Samuel de Champlain searches for better site

On today’s date in 1605, Samuel de Champlain and Pierre Dugua de Mons began the search for a better site for their colony, sailing 650 kilometres south to Cape Cod, Mass., and drawing the first maps of New England coastline.

In 2014, the Royal Canadian Mint featured de Champlain on the third coin of its Great Explorers series. The pure gold Proof coin with a face value of $200 features de Champlain alongside a First Nations guide as they disembark from canoes on the Ontario shoreline. The coin was designed by Glen Green and has a limited mintage of 2,000.

Born into a family of French mariners in 1574, de Champlain began exploring North America in 1603 and eventually climbed to the top of society on this side of the pond. He went to New France in 1620 and spent the rest of his life improving the territory rather than exploring it. On March 1, 1632, he was appointed New France’s governor – the first ever.

After exploring sites in the Bay of Fundy along the Atlantic coast, Champlain selected Saint Croix Island (present-day Maine) in the St. Croix River as the site of the expedition’s first winter settlement. Following a particularly harsh winter on the island, the settlement was relocated across the bay, where it established as Port Royal.

Champlain used that site as his base until 1607, exploring and mapping the Atlantic coast all the while.

Champlain died on Christmas Day 1635 in Quebec City.

Leave a Reply

Keep up to date with the numismatic community

Sign up to receive our newsletter.

Canadian Coin News


Canadian Coin News is Canada's premier source of information about coins, notes and medals.

Although we cover the entire world of numismatics, the majority of our readers are Canadian, and we concentrate on the unique circumstances surrounding collecting in our native land.

Send Us Your Event

Running an event? Send it to us and we will display it on Canadian Coin News!

Submit Event →

Subscribe To 26 Issues For Just $47.99/year

Subscribe today to receive Canada's premier coin publication. Canadian Coin News is available in both paper and digital forms.

Subscribe Now

We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage.