The early history of Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC) provides a unique example of ambitious imperial endeavour in a difficult and remote area. Historians examining the role of British enterprise in North America have generally turned to the activities of the Thirteen Colonies. The study of the Hudson’s Bay region, and its eventual domination by the British, sheds an interesting light on the links between private enterprise, state, and the mobility of resources. To this day it remains the oldest surviving trading company of its type. By sixteenth century standards, it bears much resemblance to many of the early English trading companies based in London. Its small size when compared to the East India Company and Royal Africa Company, is more representative of trading companies during this period. Historians have often looked to these companies for they left extensive records behind, and HBC is no different. That the HBC was able to survive against competition in its early years is a feat largely down to the effectiveness of its commercial organisation, and the weakening resolve of New France. This case study highlights the importance of its financial infrastructure in determining its eventual success. Joseph Robson famously remarked that in its initial eighty years, the company had been ‘asleep by a frozen sea.’ Upon examining their activities, the extent of the competition that they faced, and their imperial ambitions, this does not seem to be the case at all.

This map shows the results from Hudson’s voyage, it also includes the phantom islands of friesland and buss island in the Atlantic. – Hessel Gerritsz, ‘Tabula Nautica’, (1612)

manitoba-maps-history-450616-o

The bay itself was explored by Henry Hudson, who in August 1610 surveyed the area and “a great and whurling sea”[1] The English had an establish ideology of trade and settlement in north America by the middle of the sixteenth century, though there was little prospect of settlement in Hudson’s Bay due to its remote nature and the lack of potential to trade commodities.[2] The French colonists were the first to be drawn into contact and trade with the Native Americans in the northerly region through the fur trade. The fur trade proved essential to sustaining some of the early colonies. The colonists established the seasonal business of sending out teams of men, called voyageurs, who would travel hundreds of miles in American style birch bark canoes to trade furs. Jean-Baptiste Colbert sought to control this practice tightly however, and various regulations and restrictions were put in place that slowed the development of the fur trade. His case was based on the idea that proper governance and administration before expansion could take place.[3] Pritchard has argued that on its own, the fur trade became increasingly rationalized, better organised, and more efficient. “Had market forces alone prevailed all might have been well, but Colbert did not leave the trade alone.”[4]

William Armstrong, ‘Indians Completing a Portage,’ (1873)

Armstrong -Indians completing a portage

Pierre-Esprit Radisson and Sieur des Groseilliers, were enterprising traders from New France who understood there to be an ample supply of furs and trade further to the North by a frozen sea. If trade was possible, sea going vessels from the colonies would be able to sail right into the bay. They formed a partnership and set off on a series of voyages to investigate Hudson’s Bay, and brought back a significant number of skins in 1660. They set off without official backing however and they managed to break many of the regulations on their return to New France. They were fined, furs confiscated, imprisoned and left with a strong sense of injustice. They tried to co-opt support from Bostonian merchants, but their voyage failed. Instead, they tried their luck on the other side of the Atlantic and eventually found their way to the court of King Charles II in Oxford 1666.[5] They convinced Prince Rupert and Charles to support an expedition to Hudson’s Bay to see if their trade ambitions were feasible. Of two ships that were sent, one returned with significant number of furs which were bought mostly by the prominent London furrier Thomas Glover.[6]  This success led to the creation of the Hudson’s Bay Company, and eighteen investors were granted a royal charter to trade furs from Husdon’s Bay in 1670. It granted a monopoly over the region that drains into Hudson’s Bay.[7] Although they could not have known the true extent, it comprises an area of roughly 1.5 million square miles. HBC was backed by an initial investment of £10,500 by eighteen investors. This was a sizeable initial capital compared to other chartered companies of the period, but was much smaller than the initial size of the Royal African Company (ten times larger) or East India Company (twenty five times larger).[8] The initial shareholders were comprised almost entirely of men experienced in colonial administrators or influential in government.[9] The majority kept their stake in the HBC in its first ten years of activity.[10]

In its early history, there remained much possibility for the company to engage in other pursuits. Their links with the Royal Society helped to generate interests in the region’s climate, and the possibility of a north westerly passage. This possibility to explore a north western passage was stipulated in the original voyage from England.[11] In 1682, there was an interest in the potential for mining, as they sent mining equipment over from Cornwall to see if it was feasible.[12] They were also awarded a charter for the phantom island of Busse in 1675, which granted them rights to all commerce, including whales and fisheries in perpetuity, and including their successors.[13] The primary concern in their first decade revolved around setting up a regular, profitable system of trade.

