• The freshwater river between Lake Ontario and Quebec City
• The St. Lawrence estuary from Quebec City to Anticosti Island
• The saltwater Gulf of the St. Lawrence that leads to the Atlantic Ocean.
Back in the 1850s, tens of thousands of Irish fled to countries such as America and Canada through the St. Lawrence River in famine ships, hoping for a better life. These countries and others welcomed them with open arms. But getting from Quebec City to the Thousand Islands Region was no easy task.
In the 1850s, they used a French batteau—a large canoe—to take passengers up the two-hundred and fifty feet of falls and rapids to get to the Upper St. Lawrence, home of the 1,864 Thousand Islands. In 1959, the St. Lawrence Seaway opened to bypass these dangerous waters and link the Great Lakes with the St. Lawrence River and the ocean through a series of canals, locks, and channels.
Commercial fishing and pollution have depleted fishing, but conservation is helping balance the river, little by little. Salmon, herring, and sturgeon have been overfished, but sports fishermen—and women—still enjoy many stretches of the river famous for their small and largemouth bass, northern pike, carp, and muskellunge (a.k.a. muskies).
Animals of the St. Lawrence
About eighty-three land and aquatic mammals call the river and its gulf home, including the beluga whale. The river is also part of the Atlantic Flyway, where at least 400 species of birds, such as bald eagles, ospreys, and black terns, reside and migrate. During the early 1900s, the fox, beaver, mink, and muskrat were threatened by the fur industry, but most have come back to a healthy level.
More than 1,700 species of plants include the rare lady’s-slipper orchid. Springtime blooms beautiful, summer is splendid, and the autumn is epic. It truly is a lovely piece of the world.
What else would you like to know about the mighty St. Lawrence River? Leave your answer or comments on the post below and join me on the 19th for my next post.
After struggling to accept the changes forced upon her, Margaret Hawkins and her family take a perilous journey on an 1851 immigrant ship to the New World, bringing with her an Irish family quilt she is making.
A hundred and sixty years later, her great granddaughter, Maggie, searches for the family quilt after her ex pawns it. But on their way to creating a family legacy, will these women find peace with the past and embrace hope for the future, or will they be imprisoned by fear and faithlessness?
Susan G Mathis is an international award-winning, multi-published author of stories set in the beautiful Thousand Islands, her childhood stomping ground in upstate NY. Susan has been published more than 20 times in full-length novels, novellas, and non-fiction books.
Her first two books of The Thousand Islands Gilded Age series, Devyn’s Dilemma and Katelyn’s Choice are available now, and she’s working on book three. The Fabric of Hope: An Irish Family Legacy, Christmas Charity, and Sara’s Surprise, and her newest, Reagan’s Reward, are also available. Susan’s books have won numerous awards, including two Illumination Book Awards, the American Fiction Award, the Indie Excellence Book Award, and the Literary Titan Book Award. Visit www.SusanGMathis.com for more.