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Title: The Conquest of Canada (Vol. 1 of 2)
Author: Warburton, George, 1816-1857
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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VOL. 1.



England and France started in a fair race for the magnificent prize of
supremacy in America. The advantages and difficulties of each were much
alike, but the systems by which they improved those advantages and met
those difficulties were essentially different. New France was colonized
by a government, New England by a people. In Canada the men of
intellect, influence, and wealth were only the agents of the mother
country; they fulfilled, it is true, their colonial duties with zeal and
ability, but they ever looked to France for honor and approbation, and
longed for a return to her shores as their best reward. They were in the
colony, but not of it. They strove vigorously to repel invasion, to
improve agriculture, and to encourage commerce, for the sake of France,
but not for Canada.

The mass of the population of New France were descended from settlers
sent out within a short time after the first occupation of the country,
and who were not selected for any peculiar qualifications. They were not
led to emigrate from the spirit of adventure, disappointed ambition, or
political discontent; by far the larger proportion left their native
country under the pressure of extreme want or in blind obedience to the
will of their superiors. They were then established in points best
suited to the interests of France, not those best suited to their own.
The physical condition of the humbler emigrant, however, became better
than that of his countrymen in the Old World; the fertile soil repaid
his labor with competence; independence fostered self-reliance, and the
unchecked range of forest and prairie inspired him with thoughts of
freedom. But all these elevating tendencies were fatally counteracted by
the blighting influence of feudal organization. Restrictions,
humiliating as well as injurious, pressed upon the person and property
of the Canadian. Every avenue to wealth and influence was closed to him
and thrown open to the children of Old France. He saw whole tracts of
the magnificent country lavished upon the favorites and military
followers of the court, and, through corrupt or capricious influences,
the privilege of exclusive trade granted for the aggrandizement of
strangers at his expense.

France founded a state in Canada. She established a feudal and
ecclesiastical frame-work for the young nation, and into that
Procrustean bed the growth of population and the proportions of society
were forced. The state fixed governments at Montreal, Three Rivers, and
Quebec; there towns arose. She divided the rich banks of the St.
Lawrence and of the Richelieu into seigneuries; there population spread.
She placed posts on the lakes and rivers of the Far West; there the
fur-traders congregated. She divided the land into dioceses and
parishes, and appointed bishops and curates; a portion of all produce of
the soil was exacted for their support. She sent out the people at her
own cost, and acknowledged no shadow of popular rights. She organized
the inhabitants by an unsparing conscription, and placed over them
officers either from the Old Country or from the favored class of
seigneurs. She grasped a monopoly of every valuable production of the
country, and yet forced upon it her own manufactures to the exclusion of
all others. She squandered her resources and treasures on the colony,
but violated all principles of justice in a vain endeavor to make that
colony a source of wealth. She sent out the ablest and best of her
officers to govern on the falsest and worst of systems. Her energy
absorbed all individual energy; her perpetual and minute interference
aspired to shape and direct all will and motive of her subjects. The
state was every thing, the people nothing. Finally, when the power of
the state was broken by a foreign foe, there remained no power of the
people to supply its place. On the day that the French armies ceased to
resist, Canada was a peaceful province of British America.

A few years after the French crown had founded a state in Canada, a
handful of Puritan refugees founded a people in New England. They bore
with them from the mother country little beside a bitter hatred of the
existing government, and a stern resolve to perish or be free. One small
vessel--the Mayflower--held them, their wives, their children, and their
scanty stores. So ignorant were they of the country of their adoption,
that they sought its shores in the depth of winter, when nothing but a
snowy desert met their sight. Dire hardships assailed them; many
sickened and died, but those who lived still strove bravely. And bitter
was their trial; the scowling sky above their heads, the frozen earth
under their feet, and sorest of all, deep in their strong hearts the
unacknowledged love of that venerable land which they had abandoned

But brighter times soon came; the snowy desert changed into a fair scene
of life and vegetation. The woods rang with the cheerful sound of the
ax; the fields were tilled hopefully, the harvest gathered gratefully.
Other vessels arrived bearing more settlers, men, for the most part,
like those who had first landed. Their numbers swelled to hundreds,
thousands, tens of thousands. They formed themselves into a community;
they decreed laws, stern and quaint, but suited to their condition. They
had neither rich nor poor; they admitted of no superiority save in their
own gloomy estimate of merit; they persecuted all forms of faith
different from that which they themselves held, and yet they would have
died rather than suffer the religious interference of others. Far from
seeking or accepting aid from the government of England, they patiently
tolerated their nominal dependence only because they were virtually
independent. For protection against the savage; for relief in pestilence
or famine; for help to plenty and prosperity, they trusted alone to God
in heaven, and to their own right hand on earth.

Such, in the main, were the ancestors of the men of New England, and, in
spite of all subsequent admixture, such, in the main, were they
themselves. In the other British colonies also, hampered though they
were by charters, and proprietary rights, and alloyed by a Babel
congregation of French Huguenots, Dutch, Swedes, Quakers, Nobles,
Roundheads, Canadians, rogues, zealots, infidels, enthusiasts, and
felons, a general prosperity had created individual self-reliance, and
self-reliance had engendered the desire of self-government. Each colony
contained a separate vitality within itself. They commenced under a
variety of systems; more or less practicable, more or less liberal, and
more or less dependent on the parent state. But the spirit of
adventure, the disaffection, and the disappointed ambition which had so
rapidly recruited their population, gave a general bias to their
political feelings which no arbitrary authority could restrain, and no
institutions counteract. They were less intolerant and morose, but at
the same time, also, less industrious and moral than their Puritan
neighbors. Like them, however, they resented all interference from
England as far as they dared, and constantly strove for the acquisition
or retention of popular rights.

The British colonists, left at first, in a great measure, to themselves,
settled on the most fertile lands, built their towns upon the most
convenient harbors, directed their industry to the most profitable
commerce, raised the most valuable productions. The trading spirit of
the mother country became almost a passion when transferred to the New
World. Enterprise and industry were stimulated to incredible activity by
brilliant success and ample reward. As wealth and the means of
subsistence increased, so multiplied the population. Early marriages
were universal; a numerous family was the riches of the parent.
Thousands of immigrants, also, from year to year swelled the living
flood that poured over the wilderness. In a century and a half the
inhabitants of British America exceeded nearly twenty-fold the people of
New France. The relative superiority of the first over the last was even
greater in wealth and resources than in population. The merchant navy of
the English colonies was already larger than that of many European
nations, and known in almost every port in the world where men bought
and sold. New France had none.

The French colonies were founded and fostered by the state, with the
real object of extending the dominion, increasing the power, and
illustrating the glory of France. The ostensible object of settlement,
at least that holding the most prominent place in all Acts and Charters,
was to extend the true religion, and to minister to the glory of God.
From the earliest time the ecclesiastical establishments of Canada were
formed on a scale suited to these professed views. Not only was ample
provision made for the spiritual wants of the European population, but
the labors of many earnest and devoted men were directed to the
enlightenment of the heathen Indians. At first the Church and the civil
government leaned upon each other for mutual support and assistance, but
after a time, when neither of these powers found themselves troubled
with popular opposition, their union grew less intimate; their interests
differed, jealousies ensued, and finally they became antagonistic orders
in the community. The mass of the people, more devout than intelligent,
sympathized with the priesthood; this sympathy did not, however,
interfere with unqualified submission to the government.

The Canadians were trained to implicit obedience to their rulers,
spiritual and temporal: these rulers ventured not to imperil their
absolute authority by educating their vassals. It is true there were a
few seminaries and schools under the zealous administration of the
Jesuits; but even that instruction was unattainable by the general
population; those who walked in the moonlight which such reflected rays
afforded, were not likely to become troublesome as sectarians or
politicians. Much credit for sincerity can not be given to those who
professed to promote the education of the people, when no
printing-press was ever permitted in Canada during the government of

Canada, unprovoked by Dissent, was altogether free from the stain of
religious persecution: hopelessly fettered in the chains of metropolitan
power, she was also undisturbed by political agitation. But this calm
was more the stillness of stagnation than the tranquillity of content.
Without a press, without any semblance of popular representation, there
hardly remained other alternatives than tame submission or open mutiny.
By hereditary habit and superstition the Canadians were trained to the
first, and by weakness and want of energy they were incapacitated for
the last.

Although the original charter of New England asserted the king's
supremacy in matters of religion, a full understanding existed that on
this head ample latitude should be allowed; ample latitude was
accordingly taken. She set up a system of faith of her own, and enforced
conformity. But the same spirit that had excited the colonists to
dissent from the Church of England, and to sacrifice home and friends in
the cause, soon raised up among them a host of dissenters from their own
stern and peculiar creed. Their clergy had sacrificed much for
conscience' sake, and were generally "faithful, watchful, painful,
serving their flock daily with prayers and tears," some among them,
also, men of high European repute. They had often, however, the
mortification of seeing their congregations crowding to hear the ravings
of any knave or enthusiast who broached a new doctrine. Most of these
mischievous fanatics were given the advantage of that interest and
sympathy which a cruel and unnecessary persecution invariably excites.
All this time freedom of individual judgment was the watch-word of the
persecutors. There is no doubt that strong measures were necessary to
curb the furious and profane absurdities of many of the seceders, who
were the very outcasts of religion. On considering the criminal laws of
the time, it would also appear that not a few of the outcasts of
society, also, had found their way to New England. The code of
Massachusetts contained the description of the most extraordinary
collection of crimes that ever defaced a statute-book, and the various
punishments allotted to each.

In one grand point the pre-eminent merit of the Puritans must be
acknowledged: they strove earnestly and conscientiously for what they
held to be the truth. For this they endured with unshaken constancy, and
persecuted with unremitting zeal.

The suicidal policy of the Stuarts had, for a time, driven all the
upholders of civil liberty into the ranks of sectarianism. The advocates
of the extremes of religious and political opinion flocked to America,
the furthest point from kings and prelates that they could conveniently
reach. Ingrafted on the stubborn temper of the Englishman, and planted
in the genial soil of the West, the love of this civil and religious
liberty grew up with a vigor that time only served to strengthen; that
the might of armies vainly strove to overcome. Thus, ultimately, the
persecution under the Stuarts was the most powerful cause ever yet
employed toward the liberation of man in his path through earth to

For many years England generally refrained from interference with her
American colonies in matters of local government or in religion. They
taxed themselves, made their own laws, and enjoyed religious freedom in
their own way. In one state only, in Virginia, was the Church of England
established, and even there it was accorded very little help by the
temporal authority: in a short time it ceased to receive the support of
a majority of the settlers, and rapidly decayed. On one point, however,
the mother country claimed and exacted the obedience of the colonists to
the imperial law. In her commercial code she would not permit the
slightest relaxation in their favor, whatever the peculiar circumstances
of their condition might be. This short-sighted and unjust restriction
was borne, partly because it could not be resisted, and partly because
at that early time the practical evil was but lightly felt. Although the
principle of representation was seldom specified in the earlier
charters, the colonists in all cases assumed it as a matter of right:
they held that their privileges as Englishmen accompanied them wherever
they went, and this was generally admitted as a principle of colonial

In the seventeenth century England adopted the system of transportation
to the American colonies. The felons were, however, too limited in
numbers to make any serious inroad upon the morals or tranquillity of
the settlers. Many of the convicts were men sentenced for political
crimes, but free from any social taint; the laboring population,
therefore, did not regard them with contempt, nor shrink from their
society. It may be held, therefore, that this partial and peculiar
system of transportation introduced no distinct element into the
constitution of the American nation.

The British colonization in the New World differed essentially from any
before attempted by the nations of modern Europe, and has led to
results of immeasurable importance to mankind. Even the magnificent
empire of India sinks into insignificance, in its bearings upon the
general interests of the world, by comparison with the Anglo-Saxon
empire in America. The success of each, however, is unexampled in

In the great military and mercantile colony of the East an enormous
native population is ruled by a dominant race, whose number amounts to
less than a four-thousandth part of its own, but whose superiority in
war and civil government is at present so decided as to reduce any
efforts of opposition to the mere outbursts of hopeless petulance. In
that golden land, however, even the Anglo-Saxon race can not increase
and multiply; the children of English parents degenerate or perish under
its fatal sun. No permanent settlement or infusion of blood takes place.
Neither have we effected any serious change in the manners or customs of
the East Indians; on the other hand, we have rather assimilated ours to
theirs. We tolerate their various religions, and we learn their
language; but in neither faith nor speech have they approached one
tittle toward us. We have raised there no gigantic monument of power
either in pride or for utility; no temples, canals, or roads remain to
remind posterity of our conquest and dominion. Were the English rule
over India suddenly cast off, in a single generation the tradition of
our Eastern empire would appear a splendid but baseless dream, that of
our administration an allegory, of our victories a romance.

In the great social colonies of the West, the very essence of vitality
is their close resemblance to the parent state. Many of the coarser
inherited elements of strength have been increased. Industry and
adventure have been stimulated to an unexampled extent by the natural
advantages of the country, and free institutions have been developed
almost to license by general prosperity and the absence of external
danger. Their stability, in some one form or another, is undoubted: it
rests on the broadest possible basis--on the universal will of the
nation. Our vast empire in India rests only on the narrow basis of the
superiority of a handful of Englishmen: should any untoward fate shake
the Atlas strength that bears the burden, the superincumbent mass must
fall in ruins to the earth. With far better cause may England glory in
the land of her revolted children than in that of her patient slaves:
the prosperous cities and busy sea-ports of America are prouder
memorials of her race than the servile splendor of Calcutta or the
ruined ramparts of Seringapatam. In the earlier periods the British
colonies were only the reflection of Britain; in later days their light
has served to illumine the political darkness of the European Continent.
The attractive example of American democracy proved the most important
cause that has acted upon European society since the Reformation.

Toward the close of George II.'s reign England had reached the lowest
point of national degradation recorded in her history. The disasters of
her fleets and armies abroad were the natural fruits of almost universal
corruption at home. The admirals and generals, chosen by a German king
and a subservient ministry, proved worthy of the mode of their
selection. An obsequious Parliament served but to give the apparent
sanction of the people to the selfish and despotic measures of the
crown. Many of the best blood and of the highest chivalry of the land
still held loyal devotion to the exiled Stuarts, while the mass of the
nation, disgusted by the sordid and unpatriotic acts of the existing
dynasty, regarded it with sentiments of dislike but little removed from
positive hostility. A sullen discontent paralyzed the vigor of England,
obstructed her councils, and blunted her sword. In the cabinets of
Europe, among the colonists of America, and the millions of the East
alike, her once glorious name had sunk almost to a by-word of reproach.
But "the darkest hour is just before the dawn:" a new disaster, more
humiliating, and more inexcusable than any which had preceded, at length
goaded the passive indignation of the British people into irresistible
action. The spirit that animated the men who spoke at Runnymede, and
those who fought on Marston Moor, was not dead, but sleeping. The free
institutions which wisdom had devised, time hallowed, and blood sealed,
were evaded, but not overthrown. The nation arose as one man, and with a
peaceful but stern determination, demanded that these things should
cease. Then, for "the hour," the hand of the All Wise supplied "the
man." The light of Pitt's genius, the fire of his patriotism, like the
dawn of an unclouded morning, soon chased away the chilly night which
had so long darkened over the fortunes of his country.

But not even the genius of the great minister, aided as it was by the
awakened spirit of the British people, would have sufficed to rend
Canada from France without the concurrent action of many and various
causes: the principal of these was, doubtless, the extraordinary growth
of our American settlements. When the first French colonists founded
their military and ecclesiastical establishments at Quebec, upheld by
the favor and strengthened by the arms of the mother country, they
regarded with little uneasiness the unaided efforts of their English
rivals in the South. But these dangerous neighbors rose with wonderful
rapidity from few to many, from weak to powerful. The cloud, which had
appeared no greater than "a man's hand" on the political horizon, spread
rapidly wider and wider, above and below, till at length from out its
threatening gloom the storm burst forth which swept away the flag of

As a military event, the conquest of Canada was a matter of little or no
permanent importance: it can only rank as one among the numerous scenes
of blood that give an intense but morbid interest to our national
annals. The surrender of Niagara and Quebec were but the acknowledgment
or final symbol of the victory of English over French colonization. For
three years the admirable skill of Montcalm and the valor of his troops
deferred the inevitable catastrophe of the colony: then the destiny was
accomplished. France had for that time played out her part in the
history of the New World; during one hundred and fifty years her
threatening power had served to retain the English colonies in
interested loyalty to protecting England. Notwithstanding the immense
material superiority of the British Americans, the fleets and armies of
the mother country were indispensable to break the barrier raised up
against them by the union, skill, and courage of the French.

Montcalm's far-sighted wisdom suggested consolation even in his defeat
and death. In a remarkable and almost prophetic letter, which he
addressed to M. de Berryer during the siege of Quebec, he foretells
that the British power in America shall be broken by success, and that
when the dread of France ceases to exist, the colonists will no longer
submit to European control. One generation had not passed away when his
prediction was fully accomplished. England, by the conquest of Canada,
breathed the breath of life into the huge Frankenstein of the American

The rough schooling of French hostility was necessary for the
development of those qualities among the British colonists which enabled
them finally to break the bonds of pupilage and stand alone. Some degree
of united action had been effected among the several and
widely-different states; the local governments had learned how to raise
and support armies, and to consider military movements. On many
occasions the provincial militia had borne themselves with distinguished
bravery in the field; several of their officers had gained honorable
repute; already the name of WASHINGTON called a flush of pride upon each
American cheek. The stirring events of the contest with Canada had
brought men of ability and patriotism into the strong light of active
life, and the eyes of their countrymen sought their guidance in trusting
confidence. Through the instrumentality of such men as these the
American Revolution was shaped into the dignity of a national movement,
and preserved from the threatening evils of an insane democracy.

The consequences of the Canadian war furnished the cause of the quarrel
which led to the separation of the great colonies from the mother
country. England had incurred enormous debt in the contest; her people
groaned under taxation, and the wealthy Americans had contributed in
but a very small proportion to the cost of victories by which they were
the principal gainers. The British Parliament devised an unhappy
expedient to remedy this evil: it assumed the right of taxing the
unrepresented colonies, and taxed them accordingly. Vain was the
prophetic eloquence of Lord Chatham; vain were the just and earnest
remonstrances of the best and wisest among the colonists: the time was
come. Then followed years of stubborn and unyielding strife; the blood
of the same race gave sterner determination to the quarrel. The balance
of success hung equally. Once again France appeared upon the stage in
the Western world, and La Fayette revenged the fall of Montcalm.

However we may regret the cause and conduct of the Revolutionary war, we
can hardly regret its result. The catastrophe was inevitable: the folly
or wisdom of British statesmen could only have accelerated or deferred
it. The child had outlived the years of pupilage; the interests of the
old and the young required a separate household. But we must ever mourn
the mode of separation: a bitterness was left that three quarters of a
century has hardly yet removed; and a dark page remains in our annals,
that tells of a contest begun in injustice, conducted with mingled
weakness and severity, and ended in defeat. The cause of human freedom,
perhaps for ages, depended upon the issue of the quarrel. Even the
patriot minister merged the apparent interests of England in the
interests of mankind. By the light of Lord Chatham's wisdom we may read
the disastrous history of that fatal war, with a resigned and tempered
sorrow for the glorious inheritance rent away from us forever.

The reaction of the New World upon the Old may be distinctly traced
through the past and the present, but human wisdom may not estimate its
influence on the future. The lessons of freedom learned by the French
army while aiding the revolted colonies against England were not
forgotten. On their return to their native country, they spread abroad
tidings that the new people of America had gained a treasure richer a
thousand-fold than those which had gilded the triumphs of Cortes or
Pizarro--the inestimable prize of liberty. Then the down-trampled
millions of France arose, and with avaricious haste strove for a like
treasure. They won a specious imitation, so soiled and stained, however,
that many of the wisest among them could not at once detect its nature.
They played with the coarse bawble for a time, then lost it in a sea of

Doubtless the tempest that broke upon France had long been gathering.
The rays that emanated from such false suns as Voltaire and Rousseau had
already drawn up a moral miasma from the swamps of sensual ignorance:
under the shade of a worthless government these noxious mists collected
into the clouds from whence the desolating storm of the Revolution
burst. It was, however, the example of popular success in the New World,
and the republican training of a portion of the French army during the
American contest, that finally accelerated the course of events. A
generation before the "Declaration of Independence" the struggle between
the rival systems of Canada and New England had been watched by thinking
men in Europe with deep interest, and the importance to mankind of its
issue was fully felt. While France mourned the defeat of her armies and
the loss of her magnificent colony, the keen-sighted philosopher of
Ferney gave a banquet to celebrate the British triumph at Quebec, not as
the triumph of England over France, but as that of freedom over

The overthrow of French by British power in America was not the effect
of mere military superiority. The balance of general success and glory
in the field is no more than shared with the conquered people. The
morbid national vanity, which finds no delight but in the triumphs of
the sword, will shrink from the study of this checkered story. The
narrative of disastrous defeat and doubtful advantage must be endured
before we arrive at that of the brilliant victory which crowned our arms
with final success. We read with painful surprise of the rout and ruin
of regular British regiments by a crowd of Indian savages, and of the
bloody repulse of the most numerous army that had yet assembled round
our standards in America before a few weak French battalions and an
unfinished parapet.

For the first few years our prosecution of the Canadian war was marked
by a weakness little short of imbecility. The conduct of the troops was
indifferent, the tactics of the generals bad, and the schemes of the
minister worse. The coarse but powerful wit of Smollett and Fielding,
and the keen sarcasms of "Chrysal," convey to us no very exalted idea of
the composition of the British army in those days. The service had sunk
into contempt. The withering influence of a corrupt patronage had
demoralized the officers; successive defeats, incurred through the
inefficiency of courtly generals, had depressed the spirit of the
soldiery, and, were it not for the proof shown upon the bloody fields
of La Feldt and Fontenoy, we might almost suppose that English manhood
had become an empty name.

Many of the battalions shipped off to take part in the American contest
were hasty levies without organization or discipline: the colonel, a man
of influence, with or without other qualifications, as the case might
be; the officers, his neighbors and dependents. These armed mobs found
themselves suddenly landed in a country, the natural difficulty of which
would of itself have proved a formidable obstacle, even though
unenhanced by the presence of an active and vigilant enemy. At the same
time, there devolved upon them the duties and the responsibilities of
regular troops. A due consideration of these circumstances tends to
diminish the surprise which a comparison of their achievements with
those recorded in our later military annals might create.

Very different were the ranks of the American army from the magnificent
regiments whose banners now bear the crowded records of Peninsular and
Indian victory; who, within the recollection of living men, have stood
as conquerors upon every hostile land, yet never once permitted a
stranger to tread on England's sacred soil but as a prisoner, fugitive,
or friend. In Cairo and Copenhagen; in Lisbon, Madrid, and Paris; in the
ancient metropolis of China; in the capital of the young American
republic, the British flag has been hailed as the symbol of a triumphant
power or of a generous deliverance. Well may we cherish an honest pride
in the prowess and military virtue of our soldiers, loyal alike to the
crown and to the people; facing in battle, with unshaken courage, the
deadly shot and sweeping charge, and, with a still loftier valor,
enduring, in times of domestic troubles, the gibes and injuries of
their misguided countrymen.

In the stirring interest excited by the progress and rivalry of our
kindred races in America, the sad and solemn subject of the Indian
people is almost forgotten. The mysterious decree of Providence which
has swept them away may not be judged by human wisdom. Their existence
will soon be of the past. They have left no permanent impression on the
constitution of the great nation which now spreads over their country.
No trace of their blood, language, or manners may be found among their
haughty successors. As certainly as their magnificent forests fell
before the advancing tide of civilization, they fell also. Neither the
kindness nor the cruelty of the white man arrested or hastened their
inevitable fate. They withered alike under the Upas-shade of European
protection and before the deadly storm of European hostility. As the
snow in spring they melted away, stained, tainted, trampled down.

The closing scene of French dominion in Canada was marked by
circumstances of deep and peculiar interest. The pages of romance can
furnish no more striking episode than the battle of Quebec. The skill
and daring of the plan which brought on the combat, and the success and
fortune of its execution, are unparalleled. There a broad, open plain,
offering no advantages to either party, was the field of fight. The
contending armies were nearly equal in military strength, if not in
numbers. The chiefs of each were men already of honorable fame. France
trusted firmly in the wise and chivalrous Montcalm; England trusted
hopefully in the young and heroic Wolfe. The magnificent stronghold
which was staked upon the issue of the strife stood close at hand. For
miles and miles around, the prospect extended over as fair a land as
ever rejoiced the sight of man; mountain and valley, forest and waters,
city and solitude, grouped together in forms of almost ideal beauty.

The strife was brief, but deadly. The September sun rose upon two
gallant armies arrayed in unbroken pride, and noon of the same day saw
the ground where they had stood strewn with the dying and the dead.
Hundreds of the veterans of France had fallen in the ranks, from which
they disdained to fly; the scene of his ruin faded fast from Montcalm's
darkening sight, but the proud consciousness of having done his duty
deprived defeat and death of their severest sting. Not more than a
musket-shot away lay Wolfe; the heart that but an hour before had
throbbed with great and generous impulse, now still forever. On the face
of the dead there rested a triumphant smile, which the last agony had
not overcast; a light of unfailing hope, that the shadows of the grave
could not darken.

The portion of history here recorded is no fragment. Within a period
comparatively brief, we see the birth, the growth, and the catastrophe
of a nation. The flag of France is erected at Quebec by a handful of
hardy adventurers; a century and a half has passed, and that flag is
lowered to a foreign foe before the sorrowing eyes of a Canadian people.
This example is complete as that presented in the life of an individual:
we see the natural sequence of events; the education and the character,
the motive and the action, the error and the punishment. Through the
following records may be clearly traced combinations of causes, remote,
and even apparently opposed, uniting in one result, and also the
surprising fertility of one great cause in producing many different

Were we to read the records of history by the light of the understanding
instead of by the fire of the passions, the study could be productive
only of unmixed good; their examples and warnings would afford us
constant guidance in the paths of public and private virtue. The narrow
and unreasonable notion of exclusive national merit can not survive a
fair glance over the vast map of time and space which history lays
before us. We may not avert our eyes from those dark spots upon the
annals of our beloved land where acts of violence and injustice stand
recorded against her, nor may we suffer the blaze of military renown to
dazzle our judgment. Victory may bring glory to the arms, while it
brings shame to the councils of a people; for the triumphs of war are
those of the general and the soldier; increase of honor, wisdom, and
prosperity are the triumphs of the nation.

The citizens of Rome placed the images of their ancestors in the
vestibule, to recall the virtues of the dead, and to stimulate the
emulation of the living. We also should fix our thoughts upon the
examples which history presents, not in a vain spirit of selfish
nationality, but in earnest reverence for the great and good of all
countries, and a contempt for the false, and mean, and cruel even of our


[Footnote 1: See Appendix, No. I. (see Vol II)]



The philosophers of remote antiquity acquired the important knowledge of
the earth's spherical form; to their bold genius we are indebted for the
outline of the geographical system now universally adopted. With a
vigorous conception, but imperfect execution, they traced out the scheme
of denoting localities by longitude and latitude: according to their
teaching, the imaginary equatorial line, encompassing the earth, was
divided into hours and degrees.

Even at that distant period hardy adventurers had penetrated far away
into the land of the rising sun, and many a wondrous tale was told of
that mysterious empire, where one third of our fellow-men still stand
apart from the brotherhood of nations. Among the various and astounding
exaggerations induced by the vanity of the narrators, and the ignorance
of their audience, none was more ready than that of distance. The
journey, the labor of a life; each league of travel a new scene; the day
crowded with incident, the night a dream of terror or admiration. Then,
as the fickle will of the wanderer suggested, as the difficulties or
encouragement of nature, and the hostility or aid of man impelled, the
devious course bent to the north or south, was hastened, hindered, or

By such vague and shadowy measurement as the speculations of these
wanderers supplied, the sages of the past traced out the ideal limits of
the dry land which, at the word of God, appeared from out the gathering
together of the waters.[2]

The most eminent geographer before the time of Ptolemy places the
confines of Seres--the China of to-day--at nearly two thirds of the
distance round the world, from the first meridian.[3] Ptolemy reduces
the proportion to one half. Allowing for the supposed vast extent of
this unknown country to the eastward, it was evident that its remotest
shores approached our Western World. But, beyond the Pillars of
Hercules, the dark and stormy waters of the Atlantic[5] forbade
adventure. The giant minds of those days saw, even through the mists of
ignorance and error, that the readiest course to reach this distant land
must lie toward the setting sun, across the western ocean.[6] From over
this vast watery solitude no traveler had ever brought back the story of
his wanderings. The dim light of traditionary memory gave no guiding
ray, the faint voice of rumor breathed not its mysterious secrets. Then
poetic imagination filled the void; vast islands were conjured up out of
the deep, covered with unheard-of luxuriance of vegetation, rich in
mines of incalculable value, populous with a race of conquering
warriors. But this magnificent vision was only created to be destroyed;
a violent earthquake rent asunder in a day and a night the foundations
of Atlantis, and the waters of the Western Ocean swept over the ruins of
this once mighty empire.[7] In after ages we are told, that some
Phoenician vessels, impelled by a strong east wind, were driven for
thirty days across the Atlantic: there they found a part of the sea
where the surface was covered with rushes and sea-weed, somewhat
resembling a vast inundated meadow.[8] The voyagers ascribed these
strange appearances to some cause connected with the submerged Atlantis,
and even in later years they were held by many as confirmation of
Plato's marvelous story.[9]

In the Carthaginian annals is found the mention of a fertile and
beautiful island of the distant Atlantic. Many adventurous men of that
maritime people were attracted thither by the delightful climate and the
riches of the soil; it was deemed of such value and importance that they
proposed to transfer the seat of their republic to its shores in case of
any irreparable disaster at home. But at length the Senate, fearing the
evils of a divided state, denounced the distant colony, and decreed the
punishment of death to those who sought it for a home. If there be any
truth in this ancient tale, it is probable that one of the Canary
Islands was its subject.[10]

Although the New World in the West was unknown to the ancients, there is
no doubt that they entertained a suspicion of its existence;[11] the
romance of Plato--the prophecy of Seneca, were but the offsprings of
this vague idea. Many writers tell us it was conjectured that, by
sailing from the coast of Spain, the eastern shores of India might be
reached;[13] the length of the voyage, or the wonders that might lie in
its course, imagination alone could measure or describe. Whatever might
have been the suspicion or belief[14] of ancient time, we may feel
assured that none then ventured to seek these distant lands, nor have we
reason to suppose that any of the civilized European races gave
inhabitants to the New World before the close of the fifteenth century.

To the barbarous hordes of Northeastern Asia America must have long been
known as the land where many of their wanderers found a home. It is not
surprising that from them no information was obtained; but it is strange
that the bold and adventurous Northmen should have visited it nearly
five hundred years before the great Genoese, and have suffered their
wonderful discovery to remain hidden from the world, and to become
almost forgotten among themselves.[15]

In the year 1001 the Icelanders touched upon the American coast, and for
nearly two centuries subsequent visits were repeatedly made by them and
the Norwegians, for the purpose of commerce or for the gratification of
curiosity. Biorn Heriolson, an Icelander, was the first discoverer:
steering for Greenland, he was driven to the south by tempestuous and
unfavorable winds, and saw different parts of America, without, however,
touching at any of them. Attracted by the report of this voyage, Leif,
son of Eric, the discoverer of Greenland, fitted out a vessel to pursue
the same adventure. He passed the coast visited by Biorn, and steered
southwest till he reached a strait between a large island and the main
land. Finding the country fertile and pleasant, he passed the winter
near this place, and gave it the name of Vinland,[16] from the wild vine
which grew there in great abundance.[17] The winter days were longer in
this new country than in Greenland, and the weather was more temperate.

Leif returned to Greenland in the spring; his brother Thorvald succeeded
him, and remained two winters in Vinland exploring much of the coast and
country.[19] In the course of the third summer the natives, now called
Esquimaux, were first seen; on account of their diminutive stature the
adventurers gave them the name of _Skrælingar_.[20] These poor savages,
irritated by an act of barbarous cruelty, attacked the Northmen with
darts and arrows, and Thorvald fell a victim to their vengeance. A
wealthy Icelander, named Thorfinn, established a regular colony in
Vinland soon after this event; the settlers increased rapidly in
numbers, and traded with the natives for furs and skins to great
advantage. After three years the adventurers returned to Iceland
enriched by the expedition, and reported favorably upon the new country.
Little is known of this settlement after Thorfinn's departure till early
in the twelfth century, when a bishop of Greenland[21] went there to
promulgate the Christian faith among the colonists; beyond that time
scarcely a notice of its existence occurs, and the name and situation of
the ancient Vinland soon passed away from the knowledge of man. Whether
the adventurous colonists ever returned, or became blended with the
natives,[22] or perished by their hands, no record remains to tell.[23]

Discoveries such as these by the ancient Scandinavians--fruitless to the
world and almost buried in oblivion--can not dim the glory of that
transcendant genius to whom we owe the knowledge of a New World.

The claim of the Welsh to the first discovery of America seems to rest
upon no better original authority than that of Meridith-ap-Rees, a bard
who died in the year 1477. His verses only relate that Prince Madoc,
wearied with dissensions at home, searched the ocean for a new kingdom.
The tale of this adventurer's voyages and colonization was written one
hundred years subsequent to the early Spanish discoveries, and seems to
be merely a fanciful completion of his history: he probably perished in
the unknown seas. It is certain that neither the ancient principality
nor the world reaped any benefit from these alleged discoveries.[24]

In the middle of the thirteenth and the beginning of the fourteenth
centuries, the Venetian Marco Polo[25] and the Englishman Mandeville[26]
awakened the curiosity of Europe with respect to the remote parts of the
earth. Wise and discerning men selected the more valuable portions of
their observations; ideas were enlarged, and a desire for more perfect
information excited a thirst for discovery. While this spirit was
gaining strength in Europe, the wonderful powers of the magnet were
revealed to the Western World.[27] The invention of the mariner's
compass aided and extended navigation more than all the experience and
adventure of preceding ages: the light of the stars, the guidance of the
sea-coast, were no longer necessary; trusting to the mysterious powers
of his new friend, the sailor steered out fearlessly into the ocean,
through the bewildering mists or the darkness of night.

The Spaniards were the first to profit by the bolder spirit and improved
science of navigation. About the beginning of the fourteenth century,
they were led to the accidental discovery of the Canary Islands,[28] and
made repeated voyages thither, plundering the wretched inhabitants, and
carrying them off as slaves.[29] Pope Clement VI. conferred these
countries as a kingdom upon Louis de la Cerda, of the royal race of
Castile; he, however, was powerless to avail himself of the gift, and it
passed to the stronger hand of John de Bethancourt, a Norman baron.[30]
The countrymen of this bold adventurer explored the seas far to the
south of the Canary Islands, and acquired some knowledge of the coast of

The glory of leading the career of systematic exploration belongs to the
Portuguese:[31] their attempts were not only attended with considerable
success, but gave encouragement and energy to those efforts that were
crowned by the discovery of a world: among them the great Genoese was
trained, and their steps in advance matured the idea, and aided the
execution of his design. The nations of Europe had now begun to cast
aside the errors and prejudices of their ancestors. The works of the
ancient Greeks and Romans were eagerly searched for information, and
former discoveries brought to light.[32] The science of the Arabians was
introduced and cultivated by the Moors and Jews, and geometry,
astronomy, and geography were studied as essential to the art of

In the year 1412, the Portuguese doubled Cape Non, the limit of ancient
enterprise. For upward of seventy years afterward they pursued their
explorations, with more or less of vigor and success, along the African
coast, and among the adjacent islands. By intercourse with the people of
these countries they gradually acquired some knowledge of lands yet
unvisited. Experience proved that the torrid zone was not closed to the
enterprise of man.[33] They found that the form of the continent
contracted as it stretched southward, and that it tended toward the
east. Then they brought to mind the accounts of the ancient Phoenician
voyagers round Africa,[34] long deemed fabulous, and the hope arose that
they might pursue the same career, and win for themselves the
magnificent prize of Indian commerce. In the year 1486 the adventurous
Bartholomew Diaz[35] first reached the Cape of Good Hope; soon afterward
the information gained by Pedro de Covilham, in his overland journey,
confirmed the consequent sanguine expectations of success. The attention
of Europe was now fully aroused, and the progress of the Portuguese was
watched with admiration and suspense. But during this interval, while
all eyes were turned with anxious interest toward the East, a little
bark, leaky and tempest-tossed, sought shelter in the Tagus.[36] It had
come from the Far West--over that stormy sea where, from the creation
until then, had brooded an impenetrable mystery. It bore the richest
freight[37] that ever lay upon the bosom of the deep--the tidings of a
New World.[38]

It would be but tedious to repeat here all the well-known story of
Christopher Columbus;[39] his early dangers and adventures, his
numerous voyages, his industry, acquirements, and speculations, and how
at length the great idea arose in his mind, and matured itself into a
conviction; then how conviction led to action, checked and interrupted,
but not weakened, by the doubts of pedantic ignorance,[40] and the
treachery,[41] coolness, or contempt of courts. On Friday,[42] the 3d
of August, 1492, a squadron of three small, crazy ships, bearing ninety
men, sailed from the port of Palos, in Andalusia. Columbus, the
commander and pilot, was deeply impressed with sentiments of religion;
and, as the spread of Christianity was one great object of the
expedition, he and his followers before their departure had implored the
blessing of Heaven[43] upon the voyage, from which they might never

They steered at first for the Canaries, over a well-known course; but on
the 6th of September they sailed from Gomera, the most distant of those
islands, and, leaving the usual track of navigation, stretched westward
into the unknown sea. And still ever westward for six-and-thirty days
they bent their course through the dreary desert of waters; terrified by
the changeless wind that wafted them hour after hour further into the
awful solitude, and seemed to forbid the prospect of return; bewildered
by the altered hours of day and night, and more than all by the
mysterious variation of their only guide, for the magnetic needle no
longer pointed to the pole.[44] Then strange appearances in the sea
aroused new fears: vast quantities of weeds covered the surface,
retarding the motion of the vessels; the sailors imagined that they had
reached the utmost boundary of the navigable ocean, and that they were
rushing blindly into the rocks and quicksands of some submerged

The master mind turned all these strange novelties into omens of
success. The changeless wind was the favoring breath of the Omnipotent;
the day lengthened as they followed the sun's course; an ingenious
fiction explained the inconstancy of the needle; the vast fields of
sea-weed bespoke a neighboring shore; and the flight of unknown
birds[45] was hailed with happy promise. But as time passed on, and
brought no fulfillment of their hopes, the spirits of the timid began to
fail; the flattering appearances of land had repeatedly deceived them;
they were now very far beyond the limit of any former voyage. From the
timid and ignorant these doubts spread upward, and by degrees the
contagion extended from ship to ship: secret murmurs rose to
conspiracies, complaints, and mutiny. They affirmed that they had
already performed their duty in so long pursuing an unknown and hopeless
course, and that they would no more follow a desperate adventurer to
destruction. Some even proposed to cast their leader into the sea.

The menaces and persuasions that had so often enabled Columbus to
overcome the turbulence and fears of his followers now ceased to be of
any avail. He gave way to an irresistible necessity, and promised that
he would return to Spain, if unsuccessful in their search for three days
more. To this brief delay the mutineers consented. The signs of land now
brought almost certainty to the mind of the great leader. The
sounding-line brought up such soil as is only found near the shore:
birds were seen of a kind supposed never to venture on a long flight. A
piece of newly-cut cane floated past, and a branch of a tree bearing
fresh berries was taken up by the sailors. The clouds around the setting
sun wore a new aspect, and the breeze became warm and variable. On the
evening of the 11th of October every sail was furled, and strict watch
kept, lest the ships might drift ashore during the night.

On board the admiral's vessel all hands were invariably assembled for
the evening hymn; on this occasion a public prayer for success was
added, and with those holy sounds Columbus hailed the appearance of that
small, shifting light,[46] which crowned with certainty his
long-cherished hope,[47] turned his faith into realization,[48] and
stamped his name forever upon the memory of man.[49]

It was by accident only that England had been deprived of the glory of
these great discoveries. Columbus, when repulsed by the courts of
Portugal and Spain, sent his brother Bartholomew to London,[50] to lay
his projects before Henry VII., and seek assistance for their execution.
The king, although the most penurious of European princes, saw the vast
advantage of the offer, and at once invited the great Genoese to his
court. Bartholomew was, however, captured by pirates on his return
voyage, and detained till too late, for in the mean while Isabella of
Castile had adopted the project of Columbus, and supplied the means for
the expedition.

Henry VII. was not discouraged by this disappointment: two years after
the discoveries of Columbus became known in England, the king entered
into an arrangement with John Cabot, an adventurous Venetian merchant,
resident at Bristol, and, on the 5th of March, 1495, granted him letters
patent for conquest and discovery. Henry stipulated that one fifth of
the gains in this enterprise was to be retained for the crown, and that
the vessels engaged in it should return to the port of Bristol. On the
24th of June, 1497, Cabot discovered the coast of Labrador, and gave it
the name of _Primavista_. This was, without doubt, the first visit of
Europeans to the Continent of North America,[51] since the time of the
Scandinavian voyages. A large island lay opposite to this shore: from
the vast quantity of fish frequenting the neighboring waters, the
sailors called it _Bacallaos_.[53] Cabot gave this country the name of
St. John's, having landed there on St. John's day. Newfoundland has long
since superseded both appellations. John Cabot returned to England in
August of the same year, and was knighted and otherwise rewarded by the
king; he survived but a very short time in the enjoyment of his fame,
and his son Sebastian Cabot, although only twenty-three years of age,
succeeded him in the command of an expedition destined to seek a
northwest passage to the South Seas.

Sebastian Cabot sailed in the summer of 1498: he soon reached
Newfoundland, and thence proceeded north as far as the fifty-eighth
degree. Having failed in discovering the hoped-for passage, he returned
toward the south, examining the coast as far as the southern boundary of
Maryland, and perhaps Virginia. After a long interval, the enterprising
mariner again, in 1517, sailed for America, and entered the bay[54]
which, a century afterward, received the name of Hudson. If prior
discovery confer a right of possession, there is no doubt that the whole
eastern coast of the North American Continent may be justly claimed by
the English race.[55]

Gaspar Cortereal was the next voyager in the succession of discoverers:
he had been brought up in the household of the King of Portugal, but
nourished an ardent spirit of enterprise and thirst for glory, despite
the enervating influences of a court. He sailed early in the year 1500,
and pursued the track of John Cabot as far as the northern point of
Newfoundland; to him is due the discovery of the Gulf of St.
Lawrence,[56] and he also pushed on northward, by the coast of
Labrador,[57] almost to the entrance of Hudson's Bay. The adventurer
returned to Lisbon in October of the same year. This expedition was
undertaken more for mercantile advantage than for the advancement of
knowledge; timber and slaves seem to have been the objects; no less than
fifty-seven of the natives were brought back to Portugal, and doomed to
bondage. These unhappy savages proved so robust and useful, that great
benefits were anticipated from trading on their servitude;[58] the
dreary and distant land of their birth, covered with snow for half the
year, was despised by the Portuguese, whose thoughts and hopes were ever
turned to the fertile plains, the sunny skies, and the inexhaustible
treasures of the East.[59]

But disaster and destruction soon fell upon these bold and merciless
adventurers. In a second voyage, the ensuing year, Cortereal and all his
followers were lost at sea: when some time had elapsed without tidings
of their fate, his brother sailed to seek them; but he too, probably,
perished in the stormy waters of the North Atlantic, for none of them
were ever heard of more. The King of Portugal, feeling a deep interest
in these brothers, fitted out three armed vessels and sent them to the
northwest. Inquiries were made along the wild shores which Cortereal had
first explored, without trace or tidings being found of the bold
mariner, and the ocean was searched for many months, but the deep still
keeps it secret.

Florida was discovered in 1512 by Ponce de Leon, one of the most eminent
among the followers of Columbus. The Indians had told him wonderful
tales of a fountain called Bimini, in an island of these seas; the
fountain possessed the power, they said, of restoring instantly youth
and vigor to those who bathed in its waters. He sailed for months in
search of this miraculous spring, landing at every point, entering each
port, however shallow or dangerous, still ever hoping; but in the weak
and presumptuous effort to grasp at a new life, he wasted away his
strength and energy, and prematurely brought on those ills of age he had
vainly hoped to shun. Nevertheless, this wild adventure bore its
wholesome fruits, for Ponce de Leon then first brought to the notice of
Europe that beautiful land which, from its wonderful fertility and the
splendor of its flowers, obtained the name of Florida.[60]

The first attempt made by the French to share in the advantages of these
discoveries was in the year 1504. Some Basque and Breton fishermen at
that time began to ply their calling on the Great Bank of Newfoundland,
and along the adjacent shores. From them the Island of Cape Breton
received its name. In 1506, Jean Denys, a man of Harfleur, drew a map of
the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Two years afterward, a pilot of Dieppe, named
Thomas Aubert, excited great curiosity in France by bringing over some
of the savage natives from the New World: there is no record whence they
were taken, but it is supposed from Cape Breton. The reports borne back
to France by these hardy fishermen and adventurers were not such as to
raise sanguine hopes of riches from the bleak northern regions they had
visited: no teeming fertility or genial climate tempted the settler, no
mines of gold or silver excited the avarice of the soldier;[61] and for
many years the French altogether neglected to profit by their

In the mean time, Pope Alexander VI. issued a bull bestowing the whole
of the New World upon the kings of Spain and Portugal.[62] Neither
England nor France allowed the right of conferring this magnificent and
undefined gift; it did not throw the slightest obstacle in the path of
British enterprise and discovery, and the high-spirited Francis I. of
France refused to acknowledge the papal decree.[63]

In the year 1523, Francis I. fitted out a squadron of four ships to
pursue discovery[64] in the west; the command was intrusted to Giovanni
Verazzano, of Florence, a navigator of great skill and experience, then
residing in France: he was about thirty-eight years of age, nobly born,
and liberally educated; the causes that induced him to leave his own
country and take service in France are not known. It has often been
remarked as strange that three Italians should have directed the
discoveries of Spain, England, and France, and thus become the
instruments of dividing the dominions of the New World among alien
powers, while their own classic land reaped neither glory nor advantage
from the genius and courage of her sons. Of this first voyage the only
record remaining is a letter from Verazzano to Francis I., dated 8th of
July, 1524, merely stating that he had returned in safety to Dieppe.

At the beginning of the following year Verazzano fitted out and armed a
vessel called the Dauphine, manned with a crew of thirty hands, and
provisioned for eight months. He first directed his course to Madeira;
having reached that island in safety, he left it on the 17th of January
and steered for the west. After a narrow escape from the violence of a
tempest, and having proceeded for about nine hundred leagues, a long,
low line of coast rose to view, never before seen by ancient or modern
navigators. This country appeared thickly peopled by a vigorous race, of
tall stature and athletic form; fearing to risk a landing at first with
his weak force, the adventurer contented himself with admiring at a
distance the grandeur and beauty of the scenery, and enjoying the
delightful mildness of the climate. From this place he followed the
coast for about fifty leagues to the south, without discovering any
harbor or inlet where he might shelter his vessel; he then retraced his
course and steered to the north. After some time Verazzano ventured to
send a small boat on shore to examine the country more closely: numbers
of savages came to the water's edge to meet the strangers, and gazed on
them with mingled feelings of surprise, admiration, joy, and fear. He
again resumed his northward course, till, driven by want of water, he
armed the small boat and sent it once more toward the land to seek a
supply; the waves and surf, however, were so great that it could not
reach the shore. The natives assembled on the beach, by their signs and
gestures, eagerly invited the French to approach: one young sailor, a
bold swimmer, threw himself into the water, bearing some presents for
the savages, but his heart failed him on a nearer approach, and he
turned to regain the boat; his strength was exhausted, however, and a
heavy sea washed him, almost insensible, up upon the beach. The Indians
treated him with great kindness, and, when he had sufficiently
recovered, sent him back in safety to the ship.[65]

Verazzano pursued his examination of the coast with untiring zeal, narrowly
searching every inlet for a passage through to the westward, until he
reached the great island known to the Breton fishermen--Newfoundland. In
this important voyage he surveyed more than two thousand miles of coast,
nearly all that of the present United States, and a great portion of
British North America.

A short time after Verazzano's return to Europe, he fitted out another
expedition, with the sanction of Francis I., for the establishment of a
colony in the newly-discovered countries. Nothing certain is known of
the fate of this enterprise, but the bold navigator returned to France
no more; the dread inspired by his supposed fate[66] deterred the French
king and people from any further adventure across the Atlantic during
many succeeding years. In later times it has come to light that
Verazzano was alive thirteen years after this period:[67] those best
informed on the subject are of opinion that the enterprise fell to the
ground in consequence of Francis I. having been captured by the Emperor
Charles V., and that the adventurer withdrew himself from the service of
France, having lost his patron's support.

The year after the failure of Verazzano's last enterprise, 1525, Stefano
Gomez sailed from Spain for Cuba and Florida; thence he steered
northward in search of the long-hoped-for passage to India, till he
reached Cape Race, on the south-eastern extremity of Newfoundland. The
further details of his voyage remain unknown, but there is reason to
suppose that he entered the Gulf of St. Lawrence and traded upon its
shores. An ancient Castilian tradition existed that the Spaniards
visited these coasts before the French, and having perceived no
appearance of mines or riches, they exclaimed frequently, "Aca
nada;"[68] the natives caught up the sound, and when other Europeans
arrived, repeated it to them. The strangers concluded that these words
were a designation, and from that time this magnificent country bore the
name of CANADA.[70]


[Footnote 2: "La sphéricité de la terre étant reconnue, l'ètendue de la
terre habitée en longitude déterminé, en même temps la largeur de
l'Atlantique entre les côtes occidentales d'Europe et d'Afrique et les
côtes orientales d'Asie par différens degrés de latitude. Eratosthène
(Strabo, ii., p. 87, Cas.) évalue la circonférence de l'équateur à
252,000 stades, et la largeur de la _chlamyde_ du Cap Sacrè (Cap Saint
Vincent) à l'extrémité de la grande ceinture de Taurus, près de Thinæ à
70,000 stades. En prolongeant la distance vers le sud est jusque au cap
des Coliaques qui, d'après les idées de Strabon sur la configuration de
l'Asie, représente notre Cap Comorin, et avance plus à l'est que la côte
de Thinæ, la combinaison des données d'Eratosthène offre 74,600 et même
78,000 stades. Or, en réduisant, par la différence de latitude, le
périmètre equatorial au parallèle de Rhodes, des portes Caspiennes et de
Thinæ c'est à dire, au parallèle de 36° 0' et non de 36° 21', on trouve
203,872 stades, et pour largeur de la terre habitée, par le parallèle de
Rhodes, 67,500 stades. Strabon dit par conséquence avec justesse, dans
le fameux passage où il semble prédire l'existence du Nouveau Continent,
en parlant de deux terres habitées dans la même zone tempérée boréale
que les terres occupent plus du tiers de la circonférence du parallèle
qui passe par Thinæ. Par cette supposition la distance de l'Ibèrie aux
Indes est au delà de 236° à peu près 240°. Ou peut être surpris de voir
que le résultat le plus ancien est aussi le plus exact de tous ceux que
nous trouvons en descendant d'Eratosthène par Posidonius aux temps de
Marin de Tyr et de Ptolémée. La terre habitée offre effectivement,
d'après nos connaissances actuelles, entre les 36° et 37° 130 degrés
d'étendue en longitude; il y a par conséquent des côtes de la Chine au
Cap Sacré à travers l'océan de l'est à l'ouest 230 degrés. L'accord que
je nommerai accidentel de cette vraie distance et de l'évaluation
d'Eratosthène atteint done dix degrés en longitude. Posidonius
'soupçonne (c'est l'expression de Strabon, lib. ii., p. 102, Cas.), que
la longueur de la terre habitée laquelle est, selon lui, d'environ
70,000 stades, doit former la moitié du cercle entier sur lequel le
mesure se prend, et qu' ainsi à partir de l'extrémité occidentale de
cette même terre habitée, en naviguant avec un vent d'est continuel
l'espace de 70,000 autres stades, ou arriverait dans l'Inde."--Humboldt's
_Géographie du Nouveau Continent_.]

[Footnote 3: "La longueur de la terre habitée comprise entre les
méridiens des îles Fortunées et de Sera étoit, d'après Marin de Tyr
(Ptol., Geogr., lib. i., cap. 11) de 15 heures ou de 225°. C'étoit
avancer les côtes de la Chine jusqu'au méridien des îles Sandwich, et
réduire l'espace à parcourir des îles Canaries aux côtes orientales de
l'Asie à 135°, erreur de 86° en longitude. La grande extension de
23-1/2° que les anciens donnoient à la mer Caspienne, contribuoit
également beaucoup à augmenter la largeur de l'Asie. Ptolémée a laisse
intacte, dans l'évaluation de la terre habitée, selon Posidonius, la
distance des îles Fortunées au passage de l'Euphrate à Hiérapolis. Les
reductions de Ptolémée ne portent que sur les distances de l'Euphrate à
_la Tour de Pierre_ et de cette tour à la métropole des Seres. Les 225°
de Marin de Tyr deviennent, selon l'Almagest (lib. ii., p. 1) 180°,
selon la Géographie de Ptolémée (lib. i., p. 12) 177-1/4°. Les côtes des
Sinæ[4] reculent donc du méridien des îles Sandwich vers celui des
Carolines orientales, et l'espace à parcourir par mer en longitude
n'étoit plus de 135°, mais de 180° à 182-3/4°. Il étoit dans les
intérêts de Christophe Colomb de préférer de beaucoup les calculs de
Marin de Tyr à ceux de Ptolémée et a force de conjectures Colomb
parvient à restreindre l'espace de l'Océan qui lui restait à traverser
des îles du cap Vert au Cathay de l'Asie orientale à 128°" (_Vida del
Almirante_).--Humboldt's _Géographie du Nouveau Continent_, vol. ii., p.

[Footnote 4: In opposition to the opinion of Malte Brun and M. de
Josselin, Mr. Hugh Murray is considered to have satisfactorily proved
the correctness of Ptolemy's assertion that the Seres or Sinæ are
identical with the Chinese.--See _Trans. of the Royal Society of
Edinburgh_, vol. viii., p. 171.]

[Footnote 5: That the vast waters of the Atlantic were regarded with
"awe and wonder, seeming to bound the world as with a chaos," needs no
greater proof than the description given of it by Xerif al Edrizi, an
eminent Arabian writer, whose countrymen were the boldest navigators of
the Middle Ages, and possessed all that was then known of geography.
"The ocean," he observes, "encircles the ultimate bounds of the
inhabited earth, and all beyond it is unknown. No one has been able to
verify any thing concerning it, on account of its difficult and perilous
navigation, its great obscurity, its profound depth, and frequent
tempests; through fear of its mighty fishes and its haughty winds; yet
there are many islands in it, some peopled, others uninhabited. There is
no mariner who dares to enter into its deep waters; or if any have done
so, they have merely kept along its coasts, fearful of departing from
them. The waves of this ocean, though they roll as high as mountains,
yet maintain themselves without breaking; for if they broke it would be
impossible for ship to plow them."--_Description of Spain_, by Xerif al
Edrizi: Condé's Spanish translation. Madrid, 1799.--Quoted by Washington

[Footnote 6: Aristotle, Strabo, Pliny, and Seneca arrived at this
conclusion. The idea, however, of an intervening continent never appears
to have suggested itself.--Humboldt's _Cosmos_.]

[Footnote 7: In the Atlantic Ocean, over against the Pillars of
Hercules, lay an island larger than Asia and Africa taken together, and
in its vicinity were other islands. The ocean in which these islands
were situated was surrounded on every side by main-land; and the
Mediterranean, compared with it, resembled a mere harbor or narrow
entrance. Nine thousand years before the time of Plato this island of
Atlantis was both thickly settled and very powerful. Its sway extended
over Africa as far as Egypt, and over Europe as far as the Tyrrhenian
Sea. The further progress of its conquests, however, was checked by the
Athenians, who, partly with the other Greeks, partly by themselves,
succeeded in defeating these powerful invaders, the natives of Atlantis.
After this a violent earthquake, which lasted for the space of a day and
a night, and was accompanied with inundations of the sea, caused the
islands to sink; and for a long period subsequent to this, the sea in
that quarter was impassable by reason of the slime and shoals.--Plato,
_Tim._, 24-29, 296; _Crit._, 108-110, 39, 43. The learned Gessner is of
opinion that the Isle of Ceres, spoken of in a poem of very high
antiquity, attributed to Orpheus, was a fragment of Atlantis. Kircher,
in his "Mundus Subterraneus," and Beckman, in his "History of Islands,"
suppose the Atlantis to have been an island extending from the Canaries
to the Azores; that it was really ingulfed in one of the convulsions of
the globe, and that those small islands are mere fragments of it.
Gosselin, in his able research into the voyages of the ancients,
supposes the Atlantis of Plato to have been nothing more nor less than
one of the nearest of the Canaries, viz, Fortaventura or Lancerote.
Carli and many others find America in the Atlantis, and adduce many
plausible arguments in support of their assertion.--Carli, _Letters
Amer._; Fr. transl., ii., 180. M. Bailly, in his "Letters sur
l'Atlantide de Platon," maintains the existence of the Atlantides, and
their island Atlantis, by the authorities of Homer, Sanchoniathon, and
Diodorus Siculus, in addition to that of Plato. Manheim maintains very
strenuously that Plato's Atlantis is Sweden and Norway. M. Bailly, after
citing many ancient testimonies, which concur in placing this famous
isle in the north, quotes that of Plutarch, who confirms these
testimonies by a circumstantial description of the Isle of Ogygia, or
the Atlantis, which he represents as situated in the north of Europe.
The following is the theory of Buffon: after citing the passage relating
to the Atlantis, from Plato's "Timæus," he adds, "This ancient tradition
is not devoid of probability. The lands swallowed up by the waters were,
perhaps, those which united Ireland to the Azores, and the Azores to the
Continent of America; for in Ireland there are the same fossils, the
same shells, and the same sea bodies as appear in America, and some of
them are found in no other part of Europe."--Buffon's _Nat. Hist._, by
Smellie, vol. i., p. 507.]

[Footnote 8: The first authentic description of the Mar di Sargasso of
Aristotle is due to Columbus. It spreads out between the nineteenth and
thirty-fourth degrees of north latitude. Its chief axis lies about seven
degrees to the westward of the Island of Corvo. The smaller bank, on the
other hand, lies between the Bermudas and Bahamas. The winds and partial
currents in different years slightly affect the position and extent of
these Atlantic "sea-weed meadows." No other sea in either hemisphere
displays a similar extent of surface covered by plants collected in this
way. These meadows of the ocean present the wonderful spectacle of a
collection of plants covering a space nearly seven times as large as
France.--Humboldt's _Cosmos_.]

[Footnote 9: See Appendix, No. II. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 10: See Aristotle, _De Mirab. Auscult._, cap. lxxxiv., 84, p.
836, Bekk. This work, "A Collection of Wonderful Narratives," is
attributed to Aristotle; the real compiler is unknown. According to
Humboldt, it seems to have been written before the first Punic
war.--Diodorus of Sicily, vol. xix. Aristotle attributes the discovery
of the island to the Carthaginians; Diodorus to the Phoenicians. The
occurrence is said to have taken place in the earliest times of the
Tyrrhenian dominion of the sea, during the contest between the
Tyrrhenian Pelasgi and the Phoenicians. The Island of the Seven Cities
(see Appendix, No. II.) was identified with the island mentioned by
Aristotle as having been discovered by the Carthaginians, and was
inserted in the early maps under the name of Antilla. Paul Toscanelli,
the celebrated physician of Florence, thus writes to Columbus: "From the
Island of Antilia, which you call the Seven Cities, and of which you
have some knowledge," &c. In the Middle Ages conjectures were
religiously inscribed upon the maps, as is proved by Antilia, St.
Borondon (see Appendix), the Hand of Satan, Green Island, Maida Island,
and the exact form of vast southern regions. Humboldt refers the name of
Antilia so far back as the fourteenth century. The earliest date given
by Ferdinand Columbus is 1436. "Beyond the Azores, but at no great
distance toward the west, occurs the Ysola de Antilia, which we may
conclude, even allowing the date of the map to be genuine (in the
library of St. Mark, at Venice, date 1436), to be a mere gratuitous or
theoretic supposition, and to have received that strange name because
the obvious and natural idea of antipodes has been anathematized by
Catholic ignorance." He elsewhere says that "some Portuguese
cosmographers have inserted the island described by Aristotle in maps
under the name of Antilia."--_Hist. of the Discovery of America_, by Don
Ferdinand Columbus, in Ker, vol. iii., p. 3-29.

The origin of the name Antilla, or Antilia, is still a matter of
conjecture. Humboldt attributes to a "littérateur distingué" the
solution of the enigma, from a passage in Aristotle's "De Mundo," which
speaks of the probable existence of unknown lands opposite to the mass
of continents which we inhabit. These countries, be they small or great,
whose shores are opposed to ours, were marked out by the word
_porthornoi_, which in the Middle Ages was translated by _antinsulæ_.
Humboldt says that this translation is totally incorrect; however, the
idea of the "littérateur distingué" is evidently the same as Ferdinand
Columbus's. The following is the hypothesis favored by Humboldt:
"Peut-être même le nom d'Antilia qui paraît pour la première fois sur
une carte Vénitienne de 1436 n'est il qu'une forme Portuguaise donnée à
un nom géographique des Arabes. L'étymologie que hasarde M. Buace me
paraît très ingénieuse.... La syllabe initiale me paraît la corruption
de l'article Arabe. D'al Tinnin et d'Al tin on aura fait peu à peu
Antinna et Antilla, comme par un déplacement analogue de consonnes, les
Espagnols ont fait de crocodilo, corcodilo et cocodrilo. Le Dragon est
_al Tin_, et l'Antilia est peut-être, l'île des dragons
marins."--Humboldt's _Ex. Crit._, vol. ii., 211.

Oviedo applies the relation of Aristotle to the Hesperian Islands, and
asserts that they were the "India" discovered by Columbus. "Perchè egli
(Colombo) conobbe come era in effetto che queste terre che egli ben
ritrovava scritte, erano del tutto uscite dalla memoria degli uomin; e
io per me non dubito che si sapissero, e possedessero anticamente dalli
Rè de Spagna: e voglio qui dire quello che Aristotele in questo caso ne
scrisse, &c.... io tengo che queste Indie siano quelle autiche e famose
Isole Hesperide cosè dette da Hespero 12 Re di Spagna. Or come la Spagna
e l'Italia tolsero il nome da Hespero 12 Re di Spagna cosi anco da
questo istesso ex torsero queste isole Hesperidi, che noi diciamo, _onde
senza_ alcun dubbio si de tenere, che in quel tempe questo isole sotto
la signoria della Spagna stessero, e sotto un medesmo Re, che fu (come
Beroso dice) 1658 anni prima che il nostro Salvatore nascesse. E perchè
al presente siamo nel 1535 della salute nostra, ne segue che siano ora
tre milo e cento novantatre anni che la Spagna e'l suo Re Hespero
signoreggiavano queste Indie o Isole Hesperidi. E come cosa sua par che
abbia la divina giustizia voluto ritornargliele."--_Hist. Gen. dell'
Indie de Gonzalo Fernando d'Oviedo_, in Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 80.]

[Footnote 11: "It is very possible that in the same temperate zone, and
almost in the same latitude as Thinæ (or Athens?), where it crosses the
Atlantic Ocean, there are inhabited worlds, distinct from that in which
we dwell."[12]--Strabo, lib. i., p. 65, and lib. ii., p. 118. It is
surprising that this expression never attracted the attention of the
Spanish authors, who, in the beginning of the sixteenth century, were
searching every where in classical literature with the expectation of
finding some traces of acquaintance with the New World.]

[Footnote 12: "The idea of such a locality in a continuation of the long
axis of the Mediterranean was connected with a grand view of the earth
by Eratosthenes (generally and extensively known among the ancients),
according to which the entire ancient continent, in its widest expanse
from west to east, in the parallel of about thirty-six degrees, presents
an almost unbroken line of elevation."--Humboldt's _Cosmos_.]

[Footnote 13: "D'Anville a dit avec esprit que la plus grande des
erreurs dans la géographie de Ptolémée a conduit les hommes à la plus
grande découverte de terres nouvelles c'est, à dire la supposition que
l'Asie s'étendait vers l'est, au delà du 180 degré de longitude."

Both Strabo and Aristotle speak of "the same sea bathing opposite
shores," Strabo, lib. i., p. 103; lib. ii., p. 162. Aristotle, _De
Cælo_, lib. ii., cap. 14, p. 297. The possibility of navigating from the
extremity of Europe to the eastern shores of Asia is clearly asserted by
the Stagirite, and in the two celebrated passages of Strabo. Aristotle
does not suppose the distance to be very great, and draws an ingenious
argument in favor of his supposition from the geography of animals.
Strabo sees no obstacle to passing from Iberia to India, except the
immense extent of the Atlantic Ocean. It is to be remembered that
Strabo, as well as Eratosthenes, extend the appellation of Atlantic Sea
to every part of the ocean.--Humboldt's _Géog. du Nouveau Continent_.]

[Footnote 14: See Appendix, No. III. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 15: "Au milieu de tant de discussions acerbes qu'une curieuse
malignité et le goût d'une fausse érudition classique firent naître sur
le mérite de Christophe Colomb, parmi ses contemporains, personne n'a
pensé aux navigations des Normands comme précurseurs des Génois. Cette
idée ne se presenta que soixante quatre ans après la mort du grand
homme. On savait par ces propres récits 'qu'il étoit allé à Thulé' mais
alors ce voyage vers le nord ne fit naître aucun soupçon sur la
priorité, de la découverte.... Le mérite d'avoir reconnu la première
découverte de l'Amérique septentrionale par les Normands appartient
indubitablement au géographe Ortelius, qui annonça cette opinion des
l'année 1570. 'Christophe Colomb, dit Ortelius, a seulement mis le
Nouveau Monde en rapport durable de commerce et d'utilité avec l'Europe'
(_Theatr. Orbis Terr._, on p. 5, 6). Ce jugement est beaucoup trop
séverè."--Humboldt's _Géog. du Nouveau Continent_.]

[Footnote 16: "Biorn first saw land in the Island of Nantucket, one
degree south of Boston, then in New Scotland, and lastly in
Newfoundland."--Carl Christian Rafn, _Antiquitates Americanæ_, 1845, p.
4, 421; Humboldt's _Cosmos_.

"The country called 'the good Vinland' (Vinland it goda) by Leif,
included the shore between Boston and New York, and therefore parts of
the present states of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut,
between the parallels of latitude of Civita, Vecchia and Terracina,
where, however, the average temperature of the year is between 46° and
52° (Fahr.). This was the chief settlement of the Normans. Their active
and enterprising spirit is proved by the circumstance that, after they
had settled in the south as far as 41° 30' north latitude, they erected
three pillars to mark out the boundaries near the eastern coast of
Baffin's Bay, in the latitude of 72° 55', upon one of the Women Islands
northwest of the present most northern Danish colony of Upernavik. The
Runic inscription upon the stone, discovered in the autumn of 1824,
contains, according to Rask and Finn Magnusen, the date of the year
1135. From this eastern coast of Baffin's Bay, the colonists visited,
with great regularity, on account of the fishery, Lancaster Sound and a
part of Barrow's Straits, and this occurred more than six centuries
before the bold undertakings of Parry and Ross. The locality of the
fishery is very accurately described; and Greenland priests, from the
diocese of Gardar, conducted the first voyage of discovery in 1266.
These northwestern summer stations were called the Kroksjardar, heathen
countries. Mention was early made of the Siberian wood, which was then
collected, as well as of the numerous whales, seals, walrus, and polar
bears."--Rafn, _Antiq. Amer._, p. 20, 274, 415-418, quoted by Humboldt.]

[Footnote 17: One of the objections brought forward by Robertson against
the Norman discovery of America is, that the wild vine has never since
been found so far north as Labrador; but modern travelers have
ascertained that a species of wild vine grows even as far north as the
shores of Hudson's Bay.[18] Since Robertson's time, however, the
locality of the first Norman settlement has been moved further south,
and into latitudes where the best species of wild vines are abundant.]

[Footnote 18: Sir A. Mackenzie's Travels in Iceland, 1812. Preliminary
Dissertation by Dr Holland, p. 46.]

[Footnote 19: Rafn, _Antiq. Amer._]

[Footnote 20: The Esquimaux were at that time spread much further south
than they are at present.--Humboldt's _Cosmos_, vol. ii., p. 268.]

[Footnote 21: Eric Upsi, a native of Iceland, and the first Greenland
bishop, undertook to go to Vinland as a Christian missionary in 1121.]

[Footnote 22: "The learned Grotius founds an argument for the
colonization of America by the Norwegians on the similarity between the
names of Norway and La Norimbègue, a district bordering on New
England."--Grotius, _De Origine Gentium Americanarum_, in quarto, 1642.
See, also, the Controversy between Grotius and Jean de Laët.]

[Footnote 23: Accurate information respecting the former intercourse of
the Northmen with the Continent of America reaches only as far as the
middle of the fourteenth century. In the year 1349 a ship was sent from
Greenland to Markland (New Scotland) to collect timber and other
necessaries. Upon their return from Markland, the ship was overtaken by
storms, and compelled to land at Straumfjord, in the west of Iceland.
This is the last account of the "Norman America," preserved for us in
the ancient Scandinavian writings. The settlements upon the west coast
of Greenland, which were in a very flourishing condition until the
middle of the fourteenth century, gradually declined, from the fatal
influence of monopoly of trade, by the invasion of the Esquimaux, by the
black death which depopulated the north from the year 1347 to 1351, and
also by the arrival of a hostile fleet, from what country is not known.

By means of the critical and most praiseworthy efforts of Christian
Rafn, and the Royal Society for Northern Antiquities in Copenhagen, the
traditions and ancient accounts of the voyage of the Normans to
Helluland (Newfoundland), to Markland (the mouth of the River St.
Lawrence at Nova Scotia), and at Winland (Massachusetts), have been
separately printed and satisfactorily commented upon. The length of the
voyage, the direction in which they sailed, the time of the rising and
setting of the sun, are accurately laid down. The principal sources of
information are the historical narrations of Erik the Red, Thorfinn
Karlsefne, and Snorre Thorbrandson, probably written in Greenland
itself, as early as the twelfth century, partly by descendants of the
settlers born in Winland.--Rafn, _Antiq. Amer._, p. 7, 14, 16. The care
with which the tables of their pedigrees was kept was so great, that the
table of the family of Thorfinn Karlsefne, whose son, Snorre
Thorbrandson, was born in America, was kept from the year 1007 to 1811.

The name of the colonized countries is found in the ancient national
songs of the natives of the Färöe Islands.--Humboldt's _Cosmos_, vol.
ii., p. 268-452.]

[Footnote 24: See Appendix, No. IV. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 25: See Appendix, No. V. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 26: See Appendix, No. VI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 27: See Appendix, No. VII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 28: The numerous data which have come down to us from
antiquity, and an acute examination of the local relations, especially
the great vicinity of the settlements upon the African coast, which
incontestably existed, lead me to believe that Phoenicians,
Carthaginians, Greeks, and Romans, and probably even the Etruscans, were
acquainted with the group of the Canary Islands.--Humboldt's _Cosmos_,
vol. ii., p. 414.

"Porro occidentalis navigatio, quantum etiam famâ assequi Plinius
potuit, tantum ad Fortunatas Insulas cursum protendit, earumque
præcipuam à multitudine canum Canariam vocatam refert."--Acosta, _De
Natura Novi Orbis_, lib. i., cap. ii.

Respecting the probability of the Semitic origin of the name of the
Canary Islands, Pliny, in his Latinizing etymological notions,
considered them to be _Dog Islands_! (Vide Credner's Biblical
Representation of Paradise, in Illgen's Journal for Historical Theology,
1836, vol. vi., p. 166-186.)--Humboldt's _Cosmos_, vol. ii., p. 414.

The most fundamental, and, in a literary point of view, the most complete
account of the Canary Islands, that was written in ancient times, down to
the Middle Ages, was collected in a work of Joachim José da Costa de
Macedo, with the title "Memoria cem que se pretende provar que os Arabes
não connecerão as Canarias autes dos Portuguesques, 1844." (See, also,
Viera y Clavigo, _Notic. de la Hist. de Canaria_.)--Humboldt's _Cosmos_.]

[Footnote 29: See Appendix, No. VIII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 30: "Jean de Bethancourt knew that before the expedition of
Alvaro Beccara, that is to say, before the end of the fourteenth
century, Norman adventurers had penetrated as far as Sierra Leone (lat.
8° 30'), and he sought to follow their traces. Before the Portuguese,
however, no European nation appears to have crossed the

"Les Normands et les Arabes sont les seules nations qui, jusqu'au
commencement du douzième siècle, aient partagé la gloire des grandes
expéditions maritimes, le goût des aventures étranges, la passion du
pillage et des conquêtes éphémères. Les Normands ont occupé
successivement l'Islande et la Neustrie, ravagé les sanctuaires de
l'Italie, ravagé la Pouille sur les Grecs, inscrit leurs caractères
runiques jusque sur les flancs d'un des lions que Morosini enleva au
Pirée d'Athènes pour en orner l'arsenal de Venise."--Humboldt's _Géog.
du Nouveau Continent_, vol. ii., p. 86.]

[Footnote 31: "No nation," says Southey, "has ever accomplished such
great things in proportion to its means as the Portuguese." Its early
maritime history does, indeed, present a striking picture of enterprise
and restless energy, but the annals of Europe afford no similar instance
of rapid degeneracy. There was an age when less than forty thousand
armed Portuguese kept the whole coasts of the ocean in awe, from Morocco
to China; when one hundred and fifty sovereign princes paid tribute to
the treasury of Lisbon. But in all their enterprises they aimed at
conquest, and not at colonization. The government at home exercised
little control over the arms of its piratical mariners; the mother
country derived no benefit from their achievements. To the age of
conquest succeeded one of effeminacy and corruption.--Merivale's
_Lectures on Colonization_, vol. i., p. 44.]

[Footnote 32: See Appendix, No. IX. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 33: The zones were imaginary bands or circles in the heavens,
producing an effect of climate on corresponding belts on the globe of
the earth. The frigid zones, between the polar circles and the poles,
were considered uninhabitable and unnavigable, on account of the extreme
cold. The torrid zone, lying beneath the track of the sun, or rather the
central part of it, immediately about the equator, was considered
uninhabitable, unproductive, and impassable, on account of the excessive
heat. The temperate zones, lying between the torrid and the frigid
zones, were supposed to be the only parts of the globe suited to the
purposes of life. Parmenides, according to Strabo, was the inventor of
this theory of the five zones. Aristotle supported the same doctrine. He
believed that there was habitable earth in the southern hemisphere, but
that it was forever divided from the part of the world already known by
the impassable zone of scorching heat at the equator. (Aristot., Met.,
ii., cap. v.) Pliny supported the opinion of Aristotle concerning the
burning zones. (Pliny, lib. i., cap. lxvi.) Strabo (lib. ii.), in
mentioning this theory, gives it likewise his support; and others of the
ancient philosophers, as well as the poets, might be cited, to show the
general prevalence of the belief.--Cicero, _Somnium Scipionis_, cap.
vi.; Geminus, cap. xiii., p. 31; ap. Petavii Opus de Doctr. Tempor. in
quo Uranologium sive Systemata var. Auctorum. Amst., 1705, vol. iii.]

[Footnote 34: See Appendix, No. X. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 35: Barros, Dec. I., lib. iii., cap. iv., p. 190, says
distinctly, "Bartholomeu Diaz, e os de sua compantica per causa dos
perigos, e tormentas, que em o dobrar delle passáram che puyeram nome
Tormentoso." The merit of the first circumnavigation, therefore, does
not belong to Vasco de Gama, as is generally supposed. Diaz was at the
Cape in May, 1487, and, therefore, almost at the same time that Pedro de
Covilham and Alonzo de Payva of Barcelona commenced their expedition. As
early as December, 1487, Diaz himself brought to Portugal the account of
his important discovery. The mission of Pedro Covilham and Alonzo de
Payva, in 1487, was set on foot by King John II., in order to search for
"the African priest Johannes." Believing the accounts which he had
obtained from Indian and Arabian pilots in Calicut, Goa, Aden, as well
as in Sofala, on the eastern coast of Africa, Covilham informed King
John II., by means of two Jews from Cairo, that if the Portuguese were
to continue their voyages of discovery upon the western coast in a
southerly direction, they would come to the end of Africa, whence a
voyage to the _Island of the Moon_, to Zanzibar, and the gold country of
Sofala, would be very easy. Accounts of the Indian and Arabian trading
stations upon the east coast of Africa, and of the form of the southern
extremity of the Continent, may have extended to Venice, through Egypt,
Abyssinia, and Arabia. The triangular form of Africa was actually
delineated upon the map of Sanuto, made in 1306, and discovered in the
"Portulano della Mediceo-Laurenziana," by Count Baldelli in 1351, and
also in the chart of the world by Fra Mauro.--Humboldt's _Cosmos_, vol.
ii., p. 290, 461.]

[Footnote 36: Faria y Sousa complains that "the admiral entered Lisbon
with a vain-glorious exultation, in order to make Portugal feel, by
displaying the tokens of his discovery, how much she had erred in not
acceding to his propositions."--_Europa Portuguesa_, t. ii., p. 402,

Ruy de Pina asserts that King John was much importuned to kill Columbus
on the spot, since, with his death, the prosecution of the undertaking,
as far as the sovereigns of Castile were concerned, would cease, from
want of a suitable person to take charge of it; but the king had too
much magnanimity to adopt the iniquitous measure proposed.--Vasconcellos,
_Vida del Rie Don Juan II._, lib. vi,; Garcia de Resende, _Vide da Dom
Joam II._; Las Casas, _Hist. Ind._, lib. i., cap. lxxiv.; MS. quoted
by Prescott.]

[Footnote 37: See Appendix, No. XI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 38: "A Castilla y a Leon Nuevo Mumto dió Colon," was the
inscription on the costly monument that was raised over the remains of
Columbus in the Carthusian Monastery of La Cuevas at Seville. "The like
of which," says his son Ferdinand, with as much truth as simplicity,
"was never recorded of any man in ancient or modern times."--_Hist. del
Almirante_, cap. cviii.

His ashes were finally removed to Cuba, where they now repose in the
Cathedral church of its capital.--Navarrete, _Coleccion de Viages_, tom.

"E dandogli il titol di Don volsero che egli aggiungesse presso all'armè
di casa sua quattro altre, cioè quelle del Regno de Castiglio di Leon, e
il Mar Oceano con tutte l'isole e quattro anchore per dimostrare
l'ufficio d'Almirante, con un motto d'intorno che dicea, 'Per Castiglia
e per Leon, Nuovo Mundo trovo Colon.'"--Ramusio, _Discorio_, tom. iii.

The heir of Columbus was always to bear the arms of the admiral, to seal
with them, and in his signature never to use any other title than simply
"the Admiral."]

[Footnote 39: See Appendix, No. XII. (see Vol II)--In the Middle Ages
the prevalent opinion was that the sea covered but one seventh of the
surface of the globe; an opinion which Cardinal d'Ailly (Imago Mundi,
cap. viii.) founded on the apocryphal fourth book of Ezra. Columbus, who
always derived much of his cosmological knowledge from the cardinal's
work, was much interested in upholding this idea of the smallness of the
sea, to which the misunderstood expression of "the ocean-stream"
contributed not a little. He was also accustomed to cite Aristotle, and
Seneca, and St. Augustine, in confirmation of this opinion.--Humboldt's
_Examen Critique de l'Hist. de la Géographie_, tom. i., p. 186.]

[Footnote 40: See, especially, the details of the conference held at
Salamanca (the great seat of learning in Spain), given in the fourth
chapter of Washington Irving's "Columbus." One of the objections
advanced was, that, admitting the earth to be spherical, and should a
ship succeed in reaching in this way the extremity of India, she could
never get back again; for the rotundity of the globe would present a
kind of mountain, up which it would be impossible for her to sail with
the most favorable wind.--_Hist. del Almirante_, cap. ii.; _Hist. de
Chiapa por Remesel_, lib. ii., cap. 27.]

[Footnote 41: Columbus was required by King John II., of Portugal, to
furnish a detailed plan of his proposed voyages, with the charts and
other documents according to which he proposed to shape his course, for
the alleged purpose of having them examined by the royal counselors. He
readily complied; but while he remained in anxious suspense as to the
decision of the council, a caravel was secretly dispatched with
instructions to pursue the route designated in the papers of Columbus.
This voyage had the ostensible pretext of carrying provisions to the
Cape de Verde Islands; the private instructions given were carried into
effect when the caravel departed thence. It stood westward for several
days; but then the weather grew stormy, and the pilots having no zeal to
stimulate them, and seeing nothing but an immeasurable waste of wild,
trembling waves still extending before them, lost all courage to
proceed. They put back to the Cape de Verde Islands, and thence to
Lisbon, excusing their own want of resolution by ridiculing the project
of Columbus. On discovering this act of treachery, Columbus instantly
quitted Portugal.--_Hist. del Almirante_, cap. viii.; Herrera, Dec. I.,
lib. i., cap. vii.; Munoz, _Hist. del Nuevo Mundo_, lib. ii.--Quoted by

[Footnote 42: "Le Vendredi n'étant pas regardé dans la Chrétienté comme
un jour de bon augure pour le commencement d'une entreprise, les
historiens du 17[me] siècle, qui gémissaient déjà sur les maux dont,
selon eux, l'Europe a été accablé par la découverte de l'Amérique, on
fait remarque que Colomb est parti pour la première expédition
_vendredi_, 3 août 1492, et que la première terre d'Amérique a été
découverte _vendredi_ 12 Octobre de la même année. La réformation du
calendrier appliquée au journal de Colomb, qui indique toujours à la
fois, les jours de la semaine et la date du mois, feroit disparoître le
pronostic du jour fatal."--Humboldt's _Géog. du Nouveau Continent_, vol.
iii., p. 160.]

[Footnote 43: His first landing in the New World partook of the same
character as his departure from the Old.

"Christoforo Colombo--primo con una bandiera nella quale era figurato il
nostro Signore Jesu Christo in croce, saltô in terra, e quella piantò, e
poi tutti gli alti smontarono, e inginocchiati baciarono la terra, tre
volti piangendo di allegrezza. Di poi Colombo alzate le mani al cielo
lagrimando disse, Signor Dio Eterno, Signore omnipotente, tu creasti il
cielo, e la terra, e il mare con la tua santa parola, sia benedetto e
glorificato il nome tuo, sia ringraziata la tua Maestà, la quale si è
degnata per mano d' uno umil suo servo far ch' el suo santo nome sia
conosciuto e divulgato in questa altra parte del mondo."--Pietro
Martire, _Dell' Indie Occidentali_, in Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 2; Oviedo,
_Hist. Gen. dell' India_.]

[Footnote 44: Columbus not only has, incontestably, the merit of first
discovering the line where there is no declination of the needle, but
also of first inducing a study of terrestrial magnetism in Europe, by
his observations concerning the increasing declination as he sailed in a
westerly direction from that line. It had been already easily recognized
in the Mediterranean, and in all places where, in the twelfth century,
the declination was as much as eight or ten degrees, even though their
instruments were so imperfect that the ends of a magnetic needle did not
point exactly to the geographical north or south. It is improbable that
the Arabs or Crusaders drew attention to the fact of the compass
pointing to the northeast and northwest in different parts of the world,
as to a phenomenon which had long been known. The merit which belongs to
Columbus is, not for the first observance of the existence of the
declination, which is given, for example, upon the map of Andrew Bianca,
in 1436, but for the remark which he made on the 13th of September,
1492, that about two degrees and a half to the east of the Island of
Corvo the magnetic variation changed, and that it passed over from
northeast to northwest. This discovery of a magnetic line without any
variation indicates a remarkable epoch in nautical astronomy. It was
celebrated with just praise by Oviedo, Casas, and Herrera. If with Livio
Sanuto we ascribe it to the renowned mariner Sebastian Cabot, we forget
that his first voyage, which was undertaken at the expense of some
merchants of Bristol, and which was crowned with success by his touching
the main-land of America, falls five years later than the first
expedition of Columbus.--Humboldt's _Cosmos_, vol. ii., p. 318; Las
Casas, _Hist. Ind._, lib. i., cap. 6.]

[Footnote 45: "In sailing toward the West India Islands birds are often
seen at the distance of two hundred leagues from the nearest
coast."--Sloane's _Nat. Hist. of Jamaica_, vol. i., p. 30.

Captain Cook says, "No one yet knows to what distance any of the Oceanic
birds go to sea; for my own part, I do not believe that there is any one
of the whole tribe that can be relied on in pointing out the vicinity of
land."--_Voyage toward the South Pole_, vol. i., p. 275.

The Portuguese, however, only keeping along the African coast and
watching the flight of birds with attention, concluded that they did not
venture to fly far from land. Columbus adopted this erroneous opinion
from his early instructors in navigation.]

[Footnote 46: "Puesto que el amirante a los diez de la noche viò lumbre
... y era como una candelilla de cera que se alzaba y levantaba, lo cual
a pocos pareciera ser indicio de tierra. Pero el amirante tuvò por
cierto estar junto a la tierra. Por lo qual quando dijeron la 'Salve'
que acostumbran decir y cantar a su manera todos los marineros, y de
hallan todos, vogo y amonestòlos el amirante que hiciesen buena guarda
al castillo de proa, y mirasen bien por la tierra."--_Diar. de Colon.
Prem. Viag. 11 de Oct._]

[Footnote 47: "Let those who are disposed to faint under difficulties,
in the prosecution of any great and worthy undertaking, remember that
eighteen years elapsed after the time that Columbus conceived his
enterprise before he was enabled to carry it into effect; that most of
that time was passed in almost hopeless solicitation, amid poverty,
neglect, and taunting ridicule; that the prime of his life had wasted
away in the struggle, and that, when his perseverance was finally
crowned with success, he was about in his fifty-sixth year. This example
should encourage the enterprising never to despair."--Washington
Irving's _Life of Columbus_, vol. i., p. 174.]

[Footnote 48: "While Columbus lay on a sick-bed by the River Belem, he
was addressed in a dream by an unknown voice, distinctly uttering these
words: 'Maravillósamente Dios hizo sonar tu nombre en la tierra; de los
atamientos de la Mar Oceana, que estaban cerradas con cadenas tan
fuertes, te dió las llaves.' (Letter to the Catholic monarch, July 7th,
1503.)"--Humboldt's _Cosmos_.]

[Footnote 49: See Appendix, No. XIII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 50: "The application to King Henry VII. was not made until
1488, as would appear from the inscription on a map which Bartholomew
presented to the king. Las Casas intimates, from letters and writings of
Bartholomew Columbus, in his possession, that the latter accompanied
Bartholomew Diaz in his voyage from Lisbon, in 1486, along the coast of
Africa, in the course of which he discovered the Cape of Good
Hope."--Las Casas, _Hist. Ind._, lib. i., cap. vii.]

[Footnote 51: "The American Continent was first discovered under the
auspices of the English, and the coast of the United States by a native
of England (Sebastian Cabot told me that he was born in
Bristowe)."--_History of the Travayles in the East and West Indies_, by
R. Eden and R. Willes, 1577. fol. 267. Posterity hardly remembered that
they[52] (the Cabots) had reached the American Continent nearly four
months before Columbus, on his third voyage, came in sight of the
main-land.--Bancroft's _Hist. of the United States_, vol. i., p. 11.
Charlevoix's "Histoire de la Nouvelle France," and the "Fastes
Chronologiques," endeavor to discredit the discoveries of John and
Sebastian Cabot, but the testimonies of cotemporary authors are
decisive. Unfortunately, no journal or relation remains of the voyages
of the Cabots to North America, but several authors have handed down
accounts of them, which they received from the lips of Sebastian Cabot
himself. See Hakluyt, iii., 27; Galearius Butrigarius, in Ramusio, tom.
ii.; Ramusio, Preface to tom. iii.; Peter Martyr ab Angleria, Dec. III.,
cap. vi.; Gomara, _Gen. Hist. of the West Indies_, b. ii., c. vi. In
Fabian's Chronicle, the writer asserts that he saw, in the sixteenth
year of Henry VII., two out of three men who had been brought from
"Newfound Island" two years before. The grant made by Edward VI. to
Sebastian Cabot of a pension equal to £1000 per annum of our money,
attests that "the good and acceptable service" for which it was
conferred was of a very important nature. The words of the grant are
handed down to us by Hakluyt, vol. iii., p. 31.--See _Life of Henry
VII._, by Lord Bacon; Bacon's _Works_, vol. iii., p. 356, 357.]

