The Jesuit Relations and Allied Documents

Travels and Explorations

of the Jesuit Missionaries

in New France








Reuben Gold Thwaites

Secretary of the State historical Society of Wisconsin


Thom Mentrak

Historical Interpreter at Ste. Marie Among The Iroquois


Lower Canada, Iroquois

CLEVELAND: The Burrows Brothers


¯ ¯ ¯ ¯ ¯ ¯ ¯


Editor Reuben Gold Thwaites

| Finlow Alexander [French]

| Percy Favor Bicknell [French]

| John Cutler Covert [French]

| William Frederic Giese [Latin]

Translators. | Crawford Lindsay [French]

| Mary Sifton Pepper [French & Italian]

| William Price [French]

| Hiram Allen Sober [French]

| John Dorsey Wolcott [Latin]

Assistant Editor Emma Helen Blair

Bibliographical Adviser Victor Hugo Paltsits





Preface To Volume XLII






Relation de ce qvi s’est passé en la Mission des Peres de la Compagnie de Iesves, av pays de la Novvelle France, és années 1655. & 1656. Jean de Quens; Kebec, September 7, 1656




Journal des PP. Jésuits. Jean de Quen; Québec, October 25 to December 27, 1656.



Mort du Frere Liegeois. Anonymous n.p., n.d.



Catalogve des Bienfaictevrs de N. Dame de Recouurance de Kebec, Jerome Lalemant, Jean de Brébeuf, Paul Ragueneau, Jean de Quen, and others; Kebec, 1632-1657



Bibliographical Data; Volume XLII





[page 7]




Photographic facsimile of title-page, Relation of 1655-56



Following is a synopsis of the documents contained in the present volume:

XC. The Relation of 1655-56 is written by Jean de Quen, in the absence of his superior (Le Mercier) at the Onondaga mission recently begun by the Jesuits. This enterprise constitutes the main subject-matter of the Relation, and is fully described in the journal of Father Dablon, who, with Chaumonot, began the mission in the preceding autumn (1655). A prefatory note by De Quen outlines the chief events of the year, which are later given in detail.

The spring of 1656 opens most auspiciously for commerce; "for twenty years past, vessels have not reached this country so early,—at the very beginning of the month of June,—or in greater number." An appeal is made for six more missionaries, in view of the new fields of labor which are now opening.

The Relation proper begins with an account of Le Moyne's second voyage to the Mohawk country (August to November, 1655). He is welcomed by that tribe; and councils are held, with profusion of speeches and presents. The Father then visits the Dutch settlement at Fort Orange. After returning thence, his life is threatened by a pretended madman, who is only appeased by the offer of a dog for sacrifice. In November, he returns to Montreal, experiencing great hardships on the journey thither. [page 9]

Soon after Le Moyne's departure on the above errand, an Onondaga deputation, "representing all the upper Iroquois Nations," arrives at Québec to confirm the peace. At the ensuing council, the envoys give twenty-four presents to Onontio and his allies. They ask for a French colony in their country, and for Christian teachers; also for French soldiers to aid them against their enemies, the Eries. After careful consideration, it is decided to send back Dablon and Chaumonot with these envoys (as we have already seen in Doc. LXXXVII., Vol. XLI.). The greater part of this .relation is devoted to an account of their embassy to Onondaga, as recounted in the journal thereof kept by Father Dablon.

The voyage thither is described in detail. The travelers' mainly depend for their food upon such game as they encounter. At first, this is scarce, but soon they find abundance,—on one occasion killing thirty bears in one day. "One of the ceremonies of the feast that followed this great slaughter was the drinking of bear's fat after the meal, as one drinks hippocras in France." One night, an Indian suddenly becomes temporarily insane, and imagines that some animal which plunges into the water has leaped down his throat. His tribesmen undertake to cure his delusion by pretending to share it, and mimicking his actions, and a laughable scene ensues. "They too began to cry and sing in imitation of the animals with which they were supposed to be afflicted,—all, in time with their song, beating that wretched man. What confusion!—a score of voices imitating ducks, teals, and frogs; and what a spectacle, to see people counterfeiting madness in order to cure a madman! Finally, they succeeded; for, [page 10] after our man had perspired well, and become thoroughly tired, he lay down on his mat, and slept as peacefully as if nothing had happened." At the end of ten days, they reach an outpost of the Onondaga country,—a fishing village, where Chaumonot meets several of his former Huron disciples, now captives among the Iroquois. At a little distance from the chief village of the Onondagas, the Fathers are met by the old men of that tribe, who, after speeches of welcome, escort them to the village, where they are hospitably entertained and lodged.

Numerous councils are held, at which a special effort is made by the Jesuits to secure peace for the Algonkins as well as the French,—a point of especial difficulty with the Iroquois. The time outside of these affairs is variously spent,—sometimes in religious labors; sometimes in entertaining discourse with a group of savages, who ask questions about the French and their country across the sea, or "about the beginning of the world." The Frenchmen are taken to visit the salt spring four leagues thence, at which place it is proposed to establish the colony and mission. A child of ten years, captured from the Eries, with whom the Iroquois are at war, is burnt to death; but the Father succeeds in secretly baptizing this boy before his death. His torment lasts "only two hours, because of his youth; and not a tear or a cry escaped him from amid the flames." On Sunday, the Fathers say mass in the cabin of a woman of rank, who was converted to the faith at Québec and on the homeward journey thence. Cayuga and Oneida deputies arrive, and take part in the ratification of peace. Chaumonot, following the custom of the country, makes numerous presents of [page 11] wampum and beaver-skins to accompany his speeches; and having thus secured the good will of his savage hearers, preaches to them the Christian faith, to which they listen attentively. His eloquence and tact charm them; and the chief Cayuga deputy adopts him as a brother. Some conversions are made, and the Fathers baptize several children. They are overcome with delight when, at an important council, the most influential of the Onondaga chiefs solemnly announces his conversion to the faith,—a statement applauded by his people. A bark chapel is erected for the missionaries, but it proves too small for the crowds who come to hear them. They soon are able to baptize numerous adults, among them the oldest woman of the tribe, regarded by her people as a centenarian. Most of the leading men, however, refuse to believe,—especially as they will not give up their faith in dreams; they also fear that the Christian religion will bring ruin upon their country, as they think it has done with the Hurons. Teotonharason—the woman already mentioned, who offered her cabin for use as a chapel—and several of her family are attacked by apparently mortal diseases; but all are miraculously cured by baptism, which confounds those who have slandered the faith. These last spread many false rumors, accusing the Fathers of sorcery, and of malice toward the Iroquois tribes.

The Fathers behold and describe many superstitious rites,—among these, some practiced in obedience to dreams, which even involve the sacrifice of human life; also the Ononhouaroia, or "festival of fools," as Chaumonot calls it. One of the men participating therein, the host of the Fathers, sets his own cabin on fire; but Chaumonot arrives in time [page 12] to put out the flames, and pacifies the frenzied man.

The ceremonies which are annually performed by these savages in preparation for war are also described. This is followed by an explanation of their reasons for attacking the Erie tribe. A captive taken from those enemies is brought to Onondaga, and burned to death at a slow fire.

On the last day of February, 1656, the Onondagas notify the ,Jesuits that the proposed French settlement among them must be begun at once, or they will break off the peace. After many unsuccessful efforts to send word to Québec regarding these matters, Dablon himself goes thither, escorted by a score of Indians. This trip, made during the month of March, is full of hardship and suffering. At the end of his journal is inserted a note by the Paris editor, announcing that letters just received from Québec inform him that Dablon has returned to Onondaga with the superior of the missions, Le Mercier, and two other priests, to join Chaumonot there. These missionaries "are escorted by fifty valiant Frenchmen, who have already begun a good settlement in the very heart of these Nations."

The account of the Onondaga mission being finished for this year, De Quen proceeds to mention the discoveries of two young Frenchmen who return (August, 1656) from a two years trading and exploring expedition to the upper lake region. Their names are not given here, but recent researches identify these adventurers as Radisson and Groseilliers, and the region explored by them as Wisconsin and the shores of Lake Superior. Not only do they discover new lands and tribes, but they have "sent to heaven about three hundred little children," by [page 13] baptizing them. They bring back an Ottawa fleet of fifty canoes, loaded with furs,—a joyous sight for the poor colonists. With these Ottawas, upon their return home, depart two Jesuits, Garreau and Druillettes; but the fleet is attacked by the Iroquois, not far from Three Rivers, and Garreau is mortally wounded. The final chapter gives various details of the death and the virtues of this missionary.

XCI. The Journal des Jesuits contains a lacuna from February 5,1654 to October 25,1656. A record for that time was kept by Le Mercier and others; but, for some unknown reason, it was written upon paper of another size, and detached from the book usually devoted to this purpose. An explanation to this effect is made by De Quen, who continues the Journal. It may be added that the MS. above referred to has long since disappeared, with many other valuable documents.

Beginning, then, with October 25,1656, De Quen continues the record. A cemetery for the hospital nuns is consecrated in their new choir; and on the same day is laid therein the body of Charles de Lauson's young wife. The Iroquois still attempt to seduce the Hurons at Quebec. A council is held, November 3, at which the Oneida envoys offer presents to the Hurons to induce them to settle in the Iroquois country. Le Moyne brings assurances of peace from the Mohawks. On the 17th, Ragueneau makes presents to the Oneidas; one of these is "to grease their Legs, and to welcome them on their arrival.".The general purpose of this council is to establish amicable relations with that tribe, who also invite the Jesuits to live with them. The day after Christmas, Mohawk ambassadors come to notify the [page 14] Hurons that their warriors will come next spring to escort them to the Iroquois country.

XCII. A separate sheet lying within the MS. volume of the Journal des Jésuites gives an account of the death, at the hands of the Iroquois (May 25, 1655), of the Jesuit brother, Jean Liégeois. Commendation is bestowed upon his services to the mission, and his fidelity therein.

XCIII. This curious and interesting document gives "a list of the benefactors of Nôtre Dame de Recouvrance at Kebec," from 1632 to 1657. This was the chapel built by Champlain, who also left in his will a bequest for it. The members of the Hundred Associates, both collectively and individually, gave various ornaments and supplies for the use of the chapel, until it was destroyed by fire in 1640; thereafter, they left "the care of that matter to the charity of the habitants, contenting themselves with paying the pension of 600 livres for two fathers at each Residence." Montmagny was a generous and frequent giver. In 1645, a gift of 1,250 beaver-skins was made by the governor and the habitants for building a church at Québec in honor of Our Lady of Peace. A year later, the Associates gave to the church, apparently at Montmagny's suggestion, a bell for its steeple.

La Tour, the Acadian exile, gives 100 livres in money (1647); and Robert Hache, the Jesuit brother (1650), a large bell of 1,000 livres' weight. Two of the habitants bequeath by will small legacies. Many devout ladies of the colony bestow gifts,—sometimes money, more often altar-cloths, laces, garments, etc. Prominent among these is Madame de la Peltrie, the foundress of the Ursuline Convent. It is [page 15] noticed that, since 1651, the Jesuit house has given much aid to the parish church,—maintaining a seminary for children, caring for the sacristy, etc. Various gifts from France are recorded, presented by benefactors of the missions, or by personal friends of Canadian priests and nuns. Most of the prominent habitants of Québec are mentioned in this list of donations.


Madison, Wis., March, 1899. [page 16]




of the Society of Jesus,



in the Years 1655, and 1656.


Sent to REV. FATHER Louys Cellot,

Provincial of the Society of Jesus

in the Province of France.









Sebastien cramoisy,



ed by

Printer in ordinary to the King;

and to the Queen Regent,

ruë St. Jac-ques, at the



Gabriel Cramoisy.

sign of the Storks.

M. DC. LI.


[page 21].

Table of the Chapters contained in this Book.


RELATION of what occurred in the Mission of the Fathers of the Society of Jesus, in the Country of New France, in the years 1655 and 1656


page 1

Chap. I

Journey of Father Simon le Moyne to the Agnieronnon Iroquois



Embassy of the Onontaeronnon Iroquois who ask for some Fathers of our Society to convert them to Christianity



Journey of Fathers Joseph Chaumont and Claude Dablon to Onontagué, a country of the Upper Iroquois



The Fathers arrive at Onontagué



The Fathers treat with these Peoples



The Fathers make their presents



Reply to the Fathers' presents .



The first-fruits gathered in this Mission



Some remarkable cures. The Father continues his teachings. The Savages obey their dreams



Ceremonies preparatory to War. Some engagemnents



The cause of the War against the Cat Nation



Councils he1d by these Tribes. Meeting with Hurons. Execution of a prisoner. A Savage's Vision [page 23]



Father Claude Dablon's departure from Onontagué to return to Kebec



Of the arrival of a company of Algonquins called the Outaouak



The departure of the Outaouak Algonquins, and their defeat



Of Father Leonard Garreau's death [page 25]


[I] Relation of what occurred in the Mission of

the Fathers of the Society of JESUS, in

the Country of New France, in

the years 1655 and 1656.

Sent to the Rev. Father Louys Cellot, Provincial of the Society of Jesus in the Province of France.


Pax Christi.

As the Weeks are composed of both days and nights; the Seasons, of heat and cold, of rain [2] and shine; so also we may say, our year has been but a mixing of joys and sorrows, of successes and failures. To decide which of the two has predominated, I leave to Your Reverence and to all those to whom the state of our Missions—an account of which I send you herewith—shall be communicated.

For twenty years past, vessels have not reached this country so early, or in greater number. Five or six at a time were seen anchored in the roadstead at Kebec,—and that in the very beginning of the month of June,—to our own delight and that of the entire country. But, not finding in the vessels a single one of our Fathers come to help us in the conquest of souls, we were very keenly disappointed.

In the month of September of fast year, 1655, two of our Fathers went up [3] to the country of the Onontaeronon Iroquois, to start a new Mission among people who, after killing, slaughtering, burning, and eating us, came to [page 31] solicit our services. During the entire Winter, we were apprehensive of the failure of this enterprise; but last Spring the return of one of the two fathers, accompanied by several Iroquois Captains, changed , this fear into some confidence, which fed us to hope for success in the undertaking.

This hope was notably increased by the real and courage exhibited by four of our Fathers, two of our Brethren, and fifty young Frenchmen, who went to lay the foundations of a new Church in a place where the Evil One and cruelty have reigned, perhaps, ever since the Deluge. The Onontaeronon Iroquois, who had come to visit us, exulted with joy on seeing us favor [4] their purpose, and their delight, as shown in word and look, over flowed into our own hearts. But this joyous mood soon became clouded by the massacre or capture of seventy-one Christian Hurons, killed or seized by the Agneronon Iroquois on the island of Orleans, two leagues from Kebec. Ours was a mingled portion of good and ill, of joy and sorrow.

Toward the end of the month of August, we perceived fifty Canoes and Two hundred and fifty Savages approaching, laden with the treasures of the country. They were coming to trade with the French, and to ask for Fathers of our Society to go and teach them in their dense Forests, five hundred leagues distant from Kebec. In the face of so pleasant a day, we forgot all the unpleasant nights of the past. Two of our Fathers and one of our Brethren embarked, with thirty Frenchmen, but the Agneronons—[5] whom we call The lower Iroquois, and who have never consented to make peace with our Allies—cut The thread of our hopes in a moment by attacking these unfortunate people, on their return, and killing one of the two fathers who were going to preach the Gospel to them in their country. [page 33]

You see plainly with what truth we ran say that the days of this past year have been boni et mali—"good and evil," Like the days of Jacob. Yet, Let us say rather, that they have all been good, since they have been filled with Crosses. We have this consolation, that it is the cause of Jesus Christ and his gospel that gives rise to our Labors and Loss of Life. We are not startled at the sight of our own blood. Our small number causes us grief and sadness; we cry for help and succor, and we believe that Your Reverence will hear our appeal, although uttered [6] from a far; and that you will send us, by the next ship, six valiant Fathers, men of courage, who are not afraid to fare a thousand deaths, which danger must every day be undergone in seeking Barbarians in the Lairs of their vast forests. We pray you earnestly to grant our request, and entreat that we may receive the aid of your prayers and of those of all our Fathers and Brethren in your Province.

Your Reverence's

Kebec, this 7th of Very humble and very obedient

September, 1656. servant in Our Lord,

Jean de Quens.

[page 35]




N the Summer of last year, 1655, it was thought necessary to send a Father of our Society into the country of the Agnieronnon Iroquois, in order that we might, by this show of friendship and confidence, confirm the peace with them. The lot having fortunately fallen upon Father Simon le Moyne, he left Montréal on this errand, on the seven teenth day of August, with twelve Iroquois and two Frenchmen.

The route is one of Precipices, lakes, and rivers, of hunting and fishing, of weariness and recreation, varying in different parts. Soon after their departure, our travelers killed eighteen wild Cows within less than an hour, on Prairies prepared by nature alone for those ownerless herds. They were wrecked, a little farther [8] on, in an impetuous torrent, which carried them into a bay where they found the gentlest calm in the world. Some days' journey, hence, hunger overtook them and made them relish all that they took in hunting, whether a Wolf or a Wildcat, a Bear or a Fox,—in short, any animal whatever. They were sometimes forced to lie down at night with no refreshment but boiled water, mixed with earth and clay. Wild fruits lost their bitterness, and seemed delicious to the taste, hunger serving excellently to sweeten them. [page 37]

The Father reached the village of Agniée on the seventeenth of September, and was received with extraordinary cordiality, being presented at the outset with three porcelain collars. The first was to check any possible bloodshed on the way, which might alarm him,—that is, he was not to fear death by treachery. The second was to cheer his heart, and prevent any emotion from disturbing his rest. Finally, [9] they must needs anoint his feet with a precious balm, to allay the fatigues of so long a journey; and such was the purpose of the third porcelain collar.

On the following day, when all the people had assembled in the public place, the Father displayed the presents brought by him from Onnontio, Governor of the Country. Instead of beginning this ceremony with a song, as is their custom, he invoked God in a loud voice and in the language of the country,—calling him to witness the sincerity of his heart; and entreating him to take vengeance on those who should violate their faith, and break a promise given so solemnly in the sight of the Sun and of Heaven. This greatly pleased these people.

One of the Iroquois Captains exhibited, in his turn, some very rich presents, in answer to the various articles of peace proposed by the Father. The first and finest of these presents was a large image of the Sun, made of six thousand porcelain beads,—its purpose being, as he said, to dispel all darkness from [10] our councils, and to let the Sun illumine them even in the deepest gloom of night.

These Nations are composed only of rogues, and yet we must trust ourselves to their fickleness, and surrender ourselves to their cruelty. Father Isaac [page 39] Jogues was killed by those traitors while they were showing him the most love. But, since Jesus Christ sent his Apostles as Lambs among wolves, to convert them into Lambs, we should not fear to lay down our lives in like circumstances, for the sake of establishing Peace and the Faith where war and infidelity have always held sway.

After this council, which passed in many exchanges of courtesy, the Father determined to push on as far as New Holland, ten or twelve leagues beyond. A Huron woman—a Christian, and for six years a captive among the Iroquois—was awaiting him on the way with holy impatience, and received him with joy, bringing him a little innocent to baptize, whom God had given her in her captivity, and whom she was rearing for Heaven. It is [11] a very lively satisfaction to pluck these fruits of the Blood of Jesus Christ, in a barbarous country, and in the midst of infidelity. The compliment paid the Father by a good woman has no savor of barbarism. "Thy coming," she said to him, "makes us glad in our inmost souls; our smallest children are so rejoiced that they begin to grow before our eyes; and even those not yet born leap with joy in their mothers' wombs, and wish to come forth at the earliest moment, to be blessed in seeing thee."

The Father was received with great demonstrations of affection by the Dutch, who had recently met with a serious disaster. Some Savages living near Manathe, the chief town of New Holland, in a quarrel with a Dutchman had come to blows, and had fared ill, leaving two or three of their men upon the spot. To revenge this grievance, the Savages rallied, to the number of about two hundred, and fired a [page 41] score of small Farms scattered here and there, slaughtering those [12] who resisted, and carrying the rest—men, women, and children, about a hundred and fifty in all—into captivity. We do not know how the affair terminated.

Upon his return from this journey to New Holland, the Father was in great danger of falling a victim to a demon of hell, or a man who pretended to be possessed by a Demon, who ran through the cabins like a madman, and sang in a tone of frenzy that he was bent on killing Ondesonk (for so was the Father called). Demolishing everything in his path, he approached the Father, hatchet in hand; he was stopped in the act of raising it to deal a blow, apparently intending to split his head. But he continued his frenzy and his direful chant, until an Iroquois woman said to him: "Kill my dog, and let him be the victim instead of Ondesonk; for he is too great a friend of ours." At these words he grew calm; and, cleaving the animal's head with a hatchet-stroke, he bore it around, as if in triumph.

