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The Bourgeois FrontierFrench Towns, French Traders, and American Expansion$
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Jay Gitlin

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780300101188

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300101188.001.0001

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“La Confédération Perdue”: The Legacy of Francophone Culture in Mid-America

“La Confédération Perdue”: The Legacy of Francophone Culture in Mid-America

(p.156) 8 “La Confédération Perdue”: The Legacy of Francophone Culture in Mid-America
The Bourgeois Frontier

Jay Gitlin

Yale University Press

By the end of the nineteenth century, the legacy and historical importance of the French in mid-America seemed to have faded. While the Canadian connection and context had been reinforced in northern states such as Michigan and Minnesota, the once vital francophone worlds of St. Louis and New Orleans were on the decline. In St. Louis, however, the death of that legacy would be contested by a number of Chouteau descendants, including Pierre Chouteau. The public face of French culture in the city had mostly disappeared by the Civil War. In Louisiana, Francophones viewed the invaders from the North as a new horde of vandals out to destroy their linguistic lifestyle and cultural community. During the war, Creoles feared that a new wave of abolitionists and Anglocentric Yankees would ruin the delicate local balance they had established.

Keywords:   mid-America, French culture, St. Louis, New Orleans, Pierre Chouteau, Civil War, Louisiana, Francophones, Creoles, French culture

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