Our examination of René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle continues in this episode, as we follow the progress of the 1976-77 La Salle II Expedition, which ran into rough weather in Door County, Wisconsin and plot their progress as winter forces the crew out of their canoes to walk or portage the frozen rivers and roads, as they try to make it to the Mississippi. Author Lorraine Boissoneault shares her insights from her book The Last Voyageurs and we interview Reid & Ken Lewis who organized this epic reenactment and and Rich Gross who was part of the crew on this trek seeking the Gulf of Mexico.
We also gained fascinating insights from our interview with veteran broadcaster Paul Meincke recounting his 2017 trip canoeing the Mississippi from its headwaters to the Gulf and the ever present dangers of paddling this river of commerce of America’s heartland.
Links to Research and History Documents
- Images from La Salle II Expedition
- Lorriane Boissoneault’s book The Last Voyageurs
- Mississippi by Canoe – video by Paul Meincke of four retirees paddling from the headwaters to the Gulf of Mexico in 2017
- Natural History Museum at Lords Park in Elgin, Illinois
- Hard Waters; The Untold Story of La Salle: Expedition II, by Craig P. Howard
- Tabor Hill Winery in Buchanan, Michigan co-founded by Len Olsen, who created the sparkling wine Décidons Demain meaning “Let’s decide tomorrow” in support of the reenactment.