On the following morning, the madman's relatives [13] brought the Father a present of porcelain,—to wipe away the dust of the night, as they told him; for all this had occurred in the dread hours of darkness.

Among these people one must be ever in fear, and yet fear nothing; for not a hair shall fall from our heads without the permission of him who holds us in his hand and cares for our lives—and still less, if we surrender them to advance his glory.

A Huron Christian, captured a year before by the Iroquois, suffered something worse than fear; his [page 43] head was split without ceremony, upon a mere suspicion that he had revealed to the Father certain purposes of theirs which they wished to conceal from him.

The occurrence did not hinder the return of the Father and of the two Frenchmen, his companions, three Iroquois joining them as escort and guides. As the Winter was far advanced, much suffering was experienced, especially after meeting with some [14] Agnieronnon Iroquois, who had been pursued by an Algonquin band that had captured three of their companions. This fear of the Algonquins, whom they dreaded to encounter, compelled our travelers to abandon their canoes and almost all their baggage, and to take refuge in a pathless fir forest, where they found nothing but marshes of stagnant and half-frozen water. Unluckily, the Sky became clouded; and, as the Sun, the universal compass and guide of these peoples, was hidden, they utterly lost their way in the woods. Night compelled them to halt at the foot of a tree, but for whose roots and a little moss they would have lain in the water. This was on the ninth day of November.

The next day, they were forced to proceed at daybreak, in the rain, across those marshes, whence they found no outlet until very near night time. Issuing thence, they encountered only streams and boggy ground, where they sank in the mud [15] up to their knees. At the end, they found their way obstructed by a wide and deep river. Immediately they felled five or six trees of suitable size, and pushed them into the water, where they lashed them together, making therefrom a raft,—as it were, a floating bridge; on this they crossed the river, using [page 45] long poles which served as oars or paddles,—all this without having had a morsel to eat.

On the next day, although they occasionally climbed trees, to reconnoiter the country, they were just as much at a loss as ever. But, toward evening, they came to a stream that was known to them,—where, however, they found nothing to eat.

At length, on the fourth day of their long wandering, of their sore weariness, and of the cruel hunger which ever pursued them, they came in sight of Montréal, on the opposite bank of the river. When they had made a fire and discharged three or four musket-shots in announcement of their return, our French people's charity was [16] prompt to succor them, and to convey them by canoe back to the place whence they had started, nearly three months before. [page 47]



T the time when Father Simon le Moyne was sent to the Agnieronnon Iroquois,—who are nearer Montréal and Kebec, and who, while making Peace with us, have never desisted from their hostile designs on the Algonquins and Hurons,—the Onontaeronnon Iroquois, who are more distant, came on an Embassy representing all the upper Iroquois Nations, to confirm the Peace, not only with the French, but also with the Algonquins and Hurons. [17] The delegation consisted of eighteen men, who came to Kebec by way of Montréal and three Rivers, to see Monsieur de Lauson, Governor of the country, and also the Algonquin and Huron savages living here.

A great crowd assembled on the date fixed for the council,—Sunday, the twelfth of September, 1655, at noon. In the midst of this assembly the chief Ambassador, who acted as spokesman, displayed twenty-four collars of porcelain—the pearls and diamonds of this country, in the Savages' eyes.

The first eight presents were designed for the Hurons and Algonquins, whose foremost chiefs were in attendance. Each gift has a separate name of its own, according to the impression which they wish to produce upon the minds and hearts of others, [page 49]

"You have wept too much," said the Ambassador. to the Hurons and Algonquins; "it is time to wipe away the tears shed so plentifully by you over the death of [18] those whom you have lost in war. Here is a handkerchief for that purpose." Such was his first present.

The purpose of the second was to wipe away the blood which had crimsoned mountains, lakes, and rivers, and which was crying for vengeance against those who had shed it.

"I wrest from your hands hatchet, bows, and arrows," said he, exhibiting his third present; "and, to strike the evil at its root, I take away all thoughts of war from your hearts."

These people believe that sadness, anger, and all violent passions expel the rational soul from the body, which, meanwhile, is animated only by the sensitive soul which we have in common with animals. That is why, on such occasions, they usually make a present to restore the rational soul to the seat of reason. Such was the purpose of the fourth present.

The fifth was a medicinal draught to expel from their hearts all the bitterness, gall, and bile with which they might still be irritated.

[19] The sixth present was to open their ears to the words of truth and the promises of a genuine peace, in the knowledge that passion stupefies and blinds those who yield to it.

The seventh, to give assurance that the four upper Iroquois Nations were Peacefully inclined, and that their hearts would never be divided.

"There remains only the lower Iroquois, the Agnieronnon, who cannot restrain his warlike spirit. [page 51] His mind is ever inflamed, and his hands delight in blood. We will take the war-hatchet out of his hands, and check his fury; for the reign of Peace must be universal in this country." That was the eighth present, and the last of the words addressed to the Algonquins and Hurons.

The following were for the French, being addressed to Monsieur our Governor, whom they call Onnontio; one, to dry the tears of the French; another, to wash away the blood that had been [20] shed; another, to soothe our feelings; and the last, to serve us as a medicine, and as a draught sweeter than sugar and honey.

The thirteenth present was an invitation to Monsieur our Governor to send a company of Frenchmen to their country, in order to make but one people of us, and to confirm an alliance like that formerly contracted by us with the Huron Nation during our residence there.

The fourteenth was a request for some Fathers of our Society, to teach their children and make of them a thoroughly Christian people.

They further asked for French Soldiers, to defend their villages against the inroads of the Cat Nation, with whom they are at open war. That was their fifteenth present.

The object of the sixteenth present was to assign us a place in the center of all their Nations, where we hope, if God favor our undertakings, to build a new sainte Marie, like that whose prosperity we formerly witnessed in the [21] heart of the Huron country.

But, that the annoyances commonly attending the founding of a new settlement might not deter us,. [page 53] they spread out a mat and some camp-beds for our greater comfort and repose.

The eighteenth present was a May-tree, which they erected in front of that new house of sainte Marie, so high that it reached the clouds. By this they meant that the center of the Peace, and the place for general reunions, would be in that house, before which should be erected this great May-tree, so lofty that it could be seen from every direction, and all the Nations, even those most distant, could come to it.

The purpose of the nineteenth present was to fix the .Sun high in the Heavens above this May-tree,—so as to shine directly down upon it, and admit of no shadow,—in order that all councils held and treaties concluded there might take place, not in the obscurity of night, but in open day, lighted by the Sun, which sees all things and [22] has only abhorrence for treasonable plots, which court darkness.

They next lighted a fire for all who should visit us in that place.

The twenty-first present strengthened Onnontio's arms,—that is, as Monsieur our Governor had hitherto cherished the Algonquins and Hurons in his bosom, with all the love of a mother holding her child in her arms, he now extended to the Iroquois also a Father's care and love. "Thou, Onnontio," they said to Monsieur the Governor, "hast sustained life in all the Nations that became thy allies and took refuge in thy arms. Clasp them more firmly, and weary not of embracing them; let them live within thy bosom, for thou art the Father of the country."

The twenty-second present assured us that the [page 55] four upper Iroquois Nations had but one heart and one mind in their sincere desire for Peace.

After that, they asked for weapons against the Cat Nation.

[23] Finally, the last of the presents was offered by a Huron Captain, formerly a captive of the Iroquois, and now a Captain among them. This man, rising after the Chief of the Embassy had finished, addressed the Hurons as follows: "My brothers, I have not changed my soul, despite my change of country; nor has my blood become Iroquois, although I dwell among them. My heart is all Huron, as well as my tongue. I would keep silence, were there any deceit in these negotiations for Peace. Our proposals are honest; embrace them without distrust." Thus speaking, he gave them a collar, as the seal of his pledge, and to assure them that they were not deceived.

A response in kind to all these presents would have been necessary, had we not purposed sending to their country two of our Fathers to enlist their more cordial support, and to spare no effort in promoting so important an enterprise. This blessed lot fell on Fathers Joseph Chaumont and Claude Dablon, of whom the former [24] knows the language and commands the sympathies of the Savages; while the latter has recently come from France, with heart and soul bent upon this Mission.

Our minds had been greatly divided regarding the propriety of exposing our Fathers to this new risk before the return of Father Simon le Moyne, who was still in the hands of the Agnieronnon Iroquois. For nothing would have been more in accord with the disposition of those Nations,—treacherous as they [page 57] are, and having such an advantage over us in the possession of men whom they well knew to be dear and precious to us,—than to fall upon us and our Hurons and Algonquins, when we were no longer fearing them and when thoughts of Peace had, in most minds, displaced hostile distrust. Nevertheless, Monsieur our Governor was of opinion that we must risk all for the sake of winning all, as it was to be feared that, if we allowed this opportunity to pass by, our course would cause a rupture of the Peace, as showing too evident distrust on our part. His council agreed with him; the Fathers, likewise, upon whom [25] this blessed lot had fallen, doubted not that it was their duty to depart upon this Mission, since they were undertaking it for the glory of God and for the salvation of souls whose Angels were calling us to their aid, and in whose behalf the charity of Jesus Christ must solicit our help.

Finally, on the nineteenth of September, our Fathers and these Ambassadors left us. I cannot more faithfully set forth the successive events of their journey, and the fruits which God has reaped therefrom than by giving the journal sent us by Father Dablon. [page 59]



HE People named the Agneronnons are called the Iroquois of the lowlands, or the Lower Iroquois; while we speak of [26] the Onontaeronons, and other Nations near these, as the Iroquois of the highlands, or the Upper Iroquois, because they are situated nearer the source of the great Saint Lawrence river and inhabit a country full of mountains. Onontaé—or, as others pronounce it, Onontagué‚—is the chief town of the Onontaeronnons; and thither our course was directed.

Having, then, left Kebec on the 19th of September, 1655, and Montreal on the 7th of October, we ascended the Saint Louys rapids; these are formed by currents of water intercepted by rocks that extend for about a league. The passage being rather rough and difficult, we made only four leagues that first day. On the next, we walked a quarter of a league from our halting-place, to join some of our Savages, who had started out ahead of us, in order to have time, while waiting for us, to make some Canoes. We passed the rest of the day with them, waiting for them.

On the 9th, we crossed the Lake named [27] after Saint Louys, and situated in the very middle of the [page 61] bed of the Saint Lawrence river. This great stream forms Lakes in some places, by expanding its waters over flats and shallows, and then gathering them together again into its channel.

On the 10th, which was Sunday, we had the consolation of celebrating Holy Mass. While our guides were waiting for the rest of their number, we quickly erected an Altar and what might be called a living Chapel, since it was formed of foliage. Wine we made from the native grapes, borne in considerable abundance by the wild Vines. Our devotions finished, we embarked; we had proceeded scarcely a league, when we met some Sonontouaronnon hunters, who told us that their Nation was to send an Embassy to the French toward Autumn—which they did.

On the 12th, we ascended many rapids by dint of hard paddling; and in the evening, instead of resting after our conflict with these currents, which extend for about five leagues, we were forced to watch [28] and keep guard; for we had caught sight of some Agneronons, great enemies of the Hurons, of whom our band was partly composed.

On the r 13th, we made small progress, because, our provisions failing, our hunters and fishers went to seek their living and ours in the woods and streams.

The 14th. Both fishing and hunting failing, our provisions being very short, and our appetites sharpened by hunger, we devoured a wild cow, or species of hind,—these animals having horns like the stag's, and not like those of our European bull. That poor animal had drowned, and her flesh smelled very [page 63] badly; but appetite is an excellent Cook, who, although he flavored this dish with neither salt, pepper, nor cloves, yet made us relish it highly. Let us say, rather, that the zeal and ardor which we feel for winning these poor people to God, imparts to all difficulties encountered a savor so sweet [29] that we find, in truth, dulcedinem in forti—" sweetness in bitterness."

The 15th. God made us pass from scarcity to abundance by giving our hunters eight bears. Straightway, we saw almost all our men turned butchers and cooks, while all around us was to be seen nothing but meat, fat, and skins. Four pots were boiling constantly; and, when knives and teeth were called into service, no one asked for bread or wine, salt or sauce. True, bear's flesh is Very good in such circumstances without condiments. Rain coming on at this point forced our famished company to spend the whole day in recuperating, which they did without the grief of losing fine weather.

On the 17th, the plenty continued; our men killed thirty bears, one man killing ten as his share. One of the ceremonies of the feast that followed this great slaughter was the drinking of bear's fat after the meal, as one drinks hippocras in France. Then they all rubbed themselves from head to foot [30] with that oil—for, in truth, bear's fat when melted resembles oil.

During the night of the 18th and 19th, we were diverted by an amusing incident. One of our savages awoke at midnight, all out of breath, trembling, crying out, and tossing about like a maniac. We thought at first that he had the falling sickness, so [page 65] violent were his convulsions. We ran to him and tried to soothe him; but he so redoubled his cries and his frenzy that the rest were frightened and hid the weapons, lest he might gain possession of them. While some prepared a potion for his cure, the others held him as well as they could; but he escaped from their hands and, running away, leaped into the river, where he acted most strangely. He was followed and dragged out, and a fire was made for him. He said he was very cold, yet to get warm he withdrew from the fire, and took his position near a tree. The medicine that had been prepared was offered to him, but he did not think it suited to his ailment. "Give it to that child," (said he,) pointing to a bear's skin [31] stuffed with straw. They had to obey him, and pour it down the animal's throat. Up to that time, every one had been anxious; but finally, when he had been thoroughly questioned concerning his ailment, he said that he dreamed that a certain animal, whose nature it is to plunge into water, had awakened him and jumped into his stomach; that, in order to fight the creature, he had leaped into the river; and that he was determined to vanquish it. Then all fear was changed to laughter. Still, it was necessary to cure the man's diseased imagination; they all, therefore, pretended to be mad like him, and to have to fight animals which plunge into the water. Thereupon, they prepared to take a sweat, in order to induce him to do so with them. While he was crying and singing at the top of his voice in the little tent used as a sweat-box, and imitating the cry of the animal with which he was contending, they too began, every man of them, to cry and sing in [page 67] imitation of the animals with which they were supposed to be afflicted,—all, in time with their song, beating that wretched man. [32] What confusion!—a score of voices imitating ducks, teals, and frogs; and what a spectacle, to see people counterfeiting madness in order to cure a madman! Finally, they succeeded; for after our man had perspired well and become thoroughly tired, he lay down on his mat and slept as peacefully as if nothing had happened. His ailment, coming in a dream, disappeared like a dream in his sleep. He who deals with pagan Savages is in danger of losing his life through a dream.

On the 19th, we advanced barely 3 leagues.

On the 20th, we passed the falls of the Lake, after dragging our canoes through four or five rapids in the space of half a league. The current here is strong, and extremely turbulent.

Early on the 24th, we reached Lake Ontario, at the entrance to which five stags were killed, toward evening. Nothing further was needed to arrest our company's progress. 4e contemplated at leisure the beauty of this Lake, which is midway between Montréal and Onontagué. It marks, [3 3J however, the end of by far the more difficult half. Furious rapids must be passed, which serve as the outlet of the Lake; then one enters a beautiful sheet of Water, sown with various Islands distant hardly a quarter of a league from one another. It is pleasant to see the herds of cows or deer swimming from isle to isle. Our hunters cut them off, on their return to the mainland, and lined the entire shore with them, leading them to death whithersoever they chose. [page 69]

On the 25th, we advanced 8 leagues up the Lake's mouth, which is barely three-quarters of a league wide.

We entered the Lake itself on the 26th, proceeding seven or eight leagues. Such a scene of awe-inspiring beauty I have never beheld,—nothing but islands and huge masses of rock, as large as cities, all covered with cedars and firs. The Lake itself is lined with high crags, fearful to behold, for the most part overgrown with cedars. Toward evening, we crossed from the North to the South side.

[34] On the 27th, we proceeded 12 good leagues through a multitude of Islands, large and small, after which we saw nothing but water on all sides. In the evening, we met a party of Sonontouaronon hunters, who were eager to see us; and, in order to do so more at their ease, they invited us to a feast of Indian corn and beans, cooked in clear water, without seasoning. This dish has its charms, when flavored with a bit of genuine love.

Toward 9 o'clock on the morning of the 29th, we arrived at Otihatangué, where we were offered the kettle of welcome, and all crowded about to see us eat. Otiatangué is a river emptying into Lake Ontario, narrow at its mouth but very wide, as a rule, for the rest of its course. It flows through meadows, which it fertilizes and cuts up into many islands, high and low, all suitable for raising grain. Such is the richness of this stream that it yields at all seasons various kinds of fish. In the spring, as soon as the snows [35] melt, it is full of gold-colored fish; next come carp, and finally the achigen. The latter is a flat fish, half a foot long, and of very fine flavor. Then comes the brill; and, at the end of May, when [page 71] strawberries are ripe, sturgeon are killed with hatchets. All the rest of the year until winter, the salmon furnishes food to the Village of Onontaé. We made our bed last night on the shore of a Lake where the natives, toward the end of winter, break the ice and catch fish,—or, rather, draw them up by the bucketful. This was our first lodging in the country of the Onontaeronnons, who received us with profuse demonstrations of friendship. A score of Hurons, who were here fishing, showed their joy at seeing Father Chaumonot, some throwing themselves upon his neck, others inviting him to a feast, and still others sending him presents. " Public Prayers must be held, " said one of them; " the cabin is too small, and it is not a thing to be kept secret." And, indeed, the infidels present [36] took no offense. The Father hears Confessions, and instructs these poor people, who have not heard God's name since their capture. The Hurons of the Village of Contareia, who, because of their strong aversion to the Faith, never allowed themselves to be instructed, are already beginning to yield, lending an attentive ear to the Father's words. So true is it that afflictio dat intellectum.

The Father met here Otohenha, the host of the late Father Garnier and of Father Garreau, when they visited the Tobacco nation. He was so overjoyed at seeing the Father that at first he could not speak, and was obliged to defer until another time the narration of his adventures, which were as follows: When, with all his family and Ondoaskoua, daughter of the good René‚, he was on a journey,—conveying a canoe laden with skins, and bearing resents from two Captains of his country, who asked [page 73] for a dwelling-place at Kebec,—he unluckily met with the Onontaheronons. His entire family was captured, and scattered in [37] different cabins. A woman of their number, being secretly warned that the relatives of him for whom she had been given intended to burn her, fled into the woods with her child, after René‚ had Baptized it.

No less sad was his account of the death of that famous Marthe Gohatio, whose piety is so well known. It was God's will to try her very severely. Having gone to war last year, our narrator said,. against the Cat nation, in company with the Onontaheronons, upon taking and sacking a Village, he found the good René‚ Sondiouanen among the dead,. and his daughter among the prisoners, together with this Marthe of whom we are speaking. It was an occasion for mutual encouragement to keep their promise to God and to die in the profession of the Faith. Poor Marthe, who, because of a swollen knee, and a little child, whom she had much difficulty in carrying, was hardly able to keep pace with the victors, was cruelly burnt on the way. Two of her children escaped, indeed, from the Onontaheronons; but they have never been [38] heard of. It is pitiful to hear these poor people tell about their servitude. Many were killed, even by those who had given them their lives,—only a slight disobedience or an illness being necessary to provoke a hatchet-stroke on the head.

On the 30th, we left the water, and prepared for our trip overland to Onontagué‚. In the afternoon, there appeared 60 Oneoutchoueronon Warriors, on their way to fight the so-called Neds percés, beyond the rapids. They were led by Atondatochan, the [page 75] same who came to Montréal in the second Embassy sent by the village of Oneout. He is a man of fine appearance, and an eloquent speaker. He begged us to stay here one day longer, that he might learn our errand.

