Astoria; Or, Anecdotes Of An Enterprise Beyond The Rocky Mountains By Washington Irving




































































































































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The pious missionaries employed by the Roman Catholic Church to
convert the Indians, did everything in their power to counteract - Page 9
Astoria; Or, Anecdotes Of An Enterprise Beyond The Rocky Mountains By Washington Irving - Page 9 of 615 - First - Home

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The Pious Missionaries Employed By The Roman Catholic Church To Convert The Indians, Did Everything In Their Power To Counteract The Profligacy Caused And Propagated By These Men In The Heart Of The Wilderness.

The Catholic chapel might often be seen planted beside the trading house, and its spire surmounted by a cross, towering from the midst of an Indian village, on the banks of a river or a lake.

The missions had often a beneficial effect on the simple sons of the forest, but had little power over the renegades from civilization.

At length it was found necessary to establish fortified posts at the confluence of the rivers and the lakes for the protection of the trade, and the restraint of these profligates of the wilderness. The most important of these was at Michilimackinac, situated at the strait of the same name, which connects Lakes Huron and Michigan. It became the great interior mart and place of deposit, and some of the regular merchants who prosecuted the trade in person, under their licenses, formed establishments here. This, too, was a rendezvous for the rangers of the woods, as well those who came up with goods from Montreal as those who returned with peltries from the interior. Here new expeditions were fitted out and took their departure for Lake Michigan and the Mississippi; Lake Superior and the Northwest; and here the peltries brought in return were embarked for Montreal.

The French merchant at his trading post, in these primitive days of Canada, was a kind of commercial patriarch.

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