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      Along the shore south of the fort was a small village of French families, to whom La Salle had granted farms, and, farther on, a village of Iroquois, whom he had persuaded to settle here. Near these villages were the house and chapel of two Rcollet friars, Luc Buisset and Louis Hennepin. More than a hundred French acres of land had been cleared of wood, and planted in part with crops; while cattle, fowls, and swine had been brought up from Montreal. Four vessels, of from twenty-five to forty tons, had been built for the lake and the river; but canoes served best for ordinary uses, and La Salle's followers became so skilled in managing them that they were reputed the best canoe-men in America. Feudal lord of the forests around him, commander of a garrison raised and paid by himself, founder of the mission, and patron of the church, he reigned the autocrat of his lonely little empire.[98]

      Annaliotaha, as appears from the account drawn up by DollierHaving demolished Port Royal, the marauders went in boats up the river to the fields where the reapers were at work. These fled, and took refuge behind the ridge of a hill, whence they gazed helplessly on the destruction of their harvest. Biard approached them, and, according to the declaration of Poutrincourt made and attested before the Admiralty of Guienne, tried to persuade them to desert his son, Biencourt, and take service with Argall. The reply of one of the men gave little encouragement for further parley:

      The Jesuits had long been familiar with the ordinary rites of sepulture among the Hurons: the corpse placed in a crouching posture in the midst of the circle of friends and relatives; the long, 72 measured wail of the mourners; the speeches in praise of the dead, and consolation to the living; the funeral feast; the gifts at the place of burial; the funeral games, where the young men of the village contended for prizes; and the long period of mourning to those next of kin. The body was usually laid on a scaffold, or, more rarely, in the earth. This, however, was not its final resting-place. At intervals of ten or twelve years, each of the four nations which composed the Huron Confederacy gathered together its dead, and conveyed them all to a common place of sepulture. Here was celebrated the great "Feast of the Dead,"in the eyes of the Hurons, their most solemn and important ceremonial.Nicollet, especially, was a remarkable man. As early as 1639, he ascended the Green Bay of Lake Michigan, and crossed to the waters of the Mississippi. This was first shown by the researches of Mr. Shea. See his Discovery and Exploration of the Mississippi Valley, XX.

      1615, 1616.

      Trade was carried on for a time by means of negotiable notes, payable in furs, goods, or farm produce. In 1685, the intendant Meules issued a card currency. He had no money to pay the soldiers, and not knowing, he informs the minister, to what saint to make my vows, the idea occurred to me of putting in circulation notes made of cards, each cut into four pieces; and I have issued an ordinance commanding the inhabitants to receive them in payment. * The cards were common playing cards, and each piece was stamped with a fleur-de-lis and a crown, and signed by the governor, the intendant, and the clerk of the treasury at Quebec. ** The example of Meules found ready imitation. Governors and intendants made card money whenever they saw fit; and, being worthless everywhere but in Canada, it showed no disposition to escape the colony. It was declared convertible not into coin, but into bills of exchange; and this conversion could only take place at brief specified periods. The currency used in Canada, says a writer in the last years of the French rule, has no value as a representative of money. It is the sign of a sign. *** It was card representing paper, and this paper was very often dishonored. In 1714, the amount of card rubbish had risen to two million livres. Confidence was lost, and trade was half dead. The minister Ponchartrain came to the rescue, and promised to

      The papers cited are drawn partly from the Registres du Conseil Suprieur, still preserved at Quebec, and partly from the Archives of the Marine and Colonies. Lavals admirer, the abb La Tour, in his eagerness to justify the bishop, says that the quarrel arose from a dispute about precedence between Mzy and the intendant, and from the ill-humor of the governor because the intendant shared the profits of his office. The truth is, that there was no intendant in Canada during the term of Mezys government. One Robert had been appointed to the office, but he never came to the colony. The commissioner Gaudais, during the two or three months of his stay at Quebec, took the intendants place at the council-board; but harmony between Laval and Mzy was unbroken till after his departure. Other writers say that the dispute arose from the old question about brandy. Towards the end of the quarrel there was some disorder from this source, but even then the brandy question was subordinate to other subjects of strife.


      What a cuff! he muttered, wiping away the blood which streamed from his ear upon his brown shoulder then, glancing at the others again, he added with evident admiration of the blow: I never had such a knock before.[308] Joutel, Relation (Margry, iii. 206). Compare Le Clerc, ii. 296. Cavelier, always disposed to exaggerate, says that ten men were killed. La Salle had previously had encounters with the Indians, and punished them severely for the trouble they had given his men. Le Clerc says of the principal fight: "Several Indians were wounded, a few were killed, and others made prisoners,one of whom, a girl of three or four years, was baptized, and died a few days after, as the first-fruit of this mission, and a sure conquest sent to heaven."


      Justice, Police, et Finances en Canada, etc., pour M. Talon, nearly with Susanes statement.


      Meanwhile, the work was urged on. A large building was finished, constructed of timber, roofed with boards and raw hides, and divided into apartments for lodging and other uses. La Salle gave the new establishment his favorite name of Fort St. Louis, and the neighboring bay was also christened after the royal saint.[304] The scene was not without [Pg 395] its charms. Towards the southeast stretched the bay with its bordering meadows; and on the northeast the Lavaca ran along the base of green declivities. Around, far and near, rolled a sea of prairie, with distant forests, dim in the summer haze. At times, it was dotted with the browsing buffalo, not yet scared from their wonted pastures; and the grassy swells were spangled with the flowers for which Texas is renowned, and which now form the gay ornaments of our gardens."Are you convinced now," he asked, "that what I have told you is true?"