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Henri Peyroux de Ia Coudrenière was born in France around 1743, the son of Marguerite-…

A detail from Thomas Hutchins’s 1778 map of the Illinois Country showing Ste. Genevieve, Kaskaskia, and Fort de Chartres. [Courtesy of the David Rumsey Historical Map Collection, Image 5045002]

During the first half of the eighteenth century, marriages between Native Americans and…

Charles de Hault Delassus. [Missouri Historical Society, St. Louis, Photographs and Prints Collection, N36696]

Following the Louisiana Purchase, Charles de Hault Delassus, Upper Louisiana’s last Spanish lieutenant…

Jeffrey Deroine (second from right) with Ioways. [State Historical Society of Missouri, Robert Wright Photograph Collection, P0011]

Jeffrey Deroine (pronounced Der-oh-NAY…

This 1778 map of the Illinois Country by Thomas Hutchins depicts the region as it appeared during Israel Dodge’s lifetime. [Courtesy of the David Rumsey Historical Map Collection, Image 5045002]

Israel Dodge exemplified the adventurous spirit of a young, expanding United States at the turn of the…

Louis William DuBourg. [Georgetown University Archives, Booth Family Center for Special Collections, Washington, DC]

William DuBourg was a formidable force for Catholicism and for education in the early…

1.	This lithograph depicts Sister Rose Philippine Duchesne late in life. No known photographs of Sister Duchesne are known to exist.

Rose Philippine Duchesne, a French pioneer missionary on the American frontier, was born on…

A detail from the Finiels map of the Mississippi River showing the area around St. Louis. The original is in the Archives de la Marine, Chateau, Vincennes, France. [Courtesy of Carl J. Ekberg]

Nicolas de Finiels, an expatriate French engineer who served the Spanish monarchy during…

Paul Follenius. [State Historical Society of Missouri, William G. Bek Photograph Collection, P0586]

Paul Follenius, the cofounder with

Aerial of Fort Osage

Established in 1808 under the superintendence of…