We have tried to recall the days when, by these firesides, we re rocked the cradles of those who helped to make Canadian history, and to render more familiar the names and deeds of the great men, French, English and American, upon whose valour and wisdom such mighty issues depended.
er identified themselves by marriage and mode of life with the Indians, developed their traits of hardihood and acquired their knowledge of woodcraft and skill in navigating the streams. In pursuit of the fur-bearing animals in their native haunts, they shot the raging rapids, ventured out upon the broad expanse of the treacherous lakes, and endured without complaint the severity of winter and the exposure of forest life in summer.
[Illustration: CHATEAU DE RAMEZAY.]
Their ranks were continually increased by those who were impatient of the slow method of obtaining a livelihood from the tillage of the soil, when the husbandman was frequently driven from the plough by the sudden attack of Indian foes, or interrupted in his hasty and anxious harvesting by their war-whoop, or perhaps was compelled to leave his farm to take up arms, if the occasion arose, so that in many instances the homesteads were left to the old men, women and children. The excitement of the chase and the wild freedom of the plai