Fur Trade in Canada

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  • Edition: Reprint
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 1999-04-01
  • Publisher: Univ of Toronto Pr
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Supplemental Materials

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At the time of its publication in 1930, The Fur Trade in Canadachallenged and inspired scholars, historians, and economists. Now, almost seventy years later, Harold Innis's fundamental reinterpretation of Canadian history continues to exert a magnetic