The territory bordering on the Mississippi was called Louisiana. That in the St Lawrence region was called New France along the river and Acadia down by the Gulf; though Canada is much the best word to cover both. Now, Canada had ten times as many people as Louisiana; and Louisiana by itself seemed helplessly weak. This very weakness made the French particularly anxious about the country south of the Lakes, where Canada and Louisiana met. For, so long as they held it, they held the gateways of the West, kept the valleys of the Ohio and Mississippi quite securely, shut up the British colonies between the Alleghany Mountains and the Atlantic and prevented them from expanding westward. One other thing was even more vital than this to the French in America: it was that they should continue to hold the mouth of the St Lawrence. Canada could live only by getting help from France; and as this help could not come up the Mississippi it had to come up the St Lawrence.
The general position of the French