French-Canadians help the Corps of Discovery

French-Canadians help the Corps of Discovery

In all my reading about Lewis and Clark, I never paid attention to the French-Canadian role on the expedition. Guess what we’re going to do today? Starting with President Thomas Jefferson, who read Alexander Mackenzie’s 1801 book about his 1792 overland...
US coin commemorates French-Canadian fur trade

US coin commemorates French-Canadian fur trade

Q: What piece of US currency is linked to the French-Canadian fur trade? A: The Sacagawea dollar! Her baby, peeking over her ear, is half French-Canadian. His father is Toussaint Charbonneau. The Lewis and Clark expedition of 1804-06 wouldn’t have had its success...
Tracing the voyageurs’ highway: four memoirs

Tracing the voyageurs’ highway: four memoirs

Looking for summer reading? Here are four stories of adventure in the northern woods and waters. The voyage changed the lives of the young canoeists — and the others had been hoping for years to make this trek. I paddled only a few times in the Boundary Waters or on...
John Macdonell’s journal: part 5

John Macdonell’s journal: part 5

After five weeks traveling in 1793, John Macdonell and two others arrive at Michilimackinac, where they spend a companionable day or so. Then they hustle on to the rendezvous where important company decisions are being made. His journal continues, the fifth part in...
John Macdonell’s journal: part 5

John Macdonell’s journal: part 4

John Macdonell has been traveling for a month with his first-ever canoe brigade, in 1793. This is the fourth of 5 parts. June 24 ~ Left the Prairie des Vases and crossed a large bay of Lake Nipissing. I have been informed it is so shallow that they spear fish in...
John Macdonell’s journal: part 5

John Macdonell’s journal: part 3

John Macdonnell’s brigade is working their way upstream since May 25, 1793. It takes them about 3 weeks to reach the Mattawa River, a tributary off the Ottawa River, which they call the Grand River. Eventually they reach the height-of-land, and, with a big...

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