[Footnote 52: "The only immediate fruit of Cabot's first enterprise is
said to have been the importation from America of the first turkeys ever
seen in Europe. Why this bird received the name it enjoys in England has
never been satisfactorily explained. By the French it was called 'Coq
d'Inde,' on account of its American original, America being then
generally termed Western India."--Graham's _Hist. of the United States_,
vol. i., p. 7.]

[Footnote 53: Baccalaos was the name given by the natives to the codfish
with which these waters abounded. Pietro Martire, who calls Sebastian
Cabot his "dear and familiar friend," speaks of Newfoundland as
Baccalaos; also, Lopez de Gomara and Ramusio.]

[Footnote 54: Mr. Bancroft pronounces this "fact to be indisputable,"
though he acknowledges that "the testimony respecting this expedition is
confused and difficult of explanation." Sebastian Cabot wrote "A
Discourse of Navigation," in which the entrance of the strait leading
into Hudson's Bay was laid down with great precision "on a card, drawn
by his own hand."--Ortelius, _Map of America in Theatrum Orbis
Terrarum_; Eden and Willis, p. 223; Sir H. Gilbert, in Hakluyt, vol.
iii., p. 49, 50; Bancroft, vol. i., p. 12.]

[Footnote 55: The learned and ingenious author of the "Memoirs of
Sebastian Cabot" has brought forward strong arguments against the
discovery of the Continent of America by Jean Vas Cortereal in
1494.--Humboldt's _Géog. du Nouveau Continent_, vol. i., p. 279; vol.
ii., p. 25.

"The discoverer of the territory of our country was one of the most
extraordinary men of his age. There is deep cause for regret that time
has spared so few memorials of his career. He gave England a continent,
and no one knows his burial-place."--Bancroft, vol. i., p. 14.]

[Footnote 56: Ramusio, vol. iii., p. 417. This discovery is also
attributed to Jacques Cartier, who entered the gulf on the 10th of
August, 1535, and gave it the name of the saint whose festival was
celebrated on that day.--Charlevoix.]

[Footnote 57: In an old map published in 1508, the Labrador coast is
called Terra Corterealis.]

[Footnote 58: It has been conjectured that the name Terra de Laborador
was given to this coast by the Portuguese slave merchants, on account of
the admirable qualities of the natives as laborers.--_Picture of

[Footnote 59: It was an idea entertained by Columbus, that, as he
extended his discoveries to climates more and more under the torrid
influence of the sun, he should find the productions of nature
sublimated by its rays to more perfect and precious qualities. He was
strengthened in this belief by a letter written to him, at the command
of the queen, by one Jayme Ferrer, an eminent and learned lapidary, who,
in the course of his trading for precious stones and metals, had been in
the Levant and in various parts of the East; had conversed with the
merchants of the remote parts of Asia and Africa, and the natives of
India, Arabia, and Ethiopia, and was considered deeply versed in
geography generally, but especially in the nature of those countries
from whence the valuable merchandise in which he dealt was procured. In
this letter Ferrer assured Columbus that, according to his experience,
the rarest objects of commerce, such as gold, precious stones, drugs,
and spices, were chiefly to be found in the regions about the
equinoctial line, where the inhabitants were black, or darkly colored,
and that until the admiral should arrive among people of such
complexions, he did not think he would find those articles in great
abundance.--Navarrete, _Coleccion_, tom. ii., Document 68.]

[Footnote 60: Ramusio, vol. iii., p. 347; Charlevoix, vol. i., p. 36;
see Osorio, History of the Portuguese, b. i.; Barrow's Voyages, p.
37-48; Herrera, Dec. 1., lib. vii., cap. ix.; Ensayo Chronologico para
la Historia general de la Florida. En Madrid, 1723.--Quoted by Murray.]

[Footnote 61: "Les demandes ordinaires qu'on nous fait sont, 'Y a-t-il
des trésors? Y a-t-il de l'or et de l'argent?' Et personne ne demande,
'Ces peuples là sont il disposés à entendre la doctrine Chrétienne?' Et
quant aux mines, il y en a vraiment, mais il les faut fouiller avec
industrie, labeur et patience. La plus belle mine que je sache, c'est du
bled et du vin, avec la nourriture du bestial; qui a de ceci, il a de
l'argent, et des mines, nous n'en vivons point."--Marc l'Escarbot.]

[Footnote 62: This bold stretch of papal authority, so often ridiculed
as chimerical and absurd, was in a measure justified by the event, since
it did, in fact, determine the principle on which the vast extent of
unappropriated empire in the eastern and western hemispheres was
ultimately divided between two petty states of Europe. Alexander had not
even the excuse that he thought he was disposing of uncultivated and
uninhabited regions, since he specifies in his donation both towns and
castles: "Civitates et castra in perpetuum tenore præsentium donamus."]

[Footnote 63: "What," said Francis I., "shall the kings of Spain and
Portugal divide all America between them, without suffering me to take a
share as their brother? I would fain see the article in Adam's will that
bequeaths that vast inheritance to them."--_Encyclopedia_, vol. iv., p.

[Footnote 64: "In the latter years of his life, Francis, by a strict
economy of the public money, repaired the evils of his early
extravagance, while, at the same time, he was enabled to spare
sufficient for carrying on the magnificent public institutions he had
undertaken, and for forwarding the progress of discovery, of the fine
arts, and of literature."--Bacon's _Life and Times of Francis I._, p.

[Footnote 65: See Appendix, No. XIV. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 66: "Navigò anche lungo la detta terra l'anno 1524 un gran
capitano del Re Christianissimo Francesco, detto Giovanni da Verazzano,
Fiorentino, e scorse tutta la costa fino alla Florida, come per una sua
lettera scritta al detto Re, particolarmente si vedià la qual sola
abbiamo potuto avere perciocchè l'altre si sono smarrite nelli travagli
della povera città di Fiorenza e nell' ultimo viaggio che esso fece,
avendo voluto smontar in terra con alcuni compagni, furono tutti morti
da quei popoli, e in presentia di colóro che erano rimasi nelle navi,
furono arrostiti e mangeati." (Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 416.) The Baron La
Houtan and La Potherie give the same account of Verazzano's end; they
are not, however, very trustworthy authorities. Le Beau repeats the same
story; but Charlevoix's words are, "Je ne trouve aucun fondement à ce
que quelques uns ont publié, qu'ayant mis pied à terre dans un endroit
où il voulait bâtir un fort, les sauvages se jetèrent sur lui, le
massacrèrent avec tous ses gens et le mangèrent." A Spanish historian
has asserted, contrary to all probability, that Verazzano was taken by
the Spaniards, and hung as a pirate.--D. Andrès Gonzalez de Barcia,
_Ensayo Chronologico para la Historia della Florida_.]

[Footnote 67: Tiraboschi, _Storia della Literatura Italiana_, vol. vii.,
p. 261, 262.--Quoted in the _Picture of Quebec_, to which valuable work
J.C. Fisher, Esq., president of the Literary and Historical Society of
Quebec, largely contributed.]

[Footnote 68: Signifying "here is nothing." The insatiable thirst of the
Spanish discoverers for gold is justified by the greatest of all
discoverers, the disinterested Columbus himself, on high religious
principles. When acquainting their Castilian majesties with the
abundance of gold[69] to be procured in the newly-found countries, he
thus speaks, "El oro es excelentisimo, del oro se hace tesoro; y con el
quien lo tiene hace quanto quiere en el mundo, y elega a que echa las
animas al paraiso." (Navarrete, _Coleccion de los Viages_, vol. i., p.
309.) A passage which the modern editor of his papers affirms to be in
conformity with many texts of Scripture.]

[Footnote 69: The historian Herrera, writing in the light of experience,
makes use of the strong expression, that "mines were a lure devised by
the evil spirit to draw the Spaniards on to destruction." "L'Espagne,"
says Montesquieu, "a fait comme ce roi insensé, qui demanda que tout ce
qu'il toucheroit se convertit en or, et qui fut obligé de revenir aux
Dieux, pour les prier de finir sa misère."--_Esprit des Loix_, lib.
xxi., cap. 22.

"Les mines du Pérou et du Mexique ne valoient pas même pour l'Espagne ce
qu'elle auroit tire du son propre fonds en los cultivant. Avec tant de
trésors Philippe II. fit banqueroute."--Millot. "Pâturage et labourage,"
said the wise Sully, "valent mieux que tout l'or du Pérou."]

[Footnote 70: Father Hennepin asserts that the Spaniards were the first
discoverers of Canada, and that, finding nothing there to gratify their
extensive desires for gold, they bestowed upon it the appellation of El
Capo di Nada, "Cape Nothing," whence, by corruption, its present
name.--_Nouvelle Description d'un très grand pays situé dans l'Amérique
entre le Nouveau Mexique et la Mer Glaciale, depuis l'an_ 1667 _jusqu'
en_ 1670. _Par le Père Louis Hennepin, Missionaire Recollet à Utrecht_,

La Potherie gives the same derivation. _Histoire de l'Amérique
Septentrionale par M. de Bacqueville de la Potherie, à Paris_, 1722. The
opinion expressed in a note of Charlevoix (Histoire de la Nouvelle
France, vol. i., p. 13), is that deserving most credit. "D'autres
dérivent ce nom du mot Iroquois 'Kannata,' qui se prononce Cannada, et
signifie un amas de cabanes." This derivation would reconcile the
different assertions of the early discoverers, some of whom give the
name of Canada to the whole valley of the St. Lawrence; others, equally
worthy of credit, confine it to a small district in the neighborhood of
Stadacona (now Quebec). _Seconda Relatione di Jacques Cartier_, in
Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 442, 447. "Questo popolo (di Hochelaga) non
partendo mai del lore paese, ne essendo vagabondi, come quelli di Canada
e di Saguenay benchè dette di Canada sieno lor suggetti con otte o nove
altri villaggi posti sopra detto fiume." Father du Creux, who arrived in
Canada about the year 1625, in his "Historia Canadensis," gives the name
of Canada to the whole valley of the St. Lawrence, confessing, however,
his ignorance of the etymology: "Porro de Etymologiâ vocis Canada nihil
satis certè potui comperire; priscam quidem esse, constat ex eo, quod
illam ante annos prope sexaginta passim usurpari audiebam puer."

Duponçeau, in the Transactions of the Philosophical Society of
Philadelphia, founds his conjecture of the Indian origin of the name of
Canada upon the fact that, in the translation of the Gospel of St.
Matthew into the Mohawk tongue, made by Brandt, the Indian chief, the
word Canada is always used to signify a village. The mistake of the
early discoverers, in taking the name of a part for that of the whole,
is very pardonable in persons ignorant of the Indian language. It is
highly improbable that at the period of its discovery the name of Canada
was extended over this immense country. The migratory habits of the
aborigines are alone conclusive against it. They distinguished
themselves by their different tribes, not by the country over which they
hunted and rode at will. They more probably gave names to localities
than adopted their own from any fixed place of residence. The Iroquois
and the Ottawas conferred their appellations on the rivers that ran
through their hunting grounds, and the Huron tribe gave theirs to the
vast lake now bearing their name. It has, however, never been pretended
that any Indian tribe bore the name of Canada, and the natural
conclusion therefore is, that the word "Canada" was a mere local
appellation, without reference to the country; that each tribe had their
own "Canada," or collection of huts, which shifted its position
according to their migrations.

Dr. Douglas, in his "American History," pretends that Canada derives its
name from Monsieur Kane or Cane, whom he advances to have been the first
adventurer in the River St. Lawrence.--Knox's _Historical Journal_, vol.
i., p. 303.]


In the year 1534, Philip Chabot, admiral of France, urged the king to
establish a colony in the New World,[71] by representing to him in
glowing colors the great riches and power derived by the Spaniards from
their transatlantic possessions. Francis I., alive to the importance of
the design, soon agreed to carry it out. JACQUES CARTIER, an experienced
navigator of St. Malo, was recommended by the admiral to be intrusted
with the expedition, and was approved of by the king. On the 20th of
April, 1534, Cartier sailed from St. Malo with two ships of only sixty
tons burden each, and one hundred and twenty men for their crews:[72] he
directed his course westward, inclining rather to the north; the winds
proved so favorable, that on the twentieth day of the voyage he made
Cape Bonavista, in Newfoundland. But the harbors of that dreary country
were still locked up in the winter's ice, forbidding the approach of
shipping: he then bent to the southeast, and at length found anchorage
at St. Catharine, six degrees lower in latitude. Having remained here
ten days, he again turned to the north, and on the 21st of May reached
Bird Island, fourteen leagues from the coast.

Jacques Cartier examined all the northern shores of Newfoundland,
without having ascertained that it was an island, and then passed
southward through the Straits of Belleisle. The country appeared every
where the same bleak and inhospitable wilderness;[73] but the harbors
were numerous, convenient, and abounding in fish. He describes the
natives as well-proportioned men, wearing their hair tied up over their
heads like bundles of hay, quaintly interlaced with birds' feathers.[74]
Changing his course still more to the south, he then traversed the Gulf
of St. Lawrence, approached the main-land, and on the 9th of July
entered a deep bay; from the intense heat experienced there, he named it
the "Baye de Chaleurs." The beauty of the country, and the kindness and
hospitality of his reception, alike charmed him; he carried on a little
trade with the friendly savages, exchanging European goods for their
furs and provisions.

Leaving this bay, Jacques Cartier visited a considerable extent of the
gulf coast; on the 24th of July he erected a cross thirty feet high,
with a shield bearing the fleurs-de-lys of France, on the shore of Gaspé
Bay.[75] Having thus taken possession[76] of the country for his king in
the usual manner of those days, he sailed, the 25th of July, on his
homeward voyage: at this place two of the natives were seized by
stratagem, carried on board the ships, and borne away to France. Cartier
coasted along the northern shores of the Gulf till the 15th of August,
and even entered the mouth of the River St. Lawrence, but the weather
becoming stormy, he determined to delay his departure no longer: he
passed again through the Straits of Belleisle, and arrived at St. Malo
on the 5th of September, 1534, contented with his success, and full of
hope for the future.

Jacques Cartier was received with the consideration due to the
importance of his report. The court at once perceived the advantage of
an establishment in this part of America, and resolved to take steps for
its foundation. Charles de Moncy, Sieur de la Mailleraye, vice-admiral
of France, was the most active patron of the undertaking; through his
influence Cartier obtained a more effective force, and a new commission,
with ampler powers than before. When the preparations for the voyage
were completed, the adventurers all assembled in the Cathedral of St.
Malo, on Whitsunday, 1535, by the command of their pious leader; the
bishop then gave them a solemn benediction, with all the imposing
ceremonials of the Romish Church.

On the 19th of May Jacques Cartier embarked, and started on his voyage
with fair wind and weather. The fleet consisted of three small ships,
the largest being only one hundred and twenty tons burden. Many
adventurers and young men of good family accompanied the expedition as
volunteers. On the morrow the wind became adverse, and rose to a storm;
the heavens lowered over the tempestuous sea; for more than a month the
utmost skill of the mariners could only enable them to keep their ships
afloat, while tossed about at the mercy of the waves. The little fleet
was dispersed on the 25th of June: each vessel then made for the coast
of Newfoundland as it best might. The general's vessel, as that of
Cartier was called, was the first to gain the land, on the 7th of July,
and there awaited her consorts; but they did not arrive till the 26th of
the month. Having taken in supplies of fuel and water, they sailed in
company to explore the Gulf of St. Lawrence. A violent storm arose on
the 1st of August, forcing them to seek shelter. They happily found a
port on the north shore, at the entrance of the Great River, where,
though difficult of access, there was a safe anchorage. Jacques Cartier
called it St. Nicolas, and it is now almost the only place still bearing
the name he gave. They left their harbor on the 7th, coasting westward
along the north shore, and on the 10th came to a gulf filled with
numerous and beautiful islands.[77] Cartier gave this gulf the name of
St. Lawrence, having discovered it on that saint's festival day.[78]

On the 15th of August they reached a long, rocky island toward the
south, which Cartier named L'Isle de l'Assumption, now called
Anticosti.[79] Thence they continued their course, examining carefully
both shores of the Great River,[80] and occasionally holding
communication with the inhabitants, till, on the 1st of September, they
entered the mouth of the deep and gloomy Saguenay. The entrance of this
great tributary was all they had leisure to survey; but the huge rocks,
dense forests, and vast body of water, forming a scene of somber
magnificence such as had never before met their view, inspired them with
an exalted idea of the country they had discovered. Still passing to the
southwest up the St. Lawrence, on the 6th they reached an island
abounding in delicious filberts, and on that account named by the
voyagers Isle aux Coudres. Cartier, being now so far advanced into an
unknown country, looked out anxiously for a port where his vessels might
winter in safety. He pursued his voyage till he came upon another
island, of great extent, fertility, and beauty, covered with woods and
thick, clustering vines. This he named Isle de Bacchus:[81] it is now
called Orleans. On the 7th of September, Donnacona, the chief of the
country,[82] came with twelve canoes filled by his train, to hold
converse with the strangers, whose ships lay at anchor between the
island and the north shore of the Great River. The Indian chief
approached the smallest of the ships with only two canoes, fearful of
causing alarm, and began an oration, accompanied with strange and
uncouth gestures. After a time he conversed with the Indians who had
been seized on the former voyage, and now acted as interpreters. He
heard from them of their wonderful visit to the great nation over the
salt lake, of the wisdom and power of the white men, and of the kind
treatment they had received among the strangers. Donnacona appeared
moved with deep respect and admiration; he took Jacques Cartier's arm
and placed it gently over his own bended neck, in token of confidence
and regard. The admiral cordially returned these friendly
demonstrations. He entered the Indian's canoe, and presented bread and
wine, which they ate and drank together. They then parted in all amity.

After this happy interview, Jacques Cartier, with his boats, pushed up
the north shore against the stream, till he reached a spot where a
little river flowed into a "goodly and pleasant sound," forming a
convenient haven.[83] He moored his vessels here for the winter on the
16th of September, and gave the name of St. Croix to the stream, in
honor of the day on which he first entered its waters; Donnacona,
accompanied by a train of five hundred Indians, came to welcome his
arrival with generous friendship. In the angle formed by the tributary
stream and the Great River, stood the town of Stadacona, the
dwelling-place of the chief; thence an irregular slope ascended to a
lofty height of table-land: from this eminence a bold headland frowned
over the St. Lawrence, forming a rocky wall three hundred feet in
height. The waters of the Great River--here narrowed to less than a mile
in breath--rolled deeply and rapidly past into the broad basin beyond.
When the white men first stood on the summit of this bold headland,
above their port of shelter, most of the country was fresh from the hand
of the Creator; save the three small barks lying at the mouth of the
stream, and the Indian village, no sign of human habitation met their
view. Far as the eye could reach, the dark forest spread; over hill and
valley, mountain and plain; up to the craggy peaks, down to the blue
water's edge; along the gentle slopes of the rich Isle of Bacchus, and
even from projecting rocks, and in fissures of the lofty precipice, the
deep green mantle of the summer foliage hung its graceful folds. In the
dim distance, north, south, east, and west, where mountain rose above
mountain in tumultuous variety of outline, it was still the same; one
vast leafy vail concealed the virgin face of Nature from the stranger's
sight. On the eminence commanding this scene of wild but magnificent
beauty, a prosperous city now stands; the patient industry of man has
felled that dense forest, tree by tree, for miles and miles around, and
where it stood, rich fields rejoice the eye; the once silent waters of
the Great River below now surge against hundreds of stately ships;
commerce has enriched this spot, art adorned it; a memory of glory
endears it to every British heart. But the name QUEBEC[85] still remains
unchanged; as the savage first pronounced it to the white stranger, it
stands to-day among the proudest records of our country's story.

The chief Donnacona and the French continued in friendly intercourse,
day by day exchanging good offices and tokens of regard. But Jacques
Cartier was eager for further discoveries; the two Indian interpreters
told him that a city of much larger size than Stadacona lay further up
the river, the capital of a great country; it was called in the native
tongue Hochelaga; thither he resolved to find his way. The Indians
endeavored vainly to dissuade their dangerous guests from this
expedition; they represented the distance, the lateness of the season,
the danger of the great lakes and rapid currents; at length they had
recourse to a kind of masquerade or pantomime, to represent the perils
of the voyage, and the ferocity of the tribes inhabiting that distant
land. The interpreters earnestly strove to dissuade Jacques Cartier from
proceeding on his enterprise, and one of them refused to accompany him.
The brave Frenchman would not hearken to such dissuasions, and treated
with equal contempt the verbal and pantomimic warnings of the alleged
difficulties. As a precautionary measure to impress the savages with an
exalted idea of his power as a friend or foe, he caused twelve cannon
loaded with bullets to be fired in their presence against a wood; amazed
and terrified at the noise, and the effects of this discharge, they
fled, howling and shrieking, away.

Jacques Cartier sailed for Hochelaga on the 19th of September; he took
with him the Hermerillon, one of his smallest ships, the pinnace, and
two long-boats, bearing thirty-five armed men, with their provisions and
ammunition. The two larger vessels and their crews were left in the
harbor of St. Croix, protected by poles and stakes driven into the water
so as to form a barricade. The voyage presented few of the threatened
difficulties; the country on both sides of the Great River was rich and
varied, covered with stately timber, and abounding in vines. The natives
were every where friendly and hospitable; all that they possessed was
freely offered to the strangers. At a place called Hochelai, the chief
of the district visited the French, and showed much friendship and
confidence, presenting Jacques Cartier with a girl seven years of age,
one of his own children.

On the 29th, the expedition was stopped in Lake St. Pierre by the
shallows, not having hit upon the right channel. Jacques Cartier took
the resolution of leaving his larger vessels behind and proceeding with
his two boats; he met with no further interruption, and at length
reached Hochelaga on the 2d of October, accompanied by De Pontbriand, De
la Pommeraye, and De Gozelle, three of his volunteers. The natives
welcomed him with every demonstration of joy and hospitality; above a
thousand people, of all ages and sexes, come forth to meet the
strangers, greeting them with affectionate kindness. Jacques Cartier, in
return for their generous reception, bestowed presents of tin, beads,
and other bawbles upon all the women, and gave some knives to the men.
He returned to pass the night in the boats, while the savages made great
fires on the shore, and danced merrily all night long. The place where
the French first landed was probably about eleven miles from the city
of Hochelaga, below the rapid of St. Mary.

On the day after his arrival Jacques Cartier proceeded to the town; his
volunteers and some others of his followers accompanied him, arrayed in
full dress; three of the natives undertook to guide them on their way.
The road was well beaten, and bore evidence of having been much
frequented: the country through which it passed was exceedingly rich and
fertile. Hochelaga stood in the midst of great fields of Indian corn; it
was of a circular form, containing about fifty large huts, each fifty
paces long and from fourteen to fifteen wide, all built in the shape of
tunnels, formed of wood, and covered with birch bark; the dwellings were
divided into several rooms, surrounding an open court in the center,
where the fires burned. Three rows of palisades encircled the town, with
only one entrance; above the gate, and over the whole length of the
outer ring of defense, there was a gallery, approached by flights of
steps, and plentifully provided with stones and other missiles to resist
attack. This was a place of considerable importance, even in those
remote days, as the capital of a great extent of country, and as having
eight or ten villages subject to its sway.

The inhabitants spoke the language of the great Huron nation, and were
more advanced in civilization than any of their neighbors: unlike other
tribes, they cultivated the ground and remained stationary. The French
were well received by the people of Hochelaga; they made presents, the
Indians gave fêtes; their fire-arms, trumpets, and other warlike
equipments filled the minds of their simple hosts with wonder and
admiration, and their beards and clothing excited a curiosity which the
difficulties of an unknown language prevented from being satisfied. So
great was the veneration for the white men, that the chief of the town,
and many of the maimed, sick, and infirm, came to Jacques Cartier,
entreating him, by expressive signs, to cure their ills. The pious
Frenchman disclaimed any supernatural power, but he read aloud part of
the Gospel of St. John, made the sign of the cross over the sufferers,
and presented them with chaplets and other holy symbols; he then prayed
earnestly that the poor savages might be freed from the night of
ignorance and infidelity. The Indians regarded these acts and words with
deep gratitude and respectful admiration.

Three miles from Hochelaga, there was a lofty hill, well tilled and very
fertile;[86] thither Jacques Cartier bent his way, after having examined
the town. From the summit he saw the river and the country for thirty
leagues around, a scene of singular beauty. To this hill he gave the
name of Mont Royal; since extended to the large and fertile island on
which it stands, and to the city below. Time has now swept away every
trace of Hochelaga; on its site the modern capital of Canada has arisen;
fifty thousand people of European race, and stately buildings of carved
stone, replace the simple Indians and the huts of the ancient town.

Jacques Cartier, having made his observations, returned to the boats,
attended by a great concourse; when any of his men appeared fatigued
with their journey, the kind Indians carried them on their shoulders.
This short stay of the French seemed to sadden and displease these
hospitable people, and on the departure of the boats they followed their
course for some distance along the banks of the river. On the 4th of
October Jacques Cartier reached the shallows, where the pinnace had been
left; he resumed his course the following day, and arrived at St. Croix
on the 11th of the same month.

The men who had remained at St. Croix had busied themselves during their
leader's absence in strengthening their position, so as to secure it
against surprise, a wise precaution under any circumstances among a
savage people, but especially in the neighborhood of a populous town,
the residence of a chief whose friendship they could not but distrust,
in spite of his apparent hospitality.

The day after Jacques Cartier's arrival, Donnacona came to bid him
welcome, and entreated him to visit Stadacona. He accepted the
invitation, and proceeded with his volunteers and fifty sailors to the
village, about three miles from where the ships lay. As they journeyed
on, they observed that the houses were well provided and stored for the
coming winter, and the country tilled in a manner showing that the
inhabitants were not ignorant of agriculture; thus they formed, on the
whole, a favorable impression of the docility and intelligence of the
Indians during this expedition.

When the awful and unexpected severity of the winter set in, the French
were unprovided with necessary clothing and proper provisions; the
scurvy attacked them, and by the month of March twenty-five were dead,
and nearly all were infected; the remainder would probably have also
perished; but when Jacques Cartier was himself attacked with the
dreadful disease, the Indians revealed to him the secret of its cure:
this was the decoction of the leaf and bark of a certain tree, which
proved so excellent a remedy that in a few days all were restored to

Jacques Cartier, on the 21st of April, was first led to suspect the
friendship of the natives from seeing a number of strong and active
young men make their appearance in the neighboring town; these were
probably the warriors of the tribe, who had just then returned from the
hunting grounds, where they had passed the winter, but there is now no
reason to suppose that their presence indicated any hostility. However,
Jacques Cartier, fearing treachery, determined to anticipate it. He had
already arranged to depart for France. On the 3d of May he seized the
chief, the interpreters, and two other Indians, to present them to
Francis I.: as some amends for this cruel and flagrant violation of
hospitality, he treated his prisoners with great kindness; they soon
became satisfied with their fate. On the 6th of May he made sail for
Europe, and, after having encountered some difficulties and delays,
arrived safely at St. Malo the 8th of July, 1536.

The result of Jacques Cartier's expedition was not encouraging to the
spirit of enterprise in France; no mines had been discovered,[88] no
rare and valuable productions found.[89] The miserable state to which
the adventurers had been reduced by the rigorous climate and loathsome
diseases, the privations they had endured, the poverty of their
condition, were sufficient to cool the ardor of those who might
otherwise have wished to follow up their discoveries. But, happily for
the cause of civilization, some of those powerful in France judged more
favorably of Jacques Cartier's reports, and were not to be disheartened
by the unsuccessful issue of one undertaking; the dominion over such a
vast extent of country, with fertile soil and healthy climate, inhabited
by a docile and hospitable people, was too great an object to be lightly
abandoned. The presence of Donnacona, the Indian chief, tended to keep
alive an interest in the land whence he had come; as soon as he could
render himself intelligible in the French language, he confirmed all
that had been said of the salubrity, beauty, and richness of his native
country. The pious Jacques Cartier most of all strove to impress upon
the king the glory and merit of extending the blessed knowledge of a
Savior to the dark and hopeless heathens of the West; a deed well worthy
of the prince who bore the title of Most Christian King and Eldest Son
of the Church.

Jean François de la Roque, lord of Roberval, a gentleman of Picardy, was
the most earnest and energetic of those who desired to colonize the
lands discovered by Jacques Cartier; he bore a high reputation in his
own province, and was favored by the friendship of the king. With these
advantages he found little difficulty in obtaining a commission to
command an expedition to North America; the title and authority of
lieutenant general and viceroy was conferred upon him; his rule to
extend over Canada, Hochelaga, Saguenay, Newfoundland, Belle Isle,
Carpon, Labrador, La Grand Baye, and Baccalaos, with the delegated
rights and powers of the crown. This patent was dated the 15th of
January, 1540. Jacques Cartier was named second in command. The orders
to the leaders of the expedition enjoined them to discover more than had
been hitherto accomplished, and, if possible, to reach the country of
Saguenay, where, from some reports of the Indians, they still hoped to
find mines of gold and silver. The port of St. Malo was again chosen for
the fitting out of the expedition: the king furnished a sum of money to
defray the expenses.[90]

Jacques Cartier exerted himself vigorously in preparing the little fleet
for the voyage, and awaited the arrival of his chief with the necessary
arms, stores, and ammunition; Roberval was meanwhile engaged at Honfleur
in fitting out two other vessels at his own cost, and being urged to
hasten by the king, he gave his lieutenant orders to start at once, with
full authority to act as if he himself were present. He also promised to
follow from Honfleur with all the required supplies. Jacques Cartier
sailed on the 23d of May, 1541, having provisioned his fleet for two
years. Storms and adverse winds dispersed the ships for some time, but
in about a month they all met again on the coast of Newfoundland, where
they hoped Roberval would join them. They awaited his coming for some
weeks, but at length proceeded without him to the St. Lawrence; on the
23d of August they reached their old station near the magnificent
headland of Quebec.

Donnacona's successor as chief of the Indians at Stadacona came in state
to welcome the French on their return, and to inquire after his absent
countrymen. They told him of the chief's death, but concealed the fate
of the other Indians, stating that they were enjoying great honor and
happiness in France, and would not return to their own country. The
savages displayed no symptoms of anger, surprise, or distrust at this
news; their countenances exhibited the same impassive calm, their
manners the same quiet dignity as ever; but from that hour their hearts
were changed; hatred and hostility took the place of admiration and
respect, and a sad foreboding of their approaching destruction darkened
their simple minds. Henceforth the French were hindered and molested by
the inhabitants of Stadacona to such an extent that it was deemed
advisable to seek another settlement for the winter. Jacques Cartier
chose his new position at the mouth of a small river three leagues
higher on the St. Lawrence;[91] here he laid up some of his vessels
under the protection of two forts, one on a level with the water, the
other on the summit of an overhanging cliff; these strongholds
communicated with each other by steps cut in the solid rock; he gave the
name of Charlesbourg Royal to this new station. The two remaining
vessels of the fleet he sent back to France with letters to the king,
stating that Roberval had not yet arrived.

Under the impression that the country of the Saguenay, the land of
fabled wealth, could be reached by pursuing the line of the St.
Lawrence, Jacques Cartier set forth to explore the rapids above
Hochelaga on the 7th of September, 1541. The season being so far
advanced, he only undertook this expedition with a view to being better
acquainted with the route, and to being provided with all necessary
preparations for a more extensive exploration in the spring. In passing
up the Great River he renewed acquaintance with the friendly and
hospitable chief of Hochelai, and there left two boys under charge of
the Indians to learn the language. On the 11th he reached the sault or
rapids above Hochelaga, where the progress of the boats was arrested by
the force of the stream; he then landed and made his way to the second
rapid. The natives gave him to understand that above the next sault
there lay a great lake; Cartier, having obtained this information,
returned to where he had left the boats; about four hundred Indians had
assembled and met him with demonstrations of friendship; he received
their good offices and made them presents in return, but still regarded
them with distrust on account of their unusual numbers. Having gained
as much information as he could, he set out on his return to
Charlesbourg Royal, his winter-quarters. The chief was absent when
Jacques Cartier stopped at Hochelai on descending the river; he had gone
to Stadacona to hold counsel with the natives of that district for the
destruction of the white men. On arriving at Charlesbourg Royal, Jacques
Cartier found confirmation of his suspicions against the Indians; they
now avoided the French, and never approached the ships with their usual
offerings of fish and other provisions; a great number of men had also
assembled at Stadacona. He accordingly made every possible preparation
for defense in the forts, and took due precautions against a surprise.
There are no records extant of the events of this winter in Canada, but
it is probable that no serious encounter took place with the natives;
the French, however, must have suffered severely from the confinement
rendered necessary by their perilous position, as well as from want of
the provisions and supplies which the bitter climate made requisite.

Roberval, though high-minded and enterprising, failed in his engagements
with Jacques Cartier: he did not follow his adventurous lieutenant with
the necessary and promised supplies till the spring of the succeeding
year. On the 16th of April, 1542, he at length sailed from Rochelle with
three large vessels, equipped principally at the royal cost. Two hundred
persons accompanied him, some of them being gentlemen of condition,
others men and women purposing to become settlers in the New World. Jean
Alphonse, an experienced navigator of Saintonge, by birth a Portuguese,
was pilot of the expedition. After a very tedious voyage, they entered
the Road of St. John's, Newfoundland, on the 8th of June, where they
found no fewer than seventeen vessels engaged in the inexhaustible
fisheries of those waters.

While Roberval indulged in a brief repose at this place, the unwelcome
appearance of Jacques Cartier filled him with disappointment and
surprise. The lieutenant gave the hostility of the savages and the
weakness of his force as reasons for having abandoned the settlement
where he had passed the winter. He still, however, spoke favorably of
the richness and fertility of the country, and gladdened the eyes of
the adventurers by the sight of a substance that resembled gold ore, and
crystals that they fancied were diamonds, found on the bold headland of
Quebec. But, despite these flattering reports and promising specimens,
Jacques Cartier and his followers could not be induced, by entreaties or
persuasions, to return. The hardships and dangers of the last terrible
winter were too fresh in memory, and too keenly felt, to be again
braved. They deemed their portion of the contract already complete, and
the love of their native land overcame the spirit of adventure, which
had been weakened, if not quenched, by recent disappointment and
suffering. To avoid the chance of an open rupture with Roberval, the
lieutenant silently weighed anchor during the night, and made all sail
for France. This inglorious withdrawal from the enterprise paralyzed
Roberval's power, and deferred the permanent settlement of Canada for
generations then unborn. Jacques Cartier died soon after his return to
Europe.[92] Having sacrificed his fortune in the pursuit of discovery,
his heirs were granted an exclusive privilege of trade to Canada for
twelve years, in consideration of his sacrifices for the public good;
but this gift was revoked four months after it was bestowed.

Roberval determined to proceed on his expedition, although deprived of
the powerful assistance and valuable experience of his lieutenant. He
sailed from Newfoundland for Canada, and reached Cap Rouge, the place
where Jacques Cartier had wintered, before the end of June, 1542. He
immediately fortified himself there, as the situation best adapted for
defense against hostility, and for commanding the navigation of the
Great River. Very little is known of Roberval's proceedings during the
remainder of that year and the following winter. The natives do not
appear to have molested the new settlers; but no progress whatever was
made toward a permanent establishment. During the intense cold, the
scurvy caused fearful mischief among the French; no fewer than fifty
perished from that dreadful malady during the winter. Demoralized by
misery and idleness, the little colony became turbulent and lawless, and
Roberval was obliged to resort to extreme severity of punishment before
quiet and discipline were re-established.

Toward the close of April the ice broke up, and released the French from
their weary and painful captivity. On the 5th of June, 1543, Roberval
set forth from Cap Rouge to explore the province of Saguenay, leaving
thirty men and an officer to protect their winter-quarters: this
expedition produced no results, and was attended with the loss of one of
the boats and eight men. In the mean time the pilot, Jean Alphonse, was
dispatched to examine the coasts north of Newfoundland, in hopes of
discovering a passage to the East Indies; he reached the fifty-second
degree of latitude, and then abandoned the enterprise; on returning to
Europe, he published a narrative of Roberval's expedition and his own
voyage, with a tolerably accurate description of the River St. Lawrence,
and its navigation upward from the Gulf. Roberval reached France in
1543; the war between Francis I. and the Emperor Charles V. for some
years occupied his ardent spirit, and supplied him with new occasions
for distinction, till the death of the king, his patron and friend, in
1547. In the year 1549 he collected some adventurous men, and,
accompanied by his brave brother, Achille, sailed once again for Canada;
but none of this gallant band were ever heard of more. Thus, for many a
year, were swallowed up in the stormy Atlantic all the bright hopes of
founding a new nation in America:[93] since these daring men had failed,
none others might expect to be successful.

In the reign of Henry II., attention was directed toward Brazil;
splendid accounts of its wealth and fertility were brought home by some
French navigators who had visited that distant land. The Admiral Gaspard
de Coligni was the first to press upon the king the importance of
obtaining a footing in South America, and dividing the magnificent prize
with the Portuguese monarch. This celebrated man was convinced that an
extensive system of colonization was necessary for the glory and
tranquillity of France. He purposed that the settlement in the New World
should be founded exclusively by persons holding that Reformed faith to
which he was so deeply attached, and thus would be provided a refuge for
those driven from France by religious proscription and persecution. It
is believed that Coligni's magnificent scheme comprehended the
possession of the St. Lawrence and the Mississippi, gradually colonizing
the banks of these great rivers into the depths of the Continent, till
the whole of North America, from the Gulf of St. Lawrence to the Gulf of
Mexico, should be hemmed in by this gigantic line of French outposts.
However, the first proposition was to establish a colony on the coast of
Brazil; the king approved the project, and Durand de Villegagnon,
vice-admiral of Brittany, was selected to command in 1555; the
expedition, however, entirely failed, owing to religious differences.

Under the reigns of Francis II. and Charles IX., while France was
convulsed with civil war, America seemed altogether forgotten. But
Coligni availed himself of a brief interval of calm to turn attention
once more to the Western World. He this time bethought himself of that
country to which Ponce de Leon had given the name of Florida, from the
exuberant productions of the soil and the beauty of the scenery and
climate. The River Mississippi[94] had been discovered by Ferdinand de
Soto,[95] about the time of Jacques Cartier's last voyage, 1543;
consequently, the Spaniards had this additional claim upon the
territory, which, they affirmed, they had visited in 1512, twelve years
before the date of Verazzano's voyage in 1524. However, the claims and
rights of the different European nations upon the American Continent
were not then of sufficient strength to prevent each state from pursuing
its own views of occupation. Coligni obtained permission from Charles
IX. to attempt the establishment of a colony in Florida,[96] about the
year 1562. The king was the more readily induced to approve of this
enterprise, as he hoped that it would occupy the turbulent spirits of
the Huguenots, many of them his bitter enemies, and elements of discord
in his dominions. On the 18th of February, 1562, Jean de Ribaut, a
zealous Protestant, sailed from Dieppe with two vessels and a picked
crew; many volunteers, including some gentlemen of condition, followed
his fortunes. He landed on the coast of Florida, near St. Mary's River,
where he established a settlement and built a fort. Two years afterward
Coligni sent out a re-enforcement, under the command of René de
Laudonnière; this was the only portion of the admiral's great scheme
ever carried into effect: when he fell, in the awful massacre of Saint
Bartholomew, his magnificent project was abandoned. (1568.) After six
years of fierce struggle with the Spaniards, the survivors of this
little colony returned to France.[97]


[Footnote 71: Hist. de la Nouvelle France, par le Père Charlevoix, de la
Compagnie de Jésus, vol. i., p. 11; Fastes Chronologiques, 1534.]

[Footnote 72: Prima Relatione de Jacques Cartier della Terra Nouva,
detta la Nouva Francia, in Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 435.]

[Footnote 73: "Se la terra fosse cosi buono; come vi sono buoni porti,
sarebbe un gran bene, ma ella non si debba chiamar Terra Nouva, anzi
sassi e grebani salvatichi, e proprij luoghi da fiere, per ciò che in
tutto l'isola di Tramontana--[translated by Hakluyt "the northern part
of the island"]--io non vidi tanta terra che se ne potesse coricar un
carro, e vi smontai in parecchi luoghi, e all' isola di Bianco Sabbione
non v'è altro che musco, e piccioli spini dispersi, secchi, e morti, e
in somma io penso che questa sia la terra che Iddio dette a Caino."--J.
Cartier, in Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 436.

The journal of the first two voyages of Cartier is preserved almost
entire in the "Histoire de la Nouvelle France," by L'Escarbot; there is
an Italian translation in the third volume of Ramusio. They are written
in the third person, and it does not appear that he was himself the

[Footnote 74: "Sono uomini d'assai bella vita e grandezza ma indomiti e
salvatichi: portano i capelli in cuna legati e stretti a guisa d'un
pugno di fieno rivolto, mettendone in mezzo un legnetto, o altra cosa in
vece di chiodo, e vi legano insieme certe penne d'uccelli."--J. Cartier,
in Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 436.]

[Footnote 75: De Laët., vol. i., p. 58.]

[Footnote 76: This was ingeniously represented to the natives as a
religious ceremony, and, as such, excited nothing but the "grandissima
ammirazione" of the natives present; it was, however, differently
understood by their chief. "Ma essendo noi ritornati allé nostra navi,
venne il Capitano lor vestito d'im pella vecchia d'orso negro in una
barca con tre suoi figliuoli, e ci fece un lungo sermone mostrandaci
detta croce e facendo il segno della croce con due dita poi ci mostrava
la terra tutta intorno di noi come s'avesse voluto dice che tutta era
sua, e che noi non dovevamo piantar detta croce senza sua licenza."--J.
Cartier, in Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 439.]

[Footnote 77: "Trovavamo un molto bello e gran golfo pieno d'isole e
buone entrate e passaggi, verso qual vento si possa fare."--J. Cartier,
in Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 441.]

[Footnote 78: "Carthier donna au golphe le nom de St. Laurent, ou plutôt
il le donna à une baye qui est entre l'isle d'Anticoste et la côte
septentrionale, d'où ce nom s'est étendu à tout le golphe dont cette
baye fait partie."--_Hist. de la Nouvelle France_, tom. i., p. 15.]

[Footnote 79: "Des sauvages l'appelloient Natiscotec, le nom d'Anticosti
paraît lui avoir été donné par les Anglais."--Charlevoix, tom. i., p.
16. This island is one hundred and twenty-five miles long, and in its
widest part thirty miles, dividing the River St. Lawrence into two
channels. Throughout its whole extent it has neither bay nor harbor
sufficiently safe to shelter ships. It is uncultivated, being generally
of an unprofitable soil, upon which any attempted improvements have met
with very unpromising results. Since the year 1809, establishments have
been formed on the island for the relief of shipwrecked persons; two men
reside there, at two different stations, all the year round, furnished
with provisions for the use of those who may have the misfortune to need
them. Boards are placed in different parts describing the distance and
direction to these friendly spots; instances of the most flagrant
inattention have, however, occurred, which were attended with the most
distressing and fatal consequences."--Bonchette, vol. i., p. 169.

"At present the whole island might be purchased for a few hundred
pounds. It belongs to some gentlemen in Quebec; and you might, for a
very small sum, become one of the greatest land-owners in the world, and
a Canadian _seigneur_ into the bargain."--Grey's _Canada_.]

[Footnote 80: This is the first discovery of the River St. Lawrence,
called by the natives the River Hochelaga, or the River of Canada.
Jacques Cartier accurately determined the breadth of its mouth ninety
miles across. Cape Rosier, a small distance to the north of the point of
Gaspé, is properly the place which marks the opening of the gigantic
river. "V'è tra le terre d'ostro e quelle di tramontana la distantia di
trenta leghe in circa, e più di dugento braccia di fondo. Ci dissero
anche i detti salvatichi e certificarono quivi essere il cammino e
principio del gran fiume di Hochelaga e strada di Canada."--J. Cartier,
in Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 442.

J. Cartier always afterward speaks of the St. Lawrence as the River of
Hochelaga, or Canada. Charlevoix says, "Parceque le fleuve qu'on
appelloit auparavant la Rivière de Canada se décharge dans le Golphe de
St. Laurent, il a insensiblement pris le nom de Fleuve de St. Laurent,
qu'il porte aujourd'hui (1720)."]

[Footnote 81: "Lorsque Jacques Carthier découvrit cette île, il la
trouva toute remplie de vignes, et la nomma l'Île de Bacchus. Ce
navigateur était Bréton, après lui sont venus des Normands qui ont
arraché les vignes et à Bacchus ont substituté Pomone et Cérès. En effet
elle produit de bon froment et d'excellent fruits."--_Journal
Historique_, lettre ii., p. 102.

Charlevoix also mentions that, when he visited the islands in 1720, the
inhabitants were famed for their skill in sorcery, and were supposed to
hold intercourse with the devil!

The Isle of Orleans was, in 1676, created an earldom, by the title of
St. Laurent, which, however, has long been extinct. The first Comte de
St. Laurent was of the name of Berthelot.--Charlevoix, vol. v., p. 99.]

[Footnote 82: "Il signor de Canada (chiamato Donnacona per nome, ma per
signore il chiamano Agouhanna)."--J. Cartier, in Ramusio, tom. iii., p.
442. Agouhanna signified chief or lord.

Here, says Jacques Cartier, begins the country of Canada. "Il settimo
giorno di detto mese la vigilia della Madonna, dopo udita la messa ci
partimmo dall' isola de' nocellari per andar all'insu di detta fiume, e
arrivamo a quattordici isole distanti dall' isola de Nocellari intorno
setto in otto leghe, e quivi è il principio della provincia, e terra di
Canada."--J. Cartier, in Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 442.]

[Footnote 83: The writer of these pages adds the testimony of an
eye-witness to the opinion of the ingenious author of the "Picture of
Quebec," as to the localities here described. The old writers, even
Charlevoix himself, have asserted that the "Port St. Croix was at the
entrance of the river now called Jacques Cartier, which flows into the
St. Lawrence about fifteen miles above Quebec." Charlevoix, indeed,
mentions that "Champlain prétend que cette rivière est celle de St.
Charles, mais," he adds, "il se trompe," &c. However, the localities are
still unchanged; though three centuries have since elapsed, the
description of Jacques Cartier is easily recognized at the present day,
and marks out the mouth of the little River St. Charles[84] as the first
winter station of the Europeans in Canada. The following are J.
Cartier's words: "Per cercar luogo e porto sicuro da metter le navé, e
andammo al contrario per detto fiume intorno di dieci leghe costezziando
detta isola (di Bacchus) e in capo di quella trovammo un gorgo d'acqua
bello e ameno ("the beautiful basin of Quebec," as it is called in the
"Picture of Quebec")--nel quel luogo e un picciol fiume e porto, dove
per il flusso è alta l'acqua intorno a tre braccia, ne parve questo
luogo comodo per metter le nostre navi, per il che quivi le mettemmo in
sicuro, e lo chiamammo Santa Croce, percio che nel detto giorno v' eramo
giunti.... Alla riva e lito di quell' isola di Bacchus verso ponente v'è
un goejo d'acque molto bello e dilettevole, e convenientemente da
mettere navilij, dove è uno stretto del detto fiume molto corrente e
profondo ma non e lungo più d'un terzo di lega intorno, per traverso del
quale vi è una terra tutta di colline di buona altezza ... quive è la
stanza e la terra di Donnacona, e chiamasi il luogo Stadacona ... sotto
la qual alta terra verso tramontana è il fiume e porto di Santa Croce,
nel qual luogo e porto siamo stati dalli 15 di Settembre fino alli 16 di
Maggio 1536, nel qual luogo le navi rimasero in secco." The "one place"
in the River St. Lawrence, "deep and swift running," means, of course,
that part directly opposite the Lower Town, and no doubt it appeared, by
comparison, "very narrow" to those who had hitherto seen the noble river
only in its grandest forms. The town of Stadacona stood on that part of
Quebec which is now covered by the suburbs of St. Roch, with part of
those of St. John, looking toward the St. Charles. The area, or ground
adjoining, is thus described by Cartier, as it appeared three centuries
ago: "terra Tanta buona, quanto sia possibile di vedere, e è molto
fertile, piena di bellissimi arbori della sorte di quelli di Francia,
come sarebbeno quercie, olmi, frassinè, najare, nassi, cedri, vigne,
specie bianchi, i quali producono il frutto cosi grosso come susinè
damaschini, e di molte altre specie d'arbori, sotto de quali vi nasce e
cresce cosi bel canapo come quel di Francia, e nondimeno vi nasce senza
semenza, e senza opera umana o lavoro alcuno."--Jacques Cartier, in
Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 443, 449, 450.

The exact spot in the River St. Charles where the French passed the
winter is supposed, on good authority, to have been the site of the old
bridge, called Dorchester Bridge, where there is a ford at low water,
close to the Marine Hospital. That it was on the east bank, not far from
the residence of Charles Smith, Esq., is evident from the river having
been frequently crossed by the natives coming from Stadacona to visit
the French.--_Picture of Quebec_, p. 43-46; 1834.]

[Footnote 84: It received this name, according to La Potherie, in
compliment to Charles des Boües, grand vicar of Pontoise, founder of the
first mission of Recollets in New France. The River St. Charles was
called Coubal Coubat by the natives, from its windings and
meanderings.--Smith's _Canada_, vol. i., p. 104.]

[Footnote 85: "Quebec en langue Algonquine signifie _retrécissement_.
Les Abenaquis dont la langue est une dialecte Algonquine, le nomment
Quelibec, qui veut dire _ce qui est ferme_, parceque de l'entrée de la
petite rivière de la Chaudière par où ces sauvages venaient à Quebec, le
port de Quebec ne paroit qu'une grande barge."--Charlevoix, vol. i., p.

"Trouvant un lieu le plus étroit de la rivière que les habitans du pays
nomment Québec;" "la pointe de Québec, ainsi appellée des
sauvages."--Champlain, vol. i., p. 115, 124.

Others give a Norman derivation for the word: it is said that Quebec was
so called after Caudebec, on the Seine.

La Potherie's words are: "On tient que les Normands qui étoient avec J.
Cartier à sa première découverte, apercevant en bout de l'isle
d'Orléans, un cap fort élevé, s'écrièrent 'Quel bec!' et qu' à la suite
du tems la nom de Quebec lui est reste. Je ne suis point garant de cette
étymologie." Mr. Hawkins terms this "a derivation entirely illusory and
improbable," and asserts that the word is of Norman origin. He gives an
engraving of a seal belonging to William de la Pole, earl of Suffolk,
dated in the 7th of Henry V., or A.D. 1420. The legend or motto is,
"Sigillum Willielmi de la Pole, Comitis Suffolckiæ, Domine de Hamburg et
de Quebec." Suffolk was impeached by the Commons of England in 1450, and
one of the charges brought against him was, his unbounded influence in
Normandy, where he lived and ruled like an independent prince; it is
not, therefore, improbable that he enjoyed the French title of Quebec in
addition to his English honors.

The Indian name Stadacona had perished before the time of Champlain,
owing, probably, to the migration of the principal tribe and the
succession of others. The inhabitants of Hochelaga, we are told by
Jacques Cartier, were the only people in the surrounding neighborhood
who were not migratory.]

[Footnote 86: "In mezzo di quelle campagne, è posta la terra d'Hochelaga
appresso e congiunta con una montagna coltivata tutta attorno e molto
fertile, sopra la qual si vede molto lontano. Noi la chiamammo il Monto
Regal.... Parecchi uomini e donne ci vennero a condur e menar sopra la
montagna, qui dinanzi detta, la qual chiamammo Monte Regal, distante da
detto luogo poco manco d'un miglio, sopra la quale essendo noi, vedemmo
e avemmo notitia di più di trenta leghe attorno di quella, e verso la
parte di tramontana si vede una continuazione di montagne, li quali
corrono avante e ponente, e altra tante verso il mezzo giorno, fra le
quali montagna è la terra, più bella che sia possibile a veder."--J.
Cartier, in Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 447, 448.

"Cartier donna le nom de Mont Royal à la montagne au pied de laquelle
étoit la bourgade de Hochelaga. Il découvrit de là une grande étendue de
pays dont la vue le charma, et avec raison, car il en est peu au monde
de plus beau et de meilleur."--Charlevoix, tom. i., p. 20.]

[Footnote 87: "This tree is supposed to have been the spruce fir, _Pinus
Canadensis_. It is called 'Ameda' by the natives. Spruce-beer is known
to be a powerful anti-scorbutic."--Champlain. part i., p. 124.

Charlevoix calls the tree _Epinette Blanche_.]

[Footnote 88: Any information given by the natives as to the existence
of mines was vague and unsatisfactory, "Poscia ci mostrarono con segni,
che passate dette tre cadute si poteva navigar per detto fiume il spazio
di tre lune: noi pensammo che quello sia il fiume che passa per il passe
di Saguenay, e senza che li facessimo dimanda presero la catena del
subiotto del capitano che era d'argento, e il manico del pugnale di uno
de nostre compagni marinari, qual era d'ottone giallo quanto l'oro, e ci
mostrarono che quello veniva di sopra di detto fiume ... Il capitan
mostro loro del rame rosso, qual chiamano _Caignetadze_ dimostrandoli
con segni voltandosi verso detto paese li dimandava se veniva da quelle
parti, e eglino cominciarono a crollar il capo, volendo dir no, ma ben
ne significarono che veniva da _Saguenay_.

"Più ci hanno detto e fatto intendere, che in quel paese di _Saguenay_
sono genti vestite di drappi come noi, ... e che hanno gran quantità
d'oro e rame rosso ... e che gli nomini e donne di quella terra sono
vestite di pelli come loro, noi li dimandammo se ci è oro e rame rosso,
ci risposero di si. Io penso che questo luogo sia verso la Florida per
quanto ho potuto intendere dalli loro segni e indicij."--J. Cartier, in
Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 448-450.]

[Footnote 89: The only valuable the natives seemed to have in their
possession was a substance called _esurgny_, white as snow, of which
they made beads and wore them about their necks. This they looked upon
as the most precious gift they could bestow on the white men. The mode
in which it was prepared is said by Cartier to be the following: When
any one was adjudged to death for a crime, or when their enemies are
taken in war, having first slain the person, they make long gashes over
the whole of the body, and sink it to the bottom of the river in a
certain place, where the esurgny abounds. After remaining ten or twelve
hours, the body is drawn up and the esurgny or _cornibotz_ is found in
the gashes. These necklaces of beads the French found had the power to
stop bleeding at the nose. It is supposed that in the above account the
French misunderstood the natives or were imposed upon by them; and there
is no doubt that the "valuable substance" described by Cartier was the
Indian wampum.]

[Footnote 90: See Appendix, No. XIV. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 91: The precise spot on which the upper fort of Jacques
Cartier was built, afterward enlarged by Roberval, has been fixed by an
ingenious gentleman at Quebec at the top of Cape Rouge Height, a short
distance from the handsome villa of Mr. Atkinson. A few months ago, Mr.
Atkinson's workmen, in leveling the lawn in front of the house, and
close to the point of Cape Rouge Height, found beneath the surface some
loose stones which had apparently been the foundation of some building
or fortification. Among these stones were found several iron balls of
different sizes, adapted to the caliber of the ship guns used at the
period of Jacques Cartier's and Roberval's visit. Upon the whole, the
evidence of the presence of the French at Cape Rouge may be considered
as conclusive. Nor is there any good reason to doubt that Roberval took
up his quarters in the part which Jacques Cartier had left.--_Picture of
Quebec_, p. 62-469.]

[Footnote 92: Jacques Cartier was born at St. Malo about 1500. The day
of his birth can not be discovered, nor the time and place of his death.
Most probably he finished his useful life at St. Malo; for we find,
under the date of the 29th of November, 1549, that the celebrated
navigator with his wife, Catharine des Granges, founded an obit in the
Cathedral of St. Malo, assigning the sum of four francs for that
purpose. The mortuary registers of St. Malo make no mention of his
death, nor is there any tradition on the subject.]

[Footnote 93: The name of America was first given to the New World in
1507. "L'opinion anciennement émise et encore très répandue que Vespuce,
dans l'exercice de son emploi de Piloto mayor, et chargé de corriger les
cartes hydrographiques de 1508 à 1512, ait profité de sa position pour
appeler de son nom le Nouveau Monde, n'a aucun fondement. La
dénomination d'Amérique a été proposée loin de Seville, en Lorraine, en
1507, une année avant la création de l'office d'un Piloto mayor de
Indias. Les Mappe Mondes qui portent le nom d'Amérique n'ont paru que 8
our 10 ans après la mort de Vespuce, et dans des pays sur lequels ni lui
ni ses parents n'exerçaient aucune influence. Il est probable que
Vespuce n'a jamais su quelle dangereuse gloire on lui préparoit à Saint
Dié, dans un petit endroit, situé au pied des Vosges, et dont
vraisembablement le nom même lui étoit inconnu. Jusqu' à l'époque de sa
mort, le mot Amérique, employé comme dénomination d'un continent ne
s'est trouve imprimé que dans deux seuls ouvrages, dans la Cosmographiæ
Introductio de Martin Waldseemüller, et dans le Globus Mundi (Argentor,
1509). On n'a jusqu'ici aucun rapport direct de Waldseemüller
imprimateur de Saint Dié, avec le navigateur Florentin."--Humboldt's
_Geogr. du Nouveau Continent_, vol. v., p. 206.]

[Footnote 94: Nomoesi-Sipu, _Fish River_, Moesisip by corruption. This
river is called Cucagna by Garcilasso.]

[Footnote 95: For the romantic details of Ferdinand de Soto's perilous
enterprise, see Vega Garcilasso de Florida del Ynca, b. i., ch. iii.,
iv.; Herrera, Dec. VI., b. vii., ch. ix.; Purchas, 4, 1532; "Purchas,
his Pilgrimage," otherwise called "Hackluytus Posthumus;" a voluminous
compilation by a chaplain of Archbishop Abbot's, designed to comprise
whatever had been related concerning the religion of all nations, from
the earliest times.--Miss Aikin's _Charles I._, vol. i., p. 39.]

[Footnote 96: "La colonie Française établie sous Charles IX. comprenoit
la partie méridionnale de la Caroline Angloise, la Nouvelle Georgie,
d'aujourd'hui (1740) San Matteo, appellé par Laudonnière Caroline en
l'honneur du roi Charles, St. Augustin, et tout ce que les Espagnols ont
sur cette côte jusqu'au Cap François, n'a jamais été appellée autrement
que la Floride Française, ou la Nouvelle France, ou la France
Occidentale."--Charlevoix, tom. vi., p. 383.]

[Footnote 97: See Appendix, Nos. XV., XVI. (see Vol II)]


Little or no effort was made to colonize any part of Canada for nearly
fifty years after the loss of Roberval; but the Huguenots of France did
not forget that hope of a refuge from religious persecution which their
great leader, Coligni, had excited in their breasts. Several of the
leaders of subsequent expeditions of trade and discovery to Canada and
Acadia were Calvinists, until 1627, when Champlain, zealous for the
Romish faith, procured a decree forbidding the free exercise of the
Reformed religion in French America.

Although the French seemed to have renounced all plan of settlement in
America by the evacuation of Florida, the fishermen of Normandy and
Brittany still plied their calling on the Great Bank and along the
stormy shores of Newfoundland, and up the Gulf and River of St.
Lawrence. By degrees they began to trade with the natives, and soon the
greater gains and easier life of this new pursuit transformed many of
these hardy sailors into merchants.

When, after fifty years of civil strife, the strong and wise sway of
Henry IV. restored rest to troubled France, the spirit of discovery
again arose. The Marquis de la Roche, a Breton gentleman, obtained from
the king, in 1598, a patent granting the same powers that Roberval had
possessed. He speedily armed a vessel, and sailed for Nova Scotia in the
same year, accompanied by a skillful Norman pilot named Chedotel. He
first reached Sable Island, where he left forty miserable wretches,
convicts drawn from the prisons of France, till he might discover some
favorable situation for the intended settlement, and make a survey of
the neighboring coasts. When La Roche ever reached the Continent of
America remains unknown; but he certainly returned to France, leaving
the unhappy prisoners upon Sable Island to a fate more dreadful than
even the dungeons or galleys of France could threaten. After seven years
of dire suffering, twelve of these unfortunates were found alive, an
expedition having been tardily sent to seek them by the king. When they
arrived in France, they became objects of great curiosity; in
consideration of such unheard-of suffering, their former crimes were
pardoned, a sum of money was given to each, and the valuable furs
collected during their dreary imprisonment, but fraudulently seized by
the captain of the ship in which they were brought home, were allowed to
their use. In the mean time, the Marquis de la Roche, who had so cruelly
abandoned these men to their fate, harassed by lawsuits, overwhelmed
with vexations, and ruined in fortune by the failure of his expedition,
died miserably of a broken heart.

The misfortunes and ruin of the Marquis de la Roche did not stifle the
spirit of commercial enterprise which the success of the fur trade had
excited. Private adventurers, unprotected by any especial privilege,
began to barter for the rich peltries of the Canadian hunters. (1600.) A
wealthy merchant of St. Malo, named Pontgravé, was the boldest and most
successful of these traders; he made several voyages to Tadoussac, at
the mouth of the Saguenay, bringing back each time a rich cargo of rare
and valuable furs. He saw that this commerce would open to him a field
of vast wealth, could he succeed in obtaining an exclusive privilege to
enjoy its advantages, and managed to induce Chauvin, a captain in the
navy, to apply to the king for powers such as De la Roche had possessed:
the application was successful, a patent was granted to Chauvin, and
Pontgravé admitted to partnership. (1602.) It was, however, in vain that
they attempted to establish a trading post at Tadoussac:[98] after
having made two voyages thither without realizing their sanguine
expectations of gain, Chauvin died while once more preparing to try his

At this time the great object of colonization was completely forgotten
in the eager pursuit of the fur trade, till De Chatte, the governor of
Dieppe, who succeeded to the privileges of Chauvin, founded a company of
merchants at Rouen, for the further development of the resources of
Canada. (1603.) An armament was fitted out under the command of the
experienced Pontgravé; he was commissioned by the king to make further
discoveries in the St. Lawrence, and to establish a settlement upon some
suitable position on the coast. Samuel de Champlain, a captain in the
navy, accepted a command in this expedition at the request of De
Chatte; he was a native of Saintonge, and had lately returned to France
from the West Indies, where he had gained a high name for boldness and
skill. Under the direction of this wise and energetic man the first
successful efforts were made to found a permanent settlement in the
magnificent province of Canada, and the stain of the errors and
disasters of more than seventy years was at length wiped away.

Pontgravé and Champlain sailed for the St. Lawrence in 1603. They
remained a short time at Tadoussac, where they left their ships; then,
trusting themselves to a small, open boat, with only five sailors, they
boldly pushed up the Great River to the sault St. Louis, where Jacques
Cartier had reached many years before. By this time Hochelaga, the
ancient Indian city, had, from some unknown cause, sunk into such
insignificance that the adventurers did not even notice it, nor deem it
worthy of a visit; but they anchored for a time under the shade of the
magnificent headland of Quebec. On the return of the expedition to
France, Champlain found, to his deep regret, that De Chatte, the worthy
and powerful patron of the undertaking, had died during his absence.
Pierre du Guast, sieur de Monts, had succeeded to the powers and
privileges of the deceased, with even a more extensive commission.

De Monts was a Calvinist, and had obtained from the king the freedom of
religious faith for himself and his followers in America, but under the
engagement that the Roman Catholic worship should be established among
the natives. Even his opponents admitted the honesty and patriotism of
his character,[99] and bore witness to his courage and ability; he was,
nevertheless, unsuccessful; many of those under his command failed in
their duty, and the jealousy excited by his exclusive privileges and
obnoxious doctrines[100] involved him in ruinous embarrassments.

The trading company established by De Chatte was continued and increased
by his successor. With this additional aid De Monts was enabled to fit
out a more complete armament than had ever hitherto been engaged in
Canadian commerce. He sailed from Havre on the 7th of March, 1604, with
four vessels. Of these, two under his immediate command were destined
for Acadia. Champlain, Poutrincourt, and many other volunteers, embarked
their fortunes with him, purposing to cast their future lot in the New
World. A third vessel was dispatched under Pontgravé to the Strait of
Canso, to protect the exclusive trading privileges of the company. The
fourth steered for Tadoussac, to barter for the rich furs brought by the
Indian hunters from the dreary wilds of the Saguenay.

On the 6th of May De Monts reached a harbor on the coast of Acadia,
where he seized and confiscated an English vessel, in vindication of his
exclusive privileges. Thence he sailed to the Island of St. Croix, where
he landed his people, and established himself for the winter. In the
spring of 1605 he hastened to leave this settlement, where the want of
wood and fresh water, and the terrible ravages of the scurvy, had
disheartened and diminished the number of his followers. In the mean
time Champlain had discovered and named Port Royal, now Annapolis, a
situation which presented many natural advantages. De Monts removed the
establishment thither, and erected a fort, appointing Pontgravé to its
command. Soon afterward he bestowed Port Royal and a large extent of the
neighboring country upon De Poutrincourt, and the grant was ultimately
confirmed by letters patent from the king. This was the first concession
of land made in North America since its discovery.

When De Monts returned to France in 1605, he found that enemies had been
busily and successfully at work in destroying his influence at court.
Complaints of the injustice of his exclusive privileges poured in from
all the ports in the kingdom. It was urged that he had interfered with
and thwarted the fisheries, under the pretense of securing the sole
right of trading with the Indian hunters. These statements were
hearkened to by the king, and all the Sieur's privileges were revoked.
De Monts bore up bravely against this disaster. He entered into a new
engagement with De Poutrincourt, who had followed him to France, and
dispatched a vessel from Rochelle on the 13th of May to succor the
colony in Acadia. The voyage was unusually protracted, and the settlers
at Port Royal, at length reduced to great extremities, feared that they
had been abandoned to their fate. The wise and energetic Pontgravé did
all that man could do to reassure them; but, finally, their supplies
being completely exhausted, he was constrained to yield to the general
wish, and embark his people for France. He had scarcely sailed, however,
when he heard of the arrival of Poutrincourt and the long-desired
supplies. He then immediately returned to Port Royal, where he found his
chief already landed. Under able and judicious management,[101] the
colony increased and prospered until 1614, when it was attacked and
broken up by Sir Samuel Argall with a Virginian force.[102]

The enemies of De Monts did not relax in their efforts till he was
deprived of his high commission. A very insufficient indemnity was
granted for the great expenses he had incurred. Still he was not
disheartened: in the following year, 1607, he obtained a renewal of his
privileges for one year, on condition that he should plant a colony upon
the banks of the St. Lawrence. The trading company did not lose
confidence in their principal, although his courtly influence had been
destroyed; but their object was confined to the prosecution of the
lucrative commerce in furs, for which reason they ceased to interest
themselves in Acadia, and turned their thoughts to the Great River of
Canada, where they hoped to find a better field for their undertaking.
They equipped two ships at Honfleur, under the command of Champlain and
Pontgravé, to establish the fur trade at Tadoussac. De Monts remained in
France, vainly endeavoring to obtain an extension of his patent. Despite
his disappointments, he fitted out some vessels in the spring of 1608,
with the assistance of the company, and dispatched them to the River
St. Lawrence on the 13th of April, under the same command as before.

Champlain reached Tadoussac on the 3d of June; his views were far more
extended than those of a mere merchant; even honest fame for himself,
and increase of glory and power for his country, were, in his eyes,
objects subordinate to the extension of the Catholic faith. After a
brief stay, he ascended the Great River, examining the shore with minute
care, to seek the most fitting place where the first foundation of
French empire might be laid. On the 3d of July he reached QUEBEC, where,
nearly three quarters of a century before, Jacques Cartier had passed
the winter. This magnificent position was at once chosen by Champlain as
the site of the future capital of Canada: centuries of experience have
proved the wisdom of the selection; admirably situated for purposes of
war or commerce, and completely commanding the navigation of the Great
River, it stands the center of a scene of beauty that can nowhere be

On the bold headland overlooking the waters of the basin, he commenced
his work by felling the trees, and rooting up the wild vines and tangled
underwood from the virgin soil. Some rude huts were speedily erected for
shelter; spots around them were cultivated to test the fertility of the
land: this labor was repaid by abundant production. The first permanent
work undertaken in the new settlement was the erection of a solid
building as a magazine for their provisions. A temporary barrack on the
highest point of the position, for the officers and men, was
subsequently constructed. These preparations occupied the remainder of
the summer. The first snow fell on the 18th of November, but only
remained on the ground for two days: in December it again returned, and
the face of nature was covered till the end of April, 1609. From the
time of Jacques Cartier to the establishment of Champlain, and even to
the present day, there has been no very decided amelioration of the
severity of the climate; indeed, some of the earliest records notice
seasons milder than many of modern days.

The town of Stadacona, like its prouder neighbor of Hochelaga, seems to
have dwindled into insignificance since the time when it had been an
object of such interest and suspicion to Jacques Cartier. Some Indians
still lived in huts around Quebec, but in a state of poverty and
destitution, very different from the condition of their ancestors.
During the winter of 1608, they suffered dire extremities of famine;
several came over from the southern shores of the river, miserably
reduced by starvation, and scarcely able to drag along their feeble
limbs, to seek aid from the strangers. Champlain relieved their
necessities and treated them with politic kindness. The French suffered
severely from the scurvy during the first winter of their residence.

On the 18th of April, 1609, Champlain, accompanied by two Frenchmen,
ascended the Great River with a war party of Canadian Indians. After a
time, turning southward up a tributary stream, he came to the shores of
a large and beautiful lake, abounding with fish; the shores and
neighboring forests sheltered, in their undisturbed solitude, countless
deer and other animals of the chase. To this splendid sheet of water he
gave his own name, which it still bears. To the south and west rose huge
snow-capped mountains, and in the fertile valleys below dwelt numbers of
the fierce and hostile Iroquois. Champlain and his savage allies pushed
on to the furthest extremity of the lake, descended a rapid, and entered
another smaller sheet of water, afterward named St. Sacrement. On the
shore they encountered two hundred of the Iroquois warriors; a battle
ensued; the skill and the astonishing weapons of the white men soon gave
their Canadian allies a complete victory. Many prisoners were taken,
and, in spite of Champlain's remonstrances, put to death with horrible
and protracted tortures. The brave Frenchman returned to Quebec, and
sailed for Europe in September, leaving Captain Pierre Chauvin, an
experienced officer, in charge of the infant settlement. Henry IV.
received Champlain with favor, and called him to an interview at
Fontainebleau:[103] the king listened attentively to the report of the
new colony, expressing great satisfaction at its successful foundation
and favorable promise. But the energetic De Monts, to whom so much of
this success was due, could find no courtly aid: the renewal of his
privilege was refused, and its duration had already expired. By the
assistance of the Merchant Company, he fitted out two vessels in the
spring of 1610, under the tried command of Champlain and Pontgravé: the
first was destined for Quebec, with some artisans, settlers, and
necessary supplies for the colony; the second was commissioned to carry
on the fur trade at Tadoussac. Champlain sailed from Honfleur on the 8th
of April, and reached the mouth of the Saguenay in eighteen days, a
passage which even all the modern improvements in navigation have rarely
enabled any one to surpass in rapidity. He soon hastened on to Quebec,
where, to his great joy, he found the colonists contented and
prosperous; the virgin soil had abundantly repaid the labors of
cultivation, and the natives had in no wise molested their dangerous
visitors. He joined the neighboring tribes of Algonquin and Montagnez
Indians, during the summer, in an expedition against the Iroquois.
Having penetrated the woody country beyond Sorel for some distance, they
came upon a place where their enemies were intrenched; this they took,
after a bloody resistance. Champlain and another Frenchman were slightly
wounded in the encounter.

In 1612 Champlain found it necessary to revisit France; some powerful
patron was wanted to forward the interests of the colony, and to provide
the supplies and resources required for its extension. The Count de
Soissons readily entered into his views, and delegated to him the
authority of viceroy, which had been conferred upon the count.[104]
Soissons died soon after, and the Prince of Condé became his successor.
Champlain was wisely continued in the command he had so long and ably
held, but was delayed in France for some time by difficulties on the
subject of commerce with the merchants of St. Malo.

Champlain sailed again from St. Malo on the 6th of March, 1613, in a
vessel commanded by Pontgravé, and anchored before Quebec on the 7th of
May. He found the state of affairs at the settlement so satisfactory
that his continued presence was unnecessary; he therefore proceeded at
once to Montreal, and, after a short stay at that island, explored for
some distance the course of the Ottawa, which there pours its vast flood
into the main stream of the St. Lawrence. The white men were filled with
wonder and admiration at the magnitude of this great tributary, the
richness and beauty of its shores, the broad lakes and deep rapids, and
the eternal forests, clothing mountain, plain, and valley for countless
leagues around. As they proceeded they found no diminution in the volume
of water; and when they inquired of the wandering Indian for its source,
he pointed to the northwest, and indicated that it lay in the unknown
solitudes of ice and snow, to which his people had never reached. After
this expedition Champlain returned with his companion Pontgravé to St.
Malo, where they arrived in the end of August.

Having engaged some wealthy merchants of St. Malo, Rouen, and Rochelle
in an association for the support of the colony, through the assistance
of the Prince of Condé, viceroy of New France, he obtained letters
patent of incorporation for the company (1614). The temporal welfare of
the settlement being thus placed upon a secure basis, Champlain, who was
a zealous Catholic, next devoted himself to obtain spiritual aid. By his
entreaties four Recollets were prevailed upon to undertake the mission.
These were the first[105] ministers of religion settled in Canada. They
reached Quebec in the beginning of April, 1615, accompanied by
Champlain, who, however, at once proceeded to Montreal.

On arriving at this island, he found the Huron and other allied tribes
again preparing for an expedition against the Iroquois. With a view of
gaining the friendship of the savages, and of acquiring a knowledge of
the country, he injudiciously offered himself to join a quarrel in which
he was in no wise concerned. The father Joseph Le Caron accompanied him,
in the view of preparing the way for religious instruction, by making
himself acquainted with the habits and language of the Indians.
Champlain was appointed chief by the allies, but his savage followers
rendered slight obedience to this authority. The expedition proved very
disastrous: the Iroquois were strongly intrenched, and protected by a
quantity of felled trees; their resistance proved successful; Champlain
was wounded, and the allies were forced to retreat with shame and with
heavy loss.

The respect of the Indians for the French was much diminished by this
untoward failure; they refused to furnish Champlain with a promised
guide to conduct him to Quebec, and he was obliged to pass the winter
among them as an unwilling guest. He, however, made the best use of his
time; he visited many of the principal Huron and Algonquin towns, even
those as distant as Lake Nipissing, and succeeded in reconciling several
neighboring nations. At the opening of the navigation, he gained over
some of the Indians to his cause, and, finding that another expedition
against the Iroquois was in preparation, embarked secretly and arrived
at Quebec on the 11th of July, 1616, when he found that he and the
father Joseph were supposed to have been dead long since. They both
sailed for France soon after their return from among the Hurons.

In the following year, a signal service was rendered to the colony by a
worthy priest named Duplessys: he had been engaged for some time at
Three Rivers in the instruction of the savages, and had happily so far
gained their esteem, that some of his pupils informed him of a
conspiracy among all the neighboring Indian tribes for the utter
destruction of the French; eight hundred chiefs and warriors had
assembled to arrange the plan of action. Duplessys contrived, with
consummate ability, to gain over some of the principal Indians to make
advances toward a reconciliation with the white men, and, by degrees,
succeeded in arranging a treaty, and in causing two chiefs to be given
up as hostages for its observance.

For several years Champlain was constantly obliged to visit France for
the purpose of urging on the tardily provided aids for the colony. The
court would not interest itself in the affairs of New France since a
company had undertaken their conduct, and the merchants, always limited
in their views to mere commercial objects, cared but little for the fate
of the settlers so long as their warehouses were stored with the
valuable furs brought by the Indian hunters. These difficulties would
doubtless have smothered the infant nation in its cradle, had it not
been for the untiring zeal and constancy of its great founder. At every
step he met with new trials from the indifference, caprice, or
contradiction of his associates, but, with his eye steadily fixed upon
the future, he devoted his fortune and the energies of his life to the
cause, and rose superior to every obstacle.

In 1620, the Prince of Condé sold the vice-royalty of New France to his
brother-in-law, the Marshal de Montmorenci, for eleven thousand crowns.
The marshal wisely continued Champlain as lieutenant governor, and
intrusted the management of colonial affairs in France to M. Dolu, a
gentleman of known zeal and probity. Champlain being hopeful that these
changes would favorably affect Canada, resolved now to establish his
family permanently in that country. Taking them with him, he sailed from
France in the above-named year, and arrived at Quebec in the end of May.
In passing by Tadoussac, he found that some adventurers of Rochelle had
opened a trade with the savages, in violation of the company's
privileges, and had given the fatal example of furnishing the hunters
with fire-arms in exchange for their peltries.

A great danger menaced the colony in the year 1621. The Iroquois sent
three large parties of warriors to attack the French settlements. This
savage tribe feared that if the white men obtained a footing in the
country, their alliance with the Hurons and Algonquins, of which the
effects had already been felt, might render them too powerful. The first
division marched upon Sault St. Louis, where a few Frenchmen were
established. Happily, there was warning of their approach; the
defenders, aided by some Indian allies, repulsed them with much loss,
and took several prisoners. The Iroquois had, however, seized Father
Guillaume Poulain, one of the Recollets, in their retreat; they tied him
to a stake, and were about to burn him alive, when they were persuaded
to exchange the good priest for one of their own chiefs, who had fallen
into the hands of the French. Another party of these fierce marauders
dropped down the river to Quebec in a fleet of thirty canoes, and
suddenly invested the Convent of the Recollets, where a small fort had
been erected; they did not venture to attack this little stronghold, but
fell upon some Huron villages near at hand, and massacred the helpless
inhabitants with frightful cruelty; they then retreated as suddenly as
they had come. Alarmed by this ferocious attack, which weakness and the
want of sufficient supplies prevented him from avenging, Champlain sent
Father Georges le Brebeuf as an agent, to represent to the king the
deplorable condition of the colony, from the criminal neglect of the
company. The appeal was successful; the company was suppressed, and the
exclusive privilege transferred to Guillaume and Emeric de Caen, uncle
and nephew.

The king himself wrote to his worthy subject Champlain, expressing high
approval of his eminent services, and exhorting him to continue in the
same career. This high commendation served much to strengthen his hands
in the exercise of his difficult authority. He was embarrassed by
constant disputes between the servants of the suppressed company, and
those who acted for the De Caens; religious differences also served to
embitter these dissensions, as the new authorities were zealous

This year Champlain discovered that his ancient allies, the Hurons,
purposed to detach themselves from his friendship, and unite with the
Iroquois for his destruction. To avert this danger, he sent among them
Father Joseph la Caron and two other priests, who appear to have
succeeded in their mission of reconciliation. The year after, he erected
a stone fort[108] at Quebec for the defense of the settlement, which
then only numbered fifty souls of all ages and sexes. As soon as the
defenses were finished, Champlain departed for France with his family,
to press for aid from the government for the distressed colony.

On his arrival, he found that Henri de Levi, duke de Ventadour, had
purchased the vice-royalty of New France from the Marshal de
Montmorenci, his uncle, with the view of promoting the spiritual welfare
of Canada, and the general conversion of the heathen Indians to the
Christian faith. He had himself long retired from the strife and
troubles of the world, and entered into holy orders. Being altogether
under the influence of the Jesuits, he considered them as the means
given by heaven for the accomplishment of his views. The pious and
exemplary Father Lallemant, with four other priests and laymen of the
Order of Jesus, undertook the mission, and sailed for Canada in 1625.
They were received without jealousy by their predecessors of the
Recollets, and admitted under their roof on their first arrival.[109]
The following year three other Jesuit fathers reached Quebec in a little
vessel provided by themselves; many artisans accompanied them. By the
aid of this re-enforcement, the new settlement soon assumed the
appearance of a town.

The Huguenot De Caens used their powerful influence to foment the
religious disputes now raging in the infant settlement;[110] they were
also far more interested in the profitable pursuit of the fur trade than
in promoting the progress of colonization; for these reasons, the
Cardinal de Richelieu judged that their rule was injurious to the
prosperity of the country; he revoked their privileges, and caused the
formation of a numerous company of wealthy and upright men; to this he
transferred the charge of the colony. This body was chartered under the
name of "The Company of One Hundred Associates:"[111] their capital was
100,000 crowns; their privileges as follows: To be proprietors of
Canada; to govern in peace and war; to enjoy the whole trade for
fifteen years (except the cod and whale fishery), and the fur trade in
perpetuity; untaxed imports and exports. The king gave them two ships of
300 tons burden each, and raised twelve of the principal members to the
rank of nobility. The company, on their part, undertook to introduce 200
or 300 settlers during the year 1628, and 16,000 more before 1643,
providing them with all necessaries for three years, and settling them
afterward on a sufficient extent of cleared land for their future
support. The articles of this agreement were signed by the Cardinal de
Richelieu on the 19th of April, 1627, and subsequently approved by the

At this time the Indians were a constant terror to the settlers in
Canada: several Frenchmen had been assassinated by the ruthless savages,
and their countrymen were too feeble in numbers to demand the punishment
of the murderers. Conscious of their strength, the natives became daily
more insolent; no white man could venture beyond the settlement without
incurring great danger. Building languished, and much of the cleared
land remained uncultivated. Such was the disastrous state of the colony.

The commencement of the company's government was marked by heavy
misfortune. The first vessels sent by them to America fell into the
hands of the English, at the sudden breaking out of hostilities. In
1628, Sir David Kertk, a French Calvinist refugee in the British
service, reached Tadoussac with a squadron, burned the fur houses of the
free traders, and did other damage; thence he sent to Quebec, summoning
Champlain to surrender. The brave governor consulted with Pontgravé and
the inhabitants; they came to the resolution of attempting a defense,
although reduced to great extremities, and sent Kertk such a spirited
answer that he, ignorant of their weakness, did not advance upon the
town. He, however, captured a convoy under the charge of De Roquemont,
with several families on board, and a large supply of provisions for the
settlement. This expedition against Canada was said to have been planned
and instigated by De Caen, from a spirit of vengeance against those who
had succeeded to his lost privileges.

In July, 1629, Lewis and Thomas, brothers of Sir David Kertk, appeared
with an armament before Quebec. As soon as the fleet had anchored, a
white flag with a summons to capitulate was sent ashore. This time the
assailants were well informed of the defenders' distress, but offered
generous terms if Champlain would at once surrender the fort. He, having
no means of resistance, was fain to submit. The English took possession
the following day, and treated the inhabitants with such good faith and
humanity, that none of them left the country. Lewis Kertk remained in
command at Quebec; Champlain proceeded with Thomas to Tadoussac, where
they met the admiral, Sir David, with the remainder of the fleet. In
September they sailed for England, and Champlain was sent on to France,
according to treaty.[112]

When the French received the news of the loss of Canada, opinion was
much divided as to the wisdom of seeking to regain the captured
settlement.[113] Some thought its possession of little value in
proportion to the expense it caused, while others deemed that the fur
trade and fisheries were of great importance to the commerce of France,
as well as a useful nursery for experienced seamen. Champlain strongly
urged the government not to give up a country where they had already
overcome the principal difficulties of settlement, and where, through
their means, the light of religion was dawning upon the darkness of
heathen ignorance. His solicitations were successful, and Canada was
restored to France at the same time with Acadia and Cape Breton, by the
treaty of St. Germain-en-Laye[114] (1632). At this period the fort of
Quebec, surrounded by a score of hastily-built dwellings and barracks,
some poor huts on the island of Montreal, the like at Three Rivers and
Tadoussac, and a few fishermen's log-houses elsewhere on the banks of
the St. Lawrence, were the only fruits of the discoveries of Verazzano,
Jacques Cartier, Roberval, and Champlain, the great outlay of La Roche
and De Monts, and the toils and sufferings of their followers, for
nearly a century.[115]

By the treaty of St. Germain-en-Laye the company were restored to all
their rights and privileges, and obtained compensation for the losses
they had sustained, but it was some time before the English could be
effectually excluded from the trade which they had established with the
Indians during their brief possession of the country. In 1633 Champlain
was reappointed governor of New France, and on his departure for the
colony took with him many respectable settlers: several Protestants were
anxious to join him; this, however, was not permitted. Two Jesuits,
Fathers de Brebeuf and Enemond Masse, accompanied the governor: they
purposed to devote themselves to the conversion of the Indians to
Christianity, and to the education of the youth of the colony. The
Recollets had made but little progress in proselytism; as yet, very few
of the natives had been baptized, nor were the Jesuits at first[116]
much more successful: these persevering men were, however, not to be
disheartened by difficulties, and they were supported by the hope that
when they became better acquainted with the language and manners of
their pupils, their instructions would yield a richer harvest.[117]

As New France advanced in population and prosperity, the sentiments of
religion became strengthened among the settlers. On the first arrival of
the Jesuits, Rénè Rohault, the eldest son of the Marquis de Gamache, and
himself one of the order, adopted the idea of founding a college at
Quebec for the education of youth and the conversion of the Indians, and
offered 6000 crowns of gold as a donation to forward the object. The
capture of the settlement by the English had, for a time, interrupted
the execution of this plan; but Rohault at length succeeded in laying
the foundation of the building in December, 1635, to the great joy of
the French colonists.

In the same month, to the deep regret of all good men, death deprived
his country of the brave, high-minded, and wise Champlain. He was buried
in the city of which he was the founder, where, to this day, he is
fondly and gratefully remembered among the just and good. Gifted with
high ability, upright, active, and chivalrous, he was, at the same time,
eminent for his Christian zeal and humble piety. "The salvation of one
soul," he often said, "is of more value than the conquest of an empire."
To him belongs the glory of planting Christianity and civilization among
the snows of those northern forests; during his life, indeed, a feeble
germ, but, sheltered by his vigorous arm--nursed by his tender care--the
root struck deep. Little more than two centuries have passed since the
faithful servant went to rest upon the field of his noble toils. And now
a million and a half of Christian people dwell in peace and plenty upon
that magnificent territory, which his zeal and wisdom first redeemed
from the desolation of the wilderness.


[Footnote 98: "Parceque les relations et les voyageurs parloient
beaucoup de Tadoussac, les Géographes ont supposé que e'était une ville,
mais il n'y a jamais eu qu'une maison Française, et quelques cabannes de
sauvages, qui y venoient au tems de la traité, et qui emportoient
ensuite leurs cabannes; comme on fait les loges d'une foire. Il est vrai
que ce port a été lontems l'abord de toutes les nations sauvages du
nord et de l'est; que les François s'y rendoient des que la navigation
étoit libre; soil de France, soil du Canada; que les missionnaires
profitoient de l'occasion, et y venoient négocier pour le ciel.... Au
reste Tadoussac est un bon port, et on m'a assuré que vingt cinq
vaisseaux de guerre y pouvoient être à l'abri de tous les vents, que
l'ancrage y est sur, et que l'entrée en est facile."--Charlevoix, tom.
v., p. 96, 1721.

"Tadoussac, one hundred and forty miles below Quebec, is a post
belonging to the Hudson Bay Company, and is the residence of one of its
partners and an agent. They alone are allowed to trade with the Indians
in the interior. At Tadoussac is a Roman Catholic chapel, a store and
warehouse, and some eight or ten dwellings. Here is erected a
flag-staff, surrounded by several pieces of cannon, on an eminence
elevated about fifty feet, and overlooking the inner warehouse, where is
a sufficient depth of water to float the largest vessels. This place was
early settled by the French, who are said to have here erected the first
dwelling built of stone and mortar in Canada, and the remains of it are
still to be seen. The view is exceedingly picturesque from this point.
The southern shore of the St. Lawrence may be traced, even with the
naked eye, for many a league; the undulating line of snow-white cottages
stretching far away to the east and west; while the scene is rendered
gay and animated by the frequent passage of the merchant vessel plowing
its way toward the port of Quebec, or hurrying upon the descending tide
to the Gulf; while, from the summit of the hill upon which Tadoussac
stands, the sublime and impressive scenery of the Saguenay rises to
view."--_Picturesque Tourist_, p. 267 (New York, 1844).]

[Footnote 99: "The colony that was sent to Canada this year was among
the number of those things that had not my approbation; there was no
kind of riches to be expected from all those countries of the New World
which are beyond the fortieth degree of latitude. His majesty gave the
conduct of this expedition to the Sieur de Monts."--_Memoirs of Sully_,
b. xvi., p. 241, English translation.]

