René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle, or Robert de La Salle (21 November 1643 – 19 March 1687), was a French explorer during the 17th century.

After building Fort Conti at the mouth of the Niagara River on Lake Ontario, La Salle built the barque Le Griffon near Cayuga Creek, launching the ship on 7 August 1679. His intention was to sail Le Griffon north to find the Northwest Passage to China and Japan. After stopping to load a cargo of furs at Green Bay, Le Griffon was never seen again.