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The Saint Lawrence River
River
(French: Fleuve Saint-Laurent; Tuscarora: Kahnawáʼkye;[3] Mohawk: Kaniatarowanenneh, meaning "big waterway") is a large river in the middle latitudes of North America. The Saint Lawrence River
River
flows in a roughly north-easterly direction, connecting the Great Lakes
Great Lakes
with the Atlantic Ocean
Atlantic Ocean
and forming the primary drainage outflow of the Great Lakes
Great Lakes
Basin. It traverses the Canadian provinces of Quebec
Quebec
and Ontario, and is part of the international boundary between Ontario, Canada, and the U.S. state
U.S. state
of New York. This river also provides the basis of the commercial Saint Lawrence Seaway.

Contents

1 Geography 2 History 3 Resident whales 4 Sources 5 Works 6 See also 7 References 8 Further reading 9 External links

Geography[edit] The Saint Lawrence River
River
begins at the outflow of Lake Ontario
Ontario
and flows through Gananoque, Brockville, Morristown, Ogdensburg, Massena, Cornwall, Montreal, Trois-Rivières, and Quebec
Quebec
City before draining into the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, the largest estuary in the world.[4] The estuary begins at the eastern tip of Île d'Orléans, just downstream from Quebec
Quebec
City.[2] The river becomes tidal around Quebec City.[5] The Saint Lawrence River
River
runs 3,058 kilometres (1,900 mi) from the farthest headwater to the mouth and 1,197 km (743.8 mi) from the outflow of Lake Ontario. These numbers include the estuary; without the estuary the length from Lake Ontario
Ontario
is ca. 500 km (ca. 300 mi). The farthest headwater is the North River
River
in the Mesabi Range at Hibbing, Minnesota. Its drainage area, which includes the Great Lakes, the world's largest system of freshwater lakes, is 1,344,200 square kilometres (518,998.5 sq mi), of which 839,200 km2 (324,016.9 sq mi) is in Canada
Canada
and 505,000 km2 (194,981.6 sq mi) is in the United States. The basin covers parts of Ontario
Ontario
and Quebec
Quebec
in Canada, parts of Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Wisconsin, and nearly the entirety of the state of Michigan
Michigan
in the United States. The average discharge below the Saguenay River
Saguenay River
is 16,800 cubic metres per second (590,000 cu ft/s). At Quebec City, it is 12,101 m3/s (427,300 cu ft/s). The average discharge at the river's source, the outflow of Lake Ontario, is 7,410 m3/s (262,000 cu ft/s).[2] The Saint Lawrence River
River
includes Lake Saint-Louis
Lake Saint-Louis
south of Montreal, Lake Saint Francis at Salaberry-de-Valleyfield
Salaberry-de-Valleyfield
and Lac Saint-Pierre east of Montreal. It encompasses four archipelagoes: the Thousand Islands chain near Alexandria Bay, New York
Alexandria Bay, New York
and Kingston, Ontario; the Hochelaga Archipelago, including the Island of Montreal
Montreal
and Île Jésus (Laval); the Lake St. Pierre Archipelago
Archipelago
(classified biosphere world reserve by the UNESCO in 2000)[6] and the smaller Mingan Archipelago. Other islands include Île d'Orléans
Île d'Orléans
near Quebec City and Anticosti Island
Anticosti Island
north of the Gaspé. It is the second longest river in Canada. Lake Champlain
Lake Champlain
and the Ottawa, Richelieu, Saint-Maurice, Saint-François and Saguenay rivers drain into the Saint Lawrence. The Saint Lawrence River
River
is in a seismically active zone where fault reactivation is believed to occur along late Proterozoic
Proterozoic
to early Paleozoic
Paleozoic
normal faults related to the opening of Iapetus Ocean. The faults in the area are rift related and are called the Saint Lawrence rift system. According to the United States
United States
Geological Survey, the Saint Lawrence Valley is a physiographic province of the larger Appalachian division, containing the Champlain and Northern physiographic section.[7] However, in Canada, where most of the valley is, it is instead considered part of a distinct Saint Lawrence Lowlands
Saint Lawrence Lowlands
physiographic division, and not part of the Appalachian division at all.[8] History[edit]