These Warriors having all assembled on the 31st, Father Chaumonot, after the ceremonies customary on such occasions, addressed Atondatochan; he said, first, that he congratulated himself and thanked God at seeing that great man, whose voice had rung out so loud at Montréal [39] that it was still to be heard there, so great was its strength. In the second place, he said that he was led to visit that country in order to secure the fulfillment of his promise, to speak from that time but the same language, to have but one Sun, and one heart,—in short, to be thenceforth brothers These two clauses were received with the customary applause, and the faces of all showed how much they enjoyed this speech. In the third place, as the report had spread hither that peace had been concluded between the French and Annieronons without including the Algonquins and Hurons, the Father added that he had come to negotiate a genuine peace between all parties. And, in the fourth place, he presented 1500 porcelain beads, in order to solicit kind treatment for the two Frenchmen who were among those whom they were going to fight. He also prayed the maker of all things to watch over Atondatochan's expedition. We had determined to make him a considerable present to induce him to stop his soldiers; but learned privately that we would certainly have [40] been refused, because of their keen resentment at the loss of some of their number, which they were bent on [page 77] revenging at any cost. After the Father had spoken for half an hour, the Chief began the song of response; and all commenced to sing, in wondrous harmony, in a manner somewhat resembling our plain-chant. The first song said that it would take all the rest of the day to thank the Father for so good a speech as he had made them. The second was to congratulate him upon his journey and his arrival. They sang a third time to light him a fire, that he might take possession of it. The fourth song made us all relatives and brothers; the fifth hurled the hatchet into the deepest abyss, in order that peace might reign in all these countries; and the sixth was designed to make the French masters of the river Ontiahantagué‚. At this point the Captain invited the salmon, brill, and other fish, to leap into our nets, and to fill that river [41] for our service only. He told them they should consider themselves fortunate to end their lives so honorably; named all the fishes of that river, down to the smallest, making a humorous address to each kind; and added a thousand things besides, which excited laughter in all those present. The seventh song pleased us still more, its purpose being to open their hearts, and let us read their joy at our coming. At the close of their songs, they made us a present of two thousand porcelain beads. Then the Father raised his voice, and told the Chief that his fine powers of speech would ever increase in volume; that, hitherto, they had resounded through all the confines of Lake Ontario, but, in future, they would speed across the greatest of all Lakes, and be heard as thunder throughout France. At this the Captain and all his followers were extremely pleased. They then [page 79] invited us to the feast which concluded the ceremonies.

We started overland for Onontagué‚ on the 1st of November, meeting on the way a good Huron woman named [42 ] Therese Oionhaton. This poor woman, upon learning of the Father's arrival, came from her home, three leagues distant, to wait for him as he passed. Her joy was great at seeing the black Gowns once more before her death. The Father asked her whether the little child whom she held in her arms were Baptized, and by whom. She replied that she herself had Baptized it, with these words: " Jesus, take pity on my child. 1 Baptize thee, my little one, that thou mayst be blessed in Heaven. " Thereupon the Father instructed her, Confessed her, and comforted her. At the end of five good leagues, we passed the night by the side of a brook, and broke camp at dawn on the 2nd of November. After making six or 7 leagues, we lodged at our invariable hostelry, namely, the beautiful Star, leaving it on the 3rd, before Sunrise. On the way, the Father met the sister of that Therese of whom we have just spoken; with tears in her eyes she told him her misfortunes. " 1 had two children in my captivity," said she; " but alas! they were slaughtered [43] by those to whom they had been given; and I am in daily fear of a like fate, having death ever before my eyes. " We had to console and Confess her, leaving her very soon in order to follow our guides, who were leading us that day to Tethiroguen, a river which has its source in the Lake called Goienho. Oneiout, a Village of one of the Upper Iroquois Nations, is at the head of this Lake, which, narrowing, becomes the river Tethiroguen, and, further down, forms a water fall [page 81] or cascade, a pike's length in height, called Ahaoueté .As soon as we had reached this stream, the more notable men among a large number whom we found fishing there came to salute us, and then led us to the most comfortable cabins. On the 4th of November, we covered about six leagues, still on foot and encumbered with our small baggage. We passed the night in a field, 4 leagues from Onontagué. [page 83]



N the 5th of November, 1655, as we were continuing our journey, a Captain of note, named Gonaterezon, came a good league to meet us. He made us halt, pleasantly congratulated us upon our arrival, put himself at the head of our Company, and gravely led us to a spot a quarter of a league from Onontagué, where the Elders of the country awaited us When we had seated ourselves beside them, they offered us the best dishes they had, especially some Squashes cooked in the embers. While we were eating, one of the Elders, a Captain named Okonchiarennen, arose, imposed silence, and harangued us a good quarter of an hour. He said, among other things, that we were very welcome; our coming had been earnestly desired and long awaited;. and, since [45] the young men, who breathed only war, had themselves asked for and procured peace, it was for them, the Elders, to lay aside their arms and to ratify and embrace it in all sincerity, as they did. He added that only the Agnieronnon was bent on darkening the Sun, which we made so bright by our approach; and he alone generated clouds in the air, at the very time when we dissipated them; but all the efforts of that envious one would fail, and they would finally have us in their midst. Courage, then; we were to take possession of our domains, and enter our new home with all assurance. After [page 85] the speaker had dilated upon this theme, and spoken in what seemed a rather affected manner, the Father made answer, that his speech was a very agreeable draught to us, and took away all the fatigue of our journey; that he came on Onnontio's behalf, to satisfy their demands; and that he doubted not that they would be content when they learned his errand. All the People listened with attention and [46] admiration, delighted to hear a Frenchman speak their language so well. Then he who had Introduced us arose, gave the signal, and led us through a great crowd of people,—some of whom were drawn up in rows to see us pass through their midst, while others ran after us, and still others offered us fruit, until we came to the Village, the streets of which were carefully cleaned and the cabin-roofs crowded with children. At length, a large cabin which had been prepared for us received us, and also all the people it could hold.

After resting a little, we were invited to a feast of bear's meat, but excused ourselves on the plea that it was Friday. This, however, did not prevent us from being treated, in different places, all the rest of the day, to beaver and fish.

Very late in the evening, the Elders held a Council in our cabin, where one of them, after greeting us on behalf of all the nation, made us two presents. One of these was 500 porcelain beads, to [47] wipe our eyes, wet with tears shed over the murders committed in our country that year; and, as grief causes loss of voice, having, he said, clearly perceived our weakness of utterance upon our arrival, he added a second present of 500 beads, to strengthen our lungs, to the phlegm from our throats, and to make [page 87] our voices clear, free, and strong. The Father thanked them for their good will, saying that Onnontio and Achiendasé‚—the names of Monsieur the Governor and of the Father Superior of our Missions, respectively—had their eyes turned toward Onontagué in order to see our condition from Kebec. He then presented to them 2000 beads, that they might open the door of the cabin where they had lodged us, in order that all the French might see the kind treatment we received, the beautiful mats upon which we reposed, and the pleasant faces greeting us. They were delighted with this compliment.

On the following day, November 6th, we were invited at dawn to [48] various feasts, which lasted all the morning; but this did not prevent the Father from visiting some sick persons, who promised to receive instruction if they recovered.

On the 7th, Sunday, a secret Council of 15 Captains was held, to which he was called, after he had directed the prayers of 20 persons who presented themselves to him. In this assembly, they said to the Father: 1. That Agochiendagueté‚—who is, as it were, the King of this country—and Onnontio had voices of equal power and firmness, and that nothing could sever so suitable a tie, which held them in such close union. 2. They would give some of their most active young men to conduct home the Huron Ambassadors who had come with us to treat of Peace. Thirdly, they begged that Onnontio might be informed that, even if some one of their own people should be ill-treated or even killed by the Annieronnons, yet that would not hinder the alliance; and they desired the same assurance on Onnontio's part, in case any ill befell [49] the French from the same [page 89] quarter. In the fourth place, as they had learned that the most acceptable thing they could do, in Onnontio's eyes, would be to inform him that Autumn that they had erected a Chapel for the Believers, they said that, to please him, they would take steps to that end at the earliest moment. In reply to this Clause, the Father took the word, and told them that they had discovered how to win the heart and the entire good will of Monsieur the Governor. All gave a shout of approval, with which the Council ended.

Toward evening, conversing familiarly with the Father, they asked him to tell them a little about France; and he, embracing an opportunity so favorable to his designs, showed them that France had formerly been subject to the same errors as themselves, but that God had opened our eyes through the mediation of his Son. Then, in explaining the great mystery of the Incarnation, he refuted all the calumnies current in their country against the Faith. So skillfully and agreeably was this done that, though he spoke for a good hour and a half, [50] they showed no sign of weariness. The council was followed by a feast, and an apology for the inferiority of Onontagué's entertainment compared with that given to their Ambassadors at Kebec. The day closed with a large gathering of people who came, some to pray to God, and others to satisfy their curiosity. [page 91]



LL the First day was spent, partly in feasting, partly in negotiating peace for the Algonquins; and, as this was the most difficult matter, it demanded the most serious deliberation. For that reason, the Father notified the Elders that he had a private communication to make to them. When they were assembled, he addressed them to the following effect:

  1. The Huron question being closed, he said no more about it; but he assured them that the Algonquins would send an [51] Embassy the next Spring, if they saw their minds inclined to peace.
  2. When the Hurons should have planted their Villages near us, the Algonquins also would wish to visit us.
  3. In the third place, in order to be fully assured of the Onnontaeronnons' desire for peace, the Algonquins hoped to see some of their captive nephews returned, since they themselves had so freely released their prisoners, at the request of the governor of Montréal, and had sent them back with presents,—to which, however, no response had been made.
  4. In the fourth place, if they wished the peace to be General, they Must cease to raise the hatchet against the Nation of the Nez percez. The answer was, that they would deliberate on these four Points.

On the evening of the same day, some thirty Elders, who had gathered in our cabin, invited the [page 93] Father, as if by way of diverting him, to tell them something entertaining. For a full hour the Father talked to them on [52] St. Paul's Conversion, with which they were so delighted that they begged him to continue,—and, above all, to tell them something about the beginning of the world. He did so; and he also preached on the chief mysteries of our Religion, with such success that, at the close, one of the company began to pray in public to the maker of all things; while two others asked what they must do to become believers.

On the 9th, while the Father was confessing a Savage in a cabin, he perceived opposite him a child of four years, who was, as he saw, very ill. He administered some remedies and baptized it, thus gathering the first-fruit which God put into his hands. In the afternoon, there came two Deputies from the Iroquois of the Village of Oneiout, asking leave to be present at the Council. In the evening, a large assembly was held in our cabin; and, after a long speech, one of the company, addressing the Father, presented to him a collar of a thousand beads, in order to make us share their joy at our coming. The answer was that, as Onnontio and Agochiendaguesé‚ were now one, [53] the Onneioutchoueronons must be children of the former as well as of the latter. A present was made for their adoption, which pleased them beyond measure.

On the eleventh, while the Father was laboring to restore the ancient foundations of the Huron Church, the others visited the salt Spring, four leagues distant and near the Lake called Gannentaa. This is the site chosen for the French settlement, on account of its central position among the, four Iroquois [page 95] Nations,—being accessible to them by canoe, over Rivers and Lakes which make communication free and very easy. Hunting and fishing render this position an important one; for, besides the fish caught there at different seasons, eels are so abundant in the Summer that a man can harpoon as many as a thousand in one night; and, as for game, which is always abundant in the Winter, turtle-doves from all the Country around flock thither toward Spring, in so great numbers that they are caught in nets. The spring, from which very good salt is made, issues within a beautiful Prairie, [54] surrounded by full-grown forests. At a distance of 80 or 100 paces from this salt spring is found another of fresh water; and these two, though of opposite characters, have their sources in the bosom of the same hill.

On the 12th, a prisoner from the Cat Nation was brought in, to bear the brunt of these people's rage, no quarter being now given between the two tribes. He was a child of nine or ten years, and was to be burnt in a short time, which made the Father resolve to attempt the rescue of his soul from the fires of hell, not being able to save his body. But, the hatred of these barbarians being so excessive that they are unwilling that their enemies should be happy even in the other world, it required adroitness to instruct and baptize this poor unfortunate in secret. The Father, accordingly, after seeing and speaking with him, feigned thirst and was given some water. In drinking, he purposely allowed some drops to run into his handkerchief,—one was enough to open Heaven's gates,—and baptized the boy before he was burnt. He [55] was only two hours in torment, because of his youth; but he displayed such fortitude [page 97] that not a tear or a cry escaped him from amid the flames.

The 14th, which was Sunday, could not have been better begun than with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, which we offered on a little Altar in an Oratory contrived in the cabin of Teotonharason, one of the women who had gone down to Kebec with the Ambassadors. She is esteemed here for her rank and her possessions, but especially because she has declared herself openly for the Faith, Professing it publicly and instructing all her family. Already she has made urgent request for Baptism for herself, her mother, and her daughter, having explained to them the mysteries of our Religion and taught them to Pray.

Toward 10 o'clock of the same day, which had been assigned for making the presents, when all was ready,—and when we had said Prayers, publicly and on our knees, [56] while all the assembly maintained a profound silence,—word came that the Deputies from Oiogoien were entering the Village. We were forced to break off there, and prepare to receive them in a manner becoming their rank. The Father made them two presents, by way of greeting; they responded with two others, and added a third as a petition that he would postpone the ceremony to the morrow, as the day was far advanced. This was granted. [page 99]



N Monday, November 15th, between nine and ten o'clock in the morning,—after a little dying infant had been secretly sent to Paradise by the waters of Baptism,—all the Elders and the people assembled in a public place, in compliance with our request, as we wished to satisfy the general curiosity. We began, as on the preceding day, with public Prayers. (57] Then the Father adopted the people of Oiogoën as his children. After this, he displayed a large porcelain collar, saying that his mouth was Onnontio's, and the words he was about to utter were the words of the French, Hurons, and Algonquins, who all spoke through him.

The first present was intended to hush the cries heard everywhere by the Father, and to wipe away the tears that he saw coursing down their cheeks. But, since it did not suffice to wipe them away, and as he could not dry up this stream while the source was still running, he offered a second present to calm their minds, the seat of all these griefs; and, as the seat of the mind is in the head, he made them a crown of the proffered collar, which he put on the head of each one successively. At first, they were surprised at this novelty; they were pleased, how ever, when they saw the Father holding a little kettle, full of an excellent beverage, of which he [page 101] made them all drink, as a third present—in order to dispel their grief and [58] apply the remedy to their very hearts and bowels. This was accompanied by a beautiful collar. And, in order to wipe away the blood, and implant joy in every breast, leaving no trace of sadness anywhere, the Father presented four Beaver-skins to the four Iroquois Nations, one for each.

The 9th present affected them even more. He brought forward a small tree, whose upper branches bore the names of their deceased Captains, and were lopped off to signify their death; but the tree had many other branches, strong and in full leaf, representing their children, through whom these departed Heroes would be restored to life in the persons of their descendants. This tree attracted much more attention than the beads accompanying it. The two following gifts were to assure them that Annenrai and Tehaionhacoua, two famous Captains killed in war,—the former of whom had taken [59] an oath of fidelity before the Governor of Montréal, and the latter had died invoking Heaven,—to give assurance, I say, that these two brave men were not dead, but continued as firmly united with the French as the collars, presented in their name, were inseparably attached to each other.

The eleventh present pleased them still more; for the Father, drawing out his handkerchief, showed them therein, on the one side the ashes of a certain Teotegouisen, buried at three Rivers, and on the other those of the French; and, mixing them together, he declared that the Iroquois and the French were but one, both before and after death. [page 103] He added a second collar to the one accompanying these ashes, to restore that man to life. Here the applause was very great, and they were eager to see and hear what would follow. The most beautiful collar of all was produced by the Father, when he said that all he had thus far offered was but a lenitive and slight alleviation for [60] their woes; he could not prevent them from being ill, or from dying, but he had a very sovereign remedy for all sorts of afflictions That was properly what brought him to their country, and they had given excellent proof of their good sense in going down to Kebec in quest of him. This great remedy was the Faith, which he came to proclaim to them, and which they would doubtless receive with a favor equal to their wisdom in asking for it. The Father then preached in what was really the Italian style, having a sufficient space for walking about and for proclaiming g with pomp the word of God. .After that, it can, I think, be said to have been announced to all the Peoples of those countries. Though he should have, as recompense for all these labors, only the consolation of having preached Jesus Christ before so fine an audience, he would have reason to be fully satisfied. At any rate, his Sermon was attentively followed, cries of approval being heard from time to time.

The addition of another present was necessary, to [61] exonerate the Faith from the calumnies circulated against it by the devil's agents. In order to impress his meaning upon their minds, he showed them a fair sheet of white paper, symbolizing the integrity, innocence, and purity of the Faith; and another, all soiled and blackened, whereon were written the [page 105] calumnies uttered against it. The latter sheet was torn and burnt according as these lies were answered and refuted. The Father proceeded with so much zeal and ardor, and with such a torrent of forcible words, that all appeared very deeply moved.

As a relief to all this, there followed the present of the Ursuline Mothers of Kebec, who made a cordial offer to receive into their house the little girls of the country, for education in piety and in the fear of God. Then came the present of the Hospital Mothers, who had quite recently built a large and splendid Hospital, for the careful reception and charitable nursing of any sick persons of their Nation who might be at Kebec.

[62] With the seventeenth present we asked that a Chapel be erected as soon as possible, in which we might perform our functions with freedom and propriety; and, with the eighteenth, that the supplies be provided necessary for us during our Winter's labors among them.

The four following were a pledge that, in the following Spring, some young Frenchmen would come, and they must then launch their canoes early and go to receive them; and that these, upon their arrival, would erect a palisade for the public defense. They were also advised to prepare at the same time the Mat for receiving the Algonquins and Hurons who would follow the French. At this news, a shout, louder than usual, was given in expression of their sentiments.

To please the Onnontagueronnons, the next two presents were an invitation to the two other Nations to move their Villages nearer, in order the better to share the advantage of the vicinity of the French. [page 107] We were obliged to add a present [63] exhorting them to stay the Annieronnon's hatchet; and another to unite their minds, that henceforth they might be as one.

The first of the four following, which were offered in behalf of the Algonquins, was a pledge that the latter would send an embassy the coming Spring; the second, that, when the French and Hurons should have become settled, the Algonquins would probably follow them; the third, that they would like to see again some one of their captive nephews; while the fourth was to remind them of the presents given by the Ondataouaouats, upon delivering thirteen prisoners to the French of Montréal.

We felt obliged to make one more present, of considerable value, for a young Frenchman named Charles Garmant, who has been for some years among the Oneioutchronnons. The Chief of that Nation was addressed by the Father, and told that he had too much sense not to see what course to pursue in the matter; that he, the Father, would not picture to him the pleasure he would afford Onnontio and all the [64] French, by restoring their brother to them; that he saw well enough what joy his relatives would feel at his return; and, therefore, all that was left to his discretion.

With the present next to the last, the Father cleared his path for walking, with head erect, through all the Iroquois Villages, and gave them like liberty to traverse the entire country of the French.

Finally, the last present was given in order to recapitulate all that had been said, and to impress it so firmly on their minds, that their ears should never [page 109] again open to any calumnies invented by the enemies of the public peace.

The Council closed with repeated applause on both sides, and a brief reply that on the following day a fuller response would be rendered. It is past belief how the Father's speech and his engaging ways charmed these people. " Though he had spoken till evening, " said some, " our ears would never have been full, and our hearts would still have been hungry [65] for his words. " Others added that the Dutch had neither sense nor tongues; they had never heard them mention Paradise or Hell; on the contrary, they were the first to incite them to wrong-doing. The rest expressed themselves in some other way, but all were unanimous in saying, in their own tongue, Nunquam sic loquutus est homo—which appeared plainly in the issue; for the chief of the deputies from Oiogoen came to the Father, after the Council, to say that he wished to adopt him as his brother—a mark of great confidence with these Peoples.

In the afternoon, when the Father had retired to a neighboring wood, in order to say his prayers in quiet, four Iroquois women went in quest of him for the purpose of being instructed; and, before evenng, nine of them did the same, among whom was the sister of the chief of all the Captains. Although some of the men already make public profession of prayer, yet they are more bashful,—as they admitted on that very evening, when, coming in great number [66] to our cabin, and hearing the Father speak for two hours without wearying them, they confessed that they indeed believed at heart, but dared not yet declare themselves. They added that what made [page 111] them believe was partly their last victory over the Cat Nation, their enemies, when they were only twelve hundred against three or four thousand; and, as they had promised, before the battle to embrace the Faith if they returned victorious, they could not now retract after so successful a triumph. This speech ended, the Father made them all pray to God; and one of the Deputies had the prayer repeated to him several times, that he might learn it by heart. [page 113]



HE sixteenth day was still more successful than those preceding, being appointed for receiving a reply to our presents; and this reply was as favorable as could be desired by the most zealous adherents of our Faith. Early in the morning, while one of us Baptized a sick child in a cabin, the other, after saying holy Mass in our little Oratory, Baptized two young girls, brought thither for the purpose by their parents. The first received the name of Marie Magdeleine, in honor of Madame de la Pelterie, who bears that name, and who gave the first alms for this Mission, even before it was started. The other is the daughter of that Teotanharason, of whom we have already spoken and shall speak again, whose cabin serves us as a Chapel. Those are [68] properly the first two Baptized with some Ceremonies of the Church. After that sacred rite had been performed, toward noon all the notables of the Village assembled in our Cabin, with the Deputies of the other Nations, and all the people that it could hold. They began their acknowledgments with six airs, or chants, which savored nothing of the savage; and expressed very naïvely, by the variation of tones, the different passions which they sought to portray. The first chant was composed of these words: Oh, the beautiful land, the beautiful land, that the French are to occupy! Agochiendaguesé, [page 115] represented by an Elder, who continued just as if the chief himself had been speaking, began alone; then all the rest repeated his exact words and tones, harmonizing remarkably well.