[Footnote 100: The pious Romanist, Champlain, thus details the
inconveniences caused by the different creeds of the Frenchmen composing
the expedition of De Monts: "Il se trouva quelque chose à redire en
cette entreprise, qui est en ce que deux religions contraires ne font
jamais un grand fruit pour la gloire de Dieu parmi les infidèles que
l'on veut convertir. J'ai vu le ministre et notre curé s'entre battre à
coups de poing, sur le différend de la religion. Je ne sçais pas qui
étoit le plus vaillant et qui donnoit le meilleur coup, mas je sçais
très bien que le ministre se plaignoit quelquefois au Sieur de Monts
d'avoir été battue, et vuidoit en cette façon les points de
controversie. Je vous laisse à penser si cela étoit beau à voir; les
sauvages étoient tantôt d'une partie, tantôt d'une autre, et les
François mêlés selon leurs diverses croyances, disoit pis que pendre de
l'une et de l'autre religion, quoique le Sieur de Monts y apportât la
paix le plus qu'il pouvoit."--_Voyages de la Nouvelle France
Occidentale, dite Canada, faits par le Sieur de Champlain à Paris_,

[Footnote 101: De Poutrincourt had been accompanied, in his last voyage
from France, by Marc Lescarbot, well known as one of the best historians
of the early French colonists. His memoirs and himself are thus
described by Charlevoix: "Un avocat de Paris, nommé Marc L'Escarbot,
homme d'esprit et fort attaché à M. de Poutrincourt, avoit eu la
curiosité de voir le Nouveau Monde. Il animoit les uns, il piequoit les
autres d'honneur, il se faisoit aimer de tous, et ne s'épargnoit
lui-même en rien. Il inventoit tous les jours quelque chose de nouveau
pour l'utilité publique, et jamais on ne comprit mieux de quelle
ressource peut être dans un nouvel établissement, un esprit cultivé par
l'étude.... C'est à cet avocat, que nous sommes redevable des meilleurs
mémoires que nous ayons de ce qui s'est passé sous ses yeux. On y voit
un auteur exact, judicieux, et un homme, qui eut été aussi capable
d'établir une colonie que d'en écrire une histoire." (Charlevoix, vol.
i., p. 185.) The title of L'Escarbot's work is "Histoire de la Nouvelle
France, par Marc L'Escarbot, Avocat en Parlement, témoin oculaire d'une
partie des choses y récitées: à Paris, 1609."]

[Footnote 102: "Argall se fondait sur une concession de Jacques I., qui
avait permis à ses sujets de s'etablir jusqu'au quarante cinq degrés, et
il crut pouvoir profiter de la foiblesse des Français pour les traitre
en usurpateurs.... Si Poutrincourt avoit été dans son fort avec trente
hommes bien armés, Argall n'auroit pas même eu l'assurance de l'attaquer
... en deux heures de tems le fen consuma tout ce que les Français
possedoient dans une colonie où l'on avait déjà depensé plus de cent
mille écus.... Celui qui y perdit davantage, fut M. de Poutrincourt qui,
depuis ce tems là ne songea plus a l'Amérique. Il rentra dans le
service, où il s'était déjà par plusieurs belles actions et mourut au
lit d'honneur."--Jean de Laët.

In 1621, James I. conferred Acadia upon Sir William Alexander, who gave
it the name of Nova Scotia. At the treaty of St. Germain-en-Laye, in
1632, it was restored to the French; again taken by the English, it was
again restored to France by the treaty of Breda, in 1667. In 1710, when
Acadia was taken by General Nicholson, the English perceived its
importance for their commerce. They obtained its formal and final
cession at the treaty of Utrecht, 1713.]

[Footnote 103: "It was at this time that the name of New France was
first given to Canada."--Charlevoix. tom. i., p. 232.]

[Footnote 104: Champlain, part i., p. 231; Charlevoix, vol. i., p. 236.]

[Footnote 105: Seven or eight years before the arrival of the PP.
Recollets at Quebec, Roman Catholic missionaries had found their way to
Nova Scotia. They were Jesuits. It was remarkable that Henry IV., whose
life had been twice attempted by the Jesuits,[106] should have earnestly
urged their establishment in America. When Port Royal was ceded to
Poutrincourt by De Monts, the king intimated to him that it was time to
think of the conversion of the savages, and that it was _his desire_
that the Jesuits should be employed in this work. Charlevoix
acknowledges that De Poutrincourt was "un fort honnête homme, et
sincèrement attaché à la religion Catholique"--nevertheless, his
prejudices against Jesuits were so strong, that "il étoit bien résolu de
ne les point mene au Port Royal." On various pretexts he evaded obeying
the royal commands, and when, the year after, the Jesuits were sent out
to him, at the expense of Madame de Gruercheville, and by the orders of
the queen's mother, he rendered their stay at Port Royal as
uncomfortable as was consistent with his noble and generous character,
vigilantly guarding against their acquiring any dangerous influence. His
former prejudices could not have been lessened by the assassination of
Henry IV.[107] The two Jesuits selected by P. Cotton, Henry IV.'s
confessor, for missionary labors in Acadia, were P. Pierre Biast and P.
Enemond Masse. They were taken prisoners at the time of Argall's descent
on Acadia, 1614, and conveyed to England.--Charlevoix, tom. i., p. 189,

[Footnote 106: By Barrière in 1593; by Jean Châtel in 1594. He finally
perished by the hand of Ravaillac, in 1610. See Sully's Memoirs, b. vi.,
vii.; Cayet, Chron. Noven., b.v.; Père de Chalons, tom. iii., p. 245,
quoted by Sully.]

[Footnote 107: Henri s' était montré bienveillant pour les Jésuites,
encore que les parlemens et tous ceux qui tenoient, á la magistrature
ressentoient plus de prévention contre ces religieux que les Hugonots
eux-mêmes.... Henri IV. fit abattre la pyramide qui avait été élevée en
mémoire de l' attentat de Jean Châtel contre lui, parce que l'
inscription qu' elle portait inculpait les Jésuites d'avoir excité à cet
assassinat.--Sismondi: _Histoire des Français_. See De Thou, tom. ix.,
p. 696, 704; tom. x., p. 26 à 30.]

[Footnote 108: When Champlain first laid the foundations of the fort in
1623, to which he gave the name of St. Louis, it is evident that he was
actuated by views, not of a political, but a commercial character. When
Montmagny rebuilt the fort in 1635, it covered about four acres of
ground, and formed nearly a parallelogram. Of these works only a few
vestiges remain, except the eastern wall, which is kept in solid

[Footnote 109: Charlevoix, tom. i., p. 247.]

[Footnote 110: "Ce fut Guillaume de Caën qui les conduisit (les
Jésuites) à Quebec. Il avoit donné sa parole au Duc de Ventadour qu'il
ne laisseroit les Jésuites manquer du rien; cependant, des qu'ils furent
débarqués, il leur déclara que, si les PP. Recollets ne vouloient pas
les recevoir et les loger chez eux, ils n'avoient point d'autre parti à
prendre que retourner en France. Ils s'aperçurent même bientôt qu'on
avoit travaillé a prévénir contre eux les habitans de Quebec, en leur
mettant entre les mains les écrits les plus injurieux, que les
Calvinistes de France avoient publiés contre leur compagnie. Mais leur
présence eut bientôt effacé tous ces préjugés."--Charlevoix, tom. i., p.

[Footnote 111: Charlevoix highly extols this brilliant conception of the
Cardinal de Richelieu, "et ne craint point d'avancer que la Nouvelle
France seroit aujourd'hui la plus puissante colonie de l'Amérique, si
l'execution avoit répondue à la beauté du projet, et si les membres de
ce grand corps eussent profité des dispositions favorables du souverain
et de son ministre à leur égard."--Charlevoix, tom. i., p. 250;
_Mémoires des Commissaires_, vol. i., p. 346.]

[Footnote 112: Champlain's proposals of capitulation (Smith's Canada,
vol. i., p. 22) sufficiently prove that, down to 1629, France had
scarcely any permanent footing in the country. By stipulating for the
removal of "all the French" in Quebec, Champlain seems to consider that
the whole province was virtually lost to France, and "the single
vessel," which was to furnish the means of removal, reduces "all the
French" in Quebec to a very small number.]

[Footnote 113: Charlevoix.]

[Footnote 114: Charlevoix, tom. i., p. 273.]

[Footnote 115: "L'île au Cap Bréton (c'étoit bien peu de choses que
l'établissement que nous avions alors dans cette île) le fort de Quebec
environné de quelques méchantes maisons et de quelques baraques, deux ou
trois cabanes dans l'Île de Montreal, autant peut-être à Tadoussac, et
en quelques autres endroits sur le fleuve St. Laurent, pour la commodité
de la pêché et de la Traité, un commencement d'habitation aux Trois
Rivières et les rivières de Port Royal, voilà en quoi consistoit la
Nouvelle France et tout le fruit des découvertes de Verazzani, de Jaques
Cartier, de M. de Roberval, de Champlain, des grandes dépenses de
Marquis de la Roche, et de M. de Monts et de l'industrie d'un grand
nombre de Français qui auroient pu y faire un grand établissement, s'ils
eussent été bien conduits."--Charlevoix, tom. i., p. 274.]

[Footnote 116: See Appendix, No. XVI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 117: The Jesuits always retained the superior position they
held from the first among the Roman Catholic missionaries of Canada.
There is a well-known Canadian proverb, "Pour faire un Recollet il faut
une hachette, pour un Prêtre un ciseau, mais pour un Jésuite il faut un
pinceau." See Appendix, No. XVII., (see Vol II) for Professor Kalm's
account of these three classes.]


Having followed the course of discovery and settlement in New France up
to the death of the man who stamped the first permanent impression upon
that country, it is now time to review its character and condition at
the period when it became the abode of a civilized people. Champlain's
deputed commission of governor gave him authority over all that France
possessed or claimed on the continent and islands of North America;
Newfoundland, Isle Royale, and Acadia, were each portions of this vast
but vague territory; and those unknown, boundless solitudes of ice and
snow, lying toward the frozen north, whose very existence was a
speculation, were also, by the shadowy right of a European king, added
to his wide dominion. Of that portion, however, called Canada, it is
more especially the present subject to treat.

Canada is a vast plain, irregular in elevation and feature, forming a
valley between two ranges of high land; one of these ranges divides it,
to the north, from the dreary territories of Hudson's Bay; the other, to
the south, from the republic of the United States and the British
province of New Brunswick. None of the hills rise to any great height;
with one exception, Man's Hill, in the State of Maine, 2000 feet is
their greatest altitude above the sea. The elevated districts are,
however, of very great extent, broken, rugged, and rocky, clothed with
dense forests, intersected with rapid torrents, and varied with
innumerable lakes. The great plain of Canada narrows to a mere strip of
low land by the side of the St. Lawrence, as it approaches the eastern
extremity. From Quebec to the gulf on the north side, and toward Gaspé
on the south, the grim range of mountains reaches almost to the water's
edge; westward of that city the plain expands, gradually widening into a
district of great beauty and fertility; again, westward of Montreal, the
level country becomes far wider and very rich, including the broad and
valuable flats that lie along the lower waters of the Ottawa. The rocky,
elevated shores of Lake Huron bound this vast valley to the west; the
same mountain range extends along the northern shore of Lake Superior;
beyond lie great tracts of fertile soil, where man's industrious hand
has not yet been applied.

Canada may be described as lying between the meridians of 57° 50' and
90° west; from the mouth of the Esquimaux River on the confines of
Labrador, to the entrance of the stream connecting the waters of Lake
Superior and the Rainy Lake, bordering on Prince Rupert's Land. The
parallels of 42° and 52° inclose this country to the south and north.
The greatest length is about 1300 miles, the breadth 700. A space of
348,000 square miles is inclosed within these limits.

The great lakes in Canada give a character to that country distinct from
any other in the Old World or the New. They are very numerous; some far
exceed all inland waters elsewhere in depth and extent; they feed,
without apparent diminution, the great river St. Lawrence; the tempest
plows their surface into billows that rival those of the Atlantic,[118]
and they contain more than half of all the fresh water upon the surface
of the globe.[119]

Superior[120] is the largest and most elevated of these lakes: it is
crescent-shaped, convex to the north; to the southeast and southwest its
extremities are narrow points: the length through the curve is 360
geographical miles, the breadth in the widest part 140, the
circumference 1500. The surface of this vast sheet of fresh water is 627
feet above the level of the Atlantic; from various indications upon the
shores, there is good reason to conclude that at some remote period it
was forty or fifty feet higher. The depth of Lake Superior varies much
in different parts, but is generally very great; at the deepest it is
probably 1200 feet. The waters are miraculously pure and transparent;
many fathoms down, the eye can distinctly trace the rock and shingle of
the bottom, and follow the quick movements of the numerous and beautiful
fish inhabiting these crystal depths. No tides vary the stillness of
this inland sea, but when a strong prevailing wind sweeps over the
surface, the waves are lashed to fury, and the waters, driven by its
force, crowd up against the leeward shore. When in the spring the warm
sun melts the mountain snows, and each little tributary becomes an
impetuous torrent pouring into this great basin, the level of the
surface rises many feet. Although no river of any magnitude helps to
supply Lake Superior, a vast number of small streams fall in from among
clefts and glens along the rugged shores;[121] there are also many large
islands; one, Isle Royale, is more than forty miles in length. In some
places lofty hills[122] rise abruptly from the water's edge; in others
there are intervals of lower lands for sixty or seventy miles, but every
where stands the primeval forest, clothing height and hollow alike. At
the south-eastern extremity of this lake, St. Mary's Channel carries the
superabundant waters for nearly forty miles, till they fall into Lake
Huron; about midway between, they rush tumultuously down a steep
descent, with a tremendous roar, through shattered masses of rock,
filling the pure air above with clouds of snowy foam.

Lake Huron is the next in succession and the second in magnitude of
these inland seas. The outline is very irregular, to the north and east
formed by the Canadian territory, to the southwest by that of the United
States. From where the Channel of St. Mary enters this lake to the
furthest extremity is 240 miles, the greatest breadth is 220, the
circumference about 1000; the surface is only 32 feet lower than that of
Superior; in depth and in pure transparency the waters of this lake are
not surpassed by its great neighbor. Parallel to the north shore runs a
long, narrow peninsula called Cabot Head, which, together with a chain
of islands, shuts in the upper waters so as almost to form a separate
and distinct lake. The Great Manitoulin Island, the largest of this
chain, is seventy-five miles in length. In the Indian tongue the name
denotes it the abode of the Great Spirit,[123] and the simple savages
regard these woody shores with reverential awe.

To the north and west of Lake Huron the shores are generally rugged and
precipitous; abrupt heights of from 30 to 100 feet rise from the water's
edge, formed of clay, huge stones, steep rocks, and wooded acclivities;
further inland, the peaks of the Cloche Mountains ascend to a
considerable height. To the east, nature presents a milder aspect; a
plain of great extent and richness stretches away toward the St.
Lawrence. Many streams pour their flood into this lake; the principal
are the Maitland, Severn, Moon, and French Rivers; they are broad and
deep, but their sources lie at no great distance. By far the largest
supply of water comes from the vast basin of Lake Superior, through the
Channel of St. Mary. Near the northwestern extremity of Huron, a narrow
strait[124] connects it with Lake Michigan in the United States; there
is a slight difference of level between these two great sheets of water,
and a current constantly sets into the southern basin: this lake is also
remarkable for its depth and transparency.[125]

At the southern extremity of Lake Huron, its overflow pours through a
river about thirty miles in length into a small lake; both lake and
river bear the name of St. Clair.[126] Thence the waters flow on,
through the broad but shallow stream of the Detroit, until they fall
into Lake Erie thirty miles below; on either side, the banks and
neighboring districts are rich in beauty and abundantly fertile.

Lake Erie is shallow and dangerous, the anchorage is bad, the harbors
few and inconvenient. Long, low promontories project for a considerable
distance from the main land, and embarrass the navigation; but the
coasts, both on the Canadian and American side, are very fertile.[127]
Lake Erie is about 265 miles long, and 63 wide at its greatest breadth;
the circumference is calculated at 658 miles; its surface lies 30 feet
below the level of Lake Huron.[128] The length of the lake stretches
northeast, almost the same direction as the line of the River St.

The Niagara River flows from the northeastern extremity of Lake Erie to
Lake Ontario in a course of 33 miles, with a fall of not less than 334
feet. About twenty miles below Lake Erie is the grandest sight that
nature has laid before the human eye--the Falls of Niagara. A stream
three quarters of a mile wide, deep and rapid, plunges over a rocky
ledge 150 feet in height; about two thirds of the distance across from
the Canadian side stands Goat Island, covered with stately timber: four
times as great a body of water precipitates itself over the northern or
Horse-shoe Fall as that which flows over the American portion. Above the
cataract the river becomes very rapid and tumultuous in several places,
particularly at the Ferry of Black Rock, where it rushes past at the
rate of seven miles an hour; within the last mile there is a tremendous
indraught to the Falls. The shores on both sides of the Niagara River
are of unsurpassed natural fertility, but there is little scenic beauty
around to divert attention from the one object. The simplicity of this
wonder adds to the force of its impression: no other sight over the wide
world so fills the mind with awe and admiration. Description may convey
an idea of the height and breadth[129]--the vast body of
water[130]--the profound abyss--the dark whirlpools--the sheets of
foam[131]--the plumy column of spray[132] rising up against the sky--the
dull, deep sound that throbs through the earth, and fills the air for
miles and miles with its unchanging voice[133]--but of the magnitude of
this idea, and the impression, stamped upon the senses by the reality,
it is vain to speak to those who have not stood beside Niagara.

Tho descent of the land from the shores of Lake Erie to those of Ontario
is general and gradual,[134] and there is no feature in the
neighborhood of the Falls to mark its locality. From the Erie boundary
the river flows smoothly through a level but elevated plain, branching
round one large and some smaller islands. Although the deep, tremulous
sound of Niagara tells of its vicinity, there is no unusual appearance
till within about a mile, when the waters begin to ripple and hasten on;
a little further it dashes down a magnificent rapid, then again becomes
tranquil and glassy, but glides past with astonishing swiftness. There
are numberless points whence the fall of this great river may be well
seen: the best is Table Rock, at the top of the cataract; the most
wonderful is the recess between the falling flood and the cliff over
which it leaps.

For some length below Niagara the waters are violently agitated;
however, at the distance of half a mile, a ferry plies across in safety.
The high banks on both sides of the river extend to Queenston and
Lewiston, eight miles lower, confining the waters to a channel of no
more than a quarter of a mile in breadth, between steep and lofty
cliffs; midway is the whirlpool,[135] where the current rushes
furiously round within encircling heights. Below Queenston the river
again rolls along a smooth stream, between level and cultivated banks,
till it pours its waters into Lake Ontario.

Ontario is the last[136] and the most easterly of the chain of
lakes.[137] The greatest length is 172 miles; at the widest it measures
59 miles across; the circumference is 467 miles, and the surface is 334
feet below the level of Lake Erie. The depth of Ontario varies very much
along the coast, being seldom more than from three to 50 fathoms; and in
the center, a plummet, with 300 fathoms of line, has been tried in vain
for soundings. A sort of gravel, small pieces of limestone, worn round
and smooth by the action of water, covers the shores, lying in long
ridges sometimes miles in extent. The waters, like those of the other
great lakes, are very pure and beautiful, except where the shallows
along the margin are stirred up by violent winds: for a few days in June
a yellow, unwholesome scum covers the surface at the edge every year.
There is a strange phenomenon connected with Ontario, unaccounted for by
scientific speculation; each seventh year, from some inscrutable cause,
the waters reach to an unusual height, and again subside, mysteriously
as they arose. The beautiful illusion of the mirage spreads its dreamy
enchantment over the surface of Ontario in the summer calms, mixing
islands, clouds, and waters in strange confusion.[138]

The outline of the shores is much diversified: to the northeast lie low
lands and swampy marshes; to the north and northeast extends a bold
range of elevated grounds; southward the coast becomes again flat for
some distance inland, till it rises into the ridge of heights that marks
the position of Niagara. The country bordering the lake is generally
rich and productive, and was originally covered with forest. A ridge of
lofty land runs from the beautiful Bay of Quinté, on the northwest of
the lake, westward along the shore, at a distance of nine or more miles:
from these heights innumerable streams flow into Ontario on one side,
and into the lakes and rivers of the back country on the other. At
Toronto the ridge recedes to the distance of twenty-four miles northeast
from the lake, separating the tributary waters of Lakes Huron and
Ontario; thence merging in the Burlington Heights, it continues along
the southwest side from four to eight miles distant from the shore to
the high grounds about Niagara.

Besides the great stream of Niagara, many rivers flow into Ontario both
on the Canadian and American sides. The bays and harbors are also very
numerous, affording great facilities for navigation and commerce: in
this respect the northern shore is the most favored--the Bays of Quinté
and Burlington are especially remarkable for their extent and

The northeast end of Lake Ontario, where its waters pour into the St.
Lawrence, is a scene of striking beauty;[140] numerous wooded islands,
in endless variety of form and extent, divide the entrance of the Great
River[141] into a labyrinth of tortuous channels, for twelve miles in
breadth from shore to shore: this width gradually decreases as the
stream flows on to Prescot, fifty miles below; a short distance beyond
that town the rapids commence,[142] and thence to Montreal the
navigation is interrupted for vessels of burden; boats, rafts, and small
steamers, however, constantly descend these tumultuous waters, and not
unfrequently are lost in the dangerous attempt. The most beautiful and
formidable of these rapids is called the Cedars, from the rich groves of
that fragrant tree covering numerous and intricate islands, which
distort the rushing stream into narrow and perilous channels: the water
is not more than ten feet deep in some places, and flows at the rate of
twelve miles an hour. The river there widens into Lake St. Francis, and
again into Lake St. Louis, which drains a large branch of the Ottawa at
its south-western extremity. The water of this great tributary is
remarkably clear and of a bright emerald color; that of the St. Lawrence
at this junction is muddy, from having passed over deep beds of marl for
several miles above its entrance to Lake St. Louis: for some distance
down the lake the different streams can be plainly distinguished from
each other. From the confluence of the first branches above Montreal
these two great rivers seem bewildered among the numerous and beautiful
islands, and, hurrying past in strong rapids, only find rest again in
the broad, deep waters many miles below.

The furthest sources of the Ottawa River are unknown.[143] It rises to
importance at the outlet from Lake Temiscaming, 350 miles west of its
junction with the St. Lawrence.[144] Beyond the Falls and Portage des
Allumettes, 110 miles above Hull, this stream has been little explored.
There it is divided into two channels by a large island fifteen miles
long: the southernmost of these expands into the width of four or five
miles, and communicates by a branch of the river with the Mud and Musk
Rat Lakes. Twelve miles further south the river again forms two
branches, including an extensive and beautiful island twenty miles in
length; numerous rapids and cascades diversify this wild but lovely
scene; thence to the foot of the Chenaux, wooded islands in picturesque
variety deck the bosom of the stream, and the bright blue waters here
wind their way for three miles through a channel of pure white marble.
Nature has bestowed abundant fertility as well as beauty upon this
favored district. The Gatineau River joins the Ottawa near Hull, after a
course of great length. This stream is navigated by canoes for more than
300 miles, traversing an immense valley of rich soil and picturesque

At the foot of the Chenaux the magnificent Lake des Chats opens to
view, in length about fifteen miles; the shores are strangely indented,
and numbers of wooded islands stud the surface of the clear waters. At
the foot of the lake there are falls and rapids;[145] thence to Lake
Chaudière, a distance of six miles, the channel narrows, but expands
again to form that beautiful and extensive basin. Rapids again succeed,
and continue to the Chaudière Falls. The boiling pool into which these
waters descend is of great depth: the sounding-line does not reach the
bottom at the length of 300 feet. It is supposed that the main body of
the river flows by a subterraneous passage, and rises again half a mile
lower down. Below the Chaudière Falls the navigation is uninterrupted to
Grenville, sixty miles distant. The current is scarcely perceptible; the
banks are low, and generally over-flowed in the spring; but the varying
breadth of the river, the numerous islands, the magnificent forests, and
the crystal purity of the waters, lend a charm to the somewhat
monotonous beauty of the scene. At Grenville commences the Long Sault, a
swift and dangerous rapid, which continues with intervals till it falls
into the still Lake of the Two Mountains. Below the heights from whence
this sheet of water derives its name, the well-known Rapids of St.
Anne's discharge the main stream into the waters of the St.

Below the island of Montreal the St. Lawrence continues, in varying
breadth and considerable depth, to Sorel, where it is joined by the
Richelieu River from the south; thence opens the expanse of Lake St.
Peter, shallow and uninteresting; after twenty-five miles the Great
River contracts again, receives in its course the waters of the St.
Maurice, and other large streams; and 180 miles below Montreal the vast
flood pours through the narrow channel that lies under the shadow of
Quebec.[147] Below this strait lies a deep basin, nearly four miles
wide, formed by the head of the Island of Orleans: the main channel
continues by the south shore. It would be wearisome to tell of all the
numerous and beautiful islands that deck the bosom of the St. Lawrence
from Quebec to the Gulf. The river gradually expands till it reaches a
considerable breadth at the mouth of the Saguenay. There is a dark shade
for many miles below where this great tributary pours its gloomy flood
into the pure waters of the St. Lawrence: 120 miles westward it flows
from a large, circular sheet of water, called Lake St. John; but the
furthest sources lie in the unknown regions of the west and north. For
about half its course, from the lake to Tadoussac at the mouth, the
banks are rich and fertile; but thence cliffs rise abruptly out of the
water to a lofty height--sometimes 2000 feet--and two or three miles
apart. The depth of the Saguenay is very great, and the surrounding
scenery is of a magnificent but desolate character.

Below the entrance of the Saguenay the St. Lawrence increases to twenty
miles across, at the Bay of Seven Islands to seventy, at the head of the
large and unexplored island of Anticosti to ninety, and at the point
where it may be said to enter the Gulf between Gaspé and the Labrador
coast, reaches the enormous breadth of 120 miles. In mid-channel both
coasts can be seen; the mountains on the north shore rise to a great
height in a continuous range, their peaks capped with eternal snows.

Having traced this vast chain of water communication from its remotest
links, it is now time to speak of the magnificent territory which it
opens to the commerce and enterprise of civilized man.

Upper or Western Canada[148] is marked off from the eastern province by
the natural boundary of the Ottawa or Grand River. It consists almost
throughout of one uniform plain. In all those districts hitherto settled
or explored, there is scarcely a single eminence that can be called a
hill, although traversed by two wide ridges, rising above the usual
level of the country. The greater of these elevations passes through
nearly the whole extent of the province from southeast to northwest,
separating the waters falling into the St. Lawrence and the great lakes
from those tributary to the Ottawa: the highest point is forty miles
north of Kingston, being also the most elevated level on that
magnificent modern work, the Rideau Canal;[149] it is 290 feet above the
Ottawa at Bytown, and 160 feet higher than the surface of Lake Ontario.
Toward these waters the plain descends at the gradient of about four
feet in the mile; this declivity is imperceptible to the eye, and is
varied by gently undulating slopes and inequalities. Beyond the broad,
rich valley lying to the north of this elevation there is a rocky and
mountainous country; still farther north are seen snow-covered peaks of
a great but unknown height; thence to the pole extends the dreary region
of the Hudson Bay territory.

The lesser elevation begins near the eastern extremity of Ontario, and
runs almost parallel with the shores of the lake to a point about
twenty-four miles northwest from Toronto, where it separates the streams
flowing into Lakes Huron and Ontario: it then passes southeast between
Lakes Erie and Ontario, and terminates on the Genesee in the United
States. This has a more perceptible elevation than the southern ridge,
and in some places rises into bold heights.

The only portion of the vast plain of Western Canada surveyed or
effectually explored is included by a line drawn from the eastern coast
of Lake Huron to the Ottawa River, and the northern shores of the great
chain of lake and river; this is, however, nearly as large as the whole
of England.

The natural features of Lower or Eastern Canada are unsurpassed by those
of any other country in grace and variety: rivers, lakes, mountains,
forests, prairies, and cataracts are grouped together in endless
combinations of beauty and magnificence. The eastern districts,
beginning with the bold sea-coast and broad waters of the St. Lawrence,
are high, mountainous, and clothed with dark forests on both sides, down
to the very margin of the river. To the north, a lofty and rugged range
of heights runs parallel with the shore as far westward as Quebec;
thence it bends west and southwest to the banks of the Ottawa. To the
south, the elevated ridge, where it reaches within sixty miles of
Quebec, turns from the parallel of the St. Lawrence southwest and south
into the United States; this ridge, known by the name of the Alleganies,
rises abruptly out of the Gulf of St. Lawrence at Percé, between the
Baye de Chaleur and Gaspé Cape, and is more distant from the Great River
than that upon the northern shore. Where the Alleganies enter the United
States they divide the plains of the Atlantic coast from the basin of
the Ohio; their greatest height is about 4000 feet above the level of
the sea.

The Valley of the St. Lawrence, lying between these two ranges of
heights, is marked by great diversities of hill, plain, and valley. Both
from the north and south numerous rivers pour their tributary flood into
the great waters of Canada; of those eastward of the Saguenay little is
known beyond their entrance; they flow through cliffs of light-colored
sand, rocky, wooded knolls, or, in some places, deep, swampy moss-beds
nearly three feet in depth. From the Saguenay to Quebec the mountain
ridge along the shore of the St. Lawrence is unbroken, save where
streams find their way to the Great River, but beyond this coast-border
the country is in some places level, in others undulating, with hills of
moderate height, and well-watered valleys. From Quebec westward to the
St. Maurice, which joins the St. Lawrence at Three Rivers, the land
rises in a gentle ascent from the banks of the Great River, and presents
a rich tract of fertile plains and slopes: in the distance, a lofty
chain of mountains protects this favored district from the bitter
northern blast. Along the north bank of the St. Lawrence, from the St.
Maurice, the country toward the Ottawa is slightly elevated into table
ridges, with occasional abrupt declivities and some extensive plains. In
this portion of Canada are included the islands of Montreal, Jesus, and
Perrot, formed by the various branches of the Great River and the
Ottawa, where their waters unite. Montreal is the largest and most
fertile of these islands; its length is thirty-two miles and breadth
ten; the general shape is triangular. Isle Jesus is twenty-one miles by
six in extent, and also very rich; there are, besides, several other
smaller islands of considerable fertility. Isle Perrot is poor and
sandy. The remote country to the north of the Ottawa is but little

On the south shore of the St. Lawrence, the peninsula of Gaspé is the
most eastern district; this large tract of country has been very little
explored: so far as it has been examined, it is uneven, mountainous, and
intersected with deep ravines; but the forests, rivers, and lakes are
very fine, and the valleys fertile. The sea-beach is low and hard,[150]
answering the purposes of a road; at the Cape of Gaspé, however, there
are some bold and lofty cliffs. Behind the beach the land rises into
high, round hills, well wooded; sheltered from the Gaspé district to the
Chaudière River, the country is not so stern as on the northern side of
the St. Lawrence; though somewhat hilly, it abounds in large and fertile
valleys. The immediate shores of the river are flat; thence irregular
ridges arise, till they reach an elevated table-land fifteen or twenty
miles from the beach. From the Chaudière River westward extends that
rich and valuable country now known by the name of the Eastern
Townships. At the mouth of the Chaudière the banks of the St. Lawrence
are bold and lofty, but they gradually lower to the westward till they
sink into the flats of Baye du Febre, and form the marshy shores of Lake
St. Peter, whence a rich plain extends to a great distance. This
district contains several high, isolated mountains, and is abundantly
watered by lakes and rivers. To the south lies the territory of the
United States.


[Footnote 118: "The sea (if it may be so termed) on Lake Ontario is so
high during a sharp gale, that it was at first thought the smaller class
steamboats could not live on it; and on Lake Superior, the waves almost
rival those of the far-famed Cape of Storms, while the ground-swell,
owing to the comparative shallowness, or little specific gravity of the
fresh water, is such as to make the oldest sailor sick. Whether the
water in the lowest depths of Lakes Superior and Ontario be salt or
fresh, we can not ascertain; for the greater density of the former may
keep it always below, or there may be a communication with the
fathomless abysses of the ocean."--Montgomery Martin, p. 181.]

[Footnote 119: "Beyond Lake Superior, stretching into the vast interior
of North America, we find first a long chain of little lakes connected
by narrow channels, and which, combined, form what in the early
narratives and even treaties is called Long Lake. Next occur, still
connected by the same channel, the larger expanses of Lake La Pluie and
Lake of the Woods. Another channel of about 100 miles connects this last
with the Winnipeg Lake, whose length from north to south is almost equal
to the Superior; but in a few parts only it attains the breadth of 50
miles. The whole of this wonderful series of lakes, separated by such
small intervals, may almost be considered as forming one inland sea.
There is nothing parallel to this in the rest of the globe. The Tzad,
the great interior sea of Africa, does not equal the Ontario. The
Caspian, indeed, is considerably greater than any of these lakes, almost
equal to the whole united; but the Caspian forms the final receptacle of
many great rivers, among which the Volga is of the first magnitude. But
the northern waters, after forming this magnificent chain of lakes, are
not yet exhausted, but issue forth from the last of them, to form one of
the noblest river channels either in the old or new continent."--_History
of Discoveries and Travels in North America_, by H. Murray, Esq.,
vol. ii., p. 458.]

[Footnote 120: "Lake Superior is called, also, Keetcheegahmi and
Missisawgaiegon. It is remarkable, that while every other large lake is
fed by rivers of the first order, this, the most capacious on the
surface of the globe, does not receive a third or even fourth rate
stream; the St. Louis, the most considerable, not having a course of
more than 150 miles. But, whatever deficiency there may be in point of
magnitude, it is compensated by the vast number which pour in their
copious floods from the surrounding heights. The dense covering of wood
and the long continuance of frost must also, in this region, greatly
diminish the quantity drawn off by evaporation."--Bouchette, vol. i., p.
127, 128. Darby's _View of the United States_ (1828), p. 200.]

[Footnote 121: "The _Pictured_ Rocks (so called from their appearance)
are situated on the south side of the lake, toward the east end, and are
really quite a natural curiosity; they form a perpendicular wall 300
feet high, extending about twelve miles, with numerous projections and
indentations in every variety of form, and vast caverns, in which the
entering waves make a tremendous sound. The Pictured Rocks of Lake
Superior have been described as 'surprising groups of overhanging
precipices, towering walls, caverns, waterfalls, and prostrate ruins,
which are mingled in the most wonderful disorder, and burst upon the
view in ever-varying and pleasing succession.' Among the more remarkable
objects are the Cascade La Portaille and the Doric Arch. The Cascade
consists of a considerable stream precipitated from a height of 70 feet
by a single leap into the lake, and projected to such a distance that a
boat may pass beneath the fall and the rock perfectly dry. The Doric
Arch has all the appearance of a work of art, and consists of an
isolated mass of sandstone, with four pillars supporting an entablature
of stone, covered with soil, and a beautiful grove of pine and spruce
trees, some of which are 60 feet in height."--Montgomery Martin's
_History of Canada_, vol. i., p. 211.]

[Footnote 122: "The Thunder Mountain is one of the most appalling
objects of the kind that I have ever seen, being a bleak rock, about
twelve hundred feet above the level of the lake, with a perpendicular
face of its full height toward the west; the Indians have a
superstition, which one can hardly repeat without becoming giddy, that
any person who may scale the eminence, and turn round on the brink of
its fearful wall, will live forever."--Simpson, vol. i., p. 33.]

[Footnote 123: "The Indian appellation of 'Sacred Isles' first occurs at
Lake Huron, and thence westward is met with in Superior, Michigan, and
the vast and numerous lakes of the interior. Those who have been in
Asia, and have turned their attention to the subject, will recognize the
resemblance in sound between the North American Indian and the Tartar
names."--Montgomery Martin's _History of Canada_, vol. i., p. 117.]

[Footnote 124: "The remarkable post of Michillimackinack is a beautiful
island or great rock, planted in the strait of the same name, which
forms the connection between Lakes Huron and Michigan. The meaning of
the Indian word Michillimackinack is _Great Turtle_. The island is
crowned with a cap 300 feet above the surrounding waters, on the top of
which is a fortification. If Quebec is the Gibraltar of North America,
Mackinaw (the vulgar appellation for this fort) is only second in its
physical character, and in its susceptibilities of improvement as a
military post. It is also a must important position for the facilities
it affords in the fur trade between New York and the Northwest."--Mr.
Colton's _American Lakes_, vol. i., p. 92.

The value of canals and steam navigation may be judged of from the fact
that, in 1812, the news of the declaration of war against Great Britain
by the United States did not reach the post of Michillimackinack (1107
miles from Quebec) in a shorter time than two months; the same place is
now within the distance of ten days' journey from the Atlantic.]

[Footnote 125: "So clear are the waters of these lakes, that a white
napkin, tied to a lead, and sunk thirty fathoms beneath a smooth
surface, may be seen as distinctly as when immersed three
feet."--Colton. vol. i., p. 93.]

[Footnote 126: "The St. Clair (according to Dr. Bigsby) is the only
river of discharge for Lakes Superior, Michigan, and Huron, which cover
a surface of thirty-eight and a half million of acres, and are fed by
numerous large rivers. Other able observers are of opinion that the
Missouri and the Mississippi receive some of the waters of Superior and
Michigan. Many persons think that a subterraneous communication exists
between all the great lakes, as is surmised to be the case between the
Mediterranean and the Euxine."--Montgomery Martin.]

[Footnote 127: "The Lake Erie is justly dignified by the illustrious
name of Conti, for assuredly it is the finest lake upon earth. Its
circumference extends to 230 leagues; but it affords every where such a
charming prospect, that its banks are decked with oak-trees, elms,
chestnut-trees, walnut-trees, apple-trees, plum-trees, and vines, which
bear their fine clusters up to the very top of the trees, upon a sort of
ground that lies as smooth as one's hand. Such ornaments as these are
sufficient to give rise to the most agreeable idea of a landscape in the
world."--La Hontan, in Pinkerton, vol. xiii., p. 343 (1683).

"Le nom que le Lac Erié porte est celui d'une nation de la langue
Huronne, qui était établie sur ses bords et que les Iroquois ont
entièrement détruite. Erié veut dire Chat, et les Eriés sont nommés dans
quelques relations la nation du Chat. Ce nom vient apparemment de la
quantité de ces animaux qu'on trouve dans le pays. Quelqes cartes
modernes ont donné au Lac Erié le nom de Conti, mais ce nom n'a pas fait
fortune, non plus que ceux de Condé, de Tracy, et d'Orléans, donnés au
Lac Huron, au Lac Supérieur, et au Lac Michigan."--Charlevoix, tom. v.,
p, 374 (1721).]

[Footnote 128: "In extreme depth Lake Erie varies from forty to
forty-five fathoms, with a rocky bottom. Lakes Superior and Huron have a
stiff, clayey bottom, mixed with shells. Lake Erie reported to be the
only one of the series in which any current is perceptible. The fact, if
it is one, is usually ascribed to its shallowness; but the vast volume
of its outlet--the Niagara River--with its strong current, is a much
more probable cause than the small depth of its water, which may be far
more appropriately adduced as the reason why the navigation is
obstructed by ice much more than either of the other great lakes. As
connected with trade and navigation, this lake is the most important of
all the great chain, not only because it is bordered by older
settlements than any of them except Ontario, but still more because from
its position it concentrates the trade of the vast West. The Kingston
Herald notices a most extraordinary occurrence on Lake Erie during a
late storm (1836). A channel was made by the violence of the tempest
through Long Point, N. Foreland, 300 yards wide, and from 11 to 15 feet
deep. It had been in contemplation to cut a canal at this very spot, the
expenses of which were estimated at £12,000. The York Courier confirms
this extraordinary intelligence, stating that the storm made a breach
through the point near the main land, converted the peninsula into an
island, and actually made a canal 400 yards wide, and eight or ten feet
deep, almost at the very point where the proposed canal was to be cut,
and rendered nothing else now necessary in order to secure a safe
channel for the vessels, and a good harbor on both sides, than the
construction of a pier on the west side, to prevent the channel being
filled up with sand."--Montgomery Martin.]

[Footnote 129: "The Horse-shoe Cataract on the British side is the
largest of the Falls. The curvatures have been geometrically computed at
700 yards, and its altitude, taken with a plumb-line from the surface of
the Table Rock, 149 feet; the American fall, narrowed by Goat Island,
does not exceed 375 yards in curvilinear length (the whole irregular
semicircle is nearly three quarters of a mile), its perpendicular height
being 162 feet, or 13 feet higher than the top of the Great Fall, adding
57 feet for the fall. The rapids thus give only a total of 219 feet,
which is less than many other falls; but their magnificence consists in
the volume of the water precipitated over them, which has been computed
at 2400 millions of tons per day, 102 millions per hour! A calculation
made at Queenston, below the Falls, is as follows: The river is here
half a mile broad; it averages 25 feet deep; current three miles an
hour; in one hour it will discharge a current of water three miles long,
half a mile wide, and twenty-five feet deep, containing 1,111,400,000
cubic feet, being 18,524,000 cubic feet, or 113,510,000 gallons of water
each minute."--Montgomery Martin's _History of Canada_.]

[Footnote 130: "The total area of the four great lakes which pour forth
their waters to the ocean over the Falls of Niagara is estimated at
100,000 square miles."--Montgomery Martin.]

[Footnote 131: Colonel Bouchette observes, that, according to the
altitude of the sun, and the situation of the spectator, a distinct and
bright iris is soon amid the revolving columns of mist that soar from
the foaming chasm, and shroud the broad front of the gigantic flood.
Both arches of the bow are seldom entirely elicited, but the interior
segment is perfect, and its prismatic hues are extremely glowing and
vivid. The fragments of a plurality of rainbows are sometimes to be seen
in various parts of the misty curtain.]

[Footnote 132: Symptoms of the Falls are discerned from a vast distance.
From Buffalo, twenty miles off, two small fleecy specks are distinctly
seen, appearing and disappearing at intervals. These are the clouds of
spray arising from the Falls; it is even asserted that they have been
seen from Lake Erie, a distance of fifty-four miles.--Weld, p. 374.]

[Footnote 133: The sound of the Falls appears to have been heard at the
distance of twenty or even forty miles: but these effects depend much on
the direction of the wind, and the tranquil or disturbed state of the
atmosphere. Mr. Weld mentions having approached the Falls within half a
mile without hearing any sound, while the spray was but just
discernible.--Weld, p. 374.]

[Footnote 134: "The shores of Lake Erie, though flat, are elevated about
400 feet above those of Lake Ontario. The descent takes place in the
short interval between the two lakes traversed by the Niagara Channel.
This descent is partly gradual, producing only a succession of rapids.
It is at Queenston, about seven miles below the present site of the
Falls, that a range of hills marks the descent to the Ontario level.
Volney conceives it certain that this must have been the place down
which the river originally fell, and that the continued and violent
action of its waves must have gradually worn away the rocks beneath
them, and in the course of ages carried the Fall back to its present
position, from which it continues gradually receding. Mr. Howison
confirms the statement, that, in the memory of persons now living in
Upper Canada, a considerable change has been observed. The whole course
of the river downward to Queenston is through a deep dell, bordered by
broken and perpendicular steeps, rudely overhung by trees and shrubs,
and the opposite strata of which correspond, affording thus the
strongest presumption that it is a channel hewn out by the river
itself."--H. Murray's _Historical Description of America_, vol. ii., p.

"It is now considered that there is clear geological proof that the Fall
once existed at Queenston. The 710,000 tons of water which each minute
pour over the precipice of the Niagara, are estimated to carry away a
foot of the cliff every year; therefore we must suppose a period of
20,000 years occupied in the recession of the cataract to its present
site."--Lyell's _Geology_.]

[Footnote 135: "The mouth of the whirlpool is more than 1000 feet wide,
and in length about 2000. Mr. Howison, in his sketches of Upper Canada,
says that the current of the river has formed a circular excavation in
the high and perpendicular banks, resembling a bay. The current, which
is extremely rapid, whenever it reaches the upper point of this bay,
forsakes the direct channel, and sweeps wildly round the sides of it;
when, having made this extraordinary circuit, it regains its proper
course, and rushes with perturbed velocity between two perpendicular
precipices, which are not more than 400 feet asunder. The surface of the
whirlpool is in a state of continual agitation. The water boils, mantles
up, and wreaths in a manner that proves its fearful depth, and the
confinement it suffers; the trees that come within the sphere of the
current are swept along with a quivering, zigzag motion, which it is
difficult to describe. This singular body of water must be several
hundred feel deep, and has not hitherto been frozen over, although in
spring the broken ice that descends from Lake Erie descends in such
quantities upon its surface, and becomes so closely wedged together,
that it resists the current, and remains till warm weather breaks it up.
The whirlpool is one of the greatest natural curiosities in the Upper
Province, and its formation can not be rationally accounted
for."--Martin's _History of Canada_, p. 139.]

[Footnote 136: "This inland sea, though the smallest of the great chain
with which it is connected, is of such extent, that vessels in crossing
it lose sight of land, and must steer their way by the compass; and the
swell is often equal to that of the ocean. During the winter, the
northeast part of Ontario, from the Bay of Quinté to Sacket's Harbor, is
frozen across; but the wider part of the lake is frozen only to a short
distance from the shore. Lake Erie is frozen still less; the northern
parts of Huron and Michigan more; and Superior is said to be frozen to a
distance of seventy miles from its coasts. The navigation of Ontario
closes in October; ice-boats are sometimes used when the ice is _glare_
(smooth). One, mentioned by Lieutenant de Roos, was twenty-three feet in
length, resting on three skates of iron, one attached to each end of a
strong cross-bar, fixed under the fore-feet, the remaining one to the
stern, from the bottom of the rudder; the mast and sail those of a
common boat: when brought into play on the ice, she could sail (if it
may be so termed) with fearful rapidity, nearly twenty-three miles an
hour. One has been known to cross from Toronto to Fort George or
Niagara, a distance of forty miles, in little more than three quarters
of an hour; but, in addition to her speed before the wind, she is also
capable of beating well up to windward, requiring, however, an
experienced hand to manage her, in consequence of her extreme
sensibility of the rudder during her quick motion."--Martin's _History
of Canada_.

"The great earthquake that destroyed Lisbon happened on the 1st of
November, 1755, and on Lake Ontario strong agitations of the water were
observed from the month of October, 1755."--_Lettera Rarissima data
nelle Indie nella Isola di Jamaica a 7 Julio del_ 1503 (Bassano, 1810,
p. 29).

"From some submarine center in the Atlantic, this earthquake spread one
enormous convulsion over an area of 700,000 square miles, agitating, by
a single impulse, the lakes of Scotland and Sweden, and the islands of
the West Indian Sea. Not, however, by a simultaneous shock, for the
element of time comes in with the distance of undulation; and, together
with this, another complexity of action in the transmission of
earthquake movements through the sea, arising from the different rate of
progression at different depths. In the fact that the wave of the Lisbon
earthquake reached Plymouth at the rate of 2.1 miles per minute, and
Barbadoes at 7.3 miles per minute, there is illustration of the law that
the velocity of a wave is proportional to the square root of its depth,
and becomes a substitute for the sounding line in fixing the mean
proportional depth of different parts of this great ocean."--Humboldt.]

[Footnote 137: "There are two lakes in Lower Canada, Matapediac and
Memphremagog. The former is about 16 miles long, and three broad in its
greatest breadth, about 21 miles distant from the St. Lawrence River, in
the county of Rimouski; amid the islands that separate the waters
running into the St. Lawrence from those that run to the Bay of
Chaleurs, it is navigable for rafts of all kinds of timber, with which
the banks of the noble River Matapediac are thickly covered.
Memphremagog Lake, in the county of Stanstead, stretching its south
extremity into the State of Vermont, is of a semi-circular shape, 30
miles long, and very narrow. It empties itself into the fine river St.
Francis, by means of the River Magog, which runs through Lake
Scaswaninepus. The Memphremagog Lake is said to be navigable for ships
of 500 tons burden."--Martin's _History of Canada_, p. 102.]

[Footnote 138: "It is worthy of remark, that the great lakes of Upper
Canada are liable to the formation of the Prester or water-spout, and
that several instances are recorded of the occurrence of that truly
extraordinary phenomenon, the theory of which, however, is well known.
Whether electricity be a cause or a consequence of this formidable
meteor, appears, nevertheless, to be a question of some doubt among
natural philosophers; Gassendi being disposed to favor the former
opinion, while Cavallo espouses the latter."--Bouchette's _Topographical
and Statistical Description of Upper and Lower Canada_, vol. i., p.

[Footnote 139: "The most considerable harbors on the English side are
Toronto (York, the former name, has recently been changed to the Indian
name of the place, Toronto) and Kingston. Toronto is situated near the
head of Lake Ontario, on the north side of an excellent harbor or
elliptical basin, of an area of eight or nine miles, formed by a long,
low, sandy peninsula or island, stretching from the land east of the
town to Gibraltar Point, abreast of a good fort. The town of Toronto, at
that period York, was twice captured by the Americans, in April and
August, 1813, owing to its defenseless state, and a large ship of war on
the stocks burned. The Americans would not now find its capture such an
easy task. Little more than forty years ago, the site whereon Toronto
now stands, and the whole country to the north and west of it, was a
perfect wilderness; the land is now fast clearing--thickly settled by a
robust and industrious European-descended population, blessed with
health and competence, and on all sides indicating the rapid progress of
civilization. The other British town of importance on this shore is
Kingston, formerly Cataraqui or Frontenac, distant from Toronto 184
miles, and from Montreal 180 miles. It is, next to Quebec and Halifax,
the strongest British post in America, and, next to Quebec and Montreal,
the first in commercial importance. It is advantageously situated on the
north bank of Lake Ontario, at the head of the River St. Lawrence, and
is separated from Points Frederic and Henry by a bay, which extends a
considerable distance to the northwest beyond the town, where it
receives the water of a river flowing from the interior. Point Frederic
is a long, narrow peninsula, extending about half a mile into the lake,
distant from Kingston about three quarters of a mile on the opposite
side of its bay. This peninsula forms the west side of a narrow and deep
inlet called Navy Bay, from its being our chief naval dépôt on Lake
Ontario."--Martin's _History of Canada_.]

[Footnote 140: "The channel of the St. Lawrence is here so spacious that
it is called the Lake of the Thousand Islands. The vast number implied
in this name was considered a vague exaggeration, till the commissioners
employed in fixing the boundary with the United States actually counted
them, and found that they amounted to 1692. They are of every imaginable
size, shape, and appearance; some barely visible, others covering
fifteen acres; but, in general, their broken outline presents the most
picturesque combinations of wood and rock. The navigator, in steering
through them, sees an ever-changing scene: sometimes he is inclosed in a
narrow channel; then he discovers before him twelve openings, like so
many noble rivers; and, soon after, a spacious lake seems to surround
him on every side."--Bouchette, vol. i., p. 156; Howison's _Sketches of
Canada_, p. 46.]

[Footnote 141: "The St. Lawrence traverses the whole extent of Lower
Canada, as the lakes every where border and inclose Upper Canada. There
is a difficulty in tracing its origin, or, at least, which of the
tributaries of Lake Superior is to be called the St. Lawrence. The
strongest claim seems to be made by the series of channels which connect
all the great upper lakes, though, strictly speaking, till after the
Ontario, there is nothing which can very properly be called a river.
There are only a number of short canals connecting the different lakes,
or, rather, separating one immense lake into a number of great branches.
It seems an interesting question how this northern center of the
continent, at the precise latitude of about 50°, should pour forth so
immense and overwhelming a mass of waters; for through a great part of
its extent it is quite a dead flat, though the Winnepeg, indeed, draws
some tributaries from the Rocky Mountains. The thick forests with which
the surface is covered, the slender evaporation which takes place during
the long continuance of cold, and, at the same time, the thorough
melting of the snows by the strong summer heat, seem to be the chief
sources of this profuse and superabundant moisture."--H. Murray's
_Historical Account of Discoveries and Travels in North America_, vol.
ii., p. 459, 1829.]

[Footnote 142: "The statements laid before Parliament thus enumerate and
describe the five rapids of the St. Lawrence, which are impassable by
steam, and occur between Montreal and Kingston, a distance, by the St.
Lawrence River, of 171 miles, and by the Rideau Canal, 267 miles. The
rapids vary in rapidity, intricacy, depth and width of channel, and in
extent, from half a mile to nine miles. The Cedar Rapid, twenty-four
miles from La Chine, is nine miles long, very intricate, running from
nine to twelve miles an hour, and in some places only from nine to ten
feet water in the channel. The Coteau du Lac Rapid, six miles above the
former, is two miles long, equally intricate in channel, and in some
places only sixteen feet wide. Long Sault, forty-five miles above the
preceding, is nine or ten miles long, with generally the same depth of
water throughout. It is intersected by several islands, through whose
channels the water rushes with great velocity, so that boats are carried
through it, or on it, at the rate of twenty-seven miles an hour; at the
foot of the rapid the water takes a sudden leap over a slight precipice,
whence its name. From the Long Sault to Prescot is forty-one miles shoal
water, running from six to eight miles an hour, and impassable by
steamboats. Then the Rapid du Plas, half a mile long, and Rapid Galoose,
one and half a mile long, intervene."]

[Footnote 143: "According to Mr. M'Gregor (_Brit. Amer._, vol. ii., p.
525), the Ottawa, or Grand River, is said to have its source near the
Rocky Mountains, and to traverse in its windings a distance of 2500
miles. The more sober statement of Bouchette attributes to the Ottawa a
course of about 450 miles before joining the St. Lawrence."--Bouchette,
vol. i., p. 187.

"A tremendous scene is presented at the eastern part of Lake St. Louis,
where the St. Lawrence and its grand tributary, the Ottawa, rush down at
once and meet in dreadful conflict. The swell is then equal to that
produced by a high gale in the British Channel, and the breakers so
numerous, that all the skill of the boatmen is required to steer their
way. The Canadian boatmen, however, are among the most active and hardy
races in the world, and they have boats expressly constructed for the
navigation of these perilous channels. The largest of these, called, it
is not known why, the Durham boat, is used both here and in the rapids
of the Mohawk. It is long, shallow, and nearly flat-bottomed. The chief
instrument of steerage is a pole ten feet long, shod with iron, and
crossed at short intervals with small bars of wood like the feet of a
ladder. The men place themselves at the bow, two on each side, thrust
their poles into the channel, and grasping successively the wooden bars,
work their way toward the stern, thus pushing on the vessel in that
direction. At other times, by the brisk and vigorous use of the oar,
they catch and dash through the most favorable lines of current. In this
exhausting struggle, however, it is needful to have frequent pauses for
rest, and in the most difficult passages there are certain positions
fixed for this purpose, which the Canadians call _pipes_."--H. Murray's
_Hist. Descr. of America_, vol. ii., p. 473.]

[Footnote 144: "From the sea to Montreal, this superb river is called
the St. Lawrence; from thence to Kingston, in Upper Canada, the
Cataraqui or Iroquois; between Lakes Ontario and Erie, the Niagara;
between Lakes Erie and St. Clair, the Detroit; between Lakes St. Clair
and Huron, the St. Clair; and between Lakes Huron and Superior, the
distance is called the Narrows, or Falls of St. Mary. The St. Lawrence
discharges to the ocean annually about 4,277,880 millions of tons of
fresh water, of which 2,112,120 millions of tons may be reckoned melted
snow; the quantity discharged before the thaw comes on, being 4512
millions of tons per day for 240 days, and the quantity after the thaw
begins, being 25,560 millions per day for 125 days, the depths and
velocity when in and out of flood being duly considered: hence a ton of
water being nearly equal to 55 cubic yards of pure snow, the St.
Lawrence frees a country of more than 2000 miles square, covered to the
depth of three feet. The embouchure of this first-class stream is that
part of the Gulf of St. Lawrence where the island of Anticosti divides
the mouth of the river into two branches. According to Mr. M'Taggart, a
shrewd and humorous writer, the solid contents in cubic feet of the St.
Lawrence, embracing Lakes Superior, Huron, Michigan, Erie, and Ontario,
is estimated at 1,547,792,360,000 cubic feet, and the superficial area
being 72,930 square miles, the water therein would form a cubic column
of nearly 22 miles on each side!"--Montgomery Martin's _History of

[Footnote 145: "Kinnel Lodge, the residence of the celebrated Highland
chieftain M'Nab, is romantically situated on the south bank of the lake,
about five miles above the head of the Chats Rapids, which are three
miles long, and pass amid a labyrinth of varied islands, until the
waters of the Ottawa are suddenly precipitated over the Falls of the
Chats, which, to the number of fifteen or sixteen, form a curved line
across the river, regularly divided by woody islands, the falls being in
depth from sixteen to twenty feet."--M. Martin's _History of Canada_.]

[Footnote 146: See Appendix, No. XIX. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 147: "At Quebec, the River St. Lawrence narrows to 1314 yards;
yet the navigation is completely unobstructed, while there is formed
near the city a capacious harbor. About twenty-one miles lower, its
waters, beginning to mingle with those of the sea, acquire a saline
taste, which increases till, at Kamauraska, seventy-five miles nearer
its mouth, they become completely salt. Yet custom, with somewhat
doubtful propriety, considers the river as continued down to the island
of Anticosti, and bounded by Cape Rosier on the southern, and Mingau
settlement on the northern shore."--Bouchette's _Top. and Stat. Descr.
of Canada_, vol. i., p. 164-169.]

[Footnote 148: See Appendix, No. XX. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 149: "The Falls of the Rideau are about fifty feet in height
and 300 in breadth, being, at the time we saw them, more magnificent
than usual, by reason of the high state of the waters. It is from their
resemblance to a curtain that they are distinguished by the name of
Rideau, and they also give this name to the river that feeds them, which
again lends the same appellation to the canal that connects the Ottawa
with Lake Ontario."--Simpson, vol. i., p. 16.]

[Footnote 150: Modern alluvial accumulations are rapidly increasing on
some points of this coast, owing to the enormous mass of fresh water,
charged with earthy matter, that here mingles with the sea. The surface
of the water at the mouth of the St. Lawrence, where the depth is 100
fathoms, is stated by Bayfield to be turbid from this cause: yet that
this discoloration is superficial is evident, for in the wake of a ship
moving through the turbid surface, the clear blue waters of the sea are
seen below.]


Upon the surface of Canada are found manifest indications of that
tremendous deluge, the effects of which are so plainly visible in the
Old World. Huge bowlder stones[151] abound in almost every part of the
province; sometimes they are seen rounded, piled in high heaps on
extensive horizontal beds of limestone, swept together by the force of
some vast flood. Masses of various kinds of shells lie in great
quantities in hollows and valleys, some of them hundreds of feet above
the level of Lake Ontario. Near to great rivers, and often where now no
waters are at hand, undulations of rocks are seen like those found in
the beds of rapids where the channels are waved. These have evidently,
at some remote period, been the courses of floods now no longer
existing. On the shores of the Gulf of St. Lawrence detached bowlder
stones appear, some of enormous size, many tons in weight; they must
have come from a great distance, for nowhere in that region is there any
rock of similar material. In the upper strata of the country are
abundant fossil remains of distinct animal existences now unknown; they
are blended with the limestone in which they lie.

It seems certain that the whole of Canada has been violently convulsed
by some effort of nature since the floods of the deluge passed away; the
mountains are abrupt and irregular in outline, and in some places cleft
with immense chasms; the rivers also show singular contortions. North of
Quebec and in St. Paul's Bay are many traces of volcanic eruptions, and
vast masses of alluvial rocks, bearing marks of vitrification,
frequently appear on the surface of the earth. There is, besides, strong
evidence that the American Continent has lain for unknown ages beneath
the great deep, or that it is of later formation than Europe or Asia.

As far as it has been explored, the general geological structure of
Canada exhibits a granite country, with some calcareous rocks of a soft
texture in horizontal strata. The lower islands in the St. Lawrence are
merely inequalities of the vast granite strata which occasionally stand
above the level of the waters; the whole neighboring country appears as
if the Great River had at one time covered it. The banks of the St.
Lawrence are in many places formed of a schistus substance in a decaying
state, but still granite is every where found in strata, inclined, but
never parallel to the horizon. In the Gaspé District, many beautiful
quartz, and a great variety of cornelians, agates, copals, and jaspers
have been found, and traces of coal have also been observed.[152]

The north shore of the St. Lawrence, from thirty miles below Quebec
eastward, and along the coast of Labrador, is generally of the primitive
formations. Except in the marshes and swamps, rocks obtrude upon the
surface in all quarters; in many places, deep fissures of from six
inches to two feet wide are seen bearing witness to volcanic violence;
the Indians describe some of these rents as several miles long, and
forty or fifty deep; when covered with the thick underwood, they are, at
times, very dangerous to the traveler. These chasms are probably owing
to some great subterranean action; there is a manuscript in the Jesuits'
College at Quebec which records the occurrence of an earthquake on the
5th of February, 1663, at about half past 5 P.M., felt through the whole
extent of Canada: trees in the forests were torn up and dashed against
each other with inconceivable violence; mountains were raised from their
foundations and thrown into valleys, leaving awful chasms behind; from
the openings issued dense clouds of smoke, dust, and sand; many rivers
disappeared, others were diverted from their course, and the great St.
Lawrence became suddenly white as far down as the mouth of the Saguenay.
The first shock lasted for more than half an hour, but the greatest
violence was only for fifteen minutes. At Tadoussac, a shower of
volcanic ashes descended upon the rivers, agitating the waters like a
tempest. This tremendous earthquake extended simultaneously over
180,000 square miles of country, and lasted for nearly six months almost
without intermission.[153]

In the neighborhood of Quebec, a dark clay slate generally appears, and
forms the bed of the St. Lawrence as far as Lake Ontario, and even at
Niagara; bowlders and other large masses of rock, however, of various
kinds, occur in detached portions at many different places. The great
elevated ridge of broken country running toward the Ottawa River, at the
distance of from fifty to one hundred miles from the north shore of Lake
Ontario, and the course of the St. Lawrence, is rich in silver, lead,
copper, and iron. On the north shore of the Saguenay, the rugged
mountains abound in iron to such an extent as to influence the mariner's
compass. The iron mines of St. Maurice[154] have been long known, and
found abundantly productive of an admirable metal, inferior to none in
the world; it is remarkably pliant and malleable, and little subject to
oxydation. In 1667, Colbert sent M. de la Potardière, an experienced
mineralogist, to examine these mines; he reported the iron very
abundant, and of excellent quality, but it was not till 1737 that the
forges were established by the French: they failed to pay the expenses
of the speculation; the superintendent and fourteen clerks, however,
gained fortunes by the losses of their employers.

There is no doubt that immense mineral resources remain undiscovered
among the rocky solitudes of Lower Canada. Marble of excellent quality,
and endless variety of color, is found in different parts of the
country, and limestone is almost universal. Labrador produces a
beautiful and well-known spar of rich and brilliant tints, ultra-marine,
greenish yellow, red, and some of a fine pearly gray.

In Upper Canada, the country north of Lake Ontario is generally
characterized by a limestone subsoil resting on granite. The rocks about
Kingston are usually a very compact limestone, of a bluish-gray color,
having a slight silicious admixture, increasing as the depth increases,
with occasional intrusions of quartz or hornstone. The limestone strata
are horizontal, with the greatest dip when nearest to the elder rock on
which it rests; their thickness, like the depths of the soil, varies
from a few feet to a few inches: in these formations many minerals are
observed; genuine granite is seldom or never found.

West of Lake Ontario, the chasm at the Falls of Niagara shows the strata
of the country to be limestone, next slate, and lowest sandstone.
Limestone and sandstone compose the secondary formations of a large
portion of Canada, and of nearly all that vast extent of country in the
United States drained by the Mississippi. At Niagara the interposing
structure of slate is nearly forty feet thick, and fragile, like shale
crumbling away from under the limestone, thus strengthening the opinion
that there has been for many ages a continual retrocession of the Great
Falls. Around Lake St. Clair, masses of granite, mica slate, and quartz
are found in abundance. The level shores of Lake Huron offer little
geological variety; secondary limestone, filled with the usual reliquiæ,
is the general structure of the coast, but detached blocks of granite
and other primitive rocks are occasionally found: this district appears
poor in minerals. The waters of Lakes Huron, Michigan, and Superior have
evidently, at some remote period, formed one vast sheet, which probably
burst its bounds by a sudden action of nature, and subsided into the
present divisions, all lower than the former general level: the
separating ridges of these waters are but slightly elevated; great
masses of rock and huge bowlders of granite are found rolled at least
100 miles from their original situations, and immense alluvial beds of
fresh-water shells, apparently formed since the deluge, but when the
waters were still of a vast depth and extent, are found in the east of
Lake Huron.

Little or nothing is known of the dreary solitudes beyond Lake Superior;
enormous muddy ponds and marshes are succeeded by open, dry, sandy
plains; then forests of hemlock and spruce arise, again swamp, bog,
windfalls, and stagnant water succeed; in the course of many miles there
may not be one dry spot found for a resting-place. The cold is intense
in this desolate region; in winter spirits freeze into a consistency
like honey; and even in the height of summer the thermometer only shows
thirty-six degrees at sunrise. Part of the north and east shore of this
greatest of the lakes present old formations--sienite, stratified
greenstone, more or less chloritic, and alternating five times with vast
beds of granite--the general direction east, with a north or
perpendicular dip. Great quantities of the older shell limestone are
found strewn in rolled masses on the beach. Amygdaloid occupies also a
very large tract to the north, mingled with porphyries, conglomerates,
and various other substances. From Thunder Mountain westward, trappose
greenstone is the prevailing rock: it gives rise to some strange
pilastered precipices near Fort William. Copper[155] abounds in this
region to an extent, perhaps, unsurpassed any where in the world. At the
Coppermine River, three hundred miles from the Sault de St. Marie, this
metal, in a pure state, nearly covers the face of a serpentine rock, and
is also found within the stone in solid masses. Iron is abundant in many
parts of Upper Canada; at Charlotteville, eight miles from Lake Erie,
the metal produced is of a very fine quality. The Marmora Iron Works,
about thirty-two miles north of the Bay of Quinté, on the River Trent,
are situated on an extensive white rocky flat, apparently the bed of
some dried-up river; the ore is found on the surface, and is very rich,
yielding ninety-two per cent.: the necessary assistants, lime and fuel,
abound close at hand. Various other minerals have also been found there;
among the rest, small specimens of a metal like silver.

There are many strong mineral springs in different parts of Canada; the
most remarkable of these is the Burning Spring above Niagara; its waters
are black, hot and bubbling, and emit, during the summer, a gas that
burns with a pure bright flame; this sulphureted hydrogen is used to
light a neighboring mill. Salt springs are also numerous; gypsum is
obtained in large quantities, with pipe and potter's clay; yellow ocher
sometimes occurs; and there are many kinds of valuable building stones.
It is gathered from the Indians that there are incipient volcanoes in
several parts of these regions, particularly toward the Chippewa hunting

The soil of Lower Canada is generally fertile; about Quebec it is light
and sandy in some parts, in others it is a mixture of loam and clay.
Above the Richelieu Rapids, where the great valley of the St. Lawrence
begins to widen, the low lands consist of a light and loose dark earth,
with ten or twelve inches of depth, lying on a stratum of cold clay, all
apparently of alluvial formation. Along the banks of the Ottawa there is
a great extent of rich alluvial soil; each year develops large districts
of fertile land, before unknown. The soils of Upper Canada are various;
brown clay and loam, intermixed with marl, predominates, particularly in
the rich district between the St. Lawrence and the Ottawa: north of
Ontario it is more clayey and extremely fertile. A rich black mold
prevails in the district between Lakes Ontario and Erie. There is in
this upper country an almost total absence of stone or gravel for
building and other common purposes. So great is the fertility of the
soil in Canada, that fifty bushels of wheat an acre are frequently
produced, even where the stumps of trees still occupy a considerable
portion of the ground: near Toronto one hundred bushels of wheat have
been grown upon a single acre, and in some districts the land has
yielded rich crops of that grain for twenty successive years, without
being manured.

The quality of the soil in wild lands may be known by the timber growing
upon it. Hard-wood trees, those that shed their leaves during winter,
show the best indication, such as maple, bass-wood, elm, black walnut,
hickory, butternut, iron-wood, hemlock, and a giant species of nettle.
A mixture of beech is good, but where it stands alone the soil is
generally light. Oak is uncertain as an indication, being found on
various bottoms. Soft or evergreen wood, such as pine, fir, larch, and
others of the species, are considered decisive of a very light soil. The
larch or tamarack on wide, flat plains, indicates sand upon a substratum
of marly clay, which the French Canadians hold in high estimation. It
is, however, right to add, that some very respectable authorities
dispute that the nature of the timber can be fully relied on as a guide
to the value of the land. The variety of trees found in the Canadian
forest is astonishing, and it is supposed that many kinds still remain
unknown. Of all these, none is more beautiful and useful than the maple;
its brilliant foliage, changing with each season of the year, is the
richest ornament of the forest. The timber is valuable for many
purposes, and from the sap might be produced an immense quantity of
excellent sugar. A great deal is at present made, but, like all the
other resources of this magnificent country, it is very partially turned
to the use of man: the sap of the maple is valuable also for

There is a considerable variety of climate in Canada, from the
northeast, chilled by the winds of the Atlantic,[156] to the southwest,
five degrees lower, and approaching the center of the continent; the
neighborhood of ranges of bare and rugged mountains,[157] has also a
marked effect upon the temperature of different localities. However, in
all parts the winters are very severe, while the heat of summer is
little inferior to that of the tropics. But, on the whole, the clear
blue sky, unobscured by fog or mist, and the pure elastic air, bespeak
the salubrity of these provinces in all seasons.

In Lower Canada the extreme severity of the winter is, in a measure,
caused by the vicinity of the range of lofty and rugged mountains, as
well as by its more northern position. The fall of snow commences in
November, but seldom remains long on the ground till December; in that
month constantly successive falls of snow rapidly cover the whole
surface of the country. Toward the end of December the heavy clouds
disperse, and the rude storm is followed by a perfect calm; the air
becomes pure and frosty, and the skies of a clear and beautiful azure.
The River St. Lawrence[158] is frozen over every winter from Montreal to
the Richelieu Rapids, but from thence to Quebec only once in about five
years; at other times, however, enormous fields and masses of ice drift
up and down with the changing tides, increasing or diminishing with the
severity or mildness of the weather; where the Island of Orleans divides
the Great River into two branches, the northern channel is narrow and
less acted upon by tides; here these huge frozen masses are forced
together by the winds and waters, and form an enormous bridge from shore
to shore. The greatest degree of cold prevails toward the end of
January, for a few days occasionally so intense that the human frame can
scarcely endure exposure to it for any length of time. When winter has
set in nearly every bird disappears, and few wild animals are any longer
to be seen; some, like the bear, remain torpid, others change their
color to a snowy white, and are rarely observed. Rocks of the softer
kinds are often rent asunder, as if with the explosion of gunpowder, by
the irresistible expansive power of the frost.[159] Dogs become mad
from the severity of the cold, and polished iron or other metal, when
exposed in the air for a little time, _burns_ the hand at the touch as
if it were red hot.[160] During the still nights of intense frost the
woods send forth a creaking sound, like the noise of chopping with
thousands of hatchets. Sometimes a brief thaw occurs in the middle of
winter, when a very extraordinary effect, called by the Canadians _ver
glas_, is occasionally produced upon the bare trees: they are covered
with an incrustation of pure ice from the stem to the extremities of the
smallest branches; the slight frost of the night freezes the moisture
that covered the bark during the day; the branches become at last unable
to bear their icy burden, and when a strong wind arises, the destruction
among trees of all kinds is immense. When the sun shines upon the forest
covered with this brilliant incrustation, the effect is indescribably

The months of March and April are usually very hot, and the power of the
sun's rays is heightened by the reflection of the ice and snows. Toward
the end of April or the beginning of May, the dreary winter covering has
altogether disappeared; birds of various kinds return from their wintery
exile; the ice accumulated in the great lakes and streams that are
tributary to the St. Lawrence breaks up with a tremendous noise, and
rushes down in vast quantities toward the ocean, till again the tides of
the Gulf drive them back. Sometimes the Great River is blocked up from
shore to shore with these frozen masses; the contending currents force
them together with terrible violence, and pile them over each other in
various fantastic forms. The navigation of the river is not fairly
practicable till all these have disappeared, which is generally about
the 10th of May.

When the young summer fairly sets in, nothing can be more charming than
the climate--during the day bright and genial, with the air still pure
and clear; the transition from bare brown fields and woods to verdure
and rich green foliage is so rapid, that its progress is almost
perceptible. Spring has scarcely begun before summer usurps its place,
and the earth, awakened from nature's long, wintery sleep, gives forth
her increase with astonishing bounty. This delightful season is usually
ushered in by moderate rains, and a considerable rise in the meridian
heat; but the nights are still cool and refreshing. In June, July, and
August, the heat becomes great, and for some days intense; the roads and
rocks at noon are so hot as to be painful to the touch, and the direct
rays of the sun possess almost tropical power; but the night brings
reinvigorating coolness, and the breezes of the morning are fresh and
tempered as in our own favored land. September is usually a delightful
month, although at times oppressively sultry. The autumn or fall rivals
the spring in healthy and moderate warmth, and is the most agreeable of
the seasons. The night-frosts destroy the innumerable venomous flies
that have infested the air through the hot season, and, by their action
on the various foliage of the forest, bestow an inconceivable richness
of coloring to the landscape.

During the summer there is a great quantity of electric fluid in the
atmosphere, but storms of thunder and lightning are not of very frequent
occurrence. When they do take place, their violence is sometimes
tremendous, and serious damage often occurs. These outbursts, however,
usually produce a favorable effect upon the weather and temperature.

The most remarkable meteoric phenomenon that has occurred in Canada
since the country became inhabited by civilized man, was first seen in
October, 1785, and again in July, 1814. At noonday a pitchy darkness, of
a dismal and sinister character, completely obscured the light of the
sun, continuing for about ten minutes at a time, and being frequently
repeated during the afternoon. In the interval between each mysterious
eclipse dense masses of black clouds, streaked with yellow, drove
athwart the darkened sky, with fitful gusts of wind; thunder,
lightning, black rain, and showers of ashes added to the terrors of the
scene; and, when the sun appeared, its color was a bright red. The
Indians ascribe this wonderful phenomenon to a vast volcano in the
unknown regions of Labrador. The testimony of M. Gagnon gives
corroboration to this idea. In December, 1791, when at St. Paul's Bay,
in the Saguenay country, he saw the flames of an immense volcano,
mingled with black smoke, rising to a great height in the air. Several
violent shocks, as of an earthquake, accompanied this strange

The prevailing winds of Lower Canada are the northeast, northwest, and
southwest, and these exercise considerable influence on the temperature
of the atmosphere and the state of the weather. The southwest wind, the
most prevalent, is generally moderate, accompanied by clear, bright
skies; the northeast and east wind bring rain in summer, and snow in
winter, from the dreary regions of Labrador; and the northwest blast is
keen and dry, from its passage over the vast frozen solitudes that lie
between the Rocky Mountains[161] and Hudson's Bay. Winds from the north,
south, or west are seldom felt: the currents of the neighboring air are
often affected by the direction of the tidal streams, which act as far
as 400 miles from the mouth of the Great River.

The effect of a long continuance of snow upon the earth is favorable to
vegetation; were the surface exposed to the intense severity of wintery
frosts, unprotected by this ample covering, the ground could not regain
a proper degree of heat, even under a Canadian sun, before the autumn
frosts had again chilled the energies of nature. The natural heat of the
earth is about 42°; the surface waters freeze at 32°, and thus present a
non-conducting incrustation to the keen atmosphere; then the snow
becomes a warm garment till the April sun softens the air above; the
latent heat of the earth begins to be developed; the snow melts, and
penetrates the ground through every pore, rendering friable the stiffest
soil. For a month or more before the visible termination of the
Canadian winter, vegetation is in active progress on the surface of the
earth, even under snow several feet thick.

In Upper Canada the climate does not present such extremes of heat and
cold as in the Lower Province. In the Newcastle District, between
latitude 44° and 45°, the winter is little more severe than in England,
and the warmth of summer is tempered by a cool and refreshing southwest
breeze, which blows throughout the day from over the waters of the great
lakes. In spring and autumn the southwest wind brings with it frequent
rains; the northwest wind prevails in winter, and is dry, cold, and
elastic; the south-eastern breezes are generally accompanied by thaw and
rain: from the west, south, or north, the wind rarely blows. The most
sudden changes of weather consequent upon varying winds are observed
from the northwest, when the air becomes pure and cool; thunder storms
generally clear away with this wind: the heaviest falls of snow, and the
most continued rains, come with the eastern breezes.

The great lakes are never frozen in their centers, but a strong border
of thick ice extends for some distance from the shore: in severe
weather, a beautiful evaporation in various fantastic shapes ascends
from the vast surfaces of these inland seas, forming cloudy columns and
pyramids to a great height in the air: this is caused by the water being
of a higher temperature than the atmosphere above. The chain of shallow
lakes from Lake Simco toward the midland district are rarely frozen over
more than an inch in thickness till about Christmas, and are free from
ice again by the end of March. The earth in Upper Canada is seldom froze
more than twelve or eighteen inches deep, and the general covering of
the snow is about a foot and a half in thickness.

In Canada the Indian summer is perhaps the most delightful period of the
year. During most of November the weather is mild and serene; a soft,
dry haze pervades the air, thickening toward the horizon; in the
evenings the sun sets in a rich crimson flush, and the temperature is
mild and genial: the birds avail themselves of the Indian summer for
their migration. A phenomenon called the "tertian intervals" has excited
much interest, and is still unexplained: at the end of the third day
the greatest intensity of frost is always remittent, and succeeded by
several days of mild weather. The climate is so dry that metals rarely
are rusted by exposure to the air. This absence of humidity prevents the
extremes of heat and cold from being so powerful here in their effect
upon the sensations of the human frame as in other countries.

The Aurora Borealis, or northern lights,[162] appear with great
brilliancy in the clear Canadian sky, especially during the winter
nights. Starting from behind the distant horizon, they race up through
the vault of heaven, spreading over all space one moment, shrinking to a
quivering streak the next, shooting out again where least expected, then
vanishing into darkness deeper than before; now they seem like vast
floating banners of variegated flame, then as crescents, again as
majestic columns of light, ever changing in form and color. It is said
that a rustling sound like that of silk accompanies this beautiful

The climate of Canada has undergone a slight change since the discovery
of the country; especially from the year 1818, an amelioration has been
perceptible, partly owing to the motion of the magnetic poles, and
partly to the gradual cultivation and clearing of the country. The
winters are somewhat shorter and milder, and less snow falls than of
old; the summers are also hotter.[163] The felling of the forests, the
draining of the morasses, partial though it may still be, together with
the increasing population, have naturally some effect. The thick
foliage, which before interposed its shade between the sun and the
earth, intercepting the genial warmth from the lower atmosphere, has now
been removed in many extensive tracts of country: the cultivated soil
imbibes the heat, and returns it to the surrounding air in warm and
humid vapors. The exhalations arising from a much increased amount of
animal life, together with the burning of so many combustibles, are not
altogether without their influence in softening the severity of the

Canada abounds in an immense and beautiful variety of trees[165] and
shrubs. Among the timber trees, the oak, pine, fir, elm, ash, birch,
walnut, beech, maple, chestnut, cedar, and aspen, are the principal. Of
fruit-trees and shrubs there are walnut, chestnut, apple, pear, cherry,
plum, elder, vines,[166] hazel, hickory, sumach, juniper, hornbeam,
thorn, laurel, whortleberry, cranberry, gooseberry, raspberry,
blackberry, blueberry, sloe, and others; strawberries of an excellent
flavor are luxuriantly scattered over every part of the country.
Innumerable varieties of useful and beautiful herbs and grasses enrich
the forests, whose virtues and peculiarities are as yet but little known
to Europeans.[167] In many places, pine-trees grow to the height of 120
feet and upward, and are from nine to ten feet in circumference.[170]
Of this and of the fir species there are many varieties, some of them
valuable from their production of pitch, tar, and turpentine. The
American oak[171] is quicker in its growth and less durable than that of
England; one species, however, called the live oak, grown in the warmer
parts of the continent, is said to be equal, if not superior, to any in
Europe for ship-building. The white oak is the best found in the
Canadian settlements, and is in high repute. Another description is
called the scrubby oak--it resembles the British gnarled oak, and is
remarkably hard and durable. The birch[173] tribe is very numerous: the
bark is much used by the Indians in making canoes,[174] baskets, and
roofings; the wood is of a useful quality, and the sap, when extracted
in the spring, produces by fermentation a pleasant but weak wine. The
maple[175] is one of the most variable and beautiful of all the forest
trees, and is adopted as the emblem of Canadian nationality.

Two plants, formerly of great importance in these counties, are now
almost extirpated, or little noticed as articles of commerce--ginseng[176]
and capillaire. The first was found in great abundance by the French in
their earlier settlement of the colony, and large quantities were exported
to Europe, from whence it was forwarded to China. The high value it then
possessed in that distant market induced the Canadians to collect the roots
prematurely; and the Indians also gathered them wherever they could be
found; consequently, this useful production was soon exhausted, and is now
rarely seen. The capillaire[177] is now either become rare or neglected
for other objects; a small quantity is, however, still exported. In the
woods there is a vast variety of wild plants and flowers, many of them very
beautiful. The sweet garlic especially deserves notice: two large
pale-green leaves arise from the root; between them stands the delicate
stem, about a foot in height, bearing a cluster of graceful flowers,
resembling blue-bells in shape and color. The wild turnip is also very
beautiful. There are, besides, many valuable herbs and roots, which the
Indians use for various purposes. The reindeer moss[178] often serves
for support and refreshment to the exhausted hunter; when boiled down
into a liquid, it is very nourishing; and an herb called Indian tea
produces a pleasant and wholesome draught, with a rich aromatic flavor.
Wild oats and rice[179] are found in some of the marshy lands. The soil
and climate are also favorable to the production of hops and a mild
tobacco, much esteemed for the manufacture of snuff. Hemp[180] and flax
are both indigenous in America. Father Hennepin, in the seventeenth
century, found the former growing wild in the country of the Illinois;
and Sir Alexander Mackenzie, in his travels to the western coast, met
with flax in the interior, where no European was ever known to have been
before. The Indian hemp[181] is seen in abundance upon the Canadian
soil, particularly in light and sandy places; the bark is so strong that
the natives use it for bow-strings; the pod bears a substance that
rivals down in softness and elasticity; the culture is easy; the root,
penetrating deep into the earth, survives the frosts of winter, and
shoots out fresh stalks every spring. When five or six years old it
attains the greatest perfection. It may be added that in these favored
provinces all European plants, fruits, vegetables, grain,[182] legumes,
and every other production of the earth required for the subsistence or
luxury of man, yield their increase even more abundantly than in the old

The animals originally belonging to America appear to be of an inferior
race--neither so robust, fierce, or numerous as those of the other
continents: some are peculiar to the New World; but there is reason to
suppose that several species have become utterly extinct, and the spread
of cultivation, and increase of the human race rapidly extirpate many of
those that still remain. America gives birth to no creature of equal
bulk to the elephant and rhinoceros, or of equal strength and ferocity
to the lion and tiger. The particular qualities in the climate, stinting
the growth and enfeebling the spirit of the native animals, have also
proved injurious to such as have been transported to the Canadas by
their present European inhabitants. The soil, as well as temperature, of
the country seems to be rather unfavorable to the development of
strength and perfection in the animal creation.[183] The general quality
of the natural grasses covering those boundless pastures is not good or
sufficiently nutritious.[184]

The native animals of Canada are the buffalo, bison, and musk bull,
belonging to the ox kind. The buffalo is still found in herds of
immense numbers upon the prairies of the remote western country, where
they have wandered from the hated neighborhood of civilized man: the
skin[185] is invaluable to the Canadians as a protection from the keen
wintery air, and is abundantly supplied to them by the hunters of the
Hudson's Bay Company.[186] This animal is about the size of an ox, with
the head disproportionably large; he is of a lighter color, less
ferocious aspect, and inferior strength to those of the Old World. Both
the bison and musk ox are varieties of the domestic cow, with a covering
of shaggy hair; they possess considerable strength and activity. There
are different descriptions of deer: the black and gray moose or elk, the
caribou or reindeer,[187] the stag[188] and fallow deer.[189] The moose
deer[190] is the largest wild animal of the continent; it is often seen
upward of ten feet high, and weighing twelve hundred weight; though
savage in aspect, the creature is generally timid and inoffensive even
when attacked by the hunter, and, like the sheep, may be easily
domesticated: the flesh and skin are both of some value.

The black and brown bear[191] is found in various parts of America, but
chiefly in the northwest: some few are seen in the forests to the north
of Quebec. This animal chooses for his lurking-place the hollow trunk of
an old tree, which he prepares with sticks and branches, and a coating
of warm moss; on the approach of the cold season he retires to his lair,
and sleeps through the long winter till the return of spring enables him
again to seek his prey. The bear is rather shy than fierce, but very
powerful and dangerous when driven to extremities; he displays a strong
degree of instinct, and is very dexterous and cunning in procuring food:
the flesh is considered a delicacy, and the skin highly prized for
beauty and warmth. Foxes[192] are numerous; they are of various colors
and very cunning. Hares[193] are abundant, and turn white in winter like
those of Norway. The wolverine or carcajou is called by the hunters
beaver-eater, and somewhat resembles a badger; the skin is soft and
handsome. A species of porcupine or urchin is found to the northward,
and supplies the Indians with quills about four inches long, which, when
dyed, are worked into showy ornaments. Squirrels[194] and various other
small quadrupeds with fine furs are abundant in the forests. The animals
of the cat kind are the cougar or American lion, the loup-cervier, the
catamount, and the manguay or lynx.

Beavers[195] are numerous in North America; these amphibious animals are
about two feet nine inches in length, with very short fore feet and
divided toes, while the hinder are membranous, and adapted for swimming;
the body is covered with a soft, glossy, and valuable fur; the tail is
oval, scaly, destitute of hair, and about a foot long. These industrious
creatures dam up considerable streams, and construct dwellings of many
compartments, to protect them from the rigor of the climate, as well as
from their numerous enemies; their winter food, consisting of poplar
logs, pieces of willows, alder, and fragments of other trees, is
collected in autumn, and sunk in the water near the habitation. The
beaver exhibits an extraordinary degree of instinct, and may be easily
tamed; when caught or surprised by the approach of an enemy, it gives
warning to its companions by striking the water with the flat of its
tail. The musk rat and otter resemble the beaver in some of their
habits, but are inferior in ingenuity, and of less value to the hunter.

The walrus has now disappeared from the frequented waters of the Gulf of
St. Lawrence, but is still found on the northern coasts of Labrador; in
shape he somewhat resembles the seal, but is of much greater size,
sometimes weighing 4000 pounds; when protecting their young, or when
wounded, they are dangerous from their immense tusks; when out of the
water, however, they are very helpless.

Nearly all these wild animals are pursued by the Indians, and the
hunters of the Hudson's Bay Company,[196] for their skins; they are
consequently growing rarer, and their haunts become more remote each
succeeding year: probably, at no distant time, they will be altogether

The birds of Canada differ little from those of the same names in
Europe, but the severe climate is generally uncongenial to them. There
are eagles, vultures, hawks, falcons, kites, owls, ravens, crows, rooks,
jays, magpies, daws, cuckoos, woodpeckers, hoopers, creepers,
humming-birds, thrushes, blackbirds, linnets, finches, sparrows,
fly-catchers, pigeons, turkeys, ducks, geese, swans, grouse, ptarmigans,
snipes, quails, and many others. The plumage of the American birds is
very brilliant; but the sweet voices that fill the European woods with
melody are never heard. Many of the birds of Lower Canada are migratory;
the water-fowl seek the cooler north during the heat of summer, and
other species fly to the south to shun the wintery frosts. In the milder
latitudes of Upper Canada, birds are more numerous. They are known by
the same names as those of corresponding species in England, but differ
from them to some extent in plumage and character.

In Lower Canada the reptiles are few and innocuous, and even these are
not met with in the cultivated parts of the country. In the Upper
Province, however, they are more numerous; some species are very
dangerous, others harmless and exquisitely beautiful. Two kinds of
rattlesnakes[197] are found here: one of a deep brown and yellow color,
and seldom more than thirty inches in length; it frequents marshes and
low meadows, and is very dangerous to cattle, often fastening its fangs
upon their lips while grazing. The other is a bright greenish yellow
clouded with brown, and twice the size of the former. These reptiles are
thicker in proportion to their length than any others; the rattle is at
the end of the tail, and consists of a number of dry, horny shells
inclosed within each other. When wounded or enraged, the skin of the
rattlesnake assumes a variety of beautiful colors; the flesh is white as
that of the most delicate fish, and is esteemed a great luxury by the
Indians. Cold weather weakens or destroys their poisonous qualities. In
the spring, when they issue from their place of winter concealment, they
are harmless till they have got to water, and at that time emit a
sickening smell so as to injure those who hunt them. In some of the
remoter districts they are still numerous, but in the long-settled parts
of the country they are now rarely or never seen.

Several varieties of lizards and frogs abound; the latter make an
astonishing noise in marshy places during the summer evening by their
harsh croaking. The land crab is found on the northern shore of Lake
Erie. A small tortoise, called a terrapin,[198] is taken in some rivers,
creeks, and swampy grounds, and is used as an article of food. Seals
have been occasionally seen on the islands in Lake Ontario.

Insects[199] are very numerous and various, some of them both
troublesome and mischievous: locusts or grasshoppers have been known to
cause great destruction to the vegetable world. Musquitoes and
sand-flies infest the woods, and the neighborhood of water, in
incredible numbers, during the hot weather. There are many moths and
butterflies resembling those seen in England. The beautiful fire-fly is
very common in Canada, their phosphorescent light shining with wonderful
brightness through the shady forests in the summer nights.

