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CHAMPLAIN, SAMUEL DE, soldier, cartographer, navigator, author, explorer, founder of Quebec in 1608, and colonial administrator, son of Anthoine de Champlain and Margueritte Le Roy; m. 30 Dec. 1610 Helene (Helaine) Boullé (Boulle) in Paris; they had no children; d. 25 Dec. 1635 at Quebec.
The place and date of Samuel de Champlain’s birth continue to raise doubts in the 21st century. Pre-1615 baptismal registers that were kept at Brouage in Saintonge, France, where Champlain grew up, are lost and no irrefutable archival record has been uncovered. Champlain described himself as being “of Brouageˮ in Des sauvages, the report of his 1603 voyage. Moreover, the will of his uncle Guilheume Allène designated him “natural del bruazeˮ (native of Brouage), which indicates that he was probably born there. Historians of the 19th and 20th centuries have suggested 1567, 1570, and 1580 as the years of his birth. In Les voyages de la Nouvelle France occidentale, dicte Canada, faits par le Sr de Champlain (1632), he wrote of “having spent thirty-eight years of my life making several voyages at sea,ˮ and thus the year 1580 has seemed plausible to some. According to this primary source, the only one known to date, and an estimate based on the presumed baptismal date of the man he would consider a father, François Gravé Du Pont, Champlain would have begun his voyages at the age of about 14, which was not unusual for the child of a mariner. The discussion has been reopened by other discoveries, particularly that of a baptismal certificate dated 13 Aug. 1574 in the register of the Saint-Yon Temple, the Protestant place of worship in La Rochelle. In 2012 Jean-Marie Germe, a Poitou genealogist, discovered an entry there for one Samuel Chapeleau, son of Anthoynne Chapeleau and Margerite Le Roy. In parish registers the spelling of proper names is often fanciful since clerks would write down what they thought they had heard. In this case, the three first names, as well as the mother’s surname, are similar. In addition, there is a striking similarity between “Chapeleau” and “Champlain.” Moreover, since Brouage is situated less than half a day’s sailing from La Rochelle, Samuel’s mother could have been staying there before her child was born. Champlain’s baptism in a Protestant church would confirm the generally accepted hypothesis that his childhood was spent in the faith officially referred to at the time as the so-called reformed religion. If Champlain was born around 1574, he would have been about 19 at the time that he held his first military post in Brittany in 1593, which makes his later promotions very plausible. These details do not, however, constitute irrefutable evidence. It should be noted that Chapeleau is a very common surname in Saintonge and that a number of women named Marguerite Le Roy had already been discovered in the registers. Accordingly, before this document is accepted as Champlain’s baptismal certificate, other sources are essential.
The uncertainty surrounding Champlain’s birth also extends to the religion into which he was baptized. The name Samuel, of biblical origin, was usually given to Huguenot children. The town of Brouage, like several others in Saintonge, had been alternately Roman Catholic and Protestant, but from 1577 onward, having been captured by the Catholic soldiers of the Duc de Mayenne, it remained loyal to the religion of King Henri III of France despite numerous attempts by La Rochelle’s Protestants to establish their authority there. It is known, however, that Protestantism was often practised in secret. Although Champlain certainly received a Catholic education, as he demonstrated throughout his life, he retained links with Huguenots, including Pierre Dugua de Monts, lieutenant-general of New France, under whose authority he established the outposts of Saint Croix Island (Maine) in 1604, Port-Royal (Annapolis Royal, N.S.) in 1605, and Quebec in 1608. His marriage to Helene Boullé, a daughter of Protestants, also implies that he did have a past connection to that religion.
Champlain’s well-established parentage appears on his marriage contract, where he is referred to as the son of “Anthoine de Champlain, in his lifetime captain in the navy … and of Dame Margueritte Le Roy.ˮ It is also known that his parents owned several houses in Brouage. These simple facts indicate that they would have been considered prominent citizens of this small port town. His marriage to Helene Boullé, daughter of Nicolas Boullé (Boulle), a secretary of the king’s privy chamber, confirms this status. Such an important figure would have consented to the marriage of his young daughter (who was less than 12 years of age and whose elder sister was still unmarried) only to a true “Gentilhomme de merite [meritorious gentleman],” as was clearly stated in Les chroniques de l’Ordre des Ursulines.
It might be deduced from this information that Champlain was a nobleman. Some imaginative historians want to give him a secret, illustrious identity or to see him as an illegitimate son of Henri IV, to whom he owed his mission of founding New France. Such is not the case. The king’s illegitimate children were valued almost as highly as legitimate children. They were brought up at court, or in close proximity, and trained to occupy the highest positions. This was not the case for Champlain: throughout his career, he served under the authority of high-ranking nobles. His name, which was generally written with the nobiliary particle “de,” occasionally along with the word “sieur,” signified primarily that his surname was already attached to a landed estate. Although at least eight known properties in France bore the name Champlain (campus planus in Latin) in the 16th century, there is no conclusive evidence that one of them had belonged to his family. Some indications favour a locality near Saint-Pierre-des-Landes in the department of Mayenne, near Vitré, to which Helene Boullé’s parents had fled from the Catholic persecution of Protestants. Champlain maintained close relations there with members of the Protestant community, such as Pierre Noel, Sieur de Cohigne, who signed his marriage contract in Paris, and his son, René, Sieur de Bourgjoly, who took part in an expedition to Acadia, where he died in 1605. The Champlain family is not known to have held any titles of nobility, but it can be inferred from their social affinities, goods, and activities in state service that they lived in the style of the higher ranks. Champlain could be described as a “noble manˮ or “squire,ˮ terms usually employed for the nobility, and thus became the lieutenant of Viceroy Henri II de Bourbon, 3rd Prince de Condé, in 1612. Although his status allowed him to hold relatively important positions under great lords, it did not give him access to prestigious responsibilities that depended directly on the king or were reserved for members of the high nobility, which explains why he never held the title of governor of New France.
Champlain has been credited as having abilities as a “painterˮ (as was recorded by the authors of the “Factum des marchands de Saint-Malo contre Champlain,ˮ published in Nouveaux documents sur Champlain et son époque), a cartographer, and a navigator, as well as having an excellent command of the French language, but little is known about how he acquired these skills. No trace of any school from Champlain’s time has been discovered at Brouage; the first small academy, where young noblemen were trained for their future military life, was founded in 1594. Champlain could not have studied there, and there is nothing to indicate that he obtained his education elsewhere. One or several people in his circle probably taught him writing, drawing, cartography, and other subjects. His father and his uncle Guilheume Allène, prosperous ship captains, would have been able to prepare him for the job of navigator and appoint masters to give him a solid grounding in French, arithmetic, and geography. Brouage, then a rapidly developing port town open to the Atlantic world, numbered over a thousand inhabitants, along with several thousand sailors of all nationalities who put into harbour to get fresh supplies of salt. Interactions with this cosmopolitan, dynamic population would likely have aroused curiosity about the new territories.
Champlain’s first military mission falls within the long period of the Wars of Religion (1562–98). He apparently signed up during a recruitment campaign of the governor of Saintonge and Brouage, François d’Espinay, Seigneur de Saint-Luc, who in March 1593 led 800 soldiers to assist Maréchal Jean IV d’Aumont, commander of Brittany’s royal army. The king, Henri IV, had officially converted to Catholicism on 25 July, which should have put an end to the conflict. Yet some territories, such as several regions in western France where the Spanish refused to abandon the hard-won Breton ports, continued to resist his authority. The Brouage regiment, commanded by René de Rivery, Chevalier de Potonville, was stationed at Paimpol from October 1593. Going overland to Quimper, Champlain took up his post as quartermaster (the title was given to him in the 1595 account books of the royal army active in Brittany) under the authority of Jean Hardy, the officer in charge of supplies. During that year Champlain acted as the officer responsible for billeting troops and, as Hardy’s assistant, undertook a secret voyage in the king’s service. In 1595 he was paid generously, receiving a monthly wage of 33⅓ écus in March and April and 25 écus for the months from May to December, which was considerably higher than the average land revenue of a minor noble. In 1597 he was company captain in Quimper.
In Brittany Champlain rubbed shoulders with important French dignitaries and English sailors who played a determining role in his apprenticeship. Queen Elizabeth I sent an English contingent to assist the French loyal to Henri IV in their fight against the Spaniards. Among these forces was the cartographer Ralph Treswell, who drew the map of the province of Brittany mainly for the purposes of military operations. As quartermaster, Champlain had to produce the maps needed for billeting and moving the troops. It is very probable that he worked closely with the specialist Treswell and benefited from his knowledge and experience.
France and Spain eventually signed a peace treaty at Vervins on 2 May 1598. A fleet of French ships chartered by King Philip II of Spain and commanded by General Pedro de Zubiaur repatriated the surviving Spanish troops. On 9 September Champlain left from Blavet (Port-Louis, France) aboard the Saint-Julien, piloted by his uncle Allène and bound for Cadiz, Spain, where he disembarked five days later. He stayed at Sanlúcar de Barrameda on the Atlantic coast, the main port for Spanish expeditions to America.