The HBC established a series of factories at the mouth of major rivers. Inside was a chief factor, who would wait for Indians to arrive at the fort, and then purchase furs. They were purchased with various metal tools, weapons, and high quality English wool. Between the initial voyage in 1668 and 1682 they set up four posts; Rupert House (1668), Moose factory (1673), Fort Albany (1674), Fort Severn (1680). These initial settlements were successful in trading with the Indians though they were beset by a number of difficulties in supply and social control. The first governors dispatch to survive is a long report written by John Nixon in 1682 summing up three years of company activity on the bay. He describes the disorder and confusion that marked these early settlements, as well as some prudent advise for future management. He complains that the men too highly paid, often have private trade, and defy him when they are ‘in drinke.’ But he cannot send them home for want of men in their places. Instead, he must “humor them lyke children, which makes them still the more insolent.” In his advice, he recommends that they should send over “5 lykly country lads of 17 or 18 years of age” in a seven year service, and an old soldier to keep order and train the men. Scotland, he claimed, would be best to furnish them with hardy men on cheap wages.[14] Life in these fort was remote and difficult, particularly over the long and cold winters in the bay. Writing in 1752, Joseph Robson remarked that their sphere of action was “confined within the very narrow limits of carrying large logs of wood, walking in snow-shoes, setting traps, hunting and fowling.”[15] Anthony Beale, wrote a journal in 1705 that seems to convey the monotony of life at a fort and their transactions with the Indians. The summer months were clearly the most active, for this is when most of the Indians and the annual company ships would arrive.[16] In these early years, they faced remarkably little competition, other than their own servants conducting private trade.

            Success of the trade was dependent upon the ability of the traders to maintain good relations with the Natives. In this they were successful as there were no major wars or disputes with Indians that marked many of the other American colonies. HBC merely provided the factories which the Indians could travel to and trade. The company frequently reminded their governors to be kind to the Indians. In Nixon’s 1682 report, he concocted a plan to contact a group never contacted by Europeans, who were at war with HBC trading partners.[17] The Committee was glad to hear of this prospect, but they had spoke to men who returned to England, and advised him to be less cruel to the Natives and their servants. They added that “Experience teaches that mild and Gentle Usage doth more obtaine upon the most Savage Natures then to much Severity.”[18]

Samuel Hearne, ‘A North-West View of Prince of Wales’s For in Hudson’s Bay, North America,’ (1777) from Samuel Hearne, A Journey From Prince of Wales’s Fort in Hudson’s Bay to the Northern Ocean, (Toronto: The Champlain Society, 1911)

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Although the HBC laid claim to the entirety of the Bay through their charter, they were confined mostly to the lower portion of Hudson’s Bay known as James’ Bay. The region to the west was still unsettled, and had a number of rivers suitable for the construction of forts. HBC had been interested in developing Port Nelson. It was a spot discovered 1612, and frequented occasionally by company servants as early as 1670.[19] They wrote to their governor Nixon explaining the concern for interloping designs on foot, and that it would be necessary to occupy Fort Nelson.[20] This was followed by further instructions in 1681 but not carried out.[21] In 1682 rumours were circulating about potential interlopers, and they sent to Nixon a order to be displayed in public: anyone who should assist any interloper in any way would be immediately sent home without pay.[22] Their monopoly was realistically only as effective as the Company’s ability to enforce it. In 1682 they fitted out a ship and a new governor, John Bridgar to oversee the construction of a fort at the Nelson. His instructions were to make what discoveries he could, and establish commerce with the local Indians in order answer for the great expense of creating the settlement. [23] Their rumours of interloping designs proved to be true, for in 1682 French, New England and English trades started to contest one another by attempting settlements that summer. The confused contest between the parties started around this river in 1682 provides a useful example of the nature of contact and control around forts, but also the importance of information in shaping company actions.

