Pioneers of France in the New World

Read by LibriVox Volunteers

(4.6 stars; 14 reviews)

Parkman has been hailed as one of America's first great historians and as a master of narrative history. Numerous translations have spread the books around the world. The American writer and literary critic Edmund Wilson (1895-1972) in his book O Canada (1965), described Parkman’s France and England in North America in these terms: The clarity, the momentum and the color of the first volumes of Parkman’s narrative are among the most brilliant achievements of the writing of history as an art.

Parkman's biases, particularly his attitudes about nationality, race, and especially Native Americans, has generated criticism. The Canadian historian W. J. Eccles harshly criticized what he perceived as Parkman's bias against France and Roman Catholic policies, as well as what he considered Parkman's misuse of French language sources. However, Parkman's most severe detractor was the American historian Francis Jennings, an outspoken and controversial critic of the European colonization of North America, who went so far as to characterize Parkman's work as "fiction" and Parkman himself as a "liar".

Unlike Jennings and Eccles, many modern historians have found much to praise in Parkman's work even while recognizing his limitations. Calling Jennings' critique "vitriolic and unfair," the historian Robert S. Allen has said that Parkman's history of France and England in North America "remains a rich mixture of history and literature which few contemporary scholars can hope to emulate". The historian Michael N. McConnell, while acknowledging the historical errors and racial prejudice in Parkman's book The Conspiracy of Pontiac, has said: " would be easy to dismiss Pontiac as a curious perhaps embarrassing artifact of another time and place. Yet Parkman's work represents a pioneering effort; in several ways he anticipated the kind of frontier history now taken for granted...." Parkman's masterful and evocative use of language remains his most enduring and instructive legacy.

This is Vol 1 of Parkman's series "France and England in North America." The LibriVox recording does not include footnotes, many of which are extended quotations from original French sources: See project Gutenberg for footnotes. (Summary adapted from Wikipedia by Karen Merline)

Part 1: Pioneers of France in the New World
Part 2: The Jesuits in North America in the 17th Century
Part 4: The Old Régime in Canada
Part 5: Count Frontenac and New France under Louis XIV
Part 6: Montcalm and Wolfe
Part 7: A Half Century of Conflict (10 hr 22 min)


Introduction 11:04 Read by Sibella Denton
PT 1 HUGENOTS IN FLORIDA: Ch 01 (1512-1561) Early Spanish Adventure 12:35 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 02 (1550-1558) Villegagnon 17:54 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 03 (1562, 1563) Jean Ribaut 22:42 Read by Keith Henige
Ch 04 (1564) Laudonniere 32:50 Read by JimOCR
Ch 05 (1564, 1565) Conspiracy 14:34 Read by Katie Riley
Ch 06 (1564, 1565) Famine - War - Succor 29:13 Read by Keneva
Ch 07 pt 1 (1565) Menendez 23:43 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 07 pt 2 (1565) Menendez 23:09 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 08 (1565) Massacre of the Heretics 24:40 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 09 (1565-1567) Charles IX - Phillip II 8:00 Read by Mark Penfold
Ch 10 (1567-1583) Dominique de Gourgues 28:45 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 01 pt 2 (1488-1543) Champlain: Early French Adventure in North America 32:34 Read by Jacquerie
Ch 02 (1542-1604) LaRoche - Champlain - de Monts 24:52 Read by Jacquerie
Ch 03 (1604, 1605) Acadia Occupied 22:20 Read by Jacquerie
Ch 04 (1605-1607) Lescarbot and Champlain 30:34 Read by Jacquerie
Ch 05 (1610, 1611) The Jesuits and Their Patroness 17:04 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 06 (1611, 1612) Jesuits in Arcadia 18:16 Read by Katie Riley
Ch 07 (1613) la Saussaye - Argall 15:04 Read by Mark Penfold
Ch 08 (1613-1615) Ruin of French Acadia 14:53 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 09 (1608, 1609) Champlain at Quebec 19:53 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 10 (1609) Lake Champlain 18:35 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 11 (1610-1612) War - Trade - Discovery 20:10 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 12 (1612, 1613) The Impostor Vignau 21:37 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 13 (1615) Discovery of Lake Huron 19:49 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 14 (1615, 1616) The Great War Party 23:56 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 15 (1616-1627) Hostile Sects - Rival Interests) 20:18 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 16 (1628, 1629) The English at Quebec 16:24 Read by Sibella Denton
Ch 17 (1632-1635) Death of Champlain 12:37 Read by Sibella Denton


(5 stars)

This work furnished much_needed information on a neglected hero of early exploration. Champlain's selfless dedication laid the foundation for the French governance in Canada.