In his “Brief discours des choses plus remarquables que Sammuel Champlain de Brouage a reconneues aux Indes Occidentalles,” which was included in, among other works, the Œuvres of Charles-Honoré Laverdière*, Champlain wrote: “I resolved, in order not to remain idle, to find a means to make a voyage to Spain, [and] being there to practise & acquire knowledge in order[,] by their favour & intervention[,] to ensure that I could embark on one of the ships of the fleet that the King of Spain sends every year to the West Indies.” His plan could not have taken shape under better conditions. The Saint-Julien was requisitioned to join the West Indies fleet commanded by Francisco Coloma. According to the “Brief discours,ˮ Champlain assumed “command of the said vesselˮ at the request of his uncle, who was detained in Spain by General Zubiaur. The fleet raised anchor on 3 Feb. 1599 and was in Puerto Rico from 22 to 28 March and in St Domingo (Haiti) on 8 April, where it confronted a Franco–Anglo–Dutch squadron. After two months in Veracruz, Mexico (1 May–29 June), the Saint-Julien, seriously damaged, reached Cuba, where it was decommissioned and sold at auction. Champlain stayed in Havana until 6 Jan. 1600 and then returned on one of the Spanish fleet’s ships to Sanlúcar de Barrameda, arriving on 26 February. At this point he undertook the writing of the “Brief discours.” He remained more than a year in Spain, mainly at Cadiz, and watched over Allène, who probably died at the end of June after drafting a will in Champlain’s favour.
The “Brief discours” is neither a travel narrative nor a log, but rather a collection of observations on the fauna, flora, geography, and inhabitants of the West Indies, written on Champlain’s return from a full year of exploration. The original manuscript, which must have contained at least 81 drawings, has not been found. Three manuscript versions survive: one preserved in the State Archives of Turin, Italy, another in the library of the University of Bologna, and the most complete in the John Carter Brown Library in Providence, R.I. The information, although generally close to the facts, also contains errors and inaccuracies, Champlain having been unable to make carefully detailed studies in situ and therefore writing his descriptions from a distance. The “Brief discoursˮ appears to be a draft, which has raised doubts about whether Champlain is the author and even whether he took part in this voyage. Numerous corroborating accounts in both Spanish and French archives have resolved such uncertainties. The most complete version was in the custody of Aymard de Chaste, who was the commander of the Sovereign Order of Malta, vice-admiral of France, and governor of Dieppe. He bequeathed his library to the Minim convent there. In 1855 the document was found in the possession of the local librarian, Pierre-Jacques Féret, and it subsequently belonged to the Parisian book dealer Maisonneuve et Compagnie, which sold it to the John Carter Brown Library in 1884.
It was not by chance that de Chaste had a version of the “Brief discours” in his possession. After Allène’s death, Champlain returned to Brouage in 1601 to settle his uncle’s estate and visit his comrades in arms, including Rivery de Potonville, knight of the Sovereign Order of Malta and commander of Oisemont, Picardy, some 31 miles from Dieppe. It is likely that Potonville asked de Chaste, whom he knew, to turn over the manuscript to King Henri IV. The sovereign received Champlain and rewarded him with a pension.
In 1603 de Chaste, who had the monopoly on trade in New France and who knew that Henri IV had great plans for exploring and colonizing America, recommended Champlain to the king. Appreciating Champlain’s experience and talent, de Chaste asked him “to make the voyage, in order to see this country, & what the entrepreneurs will do there,” as Champlain was to relate in Les voyages de la Nouvelle France occidentale. The king charged Champlain with a new mission as an observer, which would result in a trustworthy report. Champlain was to meet François Gravé Du Pont, a captain from Saint-Malo who had been trading furs in the St Lawrence River valley for some 20 years. He could not have wished for better company to introduce him to Canada and its inhabitants, as Gravé was well acquainted with those whom the French called the Montagnais (Innu). Two of them, brought to France in 1602 by the lieutenant-general of New France, Pierre de Chauvin de Tonnetuit, went along on the voyage to the St Lawrence. With Champlain, they boarded the Bonne-Renommée, captained by Gravé. The Françoise, under the command of Jehan Girot, and another ship (name unknown) headed by Jean Sarcel de Prévert and belonging to Gilles Éberard du Colombier of Saint-Malo, were also part of the little fleet. These survey vessels were the same ones that brought shipments of fish and furs back to France. They had a capacity of about 100 tons and on average were constructed with 40 feet of keel clearance, being 19 feet wide and 10 feet deep. On 15 March the three ships weighed anchor at Honfleur, and on 26 May they entered Tadoussac’s bay.
In 1600 Chauvin had decided to build a trading post at Tadoussac to form an alliance with the Montagnais from north of the St Lawrence. These people had succeeded in establishing themselves as coordinators of the movements and exchanges with northern hunters who journeyed from place to place over a territory extending from west of the Trois-Rivières (Rivière Saint-Maurice) waterway to the Rivière du Nord (Ottawa) valley and as far as north of Lac Piékouagami (Saint-Jean).
At the beginning of the 17th century the many Indigenous peoples of the St Lawrence region who were in more or less direct contact with the Europeans can be divided into two large linguistic families: Iroquoian and Algonquian. The First Nations who belonged to the former group were, among others, those the French called the Iroquois, the Neutres (Neutrals), and the Huron. The latter name derived from the 14th-century term hure – boar’s head – because the bristly hair on top of their heads resembled that of the animal (in the 17th century they would be known as the Wendat). The five Iroquois nations – the Mohawk (called Agniers by the French), Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, and Seneca – were organized into a league referred to by the French as the Iroquois Confederacy (Haudenosaunee). Those who spoke Iroquoian languages lived mainly southwest of the St Lawrence in the Great Lakes region and north of what would become New York State. The peoples who spoke Algonquian languages occupied the entire eastern part of Canada and Acadia except for lands occupied by the Inuit. The French traded mainly with the nations they knew as the Algoumequin (Algonquin), Montagnais, Etchemin (Maliseet), and Micmac (Mi’kmaq). They had access to top-quality pelts because of the environmental conditions of the boreal forests where the animals lived and the vast network of waterways that facilitated the hunters’ movements. Through these various alliances, which included the Huron, it was possible to transport European products, furs, and food supplies over great distances via rivers and lakes.
Upon their arrival (27 May 1603) at Pointe de Saint-Mathieu (Pointe aux Alouettes), near Tadoussac, the French encountered the Montagnais and their Algonquin and Etchemin allies, who numbered about a thousand. All were ready to trade the furs they had prepared over the winter. The Montagnais chief Anadabijou invited the French to take part in celebrations being held to honour a recent victory over the Mohawk of the River of the Iroquois (Richelieu), the combatants having brought back around a hundred heads. This great gathering (which Champlain called “Tabagieˮ [feast] in Des sauvages) brought together, in a simple lodging, 80 to 100 people, including Champlain and Gravé. The latter, after his numerous trading voyages on the St Lawrence, no doubt understood the language and could, if necessary, interpret for Champlain, who himself must also have acquired some rudiments in the two months he spent on the boat with the Montagnais coming back from France. As Champlain reported in Des sauvages, the celebration began with a series of speeches. One of the two Montagnais told of his stay in France in the manner of an ambassador returning from a mission. He described “the warm welcome given them by the King, & the good treatment they had received in France, & that they had assured themselves that His said Majesty wished them well, & wished to populate their land, & to make peace with their enemies (who are the Iroquois) or send them forces to conquer them.ˮ In turn, Anadabijou gave a lengthy address, saying “that he was very glad that His said Majesty would populate their land, & make war on their enemies, that there was no nation in the world to whom they wished better than the French: He ended by telling them all of the good & useful things they would receive from His said Majesty.ˮ It was Champlain’s understanding that the Montagnais chief also wielded power over other allied peoples and that he spoke in their name. It seemed clear to him that those present were considering the advantages of French settlement and a commercial alliance with the king of France in exchange for military aid; he stated as much in Des sauvages. The Montagnais thus established themselves as those who had brokered the alliance with the French and, in some fashion, committed their allies. This alliance would not go unheeded and would subsequently be confirmed on several occasions. On 28 May the celebrants went to Tadoussac, where they resumed the festivities on 9 June.
From 11 June onward Champlain, Gravé, and their First Nations companions were engaged in a voyage of exploration. In Des sauvages Champlain reported that sailing up the Saguenay River “twelve to fifteen leagues” led to the revelation that there existed a “sea which is saltyˮ farther north, according to information from the Montagnais, who also described the river system. This body of water would be named Hudson Bay after its exploration by Henry Hudson seven years later. Following their return to Tadoussac, Gravé led Champlain westward on the St Lawrence on 18 June. Full of admiration, Champlain carefully examined the shores and the land he saw, noting each geographical feature, listing the species of trees, and, like Jacques Cartier (but without naming him), observing “diamonds in the slate rocksˮ at Quebec. These were in fact quartz crystals similar to those extracted near Alençon, France. Champlain recognized Trois-Rivières as a “place suitable for habitationˮ that was easily accessible to members of the First Nations who supplied furs. Having navigated the River of the Iroquois against the current over “five or six leagues,” the explorers turned back after learning that there was a large lake farther south (possibly Lake George), “at the end of which the Iroquois were cabined,ˮ and a “river” (Hudson River) that emptied off the “coast of Florida” (New England).
Entering the Hochelaga archipelago at the beginning of July, Champlain was surprised by the number of islands and the maze of different waterways, and he noted the variety of species of fruit trees and wild animals suitable for hunting and eating. Especially intrigued by the possibility of a navigable route westward, he paid no heed to the absence of people on the islands despite the fact that they were considered fertile, which Cartier had previously realized. The voyageurs had to interrupt their expedition when they were faced with some ten “rapids” (Lachine rapids) since their bark could not take them across safely. Their Indigenous companions described to them the river’s sources, piecing together what would later be named the Great Lakes system, including Niagara Falls. From this information the explorers deduced that a stream issuing from this network might lead to the “southern sea, being salty” (Pacific Ocean). Back in Tadoussac on 11 July, the French corroborated these hypotheses with other First Nations members, who confirmed the possibility of reaching the Asian Sea by using their canoes and following their instructions. Gravé and Champlain progressed along the St Lawrence River to the Gaspé region, where they stayed from 15 to 19 July. From First Nation members they heard high praise of Acadia with its silver and copper mines, which would likely encourage future exploration projects. From there the voyageurs returned to Tadoussac to carry out a final trade and, after a stop in the Gaspé, embarked on 24 August for Honfleur, casting anchor there on 20 Sept. 1603.
