By 1642 the French had begun to halt these raids by building a chain of fortified settlements as far upriver as Montréal. The French tried to counter the Mohawk acquisition of muskets by giving muskets to their HURON and Algonquian allies, but the Jesuits persuaded officials to restrict their sale to reliable Christian converts. As a result, the Iroquois had a numerical and psychological advantage.
One of the profound effects of the Iroquois Wars was the dispersal of numerous native groups. The policy of the Seneca was to disperse the Huron, which left them free to raid the hunting peoples to the north. Their raids, beginning in 1642 with the more isolated Huron villages, culminated in 1649 with over 1000 Seneca and Mohawk attacking 2 main villages. Some Huron tried to hold out on a nearby island but were forced to disband; some fled to Québec and others joined the NEUTRAL. In the winter of 1649-50 the Iroquois attacked the Nipissing and the PETUN. The Neutral were decisively defeated in 1651.
With the Huron nation destroyed and the Neutral crushed, the Iroquois increased their raids on the Mohican, Sokoki and ABENAKI, while in Québec they raided as far east as Tadoussac and north beyond Lac Mistassini. Faced with stiff resistance from the Susquehannock and the Erie, the Iroquois Confederacy entered into peace with the French in 1653. After concentrated Iroquois attacks, the Erie were absorbed in 1657. Renewed hostilities in 1659-60 on a wide front greatly strained the confederacy, and the Iroquois again sought peace with the French. But a treaty embracing all groups was not arranged until 1667, after the CARIGNAN-SALIÈRES REGIMENT had burned Mohawk villages and food supplies. By 1675 the Susquehannock to the south had been absorbed and the Iroquois moved westward into the Ohio Valley, where they fought the Illinois and Miami nations.
The Iroquois succeeded in breaking every one of the groups that surrounded the confederacy. However, the victories did not bring them the prosperity they sought. The treaty of 1667 had allowed the French to extend their trade in the north and, with Louis JOLLIET, they advanced through the Great Lakes to the Mississippi River. In September 1680 a large Iroquois force attacked a small French party under Henri de TONTY which was trading in an Illinois village; the Iroquois were persuaded to desist on condition that the French leave the Illinois country. As part of a broader conflict between French and English, the Iroquois attacked Lachine in force in 1689 (see LACHINE RAID). However, with the aid of some 1500 TROUPES DE LA MARINE, the defenders eventually forced the hard-pressed Iroquois to make peace. In a treaty ratified July 1701 at Montréal, they agreed to remain neutral in wars between the English and French.
Links to Other Sites
Canadian Aboriginal Writing and Arts Challenge
The website for the Canadian Aboriginal Writing and Arts Challenge, which features Canada's largest essay writing competition for Aboriginal youth (ages 14-29) and a companion program for those who prefer to work through painting, drawing and photography. See their guidelines, teacher resources, profiles of winners, and more. From the Historica-Dominion Institute.
A Heritage Minute about the Iroquois legend of the great Peacemmaker, who created the confederacy known as the League of the Six Nations. From the Historica-Dominion Institute. See also related learning resources.
Canadian Military History Gateway
Search this website for authoritative information about Canadian military history. Provides links to websites for Canadian museums, libraries, archives, and other heritage organizations. Also features an online glossary of military terminology, educational resources and much more. From the Department of National Defence.
Four Directions Teachings
Elders and traditional teachers representing the Blackfoot, Cree, Ojibwe, Mohawk, and Mi’kmaq share teachings about their history and culture. Animated graphics visualize each of the oral teachings. This website also provides biographies of participants, transcripts, and an extensive array of learning resources for students and their teachers. In English with French subtitles.