Louis Joliet sailed his expeditions on behalf of France and the French colonists in North America. He made expeditions along the Mississippi River, the Hudson Bay and the Labrador Coast.
Joliet's travels along the Mississippi River were with the missionary Jacques Marquette in 1673. This was a privately sponsored trip that took him as far south as St. Louis. Although the goal was to find a waterway to Asia, the pair discovered, with the aid of Native Americans in the area, that the river led to the Gulf of Mexico and Spanish territory. In 1679, Joliet surveyed the English and Native American trading business around the Hudson Bay. His travels to this area led to official maps of the region.