King Henri IV, who was in Normandy from 17 August to 25 September, probably received a map of the St Lawrence, together with a summary report of the voyage, directly from Champlain’s hands. The detailed account, dedicated to Charles de Montmorency, admiral of France, was granted the right of publication on 15 November under the title Des sauvages, ou, voyage de Samuel Champlain, de Brouage, faict en la France nouvelle, l’an mil six cens trois: contenant, les mœurs, façon de vivre, mariages, guerres, & habitations des sauvages de Canadas, de la descouverture de plus de quatre cens cinquante lieuës dans le pays des sauvages, quels peuples y habitent, des animaux qui s’y trouvent, des rivieres, lacs, isles, & terres, & quels arbres & fruicts elles produisent, de la coste d’Arcadie, des terres que l’on y a descouvertes, & de plusieurs mines qui y sont, selon le rapport des sauvages. As the full title indicates, the work took the form of a travel journal, its contents presented in chronological order. It painted a picture of the St Lawrence River and valley as well as its inhabitants. For the first time a European explorer had given a precise description of navigational conditions by using the toponymies of his predecessors, including those of Cartier and the cartographer Guillaume Levasseur (1601 map). Yet he never specifically named them. There can be no doubt that Champlain had been informed of their voyages since he used place names that were already known. He may have been afraid of detracting from his own merit by doing justice to his predecessors, or he may have wanted to make his account smoother by not dwelling on earlier documents. Whatever the case, he succeeded in establishing himself as a peerless observer.
Champlain’s view of the First Nations constitutes the great novelty of his work. The explorer often identified Indigenous peoples by the names that he believed they used themselves and with which his fishing and trading compatriots were familiar. Never before had these peoples been referred to in writing by anything other than the generic term “savages.” Similarly, specific names were used for chiefs such as Anadabijou and Begourat. They and their followers were the ones who supplied Champlain with fundamental geographical information. His approach was part of a diplomatic endeavour to which he was still only a witness: previously established alliances had to be broadened to ensure the continuation of trade and other French projects in America.
As King Henri IV had requested, and in view of possible colonization efforts, Des sauvages is addressed directly to the king, who was well aware that French sailors had long been familiar with the shores of Acadia, where hundreds of them spent summers catching and drying cod and trading with nations such as the Mi’kmaq and Etchemin. The latter, who frequented or inhabited the greater St Croix, Saint John, Penobscot, and Kennebec rivers region, already had long experience of bartering with European fishermen and traders, who found fish of excellent quality there and a milder climate than that in Newfoundland or at the mouth of the St Lawrence. Acadia was on a latitude similar to that of southwest France, its soil and forests offering mineral, plant-based, and animal resources likely to encourage a permanent settlement. The failure of the trading post on Sable Island, which had been established in 1598 by New France’s viceroy, Troilus de La Roche de Mesgouez, did not dissuade the explorers from planning to settle in this very accessible region.
Henri IV, who wanted to extend the French presence in America, took a keen interest in Champlain’s account. He saw within it the possibility of extracting minerals and pursuing fishing and fur trading with the help of allied First Nations. Despite the death on 13 May 1603 of Champlain’s patron, de Chaste, Henri IV remained fixed on his colonial objective. On 8 November he named Dugua lieutenant-general of Acadia, and on 18 December he granted him a ten-year monopoly on the territory’s fur trade.
As requested by Dugua and ordered by the king, Champlain took part in the expedition, again as an observer and explorer and with the aim of writing an accurate report. His responsibilities were identical to those of 1603, but this time he was required to lend his support to founding a settlement in Acadia, at a site to be determined. The Bonne-Renommée and the Don-de-Dieu left Honfleur on 7 April 1604 and Le Havre two days later with about a hundred settlers on board and materials suitable for the rapid construction of habitations. The Don-de-Dieu, with Dugua and Champlain on board, arrived in Port-au-Mouton on 13 May. From there, on the 19th, Champlain and a few men left in a bark to reconnoitre the Acadian peninsula’s coastline, including the Bay of Fundy, the Saint John River, and, farther south, the St Croix River (called the Rivière des Estechemins, after the name used by the First Nations). With its wide, deep mouth accessible year-round by European vessels, shores suitable for cultivation, and a location favourable to the fur trade, as well as its naturally fortified island about 1,640 feet in circumference, the St Croix River presented many advantages. A decision was made to set up a temporary settlement on Saint Croix Island. While Gravé returned to France with a cargo of pelts, Champlain and his companions continued their explorations. Throughout the month of September they hugged the coasts, entering the Penobscot and Kennebec rivers in search of a passage to the continent’s interior. The hard winter of 1604–5 sealed the ephemeral destiny of the Saint Croix Island settlement. None had foreseen that ice would prevent sailing on the river, thereby depriving the settlers of game and fresh meat. Of the 79 people who wintered there, 35 or 36 died of scurvy. At last, on 15 June 1605, Gravé returned with about 40 men and supplies. The small colony could now prepare to migrate.
In the summer Champlain and other Frenchmen resumed their investigation as far as Mallebarre (Nauset Harbor, Mass.), south of Cape Cod. Faithfully recording the journey, Champlain incorporated in his daily chronicle of events his observations on latitudes, estimates of distances, depth of water, recesses in the shoreline, various populations, and nature. In this way, some 15 years before the English settled there permanently, he traced the outlines and revealed the coastal geography of what would become New England. He subsequently integrated this information into his report entitled Les voyages du sieur de Champlain, Xaintongeois, capitaine ordinaire pour le roy, en la marine, which he would present to the king and publish in Paris in 1613.
In September 1605 the colonists dismantled the dwellings on Saint Croix Island and rebuilt them at Port-Royal, on a promontory spotted by the fishermen of Cartier’s time and designated “Port Réal” on Giacomo Gastaldi’s map La Nuova Francia ([Venice, 1556]). Dugua had returned to France, and in his absence Gravé was in charge of the colony. Champlain set up his office and prepared a vegetable garden. He again dedicated himself, unsuccessfully, to searching for mines. In September–October 1606 he returned to the Atlantic coast, exploring beyond Cape Cod, this time with the lieutenant-governor of Acadia, Jean de Biencourt de Poutrincourt et de Saint-Just. Although the bays were very attractive to the French, the explorers were poorly received by some Indigenous peoples and were permanently dissuaded from considering a settlement in New England, especially after four of their number were murdered at Port Fortuné (Stage Harbor, Mass.) [see Louis Hébert].
The winters of 1605–6 and 1606–7 were milder than previous ones. During the first winter, 12 settlers out of 45 had died of scurvy; the second claimed a further 4 to 7 victims. The new habitants acclimatized little by little, learning to protect themselves from the disease by eating fresh food obtained through hunting and fishing and from vegetable gardens, including Champlain’s. In setting up the Order of Good Cheer during the winter of 1606–7, Champlain established a ceremony with origins in the chivalric orders. Daily meals rich in fresh meat and fish, prepared in the Parisian style and washed down with abundant wine, brought together colonists as well as Mi’kmaq chiefs, of whom the most loyal was Membertou. Plays, such as Le théâtre de Neptune en la Nouvelle-France (which the lawyer Marc Lescarbot would publish in Paris in 1609), were staged by Indigenous peoples and colonists. In attempting to transplant a way of life characteristic of the French aristocracy, the little group at Port-Royal succeeded chiefly in strengthening the ties between members, adopting a few local customs, and socializing with the First Nations. As well, they almost managed to conquer scurvy.
The inhabitants were greatly disappointed in spring 1607 when they learned that they had to return to France because Dugua’s trading company had been dissolved. Once again, Champlain and his companions explored the coast between Port-Royal and Canseau (Canso, N.S.) during the summer, leaving Acadia for France in September. Although the king had satisfied competitors by putting an end to Dugua’s monopoly, he nevertheless agreed, on 7 Jan. 1608, to extend it for another year to compensate Dugua’s losses.
Champlain weighed anchor on 13 April 1608 at Honfleur and went ashore on 3 June at Tadoussac, stationing himself there to build a bark. Mariners avoided sailing a large vessel beyond the mouth of the Saguenay River because they feared running aground on the bed of the St Lawrence River, with which they were not familiar.
In 1608 Gravé proposed Quebec as the site of the new settlement. Champlain took on the entire responsibility, having been appointed his lieutenant by Dugua, who had not returned to the colony and henceforth defended its interests at court. Close to the site named Stadaconé by Cartier in 1535, the place had also been clearly identified by Levasseur in 1601. According to ethno-linguistic experts, the name “Quebec” is said to be of Montagnais origin and means “the place where the river narrows.” The name can be compared to Bricquebec, the designation of a site of Scandinavian origin in Normandy, north of the Cotentin peninsula. According to the Dictionnaire étymologique des noms de communes de Normandie, “Bricquebec” means “the waterway of the hill.” The semantic and linguistic similarity is surprising, and it raises questions about the circumstances that led to the name Quebec, which perhaps sprang from a combination of Norman and Algonquian place names.
The site on which Quebec stands presented numerous advantages for the establishment of a colonial outpost. Accessible by water and with a harbour suitable for docking, it offered natural protection, with potential enemies being visible at a distance from its headland. The area’s arable soil, especially on Île d’Orléans, would ensure enough food for survival. As well, it could serve as a convenient meeting point with members of First Nations interested in the fur trade.
Arriving at Quebec on 3 July, Champlain and his men set about clearing the land at the foot of Cap Diamant to raise a fortified habitation comprising three main buildings and a storehouse for food supplies, which were surrounded by a ditch, a stockade, and an area for cultivation. A few days later he confronted some of Dugua’s rivals, who were conspiring to kill him and thereby end the trade monopoly. Locksmith Antoine Natel identified Jean Duval, also a locksmith, as the chief traitor. Duval was brought before a specially formed tribunal, found guilty, and hanged in full view of all. Order was restored to the colony, but it would still have to face an even harsher winter than those experienced in Acadia. Of the 28 people who wintered there, only 8 remained when Gravé returned with fresh supplies at the end of May 1609.
