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French-Canadian explorers, traders, and soldiers feature prominently in this country’s storytelling, but little has been written about their female counterparts. In Along a River, award-winning historian Jan Noel shines a light on the lives of remarkable French-Canadian women — immigrant brides, nuns, tradeswomen, farmers, governors‘ wives, and even smugglers — during the period between the settlement of the St. Lawrence Lowlands and the Victorian era. Along a River builds the case that inside the cabins that stretched for miles along the shoreline, most early French-Canadian women retained old fashioned forms of economic production and customary rights over land ownership. Noel demonstrates how this continued even as the world changed around them by comparing their lives to those of their contemporaries in France, England, and New England.Exploring how the daughters and granddaughters of the filles du roi adapted to their terrain, turned their hands to trade, and even acquired surprising influence at the French court, Along a River is an innovative and engagingly written history.


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