Welcome to the Encyclopedia of French Cultural Heritage in North America! As you browse the site, you will learn about the heritage of French-speaking North America, as well as about its history and diversity. Get to know the people who preserve and cherish it, discover the places where it finds expression and become familiar with the trends that have shaped and influenced its evolution throughout history.
By Vaugeois, Denis
There are hundreds of books telling the story of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, tasked by President Thomas Jefferson with finding “direct & practicable water communication across this continent, for the purposes of commerce.” For Americans at that time, the area west of the Mississippi was terra incognita. French Canadians, on the other hand, had been traveling the region since the beginning of the 18th century. Indeed, the Jesuit Father Charlevoix had visited Kaskaskia, Cahokia and Natchez as early as 1721, and was of the firm opinion that the Missouri River led to the western oc...
The English version of the Encyclopedia of French Cultural Heritage in North America is online since December 15th, 2009. It features an ever growing number of articles, documents and resources on the heritage of French-speaking North America.