The Fur Trade

 Women in the Fur Trade 
By Mark O.
Very shortly after Europeans began sailing to Canada to fish,  they found that Canada had many fur-bearing animals. So when the fur traders started exploring and began trading with Aboriginal peoples for fresh foods and fur from the animals they hunted, so they could sell it.
For the fur traders to survive and keep selling fur in different places, say thanks to the women that worked in the fur trade. The Aboriginal woman played an very important role in the fur trade. Probably without their skills and hard work the fur trade could of never happened the women’s did a lot of work.
The Aboriginal women’s jobs were often going on fur-trading trips with their husbands and most of them acted as  guides. Worked with the men to paddle the canoes to go to  the place they needed to sell. Also they carried heavy loads  across portages. Once they  stopped, the women would set up for camp and prepared meals.
The women had many different skills that were really important to the fur trade. They knew how to trap smaller animals for meat and fur. They had skills to clean and prepare pelts and hides and they also knew how to make medicines out of plants. 
The women made or helped make many different items of value. They made many different kind of blankets and clothing, including moccasins. They helped make snowshoes and the women did the webbing for them so it could 
make traveling way easier in the snow for the fur traders. The fur traders had learned many different skills from their wives. They had learned languages and customs of their wives’ people; without the women the men probably could not have survived.

Name of the source…/egp.gen.043
Name  of article : Encyclopedia of the great plains
Author: David J. Wisharf
Date Published : 2011
Name of article : Fur traders
Name of source
Name of article :woman of the Fur trade 1774-1821
Author : A. Gottfred 
Date Published : 1994-2002, last updated 21/02/2002

Ss9 website project #2
Nikki Nicin
Block A

Indigenous people during the Fur trade

By Nikki

The relationships and roles with the Indigenous people

Mainly in the Fur trade Aboriginal people worked to trade the fur of the animals they hunted for a variety of things. Aboriginals traded with fishers and explorers for fresh food, although they mainly became partners with the Europeans because both French and English were interested in the fur that the aboriginals had.

Many Aboriginals were very kind to the Europeans, and taught them how to survive in their environment, and also showed them ways to of transportation. Even though they showed their affection for the Europeans, the Aboriginals were smart enough to play the English and the French, by trading with both of them.

Many of the Métis men worked for the North West company either or the Hudson Bay company. While many of the women had economic skills that did help the French adapt to the wild kind of life around. The friendship between the European traders and the Native peoples was standardly equal.

Things that the Aboriginals needed, wanted and did connecting with the Europeans

The natives were in need of many tools/goods that the Europeans had as well, such as pots, metal hatchets, metal tools in general, glass beads and cloth goods.  They also received in exchange, blankets, firearms and alcohol. The only way Aboriginals were able to get the items they desired, they had to trade their animal fur. They got this fur by trapping animals, ex: during the summer time they would hunt down, and skin buffalo.  Both Europeans and Natives wanted what the other had, so they basically just swapped items on certain conditions. Their relationship was so sturdy that the Aboriginals almost always thought of the Europeans first when it came to trading fur for tools.

How the Aboriginals helped Europeans and helped handle the trading systems

Aboriginals were very important because they helped lead the way to explore North America, nobody knew their way around because there were no maps at the time, and the natives did know the wilderness the best. They actually had a warm heart as they provided them with food, and taught them how to do many things such as cook, make canoes to help with transportation, and teach them how to survive in the cold winter weather. When it came to “business” they did not want their trading to interfere with their indigenous culture.

Tragedy for the Indigenous people involved during the fur trade

It was not always the brightest time with the Aboriginals. They were in deep trouble for even being involved in the fur trade. There was a lot of conflict that it wars were happening between the Aboriginals. The Iroquois had become most powerful from all the First Nations in the east. While war was happening voyageurs were moving across the continent with an unpleasant surprise, they had spread European diseases just like smallpox. It was so deadly that about 75% of the Aboriginal population had died. Since then the aboriginal culture was never the same.

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