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nephews, Father Anastase, Joutel, and Duhaut. For the convenience of travelling, La Salle ordered the five horses, which he had brought from the Cenis, to be loaded with provisions. This third ramble seems to have been dictated by necessity; for, in fact, he could remain no longer among the Clamcoets, and he missed the end he had proposed, which he pretended to be the discovery of the Mississippi, but which, in fact was to render himself master of the Spanish mine of St. Barbe, a more romantic enterprise than the other. Having travelled a little way, he met some savages, whom he knew so well how to humor, that they parted in an amicable manner. He then crossed many rivers ; but they increased so fast, and were sometimes so swollen by rains, that he resolved to build a large canoe for crossing them, to be carried over land upon poles, and this proved of singular use.
The countries through which he passed were extremely pleasant, and some of them populous. Three great villages, particularly, are named, Taraba, Tyakappon, and Palonna. The course by which he travelled was northeast; and at last he arrived at the country of the Palaquessens, who, he was told, were in alliance with the Spaniards. Among his attendants was one Hiens, whose true name was James, an English soldier, one Larcheveque, and a surgeon called Liotot. As it was impossible for
the travellers to carry with them a sufficiency of provisions to maintain them through the whole journey, they had recourse to hunting, the country through which they travelled being full of excellent game, and they divided themselves into small parties for that purpose. Moranget, La Salle's valet, and one Nika, an Indian, but a most admirable hunter, formed one of those parties, and, as it is reported, fell in with Dubaut, Hiens, and Liotot. A quarrel ensued, in which Moranget is said to have abused Duhaut, whose younger brother was suspected to have been put to death by La Salle's own hand. It is probable that the tyranny and insolence of La Salle determined those men to despatch him, but that they did not think themselves safe without first murdering Moranget, the valet and the hunter, a scheme which they accordingly executed, when they were asleep, in a most inhuman manner, Larcheveque and the pilot Tessier being their accomplices. Despair, rage, and misery prompted them to cross a river which lay between them and La Salle, to murder him likewise; but they were detained two days by the swelling of the waters. By this time La Salle became excessively uneasy, because Moranget and his two servants had not returned, and he resolved to go in quest of them, taking with him Father Anastase and an Indian, and recommending the care of his little encampment to Joutel. Having travelled a little way, he fired his gun at some eagles that were hovering in the air, which in those parts is a sure sign of carrion being near, and the discharge informed the assassins where he was. Two of them, Duhaut and Larcheveque, passed the river, and the former, concealing himself behind the bushes, instantly shot La Salle dead. Father Anastase expected the same fate, but was informed by the assassins that he was safe. Charlevoix and Hennepin have bestowed great encomiums upon La Salle's vast abilities, perseverance, spirit, and courage; but, admitting all they say to be true, every man of sense who reads his history must consider him no better than a madman, with lucid intervals. The manner of his death was, however, deplorable and, perhaps, a loss to the public. That he had made great discoveries of nations lying upon the Mississippi can scarcely be doubted; but his austere, reserved humor, joined to his pride and ambition (which seem to have been unbounded), prevented his opening himself to any confidant on that subject. The French court, long after his death, availed itself even of the manner of it, by pretending, in their memorials, that his discoveries comprehended the whole extent of the country to the Mississippi, and even to the west of that river.