Hist 140
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    Hist 140 Hist 140 Presentation Transcript

    • The French in North America
      Katelyn Gauthier
    • American Colonies: Canada & Iroquoia – Fur Trade
      Fisheries in Newfoundland employed around twelve thousand men in 1580
      Shore camps set up for fishing introduced Europeans to Indians adorning elegant furs
      Overhunting in England made furs worth a high price
      Europeans began trading with the Native Americans – European goods in exchange for fur which the Europeans would ship to England
      Because the Indians believed all objects to be living, they were especially attracted to goods that were bright or shiny, convinced that they had spiritual power
      Eventually, the Indians began to value the commodities for more than just their shine
      The Indians appreciated the stronger European materials used for tools and cooking
      The Indians were also drawn to another European commodity – alcohol
      The Indians used alcohol to reach spiritual trances faster than had been experienced through long fasting
      Paradoxically, alcohol was also responsible for influencing fights and even killing among tribe members
      Eventually both the French and the Indians adapted to understand each other’s trade protocols: the French began to comprehend gift giving while Indians caught on to negotiating prices
      Some Europeans were said to kidnap Indians during a trade, which triggered an uneasiness felt among Indians traders
      Some Indians would require Europeans to remain on their boat during trade, only exchanging at a distance with the use of a rope
      Trade between the Europeans and Indians began to have an effect on Indian life
      The Indians became more and more dependent upon European trade. They reached a certain point to where it was very necessary to keep peace with the Europeans lest they be deprived of commodities they’d become so accustomed to
      To keep up with this trade, Indians began to deplete resources, and consequently sought sources on territories of other Indians. This caused tension between tribes
      As conflict arose between tribes, the tribes with European weaponry were the one that would prevail
    • American Colonies: Canada & Iroquoia - Canada
      Samuel de Champlain started colony of New France on St. Lawrence River in 1608
      St. Lawrence was ideal for French fur trade for five reasons:
      Far from Spanish powers
      Northern location meant thicker furs
      Home to Montagnais and Algonkin which were better hunters than peoples of the southern regions
      Offered access far westward by river
      Narrow river allowed for only single point of entry which was good for defense
      By 1627 New France grew to only 85 colonists
      The nearby Huron people were split 20,000 people to only 20 villages
      The Huron excelled at trade strategies – they would grow a surplus of crops to be traded with northern tribes in exchange for their furs; they would then trade these furs with Europeans at an inflated price
      Because the Huron supplied 2/3 of furs in New France, the Huron became very close and valuable trading partners
      As a result, gaining such close friends also meant gaining enemies – opposing tribes, including the Five Nations
    • American Colonies: Canada & Iroquoia – The Five Nations
      The way in which the women of the Iroquois would tend to the crops in order for the men to have food for war gave them an edge in long-distance warfare
      Success in war went hand in hand with male prestige
      For those lost in war, the Iroquois believed their spirits would linger about the village and create disease and misfortune
      To encourage the spirit into the afterlife, Indians sought “replacements” as condolences
      Men captured from other tribes were often kill by slow torture while women and children were taken in and assimilated into their own tribe. They would be given a name and identity taken from a dead tribe member and expected to take on that role
      The practice of seeking war captives as a means of condolences was known as “mourning wars”
      During the fifteenth century, war between tribes devastated the nations of the Iroquois
      Finally, Deganawida proposed an offer of peace – that the nations cease revenge killings and offer presents for condolences instead.
      The five nations would be unified not through a common government but through peace
      Consequently, the united Great League of Nations focused their hostility outward at other tribes instead – particularly tribes that declined joining the League, such as the Algonquian speaking Iroquois
    • American Colonies: Canada & Iroquoia – The Jesuits
      After the fur trade launched New France, French leaders began a mission to convert Indians to Catholicism in hopes they consequently become more dependent on the French
      The first efforts were made in 1615 by four priests from the Recollet Order sent to convert the Montagnais
      In the span of ten years, only 50 natives were converted and most were on their deathbeds
      From 1625 to 1626 eight priests from the Jesuit Order came with better training in finance and in missionary work
      The Jesuits were quickly nicknamed the Black Robes because of their attire
      In 1634 the Huron were persuaded by Champlain to take the priests as a price for continued trade
      Rather than force the natives to learn the French language, The Jesuits instead learned the language of the natives
      The Huron quickly noted the lack of interest by the Jesuits in such worldly things as land, fur, and women
      The Huron, who considered torture a test of one’s manhood, held great respect for a Jesuit priest that after having been captured by the Iroquois returned with most of his fingers lost.
      Like the shamans of the Huron tribe, Jesuit priests were known to demonstrate “magic,” and even able to heal.
      This caught the attention of the Huron who were more entranced by the aspect of magic than of the religion itself
      As disease began to spread throughout the Huron, the members believed the priests’ magic to be responsible
      Initially, Jesuit priests had a very difficult time converting because the Huron
      After learning that the dead may go to one of two places after their passing, the Huron opted not to convert in fear of being separated from their loved ones in the afterlife
      However, ones Catholic conversions began to take off, this concept began to draw more people in
      Some associate religious conversion of the Huron with a decline in morale throughout the tribe
    • American Colonies: French America - Emigrants
      Cold climate and difficult access eliminated threat of British access
      Relatively small number of colonists reduced friction with Indian tribes
      In fear of British overtaking, French crown began recruiting colonists to New France by bribing men of means with tempting offers of titles as “seigneurs.”
