1637-1675. French Roman Catholic missionary and explorer. Born in Laon, France, he entered the Jesuit Order in 1654 and after twelve years of study and teaching went to Canada, where he was assigned to mission outpost work. He served among the Ottawa and Huron Indian tribes in the Lake Superior and Lake Michigan area. In 1673 he and Louis Joliet explored toward the west, discovering the Mississippi River. Marquette wanted to found a mission among the Illinois Indians, and died after spending some time preaching among them. He is known today mostly for his explorations, yet his missionary labors have not been forgotten.