This version is from a later edition of Robson’s narrative and includes some of the locations of forts mentioned. Joseph Robson, ‘A Draught of Nelson and Haye’s Rivers’ (1752). from E.E. Rich, The History of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1670-1870, Volume I: 1670-1763, (London: The Hudson’s Bay Record Society, 1958) p.321,

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In the French court, news of the Company’s activities had been circulating. Colbert was interested in exploration of the North but had been restrained by the needs of diplomacy, the difficulty in regulating the Canadian fur trade and his insistence on agricultural production.[24] In 1681 Charles Aubert de La Chesnaye, a prestigious merchant of New France, came together with Radisson and Groseilliers to form their own company. They were able to receive royal backing and secure a charter from France. Radisson had effectively turned his back on the HBC by this point. Although HBC accounts are scathing, Radisson’s letters explains that he did not feel respected. He also saw himself as an honourable servant only to those who were willing to pay for his abilities.[25] The French expedition arrived at the Nelson in August and they set about constructing a fort on the Hayes. They arrived only days after a similar voyage launched from Boston by New England traders and under command of Benjamin Gillam. The New Englanders had set up a fort on the banks of the Nelson, only a few miles away. Understanding them to be interlopers, Radisson claimed authority from the French King and bluffed to Gillam that he had a much larger force. [26] Radisson offered to let them continue to trade under their protection within the confines of his fort over the winter. Some days later, the HBC ship the Rupert arrived with its new governor Bridgar and supplies for their new settlement. Radisson claimed to Bridgar that he and Groseilliers had already built a fort, that they had two ships and that a third was on its way. Bridgar was unaware of the New Englanders’ presence.[27] It was October by this point, and too late in the year for Bridgar to take the ship elsewhere. He attempted to take the ship into the Nelson but it was driven off shore by ice and lost at sea along with the pilot and nine crew. Bridgar was expecting another HBC ship on the way called the Albemarle, though the voyage failed and they had to winter at Rupert River. Bridgar and his crew were without a ship, defence, or supplies so were entirely reliant upon Radisson over the winter.[28] Radisson was concerned that both the New Englanders and HBC should unite, so did not tell either about their presence. After a month of housing the New Englanders in the French fort, Radisson informed them that they were prisoners. Radisson then seized the New Englander’s vessel and burnt their settlement. One of Gillam’s men escaped and informed bridgar of what happened, but they were still reliant on supplies from Radisson in their crude huts and many suffering from illness.[29] While they were weak, Radisson took the opportunity to capture them as well. All the prisoners were loaded up into the seized vessel, along with their furs and sent to Quebec the following summer. Years later, Bridgar called Radisson “a traitor and a thief, and vowed he would kill him wherever he could find him.”[30] In 1683, another HBC ship arrived in port Nelson to find a small party of seven Frenchmen in possession of a fort.[31] They constructed a fort along the Hayes instead, and eventually the HBC learnt what happened the previous summer. Another major dispute occurred in 1684, when Pierre de la Martinière captured a HBC ship, and took crew back to Quebec as prisoners.[32] This concerned the company deeply, and a series of arduous diplomatic exchanges took place within these years as both the French and English sought to justify their actions and lay claim to the region.

HBC did not wish to commit their resources to physically oust the French, their servants were not military men, and such an endeavour would have meant a loss in profits down to a lack of trade. In February 1685 the Company petitioned directly to the new King James II for assistance. In it, they gave an account of French aggression and how their forts and vessels had been seized much to their detriment. Interestingly, they included the treatment of the New Englanders as evidence for French aggression against the King’s servants. The petitioners complain that “the for 4 yeares last past those of Canada have yearly privily frequented the Territories of this Compa. within the Lymitts of his Majestyes Charter, lurking aboute their Factories…where they have intercepted the Trade of the said Compa. to the vallew at least of 10 thousand beavor skins yearely which is equivolent to £20000 sterling.” They then give a total loss between 1682-1685 amounting to sixty thousand pounds.[33] The King did not send any assistance to the region while he faced rebellions to his rule from the Duke of Monmouth and Earl of Argyll.

