Fran in France: Champlain the Spy | News | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Please support our work!

Donate  Advertise

Fran in France: Champlain the Spy 

Published May 26, 2009 at 11:50 a.m.

Journalist Fran Stoddard is in France this week with a group from Burlington City Arts, to celebrate the Lake Champlain Quadricentennial. She sent this report yesterday, from St. Malo, the "city of pirates." Click here for her earlier posts.

Sunday, May 23

I want to add a bit more about Champlain's life before he ventured to North America and set about a life’s passion to create settlement in New France.

Champlain sailed with his uncle on a ship from St. Malo that was escorting the Spanish fleet back to Spain. And there he got on a Spanish ship headed for the Caribbean, surreptitiously collecting information to report back to the king. He presumably did this bit of spying on Spanish procedures and port details quite well and gained the favor of the king.

Some have even speculated that since Champlain was able to gain the audience of the king so easily throughout Henri IV's reign, that Champlain may have been one of Henri's many alleged illegitimate children. Our trip historian, Andre Senecal, thinks that’s hogwash, but it does raise an eyebrow. Historians Senecal and David Hackett Fischer — author of the biography "Champlain's Dream," — also note that he expressed his disgust of the poor treatment of the native population by the Spanish, possibly formulating his quite different approach to natives in the St Lawrence Valley.

One or more images has been removed from this article. For further information, contact [email protected].
Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

Tags: ,

About The Author

Cathy Resmer

Cathy Resmer

Bio:
Deputy publisher Cathy Resmer is an organizer of the Vermont Tech Jam. She also oversees Seven Days' parenting publication, Kids VT, and created the Good Citizen Challenge, a youth civics initiative. Resmer began her career at Seven Days as a freelance writer in 2001. Hired as a staff writer in 2005, she became the publication's first online editor in 2007.

Comments


Comments are closed.

From 2014-2020, Seven Days allowed readers to comment on all stories posted on our website. While we've appreciated the suggestions and insights, right now Seven Days is prioritizing our core mission — producing high-quality, responsible local journalism — over moderating online debates between readers.

To criticize, correct or praise our reporting, please send us a letter to the editor or send us a tip. We’ll check it out and report the results.

Online comments may return when we have better tech tools for managing them. Thanks for reading.

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative
newsletters:

All content © 2024 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401

Advertising Policy  |  Privacy Policy  |  Contact Us  |  About Us  |  Help
Website powered by Foundation