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     Background midi music: "C'est L'Aviron" from THE GREAT CANADIAN TUNEBOOK, Sequenced by Barry Taylor, Victoria, BC, Canada

La Rochelle, France.  Situated on the western central coast of France, La Rochelle is the port from which Jehan and Perrine Terriot sailed in the 17th century. Eleanor of Aquitaine gave La Rochelle a charter in 1199 after which it rapidly became a port of major importance, trading in salt and wine, and skillfully exploiting the Anglo-French quarrels during the 13th and 14th centuries. La Rochelle became the principal port for trade with the French colonies in the Caribbean Antilles and Canada. Indeed, many of the settlers of Canada came from this part of France.
 
La Rochelle... Le Vieux Port.  The view of the harbor of La Rochelle as thirty-one year old Jehan (Jean, John) Terriot left in 16323. In the background standing like sentinels one either side of the harbor are the fortresslike 14th-century towers known as Tour St-Nicholas (on the right) and Tour de la Chaine (on the left).
La Rochelle... the Open Sea.  A view of the open sea as seen by Jehan and Perrine on their long two month journey to Acadia.  The stone walls on the right side of the photo is part of the dike that was constructed by Cardinal Richelieu to seal the harbor and starve the city into submission when La Rochelle turned Protestant in 1627. This was just five years before Jehan undertook his voyage. The Wars of Religion caused much turmoil and was no doubt one of the reasons that Jehan and Perrine left for the New World.
La Rochelle... the Walled Port.   On the left, Tour St-Nicholas, one of two massive towers that was used to protect the port from attack by the English in the 14th and 15th centuries.


 

La Rochelle... the Fortress City.  Another of the towers used for observation and protection.

La Rochelle... the Boat Launch.  Note the ancient housing in the background. Anybody recognize the lovely lady looking out over the harbor? If so, please let me know who she might be... once again, at .
 La Rochelle... the City with Canadian Granite Streets.  The streets and sidewalks of La Rochelle are paved with Canadian granite.  Most of the shipping to Acadia and other parts of Canada was to bring settlers and supplies.  There was not much to import into France from Canada except plenty of granite. So, the French shippers used the granite as ballast on their boats for their return trip to France. In La Rochelle, the granite was used to pave the streets.


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