The HBC had also petitioned directly to the French King in 1684. They their claim to the region on long standing commercial activity, stretching back to John Cabot in 1497. After summarising their injustices, they gave a total cost of their actions to be over one hundred thousand pounds sterling.[34] This petition however, showed the HBC’s weakness in enforcing their monopoly and strengthened France’s resolve. The French replied and claimed the authority of land ownership from the Treaty of Breda (1667) and claimed that Radisson’s settlement was established before any English presence.[35] Radisson’s account denied that the New England men under Gillam arrived before they did.[36] In May 1685, Loius XIV granted the Compagnie du Nord a much more comprehensive charter which included the district around Nelson.[37] Louis gambled that there would not be any serious repercussions while he supported James II’s claim to the throne. However, with the lack of HBC’s ability to enforce their monopoly, a consensus of the possibility of power sharing emerged between the two crowns. Both the French and English had traded furs profitably around the Nelson since 1682, despite the skirmishes. Negotiations were underway in the winter of 1686, and the crowns came to the conclusion that the two nations could hold Port nelson independently. The governor of new France, Denonville, was sent instructions that French interests in the Bay must be sustained without attacking the English posts. By the time the news reached the continent however it was too late, for a military expedition under the command of Chevalier de Troyes had been sent that summer to capture the weaker HBC forts around James’ Bay.[38]

A map is essential to explain the areas where HBC was active, particularly during the years of intense competition with the French. – Thos. Kitchin, ‘Map of the European Settlements in North America’, from Abbe Raynal A Philosphical and Political History of the Settlements and Trade of the Europeans in the East and West Indies, (Dublin: 1779)

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The French military expedition the Hudson’s Bay in 1686, was the most successful raid made by the French on English posts on Hudson’s Bay. Its success showed to both the French and the English that with enough resources and a committed party of men, these forts could fall easily. The journal of its commander provides an ample narrative of this expedition, and was circulated in New France. Chevalier de Troyes’ left Montreal in Spring 1686, with a hundred men and several canoes through the Canadian interior.[39] This was a long and arduous journey of 82 days, before they were expected to capture a series of objectives. They took Moose Factory by surprise, and in only a few hours captured the fort and fifteen prisoners. They later captured Fort Charles (formerly Rupert house) and the company ship the Craven along with its cargo again, by the tactic of attacking early at dawn while the men were sleeping. They then moved onto Fort Albany, though couldn’t find its location until they heard English gunners amusing themselves by firing salutes from the company walls. Fort Albany was a more difficult target that required them to move heavy guns from other forts to its location. Fortunately, they discovered a lookout post where they could fix the guns overlooking Fort Albany, that in the typical policy of HBC defence was unmanned. Fort Albany was besieged and the HBC men were reportedly hiding in the cellar, when they surrendered. The terms were of surrender were quite favourable; HBC servants would give up the fort, and sent to an island with their possessions where they could be picked up by an English or French ship. [40] The French renamed all the forts and spent the following years attempting to secure their hold on the fur trade from James’ Bay.[41] From 1686, HBC had control only over York Factory on Hayes river.

This example also illustrates how and why the French were dominant in military engagements. Their forces were made up of voyageurs and fur traders used to long expeditions and engagements in Canadian terrain. The HBC men were private servants sent for five or seven years to carry out a peaceful living, and had little motivation to fight.  This was the explanation offered by Henry Sergeant, the governor of the James Bay in 1686.[42] HBC tried to blame their governor for the loss of the posts; that he was discouraging, allowed French prisoners to inspect the forts, disarmed his men and effectively volunteered their surrender.[43] His defence was convincing enough that eventually charges were not brought against him.[44]

Over the decade following the French expedition, French and English traders competed over all the forts on Hudson’s Bay. Attempts were generally confined to the summer, and they could change hands seemingly at random. The forts themselves were held only by a handful of labourers and easy to overpower if the attacking side was committed enough. The major objective was to control the trade associated with the river adjacent to it and if possible seize furs. It was an economically based competition. Interestingly, the Indians seemed to stay out of these conflicts on the Hudson Bay, and traded with whoever occupied the fort. This is remarkably different to the area of the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence river valley, where conflict between the English, Dutch and French over the fur trade drew most of the Indian groups into the fold.[45] Numerous wars in the colonies in the late sixteenth century served as a pretence for continued aggression in control of the fur trade. Although the French continually took their more remote posts, HBC enjoyed a few successes in the 1690s. This included the capture of Fort Albany in 1693 by James Knight. The Committee was so impressed with James Knight’s efforts that they rewarded him with £500 and pleaded him to stay there longer.[46] The royal navy did not commit resources to Hudson’s Bay and preferred to focus on the much more profitable sugar colonies. They assisted only once, in the capture of York factory which in 1685, was the only French fort left. This was subsequently retaken by d’Iberville in 1697, and until 1713 their forts were continually attacked and taken by the French.