The lakes and rivers of Upper Canada abound in splendid fish of almost
every variety known in England, and others peculiar to the country:
sturgeon of 100 lbs. weight are frequently taken, and a giant species of
pike, called the maskenongi, of more than 60 lbs. The trout of the upper
lakes almost rivals the sturgeon in size, but not in flavor. The
delicious white-fish, somewhat resembling a shad, is very plentiful, as
is also the black bass, which is highly prized. A fresh-water herring
abounds in great shoals, but is inferior in delicacy to the
corresponding species of the salt seas. Salmon are numerous in Lake
Ontario, but above the Falls of Niagara they are never seen.


[Footnote 151: "The neighborhood of Quebec, as well as Canada in
general, is much characterized by bowlders, and the size and position of
some of them is very striking. There are two crowning the height which
overlooks the domain farm at Beauport, whose collective weight is little
short, by computation, of forty tons. The Heights of Abraham also are,
or rather were, crowded with them; and it should never be forgotten that
it was upon one of these hoary symbols, the debâcles of the deluge, as
they are supposed to be, that the immortal and mortal parts of two
heroes separated from each other. It has often occurred to us, that one
of the most suitable monuments to the memory of Wolfe and Montcalm might
have been erected with these masses, in the form of a pyramid or pile of
shot, instead of burying them, as in many instances has been done, in
order to clear the ground."--_Picture of Quebec_, p. 456.]

[Footnote 152: Gray says, in 1809, that "no coal has ever yet been found
in Canada, probably because it has never been thought worth searching
after. It is supposed that coal exists in the neighborhood of Quebec; at
any rate, there can be no doubt that it exists in great abundance in the
island of Cape Breton, which may one day become the Newcastle of
Canada."--P. 287.

"No idea can be formed of the importance of the American coal seams
until we reflect on the prodigious area over which they are continuous.
The elliptical area occupied by the Pittsburg seam is 225 miles in its
largest diameter, while its maximum breadth is about 100 miles, its
superficial extent being about 14,000 square miles.

"The Apalachian coal-field extends for a distance of 720 miles from
northeast to southwest, its greatest width being about 180 miles.

"The Illinois coal-field is not much inferior in dimensions to the whole
of England."--Lyell's _America_, vol. ii., p. 31.

"It was the first time I had seen the true coal in America, and I was
much struck with its surprising analogy in mineral and fossil characters
to that of Europe; ... the whole series resting on a coarse grit and
conglomerate, containing quartz pebbles, very like our millstone grit,
and often called by the Americans, as well as the English miners, the
'Farewell Rock,' because, when they have reached it in their borings,
they take leave of all valuable fuel."--_Ibid._, vol. i., p. 61.]

[Footnote 153: See Appendix, No. XXI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 154: Professor Kalm visited the iron-works of St. Maurice in
1748, eleven or twelve years after their first establishment. "The
iron-work, which is the only one in the country, lies three miles to the
west of Trois Rivières. Here are two great forges, besides two lesser
ones to each of the great ones, and under the same roof with them. The
bellows were made of wood, and every thing else as in the Swedish
forges. The ore is got two and a half miles from the iron-works, and is
carried thither on sledges. It is a kind of moor-ore (Tophus Tubalcaini:
_Linn. Syst. Nat._, lib. iii., p. 187, note 5), which lies in veins
within six inches or a foot from the surface of the ground. Each vein is
from six to eighteen inches deep, and below it is a white sand. The
veins are surrounded with this sand on both sides, and covered at the
top with a thin mold. The ore is pretty rich, and lies in loose lumps in
the veins of the size of two fists, though there are a few which are
near eighteen inches thick. These lumps are full of holes which are
filled with ocher. The ore is so soft that it may be crushed between the
fingers. They make use of a gray limestone, which is broke in the
neighborhood, for promoting the fusibility of the ore; to that purpose
they likewise employ a clay marl, which is found near this place.
Charcoals are to be had in great abundance here, because the country
round this place is covered with wood which has never been stirred. The
charcoals from evergreen trees, that is, from the fir kind, are best for
the forge, but those of deciduous trees are best for the smelting-oven.
The iron which is here made was to me described as soft, pliable, and
tough, and is said to have the quality of not being attacked by rust so
easily as other iron. This iron-work was first founded in 1737 by
private persons, who afterward ceded it to the king; they cast cannon
and mortars here of different sizes, iron stoves, which are in use all
over Canada, kettles, &c. They have likewise tried to make steel here,
but can not bring it to any great perfection, because they are
unacquainted with the best method of preparing it. Here are many
officers and overseers, who have very good houses built on purpose for
them. It is agreed on all hands that the resources of the iron-work do
not pay the expenses which the king must every year be at in maintaining
it. They lay the fault on the bad state of population, and say that the
few inhabitants in the country have enough to do with agriculture, and
that it therefore costs great trouble and large sums to get a sufficient
number of workmen. But, however plausible this may appear, yet it is
surprising that the king should be a loser in carrying on this work, for
the ore is easily broken, being near the iron-work, and very fusible.
The iron is good; and this is, moreover, the only iron-work in the
country, from which every body must supply himself with tools, and what
other iron he wants. But the officers and servants belonging to the
iron-work appear to be in very affluent circumstances. A river runs down
from the iron-work into the River St. Lawrence, by which all the iron
can be sent in boats throughout the country at a low rate."--Kalin in
Pinkerton, vol. xiii., p. 631.

"M. Dantic, after a number of experiments to class the different kinds
of iron, discovered that the iron of Styria was the best, and that the
iron of North America, of Danemara in Sweden, of Spain, Bayonne,
Roussillon, Foix, Berri, Thierache in Sweden, the communes of France,
and Siberia, was the next class."--Abbé Raynal, vol. iii., p. 268.

Weld and Heriot mention that the bank of iron ore at the forges of St.
Maurice was nearly exhausted in their time; new veins, however, have
been since discovered.

Charlevoix says, in 1720: "Il est certain que ces mines de fer, que
l'oeil perçant de M. Colbert et la vigilance de M. Talon avoit fait
découvrir, après avoir presqú entièrement disparu pendant plus de
soixante dix ans, viennent d'être retrouvées par les soins de ceux qui
occupent aujourd'hui leur place."--Charlevoix, tom. ii., p. 166.]

[Footnote 155: Henry and others speak of a rock of pure copper, from
which the former out off 100 lbs. weight. W. Schoolcraft examined the
remainder of the mass in 1820, and found it of irregular shape; in its
greatest length three feet eight inches, greatest breadth three feet
four inches, making about eleven cubic feet, and containing, of metallic
matter, about 2200 lbs.; but there were many marks of chisels and axes
upon it, as if a great deal had been carried off. The surface of the
block, unlike most metals which have suffered a long exposure to the
atmosphere, presents a metallic brilliancy.--Martin's _History of
Canada_, p. 175.

Weld mentions having seen in the possession of a gentleman at Niagara a
lump of copper, of several ounces weight, apparently as pure as if it
had passed through the fire, which had been struck off with a chisel
from a piece equally pure, growing on one of the islands in Lake
Superior. Rich veins of copper are visible in almost all the rocks on
these islands near the shore; and copper ore, resembling copperas, is
likewise found in deep beds near the water.--Weld, p. 346.

In Charlevoix's time (1720), "on trouvoit sur les bords du Lac Supérieur
et autour de certains isles, de grosses pièces de cuivre qui sont
l'objet de cette superstition des sauvages; ils les regardent avec
vénération comme un présent des Dieux qui habitent sous les eaux; ils en
ramassent les plus petits fragmens et les conservent avec soin, mais ils
n'en font aucune usage. J'ai connu un de nos frères lequel étoit orfévre
de son métier, et qui, pendant qu'il étoit dans la mission du Sault
Sainte Marie, en étoit allé chercher là, et en avoit fait des
chandeliers, des croix, et des encensoirs, car ce cuivre est souvent
presque tout pur."--Tom. v., p. 415.

Kalm says that the copper found is so pure that it does not require
melting over again, but is fit for working immediately.--Kalm in
Pinkerton, vol. xiii., p. 691 (1748).

"Before saying good-by to Lake Superior, let me add, that since the date
of my visit, the barren rocks which we passed have become an object of
intense interest, promising to rival, in point of mineral wealth, the
Altai chain and the Uralian Mountains. Iron had long been known to
abound on the northern shore, two mines having been at one time worked
and abandoned, chiefly on account of temporary obstacles, which the
gradual advance of agriculture and civilization was sure to remove; and,
more recently, the southern shore, though of a much less favorable
character in that respect, was found to possess rich veins of copper and
silver. Under these circumstances, various enterprising persons in
Canada have prosecuted investigations which appear to have
satisfactorily proved that, in addition to their iron, the forbidding
wastes of the northern shore contain inexhaustible treasures, both of
the precious and of the useful metals, of gold and of silver, of copper
and tin, and already have associations been formed to reap the teeming
harvest."--Sir G. Simpson's _Journey round the World_, vol. i., p. 35

The following extract is from a Quebec newspaper, bearing date 25th
June, 1848:

"THE COPPER REGION: SINGULAR DISCOVERY.--A correspondent of the Buffalo
Express, writing under date June 14, from Ontonagon, Lake Superior,

"'Mr. Knapp, of the Vulcan Mining Company, has lately made some very
singular discoveries here in working one of the veins which he lately
found. He worked into an old cave which has been excavated centuries
ago. This led them to look for other works of the same sort, and they
have found a number of sinks in the earth which they have traced a long
distance. By digging into those sinks they find them to have been made
by the hand of man. It appears that the ancient miners went on a
different principle from what they do at the present time. The greatest
depth yet found in these holes is thirty feet: after getting down to a
certain depth, they drifted along the vein, making an open cut. These
cuts have been filled nearly to a level by the accumulation of soil; and
we find trees of the largest growth standing in this gutter, and also
find that trees of a very large growth have grown up and died, and
decayed many years since; in the same places there are now standing
trees of over three hundred years' growth. Last week they dug down into
a new place, and about twelve feet below the surface found a mass of
copper that will weigh from eight to ten tons. This mass was buried in
ashes, and it appears they could not handle it, and had no means of
cutting it, and probably built fire to melt or separate the rock from
it, which might be done by heating, and then dashing on cold water. This
piece of copper is as pure and clean as a new cent; the upper surface
has been pounded clear and smooth. It appears that this mass of copper
was taken from the bottom of a shaft, at the depth of about thirty feet.
In sinking this shaft from where the mass now lies, they followed the
course of the vein, which pitches considerably: this enabled them to
raise it as far as the hole came up with a slant. At the bottom of a
shaft they found skids of black oak, from eight to twelve inches in
diameter: these sticks were charred through, as if burned: they found
large wooden wedges in the same situation. In this shaft they found a
miner's gad and a narrow chisel made of copper. I do not know whether
these copper tools are tempered or not, but their make displays good
workmanship. They have taken out more than a ton of cobble-stones, which
have been used as mallets. These stones were nearly round, with a score
cut around the tenter, and look as if this score was cut for the purpose
of putting a withe round for a handle. The Chippewa Indians all say that
this work was never done by Indians. This discovery will lead to a new
method of finding veins in this country, and may be of great benefit to
some. I suppose they will keep finding new wonders for some time yet, as
it is but a short time since they first found the old mine. There is
copper here in abundance, and I think people will begin to dig it in a
few years. Mr. Knapp has found considerable silver during the past

[Footnote 156: Acosta is the first philosopher who endeavored to account
for the different degrees of heat in the Old and New Continents by the
agency of the winds which blow in each, (_Hist. Moral._, lib. ii. and
iii.) M. de Buffon adopted the same theory, and illustrated it with many
new observations. "The prevailing winds, both in Upper and Lower Canada,
are the northeast, northwest, and southwest, which all have a
considerable influence on the temperature of the atmosphere and the
state of the weather. The southwest wind is the most prevalent, but it
is generally moderate, and accompanied by clear skies; and the northeast
and easterly winds usually bring with them continued rain in summer, and
snow in winter; the northwest is remarkable for its dryness and
elasticity, and, from its gathering an intense degree of frigor as it
sweeps over the frozen plains and ice-bound hills in that quarter of the
continent, invariably brings with it a perceptible degree of cold. Winds
from due north, south, or west are not frequent. At Quebec, the
direction of the wind often changes with the tide, which is felt for
nearly sixty miles higher up the stream of the St. Lawrence."--Bonchette,
vol. i., p. 343.

"The northwest wind is uncommonly dry, and brings with it fresh
animation and vigor to every living thing. Although this wind is so very
piercing in winter, yet the people never complain so much of cold as
when the northeast wind blows. The northeast wind is also cold, but it
renders the air raw and damp. That from the southeast is damp, but warm.
Rain or snow usually falls when the wind comes from any point toward the
east. The northwest wind, from coming over such an immense tract of
land, must necessarily be dry; and, coming from regions eternally
covered with mounds of snow and ice, it must also be cold. The northeast
wind, from traversing the frozen seas, must be cold likewise; but, from
passing over such a large portion of the watery main afterward, it
brings damp and moisture with it. All those from the northeast are damp,
and loaded with vapors from the same cause. Southerly winds, from
crossing the warm regions between the tropics, are attended with heats;
and the southwest wind, from passing, like the northwest, over a great
extent of land, is dry at the same time."--Weld's _Travels in America_,
4th ed., p. 184.

Kalm says, p. 748, that he was assured that "the northeast wind, when it
is very violent in winter, pierces through walls of a moderate
thickness, so that the whole wall on the inside of the house is covered
with snow, or a thick hoar frost. The wind damages severely the houses
that are built of stone, so that the owners are frequently obliged to
repair them on the northeast side. In summer the north wind is generally
attended with rain."--Kalm in Pinkerton, vol. xiii., p. 651.]

[Footnote 157: "Many of these mountains are very high. During my stay in
Canada, I asked many people who have traveled much in North America
whether they ever met with mountains so high that the snow never melts
on them in summer, to which they always answered in the negative. They
say that the snow sometimes stays on the highest, viz., on some of those
between Canada and the English colonies during a part of the summer, but
that it melts as soon as the great heat begins."--Kalm, p. 671.]

[Footnote 158: "It is worthy of remark, and not a little surprising,
that so large a river as the St. Lawrence, in latitude 47°, should be
shut up with ice as soon, and continue as long shut up, as the
comparatively small river, the Neva, in latitude 60°."--Gray's _Canada_,
p. 320.]

[Footnote 159: "The following curious experiments were made some years
ago at Quebec, by Major Williams, of the Artillery. Iron shells of
different sizes, from the thirteen-inch shell to the cohorn of four
inches diameter, were nearly filled with water, and an iron plug was
driven in at the fuse-hole by a sledge-hammer. It was found, however,
that the plug could never be driven so firmly into the fuse-hole as to
resist the expanding ice, which pushed it out with great force and
velocity, and a bolt or cylinder of ice immediately shot up from the
hole; but when a plug was used that had springs which would expand and
lay hold of the inside of the cavity, so that it could not possibly be
pushed out, the force of expansion split the shell. The amazing force of
expansion is also shown from the distance to which these iron plugs are
thrown out of the fuse-hole. A plug of two pounds and a half weight was
thrown no less than 415 feet from the shell; the fuse axis was at an
angle of 45°; the thermometer showed 51° below the freezing point. Here
you see ice and gunpowder performing the same operations. That similar
effects should proceed from such dissimilar causes is very
extraordinary."--Gray's _Canada_, p. 309.]

[Footnote 160: See Appendix, No. XXII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 161: "These mountains were known to the French missionaries by
the name of Montagnes des Pierres Brillantes."--Chateaubriand.]

[Footnote 162: See Appendix, No. XXIII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 163: See Appendix, No. XXIV. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 164: See Appendix, No. XXV. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 165: "In Europe, in Asia, in Africa, and even in South
America, the primeval trees, however much their magnitude may arrest
admiration, do not grow in the promiscuous style that prevails in the
general character of the North American woods. Many varieties of the
pine, intermingled with birch, maple, beech, oak, and numerous other
tribes, branch luxuriantly over the banks of lakes and rivers, extend in
stately grandeur along the plains, and stretch proudly up to the very
summits of the mountains. It is impossible to exaggerate the autumnal
beauty of these forests; nothing under heaven can be compared to its
effulgent grandeur. Two or three frosty nights in the decline of autumn
transform the boundless verdure of a whole empire into every possible
tint of brilliant scarlet, rich violet, every shade of blue and brown,
vivid crimson, and glittering yellow. The stern, inexorable fir tribes
alone maintain their eternal somber green. All others, in mountains or
in villages, burst into the most glorious vegetable beauty, and exhibit
the most splendid and most enchanting panorama on earth."--M'Gregor, p.
79, 80.

Mr. Weld says, "The varied hues of the trees at this season of the year
(autumn) can hardly be imagined by those who never have had an
opportunity of observing them; and, indeed, as others have often
remarked before, were a painter to attempt to color a picture from them,
it would be condemned in Europe as totally different from any thing that
ever existed in nature."--Weld, p. 510.

"I can only compare the brightness of the faded leaves, scarlet, purple,
and yellow, to that of tulips."--Lyell's _America_, vol. i., p. 107.]

[Footnote 166: See Appendix, No. XXVI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 167: "One of the most striking features in the vegetation of
Canada is the number of species belonging to the _genera_ Solidago,
Aster, Quercus, and Pinus. It is also distinguished for the many plants
contained in the Orders, or natural families--Grossulaceæ, Onograceæ,
Hypericaceæ, Aceraceæ, Betulaceæ, Juglandaceæ, and Vacciniaceæ; and for
the presence of the peculiar families--Podophyllæ, Sarraceniaceæ, and
Hydrophyllaceæ. There is, on the contrary, the climate being considered,
a remarkable paucity of Cruciferæ and Umbelliferæ, and, what is most
extraordinary, a total absence of the genus Erica (heath),[168] which
covers so many thousands of acres in corresponding latitudes in Europe.
Mrs. Butler mentions, in her Journal, 'that some poor Scotch peasants,
about to emigrate to Canada, took away with them some roots of the
"bonny blooming heather," in hopes of making this beloved adorner of
their native mountains the cheerer of their exile. The heather, however,
refused to grow in the Canadian soil. The person who told me this said
that the circumstance had been related to him by Sir Walter Scott, whose
sympathy with the disappointment of these poor children of the romantic
heather-land betrayed itself even in tears.'

"Canada is not rich in roses; only three species occur throughout the
two provinces. Among the Ribes and the Ericaceæ, however, are found many
of the most beautiful ornaments of the English garden: Andromedas,
Rhododendrons, Azaleas, and Kalmias belong to the latter order. The
Azalea was thus described by one of the earlier European botanical
travelers. Professor Kalm[169] (in 1748): 'the Mayflowers, as the Swedes
call them, were plentiful in the woods wherever I went to-day,
especially on a dry soil, or one that is somewhat moist. The Swedes have
given them this name because they are in full blossom in May. Some of
the Swedes and the Dutch call them "Pinxter Bloem" (Whitsunday flowers),
as they are in blossom about Whitsuntide. The English call them wild
honeysuckles, and at a distance they really have a resemblance to the
honeysuckle or lonicera. Dr. Linnæus and other botanists call it an
Azalea (Azalea Nudiflora, _Linn. Spec. Plant._, p. 214.) Its flowers
were now open, and added a new ornament to the woods, being little
inferior to the flowers of the honey-suckle and hedysarum. They sit in a
circle round the stem's extremity, and have either a dark red or lively
red color; but by standing some time, the sun bleaches them, and at last
they get a whitish hue. The height of the bush is not always alike. Some
were as tall as a full-grown man, and taller; others were but low, and
some were not above a palm from the ground; yet they were all full of
flowers. They have some smell, but I can not say it is very pleasant.
However, the beauty of the color entitles them to a place in every
flower garden.'"--_Travels in North America_, by Professor Kalm, in
Pinkerton, vol. xiii., p. 557.]

[Footnote 168: Seven hours' journey above the sources of the Bow River,
Sir George Simpson mentions meeting with "an unexpected reminiscence of
my own native hills, in the shape of a plant which appeared to me to be
the very heather of the mountains of Scotland; and I might well regard
the reminiscence as unexpected, inasmuch as in all my wanderings, of
more than twenty years, I had never found any thing of the kind in North
America. As I took a considerable degree of interest in the question of
the supposed identity, I carried away two specimens, which, however,
proved, on a minute comparison, to differ from the genuine staple of the
brown heaths of the 'Land o' Cakes.'"--Vol. i., p. 120.

"We missed, also, the small 'crimson-tipped daisy' on the green lawns,
and were told that they have been often cultivated with care, but are
found to wither when exposed to the dry air and bright sun of this
climate. When weeds so common with us can not be reared here, we cease
to wonder at the dissimilarity of the native Flora of the New World.
Yet, wherever the aboriginal forests are cleared, we see orchards,
gardens, and arable lands filled with the same fruit-trees, the same
grain and vegetables, as in Europe, so bountifully has Nature provided
that the plants most useful to man should be capable, like himself, of
becoming cosmopolites."--Lyell's _Travels in North America_, vol. i., p.

[Footnote 169: The Kalmias were so named by Linnæus in honor of
Professor Kalm, a favorite pupil of the great botanist.]

[Footnote 170: See Appendix, No. XXVII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 171: The oak from the dense forests of Canada, into which the
sun's rays never penetrate, is more porous, more abundant in sap, and
more prone to the dry rot than the oak grown in any other country.
Canadian timber has increased in value since the causes of its former
rapid decay have been more fully understood. Mr. Nathaniel Gould asserts
that the wane of the moon is now universally considered the best season
for felling timber, both in the United States and in Canada. The
Americans contract for their ship timber to be felled or girdled between
the 20th of October and the 12th of February. Dry rot being probably
caused by the natural moisture or sap being left in the wood, the less
there is in the tree when cut, the longer it will keep sound. As regards
the Canadian oak, it is stated by Mr. M'Taggart (the engineer, who so
ably distinguished himself while in the colony), that it is not so
durable as that of the British, the fiber not being so compact and
strong; it grows in extensive groves near the banks of large lakes and
rivers, sometimes found growing to 50 feet in length by 2 feet 6 inches;
its specific gravity is greater than water, and therefore, when floated
down in rafts, it is rendered buoyant with cross bars of pine. It is
easily squared with the hatchet, and answers well for ship-building and
heavy work; will endure the seasons for about fifteen years,[172] and
does not decay in England so soon as in Canada.--Montgomery Martin's
_Canada_, p. 257; Gray's _Canada_, p. 207.]

[Footnote 172: Kalm says, in 1748, "They were now building several ships
below Quebec for the king's account. However, before my departure, an
order arrived from France prohibiting the further building of ships of
war, because they had found that the ships built of American oak do not
last so long as those of European oak. Near Quebec is found very little
oak, and what grows there is not fit for use, being very small;
therefore they are obliged to fetch their oak timber from those parts of
Canada which border upon New England. But all the North American oaks
have the quality of lasting longer, and withstanding putrefaction
better, the further north they grow."--Kalm, p. 663.]

[Footnote 173: The most useful American plants in the small order
Betulaceæ are the birches, of which Canada contains six species. The
most celebrated is Betula Papyracea, the canoe birch, so called from the
use made of the bark in the construction of the Indian boats. It extends
from the shore of the Hudson in New York to a considerable range of
country northward of Canada. The bark is obtained with facility in large
pieces, and is sewed together with the tough and slender roots of the
pine-tree. La Hontan relates a characteristic story respecting the birch
bark: "I remember I have seen, in a certain library in France, a
manuscript of the Gospel of St. Matthew, written in Greek upon this sort
of bark; and which is yet more surprising, I was there told that it had
been written above a thousand years; and, at the same time, I dare swear
that it was the genuine birch bark of New France, which, in all
appearance, was not then discovered."--La Hontan, in Pinkerton, vol.
xiii., p. 361.

Mr. Weld says that "the bark resembles in some degree that of the
cork-tree, but it is of a closer grain, and also much more pliable, for
it admits of being rolled up the same as a piece of cloth. The Indians
of this part of the country always carry large rolls of it in their
canoes when they go on a hunting party, for the purpose of making
temporary huts. The bark is spread on small poles over their heads, and
fastened with strips of elm bark, which is remarkably tough, to stakes,
so as to form walls on the sides."--Weld, p. 311.]

[Footnote 174: See Appendix, No. XXVIII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 175: See Appendix, No. XXIX. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 176: The ginseng belongs to the small order Araliaceæ. The
botanical name is Panax quinquefolium: it was called Aureliana
Canadensis by Lafitau, who was the first to bring it from Canada to
France.--(Charlevoix, tom. iv., p. 309, fig. 13.) It was discovered in
the forests of Canada in 1718. It is herbaceous, scarcely a foot and a
half in height, and toward the upper part of the stem arise three
quinate-digitate leaves, from the center of which springs the flower
stalk. The root is fusiform and fleshy, and is the part most valued. We
are informed that among the Chinese many volumes have been written upon
its virtues; and that, besides the name already mentioned, it is known
by several others, expressive of the high estimation in which it is
universally held throughout the Celestial Empire: two of these
appellations are, 'the pure spirit of the earth,' and 'the plant that
gives immortality.' An ounce of ginseng bears the surprising price of
seven or eight ounces of silver at Pekin. When the French botanists in
Canada first saw a figure of it, they remembered to have seen a similar
plant in this country. They were confirmed in their conjecture by
considering that several settlements in Canada lie under the same
latitude with those parts of Chinese Tartary and China where the true
ginseng grows wild. They succeeded in their attempt, and found the same
ginseng wild and abundant in several parts of North America, both in
French and English plantations, in plain parts of the woods. It is fond
of shade, and of a deep, rich mold, and of land which is neither wet nor
high. It is not every where very common, for sometimes one may search
the woods for the space of several miles without finding a single plant
of it; but in those spots where it grows it is always found in great
abundance. It flowers in May and June, and its berries are ripe at the
end of August. The trade which is carried on with it here is very brisk,
for they gather great quantities of it, and send them to France, from
whence they are brought to China, and sold there to great advantage. The
Indians in the neighborhood of Montreal were so taken up with the
business of collecting ginseng, that the French farmers were not able
during that time to hire a single Indian, as they commonly do, to help
them in the harvest. The ginseng formerly grew in abundance round
Montreal, but at present there is not a single plant of it to be found,
so effectually have they been rooted out. This obliged the Indians this
summer to go far within the English boundaries to collect these roots.
After the Indians have sold the fresh roots to the merchants, the latter
must take a great deal of pains with them. They are spread on the floor
to dry, which commonly requires two months and upward, according as the
season is wet or dry. During that time they must be turned once or twice
every day, lest they should putrefy or molder. The roots prepared by the
Chinese are almost transparent, and look like horn in the inside; and
the roots which are fit for use are heavy and compact in the inside. No
one has ever discovered the Chinese method of preparing it. It is
thought, among other preparations, they dip the roots in a decoction of
the leaves of ginseng. Kalm wrote thus of the ginseng in 1749 (Kalm, in
Pinkerton, vol. xiii., p. 639). Mr. Heriot mentions that "one article of
commerce the Canadians had, by their own imprudence, rendered altogether
unprofitable. From the time that Canada ginseng had been imported to
Canton, and its quality pronounced equal to that of Corea or Tartary, a
pound of this plant, which before sold in Quebec for twenty pence,
became, when its value was once ascertained, worth one pound and
tenpence sterling. The export of this article amounted in 1752 to
£20,000 sterling. But the Canadians, eager suddenly to enrich
themselves, reaped this plant in May when it should not have been
gathered until September, and dried it in ovens when its moisture should
have been gradually evaporated in the shade. This fatal mistake, arising
from cupidity, and in some measure from ignorance, ruined the sale of
their ginseng among the only people on earth who are partial to its use,
and at an early period cut off from the colony a new branch of trade,
which, under proper regulations, might have been essentially
productive."--Heriot's _Travels through the Canadas_, p. 99, 1807.

"Mountainous woods in Tartary are mentioned as the place where the
ginseng is produced in the greatest abundance. In 1709, the emperor
ordered an army of ten thousand men to collect all the ginseng they
could find, and each person was to give him two ounces of the best,
while for the remainder payment was to be made in silver, weight for
weight. It was in the same year that Father Jartoux, a Jesuit missionary
in China, prepared a figure and accurate description of the plant, in
which he bears testimony to the beneficial effects of the root. He tried
it in many instances himself, and always with the same result,
especially when exhausted with fatigue. His pulse was increased, his
appetite improved, and his whole frame invigorated. Judging from the
accounts before us, we should say that the Chinese were extravagant in
their ideas of the virtues of this herb; but that it is undoubtedly a
cordial stimulant, to be compared, perhaps, in some degree, with the
aromatic root of Meum athamanticum, so much esteemed by the Scottish
Highlanders. It has nevertheless disappeared from our Materia
Medica."--Murray's _Canada_, vol. iii., p. 308. Charlevoix, tom. vi., p.

"Ginseng a véritablement la vertu de soutenir, de fortifier, et de
rappeller les forces épuisées."--Lafitau, tom. ii., p. 142.]

[Footnote 177: In La Hontan's time (1683), he speaks of "maiden-hair"
being as common in the forests of Canada as fern in those of France, and
is esteemed beyond that of other countries, insomuch that the
inhabitants of Quebec prepare great quantities of its syrup, which they
send to Paris, Nantes, Rouen, and several other cities of France.
Charlevoix gives a figure of the maiden-hair (tom. iv., p. 301), under
the name of Adiantum Americanum.--"Cette plante a la racine fort petite,
et enveloppée de fibres noires, fort déliées; sa tige est d'un pourpre
foncé, et s'élève en quelques endroits à trois ou quatre pieds de haut;
il en sort des branches, qui se courbent en tous sens. Les feuilles sont
plus larges que celles de notre Capillaire de France, d'un beau verd
d'un côté, et de l'autre, semées de petits points obscurs; nulle part
ailleurs cette plante n'est si haute ni si vive, qu'en Canada. Elle n'a
aucune odeur tandis qu'elle est sur pied, mais quand elle a été
renfermée, elle répand une odeur de violette, qui embaume. Sa qualité
est aussi beaucoup au-dessus de tous les autres capillaires."

The Herba capillaris is the Adiantum pedatum of Linnæus (Sp. Pl., p.
1557). Cornutus, in his _Canadens. Plant. Historia_, p. 7, calls it
Adiantum Americanum, and gives a figure of it, p. 6. Kalm says that "it
grows in all the British colonies of America, and likewise in the
southern parts of Canada, but I never found it near Quebec. It grows in
the woods in shady places, and in a good soil. Several people in Albany
and Canada assured me that its leaves were very much used instead of tea
in consumptions, coughs, and all kinds of pectoral diseases. This they
have learned from the Indians, who have made use of it for these
purposes from time immemorial. This American maiden-hair is reckoned
preferable in surgery to that which we have in Europe, and therefore
they send a great quantity of it to France every year. Commonly the
price at Quebec is between five and fifteen sols a pound. The Indians
went into the woods about this time (August), and traveled far above
Montreal in quest of this plant."--Kalm, in Pinkerton, vol. xiii., p.

[Footnote 178: "This moss is called by the Canadian voyageurs, _Tripe de
Roche_; it belongs to the order Gyrophara. They who have perused the
affecting narrative of the sufferings of Captain Franklin and his
gallant party, on their return from their first journey to the Arctic
Sea, will remember that it was on _Tripe de Roche_ that they depended,
under God, for their very existence. 'We looked,' says Captain Franklin,
'with humble confidence to the Great Author and giver of all good, for a
continuance of the support which had been hitherto always supplied to us
at our greatest need,' and he was not disappointed."--Murray's _Canada_,
vol. iii., p. 330. "Parmi les sauvages errans, et qui ne cultivent point
du tout la terre, lorsque la chasse et la pêche leur manquent, leur
unique ressource est une espèce de mousse, qui croît sur certains
rochers, et que nos Français ont nommée Tripe de Roche; rien n'est plus
insipide que ce mets, lequel n'a pas même beaucoup de substance, c'est
bien là être réduit au pur nécessaire pour ne pas mourir de
faim."--Charlevoix, tom. vi., p. 24.]

[Footnote 179: See Appendix, No. XXX. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 180: See Appendix, No. XXXI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 181: "The Swedes gave the name of Indian hemp to Apocynum
cannabinum, because the Indians apply it to the same purposes as the
Europeans do hemp; for the stalk may be divided into filaments, and is
easily prepared. This plant grows in abundance in old corn grounds, in
woods, on hills, and on high glades. The Indians make ropes of this
Apocynum, which the Swedes buy, and employ them as bridles, and for
nets. These ropes are stronger, and kept longer in water than such as
were made of common hemp. The Swedes commonly got fourteen yards of
these ropes for one piece of bread. On my journey through the country of
the Iroquois, I saw the women employed in manufacturing this hemp. The
plant is perennial, which renders the annual planting of it altogether
unnecessary. Out of the root and stalk of this plant, when it is fresh,
comes a white, milky juice, which is somewhat poisonous. Sometimes the
fishing tackle of the Indian consists entirely of this hemp."--Kalm, in
Pinkerton, vol xiii., p. 544.]

[Footnote 182: See Appendix, No. XXXII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 183: Buffon, Hist. Nat., tom. ix., p. 13, 203; Acosta, Hist.,
lib. iv., cap. xxxiv.; Pisonis Hist., p. 6; Herrera, Dec. IV., lib. iv.,
cap. i.; lib. x., cap. xiii.]

[Footnote 184: Canada has not the fine natural pastures of Ireland,
England, Holland, and other countries enjoying a cool, moist, and
equable climate. Artificial grasses, now a most valuable branch of
British husbandry, are peculiarly important in Canada, where so large a
quantity of hay should be stored for winter use. They are also most
useful in preparing the soil for grain crops, but have the disadvantage
of requiring to stand the severe winter, so trying to all except annual
plants. Clover, which is supposed to yield three times the produce of
natural grass, grows luxuriantly; but in the second year its roots are
often found to have been destroyed by frost. For this reason, it is
necessary to have recourse to the species named Timothy, which is
extremely hardy, and will set at defiance even a Canadian
winter.--Talbot, vol. i., p. 301, Gould, p. 67.]

[Footnote 185: "In the western parts of Lower Canada, and throughout
Upper Canada, where it is customary for travelers to carry their own
bedding with them, these skins are very generally made use of for the
purpose of sleeping upon. For upward of two months we scarcely ever had
any other bed than one of the skins spread on the floor and a blanket to
each person. The skins are dressed by the Indians with the hair on, and
they are rendered by a peculiar process as pliable as cloth. When the
buffalo is killed in the beginning of the winter, at which time he is
fenced against the cold, the hair resembles very much that of a black
bear; it is then long, straight, and of a blackish color; but when the
animal is killed in the summer, the hair is short and curly, and of a
light brown color, owing to its being scorched by the rays of the
sun."--Weld, p. 313.]

[Footnote 186: Charlevoix says, "que la peau, quoique très forte,
devient souple et moëlleuse comme le meilleur chamois. Les sauvages en
font des boucliers, qui sont très légers, et que les bals de fusil ne
perçent pas aisément."--Tom. v., p. 193.]

[Footnote 187: The height of the domesticated reindeer is about three
feet; of the wild ones, four. It lives to the age of sixteen years. The
reindeer is a native of the northern regions only. In America it does
not extend further south than Canada. The Indians often kill numbers for
the sake of their tongue only; at other times they separate the flesh
from the bones, and preserve it by drying it in the smoke. The fat they
sell to the English, who use it for frying instead of butter. The skins,
also, are an article of extensive commerce with the English.--Rees's
_Cyclopædia_, art. Cervus Tarandus.

Charlevoix says that the Canadian _caribou_ differs in nothing from the
_Renne_ of Buffon except in the color of its skin, which is brown or
reddish.--Tom. v., p. 191. La Hontan calls the _caribou_ a species of
wild ass; and Charlevoix says that its form resembles that of the ass,
but that it at least equals the stag in agility.]

[Footnote 188: Pennant is persuaded that the stag is not a native of
America, and considers the deer known in that country by the name of
stag as a distinct species. The American stag is the Cervus Canadensis
of Erxleben. The Americans hunt and shoot those animals not so much for
the sake of the flesh as of the fat, which serves as tallow in making
candles, and the skins, which they dispose of to the Hudson's Bay
Company. They are caught principally in the inland parts, near the
vicinity of the lakes.--Rees's _Cyclopædia_, art. Cervus Elaphus.

Charlevoix says that "le Cerf en Canada est absolument le même qu'en
France, peut être communément un peu plus grand."--Tom. v., p. 189.]

[Footnote 189: The fallow deer in America have been introduced there
from Europe; for the animal called the American fallow is of a very
different kind, and is peculiar to the New Continent. This, the _Cervus_
Virginianus, inhabits all the provinces south of Canada.--Rees's
_Cyclopædia_, art. Cervus Virginianus.]

[Footnote 190: See Appendix, No. XXXIII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 191: See Appendix, No. XXXIV. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 192: See Appendix, No. XXXV. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 193: See Appendix, No. XXXVI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 194: See Appendix, No. XXXVII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 195: See Appendix, No. XXXVIII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 196: See Appendix, No. XXXIX. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 197: See Appendix, No. XL. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 198: "While we were roaming along the shore of Lake Ontario we
caught a species of tortoise (testudo picta), which was a gayly-colored
shell, and I carried it a day's journey in the carriage, and then turned
it out, to see whether, as I was told, it would know its way back to
Lake Ontario. I am bound to admit that its instinct on this occasion did
not fail, for it made directly for a ravine, in the bottom of which was
a stream that would lead it in time to the Genesee River, and this would
carry it to its native lake if it escaped destruction at the Falls below
Rochester, where the celebrated diver, Sam Patch, perished, after he had
succeeded in throwing himself with impunity down several other great
waterfalls. There is a fresh-water tortoise in Europe (Terrapena
Europea) found in Hungary, Prussia, and Silesia, as far north as
latitude 50° to 52°. It also occurs near Bordeaux, and in the north of
Italy, 44° and 45° north latitude, which precisely corresponds with the
latitude of Lake Ontario."--Lyell's _Travels in North America_, vol. i.,
p. 25.]

[Footnote 199: "To the Malacodermous division belongs the remarkable
genus Lampyris, which contains the insects commonly called glow-worms.
The substance from which the luminous property results has been the
subject of frequent experiment and observation. It is obviously under
the control of the animal, which, when approached, may frequently be
observed to diminish or put out its light. The only species with which
we are acquainted in British America is Lampyris corusca. It occurs in
Canada, and has been taken at least as far north as latitude 54°. It was
originally described by Simmons as a native of Finland and Russia, on
the authority of Uddman, but has not since been found there."--Murray,
vol. iii., p. 277.

"We saw numerous yellow butterflies, very like a British species.
Sometimes forty of them clustering on a small spot resembled a plot of
primroses, and as they rose altogether, and flew off slowly on every
side, it was like the play of a beautiful fountain."--Lyell's _America_,
vol. i., p. 25.]


Perhaps the saddest chapter in the history of the sons of Adam is
furnished by the Red Man of America. His origin is unknown; no records
tell the tale of his ancient deeds. A foundling in the human family,
discovered by his stronger brethren wandering wild through the forests
and over the prairies of the western desert, no fraternal welcome
greeted this lost child of nature; no soothing voice of affection fell
upon his ear; no gentle kindness wooed him from his savage isolation.
The hand of irresistible power was stretched out, not to raise him from
his low estate and lead him into the brotherhood of civilized man, but
to thrust him away with cruel and unjust disdain.

Little more than three centuries and a half have elapsed since the
Indian first gazed with terror and admiration upon the white strangers,
and already three fourths of his inheritance are rent away, and three
fourths of his race have vanished from the earth; while the sad remnant,
few and feeble, faint and weary, "are fast traveling to the shades of
their fathers, toward the setting sun."[200] Year by year they wither
away; to them the close breath of civilized man is more destructive than
the deadliest blight.[202] The arts and appliances which the accumulated
ingenuity of ages has provided to aid the labor and enhance the
enjoyments of others, have been but a curse to these children of the
wilderness. That blessed light which shines to the miserable of this
world through the vista of the "shadowy valley," cheering the fainting
spirit with the earnest of a glorious future, sheds but a few dim and
distorted rays upon the outskirts of the Red Man's forest land.

All the relations of Europeans to the Indian have been alike fatal to
him, whether of peace or war; as tyrants or suppliants; as conquerors
armed with unknown weapons of destruction; as the insidious purchasers
of his hunting-grounds, betraying him into an accursed thirst for the
deadly fire-water; as the greedy gold-seekers, crushing his feeble frame
under the hated labors of the mine; as shipwrecked and hungry wanderers,
while receiving his simple alms, marking the fertility and
defenselessness of his lands; as sick men enjoying his hospitality,
and, at the same time, imparting that terrible disease[203] which has
swept off whole nations; as woodmen in his forest, and intrusive tillers
of his ground, scaring away to the far West those animals of the chase
given by the Great Spirit for his food: there is to him a terrible
monotony of result. In the delicious islands of the Caribbean Sea, and
in the stern and magnificent regions of the northeast, scarcely now
remains a mound, or stone, or trace even of tradition, to point out the
place where any among the departed millions sleep.

The discovery of the American Indians brought to light not only a new
race, but also a totally new condition of men. The rudest form of human
society known in the Old World was far advanced beyond that of the
mysterious children of the West, in arts, knowledge, and government.
Even among the simplest European and Asiatic nations the principle of
individual possession was established; the beasts of the field were
domesticated to supply the food and aid the labors of man, and large
bodies of people were united under the sway of hereditary chiefs. But
the Red Man roamed over the vast forests and prairies of his
undiscovered continent, accompanied by few of his fellows, unassisted by
beasts of burden,[204] and trusting alone to his skill and fortune in
the chase for a support. The first European visitors to the New World
were filled with such astonishment at the appearance and complexion of
the Red Man, that they hastily concluded he belonged to a different
species from themselves. As the native nations became better known,
their warriors, statesmen, and orators commanded the admiration of the
strangers. Especially in the northern people, every savage virtue was
conspicuous; they were gentle in peace, but terrible in war; of a proud
and noble bearing, honest, faithful, and hospitable, loving order though
without laws, and animated by the strongest and most devoted loyalty to
their tribe. At the same time, while willingly recording their high and
admirable qualities, pity for the devoted race must not blind us to
their ferocious and degrading vices.

It was not until the end of the seventeenth century that the manners and
characteristics of this strange race attracted to any considerable
degree the attention of philosophers and theorists; a chasm in human
history then seemed about to be filled. Eager to throw light upon the
subject, but too impatient to inquire into the facts necessary for the
formation of opinions, the conclusions formed were often unjust to the
native dignity of the Red Indian,[205] and have been proved erroneous by
subsequent and more perfect information. On the other hand, one of the
most gifted but dangerous of modern philosophers would exalt these
untutored children of nature to a higher degree of honor and excellence
than civilization and knowledge can confer. He deemed that the elevation
and independence of mind, resulting from the rude simplicity of savage
life, is sought in vain among the members of refined and organized

Every thing tended to render inquiry into the state of the rude tribes
of America difficult and obscure. In the generality of cases they
presented characteristics of a native simplicity, elsewhere unknown; and
even in the more favored districts, where a degree of civilization
appeared, it had assumed a form and direction totally different from
that of the Old World.[207]

The origin of this mysterious people has been the subject of an immense
variety of speculations, and has involved the question, whether all men
are the sons of Adam, or whether the distinctions of the human race were
owing to the several sources from whence its members sprung? The skeptic
supposition that each portion of the globe gave its own original type of
man to the human family at once solves the difficulty of American
population; but as both Christianity and philosophy alike forbid
acceptance of this view,[208] it becomes necessary to consider the
relative probabilities in favor of the other different theories which
enthusiasm, ingenuity, and research have contributed to lay before the

Without referring to the most sacred and ancient of authorities, we may
find existing natural evidence abundantly sufficient to establish the
belief of the common descent of our race. There are not in the human
form differences such as distinguish separate species of the brute
creation. All races of men are nearly of like stature and size, varying
only by the accidents of climate and food favorable or adverse to their
full development. The number, shape, and uses of limbs and extremities
are alike, and internal construction is invariably the same. These are
circumstances the least acted upon by situation and temperature, and
therefore the surest tests of a particular species. Color is the most
obvious and the principal indication of difference in the human
families, and is evidently influenced to a great extent by the action of
the sun,[209] as the swarthy cheek of the harvest laborer will witness.
Under the equator we find the jet black of the negro; then the
olive-colored Moors of the southern shores of the Mediterranean; again,
the bronzed face of the Spaniard and Italian; next, the Frenchman,
darker than those who dwell under the temperate skies of England; and,
last, the bleached and pallid visages of the north. Along the arctic
circle, indeed, a dusky tint again appears: that, however, may be fairly
attributed to the scorching power of the sun, constantly over the
horizon, through the brief and fiery summer. The natives remain
generally in the open air during this time, fishing, or in the chase;
and the effect of exposure stamps them with a complexion which even the
long-continued snows can not remove. In the rigorous winter season, the
people of those dreary countries pass most of their time in wretched
huts or subterranean dwellings, where they heap up large fires to warm
their shivering limbs. The smoke has no proper vent in these
ill-constructed abodes; it fills the confined air, and tends to darken
the complexions of those constantly exposed to its influence.

The difference of color in the human race is doubtless influenced by
many causes, modifying the effect of position with regard to the
tropics. The great elevation of a particular district, its proximity to
the sea, the shades of a vast forest, the exhalations from extensive
marshes, all tend to diminish materially the power of a southern
sun.[210] On the other hand, intensity of heat is aggravated by the
neighborhood of arid and sandy deserts, or rocky tracts. The action of
long-continued heat creates a more permanent effect than the mere
darkening of the outer skin: it alters the character of those subtile
juices that display their color through the almost transparent
covering.[211] We see that, from a constitutional peculiarity in
individuals, the painful variety of the albino is sometimes produced in
the hottest countries. Certain internal diseases, and different
medicines, change the beautiful bloom of the young and healthy into
repulsive and unnatural tints. A peculiar secretion of the carbon
abounding in the human frame produces the jet black of the negro's skin,
and enables him to bear without inconvenience the terrible sultriness of
his native land.[212] The dark races, inferior in animal and
intellectual powers to the white man, are yet nearly free from the
deformities he so often exhibits, perhaps on account of a less
susceptible and delicate structure. The Caucasian or European races,
born and matured under a temperate climate, manifestly enjoy the highest
gifts of man. Wherever they come in contact with their colored brother,
he ultimately yields to the irresistible superiority, and becomes,
according to the caprice of their haughty will, the victim, the
dependent, or the slave.[213]

There are other characteristics different from, but generally combined
with color, which are influenced by constitutional varieties. The hair
usually harmonizes with the complexion, and, like it, shows the
influence of climate. In cold countries, the natural covering of every
animal becomes rich and soft; the plentiful locks and manly beard of the
European show a marked contrast to the coarse and scanty hair of the
inhabitants of tropical countries. The development of mental power and
refined habits of life have also a strong but slow effect upon the
outward form.[214] Certain African nations of a higher intelligence and
civilization than their rude neighbors, show much less of the
peculiarities of the negro features. The refined Hindoo displays a
delicate form and expression under his dark complexion. The black color
and the negro features are accidentally not necessarily connected, and
it seems to require both climate and inferiority of intellect to unite
them in the same race.

When circumstances of climate or situation have effected peculiar
appearances in a nation or tribe, the results will long survive the
causes when people are removed to widely-different latitudes: a dark
color is not easily effaced, even under the influence of moderate
temperature and heightened civilization. For these reasons, there appear
many cases where the complexion of the inhabitants and the climate of
the country do not correspond, but the original characteristics will be
found undergoing the process of gradual change, ultimately adapting
themselves to their new country and situation.[215] The marked and
peculiar countenances of the once "chosen people" vary, in color at
least, wherever they are seen over the world, although uninfluenced by
any admixture of alien blood. In England the children of Israel and the
descendant of the Saxon are alike of a fair complexion, and on the banks
of the Nile the Jew and the Egyptian show the same swarthy hue.[216]

At first sight this American race would appear to offer evidence against
the supposed influence of climate upon color, as one general form and
complexion prevail in all latitudes of the New World, from the tropics
to the frozen regions of the north. Great varieties, however, exist in
the shade of the red or copper[217] color of the Indians. There are two
extremes of complexion among mankind--those of the northern European and
the African negro; between these there is a series of shades, that of
the American Indian being about midway. The structure of the New World,
and the circumstances of its inhabitants, may account for the generally
equal color of their skin. The western Indian never becomes black, even
when dwelling directly under the equator. He lives among stupendous
mountain ranges, where cool breezes from the snowy heights sweep
through the valleys and over the plains below. The vast rivers springing
from under those lofty peaks inundate a great extent of country, and
turn it into swamps, whence perpetual exhalations arise and lower the
temperature. There are no fiery deserts to heat the passing wind and
reflect the rays of the sun; a continual forest, with luxuriant foliage,
and a dense underwood, spreads a pleasant shade over the surface of the
earth. America, under the same latitudes, especially on the eastern
coast, is every where colder than the Old World. The nearest approach to
a black complexion is seen in the people of Brazil, a country
comparatively low, and immediately under the equator. The inhabitants of
the lofty Mexican table-land are also very dark, and on those arid
plains the sun pours down its scorching rays upon a surface almost
devoid of sheltering vegetation.

The habits of savage life, and the constant exposure to the elements,
seem sufficient to cause a dark tint upon the human skin even in the
temperate regions of America, where the cold is far greater than in the
same latitude in Europe. The inhabitants of those immense countries are
badly clothed, imperfectly defended against the weather, miserably
housed; wandering in war or in the chase, exposed for weeks at a time to
the mercy of the elements, they soon darken into the indelible red or
copper color of their race. On the northwest coasts, about latitude 50°,
in Nootka Sound, and a number of other smaller bays, dwell a people more
numerous and better provided with food and shelter than their eastern
neighbors. They are free from a great part of the toils and hardships of
the hunter, and from the vicissitudes of the season. When cleansed from
their filthy and fantastic painting, it appears that their complexion
and features resemble those of the European.[218]

Modern discoveries have to a great extent dispelled the mystery of the
Indian origin, and proved the fallacy of the numerous and ingenious
theories formerly advanced with so much pertinacity and zeal. Since the
northwest coasts of America and the northeast of Asia have been
explored, little difficulty remains on this subject. The two continents
approach so nearly in that direction that they are almost within sight
of each other, and small boats can safely pass the narrow strait. Ten
degrees further south, the Aleutian and Fox Islands[219] form a
continuous chain between Kamtschatka and the peninsula of Alaska, in
such a manner as to leave the passage across a matter of no difficulty.
The rude and hardy Tschutchi, inhabiting the northeast of Asia,
frequently sail from one continent to the other.[220] From the remotest
antiquity, this ignorant people possessed the wonderful secret of the
existence of a world hidden from the wisest and most adventurous of
civilized nations. They were unconscious of the value of their vast
discovery; they passed over a stormy strait from one frozen shore to
another, as stern and desolate as that they had left behind, and knew
not that they had crossed one of the great boundaries of earth. When
they first entered upon the wilderness of America, probably the most
adventurous pushed down toward the genial regions of the south, and so
through the long ages of the past the stream of population flowed slowly
on, wave by wave, to the remotest limits of the east and south. The
Indians resemble the people of northeastern Asia in form and feature
more than any other of the human race. Their population is most dense
along the districts nearest to Asia; and among the Mexicans, whose
records of the past deserve credence, there is a constant tradition that
their Aztec and Toultec chiefs came from the northwest. Every where but
to the north, America is surrounded with a vast ocean unbroken by any
chain of islands that could connect it with the Old World. Most
probably no living man ever crossed this immense barrier before the time
of Columbus. It is certain that in no part of America have any authentic
traces been found of European civilization; the civilization of America,
such as it was, arose, as it flourished, in the fertile plains of
Mexico[221] and in the delightful valleys of Peru;[222] there, where the
bounty of nature supplied an abundance of the necessaries of life, the
population rapidly multiplied, and the arts became objects of

There is something almost mysterious in the total difference between
the languages of the Old and New World.[223] All the tongues of
civilized nations spring from a few original roots, somewhat analogous
to each other; but it would seem that, among wandering tribes, dispersed
over a vast extent of country, carrying on but little intercourse, and
having no written record or traditionary recital to preserve any fixed
standard, language undergoes a complete change in the course of ages.
The great varieties of tongues in America, and their dissimilarity to
each other, tend to confirm this supposition.

In various parts of America, remains are found which place beyond a
doubt the ancient existence of a people more numerous, powerful, and
civilized than the present race of Indians; but the indications of this
departed people are not such as to bespeak their having been of very
remote antiquity: the ruined cities of Central America, concealed by the
forest growth of centuries, and the huge mounds of earth[224] in the
Valley of the Mississippi and upon the table-lands of Mexico, their
dwellings and mausoleums, although long swept over by the storm of
savage conquest, afford no proofs of their having existed very far back
into those dark ages when the New World was unknown to Europe. The
history of these past races of men will probably forever remain a sealed
book, but there is no doubt that a great population once covered those
rich countries which the first English visitors found the wild
hunting-grounds for a few savage tribes.[225] Probably the existing race
of Red Men were the conquerors and exterminators of the feeble but
civilized aboriginal nations, and as soon as they possessed the land
they split into separate and hostile communities, waging perpetual war
with each other so as constantly to diminish their numbers.

Far up the Mississippi and the Missouri the exploration of the country
brings to light incontestable proofs of the existence of the mysterious
aboriginal race: wells artificially walled, and various other structures
for convenience or defense, are frequently seen; ornaments of silver,
copper, and even brass are found, together with various articles of
pottery and sculptured stone; sepulchers filled with vast numbers of
human bones have often been discovered, and human bodies in a state of
preservation are sometimes exhumed. On one of these the hair was yellow
or sandy, and it is well known that an unvarying characteristic of the
present red race is the lank black hair. A splendid robe of a kind of
linen, made apparently from nettle fibers, and interwoven with the
beautiful feathers of the wild turkey, encircled this long-buried mummy.
The number and the magnitude of the mounds bear evidence that the
concurrent labors of a vast assembly of men were employed in their

In the progress of early discovery and settlement, striking views were
presented of savage life among the Red Men inhabiting the Atlantic
coast; but later researches along the banks of the Mississippi and its
tributaries, and by the great Canadian lakes, exhibited this people
under a still more remarkable aspect. The most prominent among the
natives of the interior for power, policy, and courage, were the
Iroquois or Five Nations.[227] Their territory extended westward from
Lake Champlain, to the farthest extremity of Ontario, along the southern
banks of the St. Lawrence, and of the Great Lake. Although formed by the
alliance of five independent tribes, they always presented a united
front to their foes, whether in defense or aggression. Their enemies,
the Algonquins, held an extensive domain on the northern bank of the St.
Lawrence; these last were at one time the masters of all that portion of
America, and were the most polished and mildest in manners of the
northern tribes. They depended altogether for subsistence on the produce
of the chase, and disdained those among their neighbors who attempted
the cultivation of the soil. The Hurons[228] were a numerous nation,
generally allied with the Algonquins, inhabiting the immense and
fertile territory extending westward to the Great Lake, from which they
take their name: they occupied themselves with a rude husbandry, which
the fertile soil of the west repaid, by affording them an abundant
subsistence; but they were more effeminate and luxurious than their
neighbors, and inferior in savage virtue and independence. The
above-named nations were those principally connected with the events of
Canadian history.

Man is less affected by climate in his bodily development than any other
animal; his frame is at the same time so hardy and flexible, that he
thrives and increases in every variety of temperature and situation,
from the tropic to the pole; nevertheless, in extremes such as these,
his complexion, size, and vigor usually undergo considerable
modifications.[229] Among the Red Men of America, however, there is a
remarkable similarity of countenance, form, manners, and habits, in
every part of the continent. No other race can show people speaking
different languages, inhabiting widely different climates, and
subsisting on different food, who are so wonderfully alike.[231] There
are, indeed, varieties of stature, strength, intellect, and self-respect
to be found among them; but the savage of the frozen north, and the
Indian of the tropics, have the same stamp of person, and the same
instincts.[232] There is a language of signs common to all, conveying
similar ideas, and providing a means of mutual intelligence to every Red
Man from north to south.

The North American Indians are generally of a fair height and
proportion. Deformities or personal defects[233] are rare among them;
and they are never seen to fall into corpulency. Their features,
naturally pleasing and regular, are often distorted by absurd attempts
to improve their beauty, or render their appearance more terrible. They
have high cheek bones, sharp and rather aquiline noses, and good teeth.
Their skin is generally described as red or copper-colored, approaching
to the tint of cinnamon bark, a complexion peculiar to the inhabitants
of the New World. The hair of the Americans, like that of their
Mongolian ancestors, is coarse, black, thin, but strong, and growing to
a great length. Many tribes of both these races remove it from every
part of the head except the crown, where a small tuft is left, and
cherished with care. It is a universal habit among the tribes of the New
World to eradicate every symptom of beard: hence the early travelers
were led to conclude that the smoothness of their faces resulted from a
natural deficiency. One reason for the adoption of this strange custom
was to enable them to paint themselves with greater ease. Among old men,
who have become indifferent to their appearance, the beard is again seen
to a small extent.[234]

On the continent, especially toward the north, the natives were of
robust and vigorous constitution. Their sole employment was the chase of
the numerous wild animals of the forest and prairies: from their
continual activity, their frame acquired firmness and strength;[235] but
in the islands, where game was rare, and the earth supplied
spontaneously an abundant subsistence, the Indians were comparatively
feeble, being neither inured to the exertions of the chase nor the
labors of cultivation. Generally, the Americans were more remarkable for
agility than strength, and are said to have been more like beasts of
prey than animals formed for labor. Toil was hateful, and even
destructive to them; they broke down and perished under tasks that would
not have wearied a European. Experience proves that the physical
strength of civilized man exceeds that of the savage.[236] Hand to hand
in war, in wrestling, leaping, and even in running for a short distance,
this superiority usually appears. In a long journey, however, the
endurance of the Indian has no parallel among Europeans. A Red Man has
been known to travel nearly eighty miles between sunrise and sunset,
without apparent fatigue. He performs a long journey, bearing a heavy
burden, and indulging in no refreshment or repose; an enemy can not
escape his persevering pursuit, even when mounted on a strong horse.

It has been already observed that the Americans are rarely or never
deformed, or defective in their senses, while in their wild state, but
in those districts where the restraints of law are felt, an
extraordinary number of blind, deaf, dwarfs, and cripples, are observed.
The terrible custom among the savage tribes of destroying those
children who do not promise a vigorous growth, accounts for this
apparent anomaly. Infancy is so long and helpless that it weighs as a
heavy burden upon a wandering people; food is scanty and uncertain of
supply, hunters and their families must range over extensive countries,
and often remove from place to place. Judging that children of feeble or
defective formation are not likely to survive the hardships of this
errant life, they destroy all such unpromising offspring,[237] or desert
them to a slower and more dreadful fate. The lot of all is so hard that
few born with any great constitutional defect could long survive, and
arrive at maturity.

In the simplicity of savage life, where labor does not oppress, nor
luxury enervate the human frame, and where harassing cares are unknown,
we are led to expect that disease and suffering should be comparatively
rare, and that the functions of nature should not reach the close of
their gradual decay till an extreme old age. The decrepit and shriveled
forms of many American Indians would seem to indicate that they had long
passed the ordinary time of life. But it is difficult or impossible to
ascertain their exact age, as the art of counting is generally unknown
among them, and they are strangely forgetful and indifferent to the
past. Their longevity, however, varies considerably, according to
differences of climate and habits of life. These children of nature are
naturally free from many of the diseases afflicting civilized nations;
they have not even names in their language to distinguish such ills, the
offspring of a luxury to them unknown. The diseases of the savage,
however, though few, are violent and fatal; the severe hardships of his
mode of life produce maladies of a dangerous description. From
improvidence they are often reduced for a considerable time to a state
bordering on starvation. When successful in the chase, or in the seasons
when earth supplies her bounty, they indulge in enormous excesses. These
extremes of want and abundance prove equally pernicious, for, although
habit and necessity enable them at the time to tolerate such sudden
transitions, the constitution is ultimately injured: disorders arising
from these causes strike down numbers in the prime and vigor of youth,
and are so common that they appear the necessary consequences of their
mode of life. The Indian is likewise peculiarly subject to consumption,
pleurisy, asthma, and paralysis, engendered by the fatigues and
hardships of the chase and war, and constant exposure to extremes of
heat and cold. Experience supports the conclusion that the average life
is greater among people in an advanced condition of society than among
those in a state of nature; among savages, all are affected by
circumstances of over-exertion, privation, and excess, but in civilized
societies the diseases of luxury only affect the few.


[Footnote 200: "Driven by the European populations toward the northwest
of North America,[201] the savage tribes are returning, by a singular
destiny, to expire on the same shore where they landed, in unknown ages,
to take possession of America. In the Iroquois language, the Indians
gave themselves the appellation of _Men of Always_ (Ongoueonoue); these
_men of always_ have passed away, and the stranger will soon have left
to the lawful heirs of a whole world nothing but the mold of their
graves."--Chateaubriand's _Travels in America_ (Eng. trans.), vol. ii.,
p. 93.]

[Footnote 201: De Tocqueville calculated that along the borders of the
United States, from Lake Superior to the Gulf of Mexico, extending a
distance of more than 1200 miles, as the bird flies, the whites advance
every year at a mean rate of seventeen miles; and he truly observes that
there is a grandeur and solemnity in this gradual and continuous march
of the European race toward the Rocky Mountains. He compares it to "a
deluge of men rising, unabatedly, and daily driven onward by the hand of
God."--_Democracy in America_, vol. ii., cap. x., §4; Lyell, vol. ii.,
p. 77.]

[Footnote 202: See Appendix, No. XLI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 203: See Appendix, No. XLII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 204: "Generally speaking, the American races of mankind were
characterized by a want of domestic animals, and this had considerable
influence on their domestic life." (_Cosmos_, note, vol. ii., p. 481.)
Contrasting the Bedouin with the Red Indian, Volney observes, "the
American savage is, on the contrary, a hunter and a butcher, who has had
daily occasion to kill and slay, and in every animal has beheld nothing
but a fugitive prey, which he must be quick to seize. He has thus
acquired a roaming, wasteful, and ferocious disposition; has become an
animal of the same kind with the wolf and tiger; has united in bands or
troops, but not into organized societies."]

[Footnote 205: On ne prit pas d'abord les Américains pour des hommes,
mais pour des orang-otangs, pour des grands singes, qu'on pouvoit
détruire sans remords et sans reproche. Un pape fit une Bulle originale
dans laquelle il déclara qu' ayant envie de fonder des Evêchés dans les
plus riches contrées de l'Amérique, il plaisoit à lui et au Saint Esprit
de reconnoitre les Américains pour des hommes véritables; de sorte que,
sans cette décision d'une Italien, les habitans du Nouveau Monde
seroient encore maintenant, aux yeux des fidèles, une race d'animaux
équivoques.... Qui auroit cru que malgré cette sentence de Rome, on eut
agité violemment au conseil de Lima, 1583, si les Américains avoient
assez d'esprit pour être admis aux sacrements de l'Eglise. Plusieurs
évêques persistèrent à les leur refuser pendant que les Jésuites
faisoient communier tous les jours leurs Indiens esclaves au Paraquai,
afin de les accoûtumer, disoient-ils, à la discipline, et pour les
détourner de l'horrible coutume de se nourrir de chair humain.--_Récherches
Philosophiques sur les Américains_, De Pauw, tom. i., p. 35.]

[Footnote 206: Rousseau, opposed by Buffon, Volney, &c.]

[Footnote 207: "Notwithstanding the striking analogies existing between the
nations of the New Continent and the Tartar tribes who have adopted the
religion of Bouddah, I think I discover in the mythology of the Americans,
in the style of their paintings, in their languages, and especially in
their external conformation, the descendants of a race of men, which, early
separated from the rest of mankind, has followed for a lengthened series of
years a peculiar road in the unfolding of its intellectual faculties, and
in its tendency toward civilization."--Humboldt's _Ancient Inhabitants of
America_, vol. i., p. 200.

"It can not be doubted that the greater part of the nations of America
belong to a race of men who, isolated ever since the infancy of the
world from the rest of mankind, exhibit in the nature and diversity of
language, in their features, and the conformation of their skull,
incontestable proofs of an early and complete civilization."--_Ibid._,
vol. i., p. 250.

On the American races in general, Humboldt refers to the beautiful work
of Samuel George Morton, _Craniæ Americanæ_, 1839, p. 62-86; and an
account of the skulls brought by Pentland from the Highlands of
Titicaca, in the '_Dublin Journal of Medical and Chemical Science_,'
vol. v., p. 475, 1834; also, Alcide d'Orbigny, _L'Homme Américain
considéré sous ses Rapports Physiol. et Mor._, p. 221, 1839; and,
further, the work, so full of delicate ethnographical observations, of
Prinz Maximilian of Wied, _Reise in das Innere von Nordamerika_, 1839.]

[Footnote 208: "With regard to their origin, I have no doubt,
independent of theological considerations, but that it is the same with
ours. The resemblance of the North American savages to the Oriental
Tartars renders it probable that they originally sprang from the same
stock."--Buffon, Eng. trans., vol. iii., p. 193.]

[Footnote 209: "The Ethiopians," sings the old tragedian, Theodectes of
Phaselis, "are dyed by the near sun-god in his course with a dark and
sooty luster; the sun's heat crisps and dries up their hair." The
expeditions of Alexander, which were so influential in exciting ideas of
the physical cosmography, first fanned the dispute on the uncertain
influence of climate upon races of men. Humboldt's _Cosmos_, vol. i., p.
386. Volney, p. 506, and Oldmixon, vol. i., p. 286, assert that the
savages are born white, and in their infancy continue so. An intelligent
Indian said to Volney, "Why should there be any difference of color
between us and them? (some Spaniards who had been bronzed in America).
In them, as in us, it is the work of _the father of colors_, the sun,
that burns us. You whites yourselves compare the skin of your faces with
that of your bodies." This brought to my remembrance that, on my return
from Turkey, when I quitted the turban, half my forehead above the
eyebrows was almost like bronze, while the other half next the hair was
as white as paper. If, as natural philosophy demonstrates, there be no
color but what originates from light, it is evident that the different
complexions of people are owing entirely to the various modifications of
this fluid with other elements that act on our skin, and even compose
its substance. Sooner or later it will be proved that the blackness of
the African has no other source.--P. 408.

"Vespuce décrit les indigènes du Nouveau Continent dans sa première
lettre comme des hommes à face large et à physionomie _tartare_, dont la
couleur rougeâtre n'étoit due qu'à l'habitude de ne pas être vêtus. Il
revient à cette même opinion en examinant les Brésiliens." (Canovai, p.
87, 90.) "Leur teint, dit il, est rougeâtre, ce qui vient de leur nudité
absolue et de l'ardeur du soleil auquel ils sont constamment exposés.
Cette erreur a été partagée par un des voyageurs modernes les plus
spirituels, mais des plus systématiques, par Volney." (_Essai Politique
sur la Mexique._) Humboldt's _Géog. du Nouv. Continent_, vol. v., p.

[Footnote 210: On the influence of humidity much stress has been laid by
M. D'Orbigny and Sir R. Schomburgh, each of whom has made the remark as
the result of personal and independent observation on the inhabitants of
the New World, that people who live under the damp shade of dense and
lofty forests are comparatively fair.]

[Footnote 211: See Appendix, No. XLI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 212: Mr. Jarrold asserts that the negro becomes the most
perfect specimen of the human species, in consequence of his possessing
the coarsest and most impassive integument.--_Anthropologia._]

[Footnote 213: See Appendix, No. XLII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 214: "It is intellectual culture which contributes most to
diversify the features. Barbarous nations have rather a physiognomy of
tribe or horde than one peculiar to such or such an individual. The
savage and civilized man are like those animals of the same species,
several of which rove in the forest, while others connected with us
share in the benefits and evils that accompany civilization. The
varieties of form and color are frequent only in domestic animals. How
great is the difference with respect to mobility of feature and variety
of physiognomy between dogs again become savage in the New World, and
those whose slightest caprices are indulged in the houses of the
opulent. Both in men and animals the emotions of the soul are reflected
in the features; and the features acquire the habit of mobility in
proportion as the emotions of the mind are more frequent, more varied,
and more durable. In every condition of man, it is not the energy or the
transient burst of the passions which give expression to the features;
it is rather that sensibility of the soul which brings us continually
into contact with the external world, multiplies our sufferings and our
pleasures, and reacts at once on the physiognomy, the manners, and the
language. If the variety and mobility of the features embellish the
domain of animated nature, we must admit also that both increase by
civilization without being produced by it alone. In the great family of
nations, no other race unites these advantages to a higher degree than
that of Caucasus or the European. It must be admitted that this
insensibility of the features is not peculiar to every race of men of a
very dark complexion: it is much less apparent in the African than in
the natives of America."--Humboldt's _Personal Narrative_, vol. iii., p.

[Footnote 215: Tacitus, in his speculations on the peopling of Britain,
distinguishes very beautifully between what may belong to the ultimate
influences of the country, and what may pertain to an old, unalterable
type in the immigrated race. "Britanniam qui mortales initio coluerunt,
indigenæ an advecti, ut inter barbaros, parum compertum. Habitus
corporis varii, atque ex eo argumenta; namque rutilæ Caledoniam
habitantium comæ, magni artus Germanicam originem adseverant. Silurum
colorati vultus et torti plerumque crines, et posita contra Hispania,
Iberos veteres trajecisse, easque sedes occupâsse fidem faciunt: proximi
Gallis et similes sunt, seu durante originis vi; seu, procurrentibus in
divisa terris, positio coeli corporibus habitum dedit."--_Agricola_,
cap. ii.

"No ancient author has so clearly stated the two forms of reasoning by
which we still explain in our days the differences of color and figure
among neighboring nations as Tacitus. He makes a just distinction
between the influence of climate and hereditary dispositions, and, like
a philosopher persuaded of our profound ignorance of the origin of
things, leaves the question undecided."--Humboldt's _Personal

[Footnote 216: See Smith on _The Variety of Complexion of the Human

[Footnote 217: Mr. Lawrence's precise definition is "an obscure orange
or rusty-iron color, not unlike the bark of the cinnamon-tree." Among
the early discoverers, Vespucius applies to them the epithet
"rougeâtre." Verazzano says, "sono di color berrettini e non molto dalli
Saracini differenti."]

[Footnote 218: Cook's Narrative calls their color an _effete_ white,
like that of the southern nations of Europe. Meares expressly says that
some of the females, when cleaned, were found to have the fair
complexions of Europe.

Somewhat further north, at Cloak Bay, in lat. 54° 10', Humboldt remarks,
that "in the midst of copper-colored Indians, with small, long eyes,
there is a tribe with large eyes, European features, and a skin less
dark than that of our peasantry."--_New Spain_, vol. i., p. 145.

Humboldt considers this as the strongest argument of an original
diversity of race which has remained unaffected by climate.]

[Footnote 219: See Appendix. No. XLV. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 220: Cochrane's _Pedestrian Journey_.]

[Footnote 221: Prescott remarks, that the progress made by the Mexicans
in astronomy, and especially the fact of their having a general board
for education and the fine arts, proves more in favor of their
advancement than the noble architectural monuments which they and their
kindred tribes erected. "Architecture," he observes, "is a sensual
gratification, and addresses itself to the eye; it is the form in which
the resources of a semi-civilized people are most likely to be
lavished."--_Conquest of Mexico_, vol. i., p. 155; Lyell's _America_,
vol. i., p. 115.]

[Footnote 222: Dans les régions anciennement agricoles de l'Amérique
méridionale les conquérans Européens n'ont fait que suivre les traces
d'une culture indigène. Les Indiens sont restés attachés au sol qu'ils
ont défriché depuis des siècles. Le Mexique seul compte un million sept
cent mille indigènes de race pure, dont le nonbre augmente avec la même
rapidité que celui des autres castes. Au Mexique, à Guatemala, à Quito,
au Pérou, à Bolivia, la physionomie du pays, à l'exception de quelques
grandes villes, est essentiellement Indienne; dans les campagnes la
varieté des langues s'est conservée avec les moeurs, le costume et les
habitudes de la vie domestiqne. Il n'y a de plus que des troupeaux de
vaches et de brebis, quelques céreales nouvelles et les cérémonies d'une
culte qui se mêlé à d'antiques superstitions locales. Il faut avoir vécu
dans les hautes plaines de l'Amérique Espagnole ou dans la conféderation
Anglo-Américain pour sentir vivement combien ce contraste entre des
peuples chasseurs et des peuples agricoles, entre des pays longtemps
barbares ou des pays offrant d'anciennes institutions politiques et une
législation indigène très developpée, a facilité ou entravé la conquête,
influé sur les formes des premiers établissement européens, conservé
même de nos jours aux différentes parties de l'Amérique indépendante, un
caractère ineffaçable. Déjà le père Joseph Acosta qui a étudié sur les
lieux mêmes les suites du grand drame sanguinaire de la conquête a bien
saisi ces différences frappantes de civilisation progressive et
d'absence entière d'ordre social qu'offrait le nouveau-monde à l'époque
de Christopher Colomb, ou peu de tems après la colonisation par les
Espagnols.--_Hist. Nat. y Moral._ lib. vi., cap. ii.; Humboldt's
_Géographie du Nouveau Continent_, tom. i., p. 130.]

[Footnote 223: See Appendix, No. XLVI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 224: "In both Americas it is a matter of inquiry what was the
intention of the natives when they raised so many artificial hills,
several of which appear to have served neither as mounds, nor
watch-towers, nor the base of a temple. A custom established in Eastern
Asia may throw some light on this important question. Two thousand three
hundred years before our era, sacrifices were offered in China to the
Supreme Being, Chan-Ty, on four great mountains called the Four Yo. The
sovereigns, finding it inconvenient to go thither in person, caused
eminences representing these mountains to be erected by the hands of men
near their habitations."--_Voyage of Lord Macartney_, vol. i., p. 58;
Hager, _Monument of Yu_, p. 10, 1802.]

[Footnote 225: Mr. Flint asserts, "that the greatest population clearly
has been in those positions where the most dense future population will
be."--P. 166.]

[Footnote 226: "The bones of animals and snakes have sometimes been
found mixed with human bones in these tumuli, and out of one near
Cincinnati were dug two large marine shells, one of which was the
_Cassis cornulus_ of the Asiatic islands, the other the _Fulgur
perversus_ of the coast of Georgia and East Florida; and this is an
additional argument used in favor of the alleged intercourse existing
anciently between the Indians of this part of North America and the
inhabitants of Asia, and between them and those of the Atlantic. Many
circumstances still existing give probability to the popular belief that
the American Indians had their origin in Asia. In their persons, color,
and reserved disposition, they have a strong resemblance to the Malays
of the Oriental Archipelago--that is to say, to some of the Tartar
tribes of Upper Asia; and it is a remarkable circumstance, that, like
those, they shave the head, leaving only a single lock of hair. The
picture language of the Mexicans, as corresponding with the ancient
picture language of China, and the quipos of Peru with the knotted and
party-colored cords which the Chinese history informs us were in use in
the early period of the empire, may also be adduced as corroborative
evidence. The high cheek bones and the elongated eye of the two people,
besides other personal resemblances, suggest the probability of a common
origin."--_Quarterly Review_, No. LVII., p. 13.

"The Iroquois and Hurons made hieroglyphic paintings on wood, which bear
a striking resemblance to those of the Mexicans."--Lafitau, vol. ii., p.
43, 225; La Houtan, p. 193.

"A long struggle between two religious sects, the Brahmans and the
Buddhists, terminated by the emigration of the Chamans to Thibet.
Mongolia, China, and Japan. If tribes of the Tartar race have passed
over to the northwest coast of America, and thence to the south and the
east, toward the banks of Gila, and those of the Missouri, as
etymological researches serve to indicate, we should be less surprised
at finding among the semi-barbarous nations of the New Continent idols
and monuments of architecture, a hieroglyphical writing, and exact
knowledge of the duration of the year, and traditions respecting the
first state of the world, recalling to our minds the arts, the sciences,
and religious opinions of the Asiatic nations."--Humboldt's

In his description of a Mexican painting, Humboldt observes, "The slave
on the left is like the figure of those saints which we see frequently
in Hindoo paintings, and which the navigator Roblet found on the
northwest coast of America, among the hieroglyphical paintings of the
natives of Cox's Channel."--Merchant's _Voyage_, vol. i., p. 312.

"It is probably by philosophical and antiquarian researches in Tartary
that the history of those civilized nations of North America, of whose
great works only the wreck remains, will alone be elucidated."--See
Bancroft's _History of the United States_, vol. iii., chap. xxii.; and
Stephens's _Central America_, vol. i., p. 96; vol. ii., chap, xxvi., p.
186, 357, 413, 433. See Appendix, No. XLVII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 227: "The five nations were the Mohawks, the Oneidas, the
Cayugas, the Onondagas, and the Senecas. The Dutch called them Maquas,
the French Iroquois; their appellation at home was the Mingoes, and
sometimes the Aganuschion, or United People."--Governor Clinton's
_Discourse before New York Historical Society_, 1811.

The Iroquois have often, among Europeans, been termed the Romans of the
West. "Le nom d'Iroquois est purement françois, et a été forme du terme
_Hiro_, qui signifie, _J'ai dit_, par lequel ces sauvages finissent tout
leur discours, comme les Latins faisaient autrefois par leur _Dixi_; et
_de Koué_, qui est un cri, tantôt de tristesse, lorsqu' on le prononce
en traînant, et tantôt de joie, lorsqu'on le prononce plus court. Leur
nom propre est Agonnonsionni, qui veut dire, _Faiseurs de Cabannes_;
parcequ'ils les bâtissent beaucoup plus solides, que la plupart des
autres sauvages."--Charlevoix, tom. i., p. 421.

Lafitau gives the Iroquois the same name of Agonnonsionni; they used to
say of themselves that the five nations of which they were composed
formed but one "Cabane."]

[Footnote 228: "Le Père Brebeuf comptoit environ trente mille âmes de
vrais Hurons, distribués en vingt villages de la nation. Il y avoit
outre cela, douze nations sédentaires et nombreuses, qui parloient leur
langue. La plupart de ces nations ne subsistent plus, les Iroquois ces
ont detruites. Les vrais Hurons sont réduits aujourd'hui à la petite
mission de Lorette, qui est près de Quebec, où l'on voit le
Christianisme fleurir avec l'édification de tous les Français, à la
nation des Tionnontatès qui sont établis au Détroit, et à une autre
nation qui s'est refugiée à la Carolina."--Charlevoix, 1721.

"The Tionnontatès mentioned above now bear the name of Wyandots, and are
a striking exception to the degeneracy which usually attends the
intercourse of Indians with Europeans. The Wyandots have all the energy
of the savage warrior, with the intelligence and docility of civilized
troops. They are Christians, and remarkable for orderly and inoffensive
conduct; but as enemies, they are among the most dreadful of their race.
They were all mounted (in the war of 1812-13), fearless, active,
enterprising; to contend with them in the forest was hopeless, and to
avoid their pursuit, impossible.

"It is worthy of remark, that the Wyandots are the only part of the
Huron nation who ever joined in alliance with the English. The mass of
the Hurons were always the faithful friends of the French during the
times of the early settlement of Canada."--_Quarterly Review_.]

[Footnote 229: The extremes of heat and cold are as unfavorable to
intellectual as to physical superiority,[230] a fact which may be easily
traced throughout the vast and varied extent of the two Americas. "As
far as the parallel of 53°, the temperature of the northwest coast of
America is milder than that of the eastern coasts: we are led to expect,
therefore, that civilization had anciently made some progress in this
climate, and even in higher latitudes. Even in our own times, we
perceive that in the 59th degree of latitude, in Cox's Channel and
Norfolk Sound, the natives have a decided taste for hieroglyphical
paintings on wood."--Humboldt _on the Ancient Inhabitants of America_.

It has been ascertained that this western coast is populous, and the
race somewhat superior to the other Indians in arts and
civilization.--Ramusio, tom. iii., p. 297-303; Venegas's _California_,
Part ii., §ii.

"From the happy coincidence of various circumstances, man raises himself
to a certain degree of cultivation, even in climates the least favorable
to the development of organized beings. Near the polar circle, in
Iceland, in the twelfth century, we know the Scandinavians cultivated
literature and the arts with more success than the inhabitants of
Denmark and Prussia."--Humboldt.]

[Footnote 230: The most temperate climate lies between the 40th and 50th
degree of latitude, and it produces the most handsome and beautiful
people. It is from this climate that the ideas of the genuine color of
mankind and of the various degrees of beauty ought to be derived. The
two extremes are equally remote from truth and from beauty. The
civilized countries situated under this zone are Georgia, Circassia, the
Ukraine, Turkey in Europe, Hungary, the south of Germany, Italy,
Switzerland, France, and the northern parts of Spain. The natives of
these territories are the most handsome and most beautiful people in the
world.--Buffon, English trans., vol. iii., p. 205.]

[Footnote 231: Mr. Flint says. "I have inspected the northern, middle,
and southern Indians for a length of ten years; my opportunities of
observation have, therefore, been considerable, and I do not undertake
to form a judgment of their character without, at least, having seen
much of it. I have been forcibly struck by a general resemblance in
their countenance, make, conformation, manners, and habits. I believe
that no race of men can show people who speak different languages,
inhabit different climes, and subsist on different food, and who are yet
so wonderfully alike."--(1831.)

Don Antonio Ulloa, who had extensive opportunities of forming an opinion
on the natives of both the continents of America, asserts that "If we
have seen one American, we may be said to have seen all, their color and
make are so nearly the same."--_Notic. Americanas_, p. 308. See,
likewise, Garcia, _Origin de los Indios_, p. 55-242; Torquemada,
_Monarch. Indiana_, vol. ii., p. 571.

"If we except the northern regions, where we find men similar to the
Laplanders, all the rest of America is peopled with inhabitants among
whom there is little or no diversity. This great uniformity among the
natives of America seems to proceed from their living all in the same
manner. All the Americans were, or still are, savages; the Mexicans and
Peruvians were so recently polished that they ought not to be regarded
as an exception. Whatever, therefore, was the origin of those savages,
it seems to have been common to the whole. All the Americans have sprung
from the same source, and have preserved, with little variation, the
characters of their race; for they have all continued in a savage state,
and have followed nearly the same mode of life. Their climates are not
so unequal with regard to heat and cold as those of the ancient
continent, and their establishment in America has been too recent to
allow those causes which produce varieties sufficient time to operate so
as to render their effects conspicuous."--Buffon, Eng. trans., vol.
iii., p. 188.]

[Footnote 232: See Appendix, No. XLVIII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 233: See Appendix, No. XLIX. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 234: There would never have been any difference of opinion
between physiologists, as to the existence of the beard among the
Americans, if they had paid attention to what the first historians of
the conquest of their country have said on this subject; for example,
Pigafetta, in 1519, in his Journal preserved in the Ambrosian library at
Milan, and published (in 1800) by Amoretti, p. 18.--Benzoni, _Hist. del
Mundo Nuovo_, p. 35, 1572; Bembo, _Hist. Venet._, p. 86, 1557;
Humboldt's _Personal Narrative_, vol. iii., p. 235.

"The Indians have no beard, because they use certain receipts to
extirpate it, which they will not communicate."--Oldmixon, vol. i., p.

"Experience has made known that these receipts were little shells which
they used as tweezers; since they have become acquainted with metals,
they have invented an instrument consisting of a piece of brass wire
rolled round a piece of wood the size of the finger, so as to form a
special spring; this grasps the hairs within its turns, and pulls out
several at once. No wonder if this practice, continued for several
generations, should enfeeble the roots of the beard. Did the practice of
eradicating the beard, originate from the design of depriving the enemy
of such a dangerous hold on the face? This seems to me probable."--Volney,
p. 412.]

[Footnote 235: When the statue of Apollo Belvedere was shown to Benjamin
West on his first arrival at Rome, he exclaimed, "It is a model from a
young North American Indian."--_Ancient America._]

[Footnote 236: "It is a notorious fact, that every European who has
embraced the savage life has become stronger and better inured to every
excess than the savages themselves. The superiority of the people of
Virginia and Kentucky over them has been confirmed, not only in troop
opposed to troop, but man to man, in all their wars."--Volney, p. 417.]

[Footnote 237: Yet infanticide is condemned among the Red Indians both
by their theology and their feelings. Dr. Richardson relates that those
tribes who hold the idea that "the souls of the departed have to
scramble up a great mountain, at whose top they receive the reward of
their good or bad deeds, declare that women who have been guilty of
infanticide never reach the top of this mountain at all. They are
compelled instead to travel around the scenes of their crimes with
branches of trees tied to their legs. The melancholy sounds which are
heard in the still summer evenings, and which the ignorance of the white
people looks upon as the screams of the goat-suckers, are really,
according to my informant, the moanings of these unhappy
beings"--Franklin's _Journey to the Polar Seas_, p. 77, 78.]


The Indian is endowed with a far greater acuteness of sense than the
European. Despite the dazzling brightness of the long-continued snows,
and the injurious action of the smoke of burning wood to which he is
constantly exposed, he possesses extraordinary quickness of sight. He
can also hear and distinguish the faintest sounds, alike through the
gentle rustling of the forest leaves and in the roar of the storm; his
power of smell is so delicate that he scents fire long before it becomes
visible. By some peculiar instinct the Indian steers through the
trackless forests, over the vast prairies, and even across wide sheets
of water with unerring certainty. Under the gloomiest and most obscure
sky, he can follow the course of the sun[238] as if directed by a
compass. These powers would seem innate in this mysterious race; they
can scarcely be the fruit of observation or practice, for children who
have never left their native village can direct their course through
pathless solitudes as accurately as the experienced hunter.

In the early stages of social progress, when the life of man is rude and
simple, the reason is little exercised, and his wants and wishes are
limited within narrow bounds; consequently, his intellect is feebly
developed, and his emotions are few but concentrated. These conditions
were generally observable among the rudest tribes of the American

There are, however, some very striking peculiarities in the intellectual
character of the Red Men. Without any aid from letters or education,
some of the lower mental faculties are developed in a remarkable degree.
As orators, strategists, and politicians, they have frequently exhibited
very great power.[240] They are constantly engaged in dangerous and
difficult enterprises, where ingenuity and presence of mind are
essential for their preservation. They are vigorous in the thought which
is allied to action, but altogether incapable of speculation, deduction,
or research. The ideas and attention of a savage are confined to the
objects relating to his subsistence, safety, or indulgence: every thing
else escapes his observation or excites little interest in his mind.
Many tribes appear to make no arrangement for the future; neither care
nor forethought prevents them from blindly following a present impulse,
regardless of its consequences.

The natives of North America were divided into a number of small
communities; in the relation of these to each other, war or negotiation
was constantly carried on; revolutions, conquests, and alliances
frequently occurred among them. To raise the power of his tribe, and to
weaken or destroy that of his enemy, was the great aim of every Indian.
For these objects schemes were profoundly laid, and deeds of daring
valor achieved: the refinements of diplomacy were employed, and plans
arranged with the most accurate calculation. These peculiar
circumstances also developed the power of oratory to an extraordinary
degree.[241] Upon all occasions of importance, speeches were delivered
with eloquence, and heard with deep attention. When danger threatened,
or opportunity of aggrandizement or revenge offered itself, a council of
the tribe was called, where those most venerable from age and
illustrious for wisdom deliberated for the public good. The composition
of the Indian orator is studied and elaborate; the language is vigorous,
and, at the same time, highly imaginative; all ideas are expressed by
figures addressed to the senses; the sun and stars, mountains and
rivers, lakes and forests, hatchets of war and pipes of peace, fire and
water, are employed as illustrations of his subject with almost Oriental
art and richness. His eloquence is unassisted by action or varied
intonation, but his earnestness excites the sympathy of the audience,
and his persuasion sinks into their hearts.[242]

The want of any written or hieroglyphic records of the past among the
Northern Indians was, to some extent, supplied by the accurate memories
of their old men; they were able to repeat speeches of four or five
hours' duration, and delivered many years before, without error or even
hesitation, and to hand them down from generation to generation with
equal accuracy, their recollection being only assisted by small pieces
of wood corresponding to the different subjects of discourse. On great
and solemn occasions, belts of wampum were used as aid to recollection
whenever a conference was held with a neighboring tribe, or a treaty or
compact is negotiated. One of these belts, differing in some respects
from any other hitherto used, was made for the occasion; each person who
speaks holds this in his hand by turns, and all he says is recorded in
the "living books" of the by-standers' memory in connection with the
belt. When the conference ends, this memorial is deposited in the hands
of the principal chief. As soon as any important treaty is ratified, a
broad wampum belt of unusual splendor is given by each contracting party
to the other, and these tokens are deposited among the other belts, that
form, as it were, the archives of the nation. At stated intervals they
are reproduced before the people, and the events which they commemorate
are circumstantially recalled. Certain of the Indian women are intrusted
with the care of these belts: it is their duty to relate to the children
of the tribe the circumstances of each treaty or conference, and thus is
kept alive the remembrance of every important event.

