Fur Trade

1338 Words6 Pages
Title: How the fur trade was a significant part of Canadian history, and the role of the native females during the fur-trade.

The fur trade was a significant part of Canadian history. With the founding of the Hudson's Bay and Northwest Company during the1670's, the fur trade managed growth and development all the way into Western Canada until 1870. The fur trade was unique, for it was the only industry that was based on an exchange of goods between two very different groups of people (namely, the Indians and the Europeans). Although most people think of the fur trade as being a male dominated industry, Indian women also played very important roles in the industry's development. However, the women's experiences differed in relation to
…show more content…
Once at home, they would receive great status in their aboriginal communities. Some of the other woman decided to stay in the trading posts with their family, while staying there they would receive a pension that had been arranged by their husbands in addition, many times the companies would make the woman remarry another trader. During these situations the women's wishes weren't respected.
The Native women were also responsible for raising the family. While being married to a trader, the wife was supposed to act as one of their wives from back home. Usually the wife/mother would wake up early in the morning and start the day such by making food or even preparing the furs for them to be sent back to Europe. Most women would also catch the food for the family, while their husbands were occupied with the trades. They were also responsible for raising their daughters and teaching them the general skills of a woman. The sons would also stay with their mothers at home. However, when they became men they would follow their fathers and learn the business.
Unfortunately, native women were also used for sexual reasons during the fur trade. They were treated with no dignity from their aboriginal husbands or community. At the time, in most areas of the world it was not acceptable for a European to have sexual contact with a Native woman. In the Indian society, the exchanging of wives was very common, for an Indian husband deemed it perfectly proper
Get Access