Commissioned by King Francois I of France to claim new lands for the country, Jacques Cartier arrived in Newfoundland in 1534. Seeking a Northwest Passage to the riches of India, he continued on and discovered the St. Lawrence River, a natural border existing between present-day Canada and New England. Cartier briefly explored the area and sailed back to France, only to return to the St. Lawrence with two American Indians as guides. His findings contributed to the founding of Montreal and Quebec and the creation of a lucrative trading network between the French and the American Indians. "Jacques Cartier" is a biography about the first explorer to establish a French presence in North America, an accomplishment that allowed the next generation of French sailors to create the first settlements in Canada.