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    Source: The Library of Congress Country Studies


    Figure 2. Administrative Organization and Territorial Changes, 1895-1947

    The French, in their early forays into the interior of Indochina, had stuck mainly to the rivers, looking for access routes to China. An April 1867 expedition led by Ernest Doudart de Lagrée and Francis Garnier visited the ruins of Vientiane. In 1869 an expedition led by Rheinart and Mourin d'Arfeuille traveled up the Mekong without penetrating the mountains. Although another explorer, Jules Harmand, a French army physician, reached Attapu on the Xé Kong, these forays provided the French with only a superficial knowledge of the peoples of the interior. What these early French explorers and scientists did find, however, were the Siamese and the Vietnamese already contesting for suzerainty over the territory between the mountains and the Mekong.

    Data as of July 1994

    NOTE: The information regarding Laos on this page is re-published from The Library of Congress Country Studies. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Laos DEVELOPMENTS IN THE NINETEENTH CENTURY information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Laos DEVELOPMENTS IN THE NINETEENTH CENTURY should be addressed to the Library of Congress.

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