On the matters falling within his limited comprehension, the Indian
often displays a correct and solid judgment; he pursues his object
without hesitation or diversion. He is quickly perceptive of simple
facts or ideas, but any artificial combination, or mechanical
contrivance he is slow to comprehend, especially as he considers every
thing beneath his notice which is not necessary to his advantage or
enjoyment. It is very difficult to engage him in any labor of a purely
mental character, but he often displays vivacity and ardor in matters
that interest him, and is frequently quick and happy in repartee.[243]

The Red Man is usually characterized by a certain savage elevation of
soul and calm self-possession, that all the aid of religion and
philosophy can not enable his civilized brethren to surpass. Master of
his emotions, the expression of his countenance rarely alters for a
moment even under the most severe and sudden trials. The prisoner,
uncertain as to the fate that may befall him, preparing for his dreadful
death, or racked by agonizing tortures, still raises his unfaltering
voice in the death song, and turns a fearless front toward his

The art of numbering was unknown in some American tribes, and even among
the most advanced it was very imperfect; the savage had no property to
estimate, no coins to count, no variety of ideas to enumerate. Many
nations could not reckon above three, and had no words in their language
to distinguish a greater number; some proceeded as far as ten, others to
twenty; when they desired to convey an idea of a larger amount, they
pointed to the hair of the head, or declared that it could not be
counted. Computation is a mystery to all rude nations; when, however,
they acquire the knowledge of a number of objects, and find the
necessity of combining or dividing them, their acquaintance with
arithmetic increases; the state of this art is therefore, to a
considerable extent, a criterion of their degree of progress. The wise
and politic Iroquois had advanced the farthest, but even they had not
got beyond one thousand; the smaller tribes seldom reached above ten.

The first ideas are suggested to the mind of man by the senses: the
Indian acquires no other. The objects around him are all important; if
they be available for his present purposes, they attract his attention,
otherwise they excite no curiosity: he neither combines nor arranges
them, nor does he examine the operations of his own mind upon them; he
has no abstract or universal ideas, and his reasoning powers are
generally employed upon matters merely obvious to the senses. In the
languages of the ruder tribes there were no words to express any thing
that is not material, such as faith, time, imagination, and the like.
When the mind of the savage is not occupied with matters relating to his
animal existence, it is altogether inactive. In the islands, and upon
the exuberant plains of the south, where little exertion of ingenuity
was required to obtain the necessaries of life, the rational faculties
were frequently dormant, and the countenance remained vacant and
inexpressive. Even the superior races of the north loiter away their
time in thoughtless indolence, when not engaged in war or the chase,
deeming other objects unworthy of their consideration. Where reason is
so limited in a field for exertion, the mind can hardly acquire any
considerable degree of vigor or enlargement. In civilized life men are
urged to activity and perseverance by a desire to gratify numerous
artificial wants; but the necessities of the Indian are few, and
provided for by nature almost spontaneously. He detests labor, and will
sometimes sit for whole days together without uttering a word or
changing his posture. Neither the hope of reward nor the prospect of
future want can overcome this inveterate indolence.

Among the northern tribes, however, dwelling under a rigorous climate,
some efforts are employed, and some precautions taken, to procure
subsistence; but the necessary industry is even there looked upon as a
degradation: the greater part of the labor is performed by women, and
man will only stoop to those portions of the work which he considers
least ignominious. This industry, so oppressive to one half of the
community, is very partial, and directed by a limited foresight. During
one part of the year they depend upon fishing for a subsistence, during
another upon the chase, and the produce of the ground is their resource
for the third. Regardless of the warnings of experience, they neglect to
apportion provision for their wants, or can so little restrain their
appetites, that, from imprudence or extravagance, they often are exposed
to the miseries of famine like their ruder neighbors. Their sufferings
are soon forgotten, and the horrors of one year seem to teach no lesson
of providence for the next.

The Indians, for the most part, are very well acquainted with the
geography of their own country. When questioned as to the situation of
any particular place, they will trace out on the ground with a stick, if
opportunity offer, a tolerably accurate map of the locality indicated.
They will show the course of the rivers, and, by pointing toward the
sun, explain the bearings of their rude sketch. There have been recorded
some most remarkable instances of the accuracy with which they can
travel toward a strange place, even when its description had only been
received through the traditions of several generations, and they could
have possessed no personal knowledge whatever of the surrounding

The religion of the natives of America can not but be regarded with an
interest far deeper than the gratification of mere curiosity. The forms
of faith, the rites, the ideas of immortality; the belief in future
reward, in future punishment; the recognition of an invisible Power,
infinitely surpassing that of the warrior or the chief; the dim
traditions of a first parent, and a general deluge--all these, among a
race so long isolated from the rest of the human family, distinct in
language, habits, form, and mind, and displaying, when societies began
to exist, a civilization utterly dissimilar from any before known,
afford subject for earnest thought and anxious inquiry. Those who in the
earlier times of American discovery supplied information on these
points, were generally little qualified for the task. Priests and
missionaries alone had leisure or inclination to pursue the subject;
and their minds were often so preoccupied with their own peculiar
doctrines, that they accommodated to them all that fell under their
observation, and explained it by analogies which had no existence but in
their own zealous imaginations. They seldom attempted to consider what
they saw or heard in relation to the rude notions of the savages
themselves. From a faint or fancied similarity of peculiar Indian
superstitions to certain articles of Christian faith, some missionaries
imagined they had discovered traces of an acquaintance with the divine
mysteries of salvation: they concluded that the savage possessed a
knowledge of the doctrine of the Trinity,[247] of the Incarnation, of
the sacrifice of a Saviour, and of sacraments, from their own
interpretation of certain expressions and ceremonies.[248] But little
confidence can be placed in any evidence derived from such sources.

The earlier travelers in the interior of the New World received the
impression that the Indians had no religious belief; they saw neither
priests, temples, idols, nor sacrifices among any of the various and
numerous tribes. A further knowledge of this strange people disproved
the hastily-formed opinion, and showed that their whole life and all
their actions were influenced by a belief in the spiritual world.[249]
It is now known that the American Indians were pre-eminent among savage
nations for the superior purity of their religious faith,[250] and,
indeed, over even the boasted elegance of poetical mythology. From the
reports of all those worthy of credence, who have lived intimately among
these children of the forest, it is certain that they firmly believe in
the power and unity of the Most High God, and in an immortality of
happiness or misery. They worship the Great Spirit, the Giver of life,
and attribute to him the creation of the world, and the government of
all things with infinite love, wisdom, and power. Of the origin of their
religion they are altogether ignorant. In general they believe that,
after the world was created and supplied with animal life by the Great
Spirit, he formed the first red man and woman, who were very large of
stature, and lived to an extreme old age; that he often held council
with his creatures, gave them laws and instructed them, but that the red
children became rebels against their Great Father, and he then withdrew
himself in sorrowful anger from among them, and left them to the
vexations of the Bad Spirit. But still this merciful Father, from afar
off, where he may be seen no more, showers down upon them all the
blessings they enjoy. The Indians are truly filial and sincere in their
devotions; they pray for what they need, and return hearty thanks for
such mercies as they have enjoyed.[251] They supplicate him to bestow
courage and skill upon them in the battle; the endurance which enables
them to mock the cruel tortures of their enemies is attributed to his
aid; their preparation for war is a long-continued religious ceremony;
their march is supposed to be under omnipotent guidance, and their
expeditions in the chase are held to be not unworthy of divine
superintendence. They reject all idea of chance on the fortune of war,
and believe firmly that every result is the decision of a Superior
Power.[252] Although this elevated conception of the One God[253] is
deeply impressed upon the Indian's mind, it is tainted with some of the
alloy which ever must characterize the uninspired faith. Those who have
inquired into the religious opinions of the uneducated and laborious
classes of men, even in the most enlightened and civilized communities,
find that their system of belief is derived from instruction, and not
from instinct or the results of their own examination: in savage life
it is vain to expect that men should reason accurately, from cause to
effect, and form a just idea of the Creator from the creation. The
Indian combines the idea of the Great Spirit with others of a less
perfect nature. The word used by him to indicate this Sovereign Being
does not convey the notion of an immaterial nature; it signifies with
him some one possessed of lofty and mysterious powers, and in this sense
may be applied to men and even to animals.

To the first inquirers into the religious faith of the native Americans,
the subject of their mythology presented very great difficulties and
complications; those Indians who attempted to explain it to Europeans
had themselves no distinct or fixed opinions. Each man put forward
peculiar notions, and was constantly changing them, without attempting
to reconcile his self-contradictions.

Some of the southern tribes, who were more settled in their religious
faith, exhibited a remarkable degree of bigotry and spiritual pride.
They called the Europeans "men of the accursed speech," while they
styled themselves "the beloved of the Great Spirit." The Canadian and
other northern nations, however, were less intolerant, and at any time
easily induced to profess the recantation of their heathen errors for
some small advantage. Among these latter, the hare was deemed to possess
some mystic superiority over the rest of the animal creation; it was
even raised to be an object of worship, and the Great Hare was
confounded in their minds with the Great Spirit. The Algonquins believed
in a Water God, who opposes himself to the benevolent designs of the
Great Spirit; it is strange that the name of the Great Tiger should be
given to this Deity, as the country does not produce such an animal, and
from this it appears probable that the tradition of his existence had
come from elsewhere. They have also a third Deity, who presides over
their winter season. The gods of the Indians have bodies like the sons
of men, and subsist in like manner with them, but are free from the
pains and cares of mortality; the term "spirit" among them only
signifies a being of a superior and more excellent nature than man.
However, they believe in the omnipresence of their deities, and invoke
their aid in all times and places.

Besides the Great Spirit and the lesser deities above mentioned, every
Indian has his own Manitou, Okki, or guardian power; this divinity's
presence is represented by some portable object, often of the most
insignificant nature, such as the head, beak, or claw of a bird, the
hoof of a deer or cow. No youth can be received among the brotherhood of
warriors till he has placed himself, in due form, under the care of this
familiar. The ceremony is deemed of great importance: several days of
strict fasting are always observed in preparation for the important
event, and the youth's dreams are carefully noted during this period.
While under these circumstances, some object usually makes a deep
impression upon his mind; this is then chosen for his Manitou or
guardian spirit, and a specimen, of it is procured. He is next placed
for some time in a large vapor bath, and having undergone the process of
being steamed, is laid on the ground, and the figure of the Manitou is
pricked on his breast with needles of fish-bone dipped in vermilion; the
intervals between the scars are then rubbed with gunpowder, so as to
produce a mixture of red and blue. When this operation is performed, he
cries aloud to the Great Spirit, invoking aid, and praying to be
received as a warrior.

The Indian submits with resignation to the chastening will of the Great
Spirit. When overtaken by any disaster, he diligently examines himself
to discover what omission of observance or duty has called down the
punishment, and endeavors to atone for past neglect by increased
devotion. But if the Manitou be deemed to have shown want of ability or
inclination to defend him, he upbraids the guardian power with
bitterness and contempt, and threatens to seek a more effectual
protector. If the Manitou continue useless, this threat is fulfilled.
Fasting and dreaming are again resorted to in the same manner as before,
and the vision of another Manitou is obtained. The former representation
is then, as much as possible, effaced, and the figure of the
newly-adopted amulet painted in its place. All the veneration and
confidence forfeited by the first Manitou is now transferred to the

It is also part of the Indian's religious belief that there are inferior
spirits to rule over the elements, under the control of the Supreme
Power, he being so great that he must, like their chiefs, have
attendants to execute his behests. These inferior spirits see what
passes on earth, and report it to their Great Ruler: the Indian,
trusting to their good offices, invokes those spirits of the air in
times of peril, and endeavors to propitiate them by throwing tobacco or
other simple offerings to the winds or upon the waters. But, amid all
these corrupt and ignorant superstitions, the One Spirit, the Creator
and Ruler of the World, is the great object of the Red Man's adoration.
On him they rest their hopes; to him they address their daily prayers,
and render their solemn sacrifice.

The worship of the Indians, although frequently in private, is generally
little regulated either by ceremonies or stated periodical devotions.
But there are, at times, great occasions, when the whole tribe assembles
for the purpose,[255] such as in declaring war or proclaiming peace, or
when visited by storms or earthquakes. Their great feasts all partake of
a religious character; every thing provided must be consumed by the
assembly, as being consecrated to the Great Spirit. The Ottawas seem to
have had a more complicated mythology than any other tribe: they held a
regular festival in honor of the sun; and, while rendering thanks for
past benefit, prayed that it might be continued to the future. They have
also been observed to erect an idol in their village, and offer it
sacrifice: this ceremony was, however, very rare. Many Western tribes
visit the spring whence they have been supplied with water during the
winter, at the breaking up of the ice, and there offer up their grateful
worship to the Great Spirit for having preserved them in health and
safety, and having supplied their wants. This pious homage is performed
with much ceremony and devotion.

Among this rude people, who were at one time supposed to have been
without any religion, habitual piety may be considered the most
remarkable characteristic: every action of their lives is connected with
some acknowledgment of a Superior Power. Many have imagined that the
severe fasts sometimes endured by the Indians were only for the purpose
of accustoming themselves to support hunger; but all the circumstances
connected with these voluntary privations leave no doubt that they were
solemn religious exercises. Dreams and visions during these fasts were
looked upon as oracular, and respected as the revelations of Heaven. The
Indian frequently propitiates the favor of the inferior spirits by vows;
when for some time unsuccessful in the chase, or suffering from want in
long journeys, he promises the genius of the spot to bestow upon one of
his chiefs, in its honor, a portion of the first fruits of his
success;[256] if the chief be too distant to receive the gift, it is
burned in sacrifice.

The belief of the Indian in a future state, although deeply cherished
and sincere, can scarcely be regarded as a defined idea of the
immortality of the soul.[257] There is little spiritual or exalted in
his conception. When he attempts to form a distinct notion of the
spirit, he is blinded by his senses; he calls it the shadow or image of
his body, but its acts and enjoyments are all the same as those of its
earthly existence. He only pictures to himself a continuation of present
pleasures. His Heaven is a delightful country, far away beyond the
unknown Western seas, where the skies are ever bright and serene, the
air genial, the spring eternal, and the forests abounding in game; no
war, disease, or torture are known in that happy land; the sufferings of
life are endured no more, and its sweetest pleasures are perpetuated and
increased; his wife is tender and obedient, his children dutiful and
affectionate. In this country of eternal happiness, the Indian hopes to
be again received into the favor of the Great Spirit, and to rejoice in
his glorious presence.[258] But in his simple mind there is a deep and
enduring conviction that admission to this delightful country of souls
can only be attained by good and noble actions in this mortal life. For
the bad men there is a fate terribly different--endless afflictions,
want, and misery; a land of hideous desolation; barren, parched, and
dreary hunting-grounds, the abode of evil and malignant spirits, whose
office is to torture, whose pleasure is to enhance the misery of the
condemned. It is also almost universally believed that the Great Spirit
manifests his wrath or his favor to the evil and the good in their
journey to the land of souls. After death the Indian believes that he is
supplied with a canoe; and if he has been a virtuous warrior, or
otherwise worthy, he is guided across the vast deep to a haven of
eternal happiness and peace by the hand of the Great Spirit; but if his
life be stained with cowardice, vice, or negligence of duty, he is
abandoned to the malignity of evil genii, driven about by storms and
darkness over that unknown sea, and at length cast ashore on the barren
land, where everlasting torments are his portion.[259]

The Indians generally believe in the existence of a Spirit of Evil, and
occasionally pray to him in deprecation of his wrath. They do not doubt
his inferiority to the Great Spirit, but they believe that he has the
power to inflict torments and punishments upon the human race, and that
he has a malignant delight in its exercise.

The souls of the lower animals are also held by the Red Man to be
immortal: he recognizes a certain portion of understanding in them, and
each creature is supposed to possess a guardian spirit peculiar to
itself. He only claims a superiority in degree of intelligence and power
over the beasts of the field, Man is but the king of animals. In the
world of souls are to be found the shades of every thing that breathes
the breath of life. However, he takes little pains to arrange or develop
these strange ideas. The enlightened heathen philosophers of antiquity
were not more successful.

To penetrate the mysteries of the future has always been a favorite
object of superstition,[260] and has been attempted by a countless
variety of means. The Indian trusts to his dreams for this revelation,
and invariably holds them sacred. Before he engages in any important
undertaking, particularly in war, diplomacy, or the chase, the dreams of
his principal chiefs are carefully watched and examined; by their
interpretation his conduct is guided. In this manner the fate of a whole
nation has often been decided by the chance visions of a single man. The
Indian considers that dreams are the mode by which the Great Spirit
condescends to hold converse with man; thence arises his deep veneration
for the omens and warnings they may shadow forth.[261]

Many other superstitions, besides those of prognostics from dreams, are
cherished among the Indians. Each remarkable natural feature, such as a
great cataract, a lake, or a difficult and dangerous pass, possesses a
spirit of the spot, whose favor they are fain to propitiate by votive
offerings: skins, bones, pieces of metal, and dead dogs are hung up in
the neighborhood, and dedicated to its honor. Supposed visions of ghosts
are sometimes, but rarely, spoken of: it is, however, generally believed
that the souls of the dead continue for some time to hover round the
earthly remains: dreading, therefore, that the spirits of those they
have tortured watch near them to seek opportunity of vengeance, they
beat the air violently with rods, and raise frightful cries to scare the
shadowy enemy away.

Among some of the Indian tribes, an old man performed the duty of a
priest at their religious festivals; he broke the bread and cast it in
the fire, dedicated the different offerings, and officiated in the
sacrifice. It was also his calling to declare the omens from dreams and
other signs, as the warnings of Heaven. These religious duties of the
priest were totally distinct from the office of the juggler, or
"medicine-man," although some observers have confounded them together.
There were also vestals in many nations of the continent who were
supposed to supply by their touch a precious medicinal efficacy to
certain roots and simples.

The "medicine-men," or jugglers, undertook the cure of diseases, the
interpretation of omens, the exorcising of evil spirits, and magic in
all its branches. They were men of great consideration in the tribe, and
were called in and regularly paid as physicians; but this position could
only be attained by undergoing certain ordeals, which were looked upon
as a compact with the spirits of the air. The process of the vapor bath
was first endured; severe fasting followed, accompanied by constant
shouting, singing, beating a sort of drum, and smoking. After these
preliminaries the jugglers were installed by extravagant ceremonies,
performed with furious excitement and agitation. They possessed,
doubtless, some real knowledge of the healing art; and in external
wounds or injuries, the causes of which are obvious, they applied
powerful simples, chiefly vegetable, with considerable skill. With
decoctions from ginseng, sassafras, hedisaron, and a tall shrub called
bellis, they have been known to perform remarkable cures in cases of
wounds and ulcers. They scarified the seat of inflammation or rheumatic
pain skillfully with sharp-pointed bones, and accomplished the cupping
process by the use of gourd shells as substitutes for glasses. For all
internal complaints, their favorite specific was the vapor bath, which
they formed with much ingenuity from their rude materials. This was
doubtless a very efficient remedy, but they attached to it a
supernatural influence, and employed it in the ceremonies of solemn
preparation for great councils.

All cases of disease, when the cause could not be discovered, were
attributed to the influence of malignant spirits. To meet these, the
medicine-man, or juggler, invested himself with his mysterious
character, and endeavored to exorcise the demon by a great variety of
ceremonies, a mixture of delusion and imposture. For this purpose, he
arrayed himself in a strange and fanciful dress, and on his first
arrival began to sing and dance round the sufferer, invoking the
spirits with loud cries. When exhausted with these exertions, he
attributed the hidden cause of the malady to the first unusual idea that
suggested itself to his mind, and in the confidence of his supposed
inspiration, proclaimed the necessary cure. The juggler usually
contrived to avoid the responsibility of failure by ordering a remedy
impossible of attainment when the patient was not likely to recover. The
Iroquois believed that every ailment was a desire of the soul, and, when
death followed, it was from the desire not having been accomplished.

Among many of the Indian tribes, the barbarous custom of putting to
death those who were thought past recovery, existed, and still exists.
Others abandoned these unfortunates to perish of hunger and thirst, or
under the jaws of the wild beasts of the forest. Some nations put to
death all infants who had lost their mother, or buried them alive in her
grave, under the impression that no other woman could rear them, and
that they must perish by hunger. But the dreadful custom of deserting
the aged and emaciated among the wandering tribes is universal.[262]
When these miserable creatures become incapable of walking or riding,
and there is no means of carrying them, they themselves uniformly insist
upon being abandoned to their fate, saying that they are old and of no
further use--they left their fathers in the same manner--they wish to
die, and their children must not mourn for them. A small fire and a few
pieces of wood, a scanty supply of meat, and perhaps a buffalo skin, are
left as the old man's sole resources. When in a few months the wandering
tribe may revisit the spot where he was deserted, a skull and a few
scattered bones will be all that the wolves and vultures have left as
tokens of his dreadful fate.

The Indian father and mother display great tenderness for their
children,[263] even to the weakness of unlimited indulgence; this
affection, however, appears to be merely instinctive, for they use no
exertion whatever to lead their offspring to the paths of virtue.
Children, on their part, show very little filial affection, and
frequently treat their parents, especially their father, with indignity
and violence. This vicious characteristic is strongly exemplified in the
horrible custom above described.

When the Indian believes that his death is at hand, his conduct is
usually stoical and dignified. If he still retain the power of speech,
he harangues those who surround him in a funeral oration, advising and
encouraging his children, and bidding them and all his friends farewell.
During this time, the relations of the dying man slay all the dogs they
can catch, trusting that the souls of these animals will give notice of
the approaching departure of the warrior for the world of spirits; they
then take leave of him, wish him a happy voyage, and cheer him with the
hope that his children will prove worthy of his name. When the last
moment arrives, all the kindred break into loud lamentations, till some
one high in consideration desires them to cease. For weeks afterward,
however, these cries of grief are daily renewed at sunrise and sunset.
In three days after death the funeral takes place, and the neighbors are
invited to a feast of all the provisions that can be procured, which
must be all consumed. The relations of the deceased do not join in the
banquet; they cut off their hair, cover their heads, blacken their
faces, and for a long time deny themselves every amusement.[264]

The deceased is buried with his arms and ornaments, and a supply of
provisions for his long journey; the face is painted, and the body
arrayed in the richest robes that can be obtained; it is then laid in
the grave in an upright posture, and skins are carefully placed around,
that it may not touch the earth. At stated intervals of eight, ten, or
twelve years, the Indians celebrate the singular ceremony of the
Festival of the Dead; till this has been performed, the souls of the
deceased are supposed still to hover round their earthly remains. At
this solemn festival, the people march in procession to the
burial-ground, open the tombs, and continue for a time gazing on the
moldering relics in mournful silence. Then, while the women raise a loud
wailing, the bones of the dead are carefully collected, wrapped in fresh
and valuable robes, and conveyed to the family cabin.[265] A feast is
then held for several days, with dances, games, and prize combats. The
relics are next carried to the council-house of the nation, where they
are publicly displayed, with the presents destined to be interred with
them. Sometimes the remains are even carried on bearers from village to
village. At length they are laid in a deep pit, lined with rich furs;
tears and lamentations are again renewed, and for some time fresh
provisions are daily laid, by this simple people, upon the graves of
their departed friends.


[Footnote 238: "At night the savages direct their course by the polar
star; they call it the _motionless star_. It is a curious coincidence
that the constellation of the Bear should be called by the savages the
Bear. This is certainly a very ancient name among them, and given long
before any Europeans visited the country. They turn into ridicule the
large imaginary tail which astronomers have given to an animal that has
scarcely any such appendage, and they call the three stars that compose
the tail of the Bear, three hunters who are in pursuit of it. The second
of these stars has a very small one very close to it. This, they say, is
the kettle of the second hunter, who is the bearer of the baggage and
the provision belonging to all three.[239] The savages also call the
Pleiades 'the Dancers,' and Hygin tells us that they were thus called by
the ancients, because they seem, from the arrangement of their stars, to
be engaged in a circular dance."--Lafitau, vol. ii., p. 236. Hygin.,
lib. ii., art. Taurus.]

[Footnote 239: "Even at the present time" (1720), Lafitau writes, "these
three stars are called in Italy, _i tre cavalli_"--the three knights--on
the celestial globe of Caronelli.]

[Footnote 240: See Appendix, No. L. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 241: Charlevoix says that the eloquence of the savages was
such as the Greeks admired in the barbarians, "strong, stern,
sententious, pointed, perfectly undisguised."

Decanesora's oratory was greatly admired by the most cultivated among
the English: his bust was said to resemble that of Cicero. The
celebrated address of Logan is too well known to be cited here. Mr.
Jefferson says of it, "I may challenge the whole orations of Demosthenes
and Cicero, and of any other more eminent orator, if Europe has
furnished more eminent, to produce a single passage superior to the
speech of Logan." An American statesman and scholar, scarcely less
illustrious than the former, has expressed his readiness to subscribe to
this eulogium.--Clinton's _Historical Discourse_, 1811.]

[Footnote 242: Catlin gives the following account of a native preacher,
known by the name of the Shawnee Prophet: "I soon learned that he was a
very devoted Christian, regularly holding meetings in his tribe on the
Sabbath, preaching to them, and exhorting them to a belief in the
Christian religion, and to an abandonment of the fatal habit of
whisky-drinking. I went on the Sabbath to hear this eloquent man preach,
when he had his people assembled in the woods; and although I could not
understand his language, I was surprised and pleased with the natural
case, and emphasis, and gesticulation which carried their own evidence
of the eloquence of his sermon. I was singularly struck with the noble
efforts of this champion of the mere remnant of a poisoned race, so
strenuously laboring to rescue the remainder of his people from the
deadly bane that has been brought among them by enlightened Christians.
It is quite certain that his exemplary endeavors have completely
abolished the practice of drinking whisky in his tribe."--Catlin, vol.
ii., p. 98.]

[Footnote 243: "Whatever may be the estimate of the Indian character in
other respects, it is with me an undoubting conviction, that they are by
nature a shrewd and intelligent race of men, in no wise, as regards
combination of thought or quickness of apprehension, inferior to
uneducated white men. This inference I deduce from having instructed
Indian children.[244] I draw it from having seen the men and women in
all situations calculated to try and call forth their capacities. When
they examine any of our inventions, steamboats, steam-mills, and cotton
factories, for instance; when they contemplate any of our institutions
in operation, by some quick analysis or process of reasoning, they seem
immediately to comprehend the principle or the object. No spectacle
affords them more delight than a large and orderly school. They scorn
instinctively to comprehend, at least they explained to me that they
felt, the advantages which this order of things gave our children over
theirs."--Flint's _Ten Years in the Valley of the Mississippi_, 1831.

Mr. Flint, an experienced and intelligent observer, takes so dark a view
of the moral character of the Red Indian that his favorable opinion of
their mental faculties may be looked upon as probably accurate, though
differing strongly from that more generally held. On the other side of
the question, among the early writers may be cited M. Bouguer, _Voyage
au Pérou_, p. 102; _Voyage d'Ulloa_, tom. i., p. 335-337. "They seem to
live in a perpetual infancy," is the striking expression of De la
Condamine, _Voyage de la Riv. Amazon_, p. 52, 53. Chauvelon, _Voyage à
la Martinique_, p. 44, 50. P. Venegas, _Hist. de la Californie_.]

[Footnote 244: All those who have expressed an opinion on the subject
seem to agree that _children_ of most native races are fully, or more
than a match, for those of Europeans, in aptitude for intellectual
acquirement. Indeed, it appears to be a singular law of Nature, that
there is less precocity in the European race than almost any other. In
those races in which we seem to have reason for believing that the
intellectual organization is lower, perception is quicker, and maturity
earlier.--Merivale _On Colonization_, vol. ii., p. 197.]

[Footnote 245: "Thus, on the whole, it may be said that the virtues of
the savages are reducible to intrepid courage in danger, unshaken
firmness amid tortures, contempt of pain and death, and patience under
all the anxieties and distresses of life. No doubt these are useful
qualities, but they are all confined to the individual, all selfish, and
without any benefit to the society. Farther, they are proofs of a life
truly wretched, and a social state so depraved or null, that a man,
neither finding nor hoping any succor or assistance from it, is obliged
to wrap himself up in despair, and endeavor to harden himself against
the strokes of fate. Still it may be urged that these men, in their
leisure hours, laugh, sing, play, and live without care for the past as
well as for the future. Will you then deny that they are happier than
we? Man is such a pitiable and variable creature, and habits have such a
potent sway over him, that in the most disastrous situations he always
finds some posture that gives him ease, something that consoles him,
and, by comparison with past suffering, appears to him well-being and
happiness; but if to laugh, sing, or play constitute bliss, it must
likewise be granted that soldiers are perfectly happy beings, since
there are no men more careless or more gay in dangers or on the eve of
battle. It must be granted, too, that during the Revolution, in the most
fatal of our jails, the Conciergerie, the prisoners were very happy,
since they were, in general, more careless and gay than their keepers,
or than those who only feared the same fate. The anxieties of those who
were at large were as numerous as the enjoyments they wished to
preserve; they who were in the other prisons felt but one, that of
preserving their lives. In the Conciergerie, where a man was condemned
in expectation or in reality, he had no longer any care; on the
contrary, every moment of life was an acquisition, the gain of a good
that was considered as lost. Such is nearly the situation of a soldier
in war, and such is really that of the savage throughout the whole
course of his life. If this be happiness, wretched indeed must be the
country where it is an object of envy. In pursuing my investigation, I
do not find that I am led to more advantageous ideas of the liberty of
the savage; on the contrary, I sees in him only the slave of his wants,
and of the freaks of a sterile and parsimonious nature. Food he has not
at hand; rest is not at his command; he must run, weary himself, endure
hunger and thirst, heat and cold, and all the inclemency of the elements
and seasons; and as the ignorance in which he was born and bred gives
him or leaves him a multitude of false and irrational ideas and
superstitious prejudices, he is likewise the slave of a number of errors
and passions, from which civilized man is exempted by the science and
knowledge of every kind that an improved state of society has
produced."--Volney's _Travels in the United States_, p. 467.

"Their impassible fortitude and endurance of suffering are, after all,
in my mind, the result of a greater degree of physical insensibility. It
has been told me, and I believe it, that in amputation and other
surgical operations, their nerves do not shrink, do not show the same
tendency to spasm with those of the whites. When the savage, to explain
his insensibility to cold, called upon the white man to recollect how
little his own face was affected by it, in consequence of its constant
exposure, he added, 'My body is all face.'[246] This increasing
insensibility, transmitted from generation to generation, finally
becomes inwrought with the whole web of animal nature, and the body of
the savage seems to have little more sensibility than the hoofs of
horses."--Flint's _Ten Years in the Valley of the Mississippi_. See,
also, Ulloa's _Notic. Amer._, p. 313.

Charlevoix quotes a passage from Cicero to the effect that "l'habitude
au travail donne de la facilité à supporter la douleur."--2 _Tusc._,

[Footnote 246: Delicacy of skin is observed to be in proportion to
civilization among nations, in proportion to degrees of refinement among
individuals.--Sharon Turner.]

[Footnote 247: Conical stones, wrapped up in 100 goat skins, were the
idols preserved in the temple of the Natchez. Many authors assert that
the Amazons and many Eastern people had nothing in their temples but
these pyramidal stones, which represented to them the Divinity....
"Peut-être aussi vouloient ils (les fondateurs des Pyramides) figurer en
même tems la Divinité, et ce qui leur restoit d'idées du mystère de la
Sainte Trinité, dans les trois faces de ces pyramides. Du moins est ce
ainsi qu'aux Indes un Brame paroissoit concevoir les choses et
s'expliquer d'après les anciennes. 'Il faut,' disoit il, 'se réprésenter
Dieu et ses trois noms différents qui répondent à ces trois principaux
attributs, à peu près sous l'idée de ces Pyramides triangulaires qu'on
voit élevées devant la poste de quelques temples."--_Lettre du Père
Bouchet à M. Huet, Evêque d'Avranches._ Three logs are always employed
to keep up the fire in the Natchez temple.--Lafitau, vol. i., p. 167.

Extract from a dialogue between John Wesley and the Chickasaw Indians:

"_Wesley._ Do you believe there is One above who is over all things?

"_Answer._ We believe there are four beloved things above--the clouds,
the sun, the clear sky, and He that lives in the clear sky.

"_Wesley._ Do you believe there is but One who lives in the clear sky?

"_Answer._ We believe there are two with Him, three in all."--Wesley's
_Journal_, No. 1., p. 39.]

[Footnote 248: See Stephens's "Incidents of Travel in Central America,"
vol. ii., p. 346.

"Les croix qui ont tant excité la curiosité des conquistadores à
Coqumel, à Yucatan, et dans d'autres contrées de l'Amérique ne sont pas
'des contes de moines,' et méritent, comme tout ce qui a rapport au
culte des peuples indigènes du Nouveau Continent, un examen plus
sérieux. Je me sers du mot culte, car un relief conservé dans les ruines
de Palenque, de Guatemala, et dont je possède une copie, ne me paraît
laisser ancun doute qu'une figure symbolique en forme de croix étoit un
objet d'adoration. Il faut faire observer cependant qu'à cette croix
manque le prolongement supérieur, et qu'elle forme plutôt la lettre
_tau_. Des idées qui n'ont ancun rapport avec le Christianisme ont pu
être symboliquement attachées à cet emblême Egyptien d'Hermès, si
célébre parmi les Chrétiens depuis la destruction du temple de Sérapis à
Alexandrie sous Théodose le Grand. (Rufinus, _Hist. Eccles._, lib. ii.,
cap. xxix., p. 294; Zozomenes, _Eccl. Hist._, lib. iii., cap. xv.) Un
bâton terminé par une croix se voit dans la main d'Astarté sur les
monnaies de Sidon au 3me siècle avant notre ère. En Scandinavie, un
signe de l'alphabet _runique_ figurait le _marteau de Thor_, très
semblable à la croix du relief de Palenque. On marquoit de cette _rune_,
dans les tems payens, les objets qu'on vouloit sanctifier." (Voyez
l'excellent Traité de M. Guillaume Grimm. _Ueber Deutsche Runen_, p.
242.)--Humboldt, _Géographie de Nouveau Continent_, vol. ii., p. 356.

"Laët avoue qu' Herrera parle d'une espèce de baptême, et de confession
usitée dans Yucatan et dans les isles voisines, mais il ajoute qu'il est
bien plus naturel d'attribuer toutes ces marques équivoques de
Christianisme qu'on a cru apercevoir en plusieurs provinces du Nouveau
Monde au démon qui a toujours affecté de contrefaire le culte du vrai
Dieu." Charlevoix adds, "Cette remarque est de tous les bons auteurs qui
out parle de la religion des peuples nouvellement découverts, et fondée
sur l'autorité des pères de l'Eglise."--Charlevoix, tom. v., p. 28.]

[Footnote 249: See Appendix, No. LI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 250: "The most sensual, degraded, and least intellectual
tribes of Northern Asia and America have purer notions of a Spiritual
Deity than were possessed of old by the worshipers of Jupiter and Juno
under Pericles."--_Progression by Antagonism._ This, according to Lord
Lindsay's theory, is to be accounted for by the absence of imagination,
these nations being only governed by Sense and Spirit, to the exclusion
of intellect in either of its manifestations, Imagination, or
Reason.--P. 21, 26.]

[Footnote 251: "At the breaking up of the winter," says Hunter, "after
having supplied ourselves with such things as were necessary and the
situation afforded, all our party visited the spring from which we had
procured our supplies of water, and there offered up our orisons to the
Great Spirit for having preserved us in health and safety, and for
having supplied all our wants. This is the constant practice of the
Osages, Kansas, and many other nations of Indians on breaking up their
encampments, and is by no means an unimportant ceremony." The habitual
piety of the Indian mind is remarked by Heckewelder, and strongly
insisted upon by Hunter, and it is satisfactorily proved by the whole
tenor of his descriptions, where he throws himself back, as it were,
into the feelings peculiar to Indian life. And, indeed, after hearing at
a council the broken fragments of an Indian harangue, however
imperfectly rendered by an ignorant interpreter, or reading the few
specimens of Indian oratory which have been preserved by translation, no
one can fail to remark a perpetual and earnest reference to the power
and goodness of the Deity. "Brothers! we all belong to one family; we
are all children of the Great Spirit," was the commencement of
Tecumthé's harangue to the Osages; and he afterward tells them: "When
the white men first set foot on our grounds, they were hungry; they had
no places on which to spread their blankets or to kindle their fires.
They were feeble; they could do nothing for themselves. Our fathers
commiserated their distress, and shared freely with them whatever the
Great Spirit has given to his red children."--_Quarterly Review._]

[Footnote 252: On the remarkable occasion on which our forces were
compelled, in 1813, to evacuate the Michigan territory, Tecumthé, in the
name of his nation, refused to consent to retreat; he closed his denial
with these words: "Our lives are in the hand of the Great Spirit: He
gave the lands which we possess to our fathers; if it be his will, our
bones shall whiten upon them, but we will never quit them." An old
Oneida chief, who was blind from years, observed to Heckewelder, "I am
an aged hemlock; the winds of one hundred years have whistled through my
branches; I am dead at the top. Why I yet live, the great, good Spirit
only knows." This venerable father of the forest lived long enough to be
converted to Christianity.--_Quarterly Review._]

[Footnote 253: A Huron woman under the instruction of a missionary, who
detailed to her the perfections of God, exclaimed, in a species of
ecstasy, "I understand, I understand; and I always felt convinced that
our Areskoui was exactly such a one as the God you have described to
me."--Lafitau, tom. i., p. 127. The Great Spirit was named Areskoui
among the Huron, Agriskoné among the Iroquois, Manitou among the

[Footnote 254: See Appendix, No. LII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 255: Every spring the Arkansas go in a body to some retired
place, and there turn up a large space of land, which they do with the
drums beating all the while. After this they call it the _Desart_, or
the Field of the Spirit, and thither they go when they are in their
enthusiastic fits, and there wait for inspiration from their pretended
deity. In the mean while, as they do this every year, it proves of no
small advantage to them, for by this means they turn up all their land
by degrees, and it becomes abundantly more fruitful.--Tonti.]

[Footnote 256: Lafitau asserts that the first beast killed by a young
hunter was always offered in sacrifice.--Vol. i., p. 515. See Catlin's
description of the sacrifices and ceremonies practiced when the first
fruits of corn are ripe.--Catlin, vol. i., p. 189.]

[Footnote 257: Peter Martyr speaks of the general opinion among the
early discoverers that the Indians believed in a species of immortality.
"They confess the soul to be immortal; having put off the bodily
clothing, they imagine it goeth forth to the woods and the mountains,
and that it liveth there perpetually in caves; nor do they exempt it
from eating or drinking, but that it should be fed there. The answering
voices heard from caves and hollows, which the Latines call echoes, they
suppose to be the souls of the departed wandering through those
places."--Peter Martyr, Decad. VIII., cap. ix., M. Lock's translation,

[Footnote 258: "Une jeune sauvagesse voyant sa soeur mourante, par la
quantité de ciguë qui elle avoit pris dans un dépit, et déterminé à ne
faire aucun remède pour se garantir de la mort, pleuroit à chaudes
larmes, et s'efforçoit de la toucher par les liens du sang, et de
l'amitié qui les unissoit ensemble. Elle lui disoit sans cesse, 'C'en
est donc fait; in veux que nous ne nous retrouvions jamais plus, et que
nous ne nous revoyions jamais?' Le missionnaire, frappé de ces paroles,
lui en demanda la raison. 'Il me semble,' dit-il, 'que vous avez un pays
des âmes, où vous devez tous vous reünir à vos ancêtres; pourquoi donc
est ce que tu parles ainsi à la soeur?' 'Il est vrai,' reprit-elle, 'que
nous allons tous au pays des âmes; mais les mechants, et ceux en
particulier, qui se sont dêtruits eux-mêmes par un mort violente, y
portent la peine de leur crime; ils y sont séparés des autres, et n'ont
point de communication avec eux: c'est là le sujet de mes
peines.'"--Lafitau, tom. i., p. 404. See Appendix, LII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 259: Hunter gives the following view of the Indian mythology,
while describing his own and his companions' first sight of the Pacific
Ocean: "Here the surprise and astonishment of our whole party was
indescribably great. The unbounded view of waters, the incessant and
tremendous dashing of the waves along the shore, accompanied with a
noise resembling the roar of loud and distant thunder, filled our minds
with the most sublime and awful sensation, and fixed on them as
immutable truths the tradition we had received from our old men, that
the great waters divide the residence of the Great Spirit from the
temporary abodes of his red children. We have contemplated in silent
dread the immense difficulties over which we should be obliged to
triumph after death before we could arrive at those delightful
hunting-grounds, which are unalterably destined for such only as do
good, and love the Great Spirit. We looked in vain for the stranded and
shattered canoes of those who had done wickedly; we could see none, and
were led to hope they were few in number. We offered up our devotions,
or, I might say, our minds were serious, and our devotions continued all
the time we were in this country, for we had ever been taught to believe
that the Great Spirit resided on the western side of the Rocky
Mountains; and this idea continued throughout the journey,
notwithstanding the more specific boundary assigned to Him by our
traditionary dogmas."--_Memoirs of a Captivity among the North American
Indians from Childhood to the Age of Nineteen_. By John D. Hunter, p.
69. 1824.--See Appendix, No. LIII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 260: See Appendix, No. LIV. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 261: See Appendix, No. LV. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 262: See Appendix, No. LVI. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 263: "While I remained among the Indians, a couple, whose tent
was adjacent to mine, lost a son of four years of age. The parents were
so much affected at the death of their child, that they observed the
usual testimonies of grief with such extreme rigor as through the weight
of sorrow and loss of blood to occasion the loss of the father. The
woman, who had hitherto been inconsolable, no sooner saw her husband
expire than she dried up her tears, and appeared cheerful and resigned.
I took an opportunity of asking her the reason of so extraordinary a
transition, when she informed me that her child was so young it would
have been unable to support itself in the world of spirits, and both she
and her husband were apprehensive that its situation would be far from
happy. No sooner, however, did she behold her husband depart for the
same place, who not only loved the child with the tenderest affection,
but was a good hunter, and would be able to provide plentifully for its
support, than she ceased to mourn. She said she had now no reason to
continue her tears, as the child on whom she doted was under the care
and protection of a fond father, and she had now only one wish remaining
ungratified, that of herself being with them."--Carver.]

[Footnote 264: Captain Franklin says of the Chippewyans, "No article is
spared by these unhappy men when a near relative dies; their clothes and
tents are cut to pieces, their guns broken, and every other weapon
rendered useless if some person do not remove these articles from their

"When the French missionaries asked the Indians why they deprived
themselves of their most necessary articles in favor of the dead, they
answered, 'that it was not only to evidence their love for their
departed relatives, but that they might avoid the sight of objects
which, having been used by them, would continually renew their grief.'
The same delicacy of feeling, so inconsistent with the coarseness of the
Red Man's nature, was manifested in their custom of never uttering the
names of the dead; and if these names were borne by any of the other
members of the family, they laid them aside during the whole of their
mourning. And it was esteemed the greatest insult that could be offered
to say to any one, 'Your father is dead, your mother is
dead.'"--Charlevoix, tom. vi., p. 109.]

[Footnote 265: Père Brebeuf, _Relation de la Nouvelle France_;
Charlevoix; Lafitau. Catlin describes the same ceremonies.

It has been often said that the care taken by the Indians for the
deceased corpses of their ancestors was in consequence of a universally
received tradition that these corpses were to rise again to immortal


In the warmer and milder climates of America, none of the rude tribes
were clothed; for them there was little need of defense against the
weather, and their extreme indolence indisposed them to any exertion not
absolutely necessary for their subsistence. Others were satisfied with a
very slight covering, but all delighted in ornaments. They dressed their
hair in different forms, stained their skins, and fastened bits of gold,
or shells, or bright pebbles in their noses and cheeks. They also
frequently endeavored to alter their natural form and feature; as soon
as an infant was born, it was subjected to some cruel process of
compression, by which the bones of the skull while still soft, were
squeezed into the shape of a cone, or flattened, or otherwise
distorted.[266] But in all efforts to adorn or alter their persons, the
great object was to inspire terror and respect. The warrior was
indifferent to the admiration of woman, whom he enslaved and despised,
and it was only for war or the council that he assumed his choicest
ornaments, and painted himself with unusual care. The decorations of the
women were few and simple; all those that were precious and splendid
were reserved for their haughty lords. In several tribes, the wives had
to devote much of their time to adorning their husbands, and could
bestow little attention upon themselves. The different nations remaining
unclothed show considerable sagacity in anointing themselves in such a
manner as to provide against the heat and moisture of the climate. Soot,
the juices of herbs having a green, yellow, or vermilion tint, mixed
with oil and grease, are lavishly employed upon their skin to adorn it
and render it impervious. By this practice profuse perspiration is
checked, and a defense is afforded against the innumerable and
tormenting insects that abound every where in America.[268] Black and
red are the favorite colors for painting the face. In war, black is
profusely laid on, the other colors being only used to heighten its
effect, and give a terrible expression to the countenance.[269] The
breast, arms, and legs of the Indian are tattooed with sharp needles or
pointed bones, the colors being carefully rubbed in. His Manitou, and
the animal chosen as the symbol of his tribe, are first painted, then
all his most remarkable exploits, and the enemies he has slain or
scalped, so that his body displays a pictorial history of his life.[270]

In the severe climate of the north the Indian's dress is somewhat more
ample. Instead of shoes he wears a strip of soft leather wrapped round
the foot, called the moccasin. Upward to the middle of the thigh, a
piece of leather or cloth, fitting closely, serves instead of pantaloons
and stockings: it is usually sewed on to the limb, and is never removed.
Two aprons, each about a foot square, are fastened to a girdle round the
waist, and hang before and behind. This is their permanent dress. On
occasions of ceremony, however, and in cold weather, they also wear a
short shirt, and over all a loose robe, closed or held together in
front. Now, an English blanket is generally used for this garment; but,
before the produce of European art was known among them, the skins of
wild animals furnished all their covering. The chiefs usually wear a
sort of breast-plate, covered with shells, pebbles, and pieces of
glittering metal. Those who communicate with Europeans display beads,
rings, bracelets, and other gauds instead. The ear, too, is cumbrously
ornamented with showy pendents, and the tuft of hair on the crown of the
head is interwoven with feathers, the wings of birds, shells, and many
fantastic ornaments. Sometimes the Indian warrior wears buffalo
horns,[271] reduced in size and polished, on his head: this, however, is
a distinction only for those renowned in war or in the council. The
dress of the women varies but little from that of the men, except in
being more simple. They wear their hair long and flowing, and richly
ornamented, whenever they can procure the means.

The dwellings of the Indians usually receive much less attention than
their personal appearance. Even among tribes comparatively far advanced
in civilization, the structure of their houses or cabans was very rude
and simple. They were generally wretched huts, of an oblong or circular
form, and sometimes so low that it was always necessary to preserve a
sitting or lying posture while under their shelter. There were no
windows; a large hole in the center of the roof allowed the smoke to
escape; and a sort of curtain of birch bark occupied the place of the
door. These dwellings are sometimes 100 feet long, when they accommodate
several families. Four cabans generally form a quadrangle, each open to
the inside, with the fire in the center common to all. The numerous and
powerful tribes formerly inhabiting Canada and its borders usually dwelt
in huts of a very rude description. In their expeditions, both for war
and the chase, the Indians erect temporary cabans in a remarkably short
space of time. A few poles, raised in the shape of a cone, and covered
with birch bark, form the roof, and the tops of pine branches make a
fragrant bed. In winter the snow is cleared out of the place where the
caban is to be raised, and shaped into walls, which form a shelter from
the wind. The permanent dwellings were usually grouped in villages,
surrounded with double and even triple rows of palisades, interlaced
with branches of trees, so as to form a compact barrier, and offering a
considerable difficulty to an assailing foe.

The furniture in these huts was very scanty. The use of metal being
unknown, the pots or vessels for boiling their food were made of coarse
earthen-ware, or of soft stone hollowed out with a hatchet. In some
cases they were made of wood, and the water was boiled by throwing in a
number of heated stones.

The Indian displays some skill in the construction of canoes, and they
are admirably adapted for his purpose. They are usually made of the bark
of a single tree, strengthened by ribs of strong wood. These light and
buoyant skiffs float safely on stormy or rapid waters under the
practiced guidance of the Indian, and can with ease be borne on his
shoulder from one river or lake to another. Canoes formed out of the
trunk of a large tree are also sometimes used, especially in winter, for
the purpose of crossing rivers when there is floating ice, their great
strength rendering them capable of enduring the collision with the
floating masses, to which they are liable.

Even among the rudest Indian tribes a regular union between man and wife
was universal, although not attended with ceremonials. The marriage
contract is a matter of purchase. The man buys his wife of her parents;
not with money, for its value is unknown, but with some useful and
precious article, such as a robe of bear or other handsome skin, a
horse, a rifle, powder and shot. When the Indian has made the bargain
with his wife's parents, he takes her home to his caban, and from that
time she becomes his slave. There are several singular modes of
courtship among some of the tribes, but generally much reserve and
consideration are exhibited.[272] In many respects, however, the morals
and manners of the Indians are such as might be expected in communities
where the precepts of Christianity are unknown, and where even the
artificial light of civilization is wanting. There are occasionally
instances of a divorce being resorted to from mere caprice; but,
usually, the marriage tie is regarded as a perpetual covenant. As the
wife toils incessantly, and procures a great part of the subsistence,
she is considered too valuable a servant to be lightly lost. Among the
chiefs of the tribes to the west and south, polygamy is general, and the
number of these wife-servants constitute the principal wealth; but among
the northern nations this plurality is very rarely possessed. The Indian
is seldom seen to bestow the slightest mark of tenderness upon his wife
or children: he, however, exerts himself to the utmost for their
welfare, and will sacrifice his life to avenge their wrongs. His
indomitable pride prompts him to assume an apparent apathy, and to
control every emotion of affection, suffering, or sorrow.

Parents perform few duties toward their children beyond procuring their
daily bread. The father is by turns occupied in war and the chase, or
sunk in total indolence, while the mother is oppressed by the toils of
her laborious bondage, and has but little time to devote to her maternal
cares. The infant is fastened to a board, cushioned with soft moss, by
thongs of leather, and is generally hung on the branch of a tree, or, in
traveling, carried on the mother's back.[273] When able to move, it is
freed from this confinement, and allowed to make its way about as it
pleases. It soon reaches some neighboring lake or river, and sports
itself in the water all day long. As the child advances in years it
enjoys perfect independence; it is rarely or never reproved or
chastised. The youths are early led to emulate the deeds of their
fathers; they practice with the bow, and other weapons suited to a
warrior's use; and, as manhood approaches, they gradually assume the
dignified gravity of the elders. In some tribes the young men must pass
through a dreadful ordeal when they arrive at the age of manhood, which
is supposed to prepare them for the endurance of all future sufferings,
and enables the chiefs to judge of their courage, and to select the
bravest among them to lead in difficult enterprises.

During four days previous to this terrible torture the candidates
observe a strict fast, and are denied all sleep. When the appointed day
arrives, certain strange ceremonies of an allegorical description are
performed, in which all the inhabitants of the village take part. The
candidates then repair to a large caban, where the chiefs and elders of
the tribe are assembled to witness the ordeal. The torture commences by
driving splints of wood through the flesh of the back and breasts of the
victim: he is next hoisted off the ground by ropes attached to these
splints, and suspended by the quivering flesh, while the tormentors
twist the hanging body slowly round, thus exquisitely enhancing the
agony, till a death-faint comes to the relief of the candidate: he is
then lowered to the ground and left to the care of the Great Spirit.
When he recovers animation, he rises and proceeds on his hands and feet
to another part of the caban: he there lays the little finger of the
left hand upon a buffalo skull, as a sacrifice to the Great Spirit, and
another Indian chops it off. The fore-finger is also frequently offered
up in the same manner: this mutilation does not interfere with the use
of the bow, the only weapon for which the left hand is required. Other
cruel tortures are inflicted for some time, and at length the wretched
victim, reeling and staggering from the intensity of his suffering,
reaches his own dwelling, where he is placed under the care of his
friends. Some of the famous warriors of the tribe pass through this
horrible ordeal repeatedly, and the oftener it is endured, the greater
is their estimation among their people. No bandages are applied to the
wounds thus inflicted, nor is any attention paid to their cure; but,
from the extreme exhaustion and debility caused by want of sustenance
and sleep, circulation is checked, and sensibility diminished; the
bleeding and inflammation are very slight, and the results are seldom

The native tribes are engaged in almost perpetual hostility against each
other. War is the great occupation of savage life, the measure of merit,
the high road of ambition, and the source of its intensest
joy--revenge.[274] In war the Indian character presents the darkest
aspect; the finer and gentler qualities are vailed or dormant, and a
fiendish ferocity assumes full sway. It is waged to exterminate, not to
reduce. The enemy is assailed with treachery, and, if conquered, treated
with revolting cruelty. The glory and excitement of war are dear to the
Indian, but when the first drop of blood is shed, revenge is dearer
still. He thirsts to offer up the life of an enemy to appease the
departed spirit of a slaughtered friend. Thus each contest generates
another even more embittered than itself. The extension or defense of
the hunting-grounds is often a primary cause of hostility among the
native nations, and the increase of the power of their tribe by
incorporating with them such of the vanquished as they may spare from a
cruel death is another frequent motive. The savage pines and chafes in
long-continued peace, and the prudence of the aged can with difficulty
restrain the fierce impetuosity of the young. Individual quarrels and a
thirst for fame often lead a single savage to invade a hostile territory
against the counsels of his tribe; but, when war is determined by the
general voice, more enlarged views, and a desire of aggrandizement guide
the proceedings.

As soon as the determination of declaring war is formed, he who is
chosen by the nation as the chief enters on a course of solemn
preparation, entreating the aid and guidance of the Great Spirit. As a
signal of the approaching strife, he marches three times round his
winter dwelling, bearing a large blood-red flag, variegated with deep
tints of black. When this terrible emblem is seen, the young warriors
crowd around to hearken to the words of their chief. He then addresses
them in a strain of impassioned, but rude and ferocious eloquence,
calling upon them to follow him to glory and revenge. When he concludes
his oration, he throws a wampum belt on the ground, which is
respectfully lifted up by some warrior of high renown, who is judged
worthy of being second in command. The chief now paints himself black,
and commences a strict fast, only tasting a decoction of consecrated
herbs to assist his dreams, which are strictly noted and interpreted by
the elders. He then washes off the black paint. A huge fire is lighted
in a public place in the village, and the great war-caldron set to boil:
each warrior throws something into this vessel, and the allies who are
to join the expedition also send offerings for the same purpose. Lastly,
the sacred dog is sacrificed to the God of War, and boiled in the
caldron to form the chief dish at a festival, to which only the warriors
and men great in council are admitted.

During these ceremonies the elders watch the omens with deep anxiety,
and if the promise be favorable, they prepare for immediate departure.
The chief then paints himself in bright and varied colors, to render his
appearance terrible, and sings his war song, announcing the nature of
the projected enterprise. His example is followed by all the warriors,
who join a war-dance, while they proclaim with a loud voice the glory of
their former deeds, and their determination to destroy their enemies.
Each Indian now seizes his arms: the bow and quiver hang over the left
shoulder, the tomahawk from the left hand, and the scalping-knife[275]
is stuck in the girdle. A distinguished chief is appointed to take
charge of the Manitous or guardian powers of each warrior; they are
collected, carefully placed in a box, and accompany the expedition as
the ark of safety. Meanwhile the women incite the warriors to vengeance,
and eagerly demand captives for the torture, to appease the spirits of
their slaughtered relatives, or sometimes, indeed, to supply their
place. When the war party are prepared to start, the chief addresses his
followers in a short harangue; they then commence the march, singing,
and shouting the terrible war-whoop. The women proceed with the
expedition for some distance; and when they must return, exchange
endearing names with their husbands and relations, and express ardent
wishes for victory. Some little gift of affection is usually exchanged
at parting.

Before striking the first blow the Indians make open declaration of war.
A herald, painted black, is sent, bearing a red tomahawk, on one side of
which are inscribed figures representing the causes of hostilities. He
reaches the enemy's principal village at midnight, throws down the
tomahawk in some conspicuous place, and disappears silently. When once
warning is thus given, every stratagem that cunning can suggest is
employed for the enemy's destruction.

As long as the expedition continues in friendly countries, the warriors
wander about in small parties for the convenience of hunting, still,
however, keeping up communication by means of sounds imitating the cries
of birds and beasts. None ever fail to appear at the appointed place of
meeting upon the frontier, where they again hold high festival, and
consult the omens of their dreams. When they enter the hostile territory
a close array is observed, and a deep silence reigns. They creep on all
fours, walk through water, or upon the stumps of trees, to avoid leaving
any trace of their route. To conceal their numbers they sometimes march
in a long single file, each stepping on the foot-print of the man before
him. They sometimes even wear the hoofs of the buffalo or the paws of
the bear, and run for miles in a winding course to imitate the track of
those animals. Every effort is made to surprise the foe, and they
frequently lure him to destruction by imitating from the depths of the
forest the cries of animals of the chase.

If the expedition meet with no straggling party of the enemy, it
advances with cautious stealth toward some principal village; the
warriors creep on their hands and feet through the deep woods, and often
even paint themselves the color of dried leaves to avoid being perceived
by their intended victims. On approaching the doomed hamlet, they
examine it carefully, but rapidly, from some tree-top or elevated
ground, and again conceal themselves till nightfall in the thickest
covert. Strange to say, these subtle warriors neglect altogether the
security of sentinels, and are satisfied with searching the surrounding
neighborhood for hidden foes; if none be discovered, they sleep in
confidence, even when hostile forces are not far off. They weakly trust
to the protecting power of their Manitous. When they have succeeded in
reaching the village, and concealing themselves unobserved, they wait
silently, keeping close watch till the hour before dawn, when the
inhabitants are in the deepest sleep. Then crawling noiselessly, like
snakes, through the grass and underwood, till they are upon the foe, the
chief raises a shrill cry, and the massacre begins. Discharging a shower
of arrows, they finish the deadly work with the club and tomahawk. The
great object, however, of the conquerors is to take the enemy alive, and
reserve him to grace their triumph and rejoice their eyes by his
torture. When resistance is attempted, this is often impossible, and an
instant death saves the victim from the far greater horrors of captivity
and protracted torment. When an enemy is struck down, the victor places
his foot upon the neck of the dead or dying man, and with a horrible
celerity and skill tears off the bleeding scalp.[276] This trophy is
ever preserved with jealous care by the Indian warriors.

After any great success the war party always return to their villages,
more eager to celebrate the victory than to improve its advantages.
Their women and old men await their return in longing expectation. The
fate of the war is announced from afar off by well-known signs; the bad
tidings are first told. A herald advances to the front of the returning
party, and sounds a death-whoop for each of their warriors who has
fallen in the fray. Then, after a little time, the tale of victory is
told, and the number of prisoners and of the slain declared. All
lamentations are soon hushed, and congratulations and rejoicing succeed.
During the retreat, if the war party be not hard pressed by the enemy,
prisoners are treated with some degree of humanity, but are very closely
guarded. When the expedition has returned to the village, the old men,
women, and children form themselves into two lines; the prisoners are
compelled to pass between them, and are cruelly bruised with sticks and
stones, but not vitally injured by their tormentors.

A council is usually held to decide the fate of the prisoners: the
alternatives are, to be adopted into the conquering nation, and received
as brothers, or to be put to death in the most horrible torments, thus
either to supply the place of warriors fallen in battle, or to appease
the spirits of the departed by their miserable end. The older warriors
among the captives usually meet the hardest fate; the younger are most
frequently adopted by the women, their wounds are cured, and they are
thenceforth received in every respect as if they belonged to the tribe.
The adopted prisoners go out to war against their former countrymen,
and the new tie is held even more binding than the old.

The veteran warrior, whose tattooed skin bears record of slaughtered
enemies, meets with no mercy: his face is painted, his head crowned with
flowers as if for a festival, black moccasins are put upon his feet, and
a flaming torch is placed above him as the signal of condemnation. The
women take the lead in the diabolical tortures to which he is subjected,
and rage around their victim with horrible cries. He is, however,
allowed a brief interval to sing his death-song, and he often continues
it even through the whole of the terrible ordeal. He boasts of his great
deeds, insults his tormentors, laughing at their feeble efforts, exults
in the vengeance that his nation will take for his death, and pours
forth insulting reproaches and threats. The song is then taken up by the
woman to whose particular revenge he has been devoted. She calls upon
the spirit of her husband or son to come and witness the sufferings of
his foe. After tortures too various and horrible to be particularized,
some kind wound closes the scene in death, and the victim's scalp is
lodged among the trophies of the tribe. To endure with unshaken
fortitude[277] is the greatest triumph of an Indian warrior, and the
highest confusion to his enemies, but often the proud spirit breaks
under the pangs that rack the quivering flesh, and shouts of intolerable
agony reward the demoniac ingenuity of the tormentors.

Many early writers considered that the charge of cannibalism[278]
against the Indians was well founded: doubtless, in moments of fury,
portions of an enemy's flesh have been rent off and eaten. To devour a
foeman's heart is held by them to be an exquisite vengeance. They have
been known to drink draughts of human blood, and, in circumstances of
scarcity, they do not hesitate to eat their captives. It is certain that
all the terms used by them in describing the torture of prisoners relate
to this horrible practice; yet, as they are so figurative in every
expression, these may simply mean the fullest gratification of revenge.
The evidence upon this point is obscure and contradictory; the Indian
can not be altogether acquitted or found guilty of this foul imputation.

The brief peace that affords respite amid the continual wars of the
Indian tribes is scarcely more than a truce. Nevertheless, it is
concluded with considerable form and ceremony. The first advance toward
a cessation of hostilities is usually made through the chief of a
neutral power. The nation proposing the first overture dispatches some
men of note as embassadors, accompanied by an orator, to contract the
negotiation. They bear with them the calumet[279] of peace as the
symbol of their purpose, and a certain number of wampum belts[280] to
note the objects and conditions of the negotiation. The orator explains
the meaning of the belts to the hostile chiefs, and if the proposition
be received, the opposite party accept the proffered symbols, and the
next day present others of a similar import. The calumet is then
solemnly smoked, and the burial of a war hatchet for each party and for
each ally concludes the treaty. The negotiations consist more in
presents, speeches, and ceremonies, than in any demands upon each other;
there is no property to provide tribute, and the victors rarely or never
require the formal cession of any of the hunting-grounds of the
vanquished. The unrestrained passions of individuals, and the satiety of
long continued peace, intolerable to the Indian, soon again lead to the
renewal of hostility.

The successful hunter ranks next to the brave warrior in the estimation
of the savage. Before starting on his grand expeditions, he prepares
himself by a course of fasting, dreaming, and religious observances, as
if for war. He hunts with astonishing dexterity and skill, and regards
this pursuit rather as an object of adventure and glory than as an
industrious occupation.

With regard to cultivation and the useful arts, the Indians are in the
very infancy of progress.[283] Their villages are usually not less than
eighteen miles apart, and are surrounded by a narrow circle of
imperfectly-cleared land, slightly turned up with a hoe, or scraped with
pointed sticks,[284] scarcely interrupting the continuous expanse of
the forest. They are only acquainted with the rudest sorts of clay
manufactures, and the use of the metals (except by European
introduction) is altogether unknown.[285] Their women, however, display
considerable skill in weaving fine mats, in staining the hair of
animals, and working it into brilliant colored embroideries. The wampum
belts are made with great care and some taste. The calumet is also
elaborately carved and ornamented; and the painting and tattooing of
their bodies sometimes presents well-executed and highly descriptive
pictures and hieroglyphics. They construct light and elegant baskets
from the swamp cane, and are very skillful in making bows and arrows;
some tribes, indeed, were so rude as not to have attained even to the
use of this primitive weapon, and the sling was by no means generally

Most of the American nations are without any fixed form of government
whatever. The complete independence of every man is fully recognized. He
may do what he pleases of good or evil, useful or destructive, no
constituted power interferes to thwart his will. If he even take away
the life of another, the by-standers do not interpose. The kindred of
the slain, however, will make any sacrifice for vengeance. And yet, in
the communities of these children of nature there usually reigns a
wonderful tranquillity. A deadly hostility exists between the different
tribes, but among the members comprising each the strictest union
exists. The honor and prosperity of his nation is the leading object of
the Indian. This national feeling forms a link to draw him closely to
his neighbor, and he rarely or never uses violence or evil speech
against a countryman. Where there is scarcely such a thing as individual
property, government and justice are necessarily very much simplified.
There exists almost a community of goods. No man wants while another has
enough and to spare. Their generosity knows no bounds. Whole tribes,
when ruined by disasters in war, find unlimited hospitality among their
neighbors; habitations and hunting-grounds are allotted to them, and
they are received in every respect as if they were members of the nation
that protects them.

As there is generally no wealth or hereditary distinction among this
people, the sole claim to eminence is founded on such personal qualities
as can only be conspicuous in war, council, or the chase. During times
of tranquillity and inaction all superiority ceases. Every man is
clothed and fares alike. Relations of patronage and dependence are
unknown. All are free and equal, and they perish rather than submit to
control or endure correction. During war, indeed, or in the chase, they
render a sort of obedience to those who excel in character and conduct,
but at other times no form of government whatever exists. The names of
magistrate and subject are not in their language. If the elders
interpose between man and man, it is to advise, not to decide. Authority
is only tolerated in foreign, not in domestic affairs.

Music and dancing express the emotions of the Indian's mind. He has his
songs of war and death, and particular moments of his life are appointed
for their recital. His great deeds and the vengeance he has inflicted
upon his enemies are his subjects; the language and music express his
passions rudely but forcibly. The dance[286] is still more important:
it is the grand celebration at every festival, and alternately the
exponent of their triumph, anger, or devotion. It is usually pantomimic,
and highly descriptive of the subject to which it is appropriate.

The Indians are immoderately fond of play as a means of excitement and
agitation. While gaming, they, who are usually so taciturn and
indifferent, become loquacious and eager. Their guns, arms, and all that
they possess are freely staked, and at times where all else is lost,
they will trust even their personal safety to the hazard of the
die.[287] The most barbarous of the tribes have unhappily succeeded in
inventing some species of intoxicating liquor: that from the root of the
maize was in general use; it is not disagreeable to the taste, and is
very powerful. When the accursed fire-water is placed before the
Indians, none can resist the temptation. The wisest, best, and bravest
succumb alike to this odious temptation: and when their unrestrained
passions are excited by drinking, they are at times guilty of enormous
outrages, and the scenes of their festivities often become stained with
kindred blood. The women are not permitted to partake of this fatal
pleasure; their duty is to serve the guests, and take care of their
husbands and friends when overpowered by the debauch. This exclusion
from a favorite enjoyment is evidence of the contempt in which females
are held among the Indians.

In the present day, he who would study the character and habits of these
children of Nature must travel far away beyond the Rocky Mountains,
where the murrain of perverted civilization has not yet spread. There he
may still find the virtues and vices of the savage, and lead among those
wild tribes that fascinating life of liberty which few have ever been
known to abandon willingly for the restraints and luxuries of
civilization and refinement.


[Footnote 266: "The custom of squeezing and flattening the head is still
strictly adhered to among the Chinooks. The people bearing the name of
Flat Heads are very numerous, but very few among them actually practice
the custom. Among the Chinooks it is almost universal. The process is
thus effected: The child is placed on a thick plank, to which it is
lashed with thongs to a position from which it can not escape, and the
back of the head supported by a sort of pillow made of moss or
rabbit-skins, with an inclined piece resting on the forehead of the
child. This is every day drawn down a little tighter by means of a cord,
which holds it in its place, until at length it touches the nose, thus
forming a straight line from the crown of the head to the end of the
nose. This process is seemingly a cruel one, though I doubt whether it
causes much pain, as it is done in earliest infancy, while the bones are
soft and cartilaginous, and easily pressed into this distorted shape by
forcing the occipital up and the frontal down, so that the skull at the
top in profile will show a breadth of not more than an inch and a half
or two inches, when in a front view it exhibits a great expansion on the
sides, making it at the top nearly the width of one and a half natural
heads. By this remarkable operation the brain is singularly changed from
its natural state, but in all probability not in the least diminished or
injured in its natural functions. This belief is drawn from the
testimony of many credible witnesses who have closely scrutinized them,
and ascertained that those who have the head flattened are in no way
inferior in intellectual powers to those whose heads are in their
natural shapes. This strange custom existed precisely the same until
recently among the Choctaws and Chickasaws, who occupied a large part of
the states of Mississippi and Alabama, where they have laid their bones,
and hundreds of their skulls have been procured, bearing marks of a
similar treatment, with similar results."--Catlin's _American Indians_,
vol. ii., p. 112.

With respect to the origin of this singular custom, Humboldt is inclined
to think that it may be traced from the natural inclination of each race
to look upon their own personal peculiarities as the standard of beauty.
He observes that the pointed form of the heads is very striking in the
Mexican drawings, and continues thus: "If we examine osteologically the
skulls of the natives of America, we see that there is no race on the
globe in which the frontal bone is more flattened or which have less
forehead.[267] (Blumenbach, _Decas Quinta Craniorum_, tab. xlvi., p. 14,
1808.) This extraordinary flattening exists among people of the
copper-colored race, who have never been acquainted with the custom of
producing artificial deformities, as is proved by the skulls of Mexican,
Peruvian, and Aztec Indians, which M. Bonpland and myself brought to
Europe, and several of which are deposited in the Museum of Natural
History at Paris. The negroes prefer the thickest and most prominent
lips, the Calmucks perceive the line of beauty in turned-up noses. M.
Cuvier observes (_Leçons d'Anatomie Comparée_, tom. ii., p. 6) that the
Grecian artists, in the statues of heroes, raised the facial line from
85° to 100°, or beyond the natural form. I am led to think that the
barbarous custom, among certain savage tribes in America, of squeezing
the heads of children between two planks, arises from the idea that
beauty consists in this extraordinary compression of the bone by which
Nature has characterized the American race. It is no doubt from
following this standard of beauty that even the Aztec people, who never
disfigured the heads of their children, have represented their heroes
and principal divinities with heads much flatter than any of the Caribs
I saw on the Lower Orinoco."--Humboldt's _Researches on the Ancient
Inhabitants of America_.]

[Footnote 267: "L'anatomie comparée en offre une autre confirmation dans
la proportion constante du volume des lobes cérébrales avec le degré
d'intelligence des animaux."--Cuvier's _Report to the Institute on
Flouren's Experiments in 1822_.]

[Footnote 268: "Ces huiles leur sont absolument nécessaires, et ils sont
mangés de vermine quand elles leur manquent."--Lafitau, tom. i., p. 59.

It is supposed by Volney that the fatal effects of the small-pox among
the Indians are to be attributed to the obstacle that a skin thus
hardened opposes to the eruption.--P. 416. In the most detailed account
given of the ravages of this disease, Catlin particularly mentions that
no eruption was visible in any of the bodies of the dead. Forster, the
English translator of Professor Kalm's _Travels in America_, held the
same opinion as Volney.

"When the Kalmucks in the Russian dominions get the small-pox, it has
been observed that very few escape. Of this, I believe, no other reason
can be alleged than that the small-pox is always dangerous, either when
the open pores of the skin are too numerous, which is caused by opening
them in a warm-water bath, or when they are too much closed, which is
the case with all the nations that are dirty and greasy. All the
American Indians rub their body with oils; the Kalmucks rub their bodies
and their fur coats with grease; the Hottentots are also, I believe,
patterns of filthiness: this shuts up all the pores, hinders
perspiration entirely, and makes the small-pox always fatal among these
nations."--_Note_ by the translator of Kalm, p. 532.

"The ravages which the small-pox made this year (1750) among their
Mohawk friends was a source of deep concern to these revered
philanthropists. These people having been accustomed from early
childhood to anoint themselves with bear's grease, to repel the
innumerable tribes of noxious insects in summer, and to exclude the
extreme cold ill winter, their pores are so completely shut up that the
small-pox does not rise upon them, nor have they much chance of recovery
from any acute disorder."--_Memoirs of an American Lady_, vol. i., p.

[Footnote 269: M. de Tracy, when governor of Canada, was told by his
Indian allies that, with his good-humored face, he would never inspire
the enemy with any degree of awe. They besought him to place himself
under their brush, when they would soon make him such that his very
aspect would strike terror.--Creuxius, _Nova Francia_, p. 62;
Charlevoix, tom, vi., p. 40.]

[Footnote 270: St. Isidore of Seville, and Solinus, give a similar
description of the manner of painting the body in use among the Picts.
"The operator delineates the figures with little points made by the
prick of a needle, and into those he insinuates the juice of some native
plants, that their nobility, thus written, as it were, upon every limb
of their body, might distinguish them from ordinary men by the number of
the figures they were decorated with."--Isidor., _Origin_, lib. xix.,
cap. xxiii.; Solin., _De Magnâ Britanniâ_, cap. xxv.]

[Footnote 271: "These horns are made of about a third part of the horn
of a buffalo bull, the horn having been split from end to end, and a
third part of it taken, and shaved thin and light, and highly polished.
They are attached to the top or the head-dress on each side, in the same
place as they rise and stand on the head of a buffalo, rising out of a
mat of ermine skins and tails, which hangs over the top of the
head-dress somewhat in the form that the large and profuse locks of hair
hang and fall over the head of a buffalo bull. This custom is one which
belongs to all northeastern tribes, and is no doubt of very ancient
origin, having purely a classic meaning. No one wears the head-dress
surmounted with horns except the dignitaries who are very high in
authority, and whose exceeding valor, worth, and power is admitted by
all the nation. This head-dress is used only on certain occasions, and
they are very seldom: when foreign chiefs, Indian agents, or other
important personages visit a tribe, or at war parades. Sometimes, when a
chief sees fit to send a war party to battle, he decorates his head with
this symbol of power, to stimulate his men, and throws himself into the
foremost of the battle, inviting the enemy to concentrate his shafts
upon them. The horns upon these head-dresses are but loosely attached at
the bottom, so that they easily fall backward or forward; and by an
ingenious motion of the head, which is so slight as to be almost
imperceptible, they are made to balance to and fro, and sometimes one
backward and the other forward like a horse's ears, giving a vast deal
of expression and force of character to the appearance of the chief who
is wearing them. This is a remarkable instance, like hundreds of others,
of a striking similarity to Jewish customs, to the kerns (or _keren_, in
Hebrew), the horns worn by the Abyssinian chiefs and Hebrews as a symbol
of power and command--worn at great parades and celebrations of
victories."--Catlin, vol. i., p. 104.]

[Footnote 272: "When a young Indian becomes attached to a female, he
does not frequent the lodge of her parents, or visit her elsewhere,
oftener, perhaps, than he would provided no such attachment existed.
Were he to pursue an opposite course before he had acquired either the
reputation of a warrior or a hunter, and suffer his attachment to be
known or suspected by any personal attention, he would become the
derision of the warriors and the contempt of the squaws. On meeting,
however, she is the first, excepting the elderly people, who engages his
respectful and kind inquiries; after which, no conversation passes
between them, except it be with the language of the eyes, which, even
among savages, is eloquent, and appears to be well understood. The next
indication of serious intentions on the part of the young hunter is the
assumption of more industrious habits. He rises by daybreak, and, with
his gun or bow, visits the woods and prairies, in search of the most
rare and esteemed game. He endeavors to acquire the character of an
expert and industrious hunter, and, whenever success has crowned his
efforts, never fails to send the parents of the object of his affections
some of the choicest he has procured. His mother is generally the
bearer, and she is sure to tell from what source it comes, and to dilate
largely on the merits and excellences of her son. The girl, on her part,
exercises all her skill in preparing it for food, and when it is cooked,
frequently sends some of the most delicious pieces, accompanied by other
small presents, such as nuts, moccasins, &c., to her lover. These
negotiations are usually carried on by the mothers of the respective
parties, who consider them confidential, and seldom divulge even to the
remaining parents, except one or both of the candidates should be the
offspring of a chief, when a deviation from this practice is exacted,
and generally observed. After an Indian has acquired the reputation of a
warrior, expert hunter, or swift runner, he has little need of minor
qualifications, or of much address or formality in forming his
matrimonial views. The young squaws sometimes discover their attachment
to those they love by some act of tender regard, but more frequently
through the kind offices of some confidante or friend. Such overtures
generally succeed: but should they fail, it is by no means considered
disgraceful, or in the least disadvantageous to the female; on the
contrary, should the object of her affections have distinguished himself
especially in battle, she is the more esteemed on account of the
judgment she displayed in her partiality for a respectable and brave
warrior."--Hunter, p. 235-237.]

[Footnote 273: See Appendix, No. LVII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 274: "They firmly believe that the spirits of those who are
killed by the enemy without equal revenge of blood, find no rest, and at
night haunt the houses of the tribe to which they belonged; but when
that kindred duty of retaliation is justly executed, they immediately
get ease and power to fly away."--Adair's _Account of the American

[Footnote 275: "The modern scalping-knife is of civilized manufacture
made expressly for Indian use, and carried into the Indian country by
thousands and tens of thousands, and sold at an enormous price. In the
native simplicity of the Indian, he shapes out his rude hatchet from a
piece of stone, heads his arrows and spears with flints, and his knife
is a sharpened bone or the edge of a broken silex. His untutored mind
has not been ingenious enough to design or execute any thing so savage
or destructive as these civilized refinements on Indian barbarity. The
scalping-knife, in a beautiful scabbard which is carried under the belt,
is generally used in all Indian countries where knives have been
introduced. It is the size and shape of a butcher's knife with one edge,
manufactured at Sheffield perhaps for sixpence, and sold to the poor
Indians in these wild regions for a horse. If I should ever cross the
Atlantic, with my collection, a curious enigma would be solved for the
English people who may inquire for a scalping-knife, when they find that
every one in my collection (and hear, also, that nearly every one that
is to be seen in the Indian country, to the Rocky Mountains and the
Pacific Ocean) bears on its blade, the impress of G.R."--Catlin's
_American Indians_, vol. i., p. 236.]

[Footnote 276: See Appendix, No. LVIII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 277: The savage Cantabrians and the first inhabitants of Spain
sang songs of triumph as they were led to death and while they hung on
the cross. Strabo mentions this as a mark of their ferocity and
barbarism.--Strabo, lib. iii., p. 114.]

[Footnote 278: The American word "cannibal," of a somewhat doubtful
signification, is probably derived from the language of Hayti or that of
Porto Rico. It has passed into the languages of Europe, since the end of
the fifteenth century, as synonymous with that of Anthropophagi, "Edaces
humanarum carnium novi heluones Anthropophagi, Caribes, alias Canibales
appellati," says Peter Martyr of Anghiera, in the third decade of his
_Oceanics_, dedicated to Pope Leo X. "We were assured by all the
missionaries whom we had an opportunity of consulting, that the
Caribbees are perhaps the least anthropophagous nation of the New
Continent. We may conceive that the fury and despair with which the
unhappy Caribbees defended themselves against the Spaniards when, in
1704, a royal decree declared them slaves, may have contributed to the
reputation they have acquired of ferocity. The licendiado Rodrigo de
Figuera was appointed by the court in 1520 to decide which of the tribes
of South America might be regarded as of Caribbee race, or as
_Cannibals_, and which were Guatiaos, that is, Indians of peace, and
friends of the Castilians. Every nation that could be accused of having
devoured a prisoner after a battle was arbitrarily declared of Caribbee
race. All the tribes designated by Figuera as Caribbees wore condemned
to slavery, and might at will be sold or exterminated in
war."--Humboldt's _Personal Narrative_, vol. vi., p. 35.

Charlevoix and Lafitau speak of the cannibalism of the North American
Indians as a generally acknowledged fact: Lafitau mentions the Abenaquis
as the only tribe who held it in detestation.--Lafitau, vol. ii., p.

[Footnote 279: "On ne peut guères douter que les sauvages en faisant
fumer dans le calumet ceux dont ils recherchent l'alliance ou le
commerce, n'ayent intention de prendre le soleil pour témoin et en
quelque façon pour garant de leurs traités, car ils ne manquent jamais
de pousser la fumée vers cette astre: ... Fumer donc dans la même pipe,
en signe d'alliance, est la même chose que de boire dans la même coupe,
comme il s'est de tout tems pratiqué dans plusieurs nations."--Charlevoix,
tom. v., p. 313.

Calumet in general signifies a pipe, being a Norman word, derived from
_chalumeau_. The savages do not understand this word, for it was
introduced into Canada by the Normans when they first settled there, and
has still continued in use among the French planters. The calumet, or
pipe, is called in the Iroquois language _ganondaoe_, and by the other
savage natives, _poagau_.

Embassadors were never safe among any of the savage tribes who do not
smoke the calumet.--Lafitau, vol. ii., p. 313. At the time of the early
French writers on Indian customs, the calumet, since almost universally
in use, was only known among the tribes inhabiting Louisiana, who in
many respects were more advanced in civilization than those of the cold
northern regions.]

[Footnote 280: Wampum is the Indian name of ornaments manufactured by
the Indians from vari-colored shells[281] which they get on the shore of
the fresh-water streams, and file or cut into bits of half an inch, or
an inch in length, and perforate, giving them the shape of pieces of
broken pipe-stems, which they string on deer's sinews, or weave them
ingeniously into war-belts for the waist. The wampum is evidently meant
in the description of the _esurgny_ or _cornibolz_, given by Verazzano
in Ramusio, which has so much puzzled translators and commentators.
Lafitau and Charlevoix both describe it under the name of _porcelaine_.

"La porcelaine dont nous parlons ici, est bien différente de ces
ouvrages de porcelaine qu'on apporte de la Chine ou du Japan[282] dont
la matière est une terre beluttée et préparée. Celle ci est tirée de
certains coquillages de mer, connues en générale sous le nom de
porcelaines--celles dont nos sauvages se servent sont canelées, et
semblable pour leur figure aux coquilles de St. Jacques. Il y a de
porcelaine de deux sortes, l'une est blanche, et c'est la plus commune.
L'autre est d'un violet obscur; plus elle tire sur le noir plus elle est
estimée. La porcelaine qui sert pour les affaires d'état est toute
travaillée au petits cylindres de la longueur d'un quart de pouce et
gros à proportion. On les distribue en deux manières, en branches et en
colliers. Les branches sont composées de cylindres enfilés sans ordre, à
la suite les uns des autres comme des grains de chapelet. La porcelaine
en est ordinairement toute blanche, et on ne s'en sert que pour des
affaires d'une legère conséquence. Les colliers sont de larges
ceintures, où les petits cylindres blancs et pourpre sont disposés par
rangs et assujettès par de petites bandelettes de cuir, dont on fait un
tissu assez propre. Leur longeur, leur largueur et les grains de couleur
se proportionnent à l'importance de l'affaire. Les colliers communs et
ordinaires sont de onze rangs de cent quatre-vingt grains chacun. Le
fisc, ou le tresor public consiste principalement en ces sortes de
colliers.... Les sauvages n'ont rien de plus précieux que leur
Porcelaine: ce sont leurs bijoux, leurs pierreries. Ils en comptent
jusqu' aux grains, et cela leur tient lieu de toute richesse."--Lafitau,

Catlin writes thus in 1842: "Among the numerous tribes who have formerly
inhabited the Atlantic coast, wampum has been invariably manufactured
and highly valued as a circulating medium (instead of coins, of which
the Indians have no knowledge), so many strings, or so many hands'
breadth, being the fixed value of a horse, a gun, a robe, &c. It is a
remarkable fact, that after I passed the Mississippi I saw but very
little wampum used, and on ascending the Missouri, I do not recollect to
have seen it worn at all by the Upper Missouri Indians, although the
same materials for its manufacture are found in abundance in those
regions. Below the Lions and along the whole of our western frontier,
the different tribes are found loaded and beautifully ornamented with
it, which they can now afford to do, for they consider it of little
value, as the fur traders have ingeniously introduced an imitation of
it, manufactured by steam or otherwise, of porcelain or some composition
closely resembling it, with which they have flooded the whole Indian
country, and sold at so reduced a price as to cheapen, and consequently
destroy, the value and meaning of the original wampum, a string of which
can now but very rarely be found in any part of the country."--Catlin,
vol. i., p. 223.]

[Footnote 281: "Among the numerous shells which are found on the
sea-shore, there are some which by the English here are called clams,
and which bear some resemblance to the human ear. They have a
considerable thickness, and are chiefly white, excepting the pointed
end, which both within and without hath a blue color, between purple and
violet. The shells contain a large animal, which is eaten both by
Indians and Europeans. The shells of these clams are used by the Indians
as money, and make what they call their wampum; they likewise serve
their women for an ornament when they intend to appear in full dress.
These wampums are properly made of the purple part of the shells, which
the Indians value more than the white parts. A traveler who goes to
trade with the Indians, and is well stocked with them, may become a
considerable gainer, but if he take gold coin or bullion he will
undoubtedly be a loser; for the Indians who live farther up the country
put little or no value on the metals which we reckon so precious, as I
have frequently observed in the course of my travels. The Indians
formerly made their own wampums, though not without a great deal of
trouble; but at present the Europeans employ themselves in that way, and
get considerable profit by it."--Kalm in Pinkerton, vol. xiii., p. 455.]

[Footnote 282: "Marsden et la Comte Baldelli ont rappellé, dans leur
savans commentaires du Milione de Marco Polo, que c'est la nom de la
coquille du genere Cypræa à dos bombé (porcellanor, de porcello, en
latin porcellus, pourcelaine du père Trigault) qui a donné lieu à la
dénomination de _porcelaine_ par laquelle les peuples occidentaux ont
désigné les _Vasa Sinica_. Marco Polo se sert du mot porcellane, et pour
les coquilles _karis_, ou _couries_, employées comme monnaie dans
l'Inde, et pour la poterie fine de la Chine. ... La blancheur lustrée de
plusieurs espèces de la famille des Buccinoides, appellées de
pourcelaines au moine âge, a sans doute suffi pour faire donner aux
beaux vases céramiques de la Chine une dénomination analogue. Ces
coquilles ne sont pas entrées dans la composition de la
porcelaine."--Humboldt, _Géog. du Nouveau Continent_, tom, v., p. 106.]

[Footnote 283: "Avant d'avoir l'usage des moulins, ils brisaient leurs
grains dans les piles, ou des mortiers de bois, avec des pilons de même
matière. Hésiode nous donne la mesure de la pile et du pilon des
anciens, et de nos sauvages, dans ces paroles, 'Coupez moi une pile de
trois pieds de haut, et un pilon de la longueur de trois coudées.'
(Hesiod, _Opera et Dies_, lib. v., 411; Servius in lib. ix., Æneid.
Init.) Caton met aussi la pile et le pilon, au nombre des meubles
rustiques de son temps. Les Pisons prirent leur nom de cette manière de
piler le bled."--Lafitau.]

[Footnote 284: "Il leur suffit d'un morceau de bois recourbé de trois
doigts de largeur, attaché à un long mouche qui leur sert à sarcler la
terre, et à la remuer legèrement."--Lafitau, tom. ii., p. 76.

Catlin says that the tribe of Mandans raise a great deal of corn. This
is all done by the women, who make their hoes of the shoulder-blades of
the buffalo or elk, and dig the ground over instead of plowing it, which
is consequently done with a vast deal of labor.--Vol. i., p. 121.]

[Footnote 285: "Nothing so distinctly marks the uncivilized condition of
the North American Indian as his total ignorance of the art of
metallurgy. Forged iron has been in use among the inhabitants of our
hemisphere from time immemorial; for, though the process employed for
obtaining the malleability of a metal in its malleable state is very
complicated, yet M. de Marian has clearly proved that the several eras
at which writers have pretended to fix the discovery are entirely
fabulous."--_Lettres sur la Chine._

Consequently the weapons of brass and other instruments of metal found
in the dikes of Upper Canada, Florida, &c., are among the strongest
indications of the superiority of those ancient races of America who
have now entirely passed away.

"Know, then," says Cotton Mather, "that these doleful creatures are the
veriest ruins of mankind. They live in a country full of metals, but the
Indians were never owners of so much as a knife till we came among them.
Their name for an Englishman was 'knife-man.'"]

[Footnote 286: Chateaubriand, vol. i., p. 233; Charlevoix.

"The dances of the Red Indians form a singular and important feature
throughout the customs of the aborigines of the New World. In these are
typified, by signs well understood by the initiated, and, as it were, by
hieroglyphic action, their historical events, their projected enterprises,
their hunting, their ambuscades, and their battles, resembling in some
respects the Pyrrhic dances of the ancients."--Washington Irving's
_Columbus_, vol. ii., p. 122.

