‘Indian’ is not the best word?

‘Indian’ is not the best word?

Have you been stymied in trying to figure out correct terminology to refer to our Native American brothers and sisters? In trying to be more respectful, we may not know which words to use. Among those in common usage are: first American, Native American, American...
Eat like a voyageur — pemmican (and rubaboo)

Eat like a voyageur — pemmican (and rubaboo)

What if — as a voyageur — you didn’t love pea soup, the only food provisioned by the French-Canadian fur companies, your twice-a day meal for 6 weeks on the Ottawa and Mattawa Rivers? After 94 meals, your brigade would have been down to its last cup of dried...
Eat like a voyageur — pea soup (Yum?)

Eat like a voyageur — pea soup (Yum?)

What voyageurs ate depended mostly on where they were — along the rivers, in the Great Lakes, at their wintering post or back home.  In the earliest days, Radisson, Champlain, Pond and other French-Canadian explorers and adventurers hunted and fished — and traded with...
Celebrate Christmas like the voyageurs?

Celebrate Christmas like the voyageurs?

Q: How did voyageurs celebrate Christmas ?  A: Not like we do. Our favorite holiday traditions hadn’t been invented yet, so no Ho-Ho-Hos, no Santa, no tree or decorations, no cookies or concerts, no Nutcracker or Christmas Carol performances, no Grinch or...
Discover Prairie du Chien in the 1800s

Discover Prairie du Chien in the 1800s

My novels focus on the voyageurs as they paddled from Canada. But what were French-Canadian villages like? At Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, we spent three days experiencing what one may have felt like. There were hundreds of take-aways. To give you a flavor, Jean Day...
Beads: tiniest of the fur trade goods

Beads: tiniest of the fur trade goods

Beads were the smallest of the trade goods that the French-Canadian voyageurs carried. Tiny as they were, they packed a punch with color, sparkle and the myriad unique ways they could be combined. (I know — I love earrings and their pop of color and style.) Native...

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