On 18 June Champlain, accompanied by members of the Montagnais, left to explore the Iroquois country. Near the Rivière Sainte-Marie (Sainte-Anne), he met 200 to 300 Huron and Algonquin who had come to encourage him to lead a campaign with them against their Mohawk enemies [see Iroquet]. At the request of the Huron and Algonquin, he returned to the settlement (the Habitation de Québec) and then departed, heading west, on 28 June. Eleven Frenchmen accompanied him, including his old friend Gravé. On 1 July Gravé returned to Quebec to look after Tadoussac and the Habitation. Upon reaching the mouth of the River of the Iroquois, only about 60 First Nations members agreed to continue their journey alongside Champlain. When he arrived at the rapids at Chambly, which he could not cross in his bark, he was compelled to go on with two members of the French party in a canoe belonging to their allies; the other Europeans turned back. On 14 July the small band reached a majestic lake to which Champlain gave his name. Six days later they confronted the Mohawk at Ticonderoga (N.Y.). Champlain killed two of their chiefs with his musket and mortally wounded another Mohawk. For the Montagnais and Algonquin, this military operation was part of the alliance formed with the French in 1603. After returning to Tadoussac, Champlain embarked on 5 September for France, along with Gravé, having left Pierre de Chauvin de La Pierre in command at Quebec. He did not know at this time that a rivalry was beginning to brew south of Lake Champlain, where Hudson was exploring with a view to eventually establish a Dutch colony there.
Back at Honfleur on 13 Oct. 1609, Champlain went to Fontainebleau, where he gave a report of his mission to Dugua and Henri IV. As expected, the king had not renewed the individual trade monopoly, but Dugua was allowed to form a company with Rouen merchants who were prepared to finance the Habitation.
After a short 18-day crossing, Champlain arrived on 26 April 1610 at Tadoussac, leaving two days later for Quebec. For the second time First Nations allies involved him in war; they secured a new victory over the Mohawk at the entrance to the River of the Iroquois on 19 June. Champlain later entrusted Étienne Brûlé to the Algonquin chief Iroquet so that the young man could learn the language and become an interpreter. In exchange, and according to custom, the Huron Savignon was to make a journey to France. Champlain’s intervention in the valley of the River of the Iroquois would profoundly change the way of warfare between Indigenous nations because of the appearance of highly efficient weapons and French involvement in conflicts. He was probably not yet aware of the upheaval caused by his engagements against the Mohawk. Feeling reassured about the command of Quebec, which had been turned over to Jean de Godet Du Parc [see Claude de Godet Des Maretz], he departed on 8 August for Honfleur, arriving there on 27 September.
Other major events in the year 1610 marked a turning point in Champlain’s life. The assassination of Henri IV on 14 May henceforth deprived New France of unwavering support. During the reign of young Louis XIII, the court experienced deep internal divisions since the regent, Marie de Médicis, failed to establish her authority over the kingdom’s magnates. On December 30 another event occurred that perhaps had a connection to the death of Henri IV: Champlain and Helene Boullé had their marriage blessed at Saint-Germain-l’Auxerrois church in Paris on condition that it was not consummated for another two years. On the previous day the bridegroom had received 4,500 livres of the comfortable dowry of 6,000 livres specified in the marriage contract, which represented a valuable contribution to his enterprise. As well, the marriage made him part of a family close to those in power. Nicolas Boullé, Helene’s father, was generally described as secretary of the king’s privy chamber, but also as controller or bailiff of finances. Through this alliance the lieutenant of Quebec entered upper-middle-class financial circles, and this influential group would prove an effective source of support.
On 1 March 1611 Champlain sailed from Honfleur for Quebec, where he docked on 21 May, with the dual concerns of developing fur-trading networks and advancing exploration of the territory farther west. He and Savignon hastened to the rapids called Sault-Saint-Louis (Lachine rapids), arriving there seven days later. He travelled up and down the archipelago from the area he named Place Royale (Pointe-à-Callière), where he made his pied-à-terre during June and July. He named the island Saincte Elaine (Sainte-Hélène) in honour of his wife and met various First Nations inhabitants. One night a Huron contingent invited him to their territory, portending the diplomatic eclipse of the Montagnais to the benefit of the Huron. After another meeting Champlain succeeded in clearing the Sault-Saint-Louis rapids in a canoe, which gave him hope that he could further his explorations in this formidable craft, whose possibilities he appreciated more and more. He was surprised, however, by the small number of furs he was offered. With the intention of regaining his partners’ trust, Champlain cast himself in the role of mediator and proceeded to exchange intermediaries. Following brief sojourns at Quebec and Tadoussac, he departed on 11 August, heading once more for La Rochelle, where he dropped anchor on 10 September.
Disappointed with the meagre trade results, the Rouen associates decided to withdraw. Dugua bought their shares and sent men and supplies to New France in the spring of 1612. He then approached the La Rochelle merchants and authorized them to store their pelts at Quebec. Faced with the regent’s refusal to grant a new monopoly, Champlain met with other influential people at court: Chancellor Nicolas Brulart, the Marquis de Sillery, Maréchal Charles II de Brissac, and Pierre Jeannin, controller general of finance, all of whom were interested in the Atlantic expeditions and colonization. Lescarbot dedicated the second edition of his Histoire de la Nouvelle-France … (Paris, 1611–12) to Jeannin, who ensured that the Quebec company was made the responsibility of Charles de Bourbon, Comte de Soissons, governor of Normandy. On 27 Sept. 1612 the comte was granted a 12-year monopoly on trade in the St Lawrence and on 8 October was named the king’s lieutenant-general. Seven days later Champlain became his lieutenant, which was clearly a promotion since henceforth he reported directly to a prince of the blood royal. The Comte de Soissons died on 1 November. Twelve days later Marie de Médicis appointed Henri II de Bourbon, 3rd Prince de Condé, lieutenant-general of New France. According to the letters patent reproduced in Nouveaux documents sur Champlain et son époque, she granted him the trade monopoly with expanded responsibilities: he was to represent the king in New France, enforce the monopoly, carry out administrative duties, dispense justice, and defend, populate, and develop the colony through explorations that were “to go to the country of China.” He was also to build alliances with First Nations and “call them by the gentlest means that could be to the knowledge of God and the light of the Catholic, Apostolic and Roman faith, and establish the practice in them.” On 22 November the 3rd Prince de Condé, like his predecessor, placed his trust in Champlain and appointed him his lieutenant. In fact it was Champlain who had to implement this ambitious program since Condé would not be travelling to New France. In 1613 the publication of Les voyages du sieur de Champlain, Xaintongeois, capitaine ordinaire pour le roy, en la marine, covering 1604 to 1612 and accompanied by maps and drawings, confirmed Champlain’s reputation and justified his title. Thereafter he concentrated on his mission, of which three aspects were inseparable: searching for a route to China, establishing a colony, and Christianizing members of the First Nations.
Starting from Honfleur, Champlain once again crossed the Atlantic on one of Gravé’s ships (6 March–29 April 1613). On his arrival in Tadoussac he nailed the text of his mission to a post in the port, thus consolidating his authority, deterring possible competitors, and making his new duties clear. Stopping only briefly in Quebec, he hurried to meet his Indigenous suppliers, reaching the Sault-Saint-Louis rapids on 21 May. Unhappy at having waited for him in vain in 1612, they were few in number. He therefore decided to sail back up the Rivière du Nord with the Algonquins to retrieve the remaining pelts and, if possible, go as far as the northern sea, Hudson Bay. The account of Hudson’s voyage, published in Amsterdam in 1612 as Descriptio ac delineatio geographica detectionis freti, sive, transitus ad occasum, suprà tèrras Americanas, in Chinam atq́; Japonem ducturi …, caused a great stir. Champlain had learned of it during his time in France and was particularly interested in the map drawn by Hessel Gerritsz. It was Champlain’s main inspiration for the one he created at the end of that year; he made a new version after he returned to France in 1613. It also intensified his desire to reach the northern sea. He was accompanied by four Frenchmen, including the interpreters Thomas Godefroy and Nicolas de Vignau. The latter claimed to have gone there before and seen the wreck of Hudson’s boat. The Algonquin chief Tessouat, who was based on the island that Champlain named in his honour (now Île Morrison), raised doubts about de Vignau’s claims. The chief called him an impostor and succeeded in convincing Champlain. Yet the interpreter, who had wintered on Tessouat’s island in 1611, gave a plausible account. Vignau disappeared – and the exact truth with him. What is certain is that Tessouat strongly opposed accompanying the French voyageurs to the northern sea, to the country of those whom Champlain called the Nebicerini (Nippissing). The Algonquin were determined to safeguard their position at the head of the rapids, where a portage began, so as to continue their control of the trade between the west and the St Lawrence. For Champlain, their refusal meant the failure of his exploration project. After exchanging gifts, he set out, accompanied by one of Tessouat’s sons. They reached the Sault-Saint-Louis rapids on 7 June with a good cargo of pelts (retrieved along the way), arriving back at Tadoussac on 6 July. Not without difficulty, the alliance had once again been confirmed. Although Champlain had gone no farther than what he called Île des Algonquin (aux Allumettes), the route to the west – in which the French put so much hope and which they were to follow for two centuries – was henceforth open and would gradually lengthen during subsequent ventures. On 8 August he departed on a Breton ship and, thanks to favourable west winds, arrived at Saint-Malo on 26 August.