"In the province of Pasto, on the ridge of the Cordillera, I have seen
masked Indians, armed with rattles, performing savage dances around the
altar, while a Franciscan monk elevated the host."--Humboldt's _Nouveau
Espagne_, vol. i., p. 411.

See, also, Lafitau's Moeurs _des Sauvages Amériquains comparés aux
moeurs des premiers temps_, tom. i., p. 526. He refers to Plutarch, _in
Lycurgo_, for an account of similar Spartan dances.]

[Footnote 287: Charlevoix; Lafitau; Boucher, _Histoire du Canada_.

"The players prepare for their ruin by religious observances; they fast,
they watch, they pray."--Chateaubriand, vol. i., p. 240. See Appendix,
No. LIX. (see Vol II)]


While the French were busied in establishing themselves upon the banks
of the St. Lawrence, their ancient rivals steadily progressed in the
occupation of the Atlantic coasts of North America.

Generally speaking, the oldest colonies of England were founded by
private adventurers, at their own expense and risk. In most cases, the
soil of the new settlements was granted to powerful individuals or
companies of merchants, and by them made over in detail to the actual
emigrants for certain considerations. Where, however, as often occurred,
the emigrants had settled prior to the grant, or were in a condition to
disregard it, they divided the land according to their own interests and
convenience. These unrecognized proprietors prospered more rapidly than
those who were trammeled by engagements with non-resident authorities.
The right of government, as well as the nominal possession of the soil,
was usually granted in the first instance, and the new colonies were
connected with the crown of Great Britain by little more than a formal
recognition of sovereignty. But the disputes invariably arising between
the nominal proprietors and the actual settlers speedily caused, in most
cases, a dissolution of the proprietary government, and threw the
colonies one by one under royal authority.

The system then usually adopted was to place the colony under the rule
of an English governor, assisted by an upper House of Parliament, or
Council, appointed by himself, and a Lower House, possessing the power
of taxation, elected by the people. All laws, however, enacted by these
local authorities were subject to the approbation of the British crown.
This was the outline of colonial constitutions in every North American
settlement, except in those established under peculiar charters. The
habit of self-government bore its fruit of sturdy independence and
self-reliance among our transatlantic brethren, and the prospect of
political privileges offered a special temptation to the English
emigrant to embark his fortunes in the New World. At their commencement
trade was free in all, and religion in most of the new colonies; and it
was only by slow degrees that their fiscal regulations were brought
under the subordination of the mother country.

Although a general sketch of British colonization in North America is
essential to the illustration of Canadian history, it is unnecessary to
detail more than a few of the leading features of its nature and
progress, and of the causes which placed its interests in almost
perpetual antagonism with those of French settlement. This subject is
rendered not a little obscure and complicated by the contradictory
claims and statements of proprietors, merchant adventurers, and
settlers; the separation of provinces; the abandonment of old, and the
foundation of new settlements.[288]

Sir Humphrey Gilbert,[289] of Compton, in Devonshire, formed the first
plan of British colonization in America. Queen Elizabeth, who then wore
the crown, willingly granted a patent conveying most ample gifts and
powers to her worthy and distinguished subject. He was given forever all
such "heathen and barbarous countries" as he might discover, with
absolute authority therein, both by sea and land. Only homage, and a
fifth part of the gold and silver that might be obtained, was reserved
for the crown.

The first expedition of Sir Humphrey Gilbert failed in the very
commencement. The adventurers were unfortunately selected; many deserted
the cause, and others engaged in disastrous quarrels among themselves.
The chief was ultimately obliged to set out with only a few of his own
tried friends.[290] He encountered very adverse weather, and was driven
back with the loss of a ship and one of his trustiest companions[291]
(1580). This disaster was a severe blow to Sir Humphrey Gilbert, as most
of his property was embarked in the undertaking. However, with unshaken
determination, and aided by Sir George Peckham, Sir Walter Raleigh,[292]
and other distinguished men, he again equipped an expedition, and put to
sea in the year 1583.

The force with which this bold adventurer undertook to gain possession
of a new continent was miserably small. The largest vessel was but of
200 tons burden: the Delight, in which he himself sailed, was only 120
tons, and the three others composing the little fleet were even much
smaller. The crew and adventurers numbered altogether 260 men, most of
them tradesmen, mechanics, and refiners of metal. There was such
difficulty in completing even this small equipment, that some captured
pirates were taken into the service.

The expedition sailed from Concert Bay on the 11th of May, 1583. Three
days afterward, the Raleigh,[293] the largest ship of the fleet, put
back to land, under the plea that a violent sickness had broken out on
board, but, in reality, from the indisposition of the crew to risk the
enterprise. The loss of this vessel was a heavy discouragement to the
brave leaders. After many delays and difficulties from the weather and
the misconduct of his followers, Sir Humphrey Gilbert reached the shores
of Newfoundland, where he found thirty-six vessels engaged in the
fisheries. He, in virtue of his royal patent, immediately assumed
authority over them, demanding and obtaining all the supplies of which
he stood in need: he also proclaimed his own and the queen's possession
of the country. Soon, however, becoming sensible that this rocky and
dreary wilderness offered little prospect of wealth, he proceeded with
three vessels, and a crew diminished by sickness and desertion, to the
American coast. Owing to his imprudence in approaching the foggy and
dangerous shore too closely, the largest vessel[294] struck, and went to
pieces. The captain and many of the crew were lost; some of the
remainder reached Newfoundland in an open boat, after having endured
great hardships.

Sir Humphrey Gilbert altogether failed in reaching any part of the main
land of America. The weather became very bad, the winter approached, and
provisions began to fail: there was no alternative but to return, and
with bitter regret and disappointment he adopted that course. The two
remaining vessels proceeded in safety as far as the meridian of the
Azores; there, however, a terrible tempest assailed them. On the
afternoon of the 9th of September the smaller of the two boats was
observed to labor dangerously. Sir Humphrey Gilbert stood upon her deck,
holding a book in his hand, encouraging the crew. "We are as near to
heaven by sea as by land," he called out to those on board the other
vessel, as it drifted past just before nightfall. Darkness soon
concealed his little bark from sight; but for hours one small light was
seen to rise and fall, and plunge about among the furious waves. Shortly
after midnight it suddenly disappeared, and with it all trace of the
brave chief and his crew. One maimed and storm-tossed ship returned to
England of that armament which so short a time before had been sent
forth to take possession of a New World.[295]

The English nation was not diverted from the pursuit of colonial
aggrandizement by even this disastrous failure. The queen, however, was
more ready to assist by grants and patents than by pecuniary supplies.
Many plausible schemes of settlement were put forward; but the
difficulty of obtaining sufficient means of carrying them into effect,
prevented their being adopted. At length the illustrious Sir Walter
Raleigh undertook the task of colonization at his own sole charge, and
easily obtained a patent similar to that conferred upon Sir Humphrey
Gilbert. He soon sent out two small vessels, under skillful naval
officers, to search for his new government. Warned by the disasters of
their predecessors, they steered a more southerly course. When soundings
indicated an approach to land, they already observed that the breeze
from the shore was rich with delicious odors of fruits and flowers. They
proceeded very cautiously, and presently found that they had reached a
long, low coast, without harbors. The shore was flat and sandy; but
softly undulating green hills were seen in the interior, covered with a
great profusion of rich grapes. This discovery proved to be the island
of Okakoke, off North Carolina. (1584.) The English were well received
by the natives, and obtained from them many valuable skins in exchange
for trinkets. Some limited explorations were made, after which the
expedition returned to England, bearing very favorable accounts of the
new country,[296] which filled Raleigh with joy, and raised the
expectations of the whole kingdom. In honor of England's maiden queen,
the name of Virginia was given to this land of promise.

Sir Walter Raleigh now embarked nearly all his fortune in another
expedition, consisting of seven small ships, which he placed under the
able command of Sir Richard Greenville, surnamed "the Brave." The little
fleet reached Virginia on the 29th of June, 1585, and the colony was at
once landed. The principal duties of settlement were intrusted to Mr.
Ralph Lane, who proved unequal to the charge. The coast, however, was
explored for a considerable distance, and the magnificent Bay of
Chesapeake discovered.

Lane penetrated to the head of Roanoke Sound; there, without
provocation, he seized a powerful Indian chief and his son, and retained
the latter a close prisoner, in the hope, through him, of ruling the
father. The natives, exasperated at this injury, deceived the English
with false reports of great riches to be found in the interior. Lane
proceeded up the river for several days with forty men, but, suffering
much from the want of provisions, and having been once openly attacked
by the savages, he returned disheartened to the coast, where he found
that the Indians were prepared for a general rising against him, in a
confederacy formed of the surrounding tribes, headed by a subtle chief
called Pemisapan. In the mean time, however, the captive became attached
to the English, warning them of the coming danger, and naming the day
for the attack. Lane, resolving to strike the first blow, suddenly
assailed the Indians and dispersed them; afterward, at a parley, he
destroyed all the chiefs with disgraceful treachery. Henceforth the
hatred of the savages to the English became intense, and they ceased to
sow any of the lands near the settlement, with the view of starving
their dangerous visitors.

The colonists were much embarrassed by the hostilities of the Indians;
the time appointed by Raleigh and Greenville for sending them supplies
had passed; a heavy despondency fell upon their minds, and they began
earnestly to wish for a means of returning home. But, suddenly, notice
was given that a fleet of twenty-three sail was at hand, whether
friendly or hostile no one could tell: to their great joy, it proved to
be the armament of Sir Francis Drake. Lane and his followers immediately
availed themselves of this opportunity, and with the utmost haste
embarked for England, totally abandoning the settlement. (1586.) A few
days after this unworthy flight, a vessel of 100 tons, amply provided
with aid for the colony, arrived upon its deserted shores; the crew in
vain searched the coast and neighborhood for their fellow-countrymen,
and then steered for England. A fortnight after Sir Richard Greenville
arrived with three well-appointed ships, and found a lonely desert where
he had expected a flourishing colony: he also returned to England in
deep disappointment, leaving, however, a small party to hold possession
of the country till he should return with ampler resources.

The noble Raleigh was not discouraged by this unhappy complication of
errors and disasters; he immediately dispatched another expedition, with
three ships under the command of John White. But a terrible sight
presented itself on their arrival: the fort razed to the ground, the
houses ruined and overgrown with grass, and a few scattered bones, told
the fate of their countrymen. The little settlement had been assailed by
300 Indians, and all the colonists destroyed or driven into the interior
to an unknown fate. By an unfortunate error, White attacked one of the
few tribes that were friendly to the English, in the attempt to revenge
the cruel massacre. After this unhappy exploit, he was compelled, by the
discontent of his followers, to return to England, for the purpose of
procuring them supplies.[297] From various delays, it was not till 1590
that another expedition reached Virginia. But again silence and
desolation reigned upon that fatal shore. The colony left by White had
been destroyed like its predecessor. Raleigh at last abandoned the
scheme of settlement that had proved ruinously disastrous to him and all
concerned, and the brave Sir Richard Greenville was soon after slain.

The interest of the public in Virginia remained suspended till the year
1602, when Captain Bartholomew Gosnold undertook a voyage thither, and
brought back such brilliant reports of the beauty and fertility of the
country, that the dormant attention of the English toward this part of
the world was again aroused. In 1606, Arundel, Lord Wardour, sent out a
vessel under the command of Captain Weymouth, to make further
discoveries. The report of this voyage more than confirmed that of the

The English nation were now at length prepared to make an efficient
attempt to colonize the New World. In London, and at Plymouth and
Bristol, the principal maritime cities of the kingdom, the scheme found
numerous and ardent supporters. James I., however, only granted such
powers to the adventurers as suited his own narrow and arbitrary views:
he refused to sanction any sort of representative government in the
colony, and vested all power in a council appointed by himself.[299]
Virginia was, about that time, divided somewhat capriciously into two
parts: the southern portion was givens to a merchant company of London,
the northern to a merchant company of Bristol and Plymouth.[301]

The southern, or London Company, were the first to commence the work of
colonization with energy. On the 19th of December, 1606, they
dispatched an expedition of three vessels, commanded by Captain Newport,
comprising a number of people of rank and distinction. Among these was
Captain John Smith, whose admirable qualities were afterward so
conspicuously and usefully displayed. The expedition met with such
delays and difficulties that it was at one time on the point of
returning to England. At length, however, they descried an unknown cape,
and soon afterward entered Chesapeake Bay, where the beauty and
fertility of the shores even surpassed their expectations.[302] On first
landing, they met the determined hostility of the savages, but when the
fleet proceeded to Cape Comfort, they there received a more friendly
reception, and were invited ashore. The Indians spread their simple
stores of dainties before the strangers, smoked with them the calumet of
peace, and entertained them with songs and dances. As the expedition
moved higher up the bay, where no English had been before seen, it met
with a still more cordial welcome.

Jamestown was the first permanent English settlement established in
America, although it has not since risen to very great importance. The
site was chosen by this expedition about forty miles above the entrance,
upon the banks of James River, where the emigrants at once proceeded to
establish themselves. They suffered great distress from the commencement
on account of the bad quality of the provisions, furnished under
contract by Sir Thomas Smith, one of the leading members of the company.
Disease soon followed want, and in a short time fifty of the settlers
died. Under these difficult circumstances, the energy and ability of
Captain John Smith pointed him out as the only person to command, and by
the consent of all he was invested with absolute authority. He arranged
the internal affairs of the colony as he best could, and then set out to
collect supplies in the neighboring country. The Indians met him with
derision, and refused to trade with him; he therefore, urged by
necessity, drove them away, and took possession of a village well
stocked with provisions. The Indians soon returned in force and attacked
him furiously, but were easily repulsed. After their defeat they opened
a friendly intercourse, and furnished the required supplies. Smith made
several further excursions. On returning to the colony, he found that a
conspiracy had been formed among his turbulent followers to break up the
settlement and sail for England; this he managed to suppress, and soon
again started to explore the country. In this expedition he rashly
exposed himself unprotected to the assaults of the Indians, and was
taken prisoner after a most gallant attempt at escape. He was led about
in triumph for some time from village to village, and at length
sentenced to die. His head was laid upon a stone, and the executioner
stood over him with a club, awaiting the signal to slay, when
Pocahontas, daughter of the Indian chief, implored her father's mercy
for the white man. He was inexorable, and ordered the execution to
proceed; but the generous girl laid her head upon that of the intended
victim, and vowed that the death blow should strike her first. The
savage chief moved by his daughter's devotion, spared the prisoner's
life.[303] Smith was soon afterward escorted in safety to Jamestown, and
given up on a small ransom being paid to the Indians.[304] (1608.)

Smith found, on his arrival, that the colonists were fitting out a
pinnace to return to England. He, with ready decision, declared that the
preparations should be discontinued immediately, or he would sink the
little vessel. His prompt determination was successful, and the people
agreed to remain. Through the generous kindness of Pocahontas, supplies
of provisions were furnished to the settlement, till the arrival of a
vessel from England, replenished its stores. Soon after his happy
escape from the hands of the savages, Smith again started fearlessly
upon an expedition to explore the remainder of Chesapeake Bay. He sailed
in a small barge, accompanied only by twelve men, and with this slender
force completed a voyage of 3000 miles along an unknown coast, among a
fierce and generally hostile people, and depending on accident and his
own ingenuity for supplies. During several years Pocahontas continued to
visit the English, but her father was still hostile, and once endeavored
to surprise Smith and slay him in the woods; but again the generous
Indian girl saved his life at the hazard of her own: in a dark night she
ran for many miles through the forest, evading the vigilance of her
fierce countrymen, and warned him of the threatened danger. An open war
now ensued between the English and the Indians, and was continued with
great mutual injury, till a worthy gentleman named Thomas Rolfe, deeply
interested by the person and character of Pocahontas, made her his wife;
a treaty was then concluded with the Indian chief, which was henceforth
religiously observed. (1613.)

The colony[305] meanwhile proceeded with varied fortunes. The emigrants
had been very badly selected for their task: "poor gentlemen, tradesmen,
serving-men, libertines, and such like, ten times more fit to spoil a
commonwealth than either to begin or maintain one." These men were
tempted into the undertaking by hopes of sudden wealth, and were
altogether disinclined to even the slight labor of tilling that
exuberant soil, when only a subsistence was to be their reward. In 1619
James commenced the system of transporting malefactors, by sending 100
"dissolute persons" to Virginia. These men were used as laborers, or
rather slaves, but tended seriously to lower the character of the
voluntary emigration.[306] In 1625 only 1800 convicts remained alive out
of 9000 who had been transported at a cost of £15,000.[308] The
contracted and arbitrary system of the exclusive company was felt as a
great evil in the colony.[309] This body was at length superseded by the
forfeiture of its charter, and the crown assumed the direction of
affairs. Many years of alternate anarchy and tyranny followed. During
the rebellion of Bacon in 1676, the most remarkable event in this early
period of Virginian history, English troops were first introduced into
the American colonies. Sir William Berkeley, who was appointed governor
in 1642, visited the insurrectionists with a terrible vengeance, when
the death of the leader, Bacon, left them defenseless. "The old fool,"
said Charles II. (with truth), "has taken away more lives in that naked
country than I for the murder of my father." But, though the complaints
of the oppressed were heard in England with impartiality, and Berkeley
was hunted to death by public opinion on his return there to defend
himself, the permanent results of Bacon's rebellion were disastrous to
Virginia: all the measures of reform which had been attempted during
its brief success were held void, and every restrictive feature that had
been introduced into legislation by the detested governor was

Among the first settlers in Virginia, gold was the great object, it was
every where eagerly sought, but in vain. Several ships were loaded with
a sort of yellow clay, and sent to England under the belief that it
contained the most precious of metals, but it was found to be utterly
worthless. The colonists next turned their attention to the cultivation
of tobacco.[310] This speedily became so profitable that it was pursued
even to the exclusion of all other industry.

There yet remains to be told one terrible incident in the earlier story
of Virginia, an incident that resulted in the total destruction of the
Indian race. The successor to the father of Pocahontas had conceived a
deadly enmity against the English: this was embittered from day to day,
as he saw the hated white men multiplying and spreading over the hunting
grounds of his fathers. Then a fierce determination took possession of
his savage heart. For years he matured his plans, and watched the
favorable moment to crush every living stranger at a blow. He took all
his people into counsel, and such was their fidelity, and so deep the
wile of the Indian chief, that, during four years of preparation, no
warning reached the intended victims. To the last fatal moment, a
studied semblance of cordial friendship was observed; some Englishmen,
who had lost their way in the woods were kindly and carefully guided
back again.

One Friday morning (March 22d, 1622) the Indians came to the town in
great numbers, bearing presents, and finding their way into every house.
Suddenly the fierce shout of the savages broke the peaceful silence, and
the death-shriek of their victims followed. In little more than a
minute, three hundred and forty-seven, of all ages and sexes, were
struck down in this horrid massacre. The warning of an Indian converted
to Christianity saved Jamestown. The surviving English assembled there,
and began a war of extermination against the savages. By united force,
superior arms, and, it must be added, by treachery as black as that of
their enemies, the white men soon swept away the Indian race forever
from the Virginian, soil.[311]

As has been before mentioned, the northern part of Virginia was bestowed
by royal grant upon a Merchant Company of Plymouth, and other southern
and western sea-ports. The first effort to take possession of the new
territory was feeble and disastrous. Twenty-nine Englishmen and two
Indians were sent out in a little bark of only fifty-five tons burden
(1606); they were taken by the Spaniards off the coast of Hispaniola,
who treated them with great cruelty. Some time after this ill-fated
expedition had failed, another colony of 100 men, led by Captains Popham
and Gilbert, settled on the River Sagadahock, and built a fort called by
them St. George. (1607.) They abandoned the settlement, however, the
following year, and returned to England. The next project of British
North American colonization was set on foot by Captain John Smith,
already so highly distinguished in transatlantic history. (1614.) After
much difficulty, he effected the equipment of two vessels, and sailed
for the Virginian shore; but, although successful as a trading
speculation, the only permanent fruits of the voyage was a map of the
coast, which he presented to Charles I. The king, always interested in
maritime affairs, listened favorably to Smith's accounts of the New
World, but proved either unable or unwilling to render him any useful
assistance. The next year this brave adventurer again crossed the seas
in a small vessel containing only sixteen emigrants. The little
expedition was captured by the French, and the leader, with great
difficulty, effected his return to England.

Meanwhile, a man named Hunt, who had been left in charge of one of the
ships in Smith's first expedition, committed an outrage upon the natives
that led to deplorable results (1616); he inveigled thirty of them on
board, carried them suddenly away, and sold them into slavery. The
savages rose against the next English party that landed upon their
coast, and killed and wounded several in revenge. Captain Dormer, a
prudent and conciliatory person, with one of the betrayed natives, was
sent by the company to explain to the furious Indians that Hunt's crime
was the act of an individual, and not of the nation: this commission was
well and wisely executed. For about two years Dormer frequently repeated
his visits with advantage to his employers, but finally was attacked by
strange savages and wounded fatally.

But still, through all these difficulties and disasters, adventurers
pressed on to the fertile Western desert, allured by liberal grants of
land from the chartered companies. The undefined limits of these
concessions led to constant and mischievous quarrels among the settlers,
often attended with violence and bloodshed; from these causes the early
progress of the colony was very slow. One hundred and twenty years after
England had discovered North America, she only possessed a few scattered
fishing huts along the shore. But events were now at hand which at once
stamped a peculiar character upon the colonization of this part of the
New World,[312] and which were destined to exercise an influence upon
the human race of an importance even yet incalculable.


[Footnote 288: See Preface to Bancroft's _History of the United

[Footnote 289: "Sir Humphrey had published, in 1576, a treatise
concerning a northwest passage to the East Indies, which, although
tinctured with the pedantry of the age, is full of practical sense and
judicious argument."--P.F. Tytler's _Life of Sir Walter Raleigh_, p.

[Footnote 290: "Sir Walter Raleigh, step-brother to Sir Humphrey
Gilbert, was one of his companions in this enterprise, and, although it
proved unsuccessful, the instructions of Sir Humphrey could not fail to
be of service to Raleigh, who at this time was not much above
twenty-five, while the admiral must have been in the maturity of his
years and abilities."--Tytler, p. 27.]

[Footnote 291: "On its homeward passage, the small squadron of Gilbert
was dispersed and disabled by a Spanish fleet, and many of the company
were slain; but, perhaps owing to the disastrous issue of the fight, it
has been slightly noticed by the English historians."--Oldy's _Life of
Raleigh_, p. 28, 29.]

[Footnote 292: Raleigh, who had by this time risen into favor with the
queen, did not embark on the expedition, but he induced his royal
mistress to take so deep an interest in its success, that, on the eve of
its sailing from Plymouth, she commissioned him to convey to Sir H.
Gilbert her earnest wishes for his success, with a special token of
regard--a little trinket representing an anchor guided by a lady. The
following was Raleigh's letter, written from the court: "Brother--I have
sent you a token from her majesty, an anchor guided by a lady, as you
see; and, further, her highness willed me to send you word that she
wished you as great good hap and safety to your ship as if she herself
were there in person, desiring you to have care of yourself as of that
which she tendereth; and therefore, for her sake, you must provide for
it accordingly. Farther, she commandeth that you leave your picture with
me. For the rest, I leave till our meeting, or to the report of this
bearer, who would needs be the messenger of this good news. So I commit
you to the will and protection of God, who sends us such life and death
as he shall please or hath appointed. Richmond, this Friday morning.
Your true brother, WALTER RALEIGH."--This letter is indorsed as having
been received March 18, 1582-3, and it may be remarked that it settles
the doubt as to the truth of Prince's story of the golden anchor,
questioned by Campbell in his _Lives of the Admirals_. In the
_Heroologia Angliæ_, p. 65, there is a fine print of Sir Humphrey
Gilbert, taken evidently from an original picture; but, unlike the
portrait mentioned by Granger, it does not bear the device mentioned in
the text. Raleigh's letter explains this difference. When Sir Humphrey
was at Plymouth, on the eve of sailing, the queen commands him, we see,
to leave his picture with Raleigh. This must allude to a portrait
already painted; and, of course, the golden anchor then sent could not
be seen in it. Now, he perished on the voyage. The picture at Devonshire
House, mentioned by Granger, which bears this honorable badge, must,
therefore have been painted _after_ his death.--Tytler's _Raleigh_, p.
45; Granger's _Biographical History_, vol. i., p. 246; Cayley, vol. i.,
p. 31; Prince's _Worthies of Devonshire_.]

[Footnote 293: "This ship was of 200 tons burden: it had been built
under Raleigh's own eye, equipped at his expense, and commanded by
Captain Butler, her master being Thomas Davis, of Bristol."--Tytler, p.

[Footnote 294: The _Delight_. The _Swallow_ had, a short time before,
been sent home with some of the crew, who were sick. The remaining barks
were the _Golden Hind_ and the _Squirrel_, the first of forty, the last
of ten tons burden. For what reason does not appear, the admiral
insisted, against the remonstrances of his officers and crew, in having
his flag in the _Squirrel_. It was a fatal resolution. The larger
vessel, the _Golden Hind_, arrived at Falmouth on the 22d September,

[Footnote 295: See Captain Edward Haies's _Narrative of the Expedition
of Sir Humphrey Gilbert_; Hakluyt, vol. iii., p. 143-159.]

[Footnote 296: Oldy's _Life of Raleigh_, p. 58. The description given of
Virginia by the two captains in command of the expedition (Captains
Philip Amadas and Walter Barlow) was, that "the soil is the most
plentiful, sweet, fruitful, and wholesome of all the world. We found the
people most gentle, loving, faithful, void of all guile and treason, and
such as lived after the manner of the Golden Age."]

[Footnote 297: Unfortunately, on White's arrival in England, the nation
was wholly engrossed by the expected invasion of the Spanish Armada, and
Sir Richard Greenville, who was preparing to sail for Virginia, received
notice that his services were wanted at home. Raleigh, however,
contrived to send out White with two more vessels; but they were
attacked by a Spanish ship of war, and so severely shattered that they
were obliged to return. Another expedition could not be undertaken until
1590; and no trace could then, or ever after, be found of the
unfortunate colony left by White.

"Robertson reproaches Raleigh with levity in now throwing up his scheme
of a Virginian colony. But, really, when we consider that in the course
of four years he had sent out seven successive expeditions, each more
unfortunate than the other, and had spent £40,000--nearly his whole
fortune--without the least prospect of a return, it can not be viewed as
a very unaccountable caprice that he should get sick of the business,
and be glad to transfer it into other hands."--Murray, vol. i., p. 254.]

[Footnote 298: For an account of Sir Richard Greenville's death, see
Appendix, No. LX. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 299: "The fundamental idea, of the older British colonial
policy appears to have been, that wherever a man went, he carried with
him the rights of an Englishman, whatever these were supposed to be. In
the reign of James I., the state doctrine was, that most popular rights
were usurpations; and the colonists of Virginia, sent out under the
protection of government, were therefore placed under that degree of
control which the state believed itself authorized to exercise at home.
The Puritans exalted civil franchise to a republican pitch: their
colonies were therefore republican; there was no such notion as that of
an intermediate state of tutelage or semi-liberty. Hence the entire
absence of solicitude on the part of the mother country to interfere
with the internal government of the colonies arose not altogether from
neglect, but partly from principle. This is remarkably proved by the
fact that representative government was seldom expressly granted in the
early charters; _it was assumed by the colonists as a matter of right_.
Thus, to use the odd expression of the historian of Massachusetts, 'A
house of burgesses broke out in Virginia,' in 1619,[300] almost
immediately after its second settlement; and although the constitution
of James contained no such element, it was at once acceded to by the
mother country as a thing of course. No thought was ever seriously
entertained of supplying the colonies with the elements of an
aristocracy. Virginia was the only province of old foundation in which
the Church of England was established; and there it was abandoned, with
very little help, to the caprice or prejudices of the colonists, under
which it speedily decayed. The Puritans enjoyed, undisturbed, their
peculiar notions of ecclesiastical government. 'It concerned New England
always to remember that they were originally a plantation religious, not
a plantation of trade. And if any man among us make religion as twelve,
and the world as thirteen, such an one hath not the spirit of a true New
Englandman.' And when they chose to illustrate this noble principle by
decimating their own numbers by persecution, and expelling from their
limits all dissenters from their own establishment, the mother country
never exerted herself to protect or prohibit. The only ambition of the
state was to regulate the trade of its colonies: in this respect, and
this only, they were fenced round with restrictions, and watched with
the most diligent jealousy. They had a right to self-government and
self-taxation; a right to religious freedom, in the sense which they
chose themselves to put upon the word; a right to construct their
municipal polity as they pleased; but no right to control or amend the
slightest fiscal regulation of the imperial authority, however
oppressively it might bear upon them.

"Such, I say, were the general notions prevailing in England on the
subject of colonial government during the period of the foundation and
early development of our transatlantic colonies--the notions by which
the practice of government was regulated--although I do not assert that
they were framed into a consistent and logical theory. Perhaps we shall
not be far wrong in regarding Lord Chatham as the last distinguished
assertor of these principles, in an age when they had begun to be
partially superseded by newer speculations."--Merivale _On
Colonization_, vol. i., p. 102.]

[Footnote 300: Hutchinson's _History of Massachusetts_, p. 94.]

[Footnote 301: "In the spring of 1606, James I. by patent divided
Virginia into two colonies. The _southern_ included all lands between
the 34th and 41st degrees of north latitude. This was granted to the
London Company. The _northern_ included all lands between the 38th and
45th degrees of north latitude, and was granted to the Plymouth Company.
To prevent disputes about territory, the colonies were forbidden to
plant within a hundred miles of each other. There appears an
inconsistency in these grants, as the lands lying between the 38th and
41st degrees are covered by both patents.

"In the month of August, 1615, Captain John Smith arrived in England,
where he drew a map of the northern part of Virginia, and called it New
England. From this time the name of Virginia was confined to the
southern part of the colony."--Winterbottom's _History of America_, vol.
iv., p. 165. See Bancroft's _History of the United States_, vol. i., p.

[Footnote 302: Percy, in Purchas, iv., 1687.]

[Footnote 303: "This celebrated scene is preserved in a beautiful piece
of sculpture over the western door of the Rotundo of the Capitol at
Washington. The group consists of five figures, representing the precise
moment when Pocahontas, by her interposition, saved Smith from being
executed. It is the work of Capellano, a pupil of Canova's."--Thatcher's
_Indian Biography_, vol. i., p. 22. See Appendix, No. LXI., (see Vol II)
for the History of Pocahontas.]

[Footnote 304: Smith, in Pinkerton, xiii., 51-55. "The account is fully
contained in the oldest book printed in Virginia, in our Cambridge
library. It is a thin quarto, in black letter, by John Smith, printed in
1608."--Bancroft's _Hist. of the United States_, vol. i., p. 132.]

[Footnote 305: In the year 1610, the South Virginian or London Company
sealed a patent to Lord Delawarr, constituting him Governor and
Captain-General of South Virginia. His name was given to a bay and
river, and to the Indians who dwelt in the surrounding country, called
in their own tongue Lenni-Lenape, which name signifies THE ORIGINAL
PEOPLE. Lord Delawarr's health was ruined by the hardships and anxieties
he was exposed to in Virginia, and he was obliged to return to England
in little more than a year.]

[Footnote 306: Captain Smith says of Virginia, "that the number of
felons and vagabonds did bring such evil character on the place, that
some did choose to be hanged rather than go there, and _were_."--Graham's
_Rise and Progress of the United States_, vol. i., p. 71

"England adopted in the seventeenth century the system of transportation
to her North American plantations, and the example was propagated by
Cromwell, who introduced the practice of selling his political captives
as slaves to the West Indians. But the number of regular convicts was
too small, and that of free laborers too large, in the old provinces of
North America, to have allowed this infusion of a convict population to
produce much effect on the development of those communities, either in
respect of their morals or their health.[307] Our own times are the
first which have witnessed the phenomena of communities, in which the
bulk of the working people consists of felons serving out the period of
their punishment."--Merrivale, vol. ii., p. 3.]

[Footnote 307: It must be remembered that the crimes of the convicts
were chiefly political. The number transported to Virginia for social
crimes was never considerable--scarcely enough to sustain the sentiment
of pride in its scorn of the laboring population--certainly not enough
to affect its character.--Bancroft, vol. ii., p. 191.]

[Footnote 308: Stith's _Hist. of Virginia_, p. 167, 168; Chalmers's
_Annals of the United Colonies_, p. 69.]

[Footnote 309: Stith's _Hist. of Virginia_, p. 307.]

[Footnote 310: It is asserted by Camden that tobacco was first brought
into England by Mr. Ralph Lane, who went out as chief governor of
Virginia in the first expedition commanded by Sir Richard Greenville.
There can be little doubt that Lane was desired to import it by his
master, Sir Walter Raleigh, who had seen it used in France during his
residence there.--Camden, in Kennet, vol. ii., p. 509.

"There is a well-known tradition that Sir Walter first began to smoke it
privately in his study, and the servant coming in with his tankard of
ale and nutmeg, as he was intent upon his book, seeing the smoke issuing
from his mouth, threw all the liquor in his face by way of extinguishing
the fire, and, running down stairs, alarmed the family with piercing
cries that his master, before they could get up, would be burned to
ashes."--Oldy's _Life of Raleigh_, p. 74.

"King James declared himself the enemy of tobacco, and drew against it
his royal pen. In the work which he entitled 'Counterblast to Tobacco,'
he poured the most bitter reproaches on this 'vile and nauseous weed.'
He followed it up by a proclamation to restrain 'the disorderly trading
in tobacco,' as tending to a general and new corruption of both men's
bodies and minds. Parliament also took the fate of this weed into their
most solemn deliberation. Various members inveighed against it, as a
mania which infested the whole nation; that plowmen took it at the plow;
that it 'hindered' the health of the whole nation, and that thousands
had died of it. Its warmest friends ventured only to plead that, before
the final anathema was pronounced against it, a little pause might be
granted to the inhabitants of Virginia and the Somer's Isles to find
some other means of existence and trade. James's enmity did not prevent
him from endeavoring to fill his coffers by the most enormous imposts
laid upon tobacco, insomuch that the colonists were obliged for some
time to send the whole into the ports of Holland. The government of New
England, more consistently, passed a complete interdict against tobacco,
the smoke of which they compared to that of the bottomless pit. Yet
tobacco, like other proscribed objects, throve under persecution, and
achieved a final triumph over all its enemies. Indeed, the enmity
against it was in some respects beneficial to Virginia, as drawing forth
the most strict prohibitions against 'abusing and misemploying the soil
of this fruitful kingdom' to the production of so odious an article.
After all, as the impost for an average of seven years did not reach a
hundred and fifty thousand pounds, it could not have that mighty
influence, either for good or evil, which was ascribed to it by the
fears and passions of the age."--Chalmers. b. i., ch. iii., with notes.
Massaire, p. 210. Wives, p. 197, quoted by Murray.

"Frenchmen they call those tobacco plants whose leaves do not spread and
grow large, but rather spire upward and grow tall; these plants they do
not tend, not being worth their labor."--Mr. Clayton's _Letter to the
Royal Society_, 1688. _Miscellanea Curiosa_, vol. iii., p. 303-310.]

[Footnote 311: The colonists of Virginia, in a kind of manifesto
published in 1622, expressed their satisfaction at some late warlike
excursions of the Indians as a pretext for robbing and subjugating them.
"Now these cleared grounds in all their villages, which live situated in
the fruitfullest parts of the land, shall be inhabited by us, whereas
heretofore the grubbing of woods was the greatest labor. The way of
conquering them is much more easy than that of civilizing them by fair
means; for they are a rude, barbarous, and naked people, scattered in
small companies, which are helps to victory, but hinderances to
civility."--_Tracts relating to Virginia in the British Museum_, quoted
by Merrivale. See Appendix, No. LXII. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 312: "Il faut envisager surtout l'influence qu'à exercée le
Nouveau Continent sur les destinées du genre humain sous le rapport des
institutions sociales. La tourmente religieuse du seizième siècle, en
favorisant l'essor d'une libre reflexion, a préludé à la tourmente
politique des temps dans lesquels nous vivons. Le premier de ces
mouvemens a coincidé avec l'époque de l'établissement des colonies
Européennes en Amérique; le second s'est fait sentir vers la fin du
dix-huitième siècle, et a fini par briser les liens de dépendance qui
unissaient les deux mondes. Une circonstance sur laquelle on n'a
peut-être pas assez fixé l'attention publique et qui tient à ces causes
mystérieuses dont a dépendu la distribution inégale du genre humain sur
le globe, a favorisée, on pourrait dire, à rendre possible l'influence
politique que je viens de signaler. Une moitié du globe est restée si
faiblement peuple que, malgré le long travail d'une civilisation
indigène, qui a eu lieu entre les découvertes de Lief et de Colomb, sur
les côtes Américaines opposées à l'Asie, d'immenses pays dans la partie
orientale n'offroient au quinzième siècle que des tribus éparses de
peuples chasseurs. Cet état de depopulation dans des pays fertiles et
éminemment aptes à la culture de nos céreales, a permis aux Européens
d'y fonder des établissemens sur une échelle qu'aucune colonisation de
l'Asie et de l'Afrique n'a pu atteindre. Les peuples chasseurs ont été
refoulés des côtes orientales vers l'interieur, et dans le nord de
l'Amérique, sous des climats et des aspects de végétation très analogues
à ceux des îles Britanniques, il s'est forme par émigration, des la fin
de l'année 1620, des communautés dont les institutions se présentent
comme le reflet des institutions libres de la mère patrie. La Nouvelle
Angleterre n'étoit pas primitivement un établissement d'industrie et de
commerce, comme le sont encore les factoreries de l'Afrique; ce n'étoit
pas une domination sur les peuples agricoles d'une race différente,
comme l'empire Britannique dans l'Inde, et pendant longtemps, l'empire
Espagnole au Mexique et au Pérou. La Nouvelle Angleterre, qui a reçu une
première colonisation de quatre mille familles de puritains, dont
descend aujourd'hui un tiers de la population blanche des Etats Unis,
étoit un établissement religieux. La liberté civile s'y montrait des
l'origine inséparable de la liberté du culte. Or l'histoire nous revèle
que les institutions libres de l'Angleterre, de la Hollande, et de la
Suisse, malgré leur proximité, n'ont pas réagi sur les peuples de
l'Europe latine, comme ce reflet de formes de gouvernemens entièrement
democratiques qui, loin de tout ennemi extérieur, favorisés par une
tendance uniforme et constante de souvenirs et de vielles moeurs, ont
pris dans un calme longtemps prolongé, des développemens inconnus aux
temps modernes. C'est ainsi que le manque de population dans des régions
des Nouveau Continent opposées à l'Europe, et le libre et prodigieux
accroissement d'une colonisation Anglaise audelà de la grande vallée de
l'Atlantique, a puissamment contribué à changer la face politique et les
destinées de l'ancien continent. On a affirmé que si Colomb n'avoit pas
changé, selon les conseils d'Alonzo Pinzon,[313] le 7 Octobre, 1492, la
direction de sa route, qui étoit de l'est à l'ouest, et gouverné vers le
sud-ouest, il seroit entre dans le courant d'eau chaude ou Gulf Stream,
et auroit été porté vers la Floride, et de là peut-être vers le cap
Hatteras et la Virginie, incident d'une immense importance, puisqu'il
auroit pu donner aux Etats Unis, en lieu d'une population Protestante
Anglaise, une population Catholique Espagnole."--Humboldt's _Géog. du
Nouveau Continent_, tom. iii., p. 163.]

[Footnote 313: Alonzo s'étoit écrié "que son coeur lui disoit que pour
trouver la terre, il falloit gouverner vers le sud-ouest." L'inspiration
d'Alonzo étoit moins mystériuse qu'elle peut le paraître au premier
abord. Pinzon avoit vu dans la soirée passer des perroquets, et il
savoit que ces oiseaux n'alloient pas sans motif du côte du sud. Jamais
vol d'oiseau n'a eu des suites plus graves.]


The Protestant Reformation was eminently suited to the spirit of the
English people, although forced upon them in the first instance by the
absolute power of a capricious king, and unaccompanied by any
acknowledgment of those rights of toleration and individual judgment
upon which its strength seemed mainly to depend. The monarch, when
constituted the head of the Church, exacted the same spiritual obedience
from his subjects as they had formerly rendered to the Pope of Rome.
Queen Elizabeth adopted her father's principles: she favored the power
of the hierarchy, and the pomp and ceremony of external religious
observances. But the English people, shocked by the horrors of Mary's
reign, and terrified by the papal persecutions on the Continent, were
generally inclined to favor the extremes of Calvinistic simplicity, as a
supposed security against another reaction to the Romish faith. The
stern and despotic queen, encouraged by the counsels of Archbishop
Whitgift, assumed the groundless right of putting down the opinions of
the Puritans by force. (1583.) Various severities were exercised against
those who held the obnoxious doctrines; but, despite the storm of
persecution, the spirit of religious independence spread rapidly among
the sturdy people of England. At length a statute was passed of a nature
now almost incredible--secession from the Church was punishable by
banishment, and by death in case of refusal on return.[314] (1593.)

The Puritans were thus driven to extremity.[315] The followers of an
enthusiastic seceder named Brown[316] formed the first example of an
independent system: each congregation was in itself a Church, and the
spiritual power was wholly vested in its members. This sect was
persecuted to the uttermost: the leader was imprisoned in no less than
thirty-two different places, and many of his followers suffered death
itself for conscience' sake. Some of the Brownists took refuge in
Holland[317] (1598); but, impelled by a longing for an independent home,
or perhaps urged by the mysterious impulse of their great destiny, they
cast their eyes upon that stern Western shore, where the untrodden
wilderness offered them at least the "freedom to worship God." They
applied to the London Company for a grant of land, declaring that they
were "weaned from the delicate milk of their native country, and knit
together in a strict and sacred band, whom small things could not
discourage, nor small discontents cause to wish themselves home again."
After some delay they accomplished their object; however, the only
security they could obtain for religious independence was a promise
that, as long they demeaned themselves quietly, no inquiry should be

Much of the history of nations may be traced through the foundation and
progress of their colonies. Each particular era has shown, in the
settlements of the time, types of the several mother countries, examples
of their systems, and the results of their exigencies. At one time this
type is of an adventurous, at another of a religious character; now
formed by political, again by social influences. The depth and
durability of this impress may be measured by the strength of the first
motives, and the genius of the people from whom the emigration
flows.[319] The ancient colonies of Asia Minor displayed the original
characteristics of the mother country long after her states had become
utterly changed. The Roman settlements in Italy raised upon the ruins of
a subjugated nation a fabric of civilization and power that can never be
forgotten. The proud and adventurous, but ruthless spirit that
distinguished the Spanish nation at the time of their wonderful
conquests in the New World, is still exhibited in the haughty tyranny of
Cuba, and the sanguinary struggles of the South American republics. The
French Canadian of to-day retains most or many of the national
sentiments of those who crossed the Atlantic to extend the power of
France and of her proudest king. And still, in that great Anglo-Saxon
nation of the West, through the strife of democratic ambition, and amid
the toils and successes of an enormous commerce, we trace the
foundations, overgrown perhaps, but all unshaken, of that stern edifice
of civil and religious liberty[322] which the Pilgrim fathers raised
with their untiring labor, and cemented with their blood.

The peculiar nature of the first New England emigration was the result
of those strong tendencies of the British people soon afterward
strengthened into a determination sufficiently powerful to sacrifice
the monarch and subvert the Church and State.

The Brownists, or, as they are more happily called, the Pilgrim fathers,
set sail on the 12th of July, 1620, in two small vessels. There were in
all 120 souls, with a moderate supply of provisions and goods. On the
9th of November they reached Cape Cod, after a rough voyage; they had
been obliged to send one of their ships back to England. From ignorance
of the coast and from the lateness of the season, they could not find
any very advantageous place of settlement; they finally fixed upon New
Plymouth,[323] where they landed on the 21st of December. During the
remainder of the winter they suffered terribly from cold, want, and
sickness; no more than fifty remained alive when spring came to mitigate
their sufferings. The after progress of the little colony was for some
time slow and painful. The system of common property[324] had excited
grievous discontent; this tended to create an aversion to labor that was
to be productive of no more benefit to the industrious than to the idle;
in a short time it became necessary to enforce a certain degree of
exertion by the punishment of whipping. They intrusted all religious
matters to the gifted among their brethren, and would not allow of the
formation of any regular ministry. However, the unsuitableness of these
systems to men subject to the usual impulses and weakness of human
nature soon became obvious, and the first errors were gradually
corrected. In the course of ten years the population reached to 300, and
the settlement prospered considerably.

King James was not satisfied with the slow progress of American
colonization. (1620.) In the same year that the Pilgrim fathers landed
at Plymouth, he formed a new company under the title of the Grand
Council of Plymouth,[325] and appointed many people of rank and
influence to its direction. Little good, however, resulted from this
step. Though the council itself was incapable of the generous project of
planting colonies, it was ever ready to make sale of patents, which
sales, owing to Parliamentary opposition to their claims, soon became
their only source of revenue.[326] They sold to some gentlemen of
Dorchester a belt of land stretching from the Atlantic to the Pacific,
and extending three miles south of the River Charles, and three miles
north of _every_ part of the River Merrimac. Other associates in the
enterprise were sought and found in and about London: Winthrop, Johnson,
Pinchon, Eaton, Saltonstall, Billingham, famous in colonial annals.
Endicott, the first governor of the new colony, was one of the original
purchasers of the patent. They were all kindred spirits, men of
religious fervor, uniting the emotions of enthusiasm with unbending
resolution in action.

The first winter brought to these colonists the usual privation,
suffering, and death, but a now rapidly-increasing emigration more than
filled up the places of all casualties. From this period, many men of
respectability and talent,[327] especially ministers of the Gospel,
sought that religious freedom[328] in America which was denied them at
home. A general impulse was given among the commercial and industrious
classes; vessels constantly crowded from the English ports across the
Atlantic, till at length the court took the alarm. A proclamation was
issued "to restrain the disorderly transportation of his majesty's
subjects, because of the many idle and refractory humors, 'whose only or
principal end is to live beyond the reach of authority.'" It has long
been a popular story that eight emigrant ships were seized when on the
point of sailing for America, and the passengers forced to land; among
whom were John Hampden,[329] Sir Arthur Hazlerig, and Oliver Cromwell.
This tale has, however, been proved untrue by modern historians.[330]

Notwithstanding these unjust and mischievous prohibitions, a
considerable number of emigrants still found their way across the
Atlantic. But when the outburst of popular indignation swept away all
the barriers raised by a short-sighted tyranny against English freedom,
many flocked hack again to their native country to enjoy its
newly-acquired liberty. (1648.) The odious and iniquitous persecution of
the Puritans resulted in a great benefit to the human race, and gave the
first strong impulse to the spirit of resistance that ultimately
overthrew oppression. It caused, also, the colonization of New England
to be effected by a class of men far superior in industry, energy,
principle, and character to those who usually left their English homes
to seek their fortunes in new countries. That religion, for which they
had made so great a sacrifice, was the main-spring of all their social
and political systems. They were, however, too blindly zealous to
discriminate between the peculiar administration of a theocracy and the
catholic and abiding principles of the Gospel. If they did not openly
profess that the judicial law of Moses was still in force, they at any
rate openly practiced its stern enactments.

The intolerance of these martyrs of intolerance is a sad example of
human waywardness.[331] In their little commonwealth, seceders from the
established forms of faith were persecuted with an unholy zeal.
Imprisonment, banishment, and even death itself, were inflicted for that
free exercise of religious opinions which the Pilgrim fathers had
sacrificed all earthly interests to win for themselves. In those dark
days of fanatic faith or vicious skepticism, the softening influence of
true Christianity was but little felt. The stern denunciations and
terrible punishments of the Old Testament were more suited to the iron
temper of the age than the gentle dispensations of the New--the fiery
zeal of Joshua than the loving persuasiveness of St. John.

As the tenets of each successive sect rose into popularity and
influenced the majority, they became state questions,[332] distracted
the Church, and threatened the very existence of the colony. The first
schism that disturbed the peace of the settlements was raised by Roger
Williams at Salem. (1635.) This worthy and sincere enthusiast held many
just and sound views among others that were wild and injurious: he
stoutly upheld freedom of conscience, and inconveniently contested the
right of the British crown to bestow Indian lands upon Englishmen. On
the other hand, he contrived to raise a storm of fanatic hatred against
the red cross in the banner of St. George, which seriously disturbed
the state,[333] and led to violent writings and altercations. At length
Williams was banished as a distractor of the public peace, but a popular
uproar attended his departure, and the greater part of the inhabitants
were with difficulty dissuaded from following him. He retired to
Providence, Rhode Island[334] (1636), where a little colony soon settled
round him, and he there lived and died in general esteem and

The Antinomian sect shortly after excited a still more dangerous
commotion in the colony. (1637.) Mrs. Hutchinson, a Lincolnshire lady of
great zeal and determination, joined by nearly the whole female
population, adopted these views in the strongest manner. The ministers
of the church, although decided Calvinists, and firmly opposed to the
Romish doctrines of salvation by works, earnestly pressed the
reformation of heart and conduct as a test of religion. Mrs. Hutchinson
and her followers held that to inculcate any rule of life or manners was
a crime against the Holy Spirit; in their actual deportment, however, it
must be confessed that their bitterest enemies could not find grounds of
censure. With the powerful advocacy of female zeal, these doctrines
spread rapidly, and the whole colony was soon divided between "the
covenant of works and the covenant of grace;" the ardor and obstinacy of
the disputants being by no means proportioned to their full
understanding of the point[336] in dispute. Sir Harry Vane,[337] whose
rank and character had caused him to be elected governor in spite of
his youth, zealously adopted Antinomian opinions, and, in consequence,
was ejected from office by the opposite party at the ensuing election,
Mrs. Hutchinson having failed to secure in the country districts that
superiority which she possessed in the town of Boston.[338] After some
ineffectual efforts to reconcile the seceders to the Church, the new
governor and the ministers summoned a general synod of the colonial
clergy to meet at Cambridge, where, after some very turbulent
proceedings, the whole of the Antinomian doctrines were condemned.

As might have been supposed, this condemnation had but little effect.
The obnoxious principles were preached as widely and zealously as
before, till the civil authority resorted to the rude argument of force,
banished Mr. Wheelwright, one of the leaders, with two of his followers,
from the colony, and fined and disfranchised others. Mrs. Hutchinson was
ultimately accused, condemned, and ordered to leave the colony in six
months. Although she made a sort of recantation of her errors, her
inexorable judges insisted in carrying out the sentence.[339] The
unhappy lady removed to Rhode Island, where her husband, through her
influence, was elected governor, and where she was followed by many of
her devoted adherents. (1638.) Thus the persecutions in the old
settlement of Massachusetts had the same effect as those in England--of
elevating a few stubborn recusants into the founders of states and
nations. After her husband's death Mrs. Hutchinson removed into a
neighboring Dutch settlement, where she and all her family met with a
dreadful fate; they were surprised by the Indians, and every one
destroyed. (1643.)

Although by these violent and unjust punishments, and by disarming the
disaffected, the Antinomian spirit was for a time put down, unity was by
no means restored. Pride and the love of novelty continually gave birth
to new sects. Ministers, who had possessed the highest reputation in
England, saw with sorrow that their colonial churches were neglected for
the sake of ignorant and mischievous enthusiasts. Even common
profligates and rogues, when other lesser villainies had failed, assumed
the hypocritical semblance of some peculiar religion, and enjoyed their
day of popularity.

The Anabaptists next carried away the fickle affections of the
multitude, and excited the enmity of their rulers. (1643.) This schism
first became perceptible by people leaving the church when the rites of
baptism were being administered; but at length private meetings for
worship were held, attended by large congregations. The magistrates, as
usual, practiced great severities against these seceders, first by fine,
imprisonment, and even whipping; finally by banishment. The Anabaptists
were, however, not put down by the arm of power, but were speedily
forgotten in the sudden appearance of a stranger sect than any that had
hitherto appeared even in New England.

The people called Quakers had lately made their appearance in the north
of England. (1648.) They soon found their way to America, where they
were received with bitter hostility from the commencement. (1656.) The
dangerous enthusiasts who first went forth to preach the doctrines of
this strange sect were very different men from those who now command the
respect and good will of all classes by their industry, benevolence, and
love of order. The original propagandists believed that the divine
government was still administered on earth by direct and special
communication, as in the times chronicled by Holy Writ: they therefore
despised and disregarded all human authorities. To actual force, indeed,
they only opposed a passive resistance; and their patience and
obstinacy in carrying out this principle must excite astonishment, if
not admiration. But their language was most violent and abusive against
all priests and ministers, governors and magistrates.[340] The women of
this novel persuasion were even more fanatic than the men. Several
leaving their husbands and children in England, crossed the seas to bear
witness to their inspiration at Boston. They were, however, rudely
received, their books burned, and themselves either imprisoned or
scourged and banished. Nowise intimidated by these severities, several
other women brought upon themselves the vengeance of the law by frantic
and almost incredible demonstrations; and a man named Faubord endeavored
to sacrifice his first-born son under a supposed command from Heaven.

The ministers and magistrates came to the conclusion that the colony
could never enjoy peace while the Quakers continued among them. These
sectarians were altogether unmanageable by the means of ordinary power
or reason; they would neither pay fines nor work in prison, nor, when
liberated, promise to amend their conduct. The government now enacted
still more violent laws against them, one, among others, rendering them
liable to have their ears cut off for obstinacy; and yet this strange
fanaticism increased from day to day. At length the Quakers were
banished from the colony, under the threat of death in case of return.
They were, however, scarcely beyond the borders when a supposed
inspiration prompted them to retrace their steps to Boston: scarcely had
their absence been observed, when their solemn voices were again heard
denouncing the city of their persecutors.

The horrible law decreeing the punishment of death against the Quakers
had only been carried by a majority of thirteen to twelve in the
Colonial Court of Deputies, and after a strong opposition; but, to the
eternal disgrace of the local government, its atrocious provisions were
carried into effect, and four of the unhappy fanatics were judicially
murdered. The tidings of these executions filled England with horror.
Even Charles II. was moved to interpose the royal power for the
protection of at least the lives of the obnoxious sectarians. He issued
a warrant on the 9th of September, 1661, absolutely prohibiting the
punishment of death against Quakers, and directing that they should be
sent to England for trial. In consequence of this interference, no more
executions took place, but other penalties were continued with unabated

While the persecution of the Quakers and Anabaptists raged in New
England, an important addition to the numbers of the colonists was
gained, a large body of Nonconformists having fled across the Atlantic
from a fresh assault commenced against their liberties by Charles II.
This Puritan emigration was regarded with great displeasure by the king.
He speedily took an opportunity of arbitrarily depriving the colony of
its charter, and sent out Sir Edmund Andros to administrate as absolute
governor. The country soon felt painfully the despotic tyranny of their
new ruler; and the establishment of an English Church, with the usual
ritual, spread general consternation. When James ascended the throne, a
proclamation of tolerance somewhat allayed the fears of the settlers;
but the administration of temporal affairs became ruinously oppressive.
On the pretense that the titles of all land obtained under the old
charter had become void by its abrogation, new and exorbitant fees were
exacted, heavy and injudicious taxes arbitrarily imposed, and all right
of representation denied to the colonists. At length, in the year 1689,
a man, named Winslow, brought from Virginia the joyful news of the
Prince of Orange's proclamation; he was immediately arrested for
treason; but the people rose tumultuously, imprisoned the governor, and
re-established the authority of their old magistrates. On the 26th of
May, a vessel arrived with the intelligence that William and Mary had
been proclaimed in England. Although the new monarch declared himself
favorably disposed toward the colonists, he did not restore their
beloved charter. He, however, granted them a Constitution nearly similar
to that of the mother country, which rendered the people of New England
tolerably contented.

The colony was now fated to suffer from a delusion more frantic and
insane than any it had hitherto admitted, and which compromised its very
existence. The New Englanders had brought with them the belief in
witchcraft prevalent among the early reformers, and the wild and savage
wilderness where their lot was now cast tended to deepen the impressions
of superstition upon their minds. Two young girls, of the family of Mr.
Paris, minister of Salem, were suddenly afflicted with a singular
complaint, probably of an hysterical character, which baffled the united
skill of the neighboring physicians; till one, more decided than the
rest, declared that the sufferers were bewitched. From this time prayers
and fasting were the remedies adopted, and the whole town of Salem at
length joined in a day of humiliation. The patients, however, did not
improve, till an Indian servingwoman denounced another, named Tituba, as
the author of the evil. Mr. Paris assailed the accused, and tortured her
in the view of extracting a confession of guilt, which she at length
made, with many absurd particulars, hoping to appease her persecutor.
From this time the mischievous folly spread wider; a respectable
clergyman, Mr. Burroughs, was tried for witchcraft on the evidence of
five women, and condemned to death, his only defense being that he was
accused of that which had no existence, and was impossible. New charges
multiplied daily; the jails of Salem were full of the accused, and
prisoners were transferred to other towns, where the silly infection
spread, and filled the whole colony with alarm.

Nothing could afford stronger proof of the hold which this sad delusion
had taken of the popular mind than the readiness so constantly displayed
by the accused to confess the monstrous imputation, whose punishment was
infamy and death. Many detailed long consultations held with Satan for
the purpose of overthrowing the kingdom of heaven. In some cases these
confessions were the result of distempered understandings; but,
generally, they may be attributed to the hope of respite and ultimate
reprieve, as none but the supposed impenitent sorcerers were executed.
Thus only the truthful and conscientious suffered from the effects of
this odious insanity. Some among the wretched people who had confessed
witchcraft showed a subsequent disposition to retract. A man named
Samuel Wardmell, having solemnly recanted his former statement, was
tried, condemned, and executed. Despite this terrible warning, a few
others followed the conscientious but fatal example. Every one of the
sufferers during this dreadful period protested their innocence to the
last. It seems difficult to discover any adequate motives for these
atrocious and constant accusations. There is too much reason to believe
that the confiscation of the condemned persons' property, malice against
the accused, a desire to excite the public mind, and gain the notice and
favor of those in power, were generally the objects of the witnesses.

The evil at length attained such a frightful magnitude that the firmest
believers in witchcraft began to waver. In two months nineteen unhappy
victims had been executed, eight more remained under sentence of death,
150 accused were still in prison, and there was no more room for the
crowds daily brought in. No character or position was a shield against
these absurd imputations; all lay at the mercy of a few mad or malignant
beings. The first mitigation of the mischief was effected by the
governor assembling the ministers to discuss whether what was called
specter evidence should be held sufficient for the condemnation of the
accused. The assembly decided against that particular sort of evidence
being conclusive; but, at the same time, exhorted the governor to
persevere in the vigorous prosecution of witchcraft, "according to the
wholesome statutes of the English nation."[341] Public opinion,
however, soon began to run strongly against those proceedings, and
finally the governor took the bold step of pardoning all these under
sentence for witchcraft, throwing open all the prisons, and turning a
deaf ear to every accusation (January, 1693). From that time the
troubles of the afflicted were heard of no more. Those who had confessed
came forward to retract or disclaim their former statements, and the
most active judges and persecutors publicly expressed contrition for the
part they had taken in the fatal and almost incredible insanity. In the
reaction that ensued, many urged strict inquiry into the fearful
prejudices that had sacrificed innocent lives; but so general had been
the crime, that it was deemed wisest to throw a vail of oblivion over
the whole dreadful scene.[342]

While the settlers of New England were distracted by their own madness
and intolerance, they had to contend with great external difficulties
from the animosity of the Indians. The native races in this part of the
continent appear to have been in some respects superior to those
dwelling by the shores of the St. Lawrence and the Great Lake. They
acknowledged the absolute power of a sachem or king, which gave a
dangerous vigor and unity to their actions. They at first received the
English with hospitality and kindness, and the colonists, on their part,
passed laws to protect not only the persons of the natives, but to
insure them an equitable price for their lands. The narrowed limits of
their hunting-grounds, however, and the rapid advance of the white men,
soon began to alarm the Indians.[343] When their jealousy was thus
aroused, occasions of quarrel speedily presented themselves; the baneful
influence of strong liquors, largely furnished in spite of the strictest
prohibitions, increased their excitement. Some Englishmen were slain;
the murderers were seized, tried, and executed by the colonial
government, according to British law. These proceedings kindled a deep
resentment among the savages, and led to measures of retaliation at
their hands.

It has been an unfortunate feature of European settlement in America,
that the border population, those most in contact with the natives, have
been visually men of wild and desperate character, the tainted foam of
the advancing tide of civilization. Those reckless adventurers were
little scrupulous in their dealings with the simple savage; they utterly
disregarded those rights which his weakness could not defend, and by
intolerable provocation excited him to a bloody but futile resistance.
The Indians naturally confounded the whole English race with these
contemptuous oppressors, and commenced a war that resulted in their own
extermination. They did not face the English in the field, but hovered
round the border, and, with sudden surprise, overwhelmed detached posts
and settlements in a horrible destruction. The astute colonists soon
adopted the policy of forming alliances, and taking advantage of ancient
enmities to stir up hostilities among them. By this means they
accomplished the destruction of the warlike Pequods,[344] their
bitterest foes. Other enemies, however, soon came into the field, and
at length, the original allies of the English, jealous of the
encroaching power of the white strangers, also took arms against them.
The Indian chiefs, after a time, began to adopt European tactics of war,
and for many years kept the colony in alarm by their formidable attacks:
they were, however, finally driven altogether from the field.

The New England settlers showed more sincerity than other adventurers in
endeavoring to accomplish their principal professed object of
colonization, that of teaching Christianity to the Indians.[345] They
appointed zealous and pious ministers for the mission,[346] and
established a seminary for the education of the natives, whence some
scholars were to be selected to preach the Gospel among their savage
countrymen. Great obstacles were encountered in this good work; the
Indians showed a bigoted attachment to their own strange religious
conceits, and their priests and conjurers used all their powerful
influence against Christianity, denouncing in furious terms all who
forsook their creed for the English God. Despite these difficulties, a
number of savages were induced to form themselves in villages, and lead
a civilized[347] and Christian life, under the guidance of ministers of
their own race.[348] In a few years thirty congregations of "praying
Indians,"[349] their numbers amounting to 3000, were established in


[Footnote 314: 35 Eliz., c. 1, stat. 4, p. 841-843; _Parl. Hist._, p.
863; Strype's _Whitgift_, p. 414, &c.; Neale's _Puritans_, vol. i., p.
526, 527, quoted by Bancroft, vol. i., p. 290.]

[Footnote 315: "The _Gospel Advocate_ asserts that 'the judicial law of
Moses being still in force, no prince or law ought to save the lives of
(_inter alios_) heretics, willful breakers of the Sabbath, neglecters of
the sacrament without just reason.' Well may the historian of the
Puritans (Neale) say, 'Both parties agreed in asserting the necessity of
a uniformity of public worship, _and of using the sword of the
magistrate in support of their respective principles_.' It should never
be forgotten by those who are inclined to blame the severe laws passed
against these Nonconformists, that the English government was dealing
with men whose avowed wish and object it was not simply to be tolerated,
but to subvert existing institutions in Church and State, and set up in
their place those approved by themselves."--Godley's _Letters from
America_, vol. ii., p. 135.]

[Footnote 316: "The most noisy advocate of the new opinions was Brown, a
man of rashness, possessing neither true courage nor constancy. He has
acquired historical notoriety because his hot-headed indiscretion urged
him to undertake the defense of separation.... Brown eventually
purchased a living in the English Church by conformity."--Bancroft's
_History of the United States_, vol. i., p. 287.]

[Footnote 317: "But, although Holland is a country of the greatest
religious freedom, they were not better satisfied there than in England.
They were tolerated, indeed, but watched. Their zeal began to have
dangerous languor for want of opposition, and being without power and
influence, they grew tired of the indolent security of their sanctuary.
They were desirous of removing to a country where they should see no
superior."--Russell's _Modern Europe_, vol. ii., p. 427.

"They were restless from the consciousness of ability to act a more
important part on the theater of the world ... they were moved by an
enlightened desire of improving their condition ... the honorable
ambition of becoming the founders of a state."--Bancroft's _History of
the United States_, vol. i., p. 303.]

[Footnote 318: This was a promise from James I., who had now succeeded
to the throne of England.]

[Footnote 319: "A strongly-marked distinction exists between the
Southern and Northern Americans. The two extremes are formed by the New
Englanders[320] and the Virginians. The former are certainly the more
respectable. They are industrious, frugal, enterprising, regular in
their habits, pure in their manners, and strongly impressed with
sentiments of religion. The name Yankee, which we apply as one of
reproach and derision to Americans in general, is assumed by them as
their natural and appropriate designation.[321] It is a common proverb
in America, that a Yankee will live where another would starve. Their
very prosperity, however, with a certain reserve in their character, and
supposed steady attention to small gains, renders them not excessively
popular with those among whom they settle. They are charged with a
peculiar species of finesse, called 'Yankee tricks,' and the character
of being 'up to every thing' is applied to them, we know not exactly
how, in a sense of reproach. The Virginian planter, on the contrary, is
lax in principle, destitute of industry, eager in the pursuit of rough
pleasures, and demoralized by the system of negro slavery, which exists
in almost a West Indian form. Yet, with all the Americans who attempt to
draw the parallel, he seems rather the favorite. He is frank,
open-hearted, and exercising a splendid hospitality. Both Cooper and
Judge Hall report him as a complete gentleman; by which they evidently
mean, not the finished courtier, but the English country gentleman or
squire, though the opening afforded by the political constitution of his
country causes him to cultivate his mind more by reading and inquiry. A
large proportion of the most eminent and ruling statesmen in
America--Washington, Jefferson, Madison--were Virginians. Surrounded
from their infancy with ease and wealth, accustomed to despise, and to
see despised, money on a small scale, and no laborious exertions made
for its attainment, they imbibe from youth the habits and ideas of the
higher classes. Luxurious living, gaming, horse-racing, cock-fighting,
and other rough, turbulent amusements, absorb a great portion of their
life. Although, therefore, the leisure enjoyed by them, when well
improved, may have produced some very elevated and accomplished
characters, they can not, taken at the highest, be considered so
respectable a class as their somewhat despised northern brethren; and
the lower ranks are decidedly in a state of comparative moral
debasement."--Murray, vol. ii., p. 394.]

[Footnote 320: Descendants of the Puritans.]

[Footnote 321: "The word Yankees (which is the Indian corruption of
English _Yengeese_) is both offensive and incorrect as applied to any
but New Englanders."--Godley's _Letters from America_.]

[Footnote 322: "James I. ranked among their party, as much as he was
able by severe usage, all those who stood up in defense even of civil
liberty."--Bolingbroke's _Remarks upon English History_, p. 283.]

[Footnote 323: "In memory of the hospitalities which the company had
received at the last English port from which they had sailed, this
oldest New England colony obtained the name of Plymouth. The two vessels
which conveyed the Pilgrim fathers from Delft Haven were the _Mayflower_
and the _Speedwell_. The Mayflower alone proceeded to America."--Bancroft,
vol. i., p. 313.]

[Footnote 324: "Under the influence of this wild notion, the colonists
of New Plymouth, in imitation of the primitive Christians, threw all
their property into a common stock."--Robertson's _America_, book x. One
of the many errors with which the volume of Robertson teems. There was
no attempt at imitating the primitive Christians; the partnership was a
consequence of negotiation with British merchants; the colonists
preferred the system of private property, and acted upon it, as far and
as soon as was possible.--Bancroft's _History of the United States_,
vol. i., p. 306.]

[Footnote 325: "The remonstrances of the Virginia corporation and a
transient regard for the rights of the country could delay, but could
not defeat, a measure that was sustained by the personal favorites of
the monarch. King James issued to forty of his subjects, some of them
members of his household and his government, the most wealthy and
powerful of the English nobility, a patent, which in American annals,
and even in the history of the world, has but one parallel. The
territory conferred on the patentees in absolute property, with
unlimited jurisdiction, the sole powers of legislation, the appointment
of all officers and all forms of government, comprised, and at the time
was believed to comprise, much more than a million of square miles: it
was, by a single signature of King James, given away to a corporation
within the realm, composed of but forty individuals."--Bancroft, vol.
i., p. 273.]

[Footnote 326: "The very extent of the grant rendered it of little
value. The results which grew out of the concession of this charter form
a new proof, if any were wanting, of that mysterious connection of
events by which Providence leads to ends that human councils had not
conceived."--Bancroft, vol. i., p. 273.

The Grand Council of Plymouth resigned their charter in 1635.]

[Footnote 327: "The circumstance which threw a greater luster on the
colony than any other was the arrival of Mr. John Cotton, the most
esteemed of all the Puritan ministers in England. He was equally
distinguished for his learning, and for a brilliant and figurative
eloquence. He was so generally beloved that his nonconformity to the
ritual of the Established Church, of which he was a minister, was for a
considerable time disregarded. At last, however, he was called before
the ecclesiastical commission, and he determined upon emigration, 'Some
reverend and renowned ministers of our Lord' endeavored to persuade him
that the forms to which he refused obedience were 'sufferable trifles,'
and did not actually amount to a breach of the second commandment. Mr.
Cotton, however, argued so forcibly on the opposite side, that several
of the most eminent became all that he was, and afterward followed his
example. There went out with him Mr. Hooker and Mr. Stone, who were
esteemed to make 'a glorious triumvirate,' and were received in New
England with the utmost exultation. It was doubtless a severe trial to
these ministers, who appear really to have been, as they say, 'faithful,
watchful, painful, serving their flock daily with prayers and tears,'
who possessed such a reputation at home and over Europe, to find that no
sooner did any half-crazed enthusiast spring up or arrive in the colony,
that the people could be prevented only by the most odious compulsion
from deserting their churches and flocking to him in a mass. Vainly did
Mr. John Cotton strive to persuade Roger Williams, the sectary, that the
red cross on the English banner, or his wife's being in the room while
he said grace, were 'sufferable trifles,' and 'Mrs. Hutchinson and her
ladies' treated his advice and exhortations with equal disregard and
contempt. One of them sent him a pound of candles to intimate his need
of more spiritual light. This was then the freedom for which his church
and his country had been deserted."--Mather; Neale; Hutchinson.]

[Footnote 328: "Robertson is astonished that Neale (see Neale, p. 56)
should assert that freedom of religious worship was granted, when the
charter expressly asserts the king's supremacy. But this, in fact, was
never the article at which they demurred; for the spirit of loyalty was
still very strong. It seems quite clear, from the confidence with which
they went, and the manner in which they acted when there, that, though
there was no formal or written stipulation, the most full understanding
existed that very ample latitude was to be allowed in this respect. We
have seen on every occasion the vast sacrifices which kings were willing
to make in order to people their distant possessions; and the necessity
was increased by the backwardness hitherto visible."--Murray's
_America_, vol. i., p. 249.]

[Footnote 329: During the year 1635 we find the name of John Hampden
joined with those of six other gentlemen of family and fortune, who
united with the Lords Say and Brooke in making a purchase from the Earl
of Warwick of an extensive grant of land in a wide wilderness then
called Virginia, but which now forms a part of the State of Connecticut.
That these transatlantic possessions were designed by the associates
ultimately, or under certain contingencies, to serve as an asylum to
themselves and a home to their posterity, there is no room to doubt; but
it is evident that nothing short of circumstances constituting a moral
necessity would have urged persons of their rank, fortunes, and habits
of life to encounter the perils, privations, and hardships attendant
upon the pioneers of civilization in that inhospitable clime.
Accordingly, they for the present contented themselves with sending out
an agent to take possession of these territories and to build a fort.
This was done, and the town called Saybrook, from the united names of
the two noble proprietors, still preserves the memory of the enterprise.
They finally abandoned the whole design, and sold the land in 1636,
probably.--Miss Aikin's _Life of Charles I._, p. 471. Bancroft, vol. i.,
p. 384.]

[Footnote 330: "In one of these embargoed ships had actually embarked
for their voyage across the Atlantic two no less considerable personages
than John Hampden and his kinsman, Oliver Cromwell."--_Life of Hampden_,
by Lord Nugent, vol. i., p. 254. London, 1832.

Lord Nugent has fallen into the vulgar error, an invention, probably, of
the Puritan historian, and unanswerably disproved by a reference to
Parliamentary records. See Miss Aikin's _Life of Charles I._, vol. i.,
p. 472; Bancroft's _History of the United States_, vol. i., p. 411. The
exultation of the Puritan writers on the subject is excessive. They
ascribe all the subsequent misfortunes of Charles I. in connection with
the scheme of Providence to this tyrannical edict, as they call
it.--Russell's _Modern Europe_, vol. ii., p. 237. See Bancroft's
_History of the United States_, vol. i., p. 412.

"Nothing could be more barbarous than this! To impose laws on men which
in conscience they thought they could not comply with, to punish them
for their noncompliance, and continually revile them as undutiful and
disobedient subjects by reason thereof, and yet not permit them
peaceably to depart and enjoy their own opinions in a distant part of
the world, yet dependent on the sovereign: to do all this was base,
barbarous, and inhuman. But persecutors of all ages and nations are near
the same; they are without the feelings and the understandings of men.
Cromwell or Hampden could have given little opposition to the measures
of Charles in the wilds of North America. In England they engaged with
spirit against him, and he had reason to repent his hindering their
voyage. May such at all times be the reward of those who attempt to rule
over their fellow-men with rigor: may they find that they will not be
slaves to kings or priests, but that they know the rights by nature
conferred on them, and will assert them! This will make princes cautious
how they give themselves up to arbitrary counsels, and dread the
consequences of them."--Harris's _Life of Cromwell_, p. 56.]

[Footnote 331: "Mr. Dudley, one of the most respectable of the
governors, was found, at his death, with a copy of verses in his pocket,
which included the following couplet:

   "'Let men of God in court and churches watch
   O'er such as do a toleration hatch'"--CHALMERS.]

[Footnote 332: "The cutting the hair very close, which seemed supported
by St. Paul's authority, was the chief outward symbol of a Puritan. In
the case of a minister, it was considered essential that the ear should
be thoroughly uncovered. Even after the example of Dr. Owen and other
eminent divines had given a sanction to letting the hair grow, and even
to periwigs, a numerous association was formed at Boston (where Mr. John
Cotton was pastor), with Mr. Endicot, the governor, at their head, the
members of which bound themselves to stand by each other in resisting
long hair to the last extremity. Vane, a young man of birth and fashion,
continued for some time a recusant against the uncouth test of his
principles, but at last we find a letter congratulating him on having
'glorified God by cutting his hair.'"--Hutchinson's _Massachusetts_,
quoted by Murray.]

[Footnote 333: One of Williams's disciples, who held some command, cut
the cross out, and trampled it under foot. This red cross had nearly
subverted the colony. One part of the trained bands would not march
with, another would not march without it.--Mather, Neale, &c., quoted by

[Footnote 334: The town of Providence, now the capital of Rhode Island,
was founded by Williams. The Indian name was Mooshausick, but he changed
it to Providence in commemoration of his wonderful escape from
persecution.--Arfwedson, vol. i., p. 224.]

[Footnote 335: Mather, vol. vii., ch. ii.; Neale, ch. i., p. 138;
Hutchinson, p. 37, 39.]

[Footnote 336: _Ibid._]

[Footnote 337: "Mr. Controller, Sir Harry Vane's eldest son, hath left
his father, his mother, his country, and that fortune which his father
would have left him here, and is for conscience' sake gone into New
England, there to lead the rest of his days, being about twenty years of
age. He had abstained two years from taking the sacrament in England,
because he could get nobody to administer it to him standing."--_Strafford
Letters_, September, 1635, quoted by Miss Aikin, _Life of Charles I._,
vol. i., p. 479.

"Sir Harry Vane returned to England immediately after the loss of his
election. His personal experience of the uncharitableness and
intolerance exercised upon one another by men who had themselves been
the victims of a similar spirit at home, seems to have produced for some
time a tranquilizing effect upon the mind of Vane. He was reconciled to
his father, married by his direction a lady of family, obtained the
place of joint treasurer of the navy, and exhibited for some time no
hostility to the measures of the government. But his fire was smothered
only, not extinguished."--Miss Aikin's _Life of Charles I._, vol. i., p.

"After the Restoration of Charles II., Sir Harry Vane suffered death
upon the block. (See Hallam, vol. ii., p. 443.) The manner of his death
was the admiration of his times."--Bancroft, vol. ii., p. 40.]

[Footnote 338: Boston was the capital of Massachusetts, and the center
of the most fervent Puritanism.

"Boston may be ranked as the seat of the Unitarians, as Baltimore is
that of the Roman Catholics, and Philadelphia that of the Quakers.... No
axiom is more applicable to the pensive, serious, scrutinizing
inhabitant of the New England States than this: 'What I do not
understand, I reject as worthless and false;' so said one of the most
learned men of Boston to me. 'Why occupy the mind with that which is
incomprehensible? Have we not enough of that which appears clear and
plain around us?' ... The greater part of the Bostonians, including
every one of wealth, talents, and learning, have adopted this
doctrine."--Arfwedson, vol. i., p. 179.

"In Boston all the leading men are Unitarians, a creed peculiarly
acceptable to the pride and self-sufficiency of our nature, asserting,
as it does, the independence and perfectibility of man, and denying the
necessity of atonement or sanctification by supernatural influences.

"Though every where in New England the greatest possible decency and
respect with regard to morals and religion is still observed, I have no
hesitation in saying that I do not think the New Englanders a
_religious_ people. The assertion, I know, is paradoxical, but it is
nevertheless true, that is, if a strong and earnest belief be a
necessary element in a religious character: to me it seems to be its
very essence and foundation. I am not now speaking of belief in _the
truth_, but belief in something or any thing which is removed from the
action of the senses.... I am not trusting to my own limited observation
in arriving at this conclusion; I find in M. de Tocqueville's work an
assertion of the same fact. He accounts for it, indeed, in a different
way.... What I complain of is, not the absence of nominal, but of real,
heartfelt, unearthly religion, such as led the Puritan Nonconformists to
sacrifice country and kindred, and brave the dangers of the ocean and
the wilderness for the sake of what they believed God's truth. In my
opinion, those men were prejudiced and mistaken, and committed great and
grievous faults; but there was, at least, a redeeming element in their
character--that of high conscientiousness. There was no compromise of
truth, no sacrifice to expediency about them; they believed in the
invisible, and they acted on that belief. Every where the tone of
religious feeling, since that time, has been altered and relaxed, but
perhaps nowhere so much as in the land where the descendants of those
Pilgrims lived."--Godley's _Letters from America_, vol. ii., p. 90,

[Footnote 339: "The arbitrary will of the single tyrant, the excesses of
the prerogative, seem light when compared with their (the Puritans')
more intolerant, more arbitrary, and more absolute power."--_Commentaries
on the Life and Reign of Charles I._, vol. iii., p. 28, by I. D'Israeli.
London, 1830.]

[Footnote 340: Mather affirms that the Quakers used to go about saying,
"We deny thy Christ: we deny thy God, whom thou callest Father, Son, and
Spirit; thy Bible is the word of the devil." They used to rise up
suddenly in the midst of a sermon, and call upon the preacher to cease
his abomination. One writer says, "For hellish reviling of the painful
ministers of Christ, I know no people can match them." The following
epithets bestowed by Fisher on Dr. Owen are said to be fair specimens of
their usual addresses: "Thou green-headed trumpeter! thou hedgehog and
grinning dog! thou tinker! thou lizard! thou whirligig! thou firebrand!
thou louse! thou mooncalf! thou ragged tatterdemalion! thou livest in
philosophy and logic, which are of the devil." Even Penn is said to have
addressed the same respected divine as, "Thou bane of reason and beast
of the earth." When the governor or any magistrate came in sight, they
would call out, "Woe to thee, thou oppressor," and in the language of
Scripture prophecy would announce the judgments that were about to fall
upon their head.--Neale, cap. i., p. 341-345. Mather, b. vii., cap. iv.
Hutchinson, p. 196-205.]

[Footnote 341: "Sir Matthew Hale burned two persons for witchcraft in
1664. Three thousand were executed in England during the Long
Parliament. Two pretended witches were executed at Northampton in 1705.
In 1716, Mrs. Hicks and her daughter, aged nine, were hanged at
Huntingdon. The last sufferer in Scotland was in 1722, at Dornoch. The
laws against witchcraft had lain dormant for many years, when an
ignorant person attempting to revive them by finding a bill against a
poor old woman in Surrey for the practice of witchcraft, they were
repealed, 10 George II., 1736."--Viner's _Abridgement_.]

[Footnote 342: Neale, vol. ii., p. 164-170. Mather, vol. ii., p. 62-64.

Arfwedson says, "Close to the town of Salem is Beverley, a small,
insignificant place, remarkable only in the annals of history as having
formerly contained a superstitious population. Many lives have here been
cruelly sacrificed, and the barren hill is still in existence where
persons accused of witchcraft were hung upon tall trees. Tradition
points out the place where the witches of old resided. Cotton Mather
records in a work, truly original for that age, that the good people who
lived near Massachusetts Bay were every night roused from their slumbers
by the sound of a trumpet, summoning all the witches and
demons."--Cotton Mather's _Magnalia_; Arfwedson, vol. i., p. 186.

   "And thrice that night the trumpet rang,
     And rock and hill replied;
   And down the glen strange shadows sprang--
   Mortal and fiend--a wizard gang,
     Seen dimly, side by side.

   "They gathered there from every land
     That sleepeth in the sun;
   They came with spell and charm in hand,
   Waiting their master's high command--
     Slaves to the Evil One."--_Legends of New England._]

[Footnote 343: "During the war with Philip, the Indians took some
English alive, and set them upright in the ground, with this sarcasm:
'You English, since you came into this country, have grown considerably
above ground; let us now see how you will grow when planted into the
ground.'"--_Narrative of the Wars in New England_, 1675.-_Harleian
Miscellany_, vol. v., p. 400.]

[Footnote 344: "The Pequods were a powerful nation on the Connecticut
border, who could muster a thousand warriors. The English might have
found it difficult to withstand them but for an alliance with the second
most powerful people, the Narragansets, whose ancient enmity to the
Pequods for a time prevailed over their jealousy of the foreigners. But
at length, when the Pequods were nearly exterminated, the Narragansets,
seeing the power of the strangers paramount, began to side with their
enemies. The Indian chiefs began to imitate the English mode of
fighting, and even to assume English names, with some characteristic
epithet. One-eyed John, Stone-wall John, and Sagamore Sam, kept the
colony in perpetual alarm. But their most deadly and formidable enemy
was Philip, sachem of the Wampanoags. No Indian was ever more dreaded by
civilized man. A century and a half has now elapsed since this hero of
Pokanoket fell a victim to his own race, but even to this day his name
is respected, and the last object supposed to have been touched by him
in his lifetime is considered by every American as a valuable relic.
This extraordinary man, whose real name was Metacom, succeeded his
brother in the government of the Wampanoags. The wrongs and grievances
suffered by this brother, added to those which he had himself
experienced from the English colonists, induced him to engage in a war
against them. The issue might, perhaps, have been less doubtful, had not
one of his followers defeated his plans by a premature explosion before
he had time to summon and concentrate his warriors and allies. From this
time no smiles were seen on his face. But though he soon perceived that
the great enterprise he had formed was likely to be frustrated, he never
lost that elevation of soul which distinguished him to the last moments
of his life. By his exertions and energy, all the Indian nations
occupying the territory between Maine and the River Connecticut, a
distance of nearly 200 miles, took up arms. Every where the name of King
Philip was the signal for massacre and flames. But fraud and treason
soon accomplished what open warfare could not effect; his followers gave
way to numbers; his nearest relations and friends forsook him, and a
treacherous ball at last struck his heart. His head was carried round
the country in triumph, and exposed as that of a traitor; but posterity
has done him justice. Patriotism was his only crime, and his death was
that of a hero."--Arfwedson, vol. i., p. 229.]

[Footnote 345: "This was not the case in the earlier and more northern
settlements, where Mather mentions a clergyman who, from the pulpit,
alluded to this as the main object of his flock's coming out, when one
of the principal members rose and said, 'Sir, you are mistaken; our main
object was to catch fish.'"--Murray's _America_.

"To this day the Council of Massachusets, in the impress of their public
seal, have an Indian engraven, with these words: 'Come over and help
us,' alluding to Acts, xv., 9."--_Narrative of the Wars in New England_,
1675. _Harleian Miscellany_, vol. v., p. 400.]

[Footnote 346: "Among these was the celebrated Eliot. Notwithstanding
the almost incredible hardships endured by Eliot during his missionary
labors, he lived to the age of eighty-six. He expired in 1690, and has
ever since been known by the well-earned title of Apostle to the
Indians."--_Missionary Records_, p. 34.

Dr. Dwight says of him, "He was naturally qualified beyond almost any
other man for the business of a missionary. In promoting among the
Indians agriculture, health, morals, and religion, this great and good
man labored with constancy, faithfulness, and benevolence which place
his name not unworthily among those who are arranged immediately after
the apostles of our Divine Redeemer." Eliot translated the Holy
Scriptures into the Indian language. In 1661, the New Testament,
dedicated to Charles II., was printed at Cambridge, in New England, and
about three years afterward, it was followed by the Old Testament. This
was the first Bible ever printed in America; and, though the impression
consisted of 2000 copies, a second edition was required in
1685.--_Ibid._, p. 27.

"When at Harvard College, a copy of the Bible was shown me by Mr. Jared
Sparks, translated by the missionary, Father Eliot, into the Indian
tongue. It is now a dead language, although preached for several
generations to crowded congregations."--Lyell's _America_, vol. i., p.

"Eliot had become an acute grammarian by his studies at the English
university of Cambridge. Having finished his laborious and difficult
work, the Indian grammar, at the close of it, under a full sense of the
difficulties he had encountered, and the acquisition he had made, he
said, 'Prayers and pains, through faith in Christ Jesus, do any
thing.'"--_Life of Eliot_, p. 55.

"The Honorable Robert Boyle often strengthened Eliot's hands and
encouraged him in his work--he who was not more admirable among
philosophers for his discoveries in science, than he was beloved by
Christians for his active kindness and his pious spirit."--_Ibid._, p.

"Nor was Eliot alone. In the islands round Massachusetts, and within the
limits of the Plymouth patent, missionary zeal and missionary enterprise
were active; and the gentle Mayhew, forgetting the pride of learning,
endeavored to win the natives to a new religion. At a later day, he took
passage for New England to awaken interest there, and the ship in which
he sailed was never more heard of. But such had been the force of his
example, that his father, though bowed down with the weight of seventy
years, resolved on assuming the office of the son whom he had lost, and
till beyond the age of fourscore years and twelve, continued to instruct
the natives, and with the happiest results. The Indians within his
influence, though twenty times more numerous than the whites in their
immediate neighborhood, preserved an immutable friendship with
Massachusetts."--Bancroft's _Hist of the United States_, vol. ii., p.
97. See _Missionary Records_; _Life of Eliot_; Mayhew's _Indian
Converts_; T. Prince's _Account of English Ministers_.]

[Footnote 347: "History has no example to offer of any successful
attempt, however slight, to introduce civilization among savage tribes
in colonies or in their vicinity, except through the influence of
religious missionaries. This is no question of a balance of
advantages--no matter of comparison between opposite systems. I repeat
that no instance can be shown of the reclaiming of savages by any other
influence than that of religion. There are two obvious reasons why such
should be the case: the first, that religion only can supply a motive to
the governors, placed in obscure situations, and without the reach of
responsibility, to act with zeal, perseverance, and charity; the other,
that it alone can supply a motive to the governed to undergo that
alteration of habits through which the reclaimed savage must pass, and
to which the hope of mere temporal advantage will very rarely induce him
to consent." This position is well stated in the words of Southey: 'The
wealth and power of governments may be vainly employed in the endeavor
to conciliate and reclaim brute man, if religious zeal and Christian
charity, in the true import of the word, be wanting.'--Merivale _on
Colonization_, vol. i., p. 289.]

[Footnote 348: "The attempt to organize an Indian priesthood at this
period failed altogether, the converts possessing neither the steadiness
nor the sobriety requisite for the holy office. The duty, therefore,
devolved upon European teachers, who in many cases scarcely obtained the
wages of a day laborer, and that very precariously. The formation,
however, of a society in England for the propagation of the Gospel in
this settlement, and pretty liberal contributions raised in the
principal towns, in some degree remedied these evils. After the lapse of
a few more generations, the Indian character, in its slow but steady
upward progress under the teaching of devoted and enlightened Christian
ministers, underwent a change so effectual, that the native teachers and
preachers of the present day may well bear comparison in zeal, piety,
and eloquence with their European colleagues."--Catlin's _American
Indians_; Cotton's _American Lakes_.]

[Footnote 349: "The Indians about this time (1653) obtained the
appellation of 'Praying Indians,' and the court appointed Major Daniel
Gookin their ruler."--_Life of Eliot_, p. 53.]


