The Biography of Explorer Jean Nicolet

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About this sample


Words: 719 |

Pages: 2|

4 min read

Published: Mar 1, 2019

Words: 719|Pages: 2|4 min read

Published: Mar 1, 2019

Jean Nicolet, born 1598 at Cherbourg, France. Died November 1, 1642. His place of death was at Sillery, Quebec City, Canada. His cause of death was drowning. JEan Nicolet, Sieur de Belleborne was a French coureur des bois noted for discovering and exploring Lake Michigan, Mackinac Island, Green Bay, and being the first European to set foot in what is now the U.S. State of Wisconsin. His parents are Thomas Nicolet and Marguerite de Lamer. He has had three wives, two daughters, one son, and four step daughters’. His three wives’ names are Anishabae kwen, Marguerite couillard, and Jeanne Gisin. His one son and two daughter’s names are Ignace Nicolet, Marguerite Nicolet, and Madeleine Nicolet.

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The step daughter’s names are Marie MA cart, Marie-Therese Machard, Anne Machard, and Catherine MA cart. Fun fact, the name Nicolet means ‘’people of victory ‘’ Origin of nicolet: French, diminutive of Nicole {Which is our 5th grade teacher’s first name}, feminine variation of Nicholas, Greek. His route was from Quebec, Canada and the St Lawrence river to the Ottawa river, by Lake Nipissing to Lake Huron, then to Lake Superior, next to Lake Michigan and then to Green Bay , and then to the Mississippi River . He was the son of a royal postal messenger. His colonial career seems to have begun in earnest in 1619/20, when he was sent to Canada by the Rouen and Saint-Malo Company, possibly after a brief initial visit in 1618. According to the Jesuits, with whom he had close ties—and who would eulogize him in glowing terms in their Relations—his good character and excellent memory impressed those with influence in the colony. Samuel de Champlain, the de facto governor, soon dispatched Nicolet to winter among the Kichesipirini Algonquins, who occupied Allumette Island (near Pembroke, Ontario) and levied tolls on the Ottawa River trade route. Here the future interpreter began to familiarize himself with the Algonquins. After a stay of two years, Nicolet moved closer to Lake Huron to live among the Nipissings, a neighbouring Algonquian people, engaging in trade and participating in Nipissing councils.

This last honor would have reflected his status as Champlain's representative as well as his own growing diplomatic experience. In 1634, Nicolet was sent on a combined peace mission and exploratory voyage to the upper Great Lakes. Like the rest of Nicolet's career, this expedition is poorly documented, and scholars disagree over his precise destination and the parties to the negotiations. Nicolet visited the Winnebagos, most likely in the Green Bay region of Wisconsin, and negotiated an end to hostilities between them and a neighboring Native American nation. While it lasted, the peace favored an expansion of the fur trade. Officials seem to have pinned high hopes on Nicolet the explorer, providing him with an embroidered Chinese robe to impress his hosts, who had been described to the French as "people of the sea" (the sea being, it was hoped, the Pacific). Nicolet stayed only briefly in the region, but he brought back information that, while scarcely clarifying official French geography of the Upper Lakes, confirmed that the Pacific and China lay farther west than some had thought. His visit must also have increased the Winnebagos' knowledge of the French, once they had gotten over their astonishment at their elaborately-dressed, pistol-packing visitor. After being recalled from his duties among the Nipissings —possibly because the Jesuits judged the presence of interpreters in the region disruptive of their Huron mission—Nicolet was named clerk and Algonquian interpreter for the Company of New France at Trois-Rivières. Apparently already the father of a Nipissing woman's child, in 1637, Nicolet married Marguerite Couillard, the daughter of a well-connected colonial family.

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In October 1642, the interpreter drowned in the St. Lawrence, just upstream from Quebec, when the boat taking him on a diplomatic errand to Trois-Rivières capsized. A skillful negotiator with Native people and with influential members of colonial society, Nicolet is representative of a handful of able intermediaries who helped shape Franco-Native relations in New France's early years. In the process, he explored both Native territory and Native culture. Jean Nicolet’s life was spent as a husband, father, diplomat, negotiator, interpreter, and a explorer. He helped create good relations between the country of France and many people in the world. He was the first european to discover lake Michigan and Wisconsin.

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The Biography of Explorer Jean Nicolet. (2019, February 27). GradesFixer. Retrieved May 18, 2024, from
“The Biography of Explorer Jean Nicolet.” GradesFixer, 27 Feb. 2019,
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