In the midst of this competition, the question arises as to how the HBC was able to sustain itself. The answer lies in its corporate structure and financing. Having a factory meant that they could trade furs effectively all year round, unlike the early French voyageurs who could only travel out and trade in the summer months. When the ships would come into HBC ports in the summer, it represented essentially its full business cycle, in furs, supplies, money and correspondence. that this was maintained even during intense competition gives the HBC a level of consistent security for its investors, who would understand that a large proportion of their return would come back to England yearly.

The HBC has attracted attention from business historians, for its accounts represent a good example of early modern finance in action. Frits Pannekoek has described their activities to be one of a “small, reasonably successful business.” However, such a view neglects the importance of ambition and investment in their activities. The figures given by the petitions for cost of creating their forts, in the ranges of a hundred thousand to two hundred thousand are likely over estimates. However, they do indicate that its investors were able to front large amounts of capital should the company need it. The consistent large investments show that it must have been profitable to do so, and they could afford to run of deficits if needs be. The directors and shareholders were notable businessmen and aristocrats operating right at the heart of London. This included Robert Vyner the father of Exchequer bills, Prince Rupert, Robert Boyle and others.[47] Many had interests in similar trading companies such as the East India Company and Royal Africa Company, and could call upon credit from a variety of different sources.

Historians have long noted the importance of financial institutions in achieving imperial aims. Brewer has demonstrated that England had unique features that distinguished itself from other imperial powers, namely that England had expanded its fiscal base by the beginning of the eighteenth century.[48] This often gets drawn into a broader debate about the fiscal-military state, and how Britain was able to use its finance to support military endeavours in the eighteenth century. However, investment within HBC rarely took the line of military expenditure, and it appears that they would shy away from conflict given the choice. This is indicated in their willingness to come to a compromise with the French in 1686, and also how they did not react with any instant fervour when almost their entire base of operation in James’ Bay was taken away later that year. HBC seems to represent business interests of the City of London. In this respect it can be considered as a good example of ‘gentlemanly capitalism’.[49] Investment was internally driven and used predominantly to sustain their profitable trade. Through this corporate structure the HBC were able essentially, to outcompete their French rivals. The French companies were based upon private investors, were in competition with one another, and severely restricted by official regulations in Canada. HBC by contrast, was centralised and supported well. The competition had the effect to encourage investment and financial stimulus to the benefit of the company. The graph given below shows the level of transfer activity with company stocks. The periods of highest financial activity occur when the company was facing its greatest competition with the French. The sharp rise after 1690 can be explained in part because the Committee decided to triple the nominal value of their shareholdings.

Source – Carlos, Ann M. and Jill L. Van Stone, ‘Stock Transfer Patterns in the Hudson’s Bay Company: A Study of the English Capital Market in Operation, 1670-1730,’ Business History, Vol. 38,  (1996) p.22

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This combination of competition and sustained investment resulted in a slow growth over its initial years. Carlos and Van Stone have advocated the importance of stock brokers in generating stimulus and helping to provide this growth for the HBC, but also the larger economy. Most of these transactions were small, sold in £100 blocks and provided the opportunity to educate the public on investment prior to large government borrowing in the eighteenth century.[50] The number of transactions, are more indicative of company financial activity than the value of its stock. HBC’s initial stock capital of £10,500 was sustained for the first twenty years of its existence, despite repeated large investments.[51] In 1690 it was decided that the nominal value of the stock should be tripled £31,500, and dividends paid on these terms.[52] In this circumstance it would be expected that the price per share should decline. However, the market held to the trebled value of the stock, so this move represented the real capitalisation of the company as it increased its assets and size.[53] That the market held to this value, was probably also due to the small number of stock holders and investors. The 18 initial investors had only grown to 29 by 1690.[54] The stock was tripled again in 1720 to £103,950.[55] The patterns of stock ownership are useful to understand as they represent the level of confidence for the company, but also shows how the company had a solid financial backing.

