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      The office of judge in Canada was no sinecure. The people were of a litigious disposition, partly from their Norman blood, partly perhaps from the idleness of the long and tedious winter, which gave full leisure for gossip and quarrel, and partly from the very imperfect manner in which titles had been drawn and the boundaries of grants marked out, whence ensued disputes without end between neighbor and neighbor. hospitalires) 800L. par an pour deux messes quil leur fait

      and fifty or two hundred more to supply the soldiers who had

      Phips imagined that the Canadians would offer little resistance to the Puritan invasion; for some of the Acadians had felt the influence of their New England neighbors, and shown an inclination to them. It was far otherwise in Canada, where the English heretics were regarded with abhorrence. Whenever the invaders tried to land at the settlements along the shore, they were met by a rebuff. At the river Ouelle, Francheville, the cur put on a cap and capote, took a musket, led his parishioners to the river, and hid with them in the bushes. As the English boats approached their ambuscade, they gave the foremost a volley, which killed nearly every man on board; upon which the rest sheared off. It was the same when 264 the fleet neared Quebec. Bands of militia, vigilant, agile, and well commanded, followed it along the shore, and repelled with showers of bullets every attempt of the enemy to touch Canadian soil.

      [6] Meneval, Mmoire, 1688; Denonville, Mmoire, 18 Oct., 1688; Procs-verbal du Pillage de Chedabucto; Relation de la Boullaye, 1688.

      It is impossible, as it would be needless, to follow the detail of their daily march.[326] It was such an one, [Pg 422] though with unwonted hardship, as is familiar to the memory of many a prairie traveller of our own time. They suffered greatly from the want of shoes, and found for a while no better substitute than a casing of raw buffalo-hide, which they were forced to keep always wet, as, when dry, it hardened about the foot like iron. At length they bought dressed deer-skin from the Indians, of which they made tolerable moccasins. The rivers, streams, and gullies filled with water were without number; and to cross them they made a boat of bull-hide, like the "bull boat" still used on the Upper Missouri. This did good service, as, with the help of their horses, they could carry it with them. Two or three men could cross in it at once, and the horses swam after them like dogs. Sometimes they traversed the sunny prairie; sometimes dived into the dark recesses of the forest, where the buffalo, descending daily from their pastures in long files to drink at the river, often made a broad and easy path for the travellers. When foul weather arrested them, they built huts of bark and long meadow-grass; and safely sheltered lounged away the day, while their horses, picketed near by, stood steaming in the rain. At night, they usually set a rude stockade about their camp; and here, by [Pg 423] the grassy border of a brook, or at the edge of a grove where a spring bubbled up through the sands, they lay asleep around the embers of their fire, while the man on guard listened to the deep breathing of the slumbering horses, and the howling of the wolves that saluted the rising moon as it flooded the waste of prairie with pale mystic radiance.

      But while infants were baptized and squaws converted, the crosses of the mission were many and great. The devil bestirred himself with more than his ordinary activity; for, as one of the fathers writes, when in sundry nations of the earth men are rising up in strife against us (the Jesuits), then how much more the demons, on whom we continually wage war! It was these infernal sprites, as the priests believed, who engendered suspicions and calumnies in the dark and superstitious minds of the Iroquois, and prompted them in dreams to destroy the apostles of the faith. Whether the foe was of earth or hell, the Jesuits were like those who tread the lava-crust that palpitates with the throes of the coming eruption, while the molten death beneath their feet glares white-hot through a thousand crevices. Yet, with a sublime enthusiasm and a glorious constancy, they toiled and they hoped, though the skies around were black with portent.

      Foremost among these was Joseph Cadet, son of a butcher at Quebec, who at thirteen went to sea as a pilot's boy, then kept the cows of an inhabitant of Charlebourg, and at last took up his father's trade and prospered in it. [548] In 1756 Bigot got him appointed commissary-general, and made a contract with him which flung wide open the doors of peculation. In the next two years Cadet and his associates, Pan, Maurin, Corpron, and 23


      V1 The success of Bradstreet silenced for a time the enemies of Shirley. His cares, however, redoubled. He was anxious for Oswego, as the two prisoners declared that the French meant to attack it, instead of waiting to be attacked from it. Nor was the news from that quarter reassuring. The engineer, Mackellar, wrote that the works were incapable of defence; and Colonel Mercer, the commandant, reported general discontent in the garrison. [409] Captain John Vicars, an invalid officer of Shirley's regiment, arrived at Albany with yet more deplorable accounts. He had passed the winter at Oswego, where he declared the dearth of food to have been such that several councils of war had been held on the question of abandoning the place from sheer starvation. More than half his regiment died of hunger or disease; and, in his own words, "had the poor fellows lived they must have eaten one another." Some of the men were lodged in barracks, though without beds, while many lay all winter in huts on the bare ground. Scurvy and dysentery made frightful havoc. "In January," says Vicars, "we were informed by the Indians that we were to be attacked. The garrison was then so weak that the strongest guard we proposed to mount was a subaltern and twenty men; but we were seldom able to mount more than sixteen or eighteen, and half of those were obliged to have sticks in their hands to support them. The men were so weak that the sentries often fell down on their posts, and lay there till 398The Council having come to a decision, Lawrence acquainted Monckton with the result, and ordered him to seize all the adult males in the neighborhood of Beausjour; and this, as we have seen, he promptly did. It remains to observe how the rest of the sentence was carried into effect.


      During the seventeenth century, and some time after its close, Canada swarmed with beggars, a singular feature in a new country where a good farm could be had for the asking. In countries intensely Roman Catholic begging is not regarded as an unmixed evil, being supposed to promote two cardinal virtues,charity in the giver and humility in the receiver. The Canadian officials nevertheless tried to restrain it. Vagabonds of both sexes were ordered to leave Quebec, and nobody was allowed to beg without a certificate of poverty from the cur or the local judge. ** These orders were notMeanwhile their captive general was not yet out of danger. The Mohawks were furious at their losses in the ambush of the morning, and above all at the death of Hendrick. Scarcely were Dieskau's wounds dressed, when several of them came into the tent. There was a long and angry dispute in their own language between them and Johnson, after which they went out very sullenly. Dieskau asked what they wanted. "What do they want?" returned Johnson. "To burn you, by God, eat you, and smoke you in their pipes, in revenge for three or four of their chiefs that were killed. But never fear; you shall be safe with me, or else they shall kill us both." [313] The Mohawks soon came back, and another talk ensued, excited at first, and then more calm; till at length 310


      church of Montreal, and an equal sum to the hospital.47