Daniel de Rémy, seigneur de Courcelles

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Daniel de Rémy, seigneur de Courcelles

Also Known As: "de Rhémy"
Birthdate: (72)
Birthplace: Arques-la-Bataille, Seine-Maritime, Upper Normandy, France
Death: circa October 24, 1698 (68-76)
Toulon, Var, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France
Immediate Family:

Son of Adrien de Rémy de Courcelles and Hélène de Nollent
Husband of Marie Anne d'Abancourt
Father of Louis de Rémy and Claude de Rémy

Managed by: Rhonda-Lee Robin Allen Barber, U.E.
Last Updated:

About Daniel de Rémy, seigneur de Courcelles

Governor general of New France from 1665 to 1672. 
A nobleman and a military officer, he arrived at Québec "breathing nothing but war" and determined to defeat the powerful Iroquois Confederacy.

His main contributions to the colony during his tenure were the actions he took to resolve conflicts amongst the various Indian tribes and to raise the status of the French within the native societies. This promoted peace for New France and retained substantial fur trade that was in danger of being taken over by the Dutch and the English. He also approved Robert La Salle's plan to mount expeditions to seek a western passage to China.

On the 29th of December 1666, Monsieur Courcelles, the Governor of Canada, began his march with near six hundred men to seek out, their inveterate enemies , called the Mohawk Indians, in their own country and forts, there to take revenge upon them for the murders and spoils which the barbarians, had for many years ,exercised upon the French and the Indians of those parts to the ruin of most. They marched over the frozen Lake of Canada, (Champlain ) , taking their time, until the snow upon the ground was hard frozen, though in most places four feet deep. They made use of Indian snow-shoes, which have the form of a racket, tied to each foot, whereby the body and feet and kept from sinking into the snow, and because it was not possible for the horses to pass or subsist in snow, or for the soldiers to carry their necessary provisions on their backs. With no expectation of meeting relief in the vast wilderness, Courcelles caused slight sledges to be made in good number , and laying provisions on them, drew them over the snow with Mastiff dogs.

 All these difficulties impeded his march, and by the mistake of his guides, happened to fall short of the castles of the Mohawks, and to take up his quarters, or  rather, encamp upon the 9th of February within two miles of a small village, called `Schonectade`, lying in the woods beyond Fort Albany, and three days march from the first castle of the Mohawks.
The French supposed they were come to their designed place ; and the rather , because that evening they met with a party of the Mohawks, who made appearance of retreating from the French, whereupon 60 of the best fusileers  were sent after them; but that small party drew the French into an ambuscade of  near 200 Mohawks, planted behind the tress, who at one volley, slew 11 Frenchmen, whereof one was a lieutenant, and wounded divers others. The French party made an honorable retreat to their main body, which was marching after them close at hand. This gave the Mohawks time and opportunity to march off with the loss of only three slain and six wounded. The report was soon brought to Schonectade by these Indians, with the heads of four of the French, to the Commissary of the village. The next day upon invitation, Courcelles sent his wounded men, seven in number , to the village, where they were carefully dressed and sent to Albany.
"The Dutch farmers of Schenectady carried to the camp such provisions as they had, especially peas and bread, of which a  good quantity was bought. The Mohawks were all gone to their castles , with resolution to fight it out against the French, who, being refreshed and supplied by the Dutch with provisions, made a show of marching towards the Mohawk castles, but with faces about, and great silence and diligence , returned towards Canada."     ( Lond. Doc 11; Doc. Hist. of N.Y., Vol. 1, Pg 71.)
    from the  Centennial address relating to the early history of Schenectady and its first settlers 
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Daniel de Rémy, seigneur de Courcelles's Timeline

May 3, 1626
Arques-la-Bataille, Seine-Maritime, Upper Normandy, France
October 23, 1680
Age 54
Toulon, Var, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France
October 28, 1681
Age 55
Toulon, Var, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France
October 24, 1698
Age 72
Toulon, Var, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France