The Landfall of Jean Nicolet | Painting | Wisconsin Historical Society


The Landfall of Jean Nicolet


Jean Nicolet (1598-1642) was the first European to see Wisconsin and was a prominent French explorer who, for many years, lived among the Indians of Quebec. In 1634, Samuel de Champlain, the Governor of New France, sent Nicolet west on a journey to explore the great interior. According to the records of the Catholic Jesuit missionaries, Nicolet and his seven companions traveled from Quebec via Lake Huron, through the straits of Mackinac into Lake Michigan, stopping at the shores of what is now Green Bay. Nicolet expected to encounter Asian peoples. He donned a Chinese damask robe to greet them but met, instead, a small group of Menomonee Indians. Believing that Nicolet was a son of the gods, the Menomonee celebrated with a great feast in his honor.


Image ID: 1870

Creation Date: 1907 

Creator Name: Deming, Edwin Willard



State: Wisconsin

Collection Name: WHS Museum Collection

Genre: Painting

Original Format Type: paintings

Original Format Number: 1942.487

Original Dimensions: unknown





Clothing and dress


Indians of North America

Intellectual life

Manners and customs


Menominee Indians

Michigan, Lake



Special days


Voyages and travels


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