Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
C. Blythe Ahlstrom
Considering this paper for a Seminar in Early Colonial History, became particularly interested in the French colonization efforts in the New World. My interest stems from the fact that I am a teacher of American History in the Public School system of the State of Utah. Due to the meager information contained in the textbooks used, most Americans know very little about the beginning of the French settlements and their impact upon the French Colonial Empire. Americans have heard of the French cities of Quebec, Montreal, New Orleans, and some others. They are aware that on the plains of Abraham the fate of the French Colonial Empire in North America was seal ed. England became the supreme colonial power in that area.
At first, I had thought to trace the location and growth of these early French settlements and their struggle for survival. However, as I began my research and collection of information, the story of the Huguenot settlements in the New World and their persecutions in Europe began to intrigue me. I began to wonder what influence these Huguenot settlements may have had on the building of the French Colonial Empire in the New World.
The French religious wars between the government of France and the Huguenots had caused severe persecutions of these Huguenots, and political factions began to flourish along with deep hatred for each other, both of which were far reaching.
Philip II of Spain did not like these Huguenot heretics settling upon land in the New World claimed by Spain. He intervened and was the final contributing cause to the failure of the colonization attempt of 1564 in the Carolinas.
Charles I of England using as a pretense the Huguenot persecutions declared war on France. This war spread to the French colonies in North America and eventually France, in 1763, did lose her colonial empire in the Canadian area to England.
It is my desire to stimulate thinking as to what influence the Huguenots ' colonization attempts may have had on the fate of the French Colonial Empire in the New World.
Ringle, Daniel J., "The Effects of Huguenot Settlements Upon the French Colonial Empire" (1971). All Graduate Plan B and other Reports. 632.