Brittany and French America: the two things I am passionate about. Born and raised in France, a proud “Brittany girl” and have lived in Quebec and North-East USA which used to be part of New France, I started to get very interested in the early colonial history of this region a few years ago. This blog reflects this passion for French America history (especially on the US side, as Quebec French heritage has been much written about, which makes new discoveries more difficult).
French America history is indeed little known and has been much forgotten. It is not surprising… history usually remembers the victories of his heroes and not the defeated nations. France was defeated by the British in 1763 in America as we all know, and little is remembered about the thousands of miles of territories it owned in what is now the USA, the more than 100 forts and cities it built and the people who settled there. So these fascinating stories are what I enjoy sharing: the Marquis de Lafayette and the American Revolution, the settlers in the Lake Champlain and NY region, New Orleans, Louisiana, the first explorers, Samuel de Champlain, the soldiers of the Carignan-Salières Regiment… And there is still so much more to share!
And then there is Brittany, with its rich traditions, history… and its inhabitants who cherish this windy and rough land, in the West of France, a land of fishermen, sailors, adventurers and explorers for generations… They were people of the sea, who sailed the Atlantic Ocean and fished Newfoundland waters before Jacques Cartier discovered Quebec, joined the Carignan-Salières Regiment in 1666, settled here and there throughout New France and Louisiana, and much more.
As I read about those men who came from where I come from and lived where I have lived… on the other side of the ocean, I can only be fascinated to discover so many connections between those two worlds. I could not ever imagined that so many had in a way followed the same path I have and just like Jean Raspail in 1949 in his book Canoeing the King’s Waterways (En Canot Sur les Chemins D’Eau Du Roi: Une Aventure En Amérique (Le Livre de Poche) (French Edition)), I feel I am retracing their presence and rediscovering the imprints they had on this US land which was French America.
What an amazing journey this is!