Second Voyage to Canada: Conclusion

As it was already mentioned, Cartier set sail for a second voyage to Canada on May 19, 1535, with three ships and 110 men.

This time, he sailed up-river for the first time and reached the Iroquoian village of Stadacona, where he decided to leave two ships in a harbour. Jacques Cartier used his smallest ship to continue up-river to Hochelaga where he arrived on October 2, 1535.

About 1,000 Iroquoians came to the river edge to greet the sailors. Cartier could proceed no further, as the river was blocked by rapids. After spending two days in Hochelaga, Cartier left the village on October 4, 1535, and returned to Stadacona on October 11, where his men had built a fort. The French spend the winter of 1535-1536 in Stadacona, because the strong winds began and, by then, it was too late to return to France.

The sailors reinforced the fort, stacked firewood, and salted down game and fish for the winter.

Scurvy broke out among the French. In his captain’s log, Cartier stated that by mid-February of 1536, “out of 110 that we were, not ten were well enough to help the others, a pitiful thing to see.” The French learned from the natives that a concoction made of pulp of a tree known as annedda would cure scurvy. This Indian remedy saved the expedition from perishing. Twenty-five sailors, however, didn’t survive the winter.

In the spring of 1536, Cartier decided to abandon the Petite Hermine, because he didn’t have enough hands to sail it. On July 15, 1536, after an arduous three-week Atlantic crossing, the explorers reached Saint-Malo, France.

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