In view of the year’s good results, the merchants in Rouen and Saint-Malo committed themselves to Condé’s monopoly for a period of 11 years. The partnership agreement of the Compagnie de Canada, also called the Compagnie de Condé, was signed on 15 Nov. 1613. Champlain resumed his description of the “Quatriesme voyage” (which would be published in Les voyages du sieur de Champlain, Xaintongeois, capitaine ordinaire pour le roy, en la marine), providing the viceroy with an account of his explorations, trading, and alliances, and attaching an updated map. However, one part of his mandate – the evangelization of Indigenous peoples – had not yet been implemented. In the context of the strict counter-Reformation upheld by the queen regent, this objective could not be neglected. Through the assistance of Condé and the king’s secretary, Louis Houel, Champlain was accompanied by four Recollets, who were financed by the Compagnie de Canada, when he left Honfleur on 24 April 1615; they arrived in Tadoussac on 25 May. A month later, on 24 June, Fathers Denis Jamet and Joseph Le Caron said the first mass at the Rivière des Prairies; the following day, at Quebec, Fathers Jean Dolbeau and Pacifique Duplessis solemnly celebrated a religious service, followed by artillery fire. The colony took steps to implement its Christianization program in accordance with the wishes of the court, especially Marie de Médicis.
At the Sault-Saint-Louis rapids the Huron, and perhaps also the Algonquin, again appealed to Champlain to support their defence against the Mohawk, who were impeding movements between the Great Lakes and the St Lawrence River. Champlain, in agreement with Gravé, decided to take part in a military expedition to the Huron country, which would also afford him the opportunity to pursue his discoveries. Allied First Nations promised him 2,500 warriors, and with 13 Frenchmen, including Le Caron, they left at the end of June, not waiting for Champlain, who first had to return to Quebec. Very frustrated by the hasty departure of these men, whom he had not been able to prepare for his own military strategy, he in turn departed on 4 July with an interpreter, probably Brûlé, a servant, and 10 Indigenous people, using two canoes. As they had done in 1613, they travelled up the Rivière du Nord, reaching the Mattawa River by way of Lake Nipissing and the French River. They came to the great “lake of the Attigouautan” (Lake Huron), which Champlain also called “the gentle Sea,” as he would record in 1619 in Voyages et descouvertures faites en la Nouvelle France, depuis l’année 1615, jusques à la fin de l’année 1618. This was Huron territory. The population at the time numbered more than 22,000, divided among 18 to 25 villages of longhouses in an area of more than 560 square miles. Their geographical location, numbers, and organization gave the Huron such power that they could form a bulwark against the Iroquois nations seeking to use the northern communication route via Lake Nipissing and the Algonquin suppliers who travelled to the Rivière du Nord valley. On 1 August, at the height of summer, Champlain arrived in the Huron village of Otouacha (near Ontario’s Midland peninsula), where the other Frenchmen had arrived earlier. He described the area as “very beautiful” and “very pleasant.” The inhabitants fished, hunted game, tilled the soil, harvested corn and pumpkins, and picked the abundant fruit.
On 17 August all met at Cahiagué (northwest of Lake Simcoe) to enter Iroquois territory, taking this step on 1 September. Seven days later, a delegation of 12 Huron warriors, accompanied by Brûlé, enlisted Andaste (Susquehannah) allies. Members of Champlain’s expedition captured 11 Iroquois about nine miles from their village on 9 October. The next day, after crossing the eastern end of Lake Ontario and following the Oneida River, Champlain and his forces arrived at the southern end of Onondaga Lake in front of the enemy’s fort (where at the beginning of the 21st century the Destiny USA shopping mall in Syracuse, N.Y., would be located). The Onondaga were entrenched behind a stronghold of four successive stockades, each 30 feet high. Despite the withdrawal of the Andaste, which greatly reduced the number of warriors, the impatience of Champlain’s allies compelled him to attack the very next day. He used a European strategy for taking a fortress, but his allies, unfamiliar with the necessary discipline, were scattered and charged in disorder. In fact, he failed to impose manœuvres or enforce obedience to his commands. After three hours of confused fighting, the allies beat a retreat. Wounded in the leg by two arrows (one in his knee), Champlain had to be carried on a Huron’s back for a few days. The French considered the operation a total failure, not knowing that it heralded two decades of peace. In fact, the Onondaga, who had lost many men, did not attempt to seek revenge; they acknowledged the power of the Huron and were unwilling to confront the French. Instead, they conserved their energy with a view to forming a type of alliance with them and their allies. The Iroquois nations also had other plans: the growing presence of the Dutch to the southeast on the Hudson River opened up the prospect of profitable trade. A state of war would run counter to their interests.
On the return journey to Cahiagué (November–December) Champlain complained that he saw the Huron employ numerous tricks to extend the voyage so that the French would be unable to leave for Quebec before winter. Although annoyed, he ended up concluding (in Voyages et descouvertures) that “their plan was to keep me with my companions in their land, both for their safety, as they feared their enemies, and to hear what was taking place in their Councils, & assemblies.” To make the best use of the winter season, Champlain went hunting with his hosts, explored, and established alliances with other nations in the Great Lakes region, including those he called the Pétun (Tionontati) to the south of Nottawasaga Bay and the Cheveux-Relevés (Ottawa) to the south of Georgian Bay. In Voyages et descouvertures he would provide an excellent geographical description of the territory as well as a physical description of the people along Lake Huron and in what would become the province of Ontario. In other respects, the explorer learned nothing new about the route to the western sea; his allies remained fearful of venturing into enemy territory and scarcely went beyond the Great Lakes. On 20 May 1616 he finally left the Huron country with Le Caron and a Huron chief, Atironta, whom he called d’Arontal. At the end of June, Gravé, who had given him up for dead, enthusiastically greeted him at the Sault-Saint-Louis rapids. Having reached Quebec on 11 July, Champlain prepared to extend the Habitation and have wheat harvested to take to France. On 3 August it was time for his departure on Gravé’s ship from Tadoussac for Honfleur, which they reached on 10 September.
On his arrival Champlain heard news that once again might prove worrisome for his future: on the regent’s order, the 3rd Prince de Condé had been imprisoned nine days earlier. Maréchal Pons de Lauzières, Marquis de Thémines, who was responsible for his arrest, temporarily replaced him as viceroy as of 24 November and renewed Champlain’s position as lieutenant on 15 Jan. 1617. The court came under strong pressure from the rivals of the Compagnie de Canada, who hoped that it would lose its trade monopoly. Champlain left nonetheless: he made the voyage from Honfleur to Tadoussac between 11 March and 14 June, and at the beginning of July he reached Quebec together with a first family, that of Louis Hébert and Marie Rolet. The following summer the wedding of their daughter, Anne, to Étienne Jonquet was the first to be celebrated in the colony. Quebec’s approximately 50 inhabitants eked out a hard living. Worried by the court’s misgivings about maintaining a colony in North America, the lieutenant remained only a very short time: on 22 July he was back in Paris, where he and Helene Boullé signed the contract to hire Ysabel Terrier as a servant.
Once again Champlain had to prove the soundness of the enterprise. He completed his map of New France, dated 1616, based on his most recent explorations. Towards the end of 1617 or at the beginning of 1618 he presented a document to the king and another to the chamber of commerce, laying out a large-scale colonial plan likely to increase France’s influence and prestige. It encompassed the development of a large town at Quebec, the founding of other settlements, conversion of the First Nations, and the emigration of 300 French families, 300 soldiers, and 15 Recollets. He also emphasized diversification of economic activity, exploitation of local resources other than pelts, establishment of new industries, and pursuit of exploration towards the western sea and China. In so doing, on 12 March 1618 he succeeded in confirming the monopoly of the Compagnie de Canada and his job as lieutenant.
Departing from Honfleur on 24 May, Champlain and his brother-in-law Eustache Boullé arrived at Quebec on 27 June. Champlain again stayed a very short time, noting that the crops were doing well, and then went on to Trois-Rivières to try two Montagnais for the murder of two Frenchmen. The circumstances of the event are not completely clear [see Cherououny]. Champlain’s responsibilities as lieutenant demanded that he administer justice among the French colonists. To avoid alienating Indigenous loyalty, however, he decided to take no action against the alleged guilty parties. He then made another return journey from Tadoussac to Honfleur (30 July–28 Aug. 1618).
The Compagnie de Canada was grappling with the tactics of smugglers in La Rochelle and Brittany who were demanding free trade. Within the company, Catholics and Protestants debated the merits of colonization and the establishment of Catholicism. Yet on 21 December Champlain succeeded in obtaining the associates’ signatures on an agreement to provide transportation and support to 80 people going to Quebec. As well, three days later the king provided him with an annual pension of 600 livres. With the balance of 1,500 livres from his wife’s dowry, which he received on 14 Jan 1619, Champlain prepared to resume his responsibilities as the viceroy’s lieutenant and to sail to Quebec accompanied by Helene. The partners in Rouen, however, prevented their departure. Incited by merchant Daniel Boyer, they reproached Champlain for focusing on exploration, settlement, and evangelization to the detriment of trade and wanted to install Gravé as commander at Quebec, in the hope that he would ensure a better return on their investments. Champlain went back to the king’s council and pleaded his case; on 18 July the decision of the council of state, reproduced in Nouveaux documents sur Champlain et son époque, stated that he “will command being present in the habitation of Quebec and the country New France, and that in his absence the one who will be designated by the defenders to be in command will be obliged to accept the appointment of the aforementioned Champlain.”