In the second chant, the Chief intoned the words, Good news, very good news; and the others repeated them in the same tone. Then he resumed: In very truth, my brother, in very truth, [69] we are speaking together; in very Truth, we have a message from heaven.

The third chant had an ornament, in the form of a very musical refrain, and was as follows: My brother, I salute thee; my brother, be welcome. Aï; aï, aï, hî. O the beautiful voice, O the beautiful voice That thou hast! Aï; aï, aï, hî. O the beautiful voice, O the beautiful voice That thou hast! Aï; aï, aï, hî.

The fourth chant had another ornament; the Musicians, namely, beat time by striking their feet, hands, and pipes against their mats. This they did in such perfect accord that the sound, so regular, blended with their voices and became a harmony pleasing to the ear. The words were as follows: My brother, I salute thee; again, I salute thee. In all sincerity, and without stimulation, I accept the Heaven that thou hast shown me; yes, I approve it, I accept it.

The fifth time, they sang as follows: Farewell, war; farewell, hatchet.! We have been fools till now, but in future we will be brothers; yes, we will really be brothers.

The final song was composed of these words: [70] Today the great peace is made. Farewell, war; Farewell, arms! For the affair is entirely beautiful. Thou upholdest our Cabins, when thou comest among us.

These songs were followed by four beautiful presents. With the first, Agochiendaguesé, after a long speech testifying his gratitude that he and [page 117] Onnontio were now but one, said that, since the Hurons and Algonquins were Onnontio's children, they must be his also; he therefore adopted them by offering the first two presents, which he cast at the Father's feet.

The third and most beautiful of all the presents offered was a collar of seven thousand beads, which, however, was as nothing compared with his words. " It is the present of the Faith," .said he; " it is to tell thee that I am really a Believer, and to exhort thee not to weary in teaching us. Continue to visit our Cabins, and have patience with our dullness in learning the Prayer. In a word, impress it well. upon our minds [71] and hearts." Thereupon, wishing to make a striking display of his ardor, he took the Father by the hand, raised him and led him out before all the company, and threw himself on his neck in a close embrace. Then, holding the beautiful collar in his hand, he made for him a belt with it,—declaring before Heaven and earth his determination to embrace the Faith as he embraced the Father, and calling all the spectators to witness that this girdle, with which he encircled the Father so closely, symbolized his own future close union with the Believers. He protested and swore again and again that he was sincere in his words.

The Father made the hearers redouble their shouts of approval, as often as this Chief promised to become a believer. Was not that a sight to draw tears from the eyes of the most hardened—to see the head of an infidel Nation making public profession of the Faith, and all his People applauding his action 1 I pray all who shall read this to lift up their hearts to God in behalf of these poor Barbarians. [page 119]

[72] The fourth and last present was little in comparison with the preceding, its purpose being merely to inform the Father that the kettle of the war against the Cat Nation was over the fire; that hostilities would be opened toward Spring; and that the Huron Ambassadors would be dismissed the next day, with an escort of fifteen of the Country's leading men.

After this Captain had finished speaking, the Chief Deputy from Oiogoen arose and made a speech of thanks, of much wit and eloquence, which lasted a good half-hour. The pith of his polite address was, that he and all his Nation deemed themselves greatly obliged to Onnontio for the honor of adoption by him; that they would never become unworthy of that high distinction, or fail to do honor to so illustrious a connection; and that, furthermore, brilliant as it was, it did honor to Onnontio, since neither the speaker nor his people had ever been adopted except by people of rank; yet that this adoption of them by Onnontio crowned all [73] the glory which they derived from all their previous ties and alliances. To show his joy over this glory, the Deputy began a song, which was as pleasing as it was new. All present sang with him, but in a different and a heavier tone, beating time on their mats; while the man himself danced in the midst of them all, performing strange antics,—keeping his whole body in motion; making gestures with his hands, feet, head, eyes, and mouth,—and all this so exactly to the time of both his own singing and that of the others, that the result was admirable. He sang these words, A, a, ha, Gaianderé, gaianderé; that is, translated into Latin, Io, io triumphe. And then, E, e, he, Gaianderé, gaianderé; O, o, ho, [page 121] Gaianderé, gaianderé. He explained what he meant by his Gaianderé, which signifies, among the natives, " something very excellent. " He said that, what we call the Faith, would be called by them Gaianderé; and, to explain it better, he offered his first present of porcelain.

[74] He offered the second in behalf of the Onneioutchronnon, because, as they both were twin brothers, he thought that he, too, ought to thank Onnontio, since he shared the happiness of being adopted by him.

The third was an assurance that the present offered by us the day before, to unite the minds of the Anniehronnons with those of the four other Nations, would be effectual.

The fourth pleased us greatly, being given in declaration that not only the Father, but also his two children, would all become sincere Believers,—meaning, that both the Onnontagueronnon, who is the father, and the Oiogoen and Onneiout, who are his children, would embrace the Faith.

With the fifth, he adopted the Hurons and Algonquins as his brothers; and, with the sixth, promised that the three Nations should unite, and go, in the following Spring, to bring the French and the Savages who should desire to come into their Country.

[75] It was necessary to make a reply to all this, which the Father did in two words, each accompanied by a present. One was to repair the rents made in our Cabin by the people who crowded it every day, and who could not see their fill of us; and the other was to clean the mat on which future Councils between their Country and the French and their Allies were to be held. [page 123]

This beautiful day closed with the teaching of a score of people of the Village, who presented themselves anew in order to pray.

On the seventeenth, after celebrating holy Mass, we were taken out to make measurements for a Chapel. It was erected on the following day, which, by good omen, was the day of the Dedication of the Church of saint Peter and saint Paul. It is true that all our marble and precious metals were only bark. Upon its completion, it was consecrated by the Baptism of three children, to whom the way to Heaven was opened under that bark roof just as well as it is to those who are held [76] over fonts whose arches are of gold and silver. [page 125]



N the twenty-third of the same month of November, the Father, in going about among the Cabins, met a Soul which bore evident signs of its predestination. It was the sister of one of the chief Captains of the place. She had no sooner heard of our Faith, than she wished to prepare her whole family for salvation, begging the Father to Baptize her little daughter at once, and to go as soon as possible to some outlying cabins belonging to her family, there to Baptize her other children. The Father promised to do all this in a short time.

On the twenty-fourth, he was strongly pressed to grant the same favor to [77] Teotonharason's grandmother, the oldest woman in all the Country. The most aged people say that, when they were children, she was already old, and as wrinkled as she appears now; so that she is thought to be well over a hundred years old. God has, doubtless, preserved to her so long a life, to endow her with that which never ends. Upon the Father's showing her the Image of our Lord, she was so delighted with it that, after considering it well, she said in all simplicity to the one represented by the Image: " Courage! Do not forsake me; give me thy Paradise after my death. Courage ! Let us never separate. " We shall witness her Baptism in a few days. [page 127]

We could not refuse the charity which we granted, on the twenty-fifth, to a little orphan girl, a captive, who died soon after receiving this great Blessing. It was rather to yield to the wish of her relatives who, although unbelievers, begged us urgently to go and pray to God over her body. It is incredible how much comfort they received from seeing us kneeling [78] beside the dead body, and hearing that, as she was Baptized, she was leading a blessed life in Heaven.

On the twenty-eighth, the first Sunday in Advent, the first formal Catechism was held in one of the chief Cabins of Onontagué‚, our Chapel being too small. We began with Prayers, recited aloud by those present. Then the Father explained some points of our Belief, and next showed some Images, to aid the imagination, and impress the heart with devotion through the medium of the eyes. Questioning them, one by one, on what had been said, he gave rewards to those who answered correctly In conclusion, some sacred motets were sung,. accompanied by a little violin which harmonized well with the Savages' voices, and left in the minds of all a great desire to attend such lessons again.

We could not better celebrate the Feast of saint Francis Xavier, who performed so many Baptisms, than by conferring this sacrament, the evening before, upon two of the oldest people of the Village, upon two children on the day itself, [79] and upon others during the entire Octave, Baptizing as many as four in one day; so that this great Apostle appears to wish now, at this end of the world, to repeat what of old he so abundantly accomplished, at the other. [page 129]

On the second Sunday in Advent, the Christian Doctrine was continued, as on the first,—with this difference, that, at the close, Baptism was conferred publicly upon Teotonharason's grandmother.

On the seventh of December, the first person Baptized in all that Village died. It was a girl of about twenty years, who, when we came, had long been ill of a consumptive fever. God knew so well how to prepare her through the kindness of the Father—who made her take some remedies, and who often brought her little delicacies—that at last she asked for Baptism. She did so, at first, in the hope of recovery; but she changed her views entirely, when the Father told her that she must prepare to go to Heaven, which she did as if [80] she had lived all her life a Christian,—so much so, that she found no other pleasure during her illness than seeing the Father, who on his part did his utmost to comfort her. He used that poor patient's mat as a closet, to which he retired to recite his Office in quiet, and to perform a part of his other devotions, in all of which the sick girl took a singular pleasure. She expired peacefully, to join, as we think, those of her Nation who had gone before her to Heaven, although her Baptism preceded theirs.

The Catechism was likewise held on the third and fourth Sundays in Advent, but with a larger attendance than before. Their nature is not so barbarous that it cannot be tamed, and made to take pleasure in our ingenious devices for making them enjoy our Mysteries. A good Huron woman, upon hearing explained the joys which God prepares in Heaven for his Elect, in her delight exclaimed: " Ah, my brother, thou piercest my heart; behold the sharp [page 131] sword-thrust which thou givest me. " The [81] Father, surprised at this exclamation, asked her what ailed her. " Dost thou not see plainly what ails me I " she returned. " I must complain of thee, because thou hast not told me before what Paradise is. I grieve now at having been so long ignorant of the great happiness that I hope for, and of the great goodness of him who promises it to me. " Another good old woman showed similar feeling, but in a different way. The Father found her without seeking her,—or, rather, God guided his steps to her when he thought to visit another. She was fruit all ripe for Heaven, only requiring to be plucked. She was also very ill when the Father met her. He told her, among other things, that he did not so much regret that he came too late to apply a remedy to her body, as he deplored the loss of her soul and her inability, after so long a life, to acknowledge the Author of her being. Thereupon, he explained to her some points of our Faith, and showed her the Image of Jesus Christ. She became a Christian immediately. [82] He taught her to pray; and she did so in a way which made it evident that her heart was on her lips; for, while others say their Prayers after the Father and in the same tone of voice, she was bent on singing at each word she uttered. She sang so sweetly, that she charmed those who listened to this Swan, whose soul was on her very lips, ready to fly away to Heaven. Thus she died, soon after her Baptism. What a Providence!

On Christmas eve, the Father took occasion to give a feast to the Village chiefs, in order to make them understand that great Mystery. They heard him very attentively, and one of the fruits of the Sermon [page 133] was, that one of these Captains came early next morning to our Chapel door, and there exhorted those who entered to pray well; then, entering himself, he bade them anew to conduct themselves properly during the service, and to heed well the Father's words. But he did not offer to pray himself, both he and most of the elders turning a deaf ear to God's word. They invite the Father, indeed, to continue his instruction of the young people; [83] but fear of the world and regard for the flesh hold them still in swaddling-clothes, old as they are.

Dreams form one of the chief hindrances to their Conversion; and to these they are so attached that they attribute to them all their past great successes, both in war and in hunting. Now, as they well know that the belief in dreams is incompatible with the Faith, they become even more obstinate; especially, as they are aware of the fact that, the moment the Hurons received the Faith and abandoned their dreams, their ruin began, and their whole country has ever since been declining to its final total destruction. The devil still circulates false reports, through certain Huron prisoners and renegades, who proclaim that the black gowns will pursue the same course here as with them; that we write down the names of children; that we send them to France, where their bodies are marked with charcoal; and that, in the same ratio as these marks gradually become defaced, the persons bearing them are afflicted with ailments, until at last they die. [89] Gross and ridiculous though this calumny is, the devil does not. fail to use it, to dispute with us the advantage which we are gaining over him. But he has not yet succeeded in preventing the large attendance at Prayers [page 135] every morning; and, in spite of him, in order the better to solemnize the Christmas Festival, we gave its name to a good Iroquois woman, who urgently asked for Baptism; and that of Jeanne to another woman, who, though very sick, dragged herself as far as the Chapel on the day of St. John the Evangelist.

The Father was sent for, but too late, to confer this sacrament upon a poor captive girl of the Cat Nation, who was cruelly murdered by order of her Mistress, whom she displeased by her occasional obstinacy. On the twenty-seventh of December, her Mistress took a notion to get rid of her; therefore, without much deliberation, she commissioned a young man to kill her. Taking his hatchet, he followed this poor victim on her way to the woods; [85] but he changed his mind, and came back to do the deed in the sight of all. Accordingly, he allowed her to return, and, when she was at the entrance to the Village, struck her on the head with his hatchet, felling her to the ground, apparently dead. Yet, she was not mortally wounded, and was therefore carried into a neighboring Cabin to have her wound dressed. When, however, the murderer was taunted with his want of skill in head-splitting, he returned, snatched his prey from those who held her, dragged her away, and gave her more blows which killed her. This murder did not startle the children playing near by, or even divert them from their game, so accustomed are they to the sight of these poor captives' blood. Toward evening, the murderer, or some one else, went crying aloud through the streets and cabins, that such and such a person had been put to death; whereupon all began to make a [page 137] noise with their feet and hands, while some beat with sticks the bark of their cabins, to frighten the soul of the departed and drive it far away. The Preachers of the Gospel are [86] daily exposed to like dangers among these Peoples.

A good Iroquois woman, a Catechumen, who abhorred such cruelty, gave the Father, at about this time, evidence of her attachment to the Faith. Being sought in marriage by one of the leading men of the Country, a brave warrior and a good hunter,—two qualities which here mark a desirable suitor,—she told him at once that, intending to become a good Christian, she would take no Husband who had not the same desire. He promised to seek instruction; and, as he had a strong passion for her, went to find the Father for that purpose. These were fine beginnings. The Catechumen was very glad to win this man to God and to marry him; but, being told by the Father that she could not be united to him, as he already had a wife, she nobly declared that she would not take him, as it was against the Laws of the Religion which she wished to embrace.

Then another man offered himself, with the same advantages and the same disqualification, [87] and she bravely rejected him. Those were two severe assaults for a Catechumen. She was told that now she must not hope to marry, as there was no unmarried man in the Village; that she must not expect any more such good offers; and that she would be universally censured. But she held firm, bravely clinging to her first resolution; and what she did a month later well shows the spirit with which she embraced Christianity. One of the chief Captains of the Village, a man of proud and arrogant bearing, [page 139] sought her one evening in her cabin, for the purpose of seducing her to evil—something so common among these Iroquois that it is done almost openly and without shame. The poor woman heeded not the rank of that 'wicked man; she refused him, gently at first; and, when he persisted, she repulsed him. He begged, threatened, flew into a passion; and the poor woman, seeing him carried away with wrath, escaped, fled into a cabin where the Father was, told him all, and made a fresh vow to die [88] rather than break her promise. To resist sin, to fight for virtue,—those are the acts which distinguish a true Faith. The deed brought her honor, all agreeing that she deserved to become a Christian, and that she had always led a very innocent life.

The first person Baptized this year, 1656, was assaulted just as severely, but in another way. 1 allude to that Teotonharason, who made so good a beginning, as we have related, and who was one of the first to preach the Faith in her Country and plant it in her cabin, 'where Prayers are held regularly every day, to the Father's great gratification. Had she listened to the false reports circulated against the Faith by certain Hurons, she would long ago have abandoned the whole matter. In order to try her, God suffered the Pagans predictions to be verified in her case. " As soon as thou hast joined the Believers, " they said to her, " thou wilt be attacked with illness, and all thy family will be visited with misfortunes and calamities. " Strange to relate, [89] at the height of her devotion, while we were using her cabin as a Chapel and as a place for holding Catechisms, she was seized with a malignant disease, and, at the same time, received word that her mother, [page 141] a good Catechumen, had broken her leg—all this, on the very eve of her grandmother's Baptism. To crown her misfortunes, or her blessings, a little boy of hers, between ten and twelve years old,—who had nothing of the savage either in disposition or appearance, who had a wonderful gift of prayer, and who knew the whole Catechism perfectly, was taken with a slow fever, from which he wasted away before our eyes. Through all this, Teotonharason remained firm; Prayers were continued in her cabin, in which she joined, though lying on her mat; the poor child, weak and wasted though he was, always drew near to the Father to pray and to answer his Catechism; and, finally, the poor woman, not to lose the reward of her sufferings, received Baptism on the 23rd of January. [page 143]



HOSE who had prophesied misfortunes for the family of which we have just spoken, if it received the Doctrine of Jesus Christ, thought they had a strong argument against the Faith when they saw those poor people within two finger-breadths of death; but they knew not the power of him, qui deducit ad inferos et reducit—who leads men to the mouth of the tomb, and brings them back again, when he chooses. God sometimes sends disease simply to make his glory manifest. Theotonharason's illness was of this nature. Every one thought her incurable, and she herself expected to die; but, as soon as she was [91] Baptized, her strength returned, showing that this Sacrament had imparted life to body as well as to soul. Her son's cure was still more miraculous. The poor child was wasting and dying away; a consumptive fever left him naught but bones; we were filled with compassion, seeing him reduced to a mere skeleton; and yet he attended Prayers every day, with a love and devotion that was apparent in face and speech. At the height of his illness, the Father gave him holy Baptism, fearing lest he should die without that sacrament. Marvelous to relate, no sooner had he received it, than the fever, as if in fear of those sacred Waters, [page 145] left him on the instant, never to return. He is permanently cured, and, in short, enjoys better health than any of his comrades.

We have witnessed something still more wonderful. This Theotonharason had two Aunts, one of whom was at death's door, while the other was ill [92] with an obstinate fever which defied every remedy. Our Neophyte told them that the true remedy for their ailments was Baptism, which had cured both herself and her son. The poor invalids summoned the Father and declared to him their wish. He instructed them; they listened; fides ex auditu—" the Faith entered by their ears, " and made them think more of Eternity than of health. Being well prepared, they were Baptized by the Father, and the Baptism immediately cured them both, to the astonishment of all. As soon as they were delivered from their diseases of body and of soul, they proclaimed God's marvels everywhere, combating those who attack our Belief and accuse it of all the ills that occur in their Country.

The devil still opposes us with two other enemies,—namely, dreams, as already noted, and the indissolubility of Marriage. Men are told that they will have ill luck if they disregard their dreams; and women, that there will be no more marriages for them if [93] they become Christians, because then they cannot take another husband when they have left a bad one. God will know well how to overcome all these obstacles when he sees fit.

Toward evening of the ninth of January, we were spectators of the most subtle sorcery of the Country, employed for the cure of a sick woman of our cabin who had long been ailing. The Sorcerer entered [page 147] with a Tortoise-shell in his hand, half full of small pebbles,—such are their instruments of magic. He took a seat in the midst of a dozen women who were to help him in banishing the disease, and the neighbors gathered about to see this superstitious ceremony. All it consists in is, that the Magician strikes the Tortoise-shell against a mat, and intones a song, while the women dance about him, in time with his singing and with the noise of the Tortoise-shell. You see them move their feet, arms, head, and entire body, with such violence that great drops of perspiration soon cover their bodies. At the first trial, the disease was not [94] expelled, or at the second, or at the third; this caused the dance to be prolonged far into the night, while the patient's illness abated not a particle.

On the fifteenth, after Baptizing a young Huron in our Chapel, we spent a good part of the morning in observing the holy Sabbath day, teaching, and directing the prayers of our visitors, who came in such numbers as to fill our Chapel—seven times over. As we explain our Mysteries to them; so they at times relate their legends to us. They have an amusing myth touching the creation of mankind on earth. They say that one day the Master of Heaven, plucking up a large tree, made a hole leading from Heaven to earth; and a man of that Country, becoming angry with his wife, threw her into this hole, and so made her fall from Heaven to earth. She was not hurt, however, though she was pregnant with two children, a boy and a girl. Now, by these Twins the earth was peopled. How dark is man's mind when it walks without the torch of the Faith! [page 149]

[95] The calumny circulated by some malicious Hurons is much more dangerous. They say that, in order to take revenge for injuries received from the Iroquois and other Savages, we wish to lead to Heaven as many of them as we can, in order to burn and roast them there at our pleasure; and that this revenge is the sole recompense that we expect in return for all the pains, troubles, hardships, and labors that we undergo in converting them. Oh, how true it is that men judge others according to their own nature and character!

