Fur Trading

  1. 1492
    Italian explorer Christopher Columbus discovers new world
  2. 1497
    English explorer John Cabot sails to North America and brings back accounts of incredibly abundant fisheries.
  3. 1500
    European fishermen begin to make regular voyages to the fishing water of the Grand Banks and subsequently trade for furs with the Indians they meet on the coast.
  4. 1534
    French explorer Jacques Cartier and his men trade with Micmac Indians on the coast of New Brunswick, the first documented trading between Europeans and the inhabitants of the New World
  5. 1598
    French explorer Samuel de Champlain makes first voyage to the New World
  6. 1608
    New France is founded by Champlain, who recognizes the importance of the fur trade to his colony
  7. 1610
    English navigator Henry Hudson discovers Hudson Bay and is convinced it is the NW passage to China. His crew mutinies and leaves him to die there while they return to England
  8. 1618
    Brule travels all the way to the eastern edge of Lake Superior in search of the NW passage
  9. 1630
    The Iroquis tribes acquire guns from the Dutch traders and begin a 10 year assault on their French and Huron enemies, who control much of the fur trade
  10. 1634
    French explorer Jean Nicolet travels through the Great Lakes to Green Bay and claims the entire region for France
  11. 1659
    French traders Pierre Esprit Radisson and Medard Seigneur Chouart des Grosseilliers make an unlicensed fur trading excursion into the interior where they learn from indians of the abundant furs around Hudson Bay
  12. 1670
    The Hudson's Bay Company is chartered following Grosseilliers's successful trading voyage to the bay on the English ship the Nonsuch
  13. 1673
    French explorers Jacques Marquette and Louis Joliet explore the Mississippi River to Arkansas and return to report of abundant furs available along that corridor
  14. 1682
    Rene Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle, and Louis Hennepin travel the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico. They claim entire watershed for France and name it Louisiana after King Louis XIV
  15. 1701
    The Great Peace is signed by the English, French, and various tribes of the Great Lakes, including 39 chiefs. The treaty briefly ends decades of warfare between the indians and colonists
  16. 1702-1713
    Queen Anne's War is fought between England and Spain and between England and France for colonial territory
  17. 1744-1748
    France and Spain together fight England for land and power in North America
  18. 1754
    The French and Indian war begins. the fur trade is disrupted. Most licensed traders and their voaygeurs are called east to fight the British.
  19. 1760
    New France is conquered by the British. Furs now are shipped to London instead of Paris, and most trade goods are supplied through London
  20. 1763
    Treat of Paris formally ends the French and Indian war. France gives British all of its land in North America east of Mississippi except for New Orleans. The French land west of the Mississippi, called Louisiana, is given to Spain
  21. Spring 1763
    Pontiac's War begins when Ottawa war chief Pontiac, united with warriors from many Indian nations, attacks Fort Detroit.
  22. 1765
    Alexander Henry receives exclusive rights to trade on Lake Superior
  23. 1767
    British traders are allowed to establish wintering posts among the Indians. Construction of permanent structures at Grand Portage begins.
  24. 1774
    Traders begin to spread farther north and west of Grand Portage. small partnerships are formed to battle the cut-throat competition between traders.
  25. 1776
    The American Revolution causes some traders to avoid the areas south of the Great Lakes and encourages them to go farther north and west into what is today Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta
  26. 1782
    A smallpox epidemic kills thousands throughout the NW
  27. 1784
    The NW Company is formed. 16 company shares are held by traders and merchants such as McTavish, Peter Pond, Alex Henry, and 3 English brothers named Frobisher. First meeting is at Grand Portage which becomes meeting point for next 20 years
  28. 1789
    Alexander Mackenzie searches for the NW Passage but instead reaches the Arctic Ocean
  29. 1793
    Alexander Mackenzie successfully crosses the continent to the Pacific, just over 300 years after Columbus first sailed west. Mackenzies route is difficult and rarely used
  30. 1798
    The rival XY Company is formed to compete with the NW Company
  31. 1800
    Alexander Mackenzie joins XY Company
  32. 1802
    XY Company clerk George Nelson is sent into Northern Wisconsin to build a wintering post and keeps a journal
  33. 1803
    The U.S. purchases Louisiana territory from French. Lewis and Clark expedition heads west in search of a passage to Pacific
  34. 1804
    McTavish, leader of NW Company dies, prompting the consolidation of the NW Company and the XY Company
  35. 1804
    NW Company wintering partner John Sayer builds a trading post on Snake River in east central MN and keeps a journal
  36. 1808
    The American Fur Company is formed by J.J. Astor
  37. 1812
    War of 1812 disrupts trade across entire continent. At war's end, the NW Company withdraws from American soil and operates only in Canada
  38. 1821
    NW Company and Hudson's Bay Company merge under the name Hudson's Bay Company
  39. 1840's
    Silk hats replace beaver felt hats that have been in style for 300 years. Beaver hats are now out of fashion in Europe, signaling the end of the fur trade boom
  40. 1932
    Joe Neubauer finds a gunflint in a cornfield in east central MN. The site is later discovered to be the NW Company wintering post built by John Sayer and his voyageurs in 1804
  41. 1960s
    MN historical society begins excavating the site of NW Company Fur Post on the Snake River in east central MN
Card Set
Fur Trading
fur trading