A Brief Sketch
by: Henry Higgins Hurlbut
Among the curiosities of -newly-discovered America was the Indian canoe. Its slender and elegant form, its rapid movement, its capacity to bear burdens and resist the rage of the billows and torrents, excited no small degree of admiration for the skill by which it was constructed.
|Painting showing the arrival of Samuel de Champlain on the future site of Quebec City, 1608|
but for the mistake of Champlain, and the unwise treatment of the Five Nations that followed, the government of the continent would have fallen to the French rather than to the English.
The whole confederacy, except a little more than half of the Oneidas, hung like the scythe of death upon the rear of our settlements, and their deeds are inscribed with the scalping-knife and the tomahawk in characters of blood on the fields of Wyoming and Cherry Valley, and on the banks of the Mohawk.
"but for a headwind when off Cape Cod, sailing southward in 1605, Champlain might have reached the Hudson, and instead of planting Port Royal in Nova Scotia, he might have established its foundations on Manhattan Island, and that this would have made the greatest city in America a French city."
"He was wise, modest, and judicious in council; prompt, vigorous, and practical in administration; simple and frugal in his mode of life; persistent and unyielding in the execution of his plans; brave and valient in danger; unselfish, honest, and conscientious in the discharge of duty."
|The Defeat of The Iroquois on Lake Champlain drawn by Champlain|