Others, who are not so dull as to be caught by these stupidities, say that the Faith is good for the French, to whom Heaven belongs; but, as for themselves, they have no such high pretensions, and are content, after death, with the abode of their Ancestors. There are some who are not displeased to hear about Heaven, and the pleasures promised to believers; yet they are unwilling to be told of death and Hell, or to be enjoined to set dreams at naught, which to them represent the [96] great Demon and Genius of the Country, to whom all homage is paid, and all sacrifices are rendered, with a fidelity that passes belief. This will be illustrated by what follows.

Not long ago, a man of the Village of Oiogoen saw one night, in his sleep, ten men plunge into the frozen river, entering through a hole made in the ice, and coming out through another. The first thing that he did on waking was to prepare a great feast, to which he invited ten of his friends. They all came; joy and gladness prevailed, with singing, dancing, and every accompaniment of a good feast. " This is well, " said the Master of the feast, " you [page 151] give me pleasure, my brothers, showing by your joy that you like my entertainment. But it is not all; you must show me whether you love me. " Thereupon, he told them his dream, which, however, did not confound them; for, instantly, all ten offered to fulfill it. Accordingly, they went to the river, and pierced the ice, making two holes, [97] fifteen paces apart. The Divers stripped. the first one prepared the way for the others, plunging into one of the holes and coming out successfully at the other. The second did the same, and likewise the rest, until the tenth man's turn came, who paid the penalty for all; he could not find his way out, and perished miserably under the ice.

In the same Village of Oiogoen, there occurred last year an event which caused all the inhabitants much anxiety. One of them, having dreamed that he gave a feast of human flesh, invited all the chief men of the Country to his cabin to hear a matter of importance. When they had assembled, he told them that he was ruined, as he had had a dream impossible of fulfillment; that his ruin would entail that of the whole Nation; and that a universal overthrow and destruction of the earth was to be expected. He enlarged at great length on the subject, and then asked them to guess his dream. All struck wide of the mark, until one man, suspecting the truth said to him: " Thou wishest to give a feast of human Flesh. Here, take my brother; 1 place him in thy hands [98] to be cut up on the spot, and put into the kettle. " All present were seized with Fright, except the dreamer, who replied that his dream required a woman. Superstition went so far, that they adorned a girl with all the riches of the Country,—with [page 153] bracelets, collars, crowns, and all the ornaments used by women,—just as victims of old were decked for immolation; and that poor innocent, not knowing why she was made to look so pretty, was actually led to the place appointed for the sacrifice. .All the people attended to witness so strange a spectacle. The guests took their places, and the public victim was led into the middle of the circle. She was delivered to the Sacrificer, who was the very one for whom the sacrifice was to. be made. He took her;. they watched his actions, and pitied that innocent girl; but, when they thought him about to deal her the death-blow, he cried out: " I am satisfied; my dream requires nothing further. " Is it not a great charity [99] to open the eyes of a people so grossly in error ?

Not only do they believe in their dreams, but they also hold a special festival to the Demon of dreams. This festival might be called the festival of fools, or the Carnival of wicked Christians; for, in both, the devil plays almost the same part, and at the same season. They call this celebration Honnonouaroria, and the Elders announce it through the Village streets. We witnessed the ceremony on the twenty-second of February, of this year, 1656. Immediately upon the announcement of the festival by these public cries, nothing was seen but men, women, and children, running like maniacs through the streets and cabins,—this, however, in a far different manner from that of Masqueraders in Europe, the greater number being nearly naked, and apparently insensible to the cold, which is well—nigh unbearable to those who are most warmly clothed. Some, indeed, give no farther evidence of their folly, than to run [page 155] thus half naked through all the cabins; but others are mischievous. [100] Some carry water, or something worse, and throw it at those whom they meet; others take the firebrands, coals, and ashes from the fire, and scatter them in all directions without heeding on whom they fall; others break the kettles, dishes, and all the little domestic outfit that they find in their path. Some go about armed with javelins, bayonets, knives, hatchets, and sticks, threatening to strike the first one they meet; and all this continues until each has attained his object and fulfilled his dream. In this connection, two things are worthy of note.

First, it sometimes happens that one is not bright enough to guess their thoughts; for they are not clearly put forth, but are expressed in riddles, phrases of covert meaning, songs, and occasionally in gestures alone. Consequently, a good Oedipus is not always to be found. Yet, they will not leave a place until their thought is divined; and, if they meet with delay, or a disinclination or [101] inability to guess it, they threaten to burn up everything,—a menace which is only too often executed, as we very nearly learned to our own cost. One of these maniacs stole into our cabin, determined that we should guess his dream and satisfy it. Now, we had declared at the outset, that we would not comply with these dreams; yet he persisted for a long time in shouting, storming, and raving—in our absence, however, for we retired to an outlying cabin to avoid the riot. One of our hosts, annoyed by these cries, came to him to learn what he wanted. The madman answered, " I kill a Frenchman; that is my dream, which must be fulfilled at any cost. " Our host [page 157] threw him a French coat, pretending that it had been stripped from a dead man; at the same time, working himself into a frenzy, he declared his determination to avenge the Frenchman's death, saying that his destruction should be followed by that of the whole Village, which he was going to reduce to ashes, beginning with his own cabin. [102] Thereupon, he drove out relatives and friends and servants, and all the crowd which had gathered to witness the outcome of this hubbub. Left alone, he shut the doors, and set the whole place on fire. At the moment when all were expecting to see the entire cabin burst into flames, Father Chaumonot, returning from an errand of charity, arrived on the scene. He saw a fearful smoke issuing from his bark house, and was told the reason. Breaking in a door, he rushed into the midst of the fire and smoke, removed the firebrands, extinguished the fire, and gently forced his host to withdraw,—to the surprise of the entire populace, who never thwart the fury of the Demon of dreams. The man's frenzy, however, did not abate; he ran through the streets and cabins, crying at the top of his voice that he would set everything on fire, in order to avenge the Frenchman's death. A dog was offered him, to become the victim of his wrath and of the Demon of his passion. " That is not enough, " he said, " to wipe out the shame and indignity done me in wishing to kill a Frenchman lodged in my house. " A second dog was offered him, and he became pacified [103] at once, returning to his cabin as calmly as if nothing had occurred.

Note if you please, by the way, that, just as he who has ca tured a prisoner in war, often takes only [page 159] his apparel, and not his life, so he who has dreamed that he is to kill some one, very often contents himself with his clothes, without assailing his person. For that reason, the dreamer was given a Frenchman's coat. Let us proceed.

Our host's brother, like all the rest, wished to play his part. Dressing himself somewhat like a Satyr, and decking his person from top to toe with the husks of Indian corn,—he had two women disguise themselves as veritable Megeras,—their hair flying, their faces coal-black, their persons clothed with a couple of Wolfskins, and each armed with a handspike or large stake. The Satyr, seeing them well fitted out, marched about our cabin, singing and howling at the top of his voice. Then, climbing to the roof, he went through a thousand antics, with an outcry as if [104] the day of destruction had come. After that, he came down, and proceeded solemnly through the entire Village, the two Megeras walking before him, and striking with their stakes whatever chanced to come under their hands. If it be true that every one has some grain of folly,—since Stultorum infinitus est numerus,—then these people must be acknowledged to possess more than half an ounce apiece. But this is not all.

Scarcely had our Satyr and Megeras passed out of our sight, when a woman, armed with an arquebus which she had obtained through her dream, rushed into our cabin. She was shouting, howling, and singing, saying that she was going to war against the Cat Nation, that she would fight them, and bring back some prisoners—with a thousand imprecations and curses on herself, if what she had dreamed should not take place. [page 161]

This Amazon was followed by a warrior, who came in carrying his bow and arrows and a bayonet. He danced and sang, shouted, and threatened; and then suddenly rushed at a woman who had entered to [105] view this comedy. He leveled the bayonet at her throat, then seized her by the hair, but was satisfied with cutting off a few locks; after this, he retired, to give place to a Diviner, who had dreamed that he could guess the location of any concealed article. He was ridiculously attired, and bore in his hand a sort of divining-rod, which he used for pointing out the place of concealment. Still, his companion, who carried a vase filled with some kind of liquor, was obliged to take a mouthful and blow it out upon the head, face, hands, and wand of the Diviner, before the latter could find the object in question. I leave the solution of the mystery to the reader.

A woman came in with a mat, which she spread out, and arranged as if she wished to catch some fish; she thus indicated that some must be given her, to satisfy her dream.

Another simply laid a mattock on the ground. It was guessed that she wanted a field or a piece of ground, which was exactly her desire. [106] She was content with five furrows for planting Indian corn.

After that, a little grotesque figure was put in front of us. We rejected it, and it was placed before other persons; after the mumbling of some words, it was carried off without further ceremony.

One of the Village chiefs appeared in wretched attire, and all covered with ashes. Because his dream, which called for two human hearts, was not [page 163] guessed, he caused the ceremony to be protracted one day, never ceasing his foolish actions during that time. Entering our cabin, in which there are several fireplaces, he went to the first, and tossed ashes and coals into the air; he repeated the performance at the second and third, but did nothing at ours, out of respect.

Some come entirely armed, and behave as if they were engaging the enemy. They assume the attitudes, shout the battle-cries, and join in the scramble of two armies in action.

Others march about in companies, and perform [107] dances with contortions of body that resemble those of men possessed. In short, one would never end if he tried to relate all that is done during the three days and three nights in which this nonsense lasts, such a din prevailing the while that scarcely a moment's quiet is to be had. Yet this did not prevent us from holding Prayers as usual in our Chapel, or hinder God from manifesting his Love toward these poor peoples in certain miraculous cures, granted by virtue of holy Baptism, Of them, however, we shall not speak here. Let us finish the account already begun of their obedience to their dreams.

It would be cruelty, nay, murder, not to give a man the subject of his dream; for such a refusal might cause his death, Hence, some see themselves stripped of their all, without any hope of retribution; for, whatever they thus give away will never be restored to them, unless they themselves dream, or pretend to dream, of the same thing. But they are, [108] in general, too scrupulous to employ simulation, which would, in their opinion, cause all sorts [page 165] of misfortunes. Yet there are some who overcome their scruples, and enrich themselves by a shrewd piece of deception.

The Satyr mentioned above found his cabin stripped of many articles, for which we were indirectly responsible; because great and small dreamed of the French, and as we would not listen to their demands, he, being fond of us, satisfied them. But, at length, wishing to reimburse himself, he assumed the garb already described, and impersonated not only a Satyr, but also the phantom which he feigned had appeared to him in the night with an order to collect forty Beaver-skins. This he accomplished in the following manner. He began to shout through the streets that he was no longer a man, but a brute beast; whereupon the Elders held a council for the restoration of one of their Chiefs to his original form. This was effected as soon as he had been given what he wished and pretended to have dreamed about.

[109] A poor woman was less fortunate in her dream running about day and night, and catching only an illness. They wished to cure her with the commonest remedies of the Country, which are emetics compounded of certain roots steeped in water; but they gave her such a quantity that she died immediately, her stomach bursting to let out two kettlefuls of water that she had been made to take.

A young man of our cabin came off with a good powdering. He dreamed that he was buried in ashes, and, on awaking, was bent on making the illusion a reality. He invited ten of his Friends to a feast for the purpose of fulfilling his dream, and [page 167] they acquitted themselves most excellently of the commission, covering him with ashes from head to foot, and rubbing them into his nose, ears, and all parts of his body. We were disgusted with such a ridiculous ceremony, which all the rest viewed with silent admiration, as some great mystery. Do not these poor people deserve pity ? I see clearly that [110] some of us will have to die for these dreams,—no, I am wrong, for Jesus Christ. Let us drop these buffoonery's, which would fill a large volume if one described them all.

On the twentieth of this month of January, the Elders, in full Council, presented the Father with a collar of two thousand beads, in return for one that we had given, requesting the deliverance of the young Frenchman in the hands of the Oiogoenhronnons. Their present indicated a serious intention to liberate him, and their hope that soon they would speak otherwise than through porcelain. [page 169]



OWARD the end of the month of January we witnessed the Ceremony performed every Winter in preparation for war, to which they incite [111] one another in two ways.

First, the war-kettle, as they call it, is hung over the fire in Autumn, that each of the Allies may put therein some choice bit to cook all Winter; that is, that they may participate in the intended enterprise. When the kettle had boiled until the month of February, many Hunters being present from Sonnontouan and Oiogoen, they held the war-feast, which lasted several nights. They sang, danced, and made countless grimaces, as a public announcement of their determination never to draw back in this fight, and to die in all sorts of torment rather than yield. With this declaration, they threw live coals and hot ashes at one another, exchanged heavy blows, and burned one another, to see if any were likely to fear the enemy's fires. One must bear it all, on this occasion, and submit to be roasted by his best friends, without showing a sign of [112] pain; otherwise, he would be disgraced and branded as a coward.

The Father was invited to put something into the kettle to make it better, and he told them that he intended to do so; then, adapting himself to their [page 171] ways, he said that the French would put some gunpowder under it, which pleased them greatly.

The other ceremony that they perform every Winter, to gain courage for fighting, regards the drugs used in dressing wounds. For this, all the Village Sorcerers or Jugglers, the Physicians of the Country, assemble, to give strength to their drugs, and, by the ceremony performed, to impart to them a virtue entirely distinct from that derived from the soil.

The chief Sorcerer takes his place in the middle of the group, surrounded by a great crowd. Then, raising his voice, he says that he is about to impart to the drugs or roots in his pouch the power of curing all kinds of wounds. Thereupon, [113] he begins to sing at the top of his voice, the other Sorcerers responding and repeating the same song, until the desired virtue has been infused into the roots. To prove this, he does two things. First, he bites his lips, drawing blood and letting it run down his chin; then, in plain sight of all, he applies his drug to his lips, adroitly sucking up the flowing blood; and the people, seeing the bleeding checked, applaud loudly, as if the drug had indeed quickly cured the wound.

And, to show that his remedies not only restore the sick to health, but also raise the dead to life, he causes to come out of his pouch a little dead Squirrel, which he holds by a cunning attachment to the end of the tail. He places it on his arm; all see that it is dead; then he applies his drugs, and, pulling the string as slyly as possible, he makes it return to his pouch, apparently revived before the spectators' eyes Producing it again, he makes it move, as the Jugglers of France move their puppets. [114] In [page 173] that large assembly, there is scarcely a person who does not show his admiration for the virtue of the herbs which work so mighty a miracle. After this great prodigy, the Master sorcerer parades through all the streets, followed by a great crowd, singing at the top of his voice, and showing off his simples. Now, all this is done to make the young g warriors fearless of wounds in battle, since they possess so sovereign a remedy. It is not in America alone that people seem to take pleasure in being deceived, but in Europe also.

If these juggleries do not produce an impression upon the mind, they at least caused an admirable display of courage last year, in the engagement which occurred with the Cat Nation. The reason for that new war follows. [page 175]



HE Cat Nation had sent thirty Ambassadors to Sonnontouan, to confirm the peace between them; but it happened, by some unexpected accident, that a Sonnontouahronnon was killed by a man of the Cat Nation. This murder so incensed the Sonnontouahronnons, that they put to death the Ambassadors in their hands, except five who escaped. Hence, war was kindled between these two Nations, and each strove to capture and burn more prisoners than its opponent. Two Onnontagehronnons, among others, were captured by the men of the Cat Nation; one of them escaped, and the other, a man of rank, was taken home by the enemy to be burnt. But he pleaded his cause so well, that he was given to the [116] sister of one of the thirty Ambassadors who had been put to death. She was absent from the Village at the time; but the prisoner was nevertheless clothed in fine garments, and feasting and good cheer prevailed, the man being all but assured that he would be sent back to his own Country. When she to whom he had been given returned, she was told that her dead brother was to be restored to life, that she must prepare to regale him well, and then to give him a gracious dismissal. She, however began to weep, and declared that she would never dry her tears until her brother's death was avenged. The Elders showed her the gravity of the [page 177] situation, which was likely to involve them in a new war; but she would not yield. Finally, they were compelled to give up the wretched man to her, to do with him as she pleased. All this occurred while he was still joyfully feasting. Without a word, he was taken from the feast and conducted to this cruel woman's cabin. Upon entering, he was surprised at being stripped of his clothes. Then he saw that his life was lost, and he cried out, before dying, that [117] an entire people would be burned in his person, and that his death would be cruelly avenged. His words proved true; for, no sooner had the news reached Onnontagué‚ than twelve hundred determined men started forth to exact satisfaction for this affront.

We have already observed that the Cat Nation is so called from the large number of Wildcats, of great size and beauty, in their Country. The Climate is temperate, neither ice nor snow being seen in the Winter; while in Summer it is said that grain and fruit are harvested in abundance, and are of unusual size and excellence.

Our Warriors entered that Country, remote though it was from Onnontagué‚, before they were perceived. Their arrival spread such a panic, that Villages and dwellings were abandoned to the mercy of the Conqueror,—who, after burning everything, started in pursuit of the fugitives. The latter numbered from two to three thousand combatants, besides women and children. Finding themselves [118] closely followed, they resolved, after five days' flight, to build a fort of wood and there await the enemy, who numbered only twelve hundred. Accordingly, they entrenched themselves as well as they could. The [page 179] enemy drew near, the two head Chiefs showing themselves in French costume, in order to frighten their opponents by the novelty of this attire. One of the two, who had been Baptized by Father le Moine and was very well instructed, gently urged the besieged to capitulate, telling them that they would be destroyed if they allowed an assault. " The Master of life fights for us, " said he; " you will be ruined if you resist him." " Who is this Master of our lives ? " was the haughty reply of the Besieged. " We acknowledge none but our arms and hatchets. " Thereupon, the assault was made and the palisade attacked on all sides; but the defense was as spirited as the attack, and the combat was a long one, great courage being displayed on both sides. The Besieging party made every effort to carry the place by storm, but in vain; they were killed as fast as they advanced. They hit on the plan of using their canoes [119] as shields; and, bearing these before them as protection, they reached the foot of the intrenchment. But it remained to scale the large stakes, or tree-trunks, of which it was built. Again they resorted to their canoes, using them as ladders for surmounting that stanch palisade. Their boldness so astonished the Besieged that, being already at the end of their munitions of war,—with which, especially with powder, they had been but poorly provided,—they resolved to flee. This was their ruin; for, after most of the first fugitives had been killed, the others were surrounded by the Onnontaguehronnons, who entered the fort and there wrought such carnage among the women and children, that blood was knee-deep in certain places. Those who had escaped, wishing to retrieve their honor, after [page 181] recovering their courage a little, returned, to the number of three hundred, to take the enemy by surprise while he was retiring and off his guard. The plan was good, but it was ill executed; for, frightened at the first cry [120] of the Onnontaguehronnons, they were entirely defeated. The 'Victors did not. escape heavy losses,—so great, indeed, that they were forced to remain two months in the enemy's country, burying their dead and caring for their wounded. [page 183]




N the fifth of February, there came to Onnontagué many Hunters from Sonnontouan and Oiogoen, whom the Father greeted with two presents of a thousand beads to each Nation; telling them that they entered not only the country of the Onnontaguehronnons, but also that of the French, since the two formed but one People. He added that the joy at their coming was general; [121] and he wished that Onnontio could have seen what fine children he had in that Country, for he would be especially pleased with them. He also, with the present offered in his name, wiped away the blood still remaining on their persons from their latest engagement with the Cat Nation. They responded with two similar presents, after which they prepared for their war-feast. We withdrew, to leave them at liberty to carry out fully the ceremony already mentioned.

On the seventh, the Village Elders made a present to these new guests, asking them to pay us respect, and not to take offense at our ways or find fault with our prayers, but to behave toward us as good children are obliged to behave toward their Fathers.

Among these Hunters were many Christian Hurons, [page 185] who greatly cheered the Father by showing him that disaster had not extinguished the Faith in their hearts, [122] and by giving him some account of the remains of that poor Huron Church. A good woman I named Gandigoura, when asked whether, during her six years' captivity among the persecutors of the Faith, she had kept her religion, answered that she was careful not to forget a thing which she held dearer than life. The consciousness that, since her Baptism, she had eight times enjoyed the privilege of receiving Communion, was sufficient to keep her from falling into her former sins, and to preserve her, to the last moment, in the remembrance of her Religion.

Another woman, named Gannendio, said that, after seeing her children slain, and herself receiving nine knife-wounds, by order of those to whom she had been given, she consoled herself with thoughts of Heaven, whither she expected to go with her little innocents; but that God had miraculously restored her to life.

