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In 1669, D'Iberville arrived at the mouth of the Mississippi, later known as New Orleans (Louisiana).
In 1731, Pierre Gauthier, Sieur de La Verendrye, was in the West. Despite the many fur traders already living in the area, sometimes like natives, it is only in 1701 that the earlier permanent forts were settled, like Detroit (Michigan) and Mobile (Alabama).
The history of the French colonists in Canada showed traits and presented characteristics rare in French annals; the ardor of the French nature and the suavity of French manners seemed to be combined with the stronger virtues of the people of the north; everywhere, amongst the bold pioneers of civilization in the new world, the French marched in the first rank without ever permitting themselves to be surpassed by the intrepidity or perseverance of the Anglo-Saxons, down to the day when, cooped up within the first confines of their conquests, fighting for life and liberty, the Canadians defended foot to foot the honor of their mother country, which had for a long while neglected them, and at last abandoned them, under the pressure of a disastrous war conducted by a government as incapable as it was corrupt... Lawrence was drawn by John-Denis, who came from Honfleur in Normandy.
Before long the fishers began to approach the coasts, attracted by the fur-trade; they entered into relations with the native tribes, buying, very often for a mere song, the produce of their hunting, and, introducing to them, together with the first fruits of civilization, its corruptions and its dangers.
In 1753, 1,500 French soldiers entered the disputed area and began work to build and improve several forts, including Fort Le Boeuf (1753), Fort de Chartres (1754) and Fort Machault (1756) – these three forts all were located on and protected the vital main transportation and communications corridor for France, between Canada (Quebec) and Louisiana.
Robert Dinwiddie, Virginia's lieutenant governor, upon hearing of France's actions, immediately sent George Washington and Christopher Gist to Fort Le Boeuf to persuade the French to leave.
They hoped to buy land west of the Appalachian Mountains from England and then sell it to settlers at a profit.
In 1673, Louis Jolliet and Father Jacques Marquette discovered the Mississippi River.They responded by constructing a string of forts in the contested area [now western Pennsylvania and Ohio] to assert sovreignty and to exclude Englishmen.The Ohio Country (sometimes called the Ohio Territory) was the name used in the 1700s for the regions of North America west of the Appalachian Mountains and in the region of the upper Ohio River south of Lake Erie – roughly corresponding to the present-day states of Ohio, eastern Indiana, western Pennsylvania, and northwestern West Virginia.The shareholders were mostly residents of the colony of Virginia [now the states of Virginia and West Virginia].They were interested in making money in land speculation and the fur trade.