Exploring Nouveau Monde

-Surya Ramakrishnan-

l'histoire des explorateurs (History of the Explorers)

The French exploration was first led by Jaques Cartier and his three voyages. Through an encounter with the natives (an Iroquois word for settlement) , Cartier decided to name the land Canada. As of 1534, Francis the first commissioned Cartier on his first voyage to find the northwest passage to East Asia, but ended up landing in the Northeast passage in the Americas. Going through present day Newfoundland, Cartier coasted into what is now Quebec and encountered the Native Americans. But as a consolation prize, to his relentless failure for gold, he kidnapped the two sons of the chief and brought them back to France. Once civilization spured in "New France" Cartier and his men try to go on a wild goose hunt for the fabled gold, and never found it. The original excursion to the new world resulted in the conquering of Florida and Louisiana, connecting to Canada through the Mississippi river.


As stated in the last paragraph, the French had much authority in North America. By 1603, Newfoundland was completely colonized. By 1673, Quebec and parts of Montreal were claimed in the name of La France. As of 1741, France had encroached onto what is now the United States and conquered most of the Midwest, in between the Appalachian and Rocky Mountains. Apart from this the French had also conquered some Caribbean islands and what is now French Guiana.
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Las Importance (Significance)

The significance of French Colonization affects the overall history of the Americas in the later centuries. The vast block of French influence left a mark on Canadian soil and the Mississippi delta. One of the major effects of this expansion caused the French and Indian war or Seven Years' War. The second effect was both the French revolution and the Haitian revolution. The third major influence was the Louisiana Purchase.

By 1741, France had claimed most of its land and so had Britain. With the British addicted onto the ideology of manifest destiny, they decided to conquer in a westward fashion. France also thirsty for colonization, went to look for more land in the Ohio River valley, clashing with the British in Virginia. The French succeeded against the British in 1754 to 1756 with the help of the Indians, but the tides turned in 1757. William Pitt the upcoming general in the British empire, paid the Prussians to help him in the bloody war. This nearly tripled the British troops and by 1758 the war was in the Britain's favor. The British closed in on the province of Quebec, then Montreal, until the 1763, when the war resolved into the proclamation of 1763, splitting the previous french colony into Louisiana following up the western side of the Mississippi river. The significance of the French Colonization affecting the Seven Years' War, created a lot of tensions between the British and the French. This cause the eventual completion of manifest destiny (Americans) The shrinking of the French powers influenced mostly the Canadian and the Louisianan territory rather than the rest of the French American territory. This resulted in the Cajun idea in the Mississippi Delta and the Canadian tradition resembling that of France. The French and British still had foreboding tension that would soon manifest into the industrialize era into the scramble for Africa and the industrialization in India and East Asia.

As a result of these tension many reforms and thoughts were exercised in France. The tension between the British as well as the monarchical, aristocratic oppression in the early 16th century caused a sturdy foundation for the French Revolution to take place. The significance of the French encroaching on the Canadian Plain and Mississippi River Valley gave an overwhelming paranoia sandwiched between the Spanish, west of the Rocky Mountains, and the British, east of the Appalachian. This balance was the perfect mixture to unfold the deadly injustice that the citizens of France encountered not only in the Americas, but in their own country.

The last effect of the French was the loss of the Louisiana purchase to help fund France into a stable country once more. The Louisiana Purchase, a land mass more than 827,000 square miles , was for sale to releve the internal tension in France.

Overall, France was not ready to be a part of the new world in that specific moment because they were not stable nor financially ready for the large amounts of spending. From the first days of King Francis I, France was not able to catch up to the race of colonization nor establish permanent influence in each of the areas conquered. The French citizens, also unsatisfied with the highly excessive royal spending did not like the idea of the new world ridding them of money and supplies. However, the French being very involved with the colonization movement, they were able to spark some French influence to Canada, Louisiana, Haiti, and French Guiana at least. Though significance of the French was not as profound in the US as they hoped, people today have much French influence due to the fashion market, world sports, and the cuisine.

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