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Uploaded on Jul 14, 2009
Québec a Nation History (Part 7)
Great Peace of Montreal 1701
The Great Peace of Montreal was a peace treaty between New France and 39 First Nations of North America. It was signed on August 4, 1701, by Louis-Hector de Callière and 1200 representatives of 39 aboriginal nations of North America.
Commerce and exploratory expeditions quietly resumed in peace after the signing of the treaty. The French explorer Cadillac left Montreal to explore the Great Lakes region, eventually founding the city of Detroit, which had a promising future. Jesuit priests resumed their spiritual mission-based work in the north. The Great Peace of Montreal is a unique diplomatic event in the history of the Americas. Astonishingly, the treaty is still valid and recognized as such by the Native American tribes involved. Contrary to both the Spanish policy of enslaving and exploiting the natives or the English genocidal policies, the French chose to follow the path of reason in New France. While conflicts with the Native Americans were various and bloody and did not entirely cease after 1701, they never adopted the brutal tone of the English. On the contrary, Native American culture impressed many settlers, proved by the tradition of the coureurs des bois. Only the French, of all the colonizing forces in the Americas, did not try to exterminate the natives, enslave them or herd them into reservations camps.