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Louis Joliet was a 17th century Canadian explorer who, aided by Native American communities, explored the origins of the Mississippi River.
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He returned to fur trading in 1676, setting up a business in the northern region of the St. Lawrence and also working as a merchant in the Mingan Archipelago. He took on another exploratory mission in 1679, at the behest of French colonists, to survey English and Native American trading relations in the Hudson Bay area.
Toward the end of the 17th century, Joliet was internationally known for his expeditions,
from which official regional maps were created. Joliet went on another trip in 1694 to make detailed observations of the Labrador Coast, and in 1697, became a hydrography professor at the University of Quebec. He died in 1700.
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Throughout the centuries, brave explorers have fearlessly traveled the globe and beyond to discover new lands, people, animal species, riches and glory. Ferdinand Magellan of Portugal proved the world is round with his mission to sail around the world. His fellow countryman Vasco da Gama commanded the first European ship around the southern tip of Africa to reach India by sea. Norseman Leif Eriksson is regarded as the first European to reach North America, nearly 500 years before Christopher Columbus, who is credited with discovering the “New World” of the Americas. Juan Ponce de León scoured Puerto Rico and Florida in his quest for the fountain of youth. Meriwether Lewis and William Clark blazed new trails during their Corps of Discovery Expedition across the western half of the United States. Traveling to new heights of discovery were mountain climber Sir Edmund Hillary, the first man to reach the peak of Mount Everest, and U.S. astronaut Neil Armstrong, the first human to walk on the moon. These intrepid explorers and more have made an indelible mark on human history. See all Explorers.
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