The principal characteristics of that colonization by which the vast
republic of the West was formed, have been exhibited in the settlement
of Virginia and Massachusetts. The other states were stamped with the
impress of the two first, and in a great measure peopled from them.
Rhode Island and the rest of the New England states were founded by
those who had fled from the religious persecutions of Massachusetts,
with the exception of Connecticut, which owes its origin chiefly to the
spirit of adventure and the search for unoccupied lands. The first
settlers divided this last-named state among themselves without the
sanction of any authority, and then proceeded to form a constitution of
unexampled liberality. They had to bear the chief burden in the Indian
war, on account of their advanced and exposed position; but Connecticut
prospered in spite of every obstacle. Several Puritans of distinction
sought its shore from England. Charles II., on his restoration granted a
most liberal charter, and it continued to enjoy the benefits of complete
self-government till Massachusetts was deprived of her charter by James
II., when Connecticut shared the same fate. At the Revolution, the
younger state, more fortunate than her neighbor, was restored to all the
privileges formerly enjoyed.

The states of New Hampshire and Maine were originally founded on
Loyalist and Church of England principles. Sir Ferdinand Gorges and John
Mason, the most energetic member of the Council of Plymouth, undertook
the colonization of these districts, but their tyrannical and
injudicious conduct stunted the growth of the infant colonies, and
little progress was made till the religious dissensions of Boston
swelled their population. Violent and even fatal dissensions, however,
distracted this incongruous community, till the government of
Massachusetts assumed the sway over it, and re-established order and
prosperity. Gorges and Mason disputed for many years the rights of
authority with the new rulers; nor was the question finally settled till
Massachusetts was deprived of her charter, when a royal government was
established in New Hampshire.

The important state of New York was founded under very different
auspices from those of its neighbors. In 1609, Henry Hudson, while
sailing in the service of the Dutch East India Company, discovered the
magnificent stream which now bears his name. A small colony was soon
sent out from Holland[350] to settle the new country, and a trading
post established at the mouth of the river. Sir Samuel Argall, governor
of Virginia, conceived that this foreign settlement trenched upon the
rights granted by the English crown to its subjects, and by a display of
superior force constrained the Dutch colony to acknowledge British
sovereignty (1613);[351] but this submission became a dead letter some
years later, when large bodies of emigrants arrived from the Low
Countries (1620);[352] the little trading post soon rose into a town,
and a fort was erected for its defense. The site of this establishment
was on the island of Manhattan;[353] the founders called it New
Amsterdam. When it fell into the possession of England, the name was
changed to New York. Albany[354] was next built, at some distance up the
Hudson, as a post for the Indian trade, and thence a communication was
opened for the first time with the Northern Indian confederacy of the
Iroquois, or the Five Nations.

Charles II., from hatred to the Dutch, as well as from the desire of
aggrandizement, renewed the claims of England upon the Hudson
settlements, and in 1664 dispatched an armament of 300 men to enforce
this claim. Stuyvesant, the Dutch governor,[355] was totally unprepared
to resist the threatened attack, and after a short parley agreed to
surrender. The settlers were, however, secured in property and person,
and in the free exercise of their religion, and the greater part
remained under their new rulers. In the long naval war subsequently
carried on between England and Holland, the colony again passed for a
time under the sway of the Dutch, but at the peace was finally restored
to Great Britain. James, then Duke of York, had received from his
brother a grant of the district which now constitutes the State of New
York. On assuming authority, he appointed governors with arbitrary
power, but the colonists in assertion of their rights as Englishmen,
stoutly resisted, and even sent home Dyer, the collector of customs,
under a charge of high treason, for attempting to levy taxes without
legal authority. (1681.) The duke judged it expedient to conciliate his
sturdy transatlantic subjects, and yielded them a certain form of
representative government. In 1682, Mr. Dongan was sent out with a
commission to assemble a council of ten, and a house of assembly of
eighteen popular deputies. The new governor soon rendered himself
beloved and respected by all, although at first distrusted and disliked,
as professing the Romish faith. New York was not allowed to enjoy these
fortunate circumstances for any length of time; the capricious and
arbitrary duke, on his accession to the crown, abrogated the colonial
constitution; shortly afterward the state was annexed to Massachusetts,
the beloved governor recalled, and the despotic Andros established in
his stead. (1686.) At the first rumor of the Revolution of 1688, the
inhabitants, led by a merchant of the name of Leisler, rose in arms,
proclaimed William and Mary, and elected a house of representatives. The
new monarch sent out a Colonel Slaughter as governor, whose authority
was disputed by Leisler; however, the bold merchant was soon overcome,
and with quick severity tried and executed. (1691.) The English
Parliament, more considerate of his useful services, subsequently
reversed his attainder, and restored the forfeited estates to his
family. (1695.) With the view of aiding the resources and progress of
the colony, 3000 German Protestants, called Palatines, were subsequently
conveyed to the banks of the Hudson, and subsisted for three years, at a
great expense, by England. These sober and industrious men proved a most
valuable addition to the population.[356]

New Jersey was formed from a part of the original territory of New York.
Lord Berkeley and Sir George Carteret were the proprietors, by grant
from James (1664): they founded the new state with great judgment and
liberality, establishing the power of self-government and taxation. The
Duke of York, however, on the reconquest of the country from the Dutch,
took the opportunity of abrogating the Constitution: the colonists
boldly appealed against this tyranny, and with such force, that the duke
was led to refer the question to the judgment of the learned and upright
Sir William Jones, who gave it against him. (1681.) James was obliged to
acquiesce in this decision till he ascended the throne, when he swept
away all the rights of the colony, and annexed it, like its neighbors,
to the government of Massachusetts. After the accession of William, New
Jersey was entangled for ten years in a web of conflicting claims but
was finally established under its own independent Legislature.

The State of Maryland was so named in honor of Henrietta Maria, the
beautiful queen of Charles I., to whose influence the early settlers
were much indebted. Religious persecution in England drove forth the
founders of the colony; but in this case the Protestants were the
instigators, and the cruel laws of Queen Elizabeth's reign against the
Roman Catholics were the instruments. Lord Baltimore, an Irish peer, and
other men of distinction in the popish body, obtained from Charles I.,
as an asylum in the New World, a grant of that angle of Virginia lying
on both sides of the River Chesapeake, a district rich in soil, genial
in climate, and admirably situated for commerce. An expedition of 200
Roman Catholics, many among them men of good birth, was sent under Mr.
Calvert, Lord Baltimore's brother, to take possession of this favored
tract. (1634.) Their first care was to conciliate the Indians, in which
they eminently succeeded. The natives were even prevailed upon to
abandon their village and their cleared lands around to the strangers,
and to remove themselves contentedly to another situation.

Maryland was most honorably distinguished in the earliest times by
perfect freedom of religious opinion. Many members of the Church of
England, as well as Roman Catholics, fled thither from the persecutions
of the Puritans. The Baltimore family at first displayed great
liberality and judgment in their rule; but, as they gained confidence
from the secret support of the king to their cherished faith, their
wise moderation seems to have diminished. However, the principal
grievance brought against them was, that they had not provided by public
funds for Church of England clergymen as fully as for those of their own
faith, although by far the larger portion of the population belonged to
the flock of the former. The unsatisfactory state of morals, manners,
and religion in the colony was attributed to this neglect. At the
Revolution, the inhabitants of Maryland rose with tumultuous zeal
against their Roman Catholic lords, and published a manifesto in
justification of their proceedings, accusing Lord Baltimore's government
of intolerable tyranny. These statements, whether true or false,
afforded King William an opportunity to assume the colonial power in his
own hands, 1691, and to deprive the Calverts of all rights over the
country, except the receipt of some local taxes.[357]

For a long time but few settlers had established themselves in that part
of North America now called Carolina;[358] of these, some were men who
had fled from the persecutions of New England, and formed a little
colony round Cape Fear (1661); others were Virginians, attracted by the
rich unoccupied lands. After the restoration of Charles, however, the
energies of the British nation, no longer devoted to internal quarrels,
turned into the fields of foreign and colonial adventure. Charles
readily bestowed upon his followers vast tracts of an uncultivated
wilderness which he had never seen; and Monk, duke of Albemarle, the
Earl of Clarendon, Lords Berkeley and Ashley, Sir George Carteret, and a
few others, were created absolute lords of the new province of
Carolina. (1663.) Great exertions were then made to attract settlers;
immunity from prosecution for debt was secured to them for five years,
and, at the same time, a liberal Constitution was granted, with a
popular House of Assembly. The proprietors, anxious to perfect the work
of colonization, prevailed upon the celebrated Locke to draw up a system
of government for the new state, which, however excellent in theory,
proved practically a signal failure.[359] The principal characteristic
of the scheme was the establishment of an aristocracy with fantastic
titles of nobility,[360] who met with the deputies in a Parliament,
where, however, the council solely possessed the power of proposing new
laws. The whole colonial body was subject to the Court of Proprietors in
England, which was presided over by a chief called the Palatine,[361]
possessing nearly supreme power. The sturdy colonists neglected, or
deferred for future consideration, every portion of this new
Constitution that appeared unsuitable to their condition, alleging that
its provisions were in violation of the promises that had induced them
to adopt the country.

Carolina for a long time progressed but slowly. The colonists had no
fixed religion,[362] and their general morals and industry were very
indifferent. They drew largely upon the resources of the proprietors
without giving any return, and when at length that supply was stopped,
they resorted to every idle and iniquitous mode of raising funds. They
hunted the Indians, and sold them as slaves to the West Indies, and
their sea-ports became the resort of pirates. These atrocious and
ruinous pursuits soon reduced them to a state of miserable poverty, and
the baneful influence of a series of profligate governors completed the
mischief. One of these, named Sette Sothel,[363] was especially
conspicuous for rapacity and injustice. (1683.) His misrule at length
goaded the people into insurrection; they seized him, and were about to
send him as a prisoner to England, but released him on a promise of
renouncing the government, and leaving the colony for a time. After
these and some other commotions, they succeeded in re-establishing their
ancient charter in its original simplicity.

Carolina now began to improve rapidly, from the influx of a large and
valuable immigration. The religious freedom that had been secured under
the old charter was continued unrestricted even under Mr. Locke's
complicated Constitution. Many Puritans flocked in from Britain to seek
refuge from the persecutions of Charles II., and by their steadiness
and industry soon attained considerable wealth. New England had also
furnished her share to the new settlement of useful and energetic men
who had been expelled by her Calvinistic intolerance. But the
narrow-minded jealousy of the original emigrants soon interrupted the
prosperity of the colony. Under the hypocritical plea of zeal for the
Church of England, to which their conduct and morals were a scandal,
they obtained, by violent means, a majority of one in the Assembly, and
expelled all dissenters from the Legislature and government. They even
passed a law to depose all sectarian clergy, and devote their churches
to the services of the established religion. The oppressed Dissenters
appealed to the British Parliament for protection. In the year 1705, an
address was voted to the queen by the House of Commons, declaring the
injustice of these acts, but nothing was done to relieve the colony till
in 1721, when the people rose in insurrection, established a provisional
government, and prayed that the king, George I., would himself undertake
their rule. He granted their petition, and soon afterward purchased the
rights of the proprietors. (1727.)[364]

In the year 1732 a plan was formed for relieving the distress then
severely pressing upon England by colonizing the territory still
remaining unoccupied to the south of the Savannah. Twenty-three
trustees, men of rank and influence, were appointed for this purpose,
and the sum of £15,000 was placed at their disposal by Parliament and by
voluntary subscription. With the aid of these funds about 500 people
were forwarded to the new country, and some others went at their own
expense. In honor of the reigning king, the name of Georgia was given to
the new settlement. The lands were granted to the emigrants on
conditions of military service, and a large proportion, of them were
selected from among the hardy Scottish Highlanders and the veterans of
some German regiments. Besides being the advance guard of civilization
in the Indian country, the colony was threatened with the rival claims
of the Spaniards in Florida, the boundaries of whose territory were very
vague and uncertain. Happily for Georgia, Mr. Oglethorpe, the original
founder of the settlement, succeeded in establishing a lasting
friendship with the powerful Creek Indians, the natives of the country;
but the Spaniards never ceased to alarm and threaten the colony till
British arms had won the whole Atlantic coast. Owing to this
disadvantage, and still more to certain humane restrictions upon the
Indian trade,[365] no great influx of population took place until 1763,
when peace restored confidence, and men and money were freely introduced
from England.

One of the most important of the great American states that declared
their independence in 1783, was, with the exception of Georgia, the
latest in its origin. Under the wise and gentle influence of the
founders, however, it progressed more rapidly than any other. When time
and reflection had cooled the ardor and softened the fanaticism of the
early Quakers, the sect attracted general and just admiration by the
mild and persevering philanthropy of its most distinguished members. The
pure benevolence and patient courage of William Penn was a tower of
strength to this new creed; well born, and enjoying a competent
fortune, he possessed the means as well as the will powerfully to aid in
its advancement. He endured with patience, but with unflinching
constancy, a continual series of legal persecutions, and even the anger
of his father, until the unspotted integrity of his life and his
practical wisdom at length triumphed over prejudice and hostility, and
he was allowed the privilege of pleading before the British Parliament
in the cause of his oppressed brethren.

William Penn inherited from his father a claim against the government
for £16,000, which King Charles gladly paid by assigning to him the
territory in the New World now called Pennsylvania,[367] in honor of the
first proprietor.[368] This was a large and fertile expanse of inland
country partly taken from New York, New Jersey, and Maryland. It was
included between the 40th and 43d degrees of latitude, and bounded on
the east by the Delaware River. The enlightened and benevolent
proprietor bestowed upon the new state a Constitution that secured, as
far as human ordinance was capable, freedom of faith, thought, and
action. He formed some peculiar institutions for the promotion of peace
and good will among his brethren, and for the protection of the widow
and the orphan. By his wise and just dealings with the Indians,[369] he
gained their important confidence and friendship: he sent commissioners
to treat with them for the sale of their lands, and in the year 1682 met
the assembled chiefs near the spot where Philadelphia now stands. The
savages advanced to the place of meeting in great numbers and in warlike
guise, but as the approach of the English was announced, they laid aside
their weapons and seated themselves in quiet groups around their
chiefs.[370] Penn came forward fearlessly with a few attendants, all
unarmed, and in their usual grave and simple attire; in his hand he held
a parchment on which were written the terms of the treaty. He then spoke
in a few plain words of the friendship and justice that should rule the
actions of all men, and guide him, and them, and their children's
children. The Indians answered that they would live in peace with him
and his white brothers as long as the sun and moon shall endure. And in
the Quaker's parchment and the Indian's promise was accomplished the
peaceful conquest of that lovely wilderness, a conquest more complete,
more secure and lasting, than any that the ruthless rigor of Cortes or
the stern valor of the Puritans had ever won.

The prosperity of Pennsylvania advanced with unexampled rapidity.[371]
The founder took out with him two thousand well-chosen emigrants, and a
considerable number had preceded him to the new country. The orderly
freedom that prevailed,[372] and the perpetual peace with the
Indians,[373] gave a great advantage to this colony; emigration flowed
thither more abundantly than to any other settlement, and thus, although
of such recent origin, this state soon equaled the most successful of
its older neighbors.


[Footnote 350: "On Hudson's return according to the English historians,
he sold his title to the Dutch."--_British Encyc._, vol. ii., p. 236.
Chalmers questions, apparently on good grounds, the validity of this odd
transaction. If, as Forster asserts, Hudson not only sailed from the
Texel, but was equipped at the expense of the Dutch East India Company,
there was no room for sale or purchase of any kind to constitute the
region Dutch.--Chalmers, vol. ii., p. 568; Charlevoix. tom. i., p. 221.]

[Footnote 351: "The English jurists, referring to the wide grants of
Elizabeth, according to which Virginia extended far to the north of this
region, insist that there had long ceased to be room for any claim to it
founded on discovery. But the Dutch, who are somewhat slow in
comprehension, could not see the right which Elizabeth could have to
bestow a vast region, of the very existence of which she was ignorant.
They therefore sent out the small colony, 1613, which was soon after
compelled by Argall to acknowledge the sovereignty of England."--Murray's
_America_, vol. i., p. 331; _Fastes Chronologiques_, 1613.]

[Footnote 352: The Dutch West Indian Company was established in 1620,
and sent out colonists on a large scale.]

[Footnote 353: "Juet, the traveling companion of Hudson, called the
island on which New York is situated Manna Hatta, which means the island
of manna; in other words, a country where milk and honey flow. The name
Manhattoes is said to be derived from the great Indian god Manetho, who
is stated to have made this island his favorite place of residence on
account of its peculiar attractions."--Knickerbocker's _New York_, vol.
v., p. 1.]

[Footnote 354: "Albany bore the name of Orange when it was originally
founded by the Dutch; and as a great number of this people remained in
the city after it passed into the possession of England, they continued
to call it Orange, and the French Canadians give it no other
name."--Charlevoix, tom. i., p. 222.

"Albany received that name from the Scottish title of the Duke of

[Footnote 355: Nine years before (1655), Stuyvesant had attacked the
happy and contented little colony of Swedes who were settled on the
banks of the Delaware, and after a sanguinary contest, the Swedish
governor, John Rising, was obliged to submit to the Dutch authority.
Such was the end of New Sweden, which had only maintained an independent
existence for seventeen years. Thus the Swedish settlements passed into
the hands of the English at the same time as those of the Dutch. The
first Swedish colonization had been projected and encouraged by the
great Gustavus Adolphus in 1638. They gave their settlement on the banks
of the Delaware, the name of the Land of Canaan, and to the spot where
they first landed that of Canaan, so inviting and delightful did this
part of the New World first appear to them. The only thing now known of
this terrestrial paradise is, that its situation was near Cape Henlopen,
a short distance from the sea. The colonists purchased tracts of lands
of the Indians, and threw up a few fortifications; of the city they
founded, Christina, there is now no trace. It was situated near
Wilmington, twenty-seven miles south of Philadelphia. The Dutch, whose
principal city was then New Amsterdam, pretended that the country round
the Delaware belonged to them, having paid it a visit before the arrival
of the Swedes. This insinuation, moreover, did not prevent the latter
from settling, and, according to Charlevoix, the two nations lived in
amity with each other until Stuyvesant's aggression, the Dutch being
wholly devoted to commerce and the Swedes to agriculture. The Swedish
settlement was at first called New Sweden, afterward New Jersey.]

[Footnote 356: "The entire cost of this transportation amounted to
£78,533, which, amid the ferments of party, was declared by a subsequent
vote of Parliament to be not only an extravagant and unreasonable charge
to the kingdom, but of dangerous consequence to the Church."--_Brit.
Emp. Amer._, vol. i., p. 249, 250.

"Swabia, with the old Palatinate, has contributed very largely to the
present population of America. From the end of Queen Anne's reign to
1753, it is said that from 4 to 8000 went annually to Pennsylvania
alone."--Sadler, b. iv., cap. v.]

[Footnote 357: "King William, impatient of judicial forms, by his own
act constituted Maryland a royal government. The arbitrary act was
sanctioned by a legal opinion from Lord Holt. The Church of England was
established as the religion of the state.... In the land which Catholics
had opened to Protestants, the Catholic inhabitant was the sole victim
to Anglican intolerance. Mass might not be said publicly.... No Catholic
might teach the young.... The disfranchisement of the proprietary Lord
Baltimore related to his creed, not to his family. To recover the
inheritance of authority, Benedict, the son of the proprietary,
renounced the Catholic Church for that of England. The persecution never
crushed the faith of the humble colonists."--Bancroft, vol. iii., p.

[Footnote 358: This name was given in honor of Charles II.]

[Footnote 359: "The system framed by Locke was called 'the Fundamental
Constitutions of Carolina.' ... Locke was undoubtedly well acquainted
with human nature, and not ignorant of the world; but he had not taken a
sufficiently comprehensive view of the history of man, nor were
political speculators yet duly aware of the necessity of adapting
constitutions to those for whom they were destined. The grand
peculiarity consisted in forming a high and titled nobility, which might
rival the splendor of those of the Old World. But as the dukes and earls
of England would have considered their titles degraded by being shared
with a Carolina planter, other titles of foreign origin were adopted.
That of landgrave was drawn from Germany. (Locke himself was created a
landgrave.) But these princely denominations, applied to persons who
were to earn their bread by the labor of their hands, could confer no
real dignity. The reverence for nobility, which can only be the result
of long-continued wealth and influence, could never be inspired by mere
titles, especially of such an exotic and fantastic character.... The
sanction of negro slavery was a deep blot in this boasted system.... The
colonists, who felt perfectly at ease under their rude early
regulations, were struck with dismay at the arrival of this
philosophical fabric of polity."--Murray's _America_, vol. i., p. 343.]

[Footnote 360: "It was insisted that there should be some landgraves and
some caciques when many other parts of 'the Fundamental Constitutions'
were given up; but these great nobles never struck any root in the
Western soil, and have long since disappeared "--_Hist. Acc. of the
Colonization of South Carolina and Georgia_, London, 1779, vol. i., p.
44-46; Chalmers, p. 326. quoted by Murray.]

[Footnote 361: Monk, duke of Albemarle, was constituted palatine.]

[Footnote 362: "It is remarkable that the philosopher's colony seems to
have been the only one founded before the eighteenth century, except
Virginia, in which the Church of England was expressly established; but
this clause is said to have been introduced against his will."--Merivale
_on Colonization_, vol. i., p. 88-92.]

[Footnote 363: "Mr. Chalmers makes the very bold assertion that the
annals of delegated authority do not present a name so branded with
merited infamy, and that there never had taken place such an
accumulation of extortion, injustice, and rapacity as during the five
years that he misruled the colony. He had been made prisoner in his way
out, and kept in close captivity at Algiers, where he took, it appears,
not warning, but lessons. (Sette Sothel had purchased the rights of Lord
Clarendon, one of the eight original proprietaries.)"--Murray, vol. i.,
p. 345.]

[Footnote 364: "The rights of the proprietors were sold to the king for
about the sum of £20,000. Lord Carteret alone, joining in the surrender
of the government, received an eighth share in the soil."--_Hist.
Account_, &c., vol. i., p. 255-321.]

[Footnote 365: "The importation and use of negroes were prohibited; no
rum was allowed to be introduced, and no one was permitted to trade with
the Indians without special license. The colonists complained that
without negroes it was impossible to clear the grounds and cut down the
thick forests, though the honest Highlanders always reprobated the
practice, and denied that any necessity for it existed."[366]--Murray,
vol. i., p. 360.]

[Footnote 366: "Slavery," says Oglethorpe, "is against the Gospel, as
well as the fundamental law of England. We refused, as trustees, to make
a law permitting such a horrid crime."--_Memoirs of Sharpe_, vol. i., p.
234; _Stephen's Journal_, quoted by Bancroft. In 1751, however, after
Oglethorpe had finally left Georgia, his humane restrictions were
withdrawn. Whitefield, who believed that God's providence would
certainly make slavery terminate for the advantage of the Africans,
pleaded before the trustees in its favor. At last even the Moravians
(who in a body emigrated to Georgia in 1733) began to think that negro
slaves might be employed in a Christian spirit, and it was agreed that
if the negroes are treated in a Christian manner, their change of
country would prove to them a benefit. A message from Germany served to
crush their scruples: "If you take slaves in faith, and with the intent
of conducting them to Christ, the action will not be a sin, but may
prove a benediction."--Urlsperger, vol. iii., p. 479, quoted by
Bancroft, vol. iii., p. 448.]

[Footnote 367: "He accepted this grant, because it secured them against
any other claimant from Europe. It gave him a title in the eyes of the
Christian world, but he did not believe that it gave him any other
title."--_Colonization and Civilization_, p. 358.]

[Footnote 368: "Etablissement de la Pennsylvanie, dans le pays qui avoit
porté le nom de Nouvelle Suéde: Cette colonie a reçu son nom de son
fondateur, le Chevalier Guillaume Penn, Anglais à qui Charles II., Roi
de la Grande Bretagne, conceda ce pays en 1680 et qui cette année 1681,
y mena les Quakers ou trembleurs d'Angleterre, dont il étoit le chef.
Lorsqu'il y arriva, il y trouva un grand nombre de Hollandois et de
Suédois. Les premiers, pour la plupart, occupoient les endroits situés
le long du golphe, et les seconds, les bords de la Rivière De la Warr,
ou du midi. Il paroit par une de ses lettres, qu'il n'étoit pas content
des Hollandois; mais il dit que les Suédois étoient une nation simple,
sans malice, industrieuse, robuste, se souciant peu de l'abondance et se
contentant du nécessaire."--_Fastes Chronologiques_, 1681.]

[Footnote 369: "Even Penn, however, did not fully admit into his scheme
of colonization the notion of retaining for the Indians a property in a
part of the soil they once occupied. He gave the natives free leave to
settle in certain parts of his territory, but, unfortunately, he did not
treat any definite tract of the soil as their property, which would rise
in value along with other tracts, and thus afford a stimulus to their
gradual improvement. It was the want of systematic views in this and
other respects, which rendered the benevolent intentions of Penn toward
the natives of little ultimate avail; so that, after all, the chief good
which he effected was by setting an example of benevolence and justice
in the principle of his dealings with them."--Merivale _on
Colonization_, vol. ii., p. 173.]

[Footnote 370: "William Penn of course came unarmed, in his usual plain
dress, without banners, or mace, or guard, or carriages, and only
distinguished from his companions by wearing a blue sash of silk
net-work (which, it seems, is still preserved by Mr. Kett, of Seething
Hall, near Norwich), and by having in his hand a roll of parchment, on
which was engrossed the confirmation of the treaty of purchase and
amity."--_Edinburgh Review of Clarkson's Life of William Penn_, p. 358.

"The scene at Shachamaxon, quoted by Howitt, forms the subject of one of
the pictures of West. Thus ended this famous treaty, of which Voltaire
has remarked with so much truth and severity, 'That it was the only one
ever concluded which was not ratified by an oath, and the only one that
never was broken.'"--Howitt. p. 360.]

[Footnote 371: "In three years from its foundation, Philadelphia gained
more than New York had done in half a century."--Bancroft's _History of
the United States_, vol. ii., p. 394.]

[Footnote 372: "Virtue had never, perhaps, inspired a legislation better
calculated to promote the fidelity of mankind. The opinions, the
sentiments, and the morals corrected whatever might be deficient in
it."--Raynal, vol. vii., p. 292.

"Beautiful," said the philosophic Frederick of Prussia, when he read the
account of the government of Pennsylvania; "it is perfect, if it can
endure."--Herder, p. 13, 116. Quoted by Bancroft, vol. ii., p. 392.]

[Footnote 373: "Their conduct to the Indians never altered for the
worse. Pennsylvania, while under the administration of the Quakers,
never became, as New England, a slaughter-house of the Indians."--Howitt,
p. 366.]


Having noticed the principal features of the origin and progress of the
English colonies--the powerful and dangerous neighbors of the French
settlements in the New World--it is now time to return to the course of
Canadian history subsequent to the death of the illustrious founder of

Monsieur de Montmagny succeeded Champlain as governor, and entered with
zeal into his plans, but difficulties accumulated on all sides. Men and
money were wanting, trade languished, and the Associated Company in
France were daily becoming more indifferent to the success of the
colony. Some few merchants and inhabitants of the outposts, indeed,
were enriched by the profitable dealings of the fur-trade, but their
suddenly-acquired wealth excited the jealousy rather than increased the
general prosperity of the settlers. The work of religious institutions
was alone pursued with vigor and success in those times of failure and
discouragement. At Sillery, one league from Quebec, an establishment was
founded for the instruction of the savages and the diffusion of
Christian light. (1637.) The Hôtel Dieu owed its existence to the
Duchesse d'Aiguillon two years afterward, and the Convent of the
Ursulines was founded by the pious and high-born Madame de la

The partial success and subsequent failure of Champlain and his Indian
allies in their encounters with the Iroquois had emboldened these brave
and politic savages. They now captured several canoes belonging to the
Hurons, laden with furs, which that friendly people were conveying to
Quebec. Montmagny's military force was too small to allow of his
avenging this insult; he, however, zealously promoted an enterprise to
build a fort and effect a settlement on the island of Montreal, which he
fondly hoped would curb the audacity of his savage foes. The Associated
Company would render no aid whatever to this important plan, but the
religious zeal of the Abbé Olivier overcame all difficulties. He
obtained a grant of Montreal from the king, and dispatched the Sieur de
Maisonneuve and others to take possession. On the 17th of May, 1641, the
place destined for the settlement was consecrated by the superior of the

At the same time the governor erected a fort at the entrance of the
River Richelieu, then called the Iroquois. The workmen employed at this
labor were constantly exposed to the harassing warfare of the Indians,
but at length completely repulsed them. A garrison, such as could be
spared from the scanty militia of the colony, was placed in the little
stronghold for its defense. Although the minds of the fierce Iroquois
were fixed upon the utter destruction of the French, and in their
confident boastings they declared that they could drive the white men
into the sea, they indicated from time to time a desire for peace.
Montmagny was compelled by weakness and the difficulties of his
situation, to accept overtures which he could not but dread as insidious
and treacherous, and he assumed an air of confidence which he by no
means felt. His native allies were also eagerly anxious for the
blessings of peace, and, through their means, an opportunity for opening
negotiations soon offered. The governor and the friendly native chiefs
met the deputies of the Iroquois nation at Three Rivers to arrange the
terms of the proposed treaty. (1645.) After various orations, songs,
dances, and exchanges of presents, peace was concluded to the
satisfaction of both parties; and for the time at least, with apparent
good faith, for the following winter the French and their new allies
joined together in the chase, and mixed fearlessly in friendly

M. de Montmagny was superseded as governor of Canada by M. d'Ailleboust
in the year 1647. He had proved himself a man of judgment, courage, and
virtue, and had gained the love of the settlers and Indians, as well as
the approval of the court. But, in consequence of the governor of the
American islands having recently refused to surrender office to a person
appointed by the king, it was decreed that no one should hold the
government of a colony for more than three years. M. d'Ailleboust was a
man of ability and worth, and, having held the command at Three Rivers
for some time, was also experienced in colonial affairs, but he received
no more support from home than his predecessor; and, despite his best
efforts, New France continued to languish under his rule.

The colony, however, was now free from the scourge of savage hostility.
The Indians turned their subtle craft and terrible energy to the chase
instead of war. From the far-distant hunting-grounds of the St. Maurice
and of the gloomy Saguenay, they crowded to Three Rivers and Tadoussac
with the spoils of the forest animals. At those settlements the trade
went briskly on, and many of the natives became domesticated among their
white neighbors. The worthy priests were not slow to take advantage of
this favorable opportunity; many of the hunters from the north, who were
attracted to the French villages by the fur trade, were told the great
tidings of redemption; and usually, when they returned the following
year, they were accompanied by others, who desired, with them, to
receive the rites of baptism.[376]

The most numerous and pious of the proselytes were of the Huron tribe,
an indolent and unwarlike race, against whom the bold and powerful
Iroquois held deadly feud, which the existing peace only kept in
abeyance till opportunity might arise for effective action. The little
settlement of St. Joseph was the place where first an Indian
congregation assembled for Christian worship; the Father Antoine Daniel
was the pastor; the flock were of the Huron tribe. Faith in treaties and
long-continued tranquillity had lulled this unhappy people into a fatal
security, and all cautions were forgotten,[377] when, on the morning of
the 4th of July, 1648, while the missionary was performing service,
there suddenly arose a cry of terror that the Iroquois were at hand.
None but old men, women, and children were in the village at the time;
of this the crafty enemy were aware; they had crept silently through the
woods, and lain in ambush till morning gave them light for the foul
massacre. Not one of the inhabitants escaped, and last of all, the good
priest was likewise slain.

During this year the first communication passed between the French and
British North American colonies. An envoy arrived at Quebec from New
England, bearing proposals for a lasting peace with Canada, not to be
interrupted even by the wars of the mother countries. M. d'Ailleboust
gladly entertained the wise proposition, and sent a deputy to Boston
with full powers to treat, providing only that the English would consent
to aid him against the Iroquois. But the cautious Puritans would not
compromise themselves by this stipulation. They were sufficiently remote
from the fierce and formidable savages of the Five Nations to be free
from present apprehension, and to their steady and industrious habits
the plow was more suitable than the sword. The negotiation, therefore,
totally failed, which was probably of little consequence, for it is
difficult to perceive how these remote and feeble colonies could have
preserved a neutrality in the contentions of England and France, which
was impossible even to powerful states.

After a treacherous calm of some six months' duration, the unhappy
Hurons again relapsed into a fatal security; the terrible lessons of the
past were forgotten in the apparent tranquillity of the present. Watch
and ward were relaxed, and again they lay at the mercy of their ruthless
enemies. When least expected, 1000 Iroquois warriors started up from the
thick coverts of a neighboring forest, and fell fiercely upon the
defenseless Hurons, burned two of their villages, exterminated the
inhabitants, and put two French missionaries to death with horrible
tortures. Then the remnant of the defeated tribe despaired; the alliance
of the French had only embittered the hostility of their enemies without
affording protection; therefore they arose and deserted their villages
and hunting grounds, wandering away, some into the northern forests,
others as suppliants among neighboring nations.

The greater body of the Hurons, however, attached themselves to the
fortunes of the missionaries, and under them formed a settlement on the
island of St. Joseph, but they neglected to cultivate the land. As the
autumn advanced, the resources of the chase became exhausted, and the
horrors of famine commenced. They were shortly reduced to the most
dreadful extremities of suffering; every direst expedient that
starvation could prompt and despair execute was resorted to for a few
days' prolonging of life. Then came the scourge of contagious fever,
sweeping numbers away with desolating fury. While these terrible
calamities raged among the Hurons, the Iroquois seized the opportunity
of again invading them. The village of St. John, containing nearly 3000
souls, was the first point of attack. The feeble inhabitants offered no
resistance, and, with their missionary, were totally destroyed. Most of
the remnant of this unhappy tribe then took the resolution of presenting
themselves to their conquerors, and were received into the Iroquois
nation. The few who still remained wandering in the forests were hunted
down like wolves, and soon exterminated.

The terror of the Iroquois name now spread rapidly along the shores of
the great lakes and rivers of the north. The fertile banks of the
Ottawa, once the dwelling-place of numerous and powerful tribes, became
suddenly deserted, and no one could tell whither the inhabitants had

About this time was introduced among the Montagnez, and the other tribes
of the Saguenay country, an evil more destructive than even the tomahawk
of the Iroquois--the "accursed fire-water;" despite the most earnest
efforts of the governor, the fur traders at Tadoussac supplied the
Indians with this fatal luxury. In a short time, intoxication and its
dreadful consequences became so frequent, that the native chiefs prayed
the governor to imprison all drunkards. At Three Rivers, however, the
wise precautions of the authorities preserved the infant settlement from
this monstrous calamity.

In the year 1650 M. d'Ailleboust was worthily succeeded by M. de Lauson,
one of the principals of the Associated Company. The new governor found
affairs in a very discouraging condition, the colony rapidly declining,
and the Iroquois, flushed by their sanguinary triumphs, more audacious
than ever. These fierce savages intruded fearlessly among the French
settlements, despising forts and intrenchments, and insulting the
inhabitants with impunity. The island of Montreal suffered so much from
their incursions, that M. de Maisonneuve, the governor, was obliged to
repair to France to seek succors, for which he had vainly applied by
letter. He returned in the year 1653 with a timely re-enforcement of 100

Although the Iroquois had now overcome or destroyed all their native
enemies, and proved their strength even against the Europeans, some of
their tribes were more than ever disposed to a union with the white men.
The Onnontagués dispatched an embassy to Quebec to request that the
governor would send a colony of Frenchmen among them. He readily acceded
to the proposition, and fifty men were chosen for the establishment,
with the Sieur Dupuys for their commander. Four missionaries were
appointed to found the first Iroquois church; and to supply temporal
wants, provisions for a year, and sufficient seed to sow the lands about
to be appropriated, were sent with the expedition. This design excited
the jealousy of the other Iroquois tribes; the Agniers even tried to
intercept the colonists with a force of 400 warriors; they, however,
only succeeded in pillaging a few of the canoes that had fallen behind.
The same war party soon after made an onslaught upon ninety Hurons,
working on the Isle of Orleans under French protection, slew six, and
carried off the rest into captivity. As they passed before Quebec they
made their unhappy prisoners sing aloud, insultingly attracting the
attention of the garrison. The marauders were not pursued; they dragged
the prisoners to their villages, burned the chiefs, and condemned the
rest to a cruel bondage. M. de Lauson can hardly be excused for thus
suffering his allies to be torn from under his protection without an
effort to save them from their merciless enemies. These unfortunates had
been converted to Christianity, which increased the rage and ferocity of
the captors against them. One brave chief, whose tortures had been
prolonged for three days as a worshiper of the God of the white men,
bore himself faithfully to the last, and died with the Saviour's blessed
name upon his quivering lip.

In the mean time the expedition to the country of the Onnontagués
suffered great privations, and only escaped starvation by the generosity
of the natives. Their spiritual mission was, however, at first eminently
successful, the whole nation seeming disposed to adopt the Christian
faith. But the allied tribes having carried their insolence to an
intolerable degree, and massacred three Frenchmen near Montreal, the
commandant at Quebec seized all the Iroquois within his reach, and
demanded redress. The answer of the haughty savages was, to prepare for
war. Dupuys and his little colony were now in a most perilous position:
there was no hope of aid from Quebec, and but little chance of being
able to escape from among their dangerous neighbors. They labored
diligently and secretly to construct a sufficient number of canoes to
carry them away in case some happy opportunity might arise, and found
means to warn the people of Quebec of the coming danger. By great
industry and skill the canoes were completed, and stored with the
necessary provisions; through an ingenious stratagem, the French escaped
in safety, while the savages slept soundly after one of their solemn
feasts. In fifteen days the fugitives arrived at Montreal, where they
found alarm on every countenance. The Iroquois swarmed over the island,
and committed great disorders, although still professing a treacherous
peace. The savages soon, however, threw off the mask, and broke into
open war.

On the 11th of July, 1658, the Viscompte d'Argenson landed at Quebec as
governor. The next morning the cry "to arms" echoed through the town.
The Iroquois had made a sudden onslaught upon some Algonquins under the
very guns of the fortress, and massacred them without mercy. Two hundred
men were instantly dispatched to avenge this insult, but they could not
overtake the wily marauders. In the same year, however, a party of the
Agniers met with a severe check in a treacherous attempt to surprise
Three Rivers. The lesson was not lost, and the colony for some time
enjoyed a much-needed repose. The missionaries seized this interval of
tranquillity to recommence their sacred labors: they penetrated into
many remote districts where Europeans had never before reached, and
discovered several routes to the dreary shores of Hudson's Bay. In the
year 1659, the exemplary François de Laval, abbé de Montigny, arrived at
Quebec to preside over the Canadian Church as the first American

The temporal affairs of the colony were falling into a lamentable
condition; no supplies arrived from France, and the local production was
far from sufficient. Terror of the Indians kept the settlers almost
blockaded in the forts, and cultivation was necessarily neglected. It
was proposed by many that all the settlements should be abandoned, and
that they should again seek the peaceful shores of their native country.
Many individuals were massacred by the savages, and two armed parties,
one of thirty and the other of twenty-six men, were totally destroyed.
But some of the Indians, too, began to weary of this murderous war, and
to long again for Christian instruction and peaceful commerce. The new
governor was at first little inclined to negotiate with his fierce and
capricious enemies; but, influenced by the miserable state of the
colony, which even a brief truce might improve, he at length agreed to
an exchange of prisoners and a peace.

In 1662 the King of France was at last induced to hearken to the prayers
of his Canadian subjects. M. de Monts[379] was sent out to inquire into
the condition of the country, and 400 troops added to the strength of
the garrison. But these encouraging circumstances were more than
neutralized on account of the permission then granted by the new
governor, Baron d'Avaugour, for the sale of ardent spirits.[380] The
disorder soon rose to a lamentable height, and the clergy in vain
opposed their utmost influence to its pernicious progress. At length the
worthy bishop hastened to France, and represented to the king the
dreadful evil that afflicted the colony. His remonstrances were
effectual; he succeeded in obtaining such powers as he deemed necessary
to stop the ruinous commerce.

The year 1663 was rendered memorable by a tremendous earthquake, spoken
of in a preceding chapter. In the same year the Associated Company
remitted to the crown all their rights over New France, which the king
again transferred to the West India Company.[381] Courts of law were
for the first time established, and many families of valuable settlers
found their way to the colony. Up to this period extreme simplicity and
honesty seems to have prevailed in the little community, and it was not
till then that a Council of State was appointed by the crown to
co-operate with the governor in the conduct of affairs.[382] The king
sent out the Sieur Gaudais to inquire into the state of his
newly-acquired dependency, and to investigate certain complaints
preferred against the Baron d'Avaugour, who had himself prayed to be
recalled. The sieur performed his invidious task to the satisfaction of
all parties: he made valuable reports as to the general character of the
colonial clergy, of the advantages and disadvantages of the local
administration of government, and imputed no fault to the Baron
d'Avaugour, but a somewhat too rigid and stern adherence to the letter
of the law, and the severity of justice. The baron then joyfully
returned to France, but soon afterward fell in the defense of the fort
of Serin against the Turks, while, with the permission of the French
king, serving the emperor.

M. de Mésy succeeded as governor, upon the recommendation of the Bishop
of Canada, whose complaints on the subject of the sale of spirituous
liquors had been the principal cause of the Baron d'Avaugour's recall.
The new appointment proved far from satisfactory to those by whose
influence it was made. M. de Mésy at once raised up a host of enemies by
his haughty and despotic bearing. He thwarted the Jesuits to the utmost
extent of his power; the council supported them, alleging that their
influence over the native race was essential to the well-being of the
colony. Various representations of these matters were made to the court
of France, and the final result was, that the governor was recalled.

Alexandre de Prouville, marquis de Tracy, was next appointed viceroy in
America by the king, with ample powers to establish, destroy, or alter
the institutions of the Canadian colony. Daniel de Remi, seigneur de
Courcelles, the new governor, and M. Talon, the intendant, were
conjoined with the viceroy in a commission to examine into the charges
against M. de Mésy. (1665.) M. de Tracy was the first to arrive at
Quebec; he bore with him the welcome re-enforcement of some companies of
the veteran regiment of Carignan-Salières.[383] He sent a portion of
this force at once against the Iroquois, accompanied by the allied
savages. The country was speedily cleared of every enemy, and the
harvest gathered in security. The remaining part of the regiment arrived
soon after, with the viceroy's colleagues; a large number of families,
artisans, and laborers; the first horses that had ever been sent to New
France; cattle, sheep; and, in short, a far more complete colony than
that which they came to aid.

Being now established in security, and confident in strength, the
viceroy led a sufficient force to the mouth of Richelieu River, where he
erected three forts[384] to overawe the turbulent Iroquois.[385] These
works were rapidly and skillfully executed, and for a time answered
their purpose; but the wily savages soon perceived that there were other
routes by which they could enter the settlements. In the mean time M.
Talon remained at Quebec, collecting much valuable information
concerning the country and its native inhabitants. He was spared,
however, the task of inquiring into the conduct of M. de Mésy, for that
gentleman died before the news of his recall reached Canada.

Toward the end of December, 1665, three tribes of the Iroquois nation
dispatched envoys to the viceroy at Quebec with proposals for peace and
for an exchange of prisoners. The terms were readily complied with. M.
de Tracy received the Indians with politic kindness and attention, and
sent them back with valuable presents. But the formidable tribes of the
Agniers and Onneyouths still kept sullenly apart from the French
alliance; it was, therefore, determined to give them a severe lesson for
their former insolence and treachery, and make them feel the supremacy
of France. M. de Courcelles and M. de Sorel were sent with two corps to
humble the haughty savages. The hostile Indians, alarmed at the
preparations for their destruction, now sent deputies to Quebec to avert
the threatening storm, although some of their war parties still infested
the settlements, and had lately put to death three French officers,
among them M. de Chasy, the viceroy's nephew. One of the Indian deputies
boasted at M. de Tracy's table that he had slain the French officers
with his own hands. He was immediately seized and strangled, and the
negotiations broken off.

The two French expeditions found the hostile country altogether
deserted, and returned without effecting any thing, having suffered
great fatigue and hardship. M. de Tracy then took the field in person,
at the head of 1200 French and 600 friendly Indians, with two pieces of
cannon. As he was setting out on the march, chiefs again came from the
Agniers and Onneyouths to pray for peace; but he would hear of no
accommodation, and even imprisoned the deputies. The French army marched
on the 14th of September, 1666; provisions soon failed in the solitary
desert through which they had to pass; in their greatest necessity,
however, they entered a wood abounding in chestnut-trees, whose fruit
supplied them with sustenance till they gained the first village of the
enemy. The warriors had abandoned the old men, women, and children, and
ample stores of food, and retired through the forest. The French found
the Indian cabans larger and better than any they had seen elsewhere,
and in ingeniously contrived magazines, sunk under the ground,
sufficient grain was discovered to supply the whole colony for two
years. The invaders burned and utterly destroyed all the villages, and
carried away, as captives, all the inhabitants that remained, but they
could not succeed in overtaking the warriors to force them to action.
They then retraced their steps, strengthening the settlements on the
River St. Lawrence as they passed. When M. de Tracy reached Quebec, he
caused some of the prisoners to be put to death as a warning, and
dismissed the remainder. Having established the authority of the West
India Company instead of that of "The Hundred Associates," he returned
to France the following spring.

The humiliation of the Iroquois restored profound peace to New France.
Then the wisdom and energy of M. Talon were directed to the development
of the resources of the country. Scientific men were sent to examine the
mineral resources of several districts where promising indications had
been observed. The clearing of land proceeded rapidly, and invariably
discovered a rich and productive soil. The population increased in
numbers, and enjoyed abundant plenty: all were in a condition to live in
comfort. According to the perhaps partial authority of the Jesuit
missionaries, the progress in morality and attention to religious
observances kept pace with the temporal prosperity of this happy colony.

Although M. de Courcelles showed little activity in conducting the
internal government of the colony, which was principally directed by M.
Talon, he was highly energetic and vigorous in his relations with the
Indians. Having learned that the Iroquois were intriguing with the
Ottawas to direct their fur trade to the English colonies, thus probably
to ruin the commerce of New France, he resolved to visit the Iroquois,
and impress them with an idea of his power. For this purpose he took the
route of the deep and rapid St. Lawrence, making his way in bateaux for
130 miles above Montreal. His health, however, suffered so much in this
difficult expedition that he was obliged to demand his recall.

On his return to Quebec he found that several atrocious murders and
robberies had been committed upon Iroquois and Mahingan Indians by
Frenchmen, which filled the savages with indignation, and roused them
to a fury of revenge. They attacked and burned a house in open day, and
a woman perished in the flames. Numbers of the two injured nations and
their savage allies hovered round Montreal, awaiting an opportunity for
vengeance. M. de Courcelles, with his wonted vigor in emergencies,
hastened to the threatened settlement, and called upon the Indian chiefs
to hold parley. They assembled, and hearkened with attention while he
enumerated the advantages that both parties derived from the existing
peace. He then caused those among the murderers who had been convicted
of the crime to be led out and executed on the spot. The Indians were at
once appeased by this prompt administration of justice, and even
lamented over the malefactors' wretched fate; they were also fully
indemnified for the stolen property. The assembly then broke up with
mutual satisfaction.

But soon again, the repose of the country was threatened by the Iroquois
and Ottawas, who had begun to make incursions upon each other. M. de
Courcelles promptly interfered to quell this growing animosity,
declaring that he would punish with the greatest severity either party
that would not submit to reasonable conditions. He required them to send
deputies to state their wrongs, and the grounds of dispute, and took
upon himself to do justice to both parties. He was obeyed: the chiefs of
the contending tribes repaired to Quebec, and by the firmness and
judgment of the governor, the breach was healed, and peace secured.

At this time a scourge more terrible than even savage war visited the
red race of Canada. The small-pox first appeared among the northern
tribe of the Attikamegues, and swept them totally away: many of their
neighbors shared the same fate. Tadoussac, where 1200 Indians usually
assembled to barter their rich furs at the end of the hunting season,
was deserted. Three Rivers, once crowded with the friendly Algonquins,
was now never visited by a red man, and a few years after the frightful
plague first appeared, the settlement of Sillery, near Quebec, was
attacked; 1500 savages took the fatal contagion, and not one survived.
The Hurons, who had been always most intimately associated with the
French, suffered least among the native nations from the malady. In 1670
Father Chaumonat assembled the remnant of this once powerful tribe in
the neighborhood of Quebec, and established them in the village of
Lorette,[386] where a mixed race of their descendants remains to this

Even the presence of the dreadful infliction of the small-pox and the
fear of French power could not long restrain the savage impulse for war.
The most distant tribe of the Iroquois became engaged in a sanguinary
quarrel with a neighboring nation, and took a number of prisoners. The
governor immediately sent to warn these turbulent savages that if they
did not desist from war, and return their prisoners, he would destroy
their villages as he had those of the Agniers. This peremptory message
raised the indignation of the Iroquois, they at first proudly disclaimed
the right of the French to dictate to the free people of the forest, and
vowed that they would perish rather than bow down to the strangers'
will; but, finally, the wisdom of the old men prevailed in the council:
they knew that they were not prepared to meet the power of the
Europeans; it was therefore decided that they should send a portion of
their prisoners to the governor. He either believed, or pretended to
believe, that they had fully complied with his demands, deeming it
prudent not to drive the Indians to extremities.


[Footnote 374: Among the Ursulines who accompanied Madame de la Peltrie
to Quebec was Marie de l'Incarnation, "the Theresa of France," and Marie
de St. Joseph. The sanctity of these remarkable women and the miracles
they performed are the favorite theme of the Jesuit historians of
Canada. Several lives of the former have been published, one of them by
Charlevoix. A quarto volume of her letters was also published (à Paris,
chez Louis Billaine, 1681): they are highly extolled as "worthy of her
high reputation for sanctity, ability, and practical good sense in the
business of life." They record many historical facts which occurred
during the thirty-two years that she passed in Canada, where she arrived
in 1640. When the Ursulines and the "Filles Hospitalières" landed at
Quebec, they were received with enthusiasm. "It was held as a festival
day; all work was forbidden; and the shops were shut. The governor
received these heroines upon the shore at the head of the troops, who
were under arms, the guns firing a salute. After the first greeting he
led them to the church, accompanied by the acclamations of the people;
here the Te Deum was chanted."--Charlevoix.

"The venerable ash tree still lives beneath which Mary of the
Incarnation, so famed for chastened piety, genius, and good judgment,
toiled, though in vain, for the culture of Huron children."--Bancroft's
_History of the United States_. vol. iii., p. 127.]

[Footnote 375: "Cette ville a été nominée Ville Marie par ses
fondateurs, mais ce nom n'a pu passer dans l'usage ordinaire; il n'a
lieu que dans les actes publics, et parmi les seigneurs, qui en sont
fort jaloux."--Charlevoix. When the foundations of the city of Montreal
were first laid, the name given to it was Ville Marie. Bouchette, vol.
i., p. 215; La Hontan, vol. xiii., p. 266.

Charlevoix gives the following account of the formation and progress of
the remarkable settlement at Montreal: "Quelques personnes puissantes,
et plus recommandable encore par leur piété et par leur zèle pour la
religion, formèrent donc une société, qui se proposa de faire en grand à
Montréal, ce qu'on avoit fait en petit à Sillery. Il devoit y avoir dans
cette isle une bourgade Françoise, bien fortifiée, et à l'abri de toute
insulte. Les pauvres y devoient être reçus, et mis en état de subsister
de leur travail. On projetta de faire occuper tout le reste de l'isle
par des sauvages, de quelque nation qu'ils fussent, pourvû qu'ils
fissent profession du Christianisme, ou qu'ils voulussent se faire
instuire de nos mystères, et l'on étoit d'autant plus persuadé qu'ils y
viendraient en grand nombre qu' outre un asile assuré contre les
poursuites de leurs ennemis, ils pouvoient se promettre des secours
toujours prompts dans leurs maladies, et contre la disette. On se
proposoit même de les policer avec le tems, et de les accoûtumer à ne
plus vivre que du travail de leurs mains. Le nombre de ceux qui
entroient dans cette association fut de trente-cinq; des cette année
1640, en vertu de la concession que le roi lui fit de l'isle, elle en
fit prendre possession à la fin d'une messe solennelle, qui fut célébrée
sous une tente. Le quinzième d'Octobre l'année suivante, M. de
Maisonneuve fut déclaré gouverneur de l'isle. Le dix-septième de May
suivant, le lieu destiné à l'habitation Françoise fut béni par le
Supérieur des Jésuites, qui y célébra les saints mystères, dédia à la
mère de Dieu une petite chapelle, qu'on avoit bâtie, et il y laissa le
St. Sacrement. Cette cérémonie avoit été précédé d'une autre, trois mois
auparavant, c'est à dire vers la fin de Février: tous les Associés
s'etant rendus un Jeudi matin à Nôtre Dame de Paris, ceux qui étoient
prêtres, y dirent la messe, les autres communièrent à l'autel de la
Vierge et tous supplièrent la reine des anges de prendre l'isle de
Montréal sous sa protection. Enfin le quinze d'Août, la fête de
l'Assomption de la mère de Dieu fut solemnisée dans cette isle avec un
concours extraordinaire de François et de sauvages. On ne négligea rien
dans cette occasion pour intéresser le ciel en faveur d'un établissement
si utile, et pour donner aux infidèles une haute idée de la religion
Chrétienne."--Charlevoix, tom. i., p. 345.

In the year 1644 Charlevoix says, "L'isle de Montréal se peuploit
insensiblement, et la piété de ces nouveaux colons disposoit peu à peu
les sauvages qui les approchoient à se soûmettre au jong de la foi." In
1657, however, it was considered that "les premiers possesseurs de
l'isle n'avoient pas poussé l'établissement autant qu'on avoit d'abord
espéré." and it was therefore ceded to the Seminary of St. Sulpice in
Paris. From that time the establishment made a rapid progress, M. de
Maisonneuve still continuing its governor, after it had changed masters.
He was a man of ability and piety: under his auspices the order of
"Filles de la Congrégation" was established at Montreal by Margaret
Bourgeois, who had accompanied the first settlers on the island from
France. For the details of this admirable institution see Charlevoix,
tom. ii., p. 94. He speaks of it with justice as one of the brightest
ornaments of New France.

"Jusqu' en l'année 1692, la justice particulière de Montréal appartenoit
à Messieurs du Séminaire de St. Sulpice, en qualité de seigneurs. Ils en
donnèrent alors leur démission au roi, à condition que l'exercice leur
en resteroit dans l'enclos de leur séminaire, et dans leur ferme de St.
Gabriel, avec la propriété perpétuelle et incommutable du Greffe de la
justice royale, qui seroit établie dans l'isle, et la nomination du
premier juge."--Charlevoix, tom. ii., p. 140.]

[Footnote 376: The kindness of the missionaries has been one of the
causes that has perpetuated a kindly feeling toward the French. Among
the American Indians, "a person, even in times of hostility, speaking
French will find security from the attachment of the people to every
thing that is French."--Imlay, p. 8.

"To do justice to truth, the French missionaries in general have
invariably distinguished themselves every where by an exemplary life,
befitting their profession. Their religious sincerity, their apostolic
charity, their insinuating kindness, their heroic patience, their
remoteness from austerity and fanaticism, fix in these countries
memorable epochs in the annals of Christianity; and while the memory of
a Del Vilde, a Vodilla, &c., will be held in everlasting execration by
all truly Christian hearts, that of a Daniel, a Brebeuf, &c., will never
lose any of that veneration which the history of discoveries and
missions has so justly conferred upon them. Hence that predilection
which the savages manifest for the French, a predilection which they
naturally find in the recesses of their souls, cherished by the
traditions which their fathers have left in favor of the first apostles
of Canada, then called New France."--Beltrami's _Travels_, 1823. The
authority of this passage, Chateaubriand observes, is the stronger, as
the writer is severe in his condemnation of the modern Jesuit.]

[Footnote 377: "Ce n'étoit pas la faute de leurs missionnaires, s'ils
s'endormaient de la sorte; mais ces religieux ne pouvant gagner sur
leurs néophytes qu'ils prissent pour leur sûreté les précautions que la
prudence exigeoit, redoublèrent leurs soins pour achever de les
sanctifier, et pour les préparer à tout ce qui pourroit arriver. Ils les
trouverent sur cet article d'une docilité parfaite; ils n'eurent aucune
peine à les faire entrér dans les sentimens les plus convenables à la
triste situation où ils se reduisaient eux-mêmes par une indolence, et
un aveuglement, qu'on ne pouvoit comprendre et qui n'a peut-être point
d'exemple dans l'histoire. Ce qui consoloit les pasteurs, c'est qu'ils
les voyoient dans l'occasion braver la mort avec un courage, qui les
animoit eux-mêmes à mourir en héros Chrétiens."--Charlevoix.]

[Footnote 378: The Abbé de Montigny was titular Bishop of Petræa, and
had received from the pope a brief as vicar apostolic. The Church of
Quebec was not erected into a bishop's see until 1670, when its bishop
was no longer called titular Bishop of Petræa, but Bishop of Quebec. "Ce
qui avoit fait traîner la cause si fort en longueur, c'est qu'il y eut
de grandes contestations sur la dépendance immédiate du Saint Siège,
dont le pape ne voulut point se relâcher. Cela n'empêche pourtant pas
que l'Evêché de Quebec ne soit en quelque façon uni au clergé de France,
en la manière de celui du Puy, lequel relève aussi immédiatement de
Rome."--Charlevoix, tom. ii., p. 189; _Petits Droits_, &c., tom. ii., p.

"When the bishopric of Quebec was erected, Louis XIV. endowed it with
the revenue of two abbacies, those of Benevent and L'Estrio. About
thirty years ago, the then bishop, finding it difficult, considering the
distance, to recover the revenues of them, by consent of Louis XV.,
resigned the same to the clergy of France, to be united to a particular
revenue of theirs, styled the economats, applied to the augmentation of
small livings, in consideration of which, the bishop of this see has
ever since received yearly 8000 livres out of the said revenues. A few
years before the late bishop's death, the clergy of France granted him,
for _his_ life only, a further pension of 2000 livres; the bishop had no
estate whatever, except his palace at Quebec, destroyed by our
artillery, a garden, and the ground-rent of two or three houses
adjoining it, and built on some part of the lands."--Governor Murray's
_Report on the Ancient Government and Actual State of the Province of
Quebec in_ 1762.]

[Footnote 379: Charlevoix, tom. ii., p. 120.]

[Footnote 380: "Jusques-là, les gouverneurs généraux avoient assez tenue
la main à faire exécuter les ordres qu'ils avoient eux-mêmes donnés, de
ne point vendre d'eau de vie aux sauvages; et le baron d'Avaugour avoit
décerné des peines très sévères contre ceux qui contreviendroient à ses
ordonnances sur ce point capital. Il arriva qu'une femme de Quebec fut
surprise en y contrevenant, et, sur le champ, conduite en prison. Le P.
Lallemant, à la prière de ses amis, crut pouvoir sans conséquence
intercéder pour elle. Il alla trouver le général, qui le reçut très mal,
et qui sans faire reflexion qu'il n'y a point d'inconséquence dans les
ministres d'un Dieu qui a donné sa vie pour détruire le pêché et sauver
le pécheur, à agir avec zèle pour réprimer le vice, et à demander grace
pour le criminel, lui répondit brusquement, que puisque la traité de
l'eau de vie n'étoit pas une faute punissable pour cette femme, elle ne
le seroit désormais pour personne.... il ne consulta que sa mauvaise
humeur et sa droiture mal entendue; et ce qu'il y eut de pis, c'est
qu'il se fit un point d'honneur de ne point retracter l'indiscrète
parole qui lui étoit echappée. Le peuple en fut bientôt instruit et le
desordre devint extrème."--Charlevoix. tom. ii., p. 121.]

[Footnote 381: Petit, vol. i., p. 24. _Colony Records._ There are no
books of record in the secretary's office before this period. The old
records were either carried to France, or destroyed at the fire, when
the intendant's palace was burned down in 1725.

"The company, 'des Cents Associés,' formed in 1628, though one of the
most powerful, according to Charlevoix, that had ever existed, with
respect to the number, the rank, and the accorded privileges of its
members, had allowed the colony to fall into a deplorable state of
weakness. In 1662, when it relinquished its rights to Louis XIV., the
original number of 100 had diminished to 45."--Charlevoix, ii., p. 149.

The East India Company was erected by the great Colbert in 1664. This
company, having fallen into decay, was united with the West Indian
Company, which was founded by law in 1718, and survived the ruin of its

[Footnote 382: "Jusques-là il n'y avoit point eu proprement de cour de
justice en Canada; les gouverneurs généraux jugeant les affaires d'une
maniêre assez souveraine; on ne s'avisoit point d'appeller de leurs
sentences; mais ils ne rendoient ordinairement des arrêts, qu'apres
avoir inutilement tentés les voies de l'arbitrage, et l'on convient que
leurs décisions étoient toujours, dictées par le bon sens, et selon les
regles de la loi naturelle, qui est au-dessus de toutes les autres.
D'ailleurs les Créoles du Canada, quoique de race Normande, pour la
plupart n'avoient seulement l'esprit processif, et aimoient mieux pour
l'ordinaire céder quelque chose de leur bon droit, que de perdre le tems
à plaider. Il sembloit même que tous les biens fussent communes dans
cette colonie, du moins on fut assez long tems sans rien fermeé sous la
clef, et il étoit inoui qu'on s'en abusât. Il est bien étrange et bien
humiliant pour l'homme que les précautions qu'un prince sage prit pour
éviter la chicane et faire regner la justice, aient presque été l'époque
de la naissance de l'une, et de l'affoiblissement de l'autre.... La
justice est rendue selon les ordonnances du royaume et la coutume de
Paris. Au mois de Juin, 1679, le roi autorisa par un édit quelques
réglemens du conseil de Quebec, et c'est ce qu'on appellé dans le pays
la réduction du Code ... par un autre édit en 1685 le conseil fut
autorisé à juger les causes criminelles au nombre de cinq juges ...
c'est sur le modèle du conseil supérieur à Quebec, qu'on a depuis établi
ceux de la Martinique, de St. Domingue, et de Louisiane. Tous ses
conseils sont d'epée."--Charlevoix, vol. ii., p. 140.]

[Footnote 383: "The regiment de Carignan-Salières was just arrived from
Hungary, where it had distinguished itself greatly in the war against
the Turks."--Charlevoix, tom. ii., p. 150.]

[Footnote 384: "M. de Sorel, a captain in the Regiment De Carignan, was
employed on the erection of the first fort, on the same site as the fort
De Richelieu, built by M. de Montmagny, now quite in ruins. De Sorel
gave his own name to the fort, and in time the river Richelieu, or
Iroquois, acquired it also.

"The second fort was called St. Louis; but, as M. de Chambly, captain in
the same regiment, had superintended the erection, and afterward
acquired the land on which it was situated, the whole district, and the
stone fort, which has been erected since upon the ruins of the former
one, have acquired and retained the name of Chambly. This was a very
important fortress, as it protected the colony on the side of New York,
and the lower Iroquois.

"The third fort was built under the direction of M. de Salières, the
colonel of the regiment De Carignan. He named it St. Theresa, because it
was finished on that saint's day."--Charlevoix, tom. ii., p. 152.]

[Footnote 385: "Every omen was now favorable, except the conquest of New
Netherlands (New York) by the English in 1664. That conquest eventually
made the Five Nations (Iroquois) a dépendance on the English nation; and
if for twenty-five years England and France sued for their friendship
with unequal success, yet afterward, in the grand division of parties
throughout the world, the Bourbons found in them implacable
opponents."--Bancroft's _History of the United States_, vol. ii., p.

[Footnote 386: "La chapelle à Lorette est bâtie sur le modèle et avec
toutes les dimensions de la Santa Case d'Italie, d'où l'on a envoyé à
nos néophytes une image de la vierge, semblable à celle, que l'on voit
dans ce célébre sanctuaire. On ne pouvoit guère choisir pour placer
cette mission, un lieu plus sauvage."--Charlevoix.]


Taking advantage of the profound peace which now blessed New
France,[387] M. Talon, the intendant, dispatched an experienced
traveler, named Nicholas Perrot, to the distant northern and western
tribes, for the purpose of inducing them to fix a meeting at some
convenient place with a view of discussing the rights of the French
crown. This bold adventurer penetrated among the nations dwelling by the
great lakes, and with admirable address induced them all to send
deputies to the Falls of St. Mary, where the waters of Lake Superior
pour into Lake Huron. The Sieur de St. Lusson met the assembled Indian
chiefs at this place in May, 1671; he persuaded them to acknowledge the
sovereignty of his king, and erected a cross bearing the arms of France.

M. de Courcelles was succeeded by the able and chivalrous Louis de
Buade, comte de Frontenac. The new governor was a soldier of high rank,
and a trusty follower of the great Henry of Navarre; his many high
qualities were, however, obscured by a capricious and despotic temper.
His plans for the advancement of the colony were bold and judicious, his
representations to the government of France fearless and effectual, his
personal conduct and piety unimpeachable, but he exhibited a bitterness
and asperity to those who did not enter into his views little suited to
the better points of his character, and it is said that ambition and the
love of authority at times overcame his zeal for the public good.[388]

M. Talon, the intendant, was at this time recalled by his own wish, but
before he departed from the scenes of his useful labors he planned a
scheme of exploration more extensive than any that had yet been
accomplished in New France. From the rumors and traditions among the
savages of the far West, with which the meeting at St. Mary's had made
the French acquainted, it was believed that to the southwest of New
France there flowed a vast river, called by the natives Mechasèpè, whose
course was neither toward the great lakes to the north, nor the Atlantic
to the east. It was therefore surmised that this unknown flood must pour
its waters either into the Gulf of Mexico or the Pacific Ocean. The wise
intendant was impressed with the importance of possessing a channel of
navigation to the waters of the south and west, and before his departure
from America made arrangements to have the course of the mysterious
stream[389] explored. He intrusted the arduous duty to Father Marquette,
a pious priest, who was experienced in Indian travel, and an adventurous
and able merchant of Quebec, named Jolyet. (1673.) The Comte de
Frontenac gave hearty aid to this expedition, and in the mean time he
himself extended the line of French settlement to the shores of Lake
Ontario,[390] built there the fort that still bears his name, and opened
communication with the numerous tribes westward of the Allegany

The exploring party, led by Marquette[391] and Jolyet, consisted of
only six men, in two little bark canoes: at the very outset the Indians
of the lakes told them that great and terrible dangers would beset their
path, and recounted strange tales of supernatural difficulties and
perils for those who had ventured to explore the mysterious regions of
the West. Hearkening carefully to whatever useful information the
natives could bestow, but despising their timid warnings, these
adventurous men hastened on over the great lakes to the northwestern
extremity of the deep and stormy Michigan, now called Green Bay.
Numerous Indian tribes wandered over the surrounding country; among
others, the Miamis, the most civilized and intelligent of the native
race that they had yet seen. Two hunters of this nation undertook to
guide the expedition to one of the tributaries of the great river of
which they were in search. The French were struck with wonder at the
vast prairies that lay around their route on every side, monotonous, and
apparently boundless as the ocean.

The Fox River was the stream to which the Miamis first led them.
Although it was broad at its entrance into the lake the upper portion
was divided by marshes into a labyrinth of narrow channels; as they
passed up the river, the wild oats grew so thickly in the water that the
adventurers appeared to row through fields of corn. After a portage of a
mile and a half, they launched their canoes in the Wisconsin River, a
tributary of the Mississippi, and the guides left them to find their way
into the unknown solitudes of the West. Their voyage down the tributary
was easy and prosperous, and at length, to their great joy, they reached
the magnificent stream of the Mississippi. The banks were rich and
beautiful, the trees the loftiest they had yet seen, and wild bulls and
other animals roamed in vast herds over the flowery meadows.[393]

For more than 200 miles Marquette and his companions continued their
course through verdant and majestic solitudes, where no sign of human
life appeared. At length the foot-prints of men rejoiced their sight,
and, by following up the track, they arrived at a cluster of inhabited
villages, where they were kindly and hospitably received. Their hosts
called themselves Illinois, which means "men" in the native tongue, and
is designed to express their supposed superiority over their neighbors.
Marquette considered them the most civilized of the native American

Neither fear for the future nor the enjoyment of present comfort could
damp the ardor of the French adventurers; they soon again launched their
little canoes on the Father of Waters, and followed the course of the
stream. They passed a number of bold rocks that rose straight up from
the water's edge; on one of these, strange monsters were curiously
painted in brilliant colors. Soon after they came to the place where the
great Missouri pours its turbid and noisy flood into the Mississippi;
and next they reached a lofty range of cliffs, that stretched nearly
across from bank to bank, breasting the mighty stream. With great
difficulty and danger they guided their little canoes through these
turbulent waters. They passed the entrance of the Ohio,[394] and were
again astonished at the vast size of the tributaries which fed the flood
of the mysterious river. The inhabitants of the villages on the banks
accepted the calumet of peace, and held friendly intercourse with the
adventurers; and although, after passing the mouth of the Arkansas
River, a proposition was made in the council of one tribe to slay and
rob them, the chief indignantly overruled the cruel suggestion, and
presented them with the sacred pipe.

At the village where they were threatened with this great danger they
were inaccurately informed that the sea was only distant five days'
voyage. From this the travelers concluded that the waters of the
Mississippi poured into the Gulf of Mexico, and not, as they had fondly
hoped, into the Pacific Ocean. Fearing, therefore, that by venturing
further they might fall into the hands of the Spaniards, and lose all
the fruits of their toils and dangers, they determined to re-ascend the
stream and return to Canada. After a long and dreary voyage, they
reached Chicago, on Lake Michigan, where the adventurers separated.
Father Marquette remained among the friendly Miamis, and Jolyet hastened
to Quebec to announce their discoveries. Unfortunately, their
enlightened patron, M. Talon, had already departed for France.

There chanced, however, to be at Quebec at that time a young Frenchman,
of some birth and fortune, named Robert Cavalier, sieur de la Salle,
ambitious, brave, and energetic. He had emigrated to America with a hope
of gaining fame and wealth in the untrodden paths of a new world. The
first project that occupied his active mind was the discovery of a route
to China[395] and Japan, by the unexplored regions of the west of
Canada. The information brought by Jolyet to Quebec excited his sanguine
expectations. Impressed with the strange idea that the Missouri would
lead to the Northern Ocean, he determined to explore its course, and
having gained the sanction of the governor, sailed for France to seek
the means of fitting out an expedition. In this he succeeded by the
favor of the Prince of Conti. The Chevalier de Tonti, a brave officer,
who had lost an arm in the Sicilian wars, was associated with him in the

On the 14th of July, 1678, La Salle and Tonti embarked at Rochelle with
thirty men, and in two months arrived at Quebec. They took Father
Hennepin with them, and hastened on to the great lakes,[396] where they
spent two years in raising forts and building vessels of forty or fifty
tons burden, and carrying on the fur trade with the natives. The party
then pushed forward to the extremity of Michigan. Their friendly
relations with the Indians were here interrupted by a party of the
Outagamis having robbed them of a coat. The French held a council to
devise means of deterring the savages from such depredations, and it was
somewhat hastily determined to demand restitution of the coat under the
threat of putting the offending chief to death. The Outagamis, having
divided the stolen garment into a number of small pieces for general
distribution, found it impossible to comply with this requisition, and
thinking that no resource remained, presented themselves to the French
in battle array. However, through the wise mediation of Father Hennepin,
the quarrel was arranged, and a good understanding restored.

La Salle now set out with a party of forty-four men and three Recollets,
to pursue his cherished object of exploring the course of the
Mississippi. He descended the stream of the Illinois, and was charmed
with the beauty and fertility of the banks: large villages rose on each
side; the first, containing 500 wooden huts, they found deserted, but in
descending the river they suddenly perceived that two large bodies of
Indians were assembled on opposite banks, in order of battle. After a
parley, however, the Indians presented the calumet of peace, and
entertained the strangers at a great feast.

The discontents among his own followers proved far more dangerous to La
Salle than the caprice or hostility of the savages. They murmured at
being led into unknown regions, among barbarous tribes, to gratify the
ambition of an adventurer, and determined to destroy him and return to
France. They were base enough to tell the natives that La Salle was a
spy of the Iroquois, their ancient enemies, and it required all his
genius and courage to remove this idea from the minds of the ignorant
savages. Failing in this scheme, they endeavored to poison him and all
his faithful adherents at a Christmas dinner; by the use of timely
remedies, however, the intended victims recovered, and the villains,
having fled, were in vain pursued over the trackless deserts.

La Salle was obliged to return to the forts for aid, on account of the
desertion of so many of his followers; but he sent Father Hennepin, with
Dacan and three other Frenchmen, to explore the sources of the
Mississippi, and left Tonti in the command of a small fort, erected on
the Illinois, which he, however, was soon obliged to desert, in
consequence of the hostility of the Iroquois. La Salle collected twenty
men, with the necessary arms and provisions, and, unshaken by
accumulated disasters, determined at once to make his way to the Gulf of
Mexico down the course of the Mississippi. He passed the entrance of the
swollen and muddy Missouri, and the beautiful Ohio, and, still
descending, traversed countries where dwelt the numerous and friendly
Chickasaw and Arkansaw Indians. Next he came to the Taencas, a people
far advanced beyond their savage neighbors in civilization, and obeying
an absolute prince. Farther on, the Natchez received him with
hospitality; but the Quinipissas, who inhabited the shores more to the
south, assailed him with showers of arrows. He wisely pursued his
important journey without seeking to avenge the insult. Tangibao, still
lower down the stream, had just been desolated by one of the terrible
irruptions of savage war: the bodies of the dead lay piled in heaps
among the ruins of their former habitations. For leagues beyond, the
channel began to widen, and at length became so vast that one shore was
no longer visible from the other. The water was now brackish, and
beautiful sea-shells were seen strewn along the shore. They had reached
the mouth of the Mississippi, the Father of Rivers.

La Salle celebrated the successful end of his adventurous voyage with
great rejoicings. Te Deum was sung, a cross was suspended from the top
of a lofty tree, and a shield, bearing the arms of France, was erected
close at hand. They attempted to determine the latitude by an
observation of the sun, but the result was altogether erroneous.

The country immediately around the outlet of this vast stream was
desolate and uninteresting. Far as the eye could teach, swampy flats and
inundated morasses filled the dreary prospect. Under the ardent rays of
the tropical sun, noisome vapors exhaled from the rank soil and
sluggish waters, poisoning the breezes from the southern seas, and
corrupting them into the breath of pestilence. Masses of floating trees,
whose large branches were scathed by months of alternate immersion and
exposure, during hundreds of leagues of travel, choked up many of the
numerous outlets of the river, and, cemented together by the alluvial
deposits of the muddy stream, gradually became fixed and solid, throwing
up a rank vegetation.[397] Above this dreary delta, however, the country
was rich and beautiful, and graceful undulations succeeded to the
monotonous level of the lower banks.

After a brief repose, La Salle proceeded to re-ascend the river toward
Canada, eager to carry the important tidings of his success to France.
His journey was beset with difficulties and dangers. The course of the
stream, though not rapid, perpetually impeded his progress. Provisions
began to fail, and dire necessity drove him to perilous measures for
obtaining supplies. Having met with four women of the hostile tribe of
the Quinipissas, he treated them with great kindness, loading them with
such gifts as might most win their favor. The chief of the savages then
came forward and invited the French to his village, offering them the
much-needed refreshments which they sought. But a cruel treachery lurked
under this friendly seeming, and the adventurers were only saved from
destruction by the careful vigilance of their leader. At daybreak the
following morning, the Indians made a sudden attack upon their guests;
the French, however, being thoroughly on the alert, repulsed the
assailants, and slew several of the bravest warriors. Infuriated by the
treachery of the savages, the victors followed the customs of Indian
warfare, and scalped those of the enemy who fell into their power.

As they ascended the river they were again endangered by the secret
hostility of the Natchez,[398] from the effects of which a constant
front of preparation alone preserved them. After several months of
unceasing toil and watchfulness, with many strange and romantic
adventures, but no other serious obstruction, the hardy travelers at
length joyfully beheld the headland of Quebec.

Immediately after his arrival, La Salle hastened to France to announce
his great discovery,[399] and reap the distinction justly due to his
eminent merits. (1682.) He was received with every honor, and all his
plans and suggestions were approved by the court. Under his direction
and command, an expedition was fitted out, consisting of four vessels
and 280 men, for the purpose of forming a settlement at the mouth of the
Mississippi, and thence establishing a regular communication with
Canada, along the course of the Great River. At the same time, he
received the commission of governor over the whole of the vast country
extending between the lakes and the Gulf of Mexico. The little squadron
sailed from La Rochelle on the 24th of July, 1684, along with the West
India fleet, and having touched at St. Domingo and Cuba by the way,
arrived in safety on the coast of Florida.

La Salle was involved in great perplexity by ignorance of the longitude
of the river's mouth. Not having descended so far in his former
expedition as to be able to judge of its appearance from the sea, he
passed the main entrance of the Mississippi unawares, and proceeded 200
miles to the westward, where he found himself in a bay, since called St.
Bernard's. Attracted by the favorable appearance of the surrounding
country, La Salle here founded the fort which was to be the basis of his
future establishment. But difficulties and misfortunes crowded upon him;
the vessel containing his stores and utensils was sunk through the
negligence or treachery of her commander, and a great portion of the
cargo lost or seized by the Indians. The violent measures he adopted to
compel restitution of the plundered goods kindled a deep resentment in
the minds of this fierce and haughty tribe, the Clamcoets by name. They
made a sudden midnight attack upon the settlement, slew two of the
French, and wounded several, and whenever opportunity offered afterward,
repeated their assaults. The tropical climate, however, proved a far
deadlier foe than even the savage, and at length the spirit of the
colonists gave way under accumulated difficulties.

Meanwhile Tonti, who had descended the Mississippi to join La Salle,
sought him in vain at the mouth of the river, and along the coast for
twenty leagues at either side. Having found no trace or tidings of the
expedition, he relinquished the search in despair, and sailed upward
again to the Canadian Lakes.

La Salle bore up with noble courage and energy against the difficulties
that surrounded him. His subordinates thwarted him on every occasion,
and at length broke out into a violent mutiny, which he, however,
vigorously suppressed. But when he discovered that the settlement
founded and sustained by his unceasing labors was not, as he had fondly
supposed, at the mouth of the Great River, he experienced the bitterest
disappointment. The surrounding country, though fertile, offered no
brilliant prospect of sudden wealth or hopes of future commerce. He
determined, therefore, once again to explore the vast streams of the
Mississippi and Illinois, and to endeavor to gain a greater knowledge of
the interior of the continent. He took with him on this expedition his
nephew, a worthy but impetuous youth, named Moranger, and about twenty
men. This young man's haughty spirit excited a savage thirst of
vengeance in the minds of his uncle's lawless followers; they watched
their opportunity, and in a remote and dreary solitude in the depths of
the new continent, La Salle and Moranger were both slain by their
murderous hands. Thus sadly perished, in a nameless wilderness, one of
the most daring and gifted among those wonderful men to whom the
discovery of the New World had opened a field of glory. His temper was,
doubtless, at times, violent and overbearing,[400] but he was dearly
loved by his friends, respected by his dependents, and fondly revered by
those among the Indians who came within his influence. His greatest
difficulties arose from those who were placed under his command,
abandoned and ungovernable men, the very refuse of society, and amenable
to no laws, human or divine.

It has been already mentioned that La Salle had sent Dacan and Father
Hennepin to explore the Mississippi, on his first return from the
Illinois to Lake Michigan. They descended that great river almost to the
sea; but their followers, becoming alarmed at the idea of falling into
the hands of the Spaniards, compelled them to return without having
perfected their expedition. They re-ascended the stream, and passed the
mouths of the Illinois and Wisconsin, and even reached beyond those
magnificent falls to which the adventurous priest has given the name of
St. Anthony. Continual danger threatened these travelers, from the
caprice or hostility of the Indians; they were held for a long time in a
cruel captivity, forced to accompany their captors through the most
difficult countries, at a pace of almost incredible rapidity, till, with
their feet and limbs cut and bleeding, they were well-nigh incapable of
moving any further. After some time Hennepin was adopted by a chief as
his son, and treated with much kindness; when winter came on, however,
and a great scarcity of provisions arose, the Indians, being unable any
longer to support their captives, allowed them to depart. The father and
his companions used this liberty to continue their explorations down the
Mississippi. After many other perils and adventures, they at length met
the Sieur de Luth, who commanded a party sent in search of them, and
with further instructions to form a settlement on the Great River.
Hennepin at first turned back with the sieur, but found so many
obstacles and difficulties that he determined for the present to return
to Canada.

The disasters attending the expeditions of La Salle and Hennepin for
some time deterred others from venturing to explore the dangerous
regions of the West, and the government totally neglected to occupy the
splendid field which the adventure of those men had opened to French
enterprise. It was left to the love of gain or glory, or the religious
zeal of individuals, to continue the explorations of this savage but
magnificent country. The Baron la Hontan was one of the first and most
conspicuous of these dauntless travelers.[401] He had gone to Canada in
early life with a view of retrieving the broken fortunes of his ancient
family, and had obtained employment upon the lakes under the French
government. While thus occupied, he became intimately acquainted with
the life and customs of the savages, and, from his intercourse with
them, formed the idea of penetrating into the interior of their country,
where the white man's foot had never before trodden. His actual
discoveries were probably not very important, and his record of them is
confused and imperfect; but he was the first to learn the existence of
the Rocky Mountains, and of that vast ocean which separates the western
coast of North America from the continent of Asia.[402]


[Footnote 387: "On espéroit beaucoup de la Compagnie des Indes
Occidentales, mais elle ne prit guère plus à coeur les intérêts de la
Nouvelle France, que n'avoit fait la précédente, ainsi que M. Talon
avoit prévu. Cependant comme les secours que le Canada avait reçus les
dernières années, l'avoient mis sur un assez bon pied, il s'y conserva
quelque tems, et il n'est pas même retombé depuis dans l'état de
foiblesse et d'épuisement dont le roi venoit de le tirer."--Charlevoix,
tom. ii., p. 161.]

[Footnote 388: "Le peuple adoroit Frontenac à cause de sa bonté."--La
Potherie, tom. iv., p. 110; Charlevoix, tom ii., p. 246.]

[Footnote 389: The Mississippi.]

[Footnote 390: "Ce lac a porté quelque tems le nom de St. Louis, on lui
donna ensuite celui de Frontenac, aussi bien qu'au fort de Catarocoui
dont le Comte de Frontenac fut le fondateur, mais insensiblement le lac
a repris son ancien nom, qui est Huron ou Iroquois, et le fort celui du
lieu où il est bâti (1721)."--Charlevoix, tom. v., p. 287.]

[Footnote 391: "Le Père J. Marquette, natif de Laon en Picardie, a été
un des plus illustres missionnaires du la Nouvelle France; il en a
parcouru presque toutes les contrées, et il y a fait plusieurs
découvertes dont la dernière est celle du Micissipi. Deux ans après
cette découverte, comme il alloit à Michillimackinack, il entra le 18me
de May, 1675, dans la rivière dont il s'agit; il dressa son autel sur le
terrein bas, qu'on lassia à droite en y entrant, et il y dit la messe.
Il s'éloigna, ensuite un peu pour faire son action de graces, et pria
les hommes qui conduisoient son canot, de le laisser seul pendant une
demie heure. Ce tems passé, ils allèrent le chercher, et furent très
surpris de le trouver mort, ils se souvinrent néanmoins qu'en entrant
dans la rivière, il lui étoit échappé de dire qu'il finiroit la son
voyage. Aujourd'hui les sauvages n'appellent cette rivière autrement que
la rivière de la robe noire;[392] les François lui ont donné le nom du
Père Marquette, et ne manquent jamais de l'invoquer, quand ils se
trouvent en quelque danger sur le Lac Michigan. Plusieurs ont assuré
qu'ils se croyoient redevables à son intercession, d'avoir echappé à de
très grands perils."--Charlevoix, tom. vi., p. 21.]

[Footnote 392: "Les sauvages appellent ainsi les Jésuites. Ils nomment
les Prêtres, les Collets blancs, et les Recollets, les Robes grises."]

[Footnote 393: Relation de Marquette: Recueil de Thevenot, tom. i.]

[Footnote 394: The signification of the word Ohio is "Beautiful River."
According to Bancroft, it was called the Wabash in La Salle's time, and
long afterward.]

[Footnote 395: "La Chine is a fine village three French miles to the
southeast of Montreal, but on the same side, close to the River St.
Lawrence. Here is a church of stone, with a small steeple, and the whole
place has a very agreeable situation. Its name is said to have had the
following origin: As the unfortunate M. de Sales was here, who was
afterward murdered by his own countrymen further up the country, he was
very intent on discovering a shorter road to China by means of the River
St. Lawrence. He talked of nothing at that time but his now short way to
China; but, as his project of undertaking this journey in order to make
this discovery was stopped by an accident which happened to him here,
and he did not at that time come any nearer China, this place got its
name, as it were, by way of joke."--Kalm, in Pinkerton, vol. xiii., p.

[Footnote 396: See Appendix. No. LXIV. (see Vol II)]

[Footnote 397: "This is the site of New Orleans. New Orleans, holding,
from its position, the command of all the immense navigable
river-courses of interior America, is making the most rapid progress of
any American city, and will doubtless one day become the greatest in
that continent--perhaps even in the world. A formidable evil, however,
exists in the insalubrity of the air, arising from the extensive marshes
and inundated grounds which border the lower part of the Mississippi.
The terrible malady that bears the name of the yellow fever, makes its
first appearance in the early days of August, and continues till
October. During that era New Orleans appears like a deserted city; all
who possibly can, fly to the north or the upper country; most of the
shops are shut; and the silence of the streets is only interrupted by
the sound of the hearse passing through them. In one year two thousand
died of this fever. Since the morasses have been partially cleared, its
ravages have been less destructive; and, as this work is going on, the
city may hope, in time, to be almost free from this terrible
scourge."--Murray's _America_, vol. ii., p. 428.]

[Footnote 398: "Garcilasso de la Vega parle de cette nation comme d'un
peuple puissant, et il n'y a pas six ans qu'on y comptoit quatre mille
guerriers. Aujourd'hui les Natchez ne pourroient pas mettre sur pied
deux mille combattans (1714)."--Charlevoix, tom. vi., p. 177.]

[Footnote 399: "La Louisiane est le nom que M. de la Sale a donné au
pays qu'arrose le Mississippi audessous de la Rivière des Illinois et
qu'il a conservé jusqu'à present. C'étoit en l'honneur de Louis XIV.,
qui regnoit alors en France."--Charlevoix, tom. ii., p. 436.]

[Footnote 400: Charlevoix thus speaks of the selection of M. de la Salle
by M. de Seignelay: "Il n'est point de vertu qui ne soit mêlée de
quelque défaut: c'est le sort ordinaire de l'humanité. Ce qui met le
comble a notre humiliation, c'est que les plus grands défauts
accompagnent souvent les plus éminentes qualités, et que la jalousie que
celles-ci inspirent trouve presque toujours dans ceux-là un spécieux
prétexte pour couvrir ce que cette passion a de bas et d'injuste. C'est
à ceux qui sont établis pour gouverner les hommes à se faire jour pour
sortir de cette labyrinthe, à dégager le vrai des ténébres dont la
passion veut l'offusquer, et à connoître si bien ceux dont ils veulent
se servir, qu'en leur donnent lieu de faire usage de ce qu'ils ont de
bon, ils se précautionnent sur ce qu'ils ont de mauvais."--Charlevoix,
tom. ii., p. 2.]

[Footnote 401: _Mémoires de l'Amérique Septentrionale par M. le Baron de
la Hontan_: à Amsterdam, 1705. For the character of these memoirs, see
Charlevoix, tom. vi., p. 408. They are translated in Pinkerton, vol.

[Footnote 402: The North Pacific Ocean. The South Pacific Ocean had been
discovered by the Spaniard Balboa in 1513.]


An embittered disagreement between the governor general, Comte de
Frontenac, and the intendant, M. de Cheneau, M. Talon's successor,
rendered it necessary to recall both those officers from the colony. The
French court attributed the greater share of blame to the governor, but
the haughty and unbending disposition of the intendant was probably a
principal cause of those untoward disputes. M. le Févre de la Barre and
M. de Meules succeeded them in their respective offices, with special
recommendation from the king to cultivate friendly relations with each
other, and with M. de Blénac, the governor general of the French
American islands.

New France had for many years remained in a state of great confusion,
and had made but little progress in prosperity or population, and now
the prospects of a disastrous war darkened the future of the colonists.
Various causes had united to revive the hostility of the Iroquois, their
ancient and powerful foes. Since New York had fallen into English hands,
the savages found it more advantageous to carry their trade thither than
to barter their furs with the privileged company of France. The falling
off of commercial intercourse soon led to further alienation, which the
death of an Iroquois chief by the hands of an Illinois, in the territory
of the Ottawas, then allies of the white men, soon turned into open
hostility. The Comte de Frontenac had failed in his attempts to
negotiate with the savages; and on the arrival of his successor, an
invasion of the colony was hourly expected. M. de la Barre at once
perceived the dangerous state of affairs; he therefore summoned an
assembly of all the leading men in the country, ecclesiastical, civil,
and military, and demanded counsel from them in the emergency.

