the provincial stage
THE OPENING YEARS of the eighteenth century in New France saw a local man, the Marquis de Vaudreuil, appointed governor; he remained the king's representative from his appointment in 1705 until his death in 1725. Vaudreuil had come to Canada in 1687 and had risen through the various ranks of officialdom to the governorship of Montreal: from this place he was appointed to the chief command. He had married a Canadian wife and had come to be regarded by Canadians as one of themselves. His term coincides with a marked heightening of local self-consciousness. To this there is abundant testimony. The quotation referring to the various generations which have already been born on Canadian soil has been given in Chapter 5.1 The concomitant of this succession of the generations is a close-knit community, bound by neighbourhood blood ties: three generations go far to establish this. Then there are the first indications of tension between natives and metropolitan French, the first stirrings of that son-father antagonism which marks the growth of communities as it does that of individuals. By the time that Vaudreuil's native-born son had been appointed to the command previously held by his father, 1755, there could be no doubt: New France had attained the provincial stage in its social evolution and in that stage was, through the medium of the English Conquest, to pass out of history.
In both New France and New England, the provincial stage was probably hastened by the good times that followed the great wars of Louis XIV. There was peace between England and France from the signing of the Treaty of Utrecht, 1713, to the outbreak of King George's War, 1743; thirty years' freedom from border raids and Indian warfare, freedom to grow and to expand the economy. This was the period which saw New France establish and strengthen its lines of communi-