From 1640 to 1642, the Iroquois continuously raided French settlements and Huron canoes along the St. Lawrence River. Chevalier de Montagny, the Governor of Quebec, ordered the construction of a fortified settlement on an island upriver from Trois-Rivières. In 1642, Paul de Chomédy, the Sieur de Maisonneuve, established Ville Marie (Montreal). In the same year, de Montagny built Fort Richelieu south of Montreal on the Richelieu River. The Richelieu flowed from Lake Champlain to the St. Lawrence and was the main invasion route for Mohawk war parties into New France.

Fort Richelieu proved to be ineffective in preventing Iroquois raids. The Mohawk simply bypassed the fort on their way to the St. Lawrence settlements. The French abandoned the fort in 1644, and the Mohawks burnt it to the ground in 1645.


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