Map of 1543 showing Cartier's discoveries

Basque settlements and sites dating from the 16th and 17th centuries

Though the Norse explored the Gulf of Saint Lawrence
Gulf of Saint Lawrence
in the 11th century and were followed by fifteenth and early sixteenth century European mariners, such as John Cabot, the brothers Gaspar, Miguel Corte-Real, and Alonso Sanchez, the first European explorer known to have sailed up the Saint Lawrence River
River
itself was Jacques Cartier. At that time, the land along the river was inhabited by the St. Lawrence Iroquoians; at the time of Cartier's second voyage in 1535. Because Cartier arrived in the estuary on Saint Lawrence's feast day, he named it the Gulf of Saint Lawrence.[9] The Saint Lawrence River
River
is partly within the U.S. and as such is that country's sixth oldest surviving European place-name.[10] The earliest regular Europeans in the area were the Basques, who came to the St Lawrence Gulf and River
River
in pursuit of whales from the early 16th century. The Basque whalers and fishermen traded with indigenous Americans and set up settlements, leaving vestiges all over the coast of eastern Canada
Canada
and deep into the Saint Lawrence River. Basque commercial and fishing activity reached its peak before the Armada Invencible's disaster (1588), when the Spanish Basque whaling fleet was confiscated by King Philip II of Spain
Philip II of Spain
and largely destroyed. Initially, the whaling galleons from Labourd
Labourd
were not affected by the Spanish defeat. Until the early 17th century, the French used the name Rivière du Canada
Canada
to designate the Saint Lawrence upstream to Montreal
Montreal
and the Ottawa River
River
after Montreal. The Saint Lawrence River
River
served as the main route for European exploration of the North American interior, first pioneered by French explorer Samuel de Champlain. Control of the river was crucial to British strategy to capture New France in the Seven Years' War. Having captured Louisbourg in 1758, the British sailed up to Quebec
Quebec
the following year thanks to charts drawn up by James Cook. British troops were ferried via the Saint Lawrence to attack the city from the west, which they successfully did at the Battle of the Plains of Abraham. The river was used again by the British to defeat the French siege of Quebec
Quebec
under the Chevalier de Lévis
Lévis
in 1760. Because of the virtually impassable Lachine Rapids, the Saint Lawrence was once continuously navigable only as far as Montreal. Opened in 1825, the Lachine Canal
Lachine Canal
was the first to allow ships to pass the rapids. An extensive system of canals and locks, known as the Saint Lawrence Seaway, was officially opened on 26 June 1959 by Elizabeth II (representing Canada) and President Dwight D. Eisenhower
Dwight D. Eisenhower
(representing the United States). The Seaway now permits ocean-going vessels to pass all the way to Lake Superior. During the Second World War, the Battle of the St. Lawrence
Battle of the St. Lawrence
involved submarine and anti-submarine actions throughout the lower Saint Lawrence River
River
and the entire Gulf of Saint Lawrence, Strait of Belle Isle and Cabot Strait
Cabot Strait
from May to October 1942, September 1943, and again in October and November 1944. During this time, German U-boats sank several merchant marine ships and three Canadian warships. In the late 1970s, the river was the subject of a successful ecological campaign (called "Save the River"), originally responding to planned development by the United States
United States
Army Corps of Engineers. The campaign was organized, among others, by Abbie Hoffman.[citation needed] Resident whales[edit] See also: Saguenay–St. Lawrence Marine Park

Watching fin whales off Tadoussac

Beluga whale
Beluga whale
(Near Threatened) Sperm whale
Sperm whale
(Vulnerable) Minke whale Fin whale
Fin whale
(Endangered) Blue whale
Blue whale
(Endangered) Northern bottlenose whale Northern Atlantic right whale
Northern Atlantic right whale
(now rarer due to Endangered status, but increasing in St. Lawrence regions since in 1995 or 1998[11])[12][13][14][15] Bowhead whale
Bowhead whale
(very occasionally, historically common) North Atlantic gray whale (Extinct)[16] Humpback whale

Sources[edit] The source of the North River
River
in the Mesabi Range
Mesabi Range
in Minnesota
Minnesota
(Seven Beaver Lake) is considered to be the source of the Saint Lawrence River. Because it crosses so many lakes, the water system frequently changes its name. From source to mouth, the names are:

North River[17] Saint Louis River[18] Lake Superior Saint Marys River Lake Huron Saint Clair River Lake Saint Clair Detroit River Lake Erie Niagara River Lake Ontario

The Saint Lawrence River
River
also passes through Lake Saint-Louis
Lake Saint-Louis
and Lake Saint-Pierre in Quebec.

Saint Lawrence River
River
between Quebec
Quebec
City (left foreground) and Lévis (seen at right). The Île d'Orléans
Île d'Orléans
appears in the central distance.

Works[edit] The Saint Lawrence River
River
is at the heart of many Quebec
Quebec
novels (Anne Hébert's Kamouraska, Réjean Ducharme's L'avalée des avalés), poems (in works of Pierre Morency, Bernard Pozier), and songs (Leonard Cohen's "Suzanne", Michel Rivard's "L'oubli", Joe Dassin's "Dans les yeux d'Émilie"), and André Gagnon's "Le Saint-Laurent"). The river was the setting for the Canadian television drama series Seaway. The river has also been portrayed in paintings, notably by the Group of Seven. In addition, the river is the namesake of Saint-Laurent Herald at the Canadian Heraldic Authority. In 1980 Jacques Cousteau
Jacques Cousteau
traveled to Canada
Canada
to make two films on the Saint Lawrence River
River
and the Great Lakes, Cries from the Deep and St. Lawrence: Stairway to the Sea.[19] Musician David Usher
David Usher
released the song "St. Lawrence River" on his Little Songs album in 1998.[20] The novel and film Black Robe
Black Robe
is set primarily on the St. Lawrence River
River
during the 17th century. See also[edit]

