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Chapter 5 Section 2 Section Two - "Colonizing Louisiana" (pp. 200-204) Questions 1. Where was the first French fort established along the Gulf of Mexico? - Fort Maurapas near the present-day city of Biloxi (They needed to build a fort to keep possession of their new colony.) (They didn't build the first fort on the Mississippi River because the soil was too poor.) 2. Which countries tried to stop French efforts to colonize Louisiana? - England and Spain 3. How did Bienville keep the English away from the Mississippi River? - He bluffed his way out at a curve on the river now called English Turn.
Colonizing Louisiana • France colonizing and claiming the Mississippi made other countries nervous • Spain and Britain took this as a threat • Determined to protect its colonies, Spain built a fort on the Gulf of Mexico at Pensacola Bay • The British hoped for a fort at the mouth of the Mississippi
Keeping up with the Jones’ • Louis XIV heard the rumblings of other countries and knew France had to build a fort immediately • First he had to chose a good leader to take on the task • Pierre Le Moyne, Sieur d’Iberville, a Canadian commander was chosen to lead the effort to build a French fort • Iberville chose his war hardened 18 year old brother Jean Baptiste Le Moyne, Sieur de Bienville to accompany him.
A new fort for France • Iberville was charged with establishing a base from which to control the mouth of the Mississippi River • The site must be a good location for a colony • More importantly, the site must provide France with raw materials (Mercantilism) for manufacturers in France
Is it really the Mississippi • To make sure that this was the Mississippi, Iberville and Bienville questioned the local natives • Soon they found a chief who brought a letter from Henri de Tonti written in 1699 (13 years after La Salle’s death) • The letter was from Tonti to La Salle was an encouraging message of the colony • Iberville and Bienville found the Mississippi river and began building the fort • This was a very poor place for a fort so they moved east along the coast to present day Ocean Springs, MS (next to Biloxi) and built the first French fort, Fort Maurapas
Uneasy times at the French Settlement • When finished, Iberville returned to France for supplies, soldiers and settlers • While gone the fort suffered food shortage and lack of supplies • The men at the fort were also being attacked by the Chickasaw, friends of the British Rebuilt Ft. Maurapas Rebuilt Ft. Maurapas after Katrina
Turn for the better? • Bienville spent time exploring the river • On one exploration, Bienville, in a very small boat went down river and came across a 12 gun British ship • Pretending he had more ships, Bienville told the British that just up river were many French vessels and troops and that the river was controlled by the French • HE hinted of an attack if the British did not leave • Believing Bienville, the British turned around and sailed away • The place where this occurred is on maps today, it is called English Turn
Expanding-More Forts for France • After the English Turn incident, Iberville felt a fort at the mouth of the Mississippi was needed • Fort Maurapas needed to be moved, which was normal for first time forts • The first site flooded and the soil was too sandy to grow food • The new fort, Fort Louis, was located where it would keep the English out of Mobile Bay (Alabama)
Restless natives…or rude French • The local natives were very helpful in the beginnings of the colony • They shared food and supplies with the needy French settlers • The soldiers were even invited to live with the natives • To repay the great hospitality of the natives, the French settlers treated them as conquered people and took them as slaves and purposely stared conflicts with in tribes
Forget about the Forts • In Europe the War for Spanish Succession was happening • The war created unrest throughout Europe • French supply ships sailed to places considered more important to the war effort • Abandoned, the colony was left without proper defense or assistance at a time when it was still very shaky