Courtesy of the New York Public Library.

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Defeat of the Iroquois at Lake Champlain

On July 29, 1609, a battle took place that had a significant effect on relations between the French and the Iroquois. Samuel Champlain along with nine other French men and 60 Huron, Algonquin, and Montagnais warriors, defeated 200 Iroquois warriors. Champlain wrote about and depicted the battle in his 1613 publication The Voyages. His hope was to show his courage and good will to his Native allies to gain their trust and allegiance. He used firearms to impress his allies and to surprise his enemies. At the outset of the battle, the Iroquois were astonished to see an armored Frenchman and gazed motionless at Champlain. As they were preparing to fire a volley of arrows, Champlain fired his musket at three chiefs wearing wooden armor. Two fell dead and a third was mortally wounded. According to Champlain, this astounded and frightened the Iroquois, and they fled. The battle took place near the lake that would later bear Champlainís name.

Date: 1613 
Topic: Portraits 
Materials: paper, ink
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