The assembly was of opinion that the Iroquois aimed at the monopoly of
all the trade of Canada, by the instigation of the English and Dutch of
New York, who were also supposed to incite them to enmity against the
French, and that, consequently, those nations should be held hostile. It
was also believed that the savages had only endeavored to gain time by
their negotiations, while they either destroyed the tribes friendly to
the colonists, or seduced them from their alliance. With this view they
had already assailed the Illinois, and it was therefore the duty of the
French to save that nation from this attack, whatever might be the cost
or danger of the enterprise. For that purpose the colony could only
furnish 1000 men; and to procure even this number, it was necessary that
the labors of husbandry should be suspended. Re-enforcements of troops
and a supply of laborers were therefore urgently required for the very
existence of the settlements; and an earnest appeal for such assistance
was forwarded to the king, as the result of the deliberations of the
assembly. This application was immediately answered by the dispatch of
200 soldiers to New France, and by a remonstrance addressed to the King
of Great Britain, who instructed Colonel Dongan, the English governor of
New York, to encourage more friendly relations with his French

While M. de la Barre pushed on his preparations for war against the
Iroquois, he still kept up the hope of treating with them for peace in
such a manner as not to forfeit the dignity of his position. In the mean
time, however, he received intimation that a formidable expedition of
1500 warriors had assembled, ostensibly to wage war with the Illinois,
but in reality for the destruction of the Miamis and Ottawas, both
allies of the French. The governor promptly dispatched an envoy, who
arrived at the village where the Iroquois had mustered on the evening of
the day appointed for the beginning of their campaign. The envoy was
received with dignity and kindness; and he succeeded in obtaining a
promise that the expedition should be deferred, and that they would send
deputies to Montreal to negotiate with the French chief. But the wily
savages had promised only to deceive; and in the month of May following,
the governor received intelligence that 700 of these fierce warriors
were on their march to attack his Miami and Ottawa allies, while
another force was prepared to assail the settlements of the French
themselves. He attributed these dangerous hostilities to the instigation
of the English.

The governor made urgent representations to the minister at home as to
the necessity of crushing two of the Iroquois tribes, the most hostile
and the most powerful. For this purpose, he demanded that a
re-enforcement of 400 men should be sent to him from France as soon as
possible, and that an order should be obtained from the Duke of York, to
whom New York then belonged, to prevent the English from interfering
with or thwarting the expedition.

The Iroquois found the free trade with the English and Dutch more
advantageous than that with the French, which was paralyzed by an
injudicious monopoly; but they were still unwilling to come to an open
rupture with their powerful neighbors. They therefore sent deputies to
Montreal to make great but vague professions of attachment and good
will. For many reasons, De la Barre placed but little confidence in
these addresses: their object was obviously to gain time, and to throw
the French off their guard. He, however, received the deputies with
great distinction, and sent them back enriched with presents. But a few
months after this, however, a small detachment of Frenchmen was assailed
by the Iroquois, and plundered of merchandise which they were bearing to
traffic with the Illinois.

After this flagrant outrage, nothing remained for M. de la Barre but
war. He had received intelligence that the Iroquois were making great
preparations for an onslaught upon the French settlements, and that they
had sent embassadors to the Indians of the south for the purpose of
insuring peace in that quarter, while they threw all their power into
the struggle with the hated pale faces. The governor promptly determined
to adopt the bolder but safer course of striking the first blow, and
making the cantons of his savage enemies the field of battle. As yet,
few and small were the aids he had received from France, and a
considerable time must elapse ere the further supplies he anticipated
could arrive: he was, therefore, unwillingly compelled to avail himself
of the assistance of his Indian allies. The native tribes dwelling
around the shores of Lake Michigan entertained a deep and ancient
jealousy of the powerful confederacy of the Iroquois or Five Nations,
who aspired to universal dominion over the Northern Continent; they,
therefore, held themselves equally interested with the French in the
destruction of those formidable warriors. M. de la Durantaye, who
commanded the fort on the far-distant shores of Lake Michigan, announced
to his Indian neighbors that his countrymen were about to march against
the Iroquois, and requested that all the native warriors friendly to the
white men should meet them in the middle of August at Niagara. He was
not, however, very successful in making levies, and with difficulty led
500 warriors to the place of meeting, where, to his dismay, he found
that the French had not arrived: his followers were not easily
reconciled to this disappointment.

In the mean time, M. de la Barre had, on the 9th of July, 1683, marched
from Quebec to Montreal, where he appointed the troops to assemble for
the expedition. No precautions to insure success were neglected. He
dispatched a message to the English governor of New York to invite him
to join in the attack, or, at least, to secure his neutrality. He also
sent belts and presents to three of the Iroquois tribes, to induce them
to refrain from joining in the quarrel of those among their confederates
who alone had injured him and his nation. He arrived at Montreal on the
21st, with 700 Canadians, 130 soldiers, and 200 Indians: his force was
organized in three divisions. After a brief stay he continued his march

The governor had not proceeded far when he received intelligence that
the other Iroquois tribes had obliged the Tsonnonthouans, his especial
enemies, to accept of their mediation with the French, and that they
demanded the Sieur le Moyne, in whom they placed much confidence, to
conduct the negotiation. At the same time, he learned that the tribe he
proposed to assail had put all their provisions into a place of
security, and were prepared for a protracted and harassing resistance.
His appeals both to the remaining Iroquois tribes and to the English had
also failed, for the former would assuredly make common cause against
him in case of his refusing their mediation, and the latter had actually
offered to aid his enemies with 400 horse, and a like force of infantry.
Influenced by these untoward circumstances, he dispatched M. le Moyne to
treat, and agreed to await the Iroquois deputies on the shores of Lake
Ontario. In the mean time, M. de la Barre and his army underwent great
privations from the scarcity and bad quality of their provisions; they
could with difficulty hold their ground till the arrival of the savages,
and such was their extremity that the name of the Bay of Famine was
given to the scene of their sufferings.

The savage deputies met the French chief with great dignity, and, well
aware of the advantage given them by the starvation and sickness of the
white men, carried their negotiations with a high hand. They guaranteed
that the Tsonnonthouans should make reparation, for the injuries
inflicted on the French, but at the same time insisted that the governor
and his army should retire the very next day. With this ignoble
stipulation M. de la Barre was fain to agree. On his return to Quebec,
he found, to his chagrin, that considerable re-enforcements had just
arrived from France, which would have enabled him to dictate instead of
submitting to dictation. The new detachment was commanded by MM.
Monterlier and Desnos, captains of marine, who were commissioned by the
king to proceed to the most advanced and important posts, and to act
independently of the governor's authority. They were further instructed
to capture as many of the Iroquois as possible, and to send them to
France to labor in the galleys. In this same year the Chevalier de
Callières, an officer of great merit, was sent from France to assume the
duties of governor of the Montreal district, as successor to M. Perrot,
who had embroiled himself with the members of the powerful Order of St.

In the year 1685, the Marquis de Dénonville arrived at Quebec as
governor general in succession to M. de la Barre, whose advanced age and
failing health unfitted him for the arduous duties of the office. The
new governor was selected by the king for his known valor and prudence;
a re-enforcement of troops was placed at his disposal, and it was
determined to spare no effort to establish the colony in security and
peace. Dénonville lost not a moment in proceeding to the advanced posts
on the lakes, and, at the same time, he devoted himself to a diligent
study of the affairs of Canada and the character of the Indians. His
keen perception promptly discovered the impossibility of the Iroquois
being reconciled and assimilated to the French, and he at once saw the
necessity of extirpating, or at least thoroughly humbling, these haughty
savages. But beyond the present dangers and difficulties of Indian
hostility, this clear-sighted politician discerned the far more
formidable evils that threatened the power of his country from the
advancing encroachments of the hardy traders and fearless adventurers of
the English colonies. He urged upon the king the advantage of building
and garrisoning a fort at Niagara to exclude the British from the
traffic of the lakes, and interrupt their communications with the
Iroquois, and also to check the desertion of the French, who usually
escaped by that route, and transferred the benefits of their experience
and knowledge of the country to the rival colonies. The Northwest
Company of merchants at Quebec earnestly desired this establishment, and
engaged to pay an annual rent of 30,000 livres to the crown for the
privilege of exclusive trade at the proposed station.

The suspicions of the Marquis de Dénonville as to English encroachments
were soon confirmed. He received a letter from the governor of New York,
dated 29th of May, 1686, demanding explanations of the preparations
which were being made against the Iroquois--the subjects of England--as
any attack upon them would be a breach of the peace then existing
between England and France. The British governor also expressed surprise
that the French should contemplate erecting a fort at Niagara, "because
it should be known in Canada that all that country was a dependency of
New York." M. de Dénonville, in reply, denied the pretensions of the
English to sovereignty in New France, and pointed out the impropriety of
hostile communications between inferiors, while the kings whom they
served remained on amicable terms. He rendered, however, some sort of
evasive explanation on the subject of his preparations against the

The following year the governor general received from the court the
notification of a most important agreement between England and France,
that, "notwithstanding any rupture between the mother countries, the
colonies on the American continent should remain at peace."
Unfortunately, however, the force of national prejudice, and the
clashing of mutual interests, rendered this wise and enlightened
provision totally fruitless.

In the summer of 1687, M. de Dénonville marched toward Lake Ontario with
a force of 2000 French and 600 Indians, having already received all the
supplies and re-enforcements which he had expected from France. His
first act of aggression was one that no casuistry can excuse, no
necessity justify--one alike dishonorable and impolitic. He employed two
missionaries, men of influence among the savages, to induce the
principal Iroquois chiefs to meet him at the fort of Cataracouy, under
various pretenses; he there treacherously seized the unsuspecting
savages, and instantly dispatched them to Quebec, with orders that they
should be forwarded to France to labor in the galleys. The missionaries
who had been instrumental in bringing the native chiefs into this
unworthy snare were altogether innocent of participation in the outrage,
never for a moment doubting the honorable intentions of their countrymen
toward the Indian deputies. One, who dwelt among the Onneyouths, was
immediately seized by the exasperated tribe, and condemned to expiate
the treachery of his nation, and his own supposed guilt, in the flames.
He was, however, saved at the last moment by the intervention of an
Indian matron, who adopted him as her son. The other--Lamberville by
name--was held in great esteem among the Onnontagués, to whose
instruction he had devoted himself. On the first accounts of the outrage
at Cataracouy, the ancients assembled and called the missionary before
them. They then declared their deep indignation at the wrong which they
had suffered; but, at the moment when their prisoner expected to feel
the terrible effects of their wrath, a chief arose, and with a noble
dignity addressed him:

"Thou art now our enemy--thou and thy race. We have held counsel, and
can not resolve to treat thee as an enemy. We know thy heart had no
share in this treason, though thou wert its tool. We are not unjust; we
will not punish thee, being innocent, and hating the crime as much as we
do ourselves. But depart from among us; there are some who might seek
thy blood; and when our young men sing the war-song, we may be no longer
able to protect thee." The magnanimous savages then furnished him with
guides, who were enjoined to convey him to a place of safety.

M. de Dénonville halted for some time at Cataracouy, and sent orders to
the commanders of the distant western posts to meet him on the 10th of
July at the River Des Sables, to the eastward of the country of the
Tsonnonthouans, against whom they were first to act. The governor
marched upon this point with his army, and, by an accident of favorable
presage, he and the other detachments arrived at the same time. They
immediately constructed an intrenchment, defended by palisades, in a
commanding situation over the river, where their stores and provisions
were safely deposited. M. d'Orvilliers, with a force of 400 men, was
left for the protection of this dépôt, and to insure the rear of the
advancing army.

On the 13th the French pushed into the hostile country, and passed two
deep and dangerous defiles without opposition, but at a third they were
suddenly assailed by 800 of the Iroquois, who, after the first volley,
dispatched 200 of their number to outflank the invaders, while they
continued the front attack with persevering courage. The French were at
first thrown into some confusion by this fierce and unexpected
onslaught; but the allied savages, accustomed to the forest warfare,
boldly held their ground, and effectually covered the rallying of the
troops. The Iroquois, having failed in overpowering their enemies by
surprise, and conscious of their inferiority in numbers and arms, after
a time broke their array and dispersed among the woods. The French lost
five men killed and twenty wounded; the Iroquois suffered far
more--forty-five were left dead upon the field, and sixty more disabled
in the conflict. The Ottawas, serving under M. de Dénonville, who had
been by no means forward in the strife, with savage ferocity mangled and
devoured the bodies of the slain. The Hurons, and the Iroquois
Christians following the French standard, fought with determined

The army encamped in one of the four great villages of the
Tsonnonthouans, about eight leagues from the fort at the River Des
Sables: they found it totally deserted by the inhabitants, and left it
in ashes. For ten days they marched through the dense forest with great
hardship and difficulty, and met with no traces of the enemy, but they
marked their progress with ruin: they burned about 400,000 bushels of
corn, and destroyed a vast number of hogs. The general, fearing that his
savage allies would desert him if he continued longer in the field, was
then constrained to limit his enterprise. He, however, took this
opportunity of erecting a fort at Niagara, and left the Chevalier de la
Troye with 100 men in garrison. Unfortunately, a deadly malady soon
after nearly destroyed the detachment, and the post was abandoned and
dismantled. The constant and harassing enmity of the savages combined
with the bad state of the provisions left in the fort, to render the
disease which had broken out so fatal in its results.

The French had erected a fort called Chambly,[403] in a strong position
on the left bank of the important River Richelieu.[404] This little
stronghold effectually commanded the navigation of the stream, and
through it, the communication between Lake Champlain and the southern
districts with the waters of the St. Lawrence. On the 13th of November,
1687, a formidable party of the Iroquois suddenly attacked the fort; the
little garrison made a stout defense, and the assailants abandoned the
field with the morning light; the settlement which had grown up in the
neighborhood was, however, ravaged by the fierce Indians, and several of
the inhabitants carried away into captivity. The French attributed this
unexpected invasion to the instigation of their English neighbors, and
it would appear with reason, for, on the failure of the assault, the
governor of New York put his nearest town into a state of defense, as if
in expectation of reprisals.

In this same year there fell upon Canada an evil more severe than Indian
aggression or English hostility. Toward the end of the summer a deadly
malady visited the colony, and carried mourning into almost every
household. So great was the mortality, that M. de Dénonville was
constrained to abandon, or rather defer, his project of humbling the
pride and power of the Tsonnonthouans. He had also reason to doubt the
faith of his Indian allies; even the Hurons of the far West, who had
fought so stoutly by his side on the shores of Lake Ontario, were
discovered to have been at the time in treacherous correspondence with
the Iroquois.

While doubt and disease paralyzed the power of the French, their
dangerous enemies were not idle. Twelve hundred Iroquois warriors
assembled at Lake St. Francis, within two days' march of Montreal, and
haughtily demanded audience of the governor, which was immediately
granted. Their orator proclaimed the power of his race and the weakness
of the white men with all the emphasis and striking illustration of
Indian eloquence. He offered peace on terms proposed by the governor of
New York, but only allowed the French four days for deliberation.

This high-handed diplomacy was backed by formidable demonstrations. The
whole country west of the River Sorel, or Richelieu, was occupied by a
savage host, and the distant fort of Cataracouy, on the Ontario shore,
was with difficulty held against 800 Iroquois, who had burned the farm
stores with flaming arrows, and slain the cattle of the settlers. The
French bowed before the storm they could not resist, and peace was
concluded on conditions that war should cease in the land, and all the
allies should share in the blessings of repose. M. de Dénonville further
agreed to restore the Indian chiefs who had been so treacherously torn
from their native wilds, and sent to labor in the galleys of France.

But, in the mean time, some of the savage allies, disdaining the
peaceful conclusions of negotiation, waged a merciless war. The
Abenaquis, always the fiercest foes of the Iroquois confederacy, took
the field while yet the conferences pended, and fell suddenly upon the
enemy by the banks of the Sorel. They left death behind them on their
path, and pushed on even into the English settlements, where they slew
some of the defenseless inhabitants, and carried away their scalps in
savage triumph. On the other hand, the Iroquois of the Rapids of St.
Louis and the Mountain, made a deadly raid into the invaders'

The Hurons of Michillimakinack were those among the French allies who
most dreaded the conclusion of a treaty of which they feared to become
the first victims. Through the extraordinary machinations and cunning of
their chief, Kondiaronk, or the Rat, they continued to reawaken the
suspicions of the Iroquois against the French, and again strove to stir
up the desolating flames of war.

In the midst of these renewed difficulties M. de Dénonville was recalled
to Europe, his valuable services being required in the armies of his
king. In colonial administration he had shown an ardent zeal for the
interests of the sovereign and the country under his charge, and his
plans for the improvement of Canada were just, sound, and comprehensive,
but he was deficient in tenacity of purpose, and not fortunate or
judicious in the selection of those who enjoyed his confidence. His
otherwise honorable and useful career can, however, never be cleansed
from the fatal blot of one dark act of treachery. From the day when that
evil deed was done, the rude but magnanimous Indian scorned as a broken
reed the sullied honor of the French.

The Comte de Frontenac was once again selected for the important post of
governor of New France, and arrived at Montreal on the 27th of October,
1689, where his predecessor handed over the arduous duties of office.
The state of New France was such as to demand the highest qualities in
the man to whose rule it was intrusted: trade languished, agriculture
was interrupted by savage aggression, and the very existence of the
colony threatened by the growing power of the formidable Iroquois
confederacy. At the same time, a plan for the reduction of New York was
being organized in Paris, which would inevitably call for the
co-operation of the colonial subjects of France, and, in the event of
failure, leave them to bear the brunt of the dangerous quarrel. M. de
Frontenac was happily selected in this time of need.

Impelled by the treacherous machinations of the Huron chief Kondiaronk,
the Iroquois approached the colony in very different guise from that
expected. While M. de Dénonville remained in daily hopes of receiving a
deputation of ten or twelve of the Indians to treat for peace, he was
astounded by the sudden descent of 1200 warriors upon the island of
Montreal.[405] Terrible indeed was the devastation they caused; blood
and ashes marked their path to within three leagues of the territory,
where they blockaded two forts, after having burned the neighboring
houses. A small force of 100 soldiers and 50 Indians, imprudently sent
against these fierce marauders, was instantly overpowered, and taken or
destroyed. When the work of destruction was completed, the Iroquois
re-embarked for the Western lakes, their canoes laden with plunder, and
200 prisoners in their train.

This disastrous incursion filled the French with panic and astonishment.
They at once blew up the forts of Cataracouy and Niagara, burned two
vessels built under their protection, and altogether abandoned the
shores of the Western lakes. The year was not, however, equally
unfortunate in all parts of New France. While the island of Montreal was
swept by the storm of savage invasion, M. d'Iberville supported in the
north the cause of his country, and the warlike Abenaquis avenged upon
the English settlers the evils which their Iroquois allies had inflicted
upon, Canada. Upon his arrival, the Comte de Frontenac determined to
restore the falling fortunes of his people by means of his great
personal influence among the triumphant Iroquois, backed as he was with
the presence of those prisoners who had been so treacherously seized by
his predecessor, but whose entire confidence and good-will he had
acquired while bringing them back to their native country. A chief named
Oureouharé, the most distinguished among the captives, undertook to
negotiate with his countrymen--a duty which was performed more honestly
than efficiently: an exchange of prisoners took place, but nothing
further was accomplished.

The Northern Indians, allies of the French, had long desired to share
the benefits of English commerce with the Iroquois; it had, however,
been the policy of the Canadian government to keep these red tribes
continually at war, with the view of interrupting the communications of
traffic through their country. But the allied savages soon began to see
the necessity of making peace with the Iroquois, in order to establish
relations with the traders of the British settlements. With this view
the Ottawas sent embassadors to the cantons of the Five Nations,
restoring the prisoners captured in the war, and proffering peace and
amity. The agents and missionaries of the French strongly remonstrated
against these proceedings, but in vain; their former allies replied by
insulting declarations of independence, and contemptuous scoffs at their
want of power and courage to meet the enemy in the field; their
commerce, too, was spoken of as unjust, injurious, and inferior to that
of the English, of which they had endeavored to deprive those whom they
could not protect in war; the French were also accused of endeavoring to
shelter themselves under a dishonorable treaty, regardless of the safety
and interests of the Indians who had fought and bled in their cause.

When M. de Frontenac became aware of this formidable disaffection, he
boldly determined to strike a blow at the English power that should
restore the military character of France among the savages, and deprive
the recreant Indians of their expected succor. He therefore organized
three expeditions to invade the British settlements by different
avenues. The first, consisting of 110 men, marched from Montreal,
destined for New York, but only resulted in the surprise and destruction
of the village of Corlar,[407] or Schenectady, and the massacre and
capture of some of the inhabitants. They retreated at noon the following
day, bearing with them forty prisoners; after much suffering from want
of provisions, they were obliged to separate into small parties, when
they were attacked by their exasperated enemies, and sustained some
loss. Many would have perished from hunger in this retreat, but that
they found a resource in living upon horse flesh: their cavalry, from
fifty, was reduced to six by the time they regained the shelter of

The second invading division was mustered at Three Rivers, and only
numbered fifty men, half being Indians. They reached an English
settlement, called Sementels (Salmon Falls), after a long and difficult
march and succeeded in surprising and destroying the village, with most
of its defenders. In their retreat they were sharply attacked, but
succeeded in escaping, through the aid of an advantageous post, which
enabled them to check the pursuers at a narrow bridge. They soon after
fell in with M. de Mamerval, governor of Acadia, with the third party,
and, thus re-enforced, assailed the fortified village of Kaskebé upon
the sea-coast, which surrendered after a heavy loss of the defenders.

To regain the confidence of his Indian allies, M. de Frontenac saw the
necessity of rendering them independent of English commerce, and safe
from the hostility of the Iroquois. To accomplish these objects, he
dispatched a large convoy to the west, escorted by 143 men, and bearing
presents to the savage chiefs. On the way they encountered a party of
the Five Nations, and defeated them after a sanguinary engagement.

All these vigorous measures produced a marked effect: the convoy arrived
at Michillimackinack at the time when the embassadors of the French
allies were on the point of departing to conclude a treaty with the
Iroquois. When, however, the strength of the detachment was seen, and
the valuable presents and merchandise were displayed, the French
interests again revived with the politic savages, and they hastened to
give proofs of their renewed attachment: 110 canoes, bearing furs to the
value of 100,000 crowns, and manned by 300 Indians, were dispatched soon
after for Montreal, to be laid before the governor general. He dismissed
the escort with presents, and exhorted them and their nation to join
with him in humbling their mutual and deadly foe. They departed well
pleased with their reception, and renewed professions of friendship for
the French.

In the mean time the terrible war-cry of the Iroquois was never silent
in the Canadian settlements. Bands of these fierce and merciless
warriors suddenly emerged from the dense forests when least expected,
and burst upon isolated posts and villages with more or less success,
but always with great loss of life to the assailants and assailed,[408]
and with great destruction of the fruits of industry. These disastrous
events caused much disquietude to the governor. He called to his
counsels the Iroquois chief Oureouharé, who still remained attached to
him by the closest bonds of friendship and esteem, and complained of the
bitter hostility of his nation: "You must either not be a true friend,"
said M. de Frontenac, "or you must be powerless in your nation, to
permit them to wage this bitter war against me." The generous chief was
mortified at this discourse, and answered that his remaining with the
French, instead of returning to his own hunting grounds, where he was
ardently beloved, was a proof of his fidelity, and that he was ready to
do any thing that might be required of him, but that it would certainly
need time and the course of circumstances to allay the fury of his
people against those who had treacherously injured them. The governor
could not but acknowledge the justice of Oureouharé's reply; he gave him
new marks of esteem and friendship, and determined more than before to
confide in this wise and important ally.[409]

But now the greatest danger that had ever yet menaced the power of
France upon the American continent hung over the Canadian shores. The
men of New England were at last aroused to activity by the constant
inroads and cruel depredations of their northern neighbors, and in
April, 1690, dispatched a small squadron from Boston, which took
possession of Port Royal and all the province of Acadia. In a month the
expedition returned, with sufficient plunder to repay its cost.
Meanwhile the British settlers deputed six commissioners to meet at New
York in council for their defense. On the first of May, 1690, these
deputies assembled, and promptly determined to set an expedition on foot
for the invasion of Canada. Levies of 800 men were ordered for the
purpose, the contingents of the several states fixed, and general rules
appointed for the organization of their army. A fast-sailing vessel was
dispatched to England with strong representations of the defenseless
state of the British colonies, and with an earnest appeal for aid in the
projected invasion of New France; they desired that ammunition and other
warlike stores might be supplied to their militia for the attempt by
land, and that a fleet of English frigates should be directed up the
River St. Lawrence to co-operate with the colonial force. But at that
time England was still too much weakened by the unhealed wounds of
domestic strife to afford any assistance to her American children, and
they were thrown altogether on their own resources.

New York and New England boldly determined, unaided, to prosecute their
original plans against Canada. General Winthrop, with 800 men, was
marched by the way of Lake Champlain, on the shores of which he was to
have met 500 of the Iroquois warriors; but, through some unaccountable
jealousy, only a small portion of the politic savages came to the place
of muster. Other disappointments also combined to paralyze the British
force: the Indians had failed to provide more than half the number of
canoes necessary for the transport of the troops across the lake, and
the contractor of the army had imprudently neglected to supply
sufficient provisions. No alternative remained for Winthrop but to fall
back upon Albany for subsistence.

In the mean time, Major Schuyler, who had before crossed Lake Champlain
with a smaller British force, pushed on against the French post of La
Prairie de la Madeleine, and attacked it with spirit. He soon overcame
the handful of Canadian militia and Indians who formed the garrison, and
compelled them to fall back upon Chambly, a fort further to the north.
Having met M. de Sanermes and a considerable force advancing to their
relief, they turned and faced their pursuers. Schuyler rashly ventured
to attack this now superior enemy; he was soon forced to retire, with
the loss of nearly thirty men. The French, however, suffered much more
severely in this affair, no less than thirteen officers and nearly
seventy of their men having been killed and wounded.

The naval expedition against Quebec was assembled in Nantasket Road,
near Boston, and consisted of thirty-five vessels of various size, the
largest being a 44-gun frigate. Nearly 2000 troops were embarked in this
squadron, and the chief command was confided by the people of New
England to their distinguished countryman, Sir William Phipps, a man of
humble birth, whose own genius and merit had won for him honor, power,
and universal esteem. The direction of the fleet was given to Captain
Gregory Sugars. The necessary preparations were not completed, and the
fleet did not get under way till the season was far advanced; contrary
winds caused a still further delay; however, several French posts on the
shores of Newfoundland and of the Lower St. Lawrence were captured
without opposition, and the British force arrived at Tadoussac, on the
Saguenay, before authentic tidings of the approaching danger had reached

When the brave old Frontenac learned from his scouts that Winthrop's
corps had retreated, and that Canada was no longer threatened by an
enemy from the landward side, he hastened to the post of honor at
Quebec, while by his orders M. de Ramsey and M. de Callières assembled
the hardy militia of Three Rivers and the adjoining settlements to
re-enforce him with all possible dispatch. The governor found that Major
Provost, who commanded at Quebec before his arrival, had made vigorous
preparation to receive the invaders;[410] it was only necessary,
therefore, to continue the works, and confirm the orders given by his
worthy deputy. A party, under the command of M. de Longueuil, was sent
down the river to observe the motions of the British, and, if possible,
to prevent their landing. At the same time, two canoes were dispatched
by the shallow channel north of the island of Orleans to seek for some
ships with supplies, which were daily expected from France, and to warn
them of the presence of the hostile fleet.

The Comte de Frontenac continued the preparations for defense with
unwearied industry. The regular soldiers and militia were alike
constantly employed upon the works, till in a short time Quebec was
tolerably secure from the chances of a sudden assault. Lines of strong
palisades, here and there armed with small batteries, were formed round
the crown of the lofty headland, and the gates of the city were
barricaded with massive beams of timber and casks filled with earth. A
number of cannon were mounted on advantageous positions, and a large
wind-mill of solid masonry was fitted up as a cavalier. The lower town
was protected by two batteries each of three guns, and the streets
leading up the steep, rocky face of the height were embarrassed with
several intrenchments and rows of "chevaux de frise." Subsequently
during the siege two other batteries were erected a little above the
level of the river. The commanding natural position of the stronghold,
however, offered far more serious obstacles to the assailants than the
hasty and imperfect fortifications.

At daylight on the 5th of October the white sails of the British fleet
were seen rounding the headland of Point Levi, and crowding to the
northern shore of the river, near the village of Beauport; at about ten
o'clock they dropped anchor, lowered their canvas, and swung round with
the receding tide. There they remained inactive till the following
morning. On the 6th, Sir William Phipps sent a haughty summons to the
French chief, demanding an unconditional surrender in the name of King
William of England, and concluding with this imperious sentence: "Your
answer positive in an hour, returned with your own trumpet, with the
return of mine, is required upon the peril that will ensue."

The British officer who bore the summons was led blind-fold through the
town, and ushered into the presence of Comte Frontenac in the
council-room of the castle of Quebec. The bishop, the intendant, and all
the principal officers of the government surrounded the proud old noble.
"Read your message," said he. The Englishman read on, and when he had
finished, laid his watch upon the table with these words: "It is now
ten; I await your answer for one hour." The council started from their
seats, surprised out of their dignity by a burst of sudden anger. The
comte paused for a time ere he could restrain his rage sufficiently to
speak, and then replied, "I do not acknowledge King William, and I well
know that the Prince of Orange is a usurper, who has violated the most
sacred rights of blood and religion ... who wishes to persuade the
nation that he is the saviour of England and the defender of the faith,
though he has violated the laws and privileges of the kingdom, and
overturned the Church of England: this conduct, the Divine Justice to
which Phipps appeals will one day severely punish."

The British officer, unmoved by the storm of indignation which his
message had aroused, desired that this fierce reply should be rendered
to him in writing for the satisfaction of his chief. "I will answer your
master by the mouth of my cannon," replied the angry Frenchman, "that he
may learn that a man of my rank is not to be summoned in this manner."
Thus ended the laconic conference.

On the return of the messenger, Sir William Phipps called a council of
war: it was determined at once to attack the city. At noon, on the 8th,
1300 men were embarked in the boats of the squadron, under the command
of Major Walley, and landed without opposition at La Canardière, a
little to the east of the River St. Charles. While the main body was
being formed on the muddy shore, four companies pushed on toward the
town, in skirmishing order, to clear the front; they had scarcely begun
the ascent of the sloping banks when a sharp fire was poured upon them
by 300 of the Canadian militia, posted among the rocks and bushes on
either flank, and in a small hamlet to the right. Some of the British
winced under this unexpected volley, fired, and fell back; but the
officers, with prompt resolution, gave the order to charge, and
themselves gallantly led the way; the soldiers followed at a rapid pace,
and speedily cleared the ground. Major Walley then advanced with his
whole force to the St. Charles River, still, however, severely harassed
by dropping shots from the active light troops of the French: there he
bivouacked for the night, while the enemy retreated into the garrison.

Toward evening of the same day the four largest vessels of Phipps's
squadron moved boldly up the river, and anchored close against the town.
They opened a spirited but ineffectual fire; their shot, directed
principally against the lofty eminence of the Upper Town, fell almost
harmless, while a vigorous cannonade from the numerous guns of the
fortress replied with overwhelming power. When night interrupted the
strife, the British ships had suffered severely, their rigging was torn
by the hostile shot, and the crews had lost many of their best men. By
the first light of morning, however, Phipps renewed the action with
pertinacious courage, but with no better success. About noon the contest
became evidently hopeless to the stubborn assailants; they weighed
anchor, and, with the receding tide, floated their crippled vessels down
the stream, beyond the reach of the enemy's fire.[411]

The British troops, under Major Walley, although placed in battle array
at daylight, remained inactive, through some unaccountable delay, while
the enemy's attention was diverted by the combat with Phipps's squadron.
At length, about noon, they moved upon the formidable stronghold along
the left bank of the River St. Charles. Some allied savages plunged into
the bush in front to clear the advance, a line of skirmishers protected
either flank, and six field-pieces accompanied the march of the main
body. After having proceeded for some time without molestation, they
were suddenly and fiercely assailed by 200 Canadian volunteers under M.
de Longueuil; the Indians were at once swept away, the skirmishers
overpowered, and the British column itself was forced back by their
gallant charge. Walley, however, drew up his reserve in some brushwood a
little in the rear, and finally compelled the enemy to retreat. During
this smart action, M. de Frontenac, with three battalions, placed
himself upon the opposite bank of the river, in support of the
volunteers, but showed no disposition to cross the stream. That night,
the English troops, harassed, depressed, diminished in numbers, and
scantily supplied, again bivouacked upon the marshy banks of the stream:
a severe frost, for which they were but ill prepared, chilled the weary
limbs of the soldiers and enhanced their sufferings.

On the 10th, Walley once more advanced upon the French positions, in the
hope of breaching their palisades by the fire of his field pieces; but
this attempt was altogether unsuccessful. His flanking parties fell into
ambuscades, and were very severely handled, and his main body was
checked and finally repulsed by a heavy fire from a fortified house on a
commanding position which he had ventured to attack. Utterly dispirited
by this failure, the British fell back in some confusion to the
landing-place, yielding up in one hour what they had so hardly won. That
night many of the soldiers strove to force their way into the boats, and
order was with great difficulty restored; the next day they were
harassed by a continual skirmish. Had it not been for the gallant
conduct of "Captain March, who had a good company, and made the enemy
give back," the confusion would probably have been irretrievable. When
darkness put an end to the fire on both sides, the English troops
received orders to embark in the boats, half a regiment at a time. But
all order was soon lost; four times as many as the boats could sustain
crowded down at once to the beach, rushed into the water, and pressed on
board. The sailors were even forced to throw some of these
panic-stricken men into the river, lest all should sink together. The
noise and confusion increased every moment, despite the utmost exertions
of the officers, and daylight had nearly revealed the dangerous posture
of affairs before the embarkation was completed. The guns were
abandoned, with some valuable stores and ammunition. Had the French
displayed, in following up their advantages, any portion of the energy
and skill which had been so conspicuous in their successful defense, the
British detachment must infallibly have been either captured or totally

Sir William Phipps, having failed by sea and land, resolved to withdraw
from the disastrous conflict. After several ineffectual attempts to
recover the guns and stores which Major Walley had been forced to
abandon, he weighed anchor and descended the St. Lawrence to a place
about nine miles distant from Quebec, whence he sent to the Comte de
Frontenac to negotiate for an exchange of prisoners. Humbled and
disappointed, damaged in fortune and reputation, the English chief
sailed from the scene of his defeat; but misfortune had not yet ceased
to follow him, for he left the shattered wrecks of no less than nine of
his ships among the dangerous shoals of the St. Lawrence. The government
of Massachusetts was dismayed at the disastrous news of which Phipps was
himself the bearer. He arrived at Boston on the 19th of November, with
the remains of his fleet and army, his ships damaged and weather beaten,
and his men almost in a state of mutiny from having received no pay. In
these straits the colonial government found it impracticable to raise
money, and resorted to "bills of credit," the first paper money which
had ever been issued on the American continent.

Great indeed was the joy and triumph of the French when the British
fleet disappeared from the beautiful basin of Quebec. With a proud heart
the gallant old Comte de Frontenac penned the dispatch which told his
royal master of the victory. He failed not to dwell upon the
distinguished merit of the colonial militia, by whose loyalty and
courage the arms of France had been crowned with success. In grateful
memory of this brave defense, the French king caused a medal to be
struck, bearing the inscription, "FRANCIA IN NOVO ORBE VICTRIX: KEBECA
LIBERATA.--A.D., M.D.C.X.C." In the lower town a church was built by the
inhabitants to celebrate their deliverance from the British invaders,
and dedicated to "Nôtre Dame de la Victoire."

On the 12th of November, the vessels, long expected from France, arrived
in safety at Quebec, having escaped the observation of the English fleet
by ascending for some distance the land-locked waters of the Saguenay.
Their presence, however, only tended to increase a scarcity then
pressing upon the colony, the labor of the fields in the preceding
spring having been greatly interrupted by the harassing incursions of
the Iroquois. The troops were distributed into those parts of the
country where supplies could most easily be obtained, and were
cheerfully received by those who had through their valor been protected
from the hated dominion of the stranger.


[Footnote 403: Afterward called Sorel.]

[Footnote 404: The River Iroquois, or Sorel. "Dans les premières années
de notre établissement en Canada les Iroquois, pour faire des courses
jusque dans le centre de nos habitations, descendèrent cette rivière à
laquelle pour cette raison on donna le nom de rivière des Iroquois. On
l'a depuis appellé la Rivière de Richelieu, à cause d'un fort qui
portoit ce nom et qu'on avoit construit à son embouchure. Ce fort ayant
été ruine, M. de Sorel en fit construire un autre auquel on donna son
nom; ce nom s'est communiqué à la rivière qui le conservé encore
aujourd'hui, quoique le fort ne subsiste plus depuis longtemps
(1721)."--Charlevoix, tom. v., p. 221.

"There is another Iroquois river marked on the French maps, falling into
the Teakiki. It received this name from a defeat experienced by the
Iroquois from the Illinois, a race whom they had always
despised."--Charlevoix, vol. vi., p. 118.]

[Footnote 405: Charlevoix says of Montreal in 1721, "Elle n'est point
fortifiée, une simple palisade bastionnée et assez mal entretenue fait
toute sa défence, avec une assez mauvaise redoute sur un petit tertre,
qui sert de boulevard, et va se terminer en douce pente à une petite
place quarrée. C'est ce qu'on rencontre d'abord en arrivant de Quebec.
Il n'y a pas même quarante ans, que la ville étoit toute ouverte, et
tous les jours exposée à être brulée par les sauvages ou par les
Anglois. Ce fut le Chevalier de Callières, frère du plénipotentiaire de
Riswick, qui la fit fermer, tandis qu'il en étoit gouverneur. On
projette depuis quelques années de l'environner de murailles,[406] mais
il ne sera pas aisé d'engager les habitans à y contribuer. Ils sont
braves et ils ne sont pas riches: on les a déjà trouve difficiles à
persuader de la nécessité de cette dépense, et fort convaincus que leur
valeur est plus que suffisante pour défendre leur ville centre quiconque
osoit l'attaquer."]

[Footnote 406: "Ce projet est presentement executé 1740."]

[Footnote 407: "Corlar was the name of a Dutchman of consideration, who
founded the village of Schenectady. This man enjoyed great influence
with the Indians, who, after his death, always addressed the governor of
New York with the title of Corlar, as the name most expressive of
respect with which they were acquainted."--Graham, vol. ii., p. 288.

"Au-dessus de la ville d'Orange il y a un fort avec une bourgade, qui
confinent avec les cantons Iroquois, el qu'on appellé Corlar, d'où ces
sauvages se sont accoûtumés à donner le nom de Corlar au gouverneur de
New York."--Charlevoix, tom. i., p. 222.]

[Footnote 408: "Colden relates that, during the war between the French
and Iroquois, two old men were cut to pieces, and put into the
war-kettle for the Christian Indians to feast on."--Colden, vol. i., p.

"Frontenac stands conspicuous among all his nation for deeds of cruelty
to the Indians. Nothing was more common than for his Indian prisoners to
be given up to his Indian allies to be tormented. One of the most
horrible of these scenes on record was perpetrated under his own eye at
Montreal in 1691."--Colden, vol. i., p. 441, quoted by Howitt.

"Les habitans en firent brûler, persuadés que le seul moyen de corriger
ces barbares de leurs cruantés, étoit de les trailer eux-même comme ils
traitoient les autres."--Charlevoix, _Jésuite_, tom., iii., p. 139.]

[Footnote 409: "Oureouharé mourut en vrai Chrétien, l'an 1697. Le
missionnaire qui l'assista pendant sa maladie, lui parlant un jour des
opprobres et des ignominies de la passion du Sauveur des hommes; il
entra dans un si grand mouvement d'indignation centre les Juifs, qu'il
s'écria, 'Que n'étois-je là? je les aurois bien empêché de traiter ainsi
mon Dieu.' The similar exclamation of the Frank monarch, Clovis, is well
known."--Charlevoix, tom. iii., p. 332.]

[Footnote 410: "It does not appear that the fortifications of Quebec
were of much importance till after the year 1690, when eleven stone
redoubts which served as bastions, were erected in different parts of
the heights of the Upper Town. The remains of several of these redoubts
are still in existence. They were connected with each other by a strong
line of cedar picketing, ten or twelve feet high, banked up with earth
on the inside. This proved sufficient to resist the attacks of the
hostile Indians for several years."--Lambert's _Travels_, vol. i., p.

"In 1720 a more extensive system of fortification was commenced, under
the direction of M. de Lery."--Smith's _Canada_, vol. i., p. 184.]

[Footnote 411: The flag of the rear admiral was shot away, and, drifting
toward the shore, a Canadian swam out into the stream and brought it in
triumphantly. For many years the precious trophy was hung up in the
parish church of Quebec.]


In May, 1691, the Iroquois, to the number of about 1000 warriors, again
poured down upon the settlements near Montreal, and marked their course
with massacre and ruin. Other bands, less numerous, spread themselves
over the fertile and beautiful banks of the Richelieu River, burning the
happy homesteads and rich store-yards of the settlers. At length, the
Sieur de la Mine, with a detachment of militia, surprised a party of
these fierce marauders at Saint Sulpice, and slew them without mercy.
Twelve of the Iroquois escaped into a ruinous house, where they held
out for a time with courage and success; but the French set fire to the
building, and they were obliged to abandon it: some were killed in their
efforts to escape, but five fell alive into the hands of their
exasperated enemies, and were burned, with a savage cruelty such as they
themselves would have exhibited.

Intelligence now arrived that a formidable force of English, Iroquois,
and Mahingan Indians were advancing upon Montreal by the River Richelieu
or Sorel; 800 men led by the Chevalier de Callières, were sent to oppose
their progress, and encamped on the Prairie de la Madeleine,[412] by the
borders of the St. Lawrence. Before daylight, the following morning, the
invaders carried an important position by surprise, slaying several of
the defenders, and finally retreated in good order and with little loss.
On falling back into the woods, they met and destroyed a small French
detachment, and boldly faced a more considerable force under M. de
Valrenes. For an hour and half these formidable warriors withstood the
fire, and repelled the charges of the Canadian troops; but at length
they were overpowered and dispersed, not, however, before inflicting a
loss of no less than 120 men upon their conquerors. An Englishman
captured in the engagement declared that the invaders had purposed to
destroy the harvest, which would have reduced the colony to the last
extremity. The design, in a great measure, failed, and an abundant crop
repaid the industry and successful courage of the French.

At the first news of this alarming inroad, M. de Frontenac hastened to
the post of danger, but tranquillity had already been restored, and the
toils of the husbandman were again plied upon the scene of strife. At
Montreal he found a dispatch from the governor of New England, proposing
an exchange of prisoners and a treaty of neutrality with Canada,
notwithstanding the war then carried on between the mother countries.
The Canadian governor mistrusted the sincerity of the English proposals,
and they were not productive of any result. During the remainder of the
year the Iroquois continued to disturb the repose of the colony by
frequent and mischievous irruptions, and many valuable lives were lost
in repelling those implacable savages.

The war continued with checkered results and heavy losses on both sides
in the two following years. An invasion of the canton of the Agniers, by
the French, was at first successful, but in the retreat the colonists
suffered great privation, and most of their prisoners escaped, while any
of their number that strayed or fell in the rear were immediately cut
off by their fierce pursuers. The fur trade was also much injured by
these long-continued hostilities, for the vigilant enmity of the
Iroquois closed up the communication with the Western country by the
waters of the St. Lawrence and its magnificent tributaries.

We have seen that for a long period the history of the colony is a mere
chronicle of savage and resultless combats, and treacherous truces
between the French and the formidable Iroquois confederacy. This almost
perpetual warfare gave a preponderance to the military interests among
the settlers, not a little injurious to their advance in material
prosperity. The Comte de Frontenac had, by his vigorous administration,
and haughty and unbending character, rendered himself alike respected
and feared by his allies and enemies. But, while all acknowledged his
courage and ability, his system of internal government bore upon the
civil inhabitants with almost intolerable severity; upon them fell all
the burden and labor of the wars; they were ruined by unprofitable toil,
while the soldiers worked the lands for the benefit of the military
officers whom he desired to conciliate. He also countenanced, or at
least tolerated, the fatal trade in spirituous liquors, which his
authority alone could have suppressed. Owing to these causes, the colony
made but little progress, commerce languished, and depression and
discontent fell upon the hearts of the Canadian people.

In the year 1695, M. de Frontenac re-established the fort of
Catarocouy, despite the universal disapprobation of the settlers and the
positive commands of the king. The object was, however, happily and ably
accomplished by M. de Crisasy in a very short time, and without the loss
of a man. This brave and active officer made good use of his powerful
position. He dispatched scouts in all directions, and, by a judicious
arrangement of his small forces, checked the hostilities of the Iroquois
upon the Canadian settlements.

The Sieur de Révérin, a man of enlightened and enterprising mind, had
long desired to develop the resources of the Canadian waters, and in
1697 at length succeeded in associating several merchants with himself,
and establishing a fishery at the harbor of Mount Louis, among the
mountains of Nôtre Dame, half way between Quebec and the extremity of
the Gulf of St. Lawrence on the southern side. The situation was well
chosen, the neighboring soil fertile, and the waters abounded in fish.
But, where nature had provided every thing that industry could require,
the hand of man interfered to counteract her bounty. The hostility of
the English embarrassed the infant settlement and alarmed its founders.
Despite of these difficulties, a plentiful harvest and successful
fishing at first rewarded the adventurers; subsequently, however, they
were less fortunate, and the place was for some time neglected and
almost forgotten.[413]

Louis de Buade, comte de Frontenac, died in the seventy-eighth year of
his age, 1698, having to the last preserved that astonishing energy of
character which had enabled him to overcome the difficulties and dangers
of his adventurous career. He died as he had lived, beloved by many,
respected by all; with the unaided resources of his own strong mind, he
had preserved the power of France on the American continent
undiminished, if not increased, through years of famine, disaster, and
depression. He loved patronage and power, but disdained the
considerations of selfish interest. It must, however, be acknowledged
that a jealous, sullen, and even vindictive temper obscured in some
degree the luster of his success, and detracted from the dignity of his
nature. The Chevalier de Callières, governor of Montreal, was appointed
his successor, to the satisfaction of all classes in the colony.

The new governor[414] applied himself vigorously to the difficult task
of establishing the tranquillity of his territories. He endeavored to
procure the alliance of all the Indian tribes within reach of French
intercourse or commerce, but the high price charged by the Canadian
merchants for their goods proved a constant difficulty in the way of
negotiation, and ever afforded the savages a pretext for disaffection
and complaint. In the midst of his useful labors, this excellent chief
was suddenly cut off by death; his upright and judicious administration
won the esteem of all the colonists, and the truth and honesty of his
dealings with the native tribes gave him an influence over them which
none of his predecessors had ever won. On the petition of the
inhabitants of Canada, the king willingly appointed the Marquis de
Vaudreuil to the vacant government. Soon after his accession a
deputation of the Iroquois arrived at Quebec, and for the first time
formally acknowledged the sovereignty of France, and claimed the
protection of her flag.

M. de Raudot, the intendant, introduced various important judicial and
fiscal improvements in the affairs of the colony at this time; by his
influence and mediation he effectually checked a litigious spirit which
had infused itself among the Canadians to a ruinous extent, and by
strong representations induced the king to remove the cruel restrictions
placed upon colonial industry by the jealousy of the mother country.

In the spring of 1708 a council was held at Montreal to deliberate upon
the course to be pursued in checking the intrigues of the English among
the allied savages: the chiefs of all the Christian Indians and the
faithful and warlike Abenaquis were present on the occasion. It was
resolved that a blow should be struck against the British colonies, and
a body of 400 men, including Indians, was formed for the expedition, the
object of which was kept secret. After a march of 150 leagues across an
almost impracticable country, the French attacked the little fort and
village of Haverhill, garrisoned by thirty New Englandmen, and carried
them after a sharp struggle; many of the defenders were killed or
captured, and the settlement destroyed. The neighboring country was,
however, soon aroused, and the assailants with difficulty effected a
retreat, losing thirty of their men.

Intelligence reached the French in the following year that Colonel
Vetch, who, during a residence of several years at Quebec, had contrived
to sound all the difficult passages of the River St. Lawrence, had
successfully instigated the Queen of England to attempt the conquest of
New France; that a fleet of twenty ships was being prepared for the
expedition, and a force of 6000 regular troops were to sail under its
protection, while 2000 English and as many Indians, under the command of
General Nicholson, were to march upon Montreal by the way of Lake
Champlain. M. de Vaudreuil immediately assembled a council of war to
meet the emergency, where some bold measures were planned, but a
misunderstanding between the governor general and one of his principal
officers paralyzed their execution. Finally, indeed, a considerable
force was marched to anticipate the British attack; but the dissensions
of the leaders, the insubordination of the troops, and the want of
correct intelligence, embarrassed their movements, and drove them to an
inglorious retreat. On the other hand, the English, mistrusting the
faith of their Indian allies, and suffering from a frightful mortality,
burned their canoes and advanced posts, and retreated from the frontier.
The perfidious Iroquois, while professing the closest friendship, had
poisoned the stream hard by the British camp, and thus caused the fatal
malady which decimated their unsuspecting allies. The fleet destined
for the attack of Quebec never crossed the Atlantic: it was sent to
Lisbon instead, to support the falling fortunes of Portugal against the
triumphant arms of Castile.

In the following year, another abortive expedition was undertaken by the
English against Canada. Intelligence was brought to M. de Vaudreuil that
ten ships of war of 50 guns each and upward had arrived from England,
and were assembled at Boston, together with 35 transports capable of
conveying 3000 men, while a force of provincial militia and Indians of
New York, nearly 2000 strong, were collected in that state to assail him
by land. The French governor immediately called together the Iroquois
deputies, and successfully urged their neutrality in the approaching
struggle. He also secured the somewhat doubtful allegiance of the allied
tribes, but only accepted the proffered services of a few warriors of
each nation, and this more as hostages than for the purpose of
increasing his strength.

M. de Vaudreuil then hastened from Montreal to Quebec, where he found
that his lieutenant, M. de Boucourt, had effectually executed his orders
to strengthen the defenses. The settlements along the coast below that
important stronghold were sufficiently guarded to render a hostile
debarkation difficult and dangerous. The governor immediately
re-ascended the St. Lawrence, and formed a corps of 3000 men under M. de
Longueiul, at Chambly, to await the approach of the English. The
invading army, however, retreated without coming to action, having
received information of a great disaster which had befallen their fleet.
The British admiral had neglected the warnings of an experienced French
navigator, named Paradis, who accompanied him, and approached too near a
small island in the narrow and dangerous channel of the Traverse; a
sudden squall from the southeast burst upon him at that critical moment,
and his own, with seven other ships of the fleet, were driven on the
rocky shore, and utterly destroyed: very few men escaped from these
ill-fated vessels.[415]

The generosity and loyalty of the merchants of Quebec furnished the
governor with 50,000 crowns, to strengthen the fortifications of their
town, on the occasion of a rumor that the English were again preparing
an invasion of Canada, in 1712, aided by the Iroquois, to whom they had
become reconciled. At the same time, a new enemy entered the field--the
fiercest and bravest of the native tribes; this people, called Outagamis
or Foxes, joined in a confederacy with the Five Nations, and undertook
to burn the French fort at Detroit,[416] and destroy the inhabitants. A
large force of their warriors advanced upon the little stronghold, but
Du Buisson, the able and gallant commandant, having summoned the
neighboring allies to the assistance of his garrison of twenty
Frenchmen, defeated the dangerous invaders after a series of conflicts
almost unparalleled for obstinacy in Indian war, and destroyed more than
a thousand of their best and bravest.[417]

These important successes, however, could not secure to the French an
equality in trade with their English rivals; their narrow and
injudicious commercial system limited the supply of European goods to be
exchanged for the spoils of the Red Man's forests; the fur trade,
therefore, fell almost wholly into the hands of British merchants, and
even those native tribes in closest alliance with the Canadian governor
obtained their scanty clothing from the looms of Yorkshire, and their
weapons of the chase from the industrious hands of our colonists.

By the treaty of Utrecht in 1713, Louis the Magnificent ceded away
forever, with ignorant indifference, the noble province of Acadia,[418]
the inexhaustible fisheries of Newfoundland, and his claims to the vast
but almost unknown regions of Hudson's Bay; his nominal sovereignty over
the Iroquois was also thrown into the scale,[419] and thus a
dearly-purchased peace restored comparative tranquillity to the remnant
of his American empire.[420]

The fierce Outagamis, more incensed than weakened by their losses at
Detroit, made savage and murderous reprisals upon all the nations allied
to the French. Their vindictive vigilance rendered the routes between
the distant posts of Canada, and those southward to Louisiana,[421] for
many years almost impracticable. At one time, indeed, when overwhelmed
by a successful invasion, these implacable savages made a formal cession
of their territories to M. de Vaudreuil; but, the moment opportunity
offered, they renewed hostilities, and, although beaten in repeated
encounters, having united the remnant of their tribe to the powerful
Sioux and Chichachas,[423] they continued for a long time to harass the
steps of their detested conquerors.

On the 10th of April, 1725, M. de Vaudreuil closed his useful career.
For one-and-twenty years he had discharged his important duties with
unswerving loyalty, ability, and vigilance. Good fortune crowned him
with well-merited success, and he went to rest from his earthly labors
with the blessings of a grateful people, who, under his wise rule, had
rapidly progressed to prosperity.

The Marquis de Beauharnois, captain of the marine, succeeded to the
government of the now tranquil colony. His anxiety was aroused, however,
the year after his accession, by the vigorous efforts of the English to
extend their commerce even into the heart of the Canadian territories.
Governor Burnet, of New York, had erected a fort and trading post at
Oswego, with the view of monopolizing the rich traffic of the Western
lakes. To counteract this design, M. de Beauharnois sent the Baron de
Longueuil to negotiate with the Indians in the neighborhood of Niagara,
for their consent to the erection of a French fort and establishment
upon the banks of their magnificent river, where it enters the waters of
Ontario. After many difficulties in reconciling the jealousy of the
native tribes, the French succeeded in effecting their object. On the
other hand, the men of New York strengthened their defenses at Oswego,
and increased the garrison. Angry communications then passed between the
French and English governors in peremptory demands for its abandonment
by the one, and prompt refusals by the other. Each was well aware of the
importance of the position: it served as a means of diverting nearly all
the Indian trade by Albany and the channel of the Hudson into the
British colonies, and also formed a frontier protection to those
numerous and flourishing settlements which Anglo-Saxon industry and
courage were rapidly forming in the wilderness.

In the vain hope of checking the irrepressible energies of rival
colonization, Beauharnois erected a fort at Crown Point, on Lake
Champlain, commanding its important navigation, and also serving to hold
in terror the settlers on the neighboring banks of the Hudson and
Connecticut. The English remonstrated without effect against this
occupation, and the French remained in peaceable possession of their
establishment. The next war that broke out between the mother countries
spread rapine and destruction over the colonial frontiers, without any
real result beyond mutual injury and embittered hatred. From this fort
at Crown Point, and other posts held by the Canadians, marauding parties
poured upon the British settlements, and destroyed them with horrid
barbarity. A party of French and Indians even penetrated to Saratoga,
within forty miles of Albany, attacked and burned the fort, and slew or
carried into captivity the unhappy defenders.

For many subsequent years the history of Canada is but a chronicle of
the accession of governors and the registration of royal edicts. In
comparison with her southern rivals, the progress in material prosperity
was very slow. Idleness and drunkenness, with all their attendant evils,
were rife to a most injurious extent. The innumerable fêtes, or holidays
of the Church, afforded opportunities to the dissolute, and occasioned
frequent instances of serious disorders, till the king was urged to
interfere: the number of these fête-days was then very much reduced, to
the great benefit of the colony. The feudal system of tenure also
operated most unfavorably upon the development of agricultural
resources, and the forced partition of lands tended to reduce all the
landholders to a fraternity of pauperism. The court of France endeavored
vainly to remedy these evils, without removing the causes, and passed
various edicts to encourage the further clearance of wild land, and to
stimulate settlement.

In 1745, the year when the power of France in Europe was exalted by the
splendid victory of Fontenoy, a dangerous blow was struck at her
sovereignty in America by the capture of Louisburg, and with it the
whole island of Cape Breton,[424] by the New Englanders under Mr.
Pepperel,[425] aided by Admiral Warren's squadron. This disaster was no
sooner known in Paris[430] than an extensive armament was equipped under
the command of the Duc d'Anville, an officer of known valor and ability.
The wounded pride of the French hurried on rapidly the preparations for
this expedition, which they confidently hoped would redeem the
tarnished honor of their arms in the Western world. Early in May the
fleet was already completely appointed; but the elements did not second
these energetic preparations, and contrary winds detained the armament
till the 22d of June. Then it at last put to sea, in the formidable
strength of eleven ships of the line, thirty smaller vessels of war, and
transports containing 3000 regular soldiers. Nova Scotia, the
Acadia[431] of other days, was their destination. There it was expected
that the old French settlers, who had unwillingly submitted to English
conquest, would readily range themselves once more under the
fleur-de-lys: Canada had already sent her contingent of 1700 men under
M. de Ramsay to aid the enterprise, and M. de Conflans, with four ships
of the line from the West Indies, was directed to join the squadron.

This formidable fleet was but a short time at sea when the ships
separated and fell into hopeless confusion. On the 12th of September,
indeed, the Duc d'Anville reached the Western continent in the
Northumberland, accompanied by a few other vessels, but there no laurels
awaited the gallant admiral: he was suddenly seized with apoplexy, and
in four days his body was committed to the deep. The vice admiral
immediately proposed returning to France, on account of the absence of
the greater part of his force; but other officers strongly opposed this
desponding counsel, and urged a bold attack upon Nova Scotia[432] rather
than an inglorious retreat. The more vigorous course was adopted by a
council of war, which threw the vice admiral into such a state of
frantic excitement that he ran himself through the body, fancying he had
fallen into the hands of the enemy. De la Jonquière succeeded to the
command, and, although more than three-score years of age, acted with
unimpaired energy. But the elements were again hostile to France; the
fleet was dispersed by a violent storm off Cape Sable, and the shattered
remnant of the expedition returned ingloriously to their country,
without having accomplished any of the objects for which they had been
sent forth.

The government at Paris was, however, by no means cast down by these
untoward occurrences, and the armament was speedily equipped to renew
their efforts against the English colonies. The expedition was prepared
at Brest, under the command of M. de la Jonquière, and, at the same
time, a squadron under M. de St. George was armed with a view to
threaten the coasts of British India.

The English ministry, early informed of all the movements of their
opponents, resolved to intercept both these squadrons, which they had
been apprised would sail from port at the same time. Admiral Anson and
Rear-admiral Warren were ordered upon this enterprise with a formidable
fleet, and, taking their departure from Plymouth, steered for Cape
Finisterre, on the Gallican coast. On the third of May, 1746, they fell
in with the French squadrons of six large men-of-war, as many frigates,
four armed East Indiamen, and a valuable convoy of thirty ships. The
enemy's heavier vessels immediately formed in order of battle, while the
merchantmen made all sail away, under the protection of the frigates.
The British were also ready for action, and a severe combat ensued.
Before night all the French line of battle ships were captured after a
spirited defense, but two thirds of the convoy escaped through the
darkness of the night. A considerable quantity of bullion fell into the
hands of the victors, and their grateful sovereign rewarded the courage
and good fortune of the admirals by raising Anson to the peerage, and
decorating Warren with the ribbon of the Bath.

Admiral de la Jonquière, the newly-appointed governor of Canada, was
among the numerous captives who graced the triumph of the British fleet.
When the news of this event reached Paris, the king appointed to the
vacant dignity the Comte de la Galissonière,[433] an officer of
distinguished merit and ability. The wisdom of this selection was
speedily displayed; the new governor no sooner entered upon the duties
of office than his active zeal found employment in endeavoring to
develop the magnificent resources of his province. He made himself
thoroughly acquainted with the face of the country, the climate,
population, agriculture, and commerce, and then presented an able
statement to the French court of the great importance of the colony, and
a system which, had it been adopted in time, might have secured it
against English aggression.

The Comte de la Galissonière proposed that M. du Quesne, a skillful
engineer, should be appointed to establish a line of fortifications
through the interior of the country, and, at the same time, urged the
government of France to send out 10,000 peasants to form settlements on
the banks of the great lakes and southern rivers. By these means he
affirmed that the English colonies would be restricted within the narrow
tract lying eastward from the Allegany Mountains, and in time laid open
to invasion and ruin. His advice was, however, disregarded, and the
splendid province of Canada soon passed forever from under the sway of

Under the impression that the expected peace between the mother
countries would render it important to define the boundaries of their
colonial possessions, the active governor of Canada dispatched M. de
Celeron de Bienville, with 300 men, to traverse the vast wilderness
lying from Detroit southeast to the Apalachian Mountains. Assuming this
range as the limit of the British colonies, he directed that leaden
plates, engraved with the arms of France, should be buried at particular
places in the western country, to mark the territories of France, and
that the chief of the expedition should endeavor to secure a promise
from the Indians to exclude for the future all English traders. At the
same time, he gave notice to the governor of Pennsylvania that he was
commanded by the King of France to seize all British merchants found in
those countries, and to confiscate their goods. De Celeron fulfilled his
difficult commission to the best of his powers, but the forms of
possession which he executed excited the jealous apprehension of the
Indians, who concluded that he designed to subject or even enslave them.

When M. de la Galissonière failed in his endeavor to obtain the aid of
an extensive immigration from France, he turned his thoughts toward the
Acadian settlers[435] (whom the treaty of Utrecht had transferred to
the British crown), with the object of forming a new colony. The
readiest expedient to influence this simple and pious people was,
obviously, by gaining over their clergy; the Abbé le Loutre was selected
as the fittest embassador to induce them to withdraw from allegiance to
the English government. This politic and unscrupulous priest appealed to
their interests, nationality, and religion as inducements to abandon the
conquered country, and to establish themselves under the French crown in
a new settlement which he proposed to form on the Canadian side of
Acadia. Le Loutre's persuasions influenced many of these primitive
people to proceed to the French posts, where every protection and
attention was bestowed upon them.

Animated by the success of this measure, and sanguine that large numbers
of the Acadians would follow the first seceders, De la Galissonière
induced the home government to appoint a considerable sum yearly to
carrying out his views; but, in the midst of his patriotic exertions, he
was obliged to hand over the reins of government to M. de la Jonquière,
who had now arrived to claim the post so ably held by another during his
captivity with the English. Galissonière, however, before he sailed for
France, magnanimously furnished his successor with the best information
on colonial matters, and pointed out the most promising plans for the
improvement of the province.[436] De la Jonquière unwisely rejected
such as related to the Acadian settlements; but the King of France
disapproved of his inaction, and reprimanded him for not having
continued the course of his predecessor. Instructions were given him to
take immediate possession of the neighboring country, to build new forts
for its retention, and to occupy it with troops; he was also desired to
aid Le Loutre in all his proceedings, and to forward his designs. In
obedience to these orders, M. de Boishebert was dispatched with a body
of troops and some peasants, to take post near the mouth of the River
St. John, which was looked upon as an important post for the defense of
the new settlement.

These measures inevitably aroused the jealousy of the English governor
of Nova Scotia, who made repeated remonstrances on the subject, but with
no other effect than that of causing De la Jonquière to warn his
officers to avoid all possible grounds of dispute, as he expected the
limits of the rival powers would be speedily arranged.

(1749.) Supplies for the new post at St. John's could only be obtained
from Quebec, and transmitted by the long and difficult circuit of the
whole Acadian peninsula. M. de Vergor was sent on this mission in an
armed sloop, containing military and other stores for the French and
Indians. He was ordered to avoid all English vessels, but, if he could
no longer shun pursuit, to fight to the last. This stern command was not
obeyed, for he surrendered without an effort to Captain Rous, who,
apprised of his design, had intercepted him on the coast. On the news of
the capture of this sloop, M. de la Jonquière empowered the governor of
Louisburg[437] to make reprisals upon all English vessels that might
enter his port.

General Cornwallis, governor of Halifax,[438] sent a detachment of
British troops, under Major Lawrence, to watch the movements of La
Corne, the French commander, who had been directed to build a fort on
the Bay of Fundy, called Beau-sejour.[439] As soon as Le Loutre became
aware of the arrival of the English, he caused the houses and homesteads
of those unfortunate Acadians who remained faithful to England to be
burned. Soon after this cruel severity the French and English leaders
held a conference, and agreed to erect forts opposite to each other on
each side of the River Beau-bassin,[440] but to remain at peace till
they received further instructions.

While occasions of dispute were thus arising on the Nova Scotia
peninsula, a still more dangerous difficulty threatened the cause of
peace in the far West. The governors of the British colonies continued
to grant license to their merchants to trade on the banks of the Ohio,
in contempt of the haughty pretensions of French sovereignty. By the
orders of La Jonquière, three of these adventurers were seized, with all
their goods, and carried captive to Montreal: after a long examination,
however, they were discharged.


[Footnote 412: "Vis à vis de Montreal, du côté du sud est un endroit qu'
on appellé la Prairie de la Madeleine."--Charlevoix, tom. ii., p. 233.

"Le Cap de la Madeleine a eu son nom de l'Abbé de la Madeleine, un des
membres de la Compagnie des cent Associés." The name of the Prairie had
probably the same origin.--Charlevoix, tom. v., p. 167.]

[Footnote 413: There was a flourishing settlement at Mount Louis in
1758, which was destroyed by General Wolfe.]

[Footnote 414: "Sans avoir le brilliant de son prédécesseur, il en avait
tout le solide; des vûës droites et désinteressés, sans préjuge et sans
passion; une fermeté toujours d'accord avec la raison, une valeur, que
le flegme sçavoit modérer et rendre utile: un grand sens, beaucoup de
probité et d'honneur, et une pénétration d'esprit, à laquelle une grande
application et une longue expérience avoient ajonté tout ce que
l'expérience peut donner de lumières. Il avoit pris des les commencemens
un grand empire sur les sauvages, qui le connoisoient exacte à tenir sa
parole, et ferme à vouloir qu' on lui gardât celles qu' on lui avoient
données. Les François de leur côté étaient convaincus qu'il n'
exigeroient jamais rien d'eux, que de raisonnable; que pour n' avoir ni
la naissance, ni les grandes alliances du Comte de Frontenac, ni le rang
de lieutenant général des armées du roi, il ne sçauroit pas moins se
faire obéir que lui."--Charlevoix, tom. iii., p. 353.]

[Footnote 415: "Enfin la retraite des deux armées Anglaises qui devaient
attaquer en même tems la Nouvelle France par terre et par mer, et
diviser ses forces en les occupant aux deux extremités de la colonie, n'
étant plus douteuse, et le bruit s' étant répandu que la première avait
fait naufrage dans le fleuve St. Laurent vers les Sept Isles, M. de
Vaudreuil y envoya plusieurs barques. Elles y trouverent les carcasses
de huit gros vaisseaux, dont on avoit enlevé les canons et les meilleurs
effets, et près de trois mille personnes noyées, dont les corps étoient
étendus sur le rivage. On y reconnut deux compagnies entières des Gardes
de la Reine, qu' on distingua à leurs casaques rouges, et plusieurs
familles Ecossoises, destinées à peupler le Canada, mais quoique le
reste de la flotte eut reste mouillé plusieurs jours au même endroit,
pour enlever toute la charge des vaisseaux brisés, on ne laissa point d'
y faire un assez grand butin."--Charlevoix, tom. iv., p. 82.]

[Footnote 416: The city of Detroit dates its history from July, 1701. At
that time M. de la Motte Cadillac, with one hundred men, and a Jesuit,
carrying with them every thing necessary for the commencement and
support of the establishment meditated, reached this place. "How
numerous and diversified," said a public literary document, "are the
incidents compressed within the history of this settlement. No place in
the United States presents such a series of events interesting in
themselves and permanently affecting, as they occurred, its progress and
prosperity. Five times its flag has changed; three different
sovereignties have claimed its allegiance; and since it has been held by
the United States, its government has been thrice transferred. Twice it
has been besieged by the Indians, once captured in war, and once burned
to the ground."

"Detroit has long been considered as the limit of civilization toward
the northwest. This town, or commercial port, is dignified by the name,
and enjoys the chartered rights of a city, although its population at
present does not exceed three thousand. The banks of the river above and
below the city are lined with a French population, descendants of the
first European traders among the Indians in that quarter, and extending
from Lake Erie to Lake St. Clair, increasing in density as they approach
the town, and averaging, perhaps, one hundred per mile. This place, but
a little while ago so distant, is now brought within four days of the
city of New York, the track pursued being seven hundred and fifty miles.
Here, at Detroit, some of the finest steamers in North America come and
go every day, connecting it with the east, and have begun already to
search out the distant west and north."--Colton's _Tour to the American
Lakes_, vol. i., p. 46.]

[Footnote 417: "Le fruit de sa victoire (Da Buisson) fut que les Anglois
désespérèrent de s' établir au Détroit, ce qui auroit été la ruine entière
de la Nouvelle France, non seulement à cause de la situation de ce lieu,
qui est le centre et le plus beau pays du Canada, mais encore parcequ'il
ne nous auroit plus été possible d'entretenir la moindre communication
avec les sauvages d'en haut ni avec la Louisiane."--Charlevoix, vol.
iv., p. 105.]

[Footnote 418: "Le roi très Chrétien céde à la reine d'Angleterre à
perpétuite, l'Acadie, ou Nouvelle Ecosse, en entier, conformément à ses
anciennes limites, comme aussi la ville de Port Royal, maintenant
appellée Annapolis Royale."--_Article XII. du Traité d'Utrecht_, 1713.]

[Footnote 419: "Ce dernier article ne nous ôta rien de réel, et ne donna
non plus rien aux Anglais, parceque les cantons renouvellèrent les
protestations, qu'ils avoient déjà faites plus d'une fois contre les
prétentions réciproques de leurs voisins et ont très bien sçu se
maintenir dans la possession de leur liberté et da leur

[Footnote 420: "Il (Prior) étoit pareillement autorisé à traité sur les
limites de l'Amérique septentrionale, et s'il plaisoit au roi, ces deux
articles pouvoient être regles en peu de tems."--_Mémoires de Torcy sur
la Paix d'Utrecht_, vol. iii., p. 426.]

[Footnote 421: It is hardly remembered at the present day that the
French nation once claimed, and had begun to colonize the whole region
which lies at the back of the thirteen original United States, from the
mouth of the St. Lawrence to that of the Mississippi, comprising both
the Canadas and the vast fertile valley of the Ohio, and had actually
occupied the two outlets of this whole region by its ports at Quebec and
New Orleans.[422] Canada, the oldest French colony, and the only one on
the continent to which that nation has sent any considerable number of
settlers, was under the management of an exclusive company, from 1663 to
the downfall of what was called the Mississippi Scheme, in 1720; and
this circumstance, still more, perhaps, than the vicious system of
granting the land to non-resident proprietors, to be held by seignorial
tenure, checked its progress. Louisiana, with more sources of surplus
wealth from climate and soil, was never a very thriving colony, and was
surrendered to Spain with little reluctance, from which last power its
dominion passed to the United States.

The French traders and hunters intermarried and mixed with the Indians
at the back of our settlements, and extended their scattered posts along
the whole course of the two vast rivers of that continent. Even at this
day, far away on the upper waters of these mighty streams, and beyond
the utmost limits reached by the backwoodsman, the traveler discovers
villages in which the aspect and social usages of the people, their
festivities and their solemnities, in which the white and red man mingle
on equal terms, strangely contrast with the habits of the
Anglo-American, and announce to him, on his first approach, their Gallic
origin.--Merivale, vol. i., p. 58; Sismondi, _Etudes sur L'Ecole
Politique_, vol. ii., p. 200; Latrobe.]

[Footnote 422: "La ville de Nouvelle Orléans fut fondée dans l'année
1717. M. de Bienville fit choix de la situation. On a nommé cetto
fameuse ville la Nouvelle Orléans. Ceux qui lui ont donné ce nom
croyoient qu' Orléans est du genre féminin, mais qu' importe? l'usage
est établi et il est au-dessus des regles de la grammaire. Cette ville
est la première qu' un des plus grands fleuves du monde ait vu s'elever
aur ses bords."--Charlevoix, vol. viii., p. 192.]

[Footnote 423: "Garcilasso de la Vega parle des Chichachas dans son
histoire de la conquête de la Floride, et il les place à peu près au
même endroit où ils sont encore presentement.... Ce sont encore les plus
braves soldats de la Louisiane, mais ils étoient beaucoup plus nombreux
du tem de Ferdinand de Soto.... C'est notre alliance aves les Illinois
qui nous a mis en guerre avec les Chichachas et les Anglois de la
Caroline attisent le feu. Nôtre établissement dans la Louisiane fait
grand mal au coeur à ceux-ci; c'est une barrière que nous mettons entre
leurs puissantes colonies de l'Amérique septentrionale, et le
Mexique.... Les Espagnols qui nous voyent avec des yeux si jaloux nous
fortifier dans ce pays, ne sentent pas encore l'importance du service
que nous leur rendons."--Charlevoix, tom. vi., p. 160.]

[Footnote 424: From the year 1706 the name of Cape Breton was changed to
Ile Royale. Louisburg was called le Havre à l'Anglais.]

[Footnote 425: "The importance of the colonies[426] was too little
considered until the commencement of the last war. The reduction of Cape
Breton by the people of New England was an acquisition so unexpected and
fortunate, that America became, on that remarkable event, a more general
topic of conversation. Mr. Shirley, the governor of Massachusetts Bay,
was the principal projector of that glorious enterprise; an enterprise
which reduced to the obedience of his Britannic majesty the _Dunkirk_ of
North America. Of such consequence to the French was the possession of
that important key to their American settlements, that its restitution
was, in reality, the purchase of the last general peace of
Europe."[427]--_A Review of the Military Operations in North America, in
a Letter to a Nobleman_, p. 4 (London, 1757).

"The plan of the invasion of Cape Breton was laid at Boston, and New
England[428] bore the expense of it. A merchant named Pepperel,[429] who
had excited, encouraged, and directed the enterprise, was intrusted with
the command of the army of 6000 men, which had been levied for this
expedition. Though these forces, convoyed by a squadron from Jamaica,
brought the first news to Cape Breton of the danger that threatened it;
though the advantage of a surprise would have secured the landing
without opposition; though they had but six hundred regular troops to
encounter, and eight hundred inhabitants hastily armed, the success of
the undertaking was still precarious. What great exploits, indeed, could
have been expected from militia suddenly assembled, who had never seen a
siege or faced an enemy, and were to act under the direction of
sea-officers only? These inexperienced troops stood in need of the
assistance of some fortunate accident, with which they were indeed
favored in a singular manner. The construction and repair of the
fortifications had always been left to the care of the garrison at
Louisburg. The soldiers were eager to be employed on these works, as the
means of procuring a comfortable subsistence. When they found that those
who were to have paid them appropriated to themselves the profits of
their labors, they demanded justice: it was denied them, and they
determined to assert their right. As the depredations had been shared
between the chief persons of the colony and the subaltern officers, the
soldiers could obtain no redress. They had, in consequence, lived in
open rebellion for above six months when the English appeared before the
place. This was the time to conciliate the minds of both parties; the
soldiers made the first advances, but their commanders distrusted a
generosity of which they themselves were incapable. It was firmly
believed that the soldiers were only desirous of sallying out that they
might have an opportunity of deserting, and their own officers kept them
in a manner prisoners, until a defense so ill managed had reduced them
to the necessity of capitulating. The whole island shared the fate of
Louisburg, its only bulwark. This valuable possession, restored to
France by the treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, was again attacked by the
English in 1748, and taken. The possession was confirmed to Great
Britain by the peace in 1763, since which the fortifications have been
blown up, and the town of Louisburg dismantled."--Winterbottom's
_History of America_, vol. iv., p. 14.]

[Footnote 426: "L'île de Cap Bréton n'étoit pas alors (at the time of
the treaty of Ryswick), un objet, et l'établissement que nous y avions
n'avoit rien qui put exciter la jalousie des Anglais: elle nous
demeura."--Charlevoix, tom. iii., p. 349.]

[Footnote 427: "The island of Cape Breton, of which the French were
shamefully left in possession at the treaty of Utrecht, 1713, through
the negligence or corruption of the British ministry, when Great Britain
had the power of giving law to her enemies."--Russell's _Modern Europe_,
vol. iii., p. 223.

"Only three years after Cape Breton was taken by the New Englanders,
England was obliged reluctantly to resign her favorite conquest of Cape
Breton, in order to obtain the restitution of Madras. This was by the
treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle in 1748. The final conquest took place in
1758, by the English, under Amherst and Wolfe."--Belsham, vol. ii., p.

[Footnote 428: "The sum of £235,749 was granted by the British
Parliament to the provinces of New England, to reimburse them for the
expense of reducing Cape Breton."--Smollett, vol. iii., p. 224.]

[Footnote 429: "The news of this victory being transmitted to England,
Mr. Pepperel was preferred to the dignity of a baronet of Great
Britain."--Ibid., vol. iii., p. 154.]

[Footnote 430: "When Marshal Belleisle was told of the taking of Cape
Breton, he said he could believe that, because the ministry had no hand
in it. We are making bonfires for Cape Breton, and thundering over
Genoa, while our army in Flanders is running away."--Walpole's _Letters
to Sir Horace Mann_, July 26, 1745.]

[Footnote 431: "The tract of country known by the name of Nova Scotia,
or New Scotland, was in 1784 divided into two provinces, viz., New
Brunswick on the southwest, and Nova Scotia on the southeast. The former
comprehends that part of the old province of Nova Scotia which lies to
the northward and westward of a line drawn from the mouth of the River
St. Croix, through the center of the Bay of Fundy to Baye Verte, and
thence into the Gulf of St. Lawrence, including all lands within six
leagues of the coast. The rest is the province of Nova Scotia, to which
is annexed the island of St. John's, which lies north of it in the Gulf
of St. Lawrence. The modern Nova Scotia is the French Acadia. The modern
New Brunswick is the French Nouvelle Ecosse. This name was given by Sir
William Alexander, to whom the first grant of lands was given by James
I.; since then the country has frequently changed hands, from the French
to the English nation, backward and forward. It was not confirmed to the
English till the peace of Utrecht. Three thousand families were
transported into this country in 1749, at the charge of the government,
and they built and settled the town of Halifax."--Winterbottom's
_History of America_, vol. iv., p. 39.]

[Footnote 432: "La cour de France avoit extrêmement à coeur de recouvrer
cette province (Acadia); les efforts reitérés des Anglois pour l'avoir
en leur puissance, et plus encore, leur triomphe après l'avoir conquise,
avoit enfin ouvert les yeux aux François sur la grandeur de la perte
qu'ils avoient faite. M. de Pontchartrain écrivit ainsi à M. de
Beaubarnois: 'Je vous ai fait assez connoître combien il est important
de reprendre ce poste (le Port Royal) avant que les ennemies y soient
solidement établis. La conservation de toute l'Amérique septentrionale,
et le commerce des Pêches le démandent également: ce sont deux objets
qui me touchent vivement.'"--Charlevoix, tom. iv., p. 90.]

[Footnote 433: "Roland Michel Barrin, marquis de la Galissonière,
remplit la poste de gouverneur comme s'il ne se fut toute sa vie occupé
que de cet objet.... Il établit à Quebec un arsenal maritime, et un
chantier de construction, où l'on n'employa que les bois des pays. Il
conçut, proposa, et fit adopter le vasté plan dont il commenca
l'execution, de joindre le Canada et la Louisiana par une chaine de
forts et d'établissements, le long de l'Ohio et des Mississippi, à
travers les régions désertes qui séparaient ces deux colonies à l'ouest
des lacs. A l'avantage d'établir entre elles une communication moins
pénible et moins long que par le nord, se joignoit celui de pouvoir
faire parvenir les dépêches en France, en hiver par la Louisiane, tandis
que l'embouchure du fleuve St. Laurent est fermeé par les glaces; enfin
celui de resserrer les Anglais entre les montagnes et la mer.... Il
emporta tous les regrets quand il revint en France, en 1749.... La
défaite de l'amiral Anglais, Byng, et la prise de Minorque que fut le
fruit de cette victoire décisive, couronnèrent sa carrière. Il avoit
entrepris cette dernière expédition contre l'avis des médécins qui lui
avoient annoncé sa mort comme prochaine, s'il se rembarquoit.... Il
cacha ses maux tant qu'il put, mais il fut enfin obligé de se démettre
du commandement. Il revint en France et se mit en route pour
Fontainebleau où étoit alors le roi. Les forces lui manquèrent
totalement à Nemours, où il mourut le 26 Octobre, 1756.... A ses talens
éminens comme marin, la Galissonière unissoit une infinité de
connaissances.... Sérieux et ferme, mais en même tems doux, modéré,
affable, et intégre, il se faisito respecter et chérir de tous ceux qui
servoient sous ses ordres.... Tant de belles qualités étoient cachées
sous un extérieur peu avantageux. La Galissonière étoit de petite taille
et bossu. Lorsque les sauvages vinrent le saluer à son arrivée au
Canada, frappés de son peu d'apparence, ils lui parlèrent en ces termes,
'Il faut que tu aies une bien belle âme, puisqu' avec un si vilain
corps, le grand chef notre père t'a envoyé ici pour nous commander.' Ils
ne tardèrent pas à reconnaître la justice de leur opinion, et
entourèrent de leur amour et de leur vénération, en l'appellant du nom
de père, l'homme qui ne se servit du pouvoir que pour améliorer leur
sort."--_Biographie Universelle_, art. Galissonière.]

[Footnote 434: "In observing on old maps the extent of the ancient
French colonies in America, I was haunted by one painful idea. I asked
myself how the government of my country could have left colonies to
perish which would now be to us a source of inexhaustible prosperity.
From Acadia and Canada to Louisiana, from the mouth of the St. Lawrence
to that of the Mississippi, the territories of New France surrounded
what originally formed the confederation of the thirteen United States.
The eleven other states, the district of Columbia, the Michigan,
Northwest, Missouri, Oregon, and Arkansas territories, belonged, or
would have belonged to us, as they now belong to the United States, by
the cession of the English and Spaniards, our first heirs in Canada and
in Louisiana. More than two thirds of North America would acknowledge
the sovereignty of France.... We possessed here vast countries which
might have offered a home to the excess of our population, an important
market to our commerce, a nursery to our navy. Now we are forced to
confine in our prisons culprits condemned by the tribunals, for want of
a spot of ground whereon to place these wretched creatures. We are
excluded from the New World, where the human race is recommencing. The
English and Spanish languages serve to express the thoughts of many
millions of men in Africa, in Asia, in the South Sea Islands, on the
continent of the two Americas; and we, disinherited of the conquests of
our courage and our genius, hear the language of Racine, of Colbert, and
of Louis XIV. spoken merely in a few hamlets of Louisiana and Canada,
under a foreign sway. There it remains, as though but for an evidence of
the reverses of our fortune and the errors of our policy. Thus, then,
has France disappeared from North America, like those Indian tribes with
which she sympathized, and some of the wrecks of which I have
beheld."--Chateaubriand's _Travels in America_, vol. ii., p. 207.]

[Footnote 435: From the treaty of St. Germain-en-Laye, 1632, till 1654,
the French had quiet possession of Acadia; then Cromwell sent Major
Sedgwick to attack it, with orders to expel all who would not
acknowledge themselves subjects of England. Sedgwick executed his
commission, and Cromwell passed a grant of Acadia to one De la Tour, a
French refugee, who had purchased Lord Sterling's title to that country;
and De la Tour soon after transferred his right to Sir William Temple.

Nova Scotia was ceded to France at the treaty of Breda, in 1670. In 1690
it was retaken by Sir William Phipps on his way to Quebec. It was given
back to France by the treaty of Ryswick; retaken by General Nicholson
(who gave the name of Annapolis to Port Royal) in 1710, during the War
of the Succession. It was formally and finally ceded to England at the
peace of Utrecht. The undefined limits of Nova Scotia were a constant
source of dispute between the French and English nations.]

[Footnote 436: Professor Kalm thus speaks of La Galissonière, who was
the governor of Quebec at the time of his travels through Canada. "He
was of a low stature and somewhat hump-backed. He has a surprising
knowledge in all branches of science, and especially in natural history,
in which he is so well versed, that, when he began to speak to me about
it, I imagined I saw our great Linnæus under a new form. When he spoke
of the use of natural history, of the method of learning, and employing
it to raise the state of a country, I was astonished to see him take his
reasons from politics, as well as natural philosophy, mathematics, and
other sciences. I own that my conversation with this nobleman was very
instructive to me, and I always drew a great deal of useful knowledge
from it. He told me several ways of employing natural history to the
purposes of politics, and to make a country powerful in order to depress
its envious neighbors. Never has natural history had a greater promotion
in this country, and it is very doubtful whether it will ever have its
equal here. As soon as he got the place of governor general, he began to
take those measures for getting information in natural history which I
have mentioned before. When he saw people who had for some time been in
a settled place of the country, especially in the more remote parts, he
always questioned them about the trees, plants, earths, stones, ores,
animals, &c., of the place. Those who seemed to have clearer notions
than the rest were obliged to give him circumstantial descriptions of
what they had seen. He himself wrote down all the accounts he received,
and by this great appreciation, so uncommon among persons of his rank,
he soon acquired a knowledge of the most distant parts of America. The
priests, commandants of forts and of several distant places, are often
surprised by his questions, and wonder at his knowledge when they come
to Quebec to pay their visits to him, for he often tells them that near
such a mountain, or on such a shore, &c., where they often went a
hunting, there are some particular plants, trees, earths, ores, &c., for
he had got a knowledge of these things before. From hence it happened
that some of the inhabitants believed he had a preternatural knowledge
of things, as he was able to mention all the curiosities of places,
sometimes near 200 Swedish miles from Quebec, though he never was there
himself. Never was there a better statesman than he, and nobody can take
better measures, and choose more proper means for improving a country
and increasing its welfare. Canada was scarcely acquainted with the
treasure it possessed in the person of this nobleman when it lost him
again; the king wanted his services at home, and could not have him so
far off."--Kalm, in Pinkerton, vol. xiii., p. 679.]

[Footnote 437: Louisburg, together with the whole island of Cape Breton,
had been restored to the French by the treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle in

[Footnote 438: "In the year after the peace of Aix-la-Chapelle, the land
forces of Great Britain were reduced to little more than 18,000 men;
those in Minorca, Gibraltar, and the American plantations, to 10,000;
while the sailors retained in the royal navy were under
17,000."--_Commons' Journals_, Nov. 23, 1749, and Jan. 19, 1750.

"From the large number both of soldiers and seamen suddenly discharged,
it was found that they might be either driven to distress or tempted to
depredation. Thus, both for their own comfort and for the quiet of the
remaining community, emigration seemed to afford a safe and excellent
resource. The province of Nova Scotia was fixed upon for this
experiment, and the freehold of fifty acres was offered to each settler,
with ten acres more for every child brought with him, besides a free
passage, and an exemption from all taxes during a term of ten years.
Allured by such advantages, above 4000 persons, with their families,
embarked under the command of Colonel Cornwallis, and landed at the
harbor of Chebuctow. The new town which soon arose from those labors
received its name from the Earl of Halifax, who presided at the Board of
Trade, and who had the principal share in the foundation of this colony.
In the first winter there were but 300 huts of wood, surrounded by a
palisade; but Halifax at present deserves to be ranked among the most
thriving dependencies of the British crown."--Lord Mahon's _History of
England_, vol. iv., p. 6.]

[Footnote 439: "As it was the intention of the government to build a
strong fort at Beau-sejour, Chaussegros de Lery, son of the engineer who
traced the fortifications of Quebec, was sent for that purpose. De
Vassan, who succeeded La Corne in the command of this post, was
instructed, as his predecessor had been, to pay the utmost attention to
the Abbé le Loutre, and to avoid all disputes with the English. De
Vassan's penetration soon led him to discover Le Loutre's true
character; but, not wishing to have any misunderstanding with him, he
left him full scope in the management of the affairs of the Acadians.
These unhappy people had from the first felt the iron hand of his
tyranny; neither the provisions nor clothing furnished by the crown
could be obtained without repeated supplications and prayers, and in
every instance he showed a heart steeled against every sentiment of
humanity."--Smith's _History of Canada_, vol. i., p. 217.]

[Footnote 440: "We soon after came to anchor in the basin, called by the
French, with much propriety, Beau-bassin, where a hundred ships of the
line may ride in safety without crowding, and from the time we entered
this bay we found water enough every where for a first-rate ship of war.
It is about five miles from Beau-sejour, now Fort Cumberland."--Knox's
_Historical Journal_, vol. i., p. 35.]


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