      By 1675 70 seigneurs existed in the St. Lawrence Valley
      Seigneurs made up the first farm families in Canada
      New France grew from 700 colonists in 1650 to 3000 by 1663
      Finally in 1663, the crown took control of New France
      Many colonists emigrated as servants in order to work up to eventually having their own land
      Males either became soldiers of engages
      Females were known as filles du roi until they quickly married
      It turned out that about 2/3 of engages and 3/4 of the soldiers returned to France
      French emigration was costing the crown more than it was bringing in, and in 1673, the crown halted emigration funding
      Regardless of the halting in funding, natural birthrate increased the French population of New France from 3000 in 1663 to 15,000 in 1700
      Despite hardships in colonial New France, colonists were much better off than in France where 85 percent of French peasants owned less than 13 acres
      New France attracted many religious dissidents, but in 1632, France forbade their settlement in New France
      As a result, Huguenots fled to nearby Protestant nations and later to British colonies in North America, increasing British colonial population by 10,000
      At the same time, the bitterly cold Canadian winter and the warm, mosquito infested summer wasn’t attractive to emigrants
      Farmers in New France focused on livestock and grains rather than warmer-climate crops such as tobacco and sugar
      Shipping crops or livestock to France from Canada cost twice as much as from the West Indies which meant that exporting goods in New France was hardly profitable
      Famers in New France relied on the circulation of French money paid to the soldiers, but payment for soldiers exceeded profit of furs, and to compensate, the crown increased Canadian taxes
    • American Colonies: French America - Opportunity
      Standard of living for those that emigrated out of France to Canada had a much better standard of living than did French peasants; Colonists in New France...:
      Leased hundred acre farms
      Regularly consumer bread and meat
      Were legally allowed to hunt and fish
      Were not taxed on lands
      Paid tithes that were half that of those paid in France
      Rents of land were fixed, even being passed down in inheritance
      Women had the option of a more secure life in the convent (although only four percent could afford to do so)
      Life for French colonists in Canada differed from that of British colonists in several ways:
      Land was rented from seigneurs who collected a twelfth of the purchase price when sold
      Because of limited entrepreneurial opportunities, there was more equality in New France and were known for their leisure and hospitality
      Women were more shadowed by their husbands; law nearly always sided with the man who was allowed to use “force” within “reasonable correction”
      Helped men with labor in the fields as well as the house and children
    • American Colonies: French America - Authority
      Authority in New France:
      New France colonies were slightly militaristic
      Three officials were appointed by the crown:
      Military governor-general
      Civil administrator called an intendant
      Catholic bishop
      Council consisted of 5-7 seigneurs in addition to the governor-general, bishop, intendant, and attorney general
      No elective assembly for colonists
      Religion & Education:
      Very limited availability of education
      Less than a quarter of colonists could read or write
      Each of the parishes in the St. Lawrence Valley had a church, a priest, and a militia company
      Every male between the ages of 16 and 60 were by law required to serve in the militia
      Seigneurs
      Seigneur families made up five percent of the Canadian population
      Seigneurs were honored as aristocratic rather than as laborious workers
      It was frowned upon for seigneurs to participate in hard labor
      In addition to fur trade licenses, Seigneurs were also awarded the same commissions as soldiers and salaries as civil officials
      It was rare for merchants to become seigneurs, although one exception was Charles Le Moyne who began as a poor fur trader and eventually earned enough wealth to buy the rights of a seigneury
      When a seigneur died, their widows received pensions in order to uphold their standard of living
      Because of the noble standard Seigneurs were expected to carry, seigneur children often ended up poor as they were not encouraged to participate in labor
    • American Colonies: French America – Louisiana
      In 1682, Sieur de La Salle impressed the Kind of France with his exploration of the Mississippi Valley
      In hopes of spreading French influence throughout North America, the king acted quickly by expanding trade to link Canada and Louisiana
      In competition with the British, French traders strengthened Indian relations with trade exclusively, rather than any matter of religious conversion. Also, they tempted the Indians with coveted European firearms
      After the War of the Spanish Succession, the crown handed Louisiana over to the Company of the Indies who established New Orleans in 1718
      The Company offered 170 acre riverfront farms to migrating colonists
      By 1708, Louisiana was scattered with 122 soldiers, 8- slaves, and 77 habitants
      Louisiana colonists lived off of gardening, herding, hunting, fishing, and trading
      It turned out that spring flood and hurricanes followed by summer drought made farming in Louisiana extremely difficult
      As a result, many surviving colonists fled to Florida, leaving only a third of the Louisiana habitants by 1731
      2000 whites and 4000 Africans, but population began recovering again in the 1740’s when colonists started to gain immunities to diseases like malaria
      From natural increase, the population climbed back up to 600 soldiers, 3300 whites, and 4100 Africans by 1746
      Many habitants of Louisiana were convicted criminals which didn’t give New Orleans much of a reputation
      Without an electoral check, Louisiana officials were known for being very corrupt
      Between a corrupt government and many previously convicted habitants, Louisiana gained a reputation for being a region, as one colonist put it, “without religion, without justice, without discipline, without order, and without police.”
      In addition, Louisiana’s economy suffered - high costs and dangers of voyages from Louisiana to France made shipment to France unprofitable
      In 1731, the Company of the Indies gave control of Louisiana back to the crown
      Due to the conditions in Louisiana, many fled to Florida, Carolina, Cuba, New Mexico, or to live among the Indians
      France began rewarding Creek warriors to find, capture, and kill these “deserters”