1. 1534- Jacques Cartier made the first of three voyages to North America in search of gold on behalf of the king of France. He planted a cross in the Gaspé Peninsula and claimed the land in the name of King Francis I.
2. In 1599, a sixteen-person trading post was established in Tadoussac (in present-day Quebec), of which only five men survived the first winter.
French fishing fleets continued to sail to the Atlantic coast and into the St. Lawrence River, making alliances with First Nations that became important once France began to occupy the land. French merchants soon realized the St. Lawrence region was full of valuable fur-bearing animals, especially the beaver, which were becoming rare in Europe. Eventually, the French crown decided to colonize the territory to secure and expand its influence in America.
3. Early European colonists, who would later become known as Acadians, were French subjects primarily from the Pleumartin toPoitiers in the Vienne département of west-central France. The first French settlement was established by Pierre Dugua Des Monts, Governor of Acadia, under the authority of King Henry IV, on Saint Croix Island in 1604.
4. The first permanent European settlements in Canada were at Port Royal in 1605 as a fur trading post. In the spring of 1605, under Samuel de Champlain, the new St. Croix settlement was moved to Port Royal (today's Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia), then abandoned in 1607.
5. 1608- Samuel de Champlain sailed inland past Tadoussac to what is now Quebec City. Champlain founded a new settlement with 32 men in the St. Lawrence River Valley in an attempt to solidify France’s hold on the fur trade.
The territories of New France were Canada, Acadia (later renamed Nova Scotia), and Louisiana. The inhabitants of Canada (St. Lawrence River) called themselves the Canadiens, and came mostly from northwestern France. The early inhabitants of Acadia, or Acadiens, came mostly but not exclusively from the...