Book Review Of Pioneers Of Drance In The New World By Francis Parkman Jr.

1074 words - 5 pages

In his book, Pioneers of France in the New World, Francis Parkman Jr., mentions a historical account of early Spanish including accounts of French. In essence the book is broken up into two main parts the Spanish (chapter I-X) French (Chapters I – XVII). “The story of New France opens with a tragedy”[1 pp 3], blood and fury would soon break out over Europe, with political and religious enmities and would soon travel over the Atlantic and concentrate in the vast new lands of Florida. Contact between the Huguenots (members of the protestant reformed church of France) and Spanish was not a pretty one, with two religions and egocentrism being th main causes of the conflict. The beginning of the Pioneers of France in the New World first few chapter (Spanish section) state the typical cruelties between Spaniards and the Indians, as well as the fight of two countries and religions of France and Spain; the French may have treated the native better but by no means were saints. 1520’s Spain would be receiving reports of heroic tales of how Cortez conquered a civilazation, and stuck great riches, every Spaniard and their mother wanted to come over and stick it big in this immense, mysterious land.
The French section of Pioneers of France in the New World laps into and continues from the Spanish sections into their own chapters, telling immense tales and accurate accounts of the time. Informing the reader of the traditions of French, famous explorers like Champlain, discoveries of Indian towns, and lakes of vast size. The French were a culturally different group of individuals, one key note would be the better treatment of the natives compared to the Spanish, when Samuel de Champlain passed away in Quebec, Canada 1635 there were counts of Indians coming up and bearing gifts despite his cruelty. The main mission of the French was to “The missions were to win over the savage hordes at once to Heaven and to France” [1 pp461-62]; but the approach by the France was not by the sword, but more by the cross, not to crush and overwhelm but to civilize, convert, and embrace them for future generations.
Pioneers of France was written in 1865, during this time there was little to no history of the back woods on the French; during this, if one looked at a map from when Francis Parkman was born till his death, it was mainly Spanish dominated. Francis Parkman Jr. life heavily influence his decision on writing about back woods history; born on the 16th September, 1823 [2] he was sent to live with his paternal grandfather who owned a 3000-arce ranch. While there he would learn and live how to be a true pioneer, returning at the age of 16 he would attend Harvard. Although his family saw his line of work as ungentlemanly he still went about studying the French, Spanish, English, and Indians through back woods history.
Pioneers of France in the New World, was an extraordinary book of its time and is still seen today as a form of historical evidence; Francis Parkman Jr....

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