Cartier's Explorations

Ten years later Francis I followed up the work of Verrazano by dispatching an expedition under Jacques Cartier. On his voyage of 1534 Cartier sailed a route that was for the most part already well known. This was an official exploring expedition, however, and its immediate result was a thorough report for the French king about the lands he had seen and the people he had met. He visited and named most of the important coasts on the Gulf of St. Lawrence and observed near Anticosti Island that he might be in the mouth of a great river.

The first known penetration of the interior through the St. Lawrence River gateway took place the following year, when Cartier returned as leader of a new expedition. Pressing upstream in three small vessels, he reached the Indian village of Stadacona, near the present site of the city of Quebec. A little more than 150 miles farther upstream he reached the end of navigation at a large island in the river. Here he found another Indian village, called Hochelaga, on the site of the present city of Montreal. From the height behind it, to which he gave the name Mont Real, he could see the foaming Lachine Rapids blocking the way to the upper waters of the St. Lawrence. At Stadacona, Cartier and his followers passed a bitter winter. Many of his party died from cold and scurvy before he could set sail for France the following spring.

Discovery of Canada

Rediscovery and Exploration

Cartier's Explorations

End of the First Colonizing Effort

The Founding of New France

The Father of New France

For the Glory of God

Seigneur and Habitant

Governor, Intendant, and Bishop

French and English Rivalry

The Final Struggle for the Continent

Early British Rule

The Quebec Act of 1774

The United Empire Loyalists

Upper and Lower Canada

Settlement and Exploration in the West

The Selkirk Settlement

The War of 1812

Struggle for Self-Government

Mackenzie and Papineau Rebel

The Durham Report

Canada West and Canada East

The Colonies Grow Up

Settlement on the Pacific Coast

The Confederation Idea

Dominion from Sea to Sea

New Dominion Is Launched

Macdonald's National Policy

The Age of Laurier

Canada and World War I

Canada Between the Wars

The British Commonwealth of Nations

Canada and World War II

Postwar Developments

Centennial of Canadian Confederation

Quebec Separatism

Modern Canadian Leadership

Native Peoples Issues