HISTORY OF CANADA. 27
this time there were at Ste. Marie-on-the-Wye, in addition to the resident fathers, a number of devoted laymen, and a few soldiers, who had managed to carry with them from Quebec a small cannon for the protection of the fort. In the spring of 1649 the onslaught cane. The Iroquois came in upon them from the south, and the outlying post of St. Ignace was the first to fall. Here Father Daniel, bravely administering the last consolations of religion to his falling flock, was struck down. The Iroquois then attacked St. Louis, and after a vigorous defence it, too, was taken. Here two Jesuit fathers, Brebwuf and Lalemant, were captured and put to death with fiendish torture. Then, alarmed by a rumor that the Huron braves were gathering in force to repel them, the Iroquois rapidly retreated ; only, however, to return next year to complete their work of destruction.
The Mission Abandoned.—Meanwhile Ste. Marie-on-the-Wye was sorrowfully abandoned, and the Jesuit priests, with refugees to the number of seven thousand from all the Huron villages, spent a winter of misery on Christian Island. Nearly one-half of them died before spring, and the survivors fled in terror on learning that the Iroquois were again on the war-path. From over thirty villages the Huron country sank to a desolation. Some of the flying Hurons were led by the Jesuit fathers by way of the Ottawa to Quebec, and their descendants are now to be found—harmless guides and basket-makers—at New Lorette, not far from the ancient capital. The remainder fled to the north. For a while they were to be found in the neighbor-hood of the Sault Ste. Marie. Gradually they were driven farther west by their relentless foes until, finally, the few survivors settled in the neighborhood of Detroit. There we find them at the time
of the Pontiac war (1763), a brave tribe under the name Wyandots. f,.
The Iroquois Attack the Settlements.— After the destruction of the Huron villages, the Iroquois were able to devote more time to harassing the French settlers along the St. Lawrence. Montreal, lying directly in their path, was an object of continual attack, and pious historians affirm that it held its own "only by a continuous miracle." At Three Rivers the settlers were practically confined within the village palisades. Iroquois vengeance pursued the Hurons even to their new home on the Island of Orleans, opposite Quebec, and the terror of the