The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 49, July 1945 - April, 1946 Page: 473
THE SOUTHWESTERN HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
VOL. XLIX APRIL, 1946 No. 4
La Sal/e i rexas
E. W. COLE
ROBERT CAVELIER, SIEUR DE LA SALLE, the outstanding French
explorer of the seventeenth century, began his journeys
from his native Rouen in the summer of 1666, when he followed
his older brother to the colony of Canada. Three years later,
in July, 1669, La Salle, joining a Suplician exploratory and
missionary expedition, entered upon the career which earned
him an eternal niche in American annals. In 1673 he secured
the support of the Count de Frontenac, governor of Canada,
in his projects. Exploration and fur trade in the Illinois and
Great Lakes region were his chief interests until 1680, when
he began exploration of the Mississippi. Traveling downstream,
La Salle and his party of explorers reached the mouth of the
Mississippi on April 9, 1682, when he took possession of all the
river valley in the name of the king of France and called it in
his honor "Louisiana."
While La Salle was returning to Canada, news reached him
that Frontenac had been replaced as governor and that the
new governor, La Barre, had summoned him to Quebec to
answer for misdemeanors. La Salle went instead to France,
where he was at once the hero of the hour. He was restored by
the king to all his commands and honors in New France, and,
his request for royal support of an expedition to colonize the
mouth of the Mississippi was granted.
A fleet was accordingly prepared, and on July 24, 1684, with
four ships, more than two hundred colonists, and a wide variety
of supplies, La Salle set sail from Rochelle, France, on his last
voyage of discovery. Although La Salle was expecting to land
at the mouth of the. Mississippi (Atchafalaya) River, the ill-
fated voyage was destined to lead eventually to a landing on
the Texas coast and to a multitude of unhappy experiences in
the inland country. Late in September, 1684, one of his ships,
'Dictionary of American Biography (New York, 1933), XI, 10-12.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 49, July 1945 - April, 1946, periodical, 1946; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146056/m1/552/ocr/: accessed March 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.