The Suplicians

Although virtually ignored in Canadian history, the accomplishments of the Suplician missionaries of Montreal were no less important and informative than of the Récollets and Jesuits. They made only one major journey into Canada's interior, yet they made one very important discovery.

In 1669, Suplicians François Dollier de Casson and René de Bréhant de Galinée set out with the 'Mad Explorer' Cavelier de la Salle. At the western end of Lake Ontario, la Salle abandoned them and returned to Montreal. De Casson and de Galinée, however, continued westward, spending the winter on the shores of Lake Erie. In Spring of 1670, they followed the Saint Clair River to Lake Huron where they finally took refuge in the Jesuit mission at Sault Ste Marie. They then returned to Montreal via the Ottawa River.

Their one and only voyage may seem insignificant, but their detailed maps and accounts proved that the Great Lakes were linked to each other, and that they all drained into the St. Lawrence River and, eventually, into the Atlantic Ocean.

The Black Robes
The Jesuits
The Récollets
* The Suplicians *
The Jesuits - Bones of Contention