In Québec, the Saint Lawrence is quite busy indeed; numerous small steamships crisscross it, ferrying passengers from one point to another, since the city spreads over a peninsula between Saint Charles and Saint Lawrence Rivers. Long ships with full sail on leaving or returning to Montréal, great transatlantic steamships leaving a long trail of black smoke; all this greatly livens up this imposing river which here narrows down to a width of fifteen hundred meters. Downtown Québec has retained its original character and is no different from our French cities; in this respect, Québec is unique in Canada and North America where, as it is well known, a same master plan, altogether different from what can be seen in Europe, has been adopted for the layout of cities.
Upstream from Québec, the banks of the Saint Lawrence display an uninterrupted succession of villages which have faithfully maintained the habits and customs of the old French lordly domains, except that since there are no lords any more, it's the parish that has endured: nowhere here can be seen the big machicolated tower with its drawbridge that in bygone days protected the inhabitants and housed the lord's family: instead, it is a church with a high steeple, clad with tinplates shining in the sun, which acts as a rallying point. Indeed, the parish priest and his vicars guide this peaceful population of farmers and fishermen, in return for the payment of the ancient tithe. These Frenchmen have few needs apart from those that can be met by the product of fishing, farming and hunting.
The neighboring town's markets take their extra money in exchange for the few items they have to buy. Hitherto, the extraordinary number of children produced in every family was, for the French Canadians, more a cause of weariness than of misery. Since there was still plenty of uncultivated land around the villages, which were all built next to navigable water courses or to the St Lawrence itself, the offspring either benefited from land that had already been cleared or moved over a short distance to create new hives: this is how both banks of the St Lawrence, which are rather flat and fertile, were progressively occupied and farmed by descendants of the first Frenchmen. This sector was cleared and farmed in Lower Canada, where the population of Frenchmen when l'angleterre took the country over today numbers .
Most of those Frenchmen who remained in Canada after 1791 were those who did not have enough money to return to France (or who had not yet managed to clear some land and make a living off it), as Englishmen were hated to such an extent that the prospect of remaining under their rule was long contemplated with awe.
Therefore these Frenchmen remained in the countryside and this is where we find them now.
Tied to the glebe they remained, while, thanks to their capital, the English progressively took over the emerging trade and industry. However, with time, even the farmland left to our race became congested in Québec province, and these latest years have seen the Frenchmen leaving their plows and traveling in numbers to the southern provinces of Massachusetts and Ohio to earn from the United States manufacturers the bread they don't find at home any more. Thus, they are emigrating for a second time, while religiously maintaining their name, their language, and their parish group system. Some go further west to Manitoba where the climate is harsh but the soil fertile in wheat: some of them infiltrate singly into the Protestant and English province of Ontario. However, outside Lower Canada, they have less elbow room. Conflicts often arise between the two races: the press, the Parliament in Ottawa too often echo their grievances and demands.
Upstream from Québec, the greatest steamships can still navigate up to up to Montréal, though they have to follow a buoyed channel; on the left bank, roughly half-way, three clear water rivers flow into the St Lawrence. The main one: the St Maurice, is still navigable and floats huge amounts of wood from the distant northern regions. This town, Trois-Rivières, founded by the French in 1618 because of its rich iron ore, which abounds in the neighboring country, is today more than ever a metallurgy center.