Jacques Marquette was a Jesuit missionary who explored the Great Lakes and the Mississippi Valley with Louis Jolliet. Marquette arrived in Quebec in 1666 and studied Indian languages for two years before journeying to work with other missionaries on the shores of Lake Superior. He founded Saint Ignace mission on the north shore of the Mackinac Straits. In 1672 Jolliet arrived with orders to seek a great river to the west, which the Illinois Indians had described. Marquette, Jolliet, and five others set out in May 1673 by way of Green Bay and the Fox and Wisconsin Rivers. They reached the Mississippi and went downstream to the Arkansas River before returning, convinced that the Mississippi flowed into the Gulf of Mexico.