During the long year of negotiating and waiting, Champlain developed his Voyages et descouvertures, a paean to the riches of the land and the attitude of the population towards the Christian faith in one of the regions most attractive for extending the power of the king and the glory of God. Concerns regarding higher authority in the colony remained. The 3rd Prince de Condé, freed on 20 Oct. 1619, regained his rights and privileges on 9 November, and thus Maréchal Pons de Lauzières was denied his claim to the title of viceroy of New France. However, on 25 Feb. 1620 the prince sold the position of viceroy to his brother-in-law Henri II, Duc de Montmorency and admiral of France, for 30,000 livres. To Champlain’s great relief, Montmorency confirmed his lieutenancy on 8 March. After a sojourn of almost two years in France, the commander of Quebec left Honfleur with his wife and their servant in May 1620. They endured a rough crossing of about two months and went ashore at Quebec around the middle of July.
Champlain was fully resolved to advance the settlement program, which traders, influenced by religious rivalries, strongly opposed. He began a complete renovation of the Habitation, which was falling into ruin, and the construction of Fort Saint-Louis on the cliff of Cap Diamant. The purpose of this defensive structure was, above all, to demonstrate the lieutenant’s authority over the Habitation, which included a warehouse for pelts. On 8 Nov. 1620, under pressure from Norman merchants, the Dweuc de Montmorency determined that the Compagnie de Canada had not fulfilled its obligation to populate New France and withdrew its trading monopoly, awarding it to Ézéchiel de Caën, a Catholic bourgeois merchant and shipowner [see Émery de Caën], and his nephew Guillaume de Caën, son of a Dieppe Protestant shipowner established in Rouen. In return, the de Caëns partially financed the office of viceroy, which Montmorency had acquired from the 3rd Prince of Condé. Champlain heard this news in mid May 1621 when a small vessel arrived in New France.
After the de Caëns landed in early summer, the disputes between the Compagnie de Caën and the Compagnie de Canada increased. Following a council of state decision, both companies found themselves obliged to trade in the same territory for the rest of the year. Hoping to counter his powerful Protestant adversaries, the commander of Quebec gathered the French habitants, who numbered about 60, on 18 August, and on the Recollets’ initiative a list of remonstrances was compiled for the king’s attention. It demanded the exclusion of Protestants, the foundation of a seminary for First Nations, reinforced powers for dispensing justice, improvements to the defence system, and an increase in Champlain’s salary. The Recollet Georges Le Baillif went to France, where he presented the list to the king together with other documents that added to the weight of the charges against the de Caëns and their associates, which displeased everyone [see Louis Hébert]. In the summer of 1622 Champlain ended up agreeing to the merger of the Compagnie de Canada with the de Caëns’ company, especially since their delegate at Quebec and principal agent that winter was Gravé, his long-time friend. The next summer Gravé returned to France and Champlain assumed sole control. Wasting no time, he ordered that a farm be established at Cap Tourmente, where he harvested 2,000 bales of hay and considered raising cattle. At Quebec he reconstructed the Habitation (its largest residential building would almost be finished in August 1624) and linked it to Fort Saint-Louis by a path.
This was Champlain’s longest stay in New France – more than four consecutive years. Besides dealing with set-backs with the trading companies, in July 1624 he saw a truce reached between the Indigenous allies of the French and the Mohawk [see Miristou] – a matter for satisfaction. Although he was not the architect of this accord, he had strongly encouraged it, particularly by means of giving gifts to the two Mohawk received at Quebec in June 1622; he was convinced that peace among members of the First Nations would foster the colony’s stability and development. In his diplomatic initiatives he may have received some help from his wife, who, according to Les chroniques de l’Ordre des Ursulines, spent her long days at Quebec “understanding & speaking passably well the barbaric language of the Savages & very soon she taught their wives and little children to pray to God.” But Helene Boullé, “in the prime of her life, in a place worse than a Prison, & deprived of many things necessary to life,” left with her husband for Tadoussac on 21 August to sail for Dieppe, where their ship docked on 1 October. She would never return to New France.
The Duc de Montmorency renounced his vice-regal title in favour of Henri de Lévis, Duc de Ventadour, who on 15 Feb. 1625 confirmed Champlain as lieutenant, with his brother-in-law Boullé to assist him with his responsibilities. In April, in accordance with the evangelization program, the new viceroy sent five Jesuits, including Charles Lalemant as superior and Fathers Énemond Massé and Jean de Brébeuf, to reinforce the Recollets’ work. The following year they were granted land along the St Lawrence River and the Rivière Saint-Charles, as had been the case when the Recollets arrived in 1615. Father Lalemant, who was close to the viceroy, became the lieutenant’s efficient, faithful partner in governing New France. Well informed about the colony’s precarious situation, he strongly recommended that it be freed from the merchants’ influence [see Philibert Noyrot]. A step in this direction was made in October 1626 when the duties of grand master, head, and superintendent general of navigation and commerce of France were allocated to Armand Jean du Plessis, Cardinal de Richelieu, who had been the strong man on the king’s council for almost two years. Subsequently, with the resignation of the Duc de Ventadour, Cardinal Richelieu was the sole master of New France and Champlain was his lieutenant there. On 29 April 1627 he abolished the Compagnie de Caën and created the Compagnie de la Nouvelle-France, intended to gather “cent associez [one hundred associates],” and hence gave it the name by which it would commonly be known. According to the Édict du roy pour l’establissement de la Compagnie de la Nouvelle France, signed at La Rochelle the following year, Cardinal Richelieu had to succeed in “establishing a colony of native French, Catholics of one & the other sex; considering that it was the one & only way to advance in a few years, the conversion of these peoples, & magnify the French name to the glory of God, & [the] reputation of this crown.ˮ Like the previous companies, the new organization, of which Champlain became a member on 14 Jan. 1628, held the monopoly on trade. In return, the associates, like their predecessors, had to use appropriate means to convert First Nations individuals and ensure that Canada received several hundred French Catholic emigrants every year. The edict also stipulated that the Indigenous people who had converted to Christianity would be acknowledged as “naturels François [naturalized French]” and would be able to live in France.
Upon his return to Quebec on 5 July 1626, Champlain had discovered his 60 habitants in utter destitution, without replenishment of supplies of foodstuffs or items obtained by trade: the Compagnie de Caën had not brought enough to sustain them. Consequently, work continued on Fort Saint-Louis and the farm at Cap Tourmente [see Foucher] to at least ensure the settlers’ survival. In July 1627 the Mohawk killed a French emissary, Pierre Magnan, as well as Cherououny, after they and others were dispatched to Iroquois territory with the intention of enforcing the truce between the Mohawk and the Montagnais. The Montagnais attributed the failure of the negotiations to the French, whom they had come to distrust, and slew two of them in October [see Miristou]. Trying to avoid an increase in tensions, Champlain consulted the Montagnais chiefs to reach an agreement on settling the affair and imprisoned the alleged culprit.
In spring 1628, after a very harsh winter, Quebec waited in vain for the arrival of supplies. It was not yet known that Charles I, after declaring war on France the previous year, had authorized the Kirke brothers, English corsairs, to seize New France. Neither was it known that in July 1627 the English army, led by the 1st Duke of Buckingham, had landed on Île de Ré intending to take over La Rochelle, France’s bastion of Protestantism. Richelieu had besieged the town and repelled the offensive in 1628 – a disaster for the English army. The decision to attack Quebec was very likely a riposte by Protestant England for its defeat at La Rochelle.
A Protestant captain from Dieppe, Jacques Michel, guided the Kirkes’ fleet of three ships. The English were at Tadoussac in early July 1628 and, having reached Cap Tourmente, they burned down the farm. On 10 July, using Basque prisoners as intermediaries at Quebec, they presented Champlain with a summons demanding the community’s surrender. The commander refused. Feigning to have the power to meet the aggressor, he prepared for combat, but the Kirkes chose to isolate and starve Quebec. On 17 and 18 July the brothers captured, in the Gulf of St Lawrence, four ships with 400 passengers (including recently recruited colonists) belonging to the Compagnie des Cent-Associés and took them to England [see Claude Roquemont de Brison].
The winter of 1628–29 was particularly difficult for Quebec’s inhabitants, who were deprived of both supplies and farm produce. To reduce the number of mouths to be fed, on 26 June Champlain sent colonists to the Gaspé so that they could leave for France on cod-fishing boats. On 19 July four English vessels appeared off Cap de Levy (Pointe De Lévy). Thomas and Lewis Kirke sent a clerk to present Champlain with a new demand. In the Histoire du Canada (Paris, 1636), the Recollet brother Gabriel Sagard reported that the clerk informed Quebec’s commander that a peace treaty between France and England had been ratified at Susa, Italy, on 24 April. The Kirkes refused Champlain’s demand for more time, and, lacking the military capabilities and provisions to resist, he ceded the Habitation. He and Gravé, who was ill and assisted by his grandson, François de Godet Des Maretz, signed the capitulation. To avoid censure, Champlain asked for an inventory, which would be useful if Quebec had to be surrendered and might allow him to eventually justify himself. Taking with him only his personal effects, he left Quebec on 24 July aboard an English ship bound for Tadoussac. The next day the Kirke brothers seized Émery de Caën’s supply ship at the Rivière Malle Baye (Malbaie). The flotilla, which was transporting French refugees, including Jesuits and Recollets, left Tadoussac on 14 September and arrived at Plymouth, England, on 18 October, remaining in harbour for five or six days before docking at Dover on the 27th.
About 20 French people were still in Canada, the Kirke brothers having appealed to some of them to maintain relations with members of the First Nations. They included the interpreter Nicolas Marsolet de Saint-Aignan, the cartwright Pierre Raye, the clerk Olivier Le Baillif, and Brûlé. Others preferred not to abandon their fur-trade interests or else no longer had a reason to return to France. The family of Guillaume Couillard and his wife, Guillemette Hébert, were Quebec’s only household with children. The Couillard family looked after Espérance and Charité, two of the three young Montagnais girls who had been entrusted to Champlain the previous year to receive a French education. According to Sagard, Foi, the third girl, returned to live with her people. Olivier Le Jeune, a youth of Guinean or Madagascan origin who was likely sold as a slave to Le Baillif by one of the Kirke brothers, also stayed.
