Skip to main content

Letter by Reverend Father Etienne de Carheil to Monsieur Louis Hector de Callieres, governor [on conditions in the Upper Lakes in 1702]

@ Wisconsin Historical Society


Father Carheil explains -- at times in graphic detail -- how lust and greed corrupted nearly everyone connected with the fur trade at the western posts. Fur trade voyageurs, hunters, explorers and merchants have been romanticized so often that we benefit from seeing its dark side through his eyes. Carheil reveals how French colonialism affected the everyday lives of young French clerks, teenage Indian girls, hardened soldiers, and tribal elders, and asks the government to end the excesses. We have digitized here only the English translation, on the odd-numbered pages, and omitted the facing French text.
We believe that online reproduction of this material is permitted because its copyright protection has lapsed or because sharing it here for non-profit educational purposes complies with the Fair Use provisions of the U.S. Copyright Law. Teachers and students are generally free to reproduce pages for nonprofit classroom use. For advice about other uses, or if you believe that you possess copyright to some of this material, please contact us at
View Original At:

Record Contributed By

Wisconsin Historical Society

Record Harvested From

Recollection Wisconsin