René Tsondihouannen, she said, who was killed at the taking of Rigué, prayed to God morning and evening during his captivity, [123] and every Saturday reminded those whom he could of the approaching Sunday, in order that they might observe the day. He himself had Baptized his sister Aatio's twin children.

This same Aatio showed that the Faith was deeply graven on her heart, as she never wavered amid the severest trials that could assail her. On the contrary, although each day was for her a fatal day, she failed not to consecrate it to God by her prayers, in which she always persevered with a constancy worthy [page 187] of a Christian Maccabee. Her son, Tehannonrakouan, having been killed by the Andastogueronnons, there remained to her in her captivity only her twins, whom she carried on her back a long time, following the Victors and cheering herself with this precious burden, the sole relics left from the destruction of her large family. But, as this dear burden prevented her from making such rapid progress as her conductors desired, they murdered the two poor innocents before their mother's eyes. [124] She never lost patience, but prepared herself for further misfortune. And indeed, her knee becoming diseased, and so badly swollen that she could scarcely drag herself along, those cruel Barbarians, unwilling to grant her a speedy deliverance from the pains of this world by a hatchet-stroke, caused her to be burned to death.

On the eleventh of February, a Deputy from Onneiout came to treat of the general affairs of the country. He told the Father, among other things, that the peace between the French and the Anniehronnons was a permanent one, and so well compacted that there was nothing to fear on either side. But I would not place much confidence in it.

He caused a council to be held, and, when the Deputies of the other Nations had assembled, with the Elders of the Village, the Father was invited to attend, for the sake of learning this Deputy's errand. He went, and, addressing the representatives of Onneiout and Oiogoen, he told them that he was glad to see them, enjoined union upon them, and begged them not to give ear to the slanders [125] of the envious. His speech ended with a present of a thousand beads to each Nation. [page 189]

The Deputy from Onneiout rose, and brought forward a handsome collar of two thousand beads, which he presented to the Father, to wipe away the blood shed by the .Anniehronnons since the first negotiations for peace. He gave him another, a similar one, to thank him for adopting them as his children and compatriots, exhorting him to be a veritable Father, not only in word, but also in reality, as indeed he was expected to be. The third present was to encourage him in the enterprise, which he and Agochiendagues‚ had so happily begun and nearly completed. Then, to attest his joy at being adopted by Onnontio, he sang, and made his companions sing. That done, he spoke for a full half-hour, declaring his sentiments upon his adoption, and naming all the relatives he had at Kebec, at three Rivers, and at Montreal. Never Actor played his part better than this man did, especially when he [126] undertook to entertain the company for more than two hours with his Countrymen's deeds of prowess, portraying, by voice and gesture, battles, assaults, exploits, victories, defeats, the dead, the living,—and all with a grace and simplicity beyond conception.

Toward evening of the same day, three Soldiers of this Village arrived with three scalps, taken from some people of another language than that of these Regions, and of a country far distant from here. They also brought home two young men of the Cat Nation, well formed, well dressed, strong, and between twenty and thirty years of age. Whether because the Onnontaguehronnons had not taken them in regular warfare, or because they, in despair of escaping had given themselves up voluntarily, they [page 191] thought that they ought not to be treated as captives; and, indeed, upon their arrival, they were assigned to two of the most honorable families, to take the place of two deceased members. The younger and handsomer one, a Nephew of the other, was given to the greatest warrior of the Country, named [127] Aharihon, a Captain famous for his warlike exploits, but as arrogant and bloodthirsty as he is brave, as will presently appear.

One of his brothers having been recently killed by the Cat Nation, he was replaced by this newly-adopted man. The cruel Captain held his brother in such high esteem that he had already made him a sacrifice of forty men,—causing them to be burned, since he did not believe that there was any one worthy to occupy his place. When, accordingly, this young man was given him as a substitute for the deceased, he presented to him four dogs, upon which to hold his feast of adoption. In the middle of the feast, while he was rejoicing and singing to entertain the guests, Aharihon arose, and told the company that this man too must die in atonement for his brother's death. The poor lad was astounded at this, and turned toward the door to make his escape, but was stopped by two men who had orders to burn him. On the fourteenth of February, in the evening, they began with his feet, intending to roast him, [128] at a slow fire, as far up as the waist, during the greater part of the night. .After midnight, they were to let him rally his strength and sleep a little until daybreak, when they were to finish this fatal tragedy. In his torture, the poor man made the whole Village resound with his cries and groans. It was fearful to hear him shrieking in the dead of [page 193] night. He shed great tears, contrary to the usual custom, the victim commonly glorying to be burned limb by limb, and opening his lips only to sing; but, as this one had not expected death, he Wept and cried in a way that touched even these Barbarians. One of Aharihon's relatives was so moved with pity, that he advised ending the sufferer's torments by plunging a knife into his breast—which would have been a deed of mercy, had the stab been mortal. However, they were induced to continue the burning without interruption, so that before day he ended both his sufferings and his life.

On the seventeenth, three thousand porcelain beads having been lost, [129] the Soothsayer was consulted. Covering his face and blindfolding his eyes,—in order to see more clearly, as was said,—he ran about through the streets, the people following. After he had run for a considerable time, he went straight to the foot of a tree, where he found two thousand beads—the third thousand being retained by him to pay for his trouble. Thereupon followed great applause, and an emulous propounding of riddles while he was in heat.

On the twenty-fourth, while the Honnaouaroria—of which we spoke above, in connection with dreams—was being held, there arrived three Warriors, returning, after more than a year's absence, from the war against the Cat Nation. One of them announced, on his arrival, that he had a matter of very great importance to communicate to the Elders. These having assembled, he told them that, while seeking the enemy, he met a Tortoise of incredible size; and, some time after, he saw a Demon in the guise of a little Dwarf, who is said to have already appeared to [page 195] others. They call him Taronhiaouagui, which means " he who holds up the [130] Sky. This Dwarf or Demon spoke as follows: " I am he who holds up the Sky, and the guardian of the earth; I preserve men, and give victories to warriors. I have made you masters of the earth and victors over so many Nations; I made you conquer the Hurons, the Tobacco Nation, the Ahondihronnons, Atiraguenrek, Atiaonrek, Takoulguehronnons, and Gentaguetehronnons; in short, I have made you what you are; and, if you wish me to continue my protection over you, hear my words, and execute my orders.

"First, you will find three Frenchmen in your Village when you arrive there. Secondly, you will enter during the celebration of the Honnaouaroria. Thirdly, after your arrival, let there be sacrificed to me ten dogs, ten porcelain beads from each cabin, a collar ten rows wide, four measures of sunflower seed, and as many of beans. And, as for thee, let two married women be given thee, [131] to be at thy disposal for five days. IF that be not executed item by item I will make thy Nation a prey to all sorts of disasters; and, after it is all done, I will declare to thee my orders for the future. " So saying, the Dwarf vanished. This vision the man immediately related to his companions, who witnessed, as they affirmed, its verification that very day. Seeing by chance a Stag, he called it from a distance, and bade it come to him. The Stag obeyed, approaching and coming up to receive its deathstroke from our Visionary. Though the whole story was probably only a fiction of these three Warriors, who invented the dream to cover their shame at [page 197] returning empty-handed after so long an absence, still it is certain that the man was as wasted, pale, and depressed, as if he had spoken with the Devil. He spat blood, and was so disfigured that one scarcely dared to look him in the face. The Elders did not fail to offer the sacrifice as commanded, so [132] prompt are they to obey whatever resembles a dream. [page 199]



E were much perplexed how to inform those at Kebek of the state of affairs here, and of this people's passionate desire for our speedy settlement among them. They made their wishes known for the last time in a notable Council, held on the twenty-ninth of February,—when among other things, they told the Father that he must employ his last resources to this end. They said that they had been waiting the coming of the French for more than three years, but had always been put off from year to year, until at last they were tired of so many postponements; and, if the affair were not settled now, it was needless [133] to think any more about it, for they would break with us entirely, in view of the continued delay. They added further that they knew well that it was not trade which brought us to their country, but solely the Faith, which we wished to make known to them. " Why do you not come at once, " they asked, " since you see our whole Village embracing it ? All this Winter the Chapel has been crowded, for prayers and instruction; you have been very well received in all the Cabins when you visited them to teach the inmates; and you cannot doubt our wishes after receiving so solemn a present from us, with such public protestations that we are Believers. " Much else they added, [page 201] to declare their sentiments in the matter,—wherein, in truth, God's Providence appears most wonderful, in causing himself to be sought by People who were but recently the bitterest persecutors of his Church. Moreover,—a thing apparently inconceivable,—these good people, who [134] so strongly urge us to come, know not the reason of this, or whence arises, almost in spite of themselves, this strong desire of theirs. They urge on our settlement in their Country, and reproach one another for not making us come. The Elders say that they cannot resist the young men's desire for the French; the Young men say that the Elders are bent on ruining the whole country, this time, by calling us into it; and yet, neither the former nor the latter cease to press the matter vehemently, and to threaten us with their enmity unless we speedily become their Compatriots.

Therefore, fearing to lose so favorable an opportunity, we sought every possible way to send word to Kebek of their state of mind, and to hasten the coming of the French. But no one would undertake to conduct one of us to Kebec, fearing to let slip the season for securing Beavers and a whole year's supplies; for just then all the Young men [135] were departing for the chase. We despaired of being able to make the journey, although it was absolutely necessary for our settlement. For more than two months we had been using all sorts of expedients to gain our end, but in vain. At last, it occurred to us to make a novena to saint John the Baptist, Patron of this Mission; and we said nine Masses, to gain light upon a matter in which we were beset with utter darkness. And lo! contrary to our expectation and to all human probability, without knowing how [page 203] or by whom it was effected, immediately after the ninth Mass I left Onnontagué, accompanied by two of the Village's leading young men and by several others,—whom saint John undoubtedly prompted to undertake this journey. Moreover, the Leader of the escort was named Jean Baptiste, and was the first of the Iroquois Baptized in perfect health.

Toward nine o'clock on the second day of March, after celebrating holy Mass and bidding farewell to the Country [136] by attending to the Baptism of a child, upon whom I conferred this sacrament before departing, we started. On the first day we advanced five leagues, in spring rather than winter weather; but it soon changed, and we were forced by rain to spend a day and two nights in the woods, in a house without doors, without windows, and without walls.

On the fourth of March, after proceeding six short leagues, we camped on the shore of the lake which ends at Tirhiroguen. This was a hard day's journey, through almost uninterrupted snow or water up to our knees. Again a day and two nights were passed in this second halting-place, as the Lake, which we purposed to cross on the ice, was beginning to thaw; but the cold of the second night convinced us that the passage would be free and the bridge firm.

We did, indeed, accomplish a long league and a half on the ice, after which it was a pleasure to walk over the soft snow; we were, however, forced to wade in deep water to cross a small River that had withstood the heavy frost.

[137] On the seventh of March, after a light meal, we started in the morning and walked until evening [page 205] without eating. We were unable to reach Oeiatonnehengué until nearly noon on the following day. We hoped to be able to cross the great Lake in canoes; but, though it was not frozen, its entire shore was so encumbered with piles of snow and great blocks of ice, that it was nearly inaccessible. Accordingly, we made two short leagues along the smooth sand; and, after hunting an incredible number of Bustards, which make their winter retreat there in a little swamp, we made ours in the same place for that night.

The ninth was a hard day for us. We proceeded over a frozen Pond, but with our feet always in the water, as the rain that had fallen in the morning was not yet frozen. At length, we reached a fine sandy beach on the great Lake, but were stopped by a deep River, the ice on which was too weak to bear us. We sought all kinds [138] of expedients for crossing, but, as we found none, my people called a halt to deliberate on our future course. They spent more than three hours trembling with cold, rather than consulting; and you may believe that I had my share in this. The result was, that we retraced a part of our steps, seeking a suitable place for passing the night. So we crossed another Lake, under the same inconvenience as in the morning, but with the addition of a heavy rain, which finally compelled us to take refuge under a shelter of bark.

The next day, we ascended a league above the mouth of the River which had stopped us, and there found it frozen firmly enough for crossing. But oh, how hard it was to resume our course! We were forced to cross a vast prairie flooded with water, to make our way over soft and half-melted snow, [page 207] through woods and across ponds; and, after surmounting all these difficulties, we were thrice compelled to wade through water, to cross the [139] Rivers in our course. Finally, after walking all day, we found toward evening that we had advanced only three leagues on our route. In weariness God is strong, and in bitterness we find him indeed sweet.

On the eleventh, we walked nearly all day over the frozen surface of the great Lake, but with our feet constantly in the water, owing to the thaw which made our steps none too secure; for we occasionally heard the ice cracking under us, and some of the bolder ones had to go ahead and test its strength. Yet, we were not deterred from going out two and three leagues from land, to find a shorter route than that along the shore of the Lake. After making seven good leagues, we were stopped by rain, which did not cease during the night or on the next day; it so increased in violence during the second night, that, lying as we were on the ground, we soon found ourselves stretched in the water. Our little cabin had become, in a short time, a great pond. We rose, and tried [140] to find a dry place. Some took their station on little hills, but exposed themselves to the downpour of water from the Sky, while seeking to avoid that which was on the earth. Others went to look for higher ground, in order to make a fire and build a cabin; but darkness, snow, and rain prevented them. The more indolent remained till daylight as they were, fearing lest they should fare worse. Under such conditions, a night would seem long indeed, did not God illumine the [page 209] gloom. .At any rate, the most patient were the best bedded.

Day breaking, we found ourselves all soaked and in disorder, yet were forced still to have patience; for wind, snow, and rain seemed to conspire to detain us in our wretched position.

We left it after two days and three nights, and, advancing seven leagues over ice and snow, built our inn on a site that was slightly more tolerable. Our Savages, weary of bearing these hardships on a diet more meager than one [141] of bread and water only, we started out to hunt. They killed a Deer and some Wildcats, which restored our vigor.

We left on the sixteenth, with very fine weather; but the charms of the chase were too great for men who find all their happiness therein. .After making two leagues, some built themselves a cabin, while the rest hunted Deer. It was an easy day; for, besides the shortness of our march, we had to wade only once in water as high as our knees.

We passed all the seventeenth with feet in the water, weather rough, and road frightful. .At times, we had to climb with feet and hands over mountains of snow; again, to walk over great ice-blocks; and again, to pass over Marshes, plunge into thickets, fell trees for bridging Rivers, cross streams, and avoid precipices; while, at the day's end, we had made barely four short leagues. Finally, to [142] comfort us, we lodged at an inn where there was neither bread nor wine nor bed; but truly God was wholly there.

On the eighteenth, we proceeded six leagues. [page 211]

On the nineteenth, St. Joseph's day, as we were pursuing our course over the ice of the great Lake, it opened under one of my feet. I came off better than a poor Onnontaguehronnon Hunter, who, after a long struggle with the ice, which had given way under him, was swallowed up and lost in the water beyond the possibility of rescue. Having escaped these dangers, we entered a road of extreme difficulty, beset with rocks as high as towers, and so steep that one makes his way over them with hands as well as with feet. After this, we were again forced to run three leagues over the ice, never stopping, for fear of breaking through; and then, to pass the night on a rock opposite Otondiata, which is on the route commonly taken by Beaver-Hunters. We made a canoe for crossing the Lake; and, as we [143] were a company of twenty, a part went over first. On nearing the other shore, they struck their prow against an ice-floe; and there they were all in the water, some catching at the battered canoe, and others at the ice that had wrecked it. They all succeeded in saving themselves, and, after repairing this Boat of bark, sent it back to us, that we might follow them. We did so on the night of the twenty-first of March. We had eaten for dinner only a very few roots, boiled in clear water; yet we were forced to lie down supperless, on a bed of pebbles, at the sign of the Stars, and under shelter of an icy north wind. On the following night, we lay more softly, but not more comfortably, our bed being of snow; and, the day after, rain attended us on a frightful road, over rocks fearful to behold, both for their height and for their size, and as dangerous to descend as they are difficult to climb. In order to scale them, [page 213] we lent one another a hand. They border the [144] Lake; and, as it was not yet wholly free from ice, we were forced to undergo this labor.

On the morning of the twenty-fifth, a Deer delayed us until noon. We made three leagues, in pleasant weather, and over a tolerable road, finding very seasonably, at our halting-place, a canoe, or rather a whole tree-trunk hollowed out, which God seems to have put into our hands for completing the passage of the Lake without fear of the ice.

On the morrow, seven of us embarked in this dugout, and in the evening reached the mouth of the Lake, which ends in a waterfall and turbulent rapids. Here, God showed us still another special favor; for, on leaving our dugout, we found a fairly good bark canoe, with which we accomplished forty leagues in a day and a half, not having made more than that on foot during the three preceding weeks, owing both to the severe weather and to the bad roads.

Finally, on the thirtieth of March, we arrived at Montreal, having left Onnontagué‚ on the second. Our hearts found here the joy felt by Pilgrims on reaching their own country. God's [145] preservation of us in so signal a manner, on so dangerous a journey, shows us that he watches with unimaginable care over the salvation of the Iroquois—for which may he be forever blessed.

You will note, if you please, in passing, that letters have recently been received from Kebec, by the Latest vessel, saying that Father Claude d'Ablon, whose journal we have just seen, has returned to Onnontagué with Father François Le Mercier, Superior of that Mission, Fathers René Menard and Jacques Fremin, and Brothers Ambroise Broar [page 215] and Joseph Boursier. They are all going to join Father Joseph Chaumonot, who remained in the Iroquois Country. They are escorted by fifty valiant Frenchmen, who have already begun a good settlement in the very center of these Nations; and we shall, with God's help, see its success next year. The Fathers ask for Gospel Laborers, and the aid of ,prayers from all who desire the salvation of those Tribes. As the expense of maintaining such an enterprise is very great, if those who ,profess to contribute toward the Conversion [146] of the Savages would support this Mission, they would render a great service to God. Within a recent ,period, there have been Baptized, in different places, despite the disturbances and hindrances of war, more than four hundred and fifty Savages, children and adults. If the Preachers of the Gospel can be maintained in those Regions,—which I would willingly call the Land of Martyrs,—many more will be Baptized. Fiat, fiat. [page 217]



ON the sixth day of August, 1654, two young Frenchmen, full of courage, having received permission from Monsieur the Governor of the Country to embark with some of the Peoples who had come down to our French settlements, began a journey of more than five hundred leagues under the guidance of these Argonauts,—[147] conveyed, not in great Galleons or large oared Barges, but in little Gondolas of bark. The two Pilgrims fully expected to return in the Spring of 1655, but those Peoples did not conduct them home until toward the end of August of this year, 1656. Their arrival caused the Country universal joy, for they were accompanied by fifty canoes, laden with goods which the French come to this end of the world to procure. The fleet rode in state and in fine order along our mighty river, propelled by five hundred arms, and guided by as many eyes, most of which had never seen the great wooden canoes of the French,—that is to say, their Ships.

Having landed, amid the stunning noise of Cannon, and having quickly built their temporary dwellings, the Captains ascended to Fort saint Louys to salute Monsieur our Governor, bearing their speeches in their hands. These were two presents, which represent words among these Peoples. One [page 219] of the two gifts asked for 148] some Frenchmen, to go and pass the Winter in their Country; while the other made request for some Fathers of our Society, to teach all the Nations of those vast Regions the way to Heaven. They were answered, in their own way, by presents, and were very willingly granted all that they asked. But, while those assigned to this great undertaking are making their preparations, let us learn some news from the two French Pilgrims and from their hosts.

First, it is well to note that the Huron language extends fully five hundred leagues toward the South, and the Algonquin more than five hundred toward the North. I know well that there are some slight differences among these Nations; but they consist in certain dialects, which are soon learned, and which do not affect the fundamental principles of the two languages.

In the second place, there are in the Northern regions many Lakes which might well be called freshwater Seas, the great Lake of the Hurons, and another near it, being as large as the Caspian Sea.

[149] In the third place, we were told of many Nations surrounding the Nation of the Sea which some have called " the Stinkards, " because its people formerly lived on the shores of the Sea, which they call Ouinipeg, that is, " stinking water." The Liniouek, their neighbors, comprise about sixty Villages; the Nadouesiouek have fully forty; the Pouarak, at least thirty; and the Kiristinons surpass all the above in extent, reaching as far as the North Sea. The Country of the Hurons, which had only seventeen Villages, extending over about as many leagues, maintained fully thirty thousand people. [page 221]

A Frenchman once told me that he had seen, in the Country of the people of the Sea, three thousand men in an assembly held to form a treaty of peace. All those Tribes make war on other more distant Nations,—so true is it that men are Wolves toward men, and that the number of fools is infinite. These fools practice mutual slaughter, each wishing to prescribe the law to the other. Let us be patient with Barbarians, who know not [150] God; but those who profess to know him, and who are well aware that he is a God of peace, that his abode is one of peace, and that it is his will to govern mankind as a peace-loving Solomon,—those, I say, are much more guilty. The Christian Savages ask why the people beyond the Sea,—that is, in Europe,—who are Baptized, make war on one another, instead of coming to help them against those who hinder them from being taught and from believing in God unmolested, and who put the Believers to death.

