Purpose of our Group!
The Habitants of New France, Inc. is a nonprofit,
educational organization dedicated to interpreting the
history of the Great Lakes French Fur Trade Era c.1634
-1765. The Group owns and operates the historic reenactment
site, "Fort Bon Secours" as means to this end. The Habitants
also attend other historic reenactments for this purpose. We
welcome all interested persons who would like to visit our
site and/or participate in any of our events. As a group,
the Habitants are a highly motivated and skilled group of
reenactors who have dedicated themselves to the study of
this era of our nation's past. We would welcome all who
would like to join us and are willing to continue to learn.
Becoming a part of our reenactment group!
We understand that it is never easy to become a part of an
established organization, and especially when the group
requires so much knowledge and new skills. Please be patient
with yourself during the acquisition processówe will! We
know what it takes time to acquire the necessary skills to
become an accomplished reenactor.
Your first goal is to read through and digest as much
information about this era of history as you can. If you
have any questions or need assistance in locating good
materials don't hesitate to contact us. Next, you will need
to develop a personal character or "Persona"; this will take
time, and we suggest you develop a life "timeline" for your
character. Next, you will need to obtain the necessary
cloths and equipment for your character in order to be able
to sustain yourself while living at a rendezvous or event.
Know this can be expensive and will take time. We suggest
you visit us at our fort site and let us help assist you in
the process. We would be happy to allow you to "stay at the
Fort" and use our facilities until you have procured your
needed equipment. Finally, as you become a part of the
group, we will help coordinate some "interactive scenarios"
with you as you begin to interact with the public and become
a full-fledged member of the group.
This sounds like a lotóand it is! However, with the help of
the other members of the group and with a little practice
you will find that in no time you will become a confident
and competent reenactor. That's when the real fun and
enjoyment of history begins - as you learn to make history
Our Basic Group Scenario (the year is 1754-1755)
As a reenactment Group the" Habitants of New France" always
presents itself as an entourage of people who have recently
traveled to the western regions of New France for the
purpose of establishing a new community.
The entourage was first organized by Father Thomas, the
Jesuit Missionary, along with Ignace Rouillard, the Fur
Trader and Senior Partner of the Rouillard Fur Company.
Assigned to accompany the group has been Captain Gerard, a
young French Marine Military Officer who has being sent to
make a survey of the fortification of the western outposts.
Also joining the entourage is Robert LaSalle, a famed
Cartographer and Explorer sent by the governor to make a
more reliable maps of the region. Around these four
principle members a collection of Voyagers, Courier des
Bois, Servants, Soldiers and Indians has been formed to help
transport the entourage to its desired destination.
In addition to these four members, there are several
individuals that form an important part of the group: Madame
Couchette a courtesan and mistress to Monsieur Rouillard.
She seeks a husband and has made it abundantly clear she
will have one by the time the entourage reaches its
destination. Monsieur Ian Semus McLeod (Le Scott) and his
wife Lynette who are the wintering partners of Monsieur
Rouillard. They have came from the Michilimakinac to
accompany him on his journey westward. Monsieur McLeod has
continually expressed his concern about the lack of adequate
liquor supplies to be able to do profitable business with
the natives. Jan St. Luc, Monsieur Rouillard's nephew, who
has been retained as his clerk and assistant. Louis La Rouge
and his Lakota wife Wash-teh Wak-Pella have been engaged by
Father Thomas as guides and interpreters for his dealings
with the natives. These and other servants, voyagers,
soldiers and natives comprise the entourage headed for
Western New France. Because of the amount of baggage the
entourage carries, it has been required to travel at a very
slow pace. Consequently the entourage has only recently
reached the eastern most fringe of the Nadouaissioux country
(the Eastern Sioux) where they have chosen to build their
permanent site (Fort Bon Secours) and make contact with
Indian tribes of the area. Thus are the goals and nature of
the situation for the Habitants of New France. . .
(The Story Continues... !)