Once the other French refugees had returned to France, Champlain, who was free to go where he pleased, went to London on 29 October, where he presented the original document of the surrender of the settlement to the French ambassador, Charles de l’Aubespine, Marquis de Châteauneuf. He insisted that the document, signed on 19 July 1629 – more than two months after the Treaty of Susa – clearly showed that the conquest was illegal. It was a complex affair, however, as it represented only one episode in the Thirty Years’ War (1618–48), which involved many European countries. Every victory and defeat was entered into the balance of negotiations, including, in Acadia, the capture of Pentagouet (Castine, Maine), Port-Royal, and Cape Breton Island [see Charles Daniel] by the troops of William Alexander, Earl of Stirling, between 1626 and 1629. Realizing that the talks, which were just beginning, would drag on, Champlain returned to France at the beginning of December 1629 and repeatedly approached King Louis XIII, Richelieu, and the Compagnie des Cent-Associés. The next year he submitted a report to the king that recalled his main arguments of 1617 and 1618, describing the usefulness of New France and adding that it was necessary to develop agriculture to avoid too great a dependence on the mother country. France and England continued their negotiations, but it was only in July 1631 that Charles I ordered the Company of Adventurers to Canada to leave the country. The finale did not come about until 29 March 1632: in the Treaty of Saint-Germain-en-Laye, reproduced in the Collection de manuscrits, England undertook to “return and restore … all the places occupied in New France, la Cadie and Canada … in the same state that they were when taken.ˮ
On 20 April 1632 Louis XIII granted the position of lieutenant-general of New France to Commander Isaac de Razilly. As a result, nearly three years after the capture of Quebec, Champlain felt discredited by his superiors. His plans were not considered political priorities for the kingdom; France’s relations with other European states loomed larger than dreams of empire in North America. For this reason Champlain still sought to demonstrate the importance of French settlement on that continent and the value of consolidating the foundations won with such difficulty by his skill and perseverance. To please Richelieu, he resumed writing the account of all his explorations; he preceded it with a historical retrospective of what the French had achieved since 1504 and ended with a report on the most recent years. He included an unpublished map of New France and the “Traitté de la marine et du devoir d’un bon marinier.” Les voyages de la Nouvelle France occidentale was released in Paris in 1632 by three publishers: Claude Collet, Louis Sevestre, and Pierre Le Mur. That year Richelieu sent Champlain to resupply Fort Sainte-Anne on Cape Breton Island. Razilly took official command of Port-Royal towards the middle of December, and during the next three years he made genuine development possible in Acadia.
Departing from Dieppe and accompanied by 150 colonists, Champlain made his last crossing to Quebec in 1633 (23 March–23 May). In a commission signed on 21 March 1629, he had received from the “Intendants & Directors of the Compagnie de la Nouvelle France” the title “Command[er] in the service of His Majesty, in the absence of His Lordship the Cardinal in the said country of New France.” (The document was reproduced in Les voyages de la Nouvelle France occidentale.) The title, suspended after Quebec was seized, was finally granted once more in 1632. Through his lieutenant Charles Du Plessis-Bochart, Émery de Caën restored to him the Habitation and the command of the colony, which with the new arrivals numbered 227 habitants. Champlain had the Notre-Dame-de-la-Recouvrance chapel built and he renewed contact with Indigenous allies, some of whom had traded with the English during his absence. In fact, Champlain’s return to Quebec coincided with a fresh outbreak of hostilities. In June three Frenchmen were killed in a Mohawk raid on two French boats near Trois-Rivières. They attacked various places in the St Lawrence valley considered to be within their sphere of influence. To end the continuing threats, Champlain appealed to Cardinal Richelieu for the means to lead a major offensive against the Mohawk. The request for this military force was never approved. The Mercure françois would publish (1636) “Relation du voyage du sieur de Chãplain en Canada” in about the year 1633; it was intended for the public and attributed to Champlain and Paul Le Jeune, the Jesuit superior at Quebec. It consisted of a detailed report of the crossing to Acadia, Tadoussac, and Quebec, followed by an account of collecting pelts in various locations. It seems that the authors wanted to set out the terms of trade and show the difficulties experienced by the Compagnie des Cent-Associés in confronting English and Dutch competition.
In 1632, following the cardinal’s wishes, the Jesuits returned to Quebec to pursue the work of conversion there. They exercised significant social, and indeed economic and political, influence over the colony’s local government. A first school, founded in 1635, became the Collège Saint-Charles-Garnier, a well-known secondary school, at the beginning of the 21st century. That autumn, 18 missionaries were distributed among the French outposts from Acadia to Huronia. In all, some 40 Recollet, Capuchin, and Jesuit missionaries have worked in Canada since 1603.
The 1634 arrival of about a hundred immigrants, including several families, brought Champlain “new courage,” as he put it in a letter to Richelieu (reproduced in the Works published by Henry Percival Biggar). As well, a settlement was established at Trois-Rivières, where the Jesuits founded a mission [see M. Laviolette]. Champlain felt confident once again in the willingness of the Compagnie des Cent-Associés to fulfill its obligations not only to trade but also to populate and evangelize. Strengthened by this fresh start for New France, Champlain strove to build the colony.
As French numbers began to increase in Canada, the human landscape of Quebec and the surrounding area was completely altered. Robert Giffard de Moncel, a Perche apothecary and master surgeon already settled at Quebec, started an immigration movement: he recruited, at his own expense, several hundred colonists, mainly from Normandy. This initial group would gradually take in future immigrants on the basis of shared language and customs. Giffard settled the habitants in the vicinity of his Beauport seigneury, particularly on the Beaupré shore [see Mathurin Gagnon].
French immigration continued while other Europeans settled in northeastern North America in far greater numbers. Since the 1620 arrival of about one hundred Puritans on the Mayflower from near Plymouth, English settlements had multiplied on the coast south of Acadia. In 1625 the powerful Dutch West India Company founded New Holland at the mouth of the Hudson River, and by the early 1630s New England and New Holland already had several thousand inhabitants. The epidemics of 1634–40, linked to the large numbers of foreign, asymptomatic carriers of the virus, decimated the First Nations of the American northeast. Champlain, pleased with the arrival of new French families, would not see the demographic collapse of both allied and enemy populations or the consequences of the English colonies’ growing threat to New France.
Consolidating the colony entailed mapping it, and naming places was also a way to lay claim to territory. Champlain had been the first European voyageur to make detailed charts of some 2,670 miles of the North American coastline, from Cape Cod to the island of Newfoundland and from the Gulf of St Lawrence to the Great Lakes. His maps, based on careful personal observations and borrowings from other navigators (including Hudson) and completed thanks to information obtained from Indigenous peoples, are surprisingly accurate. They were used by the French court, which disseminated them widely, especially during diplomatic negotiations in London, and were reproduced in Dutch, English, and French publications over several decades. Pierre Duval published a more detailed version of the 1616 map with the title Le Canada faict par le Sr de Champlain … (Paris, 1653); he later modified and reprinted it a number of times up until 1677. Others, such as Jean Boisseau, published the 1632 map with few changes and without acknowledging the cartographer.
In October 1635 Champlain was suffering from paralysis and felt his strength failing. In his will, drawn up on 17 November, he left all his property in France to his wife and distributed what he owned in Quebec to his family and friends, favouring the Jesuits and the Notre-Dame-de-la-Recouvrance chapel. In Paris, Helene Boullé registered the will (22 Nov. 1636), which was subsequently contested by Marie Camaret, Champlain’s first cousin. She would obtain his shares in the Compagnie de la Nouvelle-France and a private company on 6 Sept. 1639.
Attended by Father Lalemant, Champlain died on 25 Dec. 1635. His body was buried temporarily in an unknown location and later carried to a chapel that was added to the Notre-Dame-de-la-Recouvrance chapel and named after him. The original chapel burned down in 1640, was rebuilt, and then disappeared at the beginning of the 1670s. According to some, all the remains were transferred for interment beneath the new parish church, known at the beginning of the 21st century as the Notre-Dame de Québec basilica; it has also frequently undergone major work through the centuries. Despite painstaking archaeological research, it is still unlikely that Champlain’s remains will one day be found.
At the end of his life Champlain was dedicated to the Catholic religion alone. It had not always been the case. During his first voyages, made under Henri IV’s rule, there was a desire for reconciliation between Catholics and Protestants. At Sainte-Croix and Port-Royal the expedition included both a Catholic priest and a Protestant pastor; the leader, Dugua, was a Huguenot, as were many other colonists.
Political interests were a priority and religious and business matters combined to justify colonization. France wanted above all to conquer others who would have riches, not barren territories, to contribute to the kingdom. For Champlain, the way to increase New France’s population was not through mass immigration, but by baptizing Indigenous peoples, thus giving them French nationality. In the 1633 Jesuit Relations, Le Jeune recounts that Champlain dreamed of a future in which “our sons will marry your daughters, & and we will become one people.” For the French authorities intermarriage was a means of limiting French emigration to the colony and ensuring the loyalty of First Nations allies. As well, the enduring influence of the counter-Reformation meant that territory under French authority had to display whole-hearted commitment to the Catholic Church – an objective undertaken by the Compagnie des Cent-Associés and the Jesuits under the direction of Cardinal Richelieu. Champlain could not go against these conditions.
