John Henry Lydius - contrebandier

Son of Dutch settlers established in Albany, Lydius spent part of his youth with a Kanienkehaka (Mohawk) clan of the colony of New York. After moving to Montreal in 1725, he married Geneviève Massé, the Métis* daughter of a merchant. Through his contacts with the Indigenous Nations, Lydius became a formidable competitor in the fur trade.

Accused of smuggling in 1730, Lydius was deported to France, but he quickly returned to America. On the trade route between Montreal and Albany, he built Fort Lydius, an establishment located on the shore of the Hudson River. He resumed his trade with the Indigenous peoples and then became the main partner of the Desauniers sisters.