Gulf of Saint Lawrence Estuary
Estuary
of Saint Lawrence Lac Saint-Pierre Lachine Rapids RMS Empress of Ireland Saint Lawrence Seaway Steamboats in Canada NEPCO 140 Oil Spill Boldt Castle Container on barge Grindstone Island Jorstadt Castle Wellesley Island List of longest rivers of the United States
United States
(by main stem) List of longest rivers of Canada List of Quebec
Quebec
rivers List of Ontario
Ontario
rivers List of New York rivers List of crossings of the Saint Lawrence River

Geography of Canada
Canada
portal

References[edit]

^ Natural Resources Canada, Atlas of Canada
Canada
- Rivers ^ a b c Benke, Arthur C.; Cushing, Colbert E. (2005). Rivers of North America. Academic Press. pp. 989–990. ISBN 978-0-12-088253-3. Retrieved 21 March 2011.  ^ Rudes, B. Tuscarora English Dictionary Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1999 ^ Arkus, Mike (27 October 2014). "Down the St. Lawrence, the World's Largest Estuary: Canadian Odyssey on the Looney Front - Part 21". Huffington Post. Retrieved 12 February 2017.  ^ Dawson, Samuel Edward (October 2007). The Saint Lawrence: Its Basin and Border-lands. Heritage Books. p. 36. ISBN 978-0-7884-2252-2. Retrieved 21 March 2011.  ^ Lac Saint-Pierre
Lac Saint-Pierre
et son archipel. Pleinairalacarte.com (2008-11-07). Retrieved on 2013-07-12. ^ "Physiographic divisions of the conterminous U.S." U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved 2007-12-06.  ^ "Physiographic Regions of Canada" (PDF). Natural Resources Canada. Natural Resources Canada. Retrieved 18 February 2017.  ^ Johnson, William Henry (2007-05-20). French Pathfinders in North America. Gutenberg.org. Retrieved 2011-02-27.  ^ The Spanish names Florida, Dry Tortugas, Cape Canaveral, Appalachian, and California
California
appeared earlier.....From Spanish historian Antonio de Herrera y Tordesillas's accounts, published in 1601 -- Stewart, George (1945). Names on the Land: A Historical Account of Place-Naming in the United States. New York: Random House. pp. 11–17, 29.  ^ "Une baleine noire en vue! Merci d'appeler Urgences Mammifères Marins! - Baleines en direct".  ^ "Introduction". Archived from the original on 22 October 2013. Retrieved 5 February 2016.  ^ "Hear them coming: right whales return to the Gulf of St. Lawrence". Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Canada
Homepage. 2013-04-22. Retrieved 2016-02-05.  ^ "Une baleine noire dans le Parc marin du Saguenay-Saint-Laurent".  ^ "Une baleine noire observée près de l'île Rouge - Baleines en direct".  ^ Regional Species Extinctions - Examples of regional species extinctions over the last 1000 years and more. ^ "Saint Lawrence River
River
and Seaway". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 2009-09-07.  ^ "Saint Lawrence". MSN Encarta. Archived from the original on 6 July 2008. Retrieved 7 September 2009.  ^ Ohayon, Albert (2009). "When Cousteau Came to Canada". NFB.ca. National Film Board of Canada. Retrieved 2009-10-25.  ^ https://www.amazon.ca/Little-Songs-Usher-David/dp/B000065Q67/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1410971002&sr=8-5&keywords=little+songs

Further reading[edit]

Creighton, Donald Grant (2002) [1937], The empire of the St. Lawrence: a study in commerce and politics (reprint), University of Toronto Press, ISBN 0-8020-8418-4  Dawson, Samuel Edward (2003), The Saint Lawrence: Its Basin and Border-lands, Heritage Books, ISBN 0-7884-2252-9  Ellis, William S. (May 1980). "Canada's Highway to the Sea". National Geographic. Vol. 157 no. 5. pp. 586–623. ISSN 0027-9358. OCLC 643483454.  McNeese, Tim (2005), The St. Lawrence River, Chelsea House Publishers, ISBN 0791082458  Parham, Claire Puccia (2009), The St. Lawrence Seaway and Power Project : an oral history of the greatest construction show on earth, Syracuse University, ISBN 978-0-8156-0913-1  Stagg, Ronald (2010), The Golden Dream: A History of the St. Lawrence Seaway, Dundurn Press, ISBN 978-1-55002-887-4 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Saint Lawrence River.

Regional Geography of the Saint Lawrence River Information about Juniper Island (Ontario) St. Lawrence Parks Commission (Ontario) Great Lakes
Great Lakes
Saint Lawrence Seaway
Saint Lawrence Seaway
System Safe Passage: Aids to Navigation on the Saint Lawrence – Historical essay, illustrated with drawings and photographs Annotated Bibliography on St. Lawrence County and Northern New York region. International Saint Lawrence River
River
Board of Control Saint Lawrence River
River
from The Canadian Encyclopedia Saint Lawrence River
River
Cam Watch the Jacques Cousteau
Jacques Cousteau
documentary, St. Lawrence: Stairway to the Sea The Steamboats Sir James Kemp and Lord Dalhousie on the River
River
St. Lawrence, Upper Canada
Canada
in 1833 by D.J. Kennedy, Historical Society of Pennsylvania

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