The French companies operating in Hudson’s Bay did not have the same efficiency of organisation or financial backing. The Compagnie du Nord begun with a policy of military aggression, and profited from such expeditions. Unlike the HBC the Compagnie du Nord had exhausted their finances by the mid 1690s, and the organisation was weak damaged by internal dispute. They were also regulated heavily by the policies of New France, found it difficult to operate in such a remote area and could not supply regular profits to its investors. This explains their weakening resolve through the 1690s, and how the HBC were able to survive and eventually retake the majority of their forts.[56] The weakened prospects for the French in the Hudson’s Bay meant that the French were willing to concede in negotiations at the conclusion of King Williams War. The Treaty of Ryswick (1697) restored the territorial conquests seized by d’Iberville in James’ Bay to English hands.[57] Three ports were still disputed however,

One last major attempt was made by the French to seize Fort Albany in 1709. It was undertaken not by fur traders, but by French colonial volunteers as part of Queen Anne’s war (1702-1713). This was the largest battle for the HBC in the period, but the governor was alerted of the French threat by Cree traders and able to prepare a proper defence.[58] It is the only example of the HBC successfully defending one of their forts against a large and determined force. When Queen Anne’s war was concluded in the Treaty of Utrecht (1713), the HBC was able to successfully lobby the government to restore full control over Rupert’s Land. The French traders had to give up all of their forts to the HBC. While the Treaty of Ryswick resulted in disappointment in the company’s eyes, the Treaty of Utrecht marked a success in an otherwise long struggle to obtain government support of their claims.[59] After this treaty was signed, military competition of Hudson Bay forts was no longer. It took the arena of economic competition, which the HBC was much more suited to deal with. The conclusion of the Treaty of Utrecht shows that even if the company established itself successfully, they still desired and needed the support. Once it was obtained and they were able to actually enforce their monopoly, HBC grew extensively over the eighteenth century. Once they pressed further inland with their forts in 1774, they became inextricably linked to development of Canada.

The first chapter of its history between 1670-1713 provides a useful example of early British enterprise on a remote frontier in north America. The wide scope of the company’s prospects in its initial years, shows that both the crown and merchant community in London were willing to back such ambitious and risky ventures. It was not entirely based upon imperial ideals and the principle consideration was always profit driven. In this sense it represented the business interests of the city of London, propagated through various institutional links, and is in many ways a reflection of the ‘gentlemanly capitalism’ thesis offered by Cain and Hopkins. The extensive competition between the years 1682-1713 and resulting diplomacy, sheds an interesting light on the relationship between private enterprise and the state. The French approach was based predominantly upon military dominance and has much in common with its efforts further south along the St. Lawrence river valley. Much like the French, HBC could not rely on state or royal support in such a remote area. HBC however could fall back on its wealthy investors and institutional links in times of need, who could provide capital and stimulation wherever necessary to sustain their trade. Its effective corporate structure and consistent business turnover meant that they effectively outcompeted their rivals. By the time negotiations came for the negotiation of the Treaty of Utrecht, its prospects were healthy and they received favourable terms that officially put an end to French rivalry. Thenceforth they were free to expand without substantial competition through the eighteenth century, and for many years acted as the de facto government until the territory was claimed by Canada in 1870.

 

References


[1] Asher, G. M., Henry Hudson the Navigator, The Original Documents in which his career is recorded, collected, partly translated, and annotated, with an Introduction, (London: Hakluyt Society, 1860) p.97

[2] The classic example is Richard Hakluyt’s ‘Discourse on Western planting’ (1584)

[3] W.J. Eccles, The Canadian Frontier, 1534-1760, (Canada, 1969) p.104

[4] James Pritchard, In Search of Empire, The French in the Americas, (Cambridge: University Press, 2004) p.154

[5] They arrived in London during a plague epidemic, so had to travel to Oxford where the court were temporarily residing.

