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Copies of this Relation have been sold or priced as follows: Harrassowitz (1882), no. 37, priced at 120 marks; O’Callaghan (1882), no. 1233, sold to Library of Parliament of Canada for $15, and had cost him a like amount; Barlow (1890), no. 1303, sold for $27.50; Dufossé, priced, at different times, between 1891 1893, at 200 and 265 francs. Copies are to be found in the following libraries: Lenox, Harvard, Brown (private), Marshall (private), Ayer (private), St. Mary's College (Montreal), Laval University (Quebec), Library of Parliament (Ottawa), British Museum, and Bibliothèque Nationale (Paris).
NOTES TO VOL. XL
(Figures in parentheses, following number of note, refer to pages
of English text.)
1 (p. 25).–Martin, who largely avails himself in the translation of these biographical sketches, of the MS. of 1652, says that this correspondent was Father Leonard Garreau. Bressani here draws freely from the Relation of 1650 (vol. xxxv.).
2 (p. 37). — “An autograph note of Father Paul Ragueneau, appended to the precious MS. of 1652, and affirmed under oath, leaves us no doubt upon this point. This missionary states that he obtained, from most trustworthy witnesses, the following details. The Huron apostate, named Louis Honareenhax, finally avowed that he had killed Father Noël, out of hatred to the faith; for, since he and his family had embraced the faith, all kinds of misfortunes had befallen them.” According to this note, the murderer and his entire family were objects of "the divine vengeance, of which the Iroquois were the instruments.”—Martin's Bressany, p. 276, note.
3 (p. 79). — The Father here mentioned was Joseph du Peron (vol. xxii., note 3); he sailed from Quebec Nov. 10, 1653.
4 (p. 109). — The commandant of Three Rivers at this time was Pierre Boucher (vol. xxviii., note 18). After the death of Duplessis, this post was commanded by Boucher and La Poterie, in irregular alternation, until September, 1667.
5 (p. 111). — Platon: a corrupt form of plateau (vol. xix., note 4).
6 (p. 131). — Carr describes the process by which the Indians made bread from corn (as also from beans, acorns, or other vegetable products); it was baked in hot ashes, or on broad stones placed over a fire. The ash-cake, johnny-cake, and pone, still used by whites, are survivals of the aboriginal cuisine. — “Food of American Indians," in Amer. Antiq. Soc. Proc., vol. x., part 1, pp. 181, 182.
7 (p. 143). — Pierre le Petit, a settler upon the Jesuit lands at Beauport, had a wife and two infant children. The boy, Joseph, born in July, 1647, was carried away by the Iroquois when barely three years old (vol. xxxv., p. 43). In the passage here cited, enter. rement is apparently a lapsus calami for enleuement, in the light of Poncet's mention of the child's death among the Iroquois.
8 (p. 191).— Interesting contemporary documents regarding Canadian affairs at this juncture are the letters of Marie de l'Incarnation. Writing from Quebec, Aug. 30, 1653, she mentions Poncet's capture, and the siege of Three Rivers by the Iroquois; and adds: “But the reverend Father Mercier, superior of missions, has so fortified this place that the French people here are safe.
Those wretches have so devastated these districts that we have sometimes believed that we would be obliged to return to France. . . Now the harvests, which are abundant, are being gathered. With that, too, aid is coming from France, which is a consolation to all the people; for it would have been deplorable if matters had come to the extremity of abandoning the country. More than 2,000 French settlers, who have made great outlays in order to establish themselves here, would be destitute, having no property elsewhere."
In another letter,— dated 1653 (month and day not given), and addressed to the Ursuline superior at Tours,— Mother Marie makes a statement of especial interest, in view of the credit given by most historians to Frontenac for planning the erection of the fort which bore his name: “At present, a peace is being negotiated; and there is talk of sending Gospel laborers to establish a great mission at Ontario, which is ten days' journey above Montreal. It is intended to take soldiers there also, and to build a fort, in order to make the place secure,- because, as that post will be in the midst of several important tribes, it will be a resort for those who shall go to announce the Gospel.” The name
Ontario" was not, as far as is known, applied at that early date to any fixed settlement, whether of French or Indians; but the lake - otherwise known as Lac des Iroquois, Lac St. Louis, and Lac Catarakoui - was already called Ontario (vol. xxi., p. 191 — its first mention by that name in the Relations), and would be first reached from Montreal at the place known as Catarakoui, where Fort Frontenac was erected (July, 1673), the site of the present city of Kingston. The name Ontario means, according to many writers, “beautiful lake." Upon this rendering, Hale remarks: “This, doubtless, is the meaning conveyed to an Iroquois of the present day, unless he belongs to the Tuscarora tribe. But there can be no doubt that the termination io (otherwise written iyo, iio, eeyo, etc.) had originally the sense, not of beautiful,' but of
great.' It is derived from the word wiyo, which signifies in the Seneca dialect 'good' but in the Tuscarora 'great.' . . Ontario is derived from the Huron yontare, or ontare, ‘lake' (Iroquois, oniatare), with this termination. It was not by any means the most beautiful of the lakes which they knew; but it was to both of them emphatically ‘the great lake.' Iroquois Book of Rites (Phila., 1883), p. 176.
Another letter from Mother Marie, dated Sept. 6, 1653, written to the Ursuline superior at Dijon, gives a graphic account of the events related in our text. After mentioning the rumors, current in the summer, of Iroquois attacks, and the belief of the French colonists that these were false reports, she adds: “But the reverend Father superior of the missions- -a man very zealous for the public welfare, who considers it necessary to remain continually upon his guard - labored energetically to secure the fortification of that settlement of Three Rivers. This was contrary to the opinion of the inhabitants of the place themselves, - who, devoted to their own personal affairs, had no inclination to quit these in order to labor on the fortress. Notwithstanding the hindrances encountered by the Father in his undertaking, the fortifications were completed, and all the inhabitants were protected from sudden attacks by the enemy. Hardly three weeks had passed, when 600 Iroquois (by whom we had been threatened) appeared, with the intention of putting all to fire and sword, without sparing age or sex, which they would certainly have accomplished, if the place had been in the condition in which they expected to find it. All those who lived in the Huron village, being informed of the enemy's approach, immediately took refuge within the fort, and consequently they, as well as the French, escaped slaughter. So true is it that the Iroquois intended to exterminate all and render themselves masters of the place, that they had brought their wives and children, and all their baggage, in order to establish themselves there."- See Richaudeau's edition of the Lettres, t. ii., pp. 11 - 25.
9 (p. 209). — Concerning the use of wampum, see vol. viii., note 70, and vol. xxvii., note 24; of tobacco on ceremonious occasions, vol. vi., note 25.
10 (p. 221).— This passage, and a similar statement by Marie de l'Incarnation (note 8, ante), would indicate that the Jesuits had anticipated by twenty years Frontenac's plan of building a fort for the control of Lake Ontario.
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