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Synopsis

Pierre-Esprit Radisson (1636–1710) was a French-Canadian fur trader and explorer. He is often linked to his brother-in-law Medard des Groseilliers who was about 20 years older. The decision of Radisson and Groseilliers to enter the English service led to the formation of the Hudson's Bay Company.

Born near Avignon in 1636, he came to New France at an early age. While out duck-hunting he was captured by the Mohawks and adopted by his captors. He learned their language and way of life and joined them in their wars. While out hunting with an Algonquin and three Mohawks the captives killed their captors and escaped but were quickly hunted down. The Algonquin was killed and Radisson was tortured until he was rescued by his Indian 'family'. He later escaped to Fort Orange (Albany) where he served as an interpreter.

Radisson wrote his "Voyages" in 1668/9 in England after a storm prevented him from joining the first expedition to Hudson Bay.

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