[6] E.E. Rich, The History of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1670-1870, Volume I: 1670-1763, (London: The Hudson’s Bay Record Society, 1958) pp.36-42

[7] E.E. Rich, Minutes of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1671-1674, (London: The Champlain Society, for the Hudson’s Bay Record Society, 1942), Appendix A, ‘The Royal Charter Incorporating the Hudson’s Bay Company, A.D. 1670’, pp.131-148

[8] Carlos, Ann M. and Jill L. Van Stone, ‘Stock Transfer Patterns in the Hudson’s Bay Company: A Study of the English Capital Market in Operation, 1670-1730,’ Business History, Vol. 38,  (1996) pp.17-18

[9] E.E. Rich, Minutes of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1671-1674, Appendix A, ‘The Royal Charter Incorporating the Hudson’s Bay Company, A.D. 1670’, pp.131-148

[10] E.E. Rich, Minutes of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1679-1684, First Part, 1679-82, (London: The Champlain Society, for the Hudson’s Bay Record Society, 1945), Appendix B ‘The Generall Stock of the Hudsons bay-Company to the severall Adventurers therein vizt, 1676’ and ‘The present Proprietors of the Stock [August, 1682] vizt.’ pp.307-308

[11] Barry Gough,‘Lords of the Northern Forest’,History Today, (Sep, 1991)  p.52

[12] E.E. Rich, Copy-Book of Letters Outward &c: Begins 29th May, 1680, ends 5 July, 1687, (London: The Hudson’s Bay Record Society, 1948) Reply to john Nixon letter. May the 15th 1682. pp.37-48

[13] minutes book 1671. Appendix B pp.151-153

[14] E.E. Rich, Minutes of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1679-1684, First Part, 1679-82, (London: The Champlain Society, for the Hudson’s Bay Record Society, 1945) Appendix A, ‘report to the Governor and Committee by John Nixon 1682’ pp.239-304

[15] Joseph Robson, An Account of Six Years’ Residence in Hudson Bay (London, 1752)

[16] Glyndwr Williams, Hudson’s Bay Miscellany 1670-1870, (Winnipeg: Hudson’s Bay Record Society, 1975) ‘A Continuation of the Transactions of Albany Fort Beginning September the 13th 1705’ pp.10-73

[17] E.E. Rich, Minutes of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1679-1684, First Part, 1679-82, pp.239-304

[18] E.E. Rich, Copy-Book of Letters Outward &c: Begins 29th May, 1680, ends 5 July, 1687, ‘May the 15th 1682.’ pp.37-48

[19] Grace Lee Nute, Caesars of the Wilderness: Médard Chouart, Sieur Des Groseilliers and Pierre Esprit Radisson, 1618-1710, (St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press, 1978) p.136

[20] E.E. Rich, Copy-Book of Letters Outward &c: Begins 29th May, 1680, ends 5 July, 1687, ‘Governor Nixon’s instructions 29th may 1680’ pp.2-16

[21] E.E. Rich, Copy-Book of Letters Outward &c: Begins 29th May, 1680, ends 5 July, 1687,  June 1681, p.35

[22] E.E. Rich, Copy-Book of Letters Outward &c: Begins 29th May, 1680, ends 5 July, 1687, ‘Aditionall Instructions to Governour Nixon, London May 22th 1682’ p.47

[23] E.E. Rich, Copy-Book of Letters Outward &c: Begins 29th May, 1680, ends 5 July, 1687, ‘Instructions for Mr. John Bridgar Governor of Port Nelson the 15th May 1682’  pp.35-36

[24] E.E. Rich, The History of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1670-1870, Volume I: 1670-1763, p.128

[25] Germaine Warkentin, Pierre-Esprit Radisson: The Collected Writings, Volume 1: The Voyages, (McGill-Queen’s Press, 2012) p.22

[26] E.E. Rich, The History of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1670-1870, Volume I: 1670-1763, pp.133-145

[27] Grace Lee Nute, Caesars of the Wilderness: Médard Chouart, Sieur Des Groseilliers and Pierre Esprit Radisson, 1618-1710, p.193

[28] E.E. Rich, The History of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1670-1870, Volume I: 1670-1763,  p.137

[29] Grace Lee Nute, Caesars of the Wilderness: Médard Chouart, Sieur Des Groseilliers and Pierre Esprit Radisson, 1618-1710, pp.194-195

[30] Joseph Burr Tyrell, Documents Relating to the Early History of Hudson Bay, Volume 18, (Canada: Champlain Society, 1931) p.78, also p.52

