Samuel de Champlain
Samuel de champlain's early life
Samuel de Champlain was born around 1570, in Brouage, a small port town in the province of Saintonge, on the western coast of France. Although Champlain wrote extensively of his voyages and later life, little is known of his childhood. He was likely born a Protestant, but converted to Catholicism as a young adult.
his impacts on the world
He began exploring North America in 1603, establishing the city of Quebec in the northern colony of New France, and mapping the Atlantic coast and the Great Lakes, before settling into an administrative role as the de facto governor of New France in 1620.
It was during this trip to Tadoussac and beyond that Champlain was to consider the advantages of Acadia. Not much was known of the American seaboard below the eastern shores of present day Nova Scotia. It was known to slope westward and I imagine that explorers like Champlain thought that following the American coast, southwest, might lead to the great western sea and the oriental riches beyond; at least it might lead to a shorter route to the lands and seas (Great Lakes) of which the Indians spoke and which they said was to the west of Hochelaga. (No one anticipated the eastern barrier as represented by the Alleghenies or more generally the great distances involved.) What Champlain likely concluded was that explorations in the southern parts of Acadia may lead to the discovery of a route to Asia, if not directly, then overland. Going up the St. Lawrence seem to lead to the thicker part of the continental barrier; and to Champlain's geographical eyes the continent seem to thin out as one went south. Besides: sought-after metals and mines were reported to exist in the southern parts of Acadia; and, the peltry trade could be carried on at the mouths of the endless number of rivers that flowed to the eastern seaboard of Acadia, a land, which, in 1600, included the shores of the present day State of Maine.
his first voyage
Champlain's first substantial voyage, one to Spain, was with his uncle. This voyage led him to be on a chartered French vessel which went to the "West Indians and New Spain with the annual fleet." On his return to France two years later, the 32 year old Champlain was to link up with Francis Grave, Sieur du Pont (Pontgrave), a merchant, fur trader, and a citizen of St. Malo. The two of them, Pontgrave and Champlain, in 1603, voyaged together up the "riviere de Canada." Champlain, it would appear had no official position in this trading voyage. Pontgrave's business was at the trading post which had been established at Tadoussac. Leaving Pontgrave to his business, Champlain explored. He went "12 leagues" up the Saguenay; and then further up the St. Lawrence as far as Hochelaga (Montreal) passing on his way a place which in time he was to spend most all of his life (Quebec). Before the summer was out, Champlain returned to Tadoussac and embarked with Pontgrave for the return trip to France.
some of my relatives