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The Bourgeois Frontier – French Towns, French Traders, and American Expansion - Yale Scholarship Online
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The Bourgeois Frontier: French Towns, French Traders, and American Expansion

Jay Gitlin


Histories tend to emphasize conquest by Anglo-Americans as the driving force behind the development of the American West. However, this book argues that the activities of the French are crucial to understanding the phenomenon of westward expansion. The Seven Years War brought an end to the French colonial enterprise in North America, but the French in towns such as New Orleans, St. Louis, and Detroit survived the transition to American rule. French traders from mid-America, such as the Chouteaus and Robidouxs of St. Louis, then became agents of change in the West, perfecting a strategy of “mid ... More

Keywords: fur trade, Anglo-Americans, American West, expansion, France, Seven Years War, New Orleans, St. Louis, Detroit, American settlement

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2009 Print ISBN-13: 9780300101188
Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013 DOI:10.12987/yale/9780300101188.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jay Gitlin, author