Frenchman Jacques Cartier was the first European who started the exploration of the northern part of what is now North America. A new land mass discovered in 1534 Cartier called Kannata, from native Huron word that meant settlement. The name was later changed to Canada. The first Europeans were French pioneers that mostly traded furs with original inhabitants. France made the region a royal colony and became the dominant power following the founding of a trading posts on the sites of Québec and Montréal. In 1759, the British captured Québec, ending the French rule.