[31] E.E. Rich, The History of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1670-1870, Volume I: 1670-1763,  p.148

[32] Nellis M. Crouse, Lemoyne d’Iberville, Soldier of New France, (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 2001) p.19

[33] E.E. Rich, Copy-Book of Letters Outward &c: Begins 29th May, 1680, ends 5 July, 1687, Petition to the king dated 25th February 1685. pp. 166-171

[34] E.E. Rich, Copy-Book of Letters Outward &c: Begins 29th May, 1680, ends 5 July, 1687, pp.249-272 , for responses see: pp.272-293

[35] ibid

[36] Germaine Warkentin, Pierre-Esprit Radisson: The Collected Writings, Volume 1: The Voyages, p.75

[37] Nellis M. Crouse, Lemoyne d’Iberville, Soldier of New France, p.17

[38] Nellis M. Crouse, Lemoyne d’Iberville, Soldier of New France, p.19

[39] Ivanhoë Caron (ed.) Journal de l’expédition du chevalier de Troyes à la baied’Hudson, en 1686, (Beauceville, Canada: La Compagnie de “l’Éclaireur”, 1918)

[40] ibid

[41] Nellis M. Crouse, Lemoyne d’Iberville, Soldier of New France, p.40

[42] Rich, E.E., Copy-Book of Letters Outward &c: Begins 29th May, 1680, ends 5 July, 1687 Nov 4th 1687 pp.313-316

[43] E.E. Rich, Copy-Book of Letters Outward &c: Begins 29th May, 1680, ends 5 July, 1687, pp.317-319

[44] E.E. Rich, Copy-Book of Letters Outward &c: Begins 29th May, 1680, ends 5 July, 1687, pp.321-4

[45] John F. Richards, The Unending Frontier, (University of California Press, 2003) p.486

[46] E.E. Rich, Hudson’s Bay copy booke of letters: Commissions instructions outward, 1688-1696, (London: The Hudson’s Bay Record Society, 1957) p.241

[47] Gary Spraakman, Management Accounting at the Hudson’s Bay Company: From Quill Pen to Digitization, (Emerald Group Publishing, 2015) p.19

[48] John Brewer, The Sinews of Power: War, Money and the English State, 1688-1783, (Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1990)

[49] P. J. Cain and A. G. Hopkins, ‘Gentlemanly Capitalism and British Expansion Overseas II: New Imperialism, 1850-1945’, The Economic History Review, Vol. 40, No. 1 (Feb., 1987), pp. 1-26

[50] Ann M. Carlos, and Jill L. Van Stone, ‘Stock Transfer Patterns in the Hudson’s Bay Company: A Study of the English Capital Market in Operation, 1670-1730,’

[51] E.E. Rich, Minutes of the Hudson’s Bay Company 1679-1684, First Part, 1679-82, ‘The Generall Stock of the Hudsons bay-Company to the severall Adventurers therein vizt, 1676’ and ‘The present Proprietors of the Stock [August, 1682] vizt.’ pp.307-308

[52] E.E. Rich, Hudson’s Bay copy booke of letters: Commissions instructions outward, 1688-1696, (London: The Hudson’s Bay Record Society, 1957) Appendix B ‘The originall & Trebled Joint Stock of the Hudsons Bay Compa. as it was declared by the Committee of the said Company, the 3d of Septembr. 1690’ pp.314-315

[53] Ann M. Carlos and Jill L. Van Stone, ‘Stock Transfer Patterns in the Hudson’s Bay Company: A Study of the English Capital Market in Operation, 1670-1730,’ Business History, Vol. 38,  (1996) p.23

[54] ibid p.19

[55] ibid p.17

[56] Edward H. Borins, La Compagnie Du Nord, 1682-1700, (Unpublished Masters Thesis, Motreal: McGill University, 1968)

[57] Bernard Jacques, (ed.), The acts and negotiations, together with the particular articles at large, of the general peace, concluded at Ryswick, etc., (London: Robert Clavel, 1698)

[58] Shepard Krech, The Subarctic Fur Trade: Native Social and Economic Adaptions. (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 1984) p.38

[59] E. E. Rich, ‘The Hudson’s Bay Company and the Treaty of Utrecht,’ The Cambridge Historical Journal, Vol. 11, No. 2 (1954), pp. 183-203

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