LaSalle'sGriffin Several modern writers, particularly mid-20th century Jesuit authors Campeau and Delanglez, have tried to create the perception among modern readers that there is a "missing Jolliet Map." If there was a lost map of Jolliet's, this is it. Seen among other maps attributed to Jolliet (as many as six), some definitely have the distinctive shape of the Mississippi found on this map, and the distinctive shapes of its branching tributaries, as well -- the Illinois and Wisconsin Rivers. However, these other "Jolliet" maps are not authentically what they claim to be.

The Lost Map of Jolliet
La Frontenacie


Map of Jolliet's recollection, as set down by an unknown calligrapher in 1674, under royal engineer Huges Randin, who served in the Canadian government under Governor Frontenac. Frontenac is still well remember today.

Jolliet's lost map, "La Frontenacie"   Chateau Frontenac, Quebec




An unknown calligrapher in Quebec, the Canadian capital, drew the map in late 1674 first hand from Louis Jolliet's recollection, probably his own rough sketch, of his Mississippi expedition the year before. The handwriting is not Jolliet's, many examples of which are easily found. Neither is it in the hand of Hugh Randin, who shortly will be seen to have used La Frontenacie as a subsection of his own map (Cf. Brown U.).

Under the authority of Huges Randin, Governor Frontenac's engineer, the calligrapher drew this first map of the Mississippi. But of equal importance to the Mississippi exploration, the map shows the waterway boundries of La Frontenacie, named after the Governor. Jolliet hoped that by his explorations in the service of Crown, he would gain Frontenacie as a feifdom.

After spending the winter, 1673-74 in the upper lakes country, after the spring thaw, he left to report to the Governor. Before Jolliet got to Quebec, in late summer 1674, his conoe overturned in the rapids near Montreal. He reported to the goverenor and to the Jesuit superior, Claude Dablon, that he lost all his papers concerning the expedition. Jolliet made it clear that he had a copy of his map and written report preserved in safe keeping out west, and that the papers would be down, after the thaw, the following spring (of 1675). But no documents are known ever to have come down. Frontenac sent Jolliet's material, a map and a letter, to Paris in November, 1674. Jesuit superior Dablon sent Jolliet's material to Paris also, that same November, but he had with great premeditation written Marquette into the story. Also, and significant to the intertwining of events and motives, LaSalle was on that same flotilla, himself with evidence of his explorations, in hindsight, in competition with Jolliet.

Historians have never questioned Jolliet on the simple matter of "where were the back up maps and other papers?" that never came. None are recorded. On that fact alone, that is, that no Jolliet papers ever turned up, Jolliet is a focus of doubt. There are other reasons to doubt Jolliet's story, noteably, first hand accounts.


At the time, winter 1674-75, LaSalle, on his first of four return trips to France, was greatly rewarded by the kings with a grant of nobility and a fiefdom. This for his explorations and discoveries for the French Empire. In response to his letter and his map, sent from Quebec in 1674, Jolliet received nothing. In 1680 Jolliet was rewarded with the seigneury of Anti Costa Island. Included in the "Title in favor of Louis Jolliet," among other acheivements listed, was his exploration of the Illinois Country.


full article


"why would a Jesuit in the mid-1800s want to inflate the history of the Jesuits of the 17th century? Obviously, in order to make themselves look better to their contemporaries, but more specifically, to the many Catholics pouring into the Heartland of America. No need for fake history, says Buisseret, to make themselves look good, because the Jesuit Relations, written in the 17th century, are an inviolate original record of Jesuit accompishments."




Current issues relate to the plagiarism of Buisseret and Kupfer.

See "Invalidating the Jacques Marquette Map" in which, in addition to many other things, I spell out the plagiarism in much more detail than in the affidavit below. Respecting "Validating the 1673 Marquette Map," by Buisseret and Kupfer, several times I sent proof of plagiarism to the advisory board of the Journal of Illinois History. They are responsible for dealing with plagiarism, according to Jennifer Hogan, Director of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, as related to my Illinois State Assemblywoman, Linda Chapa LaVia. Not one of the advisory board members responded. I sent this plagiarism information to other agencies, including the Office of Executive Inspector General. As Rep. Chapa LaVia's office characterized it, I am getting the "runaround." In my opinion, nobody wants to tell the emporers about their new clothes, but in this instance, the emporers are in on the swindle.

I also, in "Invalidating," give numerous examples of the easily refuted "scholardhip" of Buisseret and Kupfer present. Many things are not correct. I also shake my head in disbelief that the Journal of Illinois History let this travesty of research slip through.

See a summary of the three points in the plagiarism.

Affidavit documentation on Buisseret/ Kupfer Plagiarism in Journal of Illinois History.
The Facts and Demonstration of the Plagiarism


Anticipating Further Progress

The Montreal Recit

Marquette Map Not on 1845 Inventory of Felix Martin


1650-1700 Maps French Colonial

Jacques Marquette Map

DuPage County, Illinois, Etymology

Marquette Map Hoax: Conference on Illinois History



For information and questions about my work in this area,

Carl J. Weber contact

Buisserets Five Documents.html