SAMUEL de CHAMPLAIN MONUMENT
A bronze monument to the famous French geographer and explorer Samuel de Champlain was born in 1567 in Brouage, France and died in Quebec City, Canada in 1635 as Governor of "New France". In 1609 he became the first European to explore this region and to behold our great forests and lofty mountains, and first to traverse this inland waterway, which later became so rich in fame. Following this visit the lake was named Champlain in his honor. This monument was dedicated on July 6, 1912 to the memory of Samuel de Champlain. It is 34 feet high and rising 61 1/2 feet above the level of the lake. The memorial to Samuel de Champlain consists of a statue and pedestal standing on a terrace of Massachusetts pink granite, in a park over-looking Lake Champlain. Its shield, carved in granite; at each side by a canoe prow with trophies typical of America in Champlain's time; and at the rear by a bronze tablet bearing the names of the Commissioners. The canoe prows were chosen because the birch bark canoe is one of the highest achievements, both constructively and artistically, of any primitive race, and is typical of Eastern North America. Strongly and ingeniously made of materials found in the woods, seaworthy, capable of carrying a heavy load, and so light that it could easily be carried from one waterway to another, it provided the quickest and easiest means of travel for the Indians and for the explorers of this part of the country. The upper part of the pedestal is decorated with carved garlands of Indian corn. The statue of Champlain, which is nearly 12 feet high and of bronze, represents him in his soldier costume holding in his hand the arquebuse of which he speaks in his memoirs. This and his breastplate, helmet or morion, cloak, doublet, boots, and sword follow carefully the style of the period.
Samuel de Champlain (painting in Clinton County Community College, Plattsburgh, NY)