APT Gala Tribute Event
College of Fellows Lecture
Opening Session Brings New Perspective on North American History – Thru a French Lens
The opening keynote session by David Mendel, President of Mendel Tours of Quebec, provided a great overview to the history of Quebec and the city’s highs and lows through history. Its location where the St. Lawrence River narrows is the first nation’s meaning of the city’s name (where the river narrows). The city was founded in 1608 by Samuel de Champlain, and began as a small fur trading city. The bluffs/cliffs surrounding the city on three sides provided the city with a natural defense, and defensible stone walls were built on its west for further defense. In 1663, France, supported by Louis the 14th, transformed the empire of Canada and North American claiming the lands and waterways west of the English colonies set up along the eastern seaboard. This expansion of New France had great alliances with the tribes of the first nation’s as the number of settlers from France were less threatening and less in number than those from England. New France fell after the 1760s, as the English colonies were expanding, and because New France was not a supporter of the American Revolution. The speaker showed how many American cities were founded as French cities and forts (Detroit for example was a French port pronounced “De-twa”).