It could be inferred from these facts that political and colonial interests dictated Champlain’s relations with First Nations. It is fair to say that the objective of establishing a prosperous French enterprise in America had to include the participation of the inhabitants who were already there. Although some historians have recently suggested that support for the project involved pressure or exploitation, this was not necessarily the case. Contact between Indigenous peoples and Europeans had begun over a hundred years before the founding of Quebec. Throughout the 16th century tens of thousands of fishermen had visited the shores of the St Lawrence River and its gulf, and from the very first encounters they engaged in bartering European articles for pelts, victuals, medicines, and assistance with various tasks. Champlain was well aware of the need for such exchanges between the two groups, constantly recalling them in his arguments in New France’s favour. His perspective on Indigenous peoples living at Tadoussac in 1603 was not entirely new, although he was the first French voyageur to describe their customs so carefully. He observed them with the cordiality, often tinged with paternalism, of an entrepreneur approaching an indispensable partner. He found it difficult to accept some of their practices, such as sexual freedom and harsh treatment of prisoners of war, and he protested against both in vain. However, the two sides tended to stand together. First Nations had also learned much from associating with Europeans for a century and were well aware of their intentions. If there had been an attempt at French domination over the territory’s inhabitants, it had failed, at least under Champlain’s command: Indigenous peoples had the advantage of being on their own land and they generally succeeded in imposing their demands in a partnership from which both parties believed they benefited. As a result, there were many times when Champlain had to change not only his own plans but also those of the French court to accommodate those of the First Nations. Mutual respect developed, the chiefs knowing full well how to call their French allies to order when the Europeans were slow to fulfil their commitments. From mutual successes and socialization were born trust and esteem. Champlain’s view of his associates was admittedly subjective and he was sometimes distant, but he was always loyal to them: they were the foundation of the French edifice in America.
About the man himself – all that is really known is what Champlain revealed in his writings, and it appears that his life became that of his New France venture. Although a number of drawings and paintings attempt to depict him, there exists no portrait executed during his lifetime except a silhouette drawn by an engraver, showing him in battle against the Mohawk in 1609. He must have had extraordinary physical stamina to endure, apparently with no serious problems, about two dozen Atlantic crossings as well as military and exploratory expeditions undertaken over thousands of miles.
To discern a few aspects of Champlain’s character, it is necessary to read between the lines of his numerous writings, the author being very discreet about himself and his private concerns. His accounts of his voyages – discourses intended to confirm the validity of New France – took on the appropriate appearance of an objective report. This approach did not prevent the writer from emphasizing as much as possible his own role in the enterprise while occasionally remaining silent about the contributions of his companions, especially those of Gravé, who had introduced him to the country. This behaviour, assured and pragmatic, also revealed a definite authority and stature, which were doubtless necessary for a leader undertaking such a task with so much skill and tenacity.
As for devoting his entire life to establishing France in America – one might say, mission accomplished. Without ever losing sight of this objective, Champlain first sought, from Acadia to Cape Cod and towards the Great Lakes, the best place to establish a base for commerce and French settlement. Hoping to cross the continent as far as the western sea and thereby reach China, he clung obstinately to Cap Diamant despite the obstacles of climate, the enormous expanse of territory, competition from other European traders, and the particular conditions of living with Indigenous peoples. Although Henri IV was a fervent supporter of France’s expansion of influence, those who followed him in exercising power constantly needed to be persuaded to continue on that path. Champlain had to convince them. He explored, mapped, and left his mark with place names that were inspired as much by Indigenous peoples as by the French. His accounts revealed the beauty of nature, reported on inhabitants’ lives in their complexity, and foresaw rich mineral resources and many possibilities for development. The wheels had been set in motion: France and the French settled permanently in America and laid the foundations of structures on which was built a “New France [,] or Canada.”
Samuel de Champlain published four works in Paris that constitute the essential source of information about his life: Des sauvages … (); Les voyages du sieur de Champlain, Xaintongeois, capitaine ordinaire pour le roy, en la marine (1613); Voyages et descouvertures faites en la Nouvelle France, depuis l’année 1615, jusques à la fin de l’année 1618 (1619); and Les voyages de la Nouvelle France occidentale, dicte Canada, faits par le Sr de Champlain … & toutes les descouvertes qu’il a faites en ce païs depuis l’an 1603, jusques en l’an 1629 (1632). In addition, he probably wrote, with Paul Le Jeune, “Relation du voyage du sieur de Chãplain en Canada,” Mercure françois … (Paris), 19 (1636): 803–67.
The many modern scholarly editions of these texts provide valuable, complementary information about the populations, individuals, events, and places mentioned by Champlain. Among them are the works of Éric Thierry, who edited, in contemporary French, Champlain’s accounts of his travels (all published in Quebec City): Les fondations de l’Acadie et de Québec, 1604–1611 (2008); À la rencontre des Algonquins et des Hurons, 1612–1619 (2009); Au secours de l’Amérique française, 1632 (2011); Espion en Amérique, 1598–1603 (2013); and Les œuvres complètes de Champlain (2v., ). See also: Œuvres (Laverdière); Works (Biggar); Des sauvages, Alain Beaulieu et Réal Ouellet, édit. (Montréal, 1993); and Samuel de Champlain before 1604: “Des sauvages” and other documents related to the period, ed. C. E Heidenreich and K. J. Ritch (Toronto, 2010). Other published sources include: [Marie de Pommereuse], “La vie de la mère Helene Boullé, dite de S. Augustin, fondatrice & religieuse Ursuline de Meaux,” in Les chroniques de l’Ordre des Ursulines (3v. en 2, Paris, 1673), 3: 408–17; Coll. de manuscrits relatifs à la Nouv.-France; and Public Arch. of Can., Nouveaux documents sur Champlain et son époque, Robert Le Blant et René Baudry, édit. (Ottawa, 1967). The archival and manuscript sources are scarce and scattered, the most important being: Arch. Départementales, Charente-Maritime (La Rochelle, France), “État civil,” La Rochelle, temple Saint-Yon, 13 août 1574: archives.charente-maritime.fr/archives-en-ligne/consulter-documents-numerises (consulted 13 July 2018); and Arch. Nationales (Centre d’arch. de Paris), MC/RS//281, 29 déc. 1610; MC/RS//282, 22 nov. 1636. The document “Donación de Guillermo Elena a Samuel de Champlain, 1601 [no.1512, ff.256v–259v; f.284, Notario Marcos de Rivera, 1601]” (Gift from Guillermo Elena to Samuel de Champlain [no.1512, ff.256v–259v; f.284, notary Marcos de Rivera, 1601]) is held by the Archivo Histórico Provincial de Cadix, Spain, and transcribed in Samuel de Champlain before 1604 …, 178–91. The innumerable studies on Champlain and his time are often of questionable importance, yet some of the most recent enrich not only the knowledge of his work, but also that of the territory and its inhabitants. Extensive use has been made of several sources: collective works and papers of symposia and study sessions in which the reader will find further reflections on this period of the exploration and birth of French America: Library and Arch. Can. (Ottawa), R11577-4-2; Historical atlas of Canada (3v., Toronto, 1987–93), 1 (From the beginning to 1800, ed. R. C. Harris, 1987); [Jean Boisseau], Description de la Nouvelle France ou sont remarquées les diverses habitations des François, despuis la premiere descouverte jusques a present recuillie et dressée sur diverses relations modernes, 1643 (Paris, 1643); Champlain: the birth of French America, ed. Raymonde Litalien and Denis Vaugeois, trans. Käthe Roth (Sillery [Québec], 2004); Champlain ou les portes du Nouveau-Monde: cinq siècles d’échanges entre le centre-ouest français et l’Amérique du Nord, xvie–xxe siècles, sous la dir. de Mickaël Augeron et Dominique Guillemet (La Crèche, France, 2004); Paul Cohen, “La vie rêvée des empires: Amérindiens et Européens en Nouvelle-France selon David Hackett Fischer,” Bull. d’hist. politique (Montréal), 27 (2018–19), no.2: 34–68; De la Seine au Saint-Laurent avec Champlain, sous la dir. d’Annie Blondel-Loisel et al. (Paris, 2005); Michel De Waele, “‘Une loi, une foi, un roi’: tolérance et concorde en Nouvelle-France à l’époque d’Henri IV,” Bull. d’hist. politique, 27, no.2: 15–33; D. H. Fischer, Champlain’s dream (New York and Toronto, 2008); René Lepelley, Dictionnaire étymologique des noms de communes de Normandie (Condé-sur-Noireau et Caen, France, 1993); Le Nouveau Monde et Champlain, sous la dir. de Guy Martinière et Didier Poton (Paris, 2008); Québec, Champlain, le monde, sous la dir. de Michel De Waele et Martin Pâquet (Québec, 2008); Éric Thierry, La France de Henri IV en Amérique du Nord: de la création de l’Acadie à la fondation de Québec (Paris, 2008); B. [G.] Trigger, The children of Aataentsic: a history of the Huron people to 1660 (2v., Montreal, 1976); Marcel Trudel, Histoire de la Nouvelle-France (6 tomes en 7v., Montréal, 1955–99), 1 (Les vaines tentatives, 1524–1603), 2 (Le comptoir, 1604–1627), 3 (La Seigneurie des Cent-Associés, 1627–1663), tome 1 (Les événements) and tome 2 (La société); and When the French were here … and they’re still here: proceedings of the Samuel de Champlain Quadricentennial Symposium, ed. Nancy Nahra (Burlington, Vt, 2010).
© 1966–2023 University of Toronto/Université Laval
Cite This Article
Raymonde Litalien, “CHAMPLAIN, SAMUEL DE,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 1, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed May 31, 2023, http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/champlain_samuel_de_1E.html.
The citation above shows the format for footnotes and endnotes according to the Chicago manual of style (16th edition). Information to be used in other citation formats:
|Author of Article:||Raymonde Litalien|
|Title of Article:||CHAMPLAIN, SAMUEL DE|
|Publication Name:||Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 1|
|Publisher:||University of Toronto/Université Laval|
|Year of publication:||1966|
|Year of revision:||2023|
|Access Date:||May 31, 2023|