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Champlain, Samuel de 1567-1635 French navigator; born in Brouage, France, in 1567. His family had many fishermen and Samuel De Champlain. mariners, and he was carefully educated for a navigator. In early life he was in the cavalry of Brittany, and was with his uncle, pilot-general of the fleets of Spain, when that officer conducted back to that country the troops who had served in France. In 1599 he commanded a vessel of the Spanish fleet that sailed to Mexico, and he drew up a faithful account of the voyage. On his return he received a pension from Henry IV. of France; and he was induced by M. de Chastes, governor of Dieppe, to explore and prepare the way for a. French colony in America. Chastes had received a charter from the King to found settlements in New France, and the monarch commissioned Champlain lieutenant-general of Canada. With this authority, he sailed from Honfleur on March 5, 1603, with a single vessel, commanded by Pont-Greve, a skilful navigator. In Ma