France's push and pull factors have included political and religious issues as well as war-related influences. Natural disasters have also influenced migration.
Push factors can be defined as the issues that influence migration from one location to another, while pull factors are the issues that attract people to the new location. There have been French migrations to the United States since the 1500s.
Some of the first push factors were related to religious persecution. The discord between the Roman Catholic majority and the Protestant minority, known as the Huguenots, influenced members of the minority group to move to the Americas. Other push factors included the 1800s potato blight and multiple famines in France that occurred in the 1650s, 1680s, late 1690s and the early 1700s. The French Indian War, which spanned across part of the period in which France was also fighting disease and poverty, contributed to additional migrations to America. Forced migration, such as the Company of the West slave trade, was also a push factor, as was the French Revolution.
Pull factors were related to the development of French settlements throughout the 1600s, which was a period of French exploration and expansion in the New World. King Louis XIV's emigration plan for women, which included free passage to the Canadian colonies in the late 1600s, was also influential.