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branches, rights, peculiar to each, but necessary to the preservation of all, has been found in the harmony and co-operation of all its powers, to give the best practical effect to its principles, and to lead directly to that system of efficient Government, best adapted to the spirit and happiness of a Free People.







From the discovery of the Colony, to the surrender of the
West India Company's Charter in 1674.

THE efforts of Europe, during the fifteenth century, 1492. to find a passage to the East, led to the discovery of America. Christopher Columbus, a native of Genoa, employed by Ferdinand and Isabella, King and Queen of Castile, discovered, in the month of October, in the year one thousand four hundred and ninety-two, one of the Bahama Islands, and afterwards the Continent. It was, however, reserved to Americus Vespucius, a more obscure navigator, in the service of Ferdinand of Arragon, to draw maps of the new discoveries, and to give them his own name. As the quantity of gold and silver, brought by Columbus into Spain, and the incidents of his voyage, had been greatly magnified, Henry the VIIIth of England, intent upon wealth, in the year, one thousand four hundred and ninety-six, commissioned



CHAP. two seamen, by the name of Cabot, to make similar researches. Sebastian Cabot, in the service of Henry the VIIIth, in sailing north-west-ward, in hopes of arriving at the East Indies, explored in the year, one thousand four hundred and ninety-eight, the greater part of the American coast. At length, when Francis I.* of France, perceived the glory and advantage which Spain and other nations derived from the discovery of America, every encouragement was held out to his subjects to induce them to engage in similar enterprises; fortunately for his views, there was then resident in France, a Flo1523. rentine, John Verrazani, an excellent seaman, of a bold and enterprising mind, and eager to undertake a voyage which he considered might be no less honorable than profitable to him. The King, on Verrazani's accepting 1524. the commission, ordered a vessel to be prepared for him, in which he immediately sailed; but, after a short time being at sea, from stress of weather, he returned to port. The next year he sailed, again, in another ship, called, the Dolphin, and proceeded to Madeira, where remaining until the month of January of that year, he left that Island, and after fifty days passage, arrived at Florida in America; he then ranged along the coast from the twenty-eighth to the fiftieth degree of north latitude, and took a nominal possession of the country which he called, "New France." The accounts he 1525. brought, by no means answered the expectations of the French King; Verrazani was therefore ordered to pursue the same route the next year. Unfortunately, however, for him, he had no sooner landed on the Continent

"What," said Francis I. of France, jocosely, “Shall the Kings of Spain and Portugal divide all America between them, without suffering me to take a share as their brother? I would fain see the article in Adam's Will that bequeaths that vast inheritance to them :-Encyclopedie, Vol. 4. p. 695.

than he was inhumanly murdered by the Savages. No further attempts were made until ten years afterwards, when Admiral Chabot represented to the King of France, the importance and advantages, that might arise from the establishment of a Colony in the new world, from which the Spaniards derived so much wealth. No person appeared more fit for such an undertaking, than Jacques Cartier, of Saint Maloe. The King therefore appointed him for this service, and two vessels of sixty tons each, and manned with one hundred and twenty-two seamen, were immediately provided, on board of which he sailed from St. Maloes, on the twentieth of April; and on the tenth of May, came in sight of Bonavista, in Newfoundland, and anchored in the harbour of Saint Catherine's. After passing a few days here, he ranged along the Labrador coast, crossed a Gulf, which he called, Saint Lawrence, and anchored in a Bay, which, from the excessive heat he experienced in the month of July, he named, the "Baye des Chaleurs." He then coasted towards Gaspé Bay, where he remained a few days, the better to acquire a knowledge of the natives, and to observe the face of the country.†

* CHAP. 1.

WHILE Cartier remained here, he erected on a height of land, a Cross, thirty feet high, on which

A 2

Charlevoix,---Vol. 1. p. 8.

+ On Cartier's arrival here, the Indians frequently pronounced these two words, Aca Nada, nothing here; from which it is supposed the name of the Country, Canada, has been derived. These words were first taught them, it is supposed, by the Spaniards, who had visited this Bay, and finding no mines, pronounced these words, which the Indians repeated to the new Adventurers. Others have derived it from the Indian word, Kanata, pronounced, Canada, which signifies a Collection of Huts. Lescarbot, however, states, that the Indians of Gaspé, called themselves, Canadians, which name is, also, confirmed by Champlain. Histoire général des Voyages, Vol. XIII. P. 23. Champlain, Part. II. P. 197.

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