Excavation of La Salle's fort to resume

Tuesday, September 7th 1999, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

(Undated-AP) -- A fort that became Texas' first French
settlement more than 300 years ago is the target of archaeologists
who hope to learn more about explorer La Salle.

Excavation of one of the explorer's ships -- the La Belle -- has
already yielded hundreds of thousands of relics, including a
793-pound bronze cannon.

But archaeologists say excavation of Fort Saint Louis has much
more potential. That dig is scheduled for January.

The fort was discovered in Victoria County, near the shipwreck
sites offshore.

La Salle set sail from France in 1684 with four ships and a crew
of 400 to settle the Mississippi River basin. He missed the river
and wandered instead into Matagorda Bay. There, he and other
survivors of their shipwreck dragged their gear ashore and built
the fort about 20 miles inland.