Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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GAY, Picard dn, French explorer, lived in the 17th century. He accompanied Father Hennepin and Michael Ako on a voyage to explore the sources of the Mississippi river. They left Fort Crevecceur on 29 February, 1680, in a small canoe, and sailed down the Illinois river. After waiting for the Mississippi to become clear of floating ice, they turned northward, and on 11 April, 1680, arrived in Wisconsin, where they were surprised by a body of Indians in thirty-three canoes, who captured the party and seized their goods. On the following day the calumet was smoked, the rude treatment changed for civility, and the explorers were allowed to depart. After sailing nineteen days they came in view of the cataract, which Hennepin named the "Falls of St. Anthony," in honor of his patron saint. Subsequently they were captured by the Sioux, but were permitted various liberties, and Hennepin and Ako went on an exploring trip of several weeks, leaving Picard du Gay in charge of the sword, pistols, and powder. They remained in this region for three months, when they met a party of five Frenchmen under the command of Sieur du Luth, who had arrived by way of the St. Lawrence. Hennepin, Gay, and Ako joined this party, and, after wandering among the savage tribes for a while, returned to Canada in September, 1680.
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