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By Edward Pierce Hamilton

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Additional info for Adventure in the Wilderness: The American Journals of Louis Antoine De Bougainville, 1756-1760 (American Exploration and Travel Series)

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Beaussier left with two ships of seventy-four and seventy guns and two frigates of thirty and thirty-six guns to cruise in Louisbourg waters. The English have three armed craft on the lake [Ontario]. Three others, more powerful than these, are about to be launched. If nothing happens before then, they will have control of the lake. July 2: Received news of the taking of an English shallop, armed with nine swivels, on Lake Ontario. Our armed craft met those of the English on their first reconnaissance.

For all this distance the navigation is very difficult, but there is the most beautiful scenery in the world. The river is full of well wooded islands and its channel obstructed with rocks as well as restricted by these islands. There are waterfalls and almost continuous rapids for nearly forty leagues. At the Cascades the river divides into two branches, the northern one called "La Grande Rivière'" or "River of the Ottawas," and it is by following it that one goes to Michilimakinac; the other branch leads to Frontenac and to the Illinois country by way of the lakes.

Although he was unable to participate in the historic clash on the Plains of Abraham, he witnessed the fall of Quebec in 1759. The following winter he commanded at Ile aux Noix, on the Richelieu River, and in September 1760, at Montreal, he carried the French articles of capitulation to General Amherst. Taken prisoner along with the rest of the army, he was shipped back to France. He conveys the problems of supply in a country where war is dictated by the seasons, where French soldiers wait each year for the opening of the rivers, and where starving citizens in Quebec watch anxiously for the first ships from the home country.

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