Many of the branches of the river Mississippi come so near Philadelphia Map to the branches of several of the rivers which empty themselves into the great lakes, that in Philadelphia Map several places there is but a short land-carriage from the one to the other. As soon as they have got into the River Mississippi, they open to themselves as large a field for traffic in the southern parts of North Country, as was before mentioned with respect to the northern parts. If one considers the length of this river and its numerous branches, he must say, that by means of this river and the lakes, there is opened to his view such a scene of inland navigation as cannot be paralleled in any other part of the world.
The French have, with much industry, settled small colonies, and built stockaded forts at all the considerable passes between the lakes, except between Cataracui Lake, called by the French Ontario, and Lake Erie, one of our Five Nations of Indians, whom we call Senecas, and the French Sonontouans, having hitherto refused them leave to erect any buildings there. The French have been indefatigable in making discoveries, and carrying on their commerce with nations, of whom the English know nothing but what they see in the French maps and books. The barrenness of the soil, and the coldness of the climate of Canada, obliges the greatest number of the inhabitants to seek their living by travelling among the Indians, or by trading with those who do travel.
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