 331

Quinte, Bay of, 127

Quirpon, 9

Radisson, Pierre Esprit, 95, 96, 98-115, 118, 144-154, 205

Ragueneau, Father, 91-93, 99, 100

Raleigh, Sir Walter, 25, 26, 30

Ramezay, 271

Rasle, Père, 213

Rat, 164, 165

Razilli, Isaac, 65

Red River, 381, 388-392

Riall, 374

Richelieu, Cardinal, 57, 58, 65

Richelieu River, 46, 48, 125, 429

Richmond, Duke of, 417, 418, 419

Richmond Gulf, 30

Rideau River, 50, 104

Robertson, Colin, 380-383, 390, 391, 393, 396, 400-403

Roberval, Marguerite, 20, 21

Roberval, Sieur de, 18-23, 40

Rogers, Robert, 242, 276, 281, 285

Rolph, Dr., 421-425

Ross, 407

Rouville, Hertel de, 193, 194, 198

Rupert, 32, 153

Rupert River, 113, 115, 161

Rupert's Fort, 158, 161

Sable Island, 7, 23, 65, 114, 220

Sackett's Harbor, 370

Saguenay, 12, 22, 32, 73, 113

St. Anne de Beaupré, 120

St. Anthony, Falls of, 139

St. Charles, Fort, 208

St. Charles River, 13, 14, 15, 17, 429, 430

St. Denys, 65, 71

St. Eustache, 430

St. Francis, Lake, 129

St. Helen's Island, 49, 77

St. Ignace, 85, 88, 89, 91

St. Jean Ba'tiste, 85

St. John, Fort, 65, 67, 70

St. John River, 35, 62, 63, 64, 65, 67

St. John's, 19, 26, 28, 300

St. Joseph, 85, 87, 88, 284

St. Joseph Island, 92

St. Lawrence River, 12, 13, 15, 17, 19, 46, 71, 73, 126

St. Louis, 61, 85, 88, 89, 91, 292

St. Louis, Lake, 129

St. Lusson, 132

St. Malo, 43

St. Mary's Bay, 34, 36, 236

St. Peter, Lake, 15, 71

St. Pierre, 204, 224, 277, 279, 280, 281

St. Thomas Town, 413

St. Vallière, Bishop, 122

Ste. Anne's, 49

Ste. Croix River, 35, 37, 44, 310

Ste. Marie Mission, 85-92

Saint-Castin, Baron de, 175, 195, 197, 200, 201, 202

Salmon Falls, 174, 175

San Francisco, 407, 408

Sandusky, 276, 313

Sandwich Islands, 321

Sargeant, Governor, 155, 156, 159, 160

Saskatchewan, 212, 243, 297, 401, 403, 436

Sault Ste. Marie, 106, 132, 378

Saunders, 261, 269

Schenectady, 173, 174

Schuyler, Captain, 176

Scott, Hercules, 373, 374

Secord, James, 360

Secord, Laura, 360-362

Sedgwick, Major, 70

Selkirk, 385

Selkirk, Lord, 317, 380, 381, 384, 388, 390, 396, 397, 398, 400

Semple, Robert, 390, 392, 393, 394

Seven Oaks, 394, 399

Sheaffe, General, 346, 347, 354

Sherbrooke, Sir John, 412, 417

Simcoe, Lake, 54, 84, 85

Simcoe, Lieutenant Governor, 316, 412

Simpson, Sir George, 406

Sioux Indians, 103

Skraelings, 1

Smithsend, 154

Smyth, 348

Sorcerer Indians, 51

Sorel, Dame, 146

Sorel, Fort, 125

Stadacona, 13

Staring Hairs, 53

Stobo, Robert, 268

Stony Creek, 357, 358

Stopford, Major, 300

Stuart, 331

Subercase, 197-200

Superior, Lake, 85, 112

Susquehanna Indians, 54

Swanton, Vt., 429

Sylvie, 157

Tadoussac, 32, 34, 44, 58, 63, 73, 74, 94, 134, 177

Talbot, Tom, 413

Talon, Jean, 123-125, 128, 132, 136, 143

Tecumseh, 339, 363

Tessouat, Chief, 51

Texas, 141

Thomas, General, 309

Thompson, David, 332, 333

Thornstein, 1, 2

Thorwald, 1

Three Rivers, 71, 82, 83, 94, 95, 98, 107, 113, 124, 206, 277

Ticonderoga, Fort, 242, 249, 252, 256, 260, 298

Tobacco Indians, 85, 93

Tonty, Henry, 137-141

Toronto, 351, 353, 355, 415, 420, 422, 423, 432

Townshend, 261, 265, 270

Tracy, Marquis de, 125, 126

Trent River, 54

Trinity River, 141

Truro, 236

Twin Cities, 139

Twin Mountains Lake, 49

Ungava Bay, 30

Van Egmond, 421, 422, 424

Van Rensselaer, 342-348

Van Shoultz, 427

Vancouver, George, 319, 321-323

Vancouver Island, 320-322

Vaudreuil, Governor de, 193, 197, 243, 262, 274

Vaughan, 216

Verchéres, Jared of, 198

Verchères, M. de, 169

Verchères, Madame de, 169

Vergor, 231

Vermont, 429, 430

Verrazano, 7

Vetch, Colonel, 198, 201

Victoria, 409

Vignau, Nicholas, 49-51, 127

Vikings, 1

Ville Marie, 78

Vimont, Father, 73, 77, 78

Vincent, General, 355, 356, 358, 359

Vinland, 1, 2, 3

Walker, Sir Hovender, 202, 203

Warren, 219

Washington, George, 224, 229, 260, 310

Webb, General, 250

Weir, Lieutenant, 429

Wetherell, Colonel, 429

Wilkinson, 367, 368

William, Fort, 112, 397, 398, 399

William of Orange, 165, 166

Williams, William, 403

Winchester, General, 363

Winder, 356, 357, 358

Winnipeg, 210, 387, 394

Winnipeg Lake, 208

Winthrop, 176

Wisconsin, 106

Wisconsin River, 132

Wolfe, James, 44, 252-257

Wye River, 85, 88, 89, 92

Yeo, Sir James, 358, 366, 377

York Fort, 384, 385

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ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.