Let us say, in the fourth place, that these two young men have not undergone hardships for naught in their long journey. Not only have they enriched some Frenchmen upon their return, but they also caused great joy in all Paradise, during their travels, by Baptizing and sending to Heaven about three hundred little children, who began to know, love, and possess God, as soon as they were washed in his blood through the waters of Baptism. They awakened in the minds of those Peoples the remembrance of the beauties of [151] our Faith, whereof they had acquired the first tincture in the Country of the Hurons, when they visited our Fathers living there, or when some of us approached the Regions bordering on their Country. [page 223]



HILE these People were doing their small trading, thirty young Frenchmen equipped themselves to bear them company to their Country, and to bring back furs. I gave them, as guides in the paths of their salvation, Fathers Leonard Gareau and Gabriel Dreuillettes, trained Gospel Laborers, and well versed in the Huron and Algonquin tongues. They were delighted at being the first ones chosen to carry Jesus Christ to a Country abounding equally in Crosses, in darkness, (152] and in death. A Brother of our Society, named Louys le Boësme, wished to be one of the party, as assistant to the Fathers, whom also three young Frenchmen joined, firmly resolved to live and to die with the Preachers of the Gospel.

On the day fixed for departure, this squad joined the main body, composed of Savages; the canoes were launched, and the men quickly embarked; paddles were set in motion, and the last Farewell resounded from the cannons' mouths. But alas for the mutability of all things human! Full of joy in the morning, a man dies of grief before night.

Scarcely had this Fleet of more than sixty Vessels accomplished one day's voyage on the great river, when it met two French Soldiers in a Canoe, who had been sent by the Governor of Three Rivers to [page 225] give warning that the Agneronon Iroquois, bitter enemies of the Algonquins and Hurons, were in the field, and would be sure to lay an ambuscade for them on their journey. As a matter of fact, they [153] had concealed themselves behind a point, in order to surprise our Savages as they passed; but this time they were outwitted. Our men, mustering their courage, plied their paddles with such strength and skill, that they passed swiftly in the darkness without being seen, and arrived safe and sound at the Village of Three Rivers.

Our thirty Frenchmen, who had equipped themselves at short notice for a journey of five hundred leagues, seeing, from the experience of twenty-eight leagues already accomplished, that their Canoes were poor,—several leaking already,—and that their provisions were scarcely sufficient for so long a journey,—knowing, besides, that they would be forced to resort to weapons if the Agneronons, with whom we had at least the appearance of peace, should attack their Fleet,—thought best to postpone their expedition until the Spring of the following year.

Our two Fathers, though clearly perceiving the dangers before them, were also well aware that the traffic in [154] Souls, in which they were about to engage, was nobler than that in skins, which our Company of Frenchmen was abandoning; and they were unwilling to turn back. They embarked with the Brother and the three Frenchmen who had joined them, holding their lives of no account as compared with the salvation of those Peoples to whom they had, for the love of Jesus Christ, given themselves.

Behold them, then, on their way, with two hundred [page 227] and fifty Savages, all Algonquins except a few Hurons escaped from the wreck of their former Country. They turn Barbarians with the Barbarians, so to speak, in order to make them all God's children.

The Agneronon Iroquois, who numbered only about six-score, seeing that the enemy had slipped by, followed them stealthily with all speed. They proceeded by night, in close order and without noise, hiding in the woods by day, and sending out Spies to reconnoiter the Algonquins. Soon they discovered them; for these unfortunate men, though cautioned to be on their guard, were constantly making a [155] great noise. Many of the young men, who had bought firearms of the French, having never handled them before, took a singular pleasure in the mimic thunder made by their arquebuses in the echoes of the forest. It was even said that a young Iroquois, a friend of peace, came and warned them to proceed quietly, saying that his companions were on the lookout to surprise them. But these young hot-heads, trusting in their courage and their numbers, had ears only for the noise made by themselves, halting very often to fire at game encountered on the way.

The Iroquois went ahead and seized a very advantageous position on the great River, in the path of the Algonquins. First, they entrenched themselves on a slight eminence covered with trees, which they soon felled. The Sentinels, posted very advantageously for commanding a long view of the great river, gave their Captain warning when the fleet appeared, and he placed a large number of brave Fusileers among the rushes and [156] tall shrubbery, on a point [page 229] by which our men would pass. Six Canoes of Hurons, and some Algonquins, preceding the main body by about fifty or sixty paces, heedlessly rushed into the snare, and received so prompt and fierce a shower of lead, that many were killed without knowing who dealt the blow. The Iroquois had no sooner fired their pieces than they burst from their ambush like Lions from their lair, rushing upon those who were still alive, and dragging them into their fort. Father Leonard Gareau, who was in this advance-guard, was wounded by a musket-shot which broke his spine.

Those who followed, upon seeing the state of affairs, seized their arms, leaped ashore, and pursued the enemy, but soon came to an entrenchment, or fort, which opened fire on all sides. They surrounded and attacked it, and many were killed or wounded on both sides; the Iroquois, however, maintained so strong a defense, that the Algonquins could neither take the fort by storm, nor [157] draw them out to open combat. They well knew their enemy's inferiority in number, and that, the Lion's skin failing him, he had very wisely assumed that of the Fox.

Our men, seeing this, took their hatchets, and soon constructed a fort at no great distance from that of the Iroquois, for shelter and recuperation. They waited for the latter to leave their Fort, that they might pursue them; but they held themselves under close cover. The Algonquins, as the season compelled them to hasten their return Homeward, parleyed with the Iroquois and made them a present, to induce them to decamp, themselves retiring first in order to leave the way clear. But the others refused to listen and rejected the present, being resolved to attack our [page 231] party once more. They were outwitted, however; for the Algonquins, feigning that they wished to strengthen their fortifications, for the purpose of awaiting the Iroquois' departure, made a noise like that of felling trees with heavy strokes of the hatchet. During this din, [158] and under cover of the night, the Captains had their men file softly to their Canoes; and thus they made their escape, leaving in their fort Father Gabriel Dreuillettes with his Companion, and the three Frenchmen who had joined them. The Father wished to accompany them, but no one would take him into his canoe. He who would be a stanch preacher of the Crucifix must expect only Crosses. [page 233]



N the devastation of the Country of the Hurons, those poor People were scattered in all directions,—some joining the neutral Nation, a large company taking refuge in the bosom of the French at Kebec, and others seeking a retreat in the Country of the Algonquins called Outaouak, of whom we have just been speaking. A part of these poor fugitives had [159] come down to Kebec with the Algonquins; and, as they had known Father Leonard Garreau in their own Country, and had already received some tincture of our Faith from him, it was very easy for them to obtain their former Pastor upon request. He was more eager to preach Jesus Christ to them than they were to receive him. Accordingly, he joined them, resolved to give his blood and his life for the Gospel, and seeing almost inevitable death in the dangers of an undertaking as holy as it was arduous. He expected either to be slain on the way,—as was the case,—or to perish with hunger in a Country five hundred leagues distant from the French, or to meet his death because of some Barbarian's dream. But none of these prospects frightened him.

On Wednesday, August thirtieth, of this year, 1656 the Iroquois, firing from their ambuscade upon six Canoes of Hurons, who were in the van, as we have described in the preceding Chapter, [160] [page 235] mortally wounded this good Father. He fell back into the Canoe that bore him, his spine broken by a bullet. Forthwith, the Iroquois dragged him like a dog into their fort, stripped him naked, taking away even his shirt, and leaving him only a small pair of drawers. They turned him over and over, to remove the ball from his body, and gave him a drink, by way of medicine, which he would not take. Three days he lay flat on the ground, bathed in his own blood, without food or drink, without Physician or Surgeon, and with no help but that of Heaven. Though wounded on Wednesday, he was not taken to Montreal until Saturday morning, when they offered two wretched little presents, according to their custom. One of them was to show their regret at the accident that had happened, and the other to dry our tears and assuage our grief. All the people of Montreal esteemed and honored this poor Father as an Apostle and Martyr, giving him their heartfelt compassion.

[161] Meeting there Father Claude Pijart, a Religious of our Society, his soul was filled with joy, and he opened his heart to this good Father, who has given us an account of his death. As soon as he was wounded, as we are told, he exclaimed, Domine, accipe spiritum meum,—" My God, receive my soul; " Domine, ignosce illis,—" Lord, forgive them. " He frankly told the Father that he had felt, neither in the attack, nor in his capture, nor during his ill treatment at his murderers' hands, any indignation or even coldness toward them; that, on the contrary, he had experienced a feeling of gentleness and compassion for those who were taking his life. He also said that, on seeing himself stripped naked, he felt a great joy [page 237] and contentment, conscious that he was dying in the nakedness of Jesus Christ, his Master. But this vivid satisfaction did not last long. God, wishing to consummate his work in him, and to purify him wholly, hid himself and left him bereft of all consolation. " It was," he said, [162] " the greatest affliction I experienced in all my destitution, to find myself forsaken by our Lord. It is true, he supported me in the distress of m y spirit, through my loving compliance with his holy will, and my thankfulness toward him for the favor and honor which he showed me in letting me die for him. "

On the Saturday when he was brought to us, he confessed three times very minutely and contritely; he also received the holy Viaticum and then Extreme Unction, piously responding to the words and prayers of the Church. " Alas, how unworthy I am of God's favors toward me! " he exclaimed. " I only regret that I suffer so little, and that I am too comfortable; and that I have not sought God's glory with sufficient singleness of purpose. " He often repeated the words: Ita, Pater, quoniam sic ,placitum fuit ante te, fiat voluntas tua! " Yea, my Father, since this death is pleasing in thy sight, thy will be done. " He spoke of his death as being enshrined in that of Jesus Christ. At length, toward eleven o'clock on the night of the [163] same Saturday, the second of September, he died in convulsions, leaving all our hearts full of joy and of a sweet hope that his blood would one day bear fruits worthy of God's glory. Nothing was omitted to honor his obsequies, and to show the affection in which he was held. His body was laid in the common Cemetery, in a spot set apart for Priests, where we intend some day to raise a [page 239] monument attesting the respect due to his memory.

"In the Country of the Hurons, " said the same Father, " I had known very intimately and admired the exalted virtue of that man of God. I remember that, when I was passing the winter with him, in 1644, at a place named Endarahy, we were crossing a frozen pond, on the fourth of December, saint Barbara's day, when the ice broke under my feet and I sank into the water. Without thought of danger, he ran to my rescue, when under him, too, the ice gave way, and we found ourselves both within two finger-lengths of death. But, making a [164] vow to the Saint whose memory we were honoring, we were delivered by her. This I ascribed to his virtues.

" In the following Summer, he accompanied me to the Country of the Nipisiriniens, where the fatigues which his zeal led him to undergo, brought on an illness, which we all thought fatal; but God preserved him for a nobler death.

" I particularly observed and honored in him a profound respect and scrupulous care in all matters of devotion; a humility that put me to shame, ever seeking as it did submission and contumely; and an ardent love and tireless zeal for the salvation of souls, which afterward increased in the various Missions that he filled. He loved the blessed Virgin with cordial affection, and she, as I believe, procured him so glorious a death. "

Another Father, to whom he wholly unbosomed himself, speaks of him as follows: " We learned this evening, September fourth, of the happy death of Father Leonard Garreau, a man truly [165] after God's heart, of a very rare humility, joined with very rare talents which he always concealed; of a [page 241] zeal and fervor so effective, that he penetrated the hearts of those with whom he conversed; of an obedience ready to do all things or to do nothing, being content with any lot; and entirely free from earthly ties, and inviolably attached to God, whom he loved in spirit and in truth. He was thoroughly imbued with the Faith, and ordinarily free from any sensible consolation; this did not prevent him from being very exact in all the duties of true devotion. About ten or eleven years ago, when he was mortally ill, according to our Physicians, who had abandoned hope, I had the consolation of penetrating his heart's most secret thoughts. I found only endless love and total self-abandonment to God's will, together with a fervor so ardent, a strength of mind so vigorous, and transports of a soul so filled with God, that only his own eloquence could express them—which, indeed, he did very forcibly, [166] but with an opinion of himself as humble and lowly as his distinguished virtues were exalted. And, during these ten years, he was ever increasing in this double spirit of humility and love."

Let us add, in conclusion, that love and a zeal for saving Souls composed his real character. This zeal made him leave the world to enter our Society; it made him forsake relatives, friends, and native land, to hasten to Canadas,—not to the society of Kings and Princes, or of highly civilized Peoples; but to that of Barbarians buried in forests, where we may almost say there is not food enough to sustain life, but merely sufficient to prevent death. In fine, during his sojourn in this new World, zeal has been his element, and the air that he last breathed in dying. Wounded by the Iroquois and dragged into [page 243] their Fort, forgetting his nakedness and making naught of the wounds from which he was dying, he dragged himself toward some Huron Captives whom he had caused to be born in Jesus Christ [167] by the waters of Baptism, and addressed them in a voice weak indeed, but full of fire, of love, and of spirit. He encouraged them to suffer with firmness, for God, the torments which he well knew were awaiting them, assuring them that they should soon see each other in Heaven, if they stood fast in the Faith which they had embraced. Finally, after hearing their confessions, he purified them in the Sacrament of Penance.

He perceived a young Frenchman, who, from a feeling of spite, mingled with anger and treachery, had gone over to the Iroquois. Calling him, he won his heart, and made him see the enormity of his crime. Wringing regrets and tears from this faithless man, he made him confess all his sins, and, absolving him, prepared him for death, which he did not think was so near. Betrayed by an Iroquois to the French at Montreal, he was seized and led to Kebec, where he was sentenced to capital punishment, which he bore with a resignation edifying to all beholders. He blessed God for his capture and condemnation, declaring that [ r 68] his Soul would have been lost if his body had not been sentenced to death. Saintly Souls scarcely ever go entirely alone to Paradise, as it is God's will that they should usually take others with them, to bear them company in glory.


[page 245]






Journal des PP. Jésuites, Octobre 25 à Decembre 27, 1656



Mort du Frere Liegeois. Anonymous; n.p., n.d.



Catalogve des Bienfaictevrs de N. Dame de Recouurance de Kebec. Various writers; 1632-57


Source: Docs. XCI. and XCII. we obtain from the original MSS. in the library of Laval University, Quebec. Doc. XCIII. we obtain from a copy of the original MS., also in the archives of Laval University.


[page 247]

Journal of the Jesuit Fathers, October 25

to December 27, 1656.

HE Reverend Father François Le Mercier, at that time superior of The entire mission, instead of Continuing The journal in this Book consecutively from the 5th Day of February, 1654, on The other page preceding this, wrote The continuation thereof in another document, In quarto, detached from this one, which is in folio—I know not how or why. He continues this journal on the 10th of February, 1654, Until The eleventh Day of may, Inclusive, of The year 1656. On that Day, He appointed the Reverend Father Hirosme Lallemant Vice-superior, who continued the journal in that same quarto document of the Reverend Father Mercier, beginning with the 12th Day of May, 1656, Until the 19th of June in the same year. The said Father Hirosme Lallemant gave me This folio Book, and the three other quarto books of Father François le Mercier, who was still superior, and begged me to Continue the journal. This I have done, beginning to write on the 12th of July, And continuing Until the 16th Day of October in the same year, 1656,—on which Day the three quarto volumes have come to an end, And Are filled. Accordingly, I have begun to write in This folio Book, [page 249] And to continue the Journal; As you will see on the following page.

1656, October 25.

OCTOBER, 1656.

  1. At 8 o'clock in the evening, A canoe, dispatched by Monsieur Boucher, arrives at Quebec from three Rivers; it brings us information that 40 Oneioutchronnons, in 7 canoes, arrived at three Rivers on The 20th of October with Collars, intending to take away with them the hurons of Quebec. These Oneiotchronons were Invited to do so by Annahotaha, as is said.

  1. Monsieur Bourdon returned from Tadousac in his boat, without any letter from father Albanel, whom he Left at Tadoussac to go and winter on the other shore with the savages.

  1. At six o'clock in the morning God called to himself Madame Charni, after an illness of 16 Days, and a life most pure and Innocent. She was buried on the 31st, in the new choir of the hospital Nuns.
  2. At 6 o'clock in the morning, the Father Superior blessed, with the customary Ceremonies of The church, the Cemetery of the hospital Mothers in the New Choir.

About 9 o'clock, the service for Madame Charni was held in the parish church; at its end, the body was borne to and buried in the new Cemetery of the hospital Mothers, which was not yet Enclosed. This favor was granted to Madame Charni, who had greatly desired and requested it. [page 251]

At 3 o'clock in the afternoon, sieur Lepinè arrived in his boat from Tadoussac, and brought us news of Father Albanel. He also told us that he,—sieur Lepinè,—had caught a thousand cod in one Day at mulbaye, 8 leagues below The isle aux Coudres; this had not yet been done in Canada.

At 9 o'clock in the evening, Our brother Pierre feautè arrived in a Shallop from three Rivers, without News.


  1. There arrived at Quebec from three Rivers, at 10 o'clock in the evening, Father Ragueneau with 4 Oneiotchronons and Monsieur Charni, who was only half-Way in his journey.
  2. In the evening, a council was held in the Cabin of Anotaha, a huron, by the 4 Oneiotchronons, who made 4 presents in order to give the Hurons notice that they were coming to seek them and take them away to the Iroquois country. This was in the presence of the French and Algonquins.

  1. gift. "I take thee by the arm to lead thee away. Thou knowest, thou huron, that formerly we comprised but one Cabin and one country. I know not by what accident we became separated. It is time to unite again. I have twice before come to seek thee,—Once at Montreal, speaking to the French In thy absence; the 2nd time, at Quebec. It is for the third time that I now come. " A Collar.
  2. "I put a mat in my Cabin for thee." [page 253]
  3. "I give thee some land for raising Indian corn. "
  4. "I lift thee from the ground. "

  1. Father le Moine Arrived at Quebec with St. Jaques, a soldier, from his journey to the Agniengeronons, bringing us News that the peace was continuing between them and the French; that they were making peace with the hurons; and that, if the Algonquins would send embassies to Them, they would make it also with them.

  1. Monsieur de Lepinè started For the second time for Tadoussac. item, Sister Marie Therëse de Jesus, hospital nun, made her profession. The Father Superior officiated; Father Vimon preached. Monsieur Bourdon was present, and was at the offering; and Madame Bourdon and her daughter d'Auteil entered the hospital nuns' house, with The permission of the father Superior.

  1. Kahikohan arrived from bicq in the evening, in a shallop.

  1. I received letters from three Rivers, by which I learned that Father Ragueneau had made the following gifts to the Oneiotchronons:

  1. To grease their Legs, and to welcome them on their arrival, 3 cloaks for their three families.
  2. To tell them that they will be always welcome here, provided they come in small number,—as there are too many difficulties, too many thefts, And too little room In our houses, for a great number. A Collar. [page 255]
  3. To tell Them that their weapons will be repaired, as they have requested,—2000 porcelain beads.
  4. To tell them that, concerning what they have asked,—that we should go to live with them at Oneiout,—That depended upon Achiendacé, who is at Onontae; And that they must address him. A Collar.
  5. To reprove them because they left Quebec in a false dread of the Algonquins, who, having only thoughts of peace, are not disposed to commit a hostile act, especially in the bosom of Onontio. A collar.
  6. To let them know that The Onnontaeronon, when he negotiated a peace with Us in the name of the four Upper Nations, included therein the Hurons And Algonquins; And that they should, therefore, fear nothing from That quarter.
  7. To place a mat in their country,—where they have already kindled a fire,—when the French, Hurons, or Algonquins shall choose to go and visit it. A Collar.
  8. Of 8 beavers, to exhort them to go to the chase without fear, wherever it be; and that, if they should meet the Algonquins, they shall prepare a kettle, and give one another meat.
  9. A moose-skin, to let them know that, the Algonquins having recently spoken to the Agnieronon, There is peace on all sides.

The Algonquins have Contributed the following presents. [page 257]

The 7th, the 8th, the 9th, And the 3rd, which make 4 presents.

All has been well received by The Oneiotchronon, who has promised An Inviolable faith.

  1. Kahikohan, who had come from bic on the evening of the 17th, returned to the same Place. He had brought letters from father Albanel.

