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Description:This original copper-plate engraved beautifully hand colored antique map of the St Lawrence River to Lake Ontario, Canada by Jacques Nicolas Bellin was engraved in 1757 - dated - and was published in the French edition of Antoine-François Prevosts 20 volume L Histoire Generale des Voyages published by Pierre de Hondt in the Hague between 1747 & 1785.
General Definitions:Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy and stablePaper color : - off whiteAge of map color: - OriginalColors used: - Yellow, green, blue, pinkGeneral color appearance: - AuthenticPaper size: - 15in x 10in (380mm x 255mm)Plate size: - 11in x 8 1/2in (280mm x 215mm)Margins: - Min 1in (25mm)
Imperfections:Margins: - NonePlate area: - Folds as issuedVerso: - None
Background:The Norse explored the Gulf of Saint Lawrence in the 11th century and were followed by fifteenth and early sixteenth century European mariners, such as John Cabot, and the brothers Gaspar and Miguel Corte-Real. The first European explorer known to have sailed up the Saint Lawrence River itself was Jacques Cartier. At that time, the land along the river was inhabited by the St. Lawrence Iroquoians; at the time of Cartiers second voyage in 1535. Because Cartier arrived in the estuary on Saint Lawrences feast day, he named it the Gulf of Saint Lawrence. The Saint Lawrence River is partly within the U.S. and as such is that countrys sixth oldest surviving European place-name.The earliest regular Europeans in the area were the Basques, who came to the St Lawrence Gulf and River in pursuit of whales from the early 16th century. The Basque whalers and fishermen traded with indigenous Americans and set up settlements, leaving vestiges all over the coast of eastern Canada and deep into the Saint Lawrence River. Basque commercial and fishing activity reached its peak before the Armada Invencibles disaster (1588), when the Spanish Basque whaling fleet was confiscated by King Philip II of Spain and largely destroyed. Initially, the whaling galleons from Labourd were not affected by the Spanish defeat.Until the early 17th century, the French used the name Rivière du Canada to designate the Saint Lawrence upstream to Montreal and the Ottawa River after Montreal. The Saint Lawrence River served as the main route for European exploration of the North American interior, first pioneered by French explorer Samuel de Champlain.Control of the river was crucial to British strategy to capture New France in the Seven Years War. Having captured Louisbourg in 1758, the British sailed up to Quebec the following year thanks to charts drawn up by James Cook. British troops were ferried via the Saint Lawrence to attack the city from the west, which they successfully did at the Battle of the Plains of Abraham. The river was used again by the British to defeat the French siege of Quebec under the Chevalier de Lévis in 1760.In 1809, the first steamboat to ply its trade on the St. Lawrence was built and operated by John Molson and associates, a scant two years after Fultons steam-powered navigation of the Hudson River. The Accommodation with ten passengers made her maiden voyage from Montreal to Quebec City in 66 hours, for 30 of which she was at anchor. She had a keel of 75 feet, and length overall of 85 feet. The cost of a ticket as eight dollars upstream, and nine dollars down. She had berths that year for twenty passengers.Within a decade, daily service was available in the hotly-contested Montreal-Quebec route.Because of the virtually impassable Lachine Rapids, the Saint Lawrence was once continuously navigable only as far as Montreal. Opened in 1825, the Lachine Canal was the first to allow ships to pass the rapids. An extensive system of canals and locks, known as the Saint Lawrence Seaway, was officially opened on 26 June 1959 by Elizabeth II (representing Canada) and President Dwight D. Eisenhower (representing the United States). The Seaway (including the Welland Canal) now permits ocean-going vessels to pass all the way to Lake Superior.