Portrait of de La Salle
Portrait of de La Salle
La Salle explored North America
La Salle explored North America
Discovered Louisana
Discovered Louisana
de La Salle's ship
de La Salle's ship
Claimed the land for France
Claimed the land for France
La Salle, Robert de
Topic(s):   Explorers
Quick Facts
Full name Rene Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle
Born November 22, 1643 (Rouen, France)
Died 1687 near the Brazos River in Texas)
Nationality French
Occupation(s) fur trader, explorer
Major Achievement(s) explored the Great Lakes region and the Mississippi River; claimed the entire Mississippi River basin for France

Robert de La Salle wanted to find a waterway across North America to reach China. He had land in Canada. Natives there told him about the Mississippi River. He thought that might be the way to get to China. He did some exploring, but no one is sure where he went at this time. People used to say he discovered the Ohio River. Now they think that is wrong.

La Salle built a fort on Lake Ontario in 1673. He started a fur trade that made him a lot of money. Then he built a ship. La Salle sailed across Lakes Erie, Huron and Michigan. In canoes, he and his men went up the Miami River (now the St. Joseph River) to the Kankakee River. Then he went on the Illinois River.

In 1682, La Salle and some natives sailed down the Mississippi in canoes. They got to the Gulf of Mexico. La Salle claimed the land for France. He named it Louisiana.

La Salle went back to France to get help from the king. La Salle wanted to set up a fort at the mouth of the Mississippi. He wanted to control the fur trade. He sailed from France in 1684. There was trouble during the whole trip. Then La Salle missed the mouth of the Mississippi River. He landed in Texas. He kept trying to find the Mississippi. He took men east on foot to find it. The crew finally got fed up and killed La Salle.

Resource information

Encyclopedia Britannica. (n.d.). Rene-Robert Cavelier, sieur de La Salle (French explorer). Retrieved June 17, 2013, from http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/326519/Rene- Robert-Cavelier-sieur-de-La-Salle

Kids Encyclopedia Britannica. (n.d.). Sieur de La Salle. (n.d.). In. Retrieved June 17, 2013, from http://kids.britannica.com/comptons/article-9275408/Sieur-de-La-Salle

La Salle, Sieur de. (n.d.). Retrieved June 17, 2013, from http://history.howstuffworks.com/north-american-history/sieur-de-la-salle.htm

Rene-Robert-Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle. Retrieved June 17, 2013, from http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/09009b.htm

Weddle, R. S. (n.d.). La Salle expedition. Retrieved June 17, 2013, from http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/upl01

Citation information

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