Keenly cold weather begins


  1. I visited cote de Beauport, where I spent 3 days.

  1. I visited cote de Beauprè, where I remained Until the 18th, inclusive. The road And the weather were very bad.

  1. Father poncet said the midnight mass, with Deacon And subdeacon.
  2. Monsieur Vibnart served as deacon, And Monsieur le Bé as subdeacon. There were three Confessors: Fathers Vimon and Chastelain, and Monsieur St. Sauveur. I assisted at the Lectern. Father le Moine said the midnight mass at the hospital, and Monsieur St. Sauveur at the Ursulines'. item, the said father le Moine said high Mass at the same place, And I at the Ursulines'. This order was not well planned. The Chaplains must not again be henceforth withdrawn from their chapels in order to serve as deacon And subdeacon,—being thus deprived of saying The midnight mass in their monasteries. This is a cause of reasonable complaint. The [page 259] Night was very mild, on account of a thaw. The first bell for Matins was rung at 9 o'clock, the 2nd at 9½, and the 3rd a little before ten o'clock. We began Promptly at 10 o'clock. The mass for the Day at 7, high Mass at 9½. The sermon occurred after vespers; next, the benediction.

On the 24th, the first bell for supper was rung (Christmas eve being on a Sunday) at 5 o'clock, the 2nd at a quarter past 5, the litany at a quarter past 6, the examination at 6½. Next day, the rising bell at 5 o'clock; the 1st bell for supper at 5 o'clock in the evening, and the second at a quarter past 5. Litany at 7 o'clock.

  1. At 3 o'clock in the evening, The 3 huron Ambassadors who had been sent to Agniè Returned to Quebec. They are accompanied by 5 Agnieronons, 4 of whom have come to Quebec; the 5th remained at 3 Rivers. The result of their embassy was, that next spring the Agnieronons will come in force, to seek the hurons at Quebec.

High Mass is said, with deacon And subdeacon.

  1. High Mass is said without deacon and subdeacon. I Think Father Poncet's sickness was the reason. [page 261]

Death of Brother Liégeois.

HE Iroquois had already killed or burned fathers Daniel, de Brebeuf, Lallemant, and Buteux; They had murdered Father Jogues, with two donnés,—La Lande, and Robert, called " The good. " Until Then, they seemed to have spared our brother Coadjutors, although these accompanied our fathers wherever they went. But in The year 1655 they extended Their cruelty even to them; they killed One of them, near Quebec, and wounded The other with two balls, toward The platon sainte Croix. This latter was Brother Louis Le Böesme; And The other, Brother N. Liégeois,—both French by nation, And worthy of a sort of martyrdom.

The Iroquois, bent on The destruction of the Christian Algonquins and hurons, whose shattered remnant we preserved in The fort of Sillery, were incessantly prowling about this Village, in order to lay Ambushes for Them, and for those who furnished Them an asylum. On the 29th of May, A band of seven or eight agniez, having perceived our Brother Liégeois in The fields Near Sillery,—where he was usefully and courageously engaged in the service of the Missionaries And of Their Neophytes, in very dangerous times,—all at once surrounded Him, took Him without resistance, pierced His Heart with a gunshot, and stretched Him dead at Their feet. One of them Carried off His Scalp, and The other cut off His head, which he Left on The spot. [page 263]

On the Next day, The Algonquins found his body and brought It to Sillery, whence it was conveyed in a shallop to Québec. Our fathers and brethren went in a procession to receive It at the edge of The water,—The fathers robed, with birettas on Their heads, and tapers in Their hands. Our brethren, with some of the donnés, or household servants, brought The body into our Chapel, where We said Vespers for the dead, And afterward other prayers. At evening, our brethren made ready The Body of the deceased after The manner of The Society; And on The 31st of May he was buried, after The office and The mass. All our fathers and brethren, with many persons from without, were present at his obsequies. He was Buried in the lower part of The Chapel,—that is to say, on The side where today stands The altar of the congregation of messieurs.

Brother Liégeois spent many years in Canada, And rendered good service to The mission,—especially to the college of Québec, which had quite recently burned, And which was rebuilt in his time. We had nine kinds of workmen here, employed in The building of The house and of a new Chapel,—Whom he was charged to oversee. From Québec he went to three Rivers, where he built a Convenient house, with a chapel, for our missionaries and Their savages. Thence he came back to Québec, where he was occupied in completing The enterprises which he had formerly directed. Finally, During The height of the war with the Iroquois, He was sent to Sillery, to aid or direct The Savages in The Construction of a new fort which they were making in The Fields. It is there that he found The recompense of his labors,—I mean, a precious death,—while he was [page 265] laboring to protect our neophytes from the Outrages of The Iroquois.

It appears by our records that brother Liégeois was esteemed by the Governors of his time; and that our fathers had a special Confidence in Him, since for The service of The mission, And in connection with our various buildings, he repeatedly crossed The seas. . . . I do not find in The annals what his baptismal name was, or from what province he came. However this be, I doubt not that God has rewarded his Zeal, his courage, and his labors. [page 267]

List of the Benefactors of Nostre Dame de Recouvrance at Kebec, for whom prayers should be offered, and who should be commended to the prayers of the people.

N the year 1632, on the 5th of July, the French arrived at Kebec; and 8 days afterward they entered the fort, which the English had handed over to them. The fathers of the Society of Jesus who came with that fleet supplied with their own ornaments the altar that was erected in the fort every Sunday and festival for the celebration of holy mass, and for administering the sacraments to the French, until such time as the chapel was built.

In the year 1633, Monsieur de Champlain caused the chapel of Nostre Dame de Recouvrance to be built at the expense of the Gentlemen of the Company. The fathers of the Society of Jesus supplied it with ornaments and wax until the month of June in the year 1634.

Item, they gave the Image of Our Lady in relief which is above the altar. This Image is called Nostre Dame de Recouvrance [Our Lady of Recoverance], both because the chapel bears that name,—on account of Monsieur de Champlain having made a vow to [page 269] build it under that name if the country were recovered, which he did when that event took place,—and because this same Image was recovered from a shipwreck that befell a father of the Society of Jesus, while on his way to these countries.

In the year 1634, the Gentlemen of the Company sent Furniture and ornaments to the value of 100 écus,—among other things the Image of St. Joseph in relief that is above the altar.

Monsieur du Plessis Bochart, then General of the fleet, gave two brass pictures of medium size: one of the Nativity of Our Lord; the other representing Our Lady and St. Joseph with the Infant Jesus between them.

Item, Monsieur de Castillon gave two small pictures of Sts. Ignatius, Xavier, Louys de Gonzague, and Stanislas.

In the year 1635, Monsieur de Champlain, Governor of the country, left by his will to the Chapel some furniture, the sale of which realized the sum of about 900 livres.

Item, a large wooden chest;

Item, some napkins;

Item, about 2 dozen napkins,

Item, a small chest ornamented with pictures, which was sold for 16 livres.

Monsieur de Castillon gave the large picture of Our Lady without the frame.

In the year 1636, the Gentlemen of the Company sent an alb of common linen;

Item, an altar-cloth;

Item, two amices; [page 271]

Item , seven purificators;

Item, a surplice;

Item, a curtain of green watered camlet;

Item, a curtain of drugget with red flowers;

Item, three or 4 livres' weight of incense;

Item, ten livres of yellow wax in tapers;

Item, ten livres of white wax in tapers;

One of the fathers of the Society of Jesus gave, with the permission of his Superior, a girdle for the Lab, a box of small taffeta for wafers, and 1 pall [chalice-cover].

In the year 1640, the church of Kebec was burned and destroyed by fire, together with the house of the Jesuit fathers. We saved nearly all the Church ornaments.

In succeeding years, the Gentlemen of the Company ceased to make donations for Church ornaments, leaving the care of that matter to the charity of the habitants, and contenting themselves with paying the pension of 600 livres for two fathers at each Residence.

In the year 1642, Monsieur De l'Isle, lieutenant of Monsieur the Governor, gave a robe of beaver-skins, with which were purchased the two pieces of carpet that lie around the Altar.

Monsieur the Governor in the following years caused certain fines to be applied to the Church of Kebec; they were expended in purchasing ornaments.

In the years 1643 and 1644, a collection was taken up among the habitants for some ornaments and furniture for the Church. [page 273]

Monsieur de Montmagny, the Governor, gave 25 écus, which,—together with some other alms, from private individuals,—were expended on the gilded tabernacle which is now on the main altar, brought in 1644. With these sums have also been purchased two satin chasubles,—one red, the other green, and both flowered.

Item, a large cope of flowered white satin;

Item, 4 brass candlesticks, brought this present year, 1645.

Monsieur de Montmagny, the Governor, gave the chased brass vessel for the baptismal water.

In the year 1645, Monsieur de Montmagny, the Governor, and the habitants gave twelve hundred and fifty beaver-skins, brought by the soldiers who came from the Huron country, to have a Church built at Kebec in honor of Our Lady of Peace.

In the year 1646, Monsieur de Montmagny, the Governor of new France, gave to the church of Quebec a piece of new carpet sufficiently large to cover the Altar-steps on all the great feasts of the year.

Item, at the same time he declared that he gave to the church, on behalf of the Gentlemen of the Company of New France, the bell that was hung in the steeple last autumn, weighing about 100 livres; and that remained from the effects of the said Gentlemen of the Company.

On the 9th of April, 1646, Mademoiselle Tilli gave to the Chapel of Québec an [page 275]altar-cloth about 2 ells long, which has already been used and is not new.

In December, 1646, Madame Giffard gave 4 ells of black lace.

In January, 1647, Mademoiselle de Repentigny gave a corporal edged with lace;

Item, 3 corporals and 2 handkerchiefs;

Item, an upper altar-cloth of Holland linen;

And Mademoiselle Godefroy a corporal edged with lace.

Monsieur de la Tour gave 100 livres, which sum was employed in paying for the large ciborium brought this year, with the Cross and 4 silver candlesticks.

Monsieur de Repentigny gave 40 livres to commence the large tabernacle, for which the community gave 400 livres. It arrived here in 1649, in the month of august.

Robert Hache gave a bell weighing 1000 livres, which arrived in the year 1651.

Monsieur Ménoil gave a small cup, carved around the edge and chased, of silver gilded over;

Item, a low cup covered with crystal.

Monsieur Zacharie Cloustier gave an Ebony staff for the Beadle.

Monsieur Gloria gave the sum of 33 livres, 6 sous, 6 deniers.

Monsieur de St. Martin, Chanter, gave the sum of 60 livres to be expended in purchasing Church books for the choir.

Jean Joliet, a Wheelwright, left by will at his death the sum of 38 livres.

Barbe Hebou—formerly the wife of Jean [page 277] Milouer, called Du maisne—bequeathed by will the sum of 66 livres, 13 sous, 8 deniers.

Mademoiselle de Repentigny and Mademoiselle Godefroy, her daughter, lent to the Church on all the solemn feasts of the year from Christmas day, 1650, all their tapestry hangings, and other articles which were asked from them,—not without considerable trouble and inconvenience.

Item, Mademoiselle de Repentigny gave to her son Charles a very handsome surplice, trimmed with lace, which was used but once by him, and was burned in the fire that destroyed the house of the Ursuline Mothers.

Item, she gave the red soutane with the biretta used by her son Charles.

Madame Duquet gave 22 livres that were due her for linen articles which she had made for the Church.

The Reverend Father Superior gave, at the request of Father Jerosme Lalemant, a fine piece of drugget, about 8 ells long; it is a kind of linen, with red Bowers printed on it, With about 7 ells a canopy was made.

Item, a small basin of pewter for the wine-pitchers.

A large oval precious stone, pierced with silver, with a blue ribbon, for the key of the large tabernacle.

A beautiful Amber rosary for Our Lady of Recoverance, on the 14th of august, 1652.

Sent from France by Mademoiselle de Monceaux, a large rosary of carnelian for the same Image of Our Lady of Recoverance. [page 279]

Gave to the parish church a lace hanging of about 2 ells; 2 linen curtains with lace borders; and a table-cover about an ell and a half long, with 4 stripes.

Beautiful fine lace, 3 fingers wide, and 4 ells long, as a border for the altar-cloth.

A large picture of St. Joseph placed on the left side of the altar or altar-screen of the parish church.

A credence-cover, on the 1st of January, 1654

Madame de la Pelterie, ten écus toward completing the Cope, dalmatic, and tunic of the vestments for the dead.

She has given during six months up to this 15th of January, 1654, for the maintenance of the officers of the Church, more than 40 livres.

Item, the same, 21 livres, 10 sous toward the purchase of the tapestry of Madame de Monceaux.

Item, from the said date to the 3rd of may, on various occasions,—in cloth for dressing the children, and other articles, according to the memorandum,—over 100 livres.

Mademoiselle Manse sent in may, 1654, a fine piece of Chinese satin to make a scarf for the Blessed Sacrament.

Mademoiselle de Repentigny at the same time gave a fine picture of the rosary.

In the year 1654, mother Eugenie des Fontaines of the house of Ste. Marie in Paris, rue St. Antoine, sent a fine chasuble of flowered satin with an amice, burse, corporal, etc. [page 281]

At the same time, Reverend Father Charles Lalemant obtained an alms to pay Monsieur Quenet 142 livres that the parish church owed him, and 40 livres for tapers.

Monsieur Bourdon gave for the Chapel of St. Joseph where his pew is situated, the value of over 50 écus, either in money or in nails.

Monsieur Martin Grouvel, about as much, chiefly in timber, boards, and planks; besides oil to be burned before the Blessed Sacrament, and a small tapestry hanging to be placed around the pulpit.

In 1655 , Madame de Monceaux, an Altar-drapery of colored network.

Reverend Mother Eugenie des Fontaines, mentioned above, a handsome dalmatic.

The Reverend Mother Marguerite Doniat, of the Assumption in Paris, three fine surplices.

Monsieur de l'Espine, a robe of otter-skins; and, moreover, during the past two years he has enabled us to derive great profit from some nets that had been given him to take to Tadoussac.

Monsieur de Maure, several minots of wheat.

Madame de la Pelleterie, 100 livres,

Reverend Father Pierre le Clerc, of Paris, 100 livres

Father Roy, of Paris, 30 livres

Monsieur Bourdon, for the steeple, 20 livres.

Monsieur de Charny, 30 livres

Monsieur Godefroy, a gold écu. [page 283]

Monsieur Daudeville, 27 livres, 10 sous.

Madame Sevestre, 12 or 15 livres.

Monsieur de Lauson, the Governor, gave into our hands on various occasions, more than 300 livres.

It should be observed that, since 1651, the Superiors of the house of our Society have greatly assisted the parish church.

  1. They maintain a seminary for children, chiefly at their own expense.
  2. They provide one of our Brethren to take care of the sacristy of the parish church.
  3. They lent us Master Charles Boivin, carpenter, for three months to direct the work on our steeple.
  4. They lodge in that house St. Martin, the principal Chanter of the Church.
  5. They aid us in everything in many other ways and fashions.


Sieur Martin Grouvel and his wife donated their land situated at the place called La Grande Riviere above Cap de Tourmente, in the seigniory of Beaupré; but as the Seigniors did not wish to leave the property in mortmain they compelled the parish to dispose of it, and it was sold for seven hundred livres to Charles Cadieu, called Courville.

Sieur l'Espine and Sieur Bourdon, who are partners for the Tadoussac trade, a barrel of lamp oil.

Madame Buissot, a handsome scarf of red silk. [page 285]

Monsieur de Charny, a piece of black taffeta twenty ells long, worth 8 livres the ell.

We have received from Paris, by the ships that arrived in 1656, six beautiful vases of faience figured with bouquets from Mother Eugenie des Fontaines, of the Visitation at Paris.

Item, 6 others from Mother Marguerite Doniat, of the Assumption.

Item, a fine chasuble of black damask, nearly one-half the cost of which vas given out of charity through the efforts of Reverend Father Guillaume Thiersant.


Sieur Martin Grouvel gave an Antependium; two canopies of white drugget with red flowers; four chasubles,—two being white, one red, and one black; a red veil and a white veil. He has also given two burses, two Agnus Dei, a small picture, two censers, a brass incense-boat, three corporals, two lace veils, a small copper vessel for holy water, two breviaries, an altar-cloth, an alb, and an amice.

Madame Morin, a scarf of cotton checkered with yellow, for St. Anne's chapel.

Monsieur Vignal, an altar-cloth for St. Anne's chapel.

The Reverend Father Superior a missal-desk of black wood.


Monsieur Gloria gave a small gilt box to hold wafers. [page 287]

Pierre Paradis gave a large knife wherewith to cut the blessed bread.

Noël l'Anglois gave a napkin of yellow linen, about an ell in length, to be used when the blessed bread is cut.

Reverend Father Poncet sent from France two pretty scapulars, for the Virgin and Infant Jesus of the parish church, in the year one thousand six hundred and fifty-eight. Received on the seventh of august.



in 1660 . . . .

(Reliqua desiderantur.) [page 289]


In reprinting the Relation of 1655-56 (Paris, 1657), by Jean de Quen, we follow a copy of the original Cramoisy edition in the Lenox Library. The "Priuilege" was "Donné a Paris le 23. Decembre 1656," and the "Permifsion" was "Fait à Paris ce 28. Decmbre 1656." The prefatory letter of Jean de Quen is dated "A Kebec ce 7. Septembre 1656." This annual is no. 109 of Harrisse's Notes.

Collation: Four preliminary leaves, consisting of one blank leaf; title, with verse blank, 1 leaf; "Table des Chapitres," pp. (2); "Priuilege," with "Permifsion" on the verso, 1 leaf; prefatory letter from Jean de Quen to the French provincial, Louis Cellot, pp. 1-6; text (16 chaps.), pp. 7-168. Signatures: Four preliminary leaves without signature mark, A-L in eights. The last four leaves of sig. L are blank, one of which is usually pasted on the cover. There is no mispaging.

Copies have been sold or priced as follows: Leclerc (1878), no. 2601, priced at 200 francs; O'Callaghan (1882), no. 1237, sold to Library of Parliament of Canada for $21, and had cost him $32.50 in gold; Barlow (1890), no. 1305, sold for $9; and Lenox Duplicate Sale, sold by Bangs & Co., of New York, April 29, 1895, no. 176, to Charles D. Marshall, of Buffalo, for $27.50. Copies are preserved in the [page 291] following libraries: Lenox, Harvard, Brown (private), Marshall (private), Ayer (private), Library of Parliament (Ottawa), Laval University (Quebec), British Museum, and Bibliothèque Nationale (Paris).


For bibliographical particulars of the Journal des Jésuites, see Vol. XXVII.

An anonymous MS. sketch of the murder by the Iroquois (May 29, 1625) of the Jesuit brother, Jean Liegeois, lies within the old MS. volume of the journal. This we reproduce from the original.


The Catalogve des Bienfaictevrs de N. Dame de Recouurance de Kebec, was a contemporary list of those who, from time to time, between the years 1632 and 1657, made gifts to the chapel built by Champlain. The entries were in the handwriting of several of the Jesuit missionaries—among them, Jerome Lalemant, De Brebeuf, Ragueneau, and De Quen. The original MS. of this interesting document long rested in the archives of the Seminary of Quebec. In L'Abeille, a literary journal conducted by the teachers and students of the Petit Séminaire, the Catalogve was published for the first time, commencing in the number for April 14, 1859, and concluded in the issue for May 18 following. To this publication were appended numerous explanatory and biographical notes by the Abbés C. H. Laverdiére and H. R. Casgrain, editors of the Journal des Jésuites.

It is possible that the original MS. was used as printers' "copy," for it cannot now be found. In the library of Laval University is what Mgr. T. E. Hamel, [page 292] the librarian, considers a "very accurate" copy. We have corrected the L'Abeille version by the MS. transcript in Laval, and have reproduced such of the notes of Laverdiere and Casgrain as convey information not already given in our own notes in previous volumes of this series.

Note.—we take pleasure in introducing, with the present volume, the collection of Relations formed by the late Orsamus Holmes Marshall, and now owned by his son, Charles D. Marshall, of Buffalo, N. Y. The elder Marshall was one of the pioneer collectors of these volumes, and among the first to recognize their value as sources of history. The collection now comprises twenty-one annuals. Those represented, and previously published by us, are: 1635 (Harrisse, no. 63), 1636 (H. 65), 2nd issue of 1637 (H. 68), 2nd issue of 1638 (H. 70), 2nd issue of 1639 (H. 75), 1640(H. 76), 1640-41 (H 77), 1642 (H. 80), 1642-43 (H. 81), 1643-44 (H. 83), 1645-46 (H. 86) 1st Issue of 1648-49 (H. 90), 2nd issue of 1648-49 (H. 91), 1650-51 (H. 97), 1652-53 (H. 101), and 1653-54 (H. 103). Subsequent ones wilt be duly noted in order.


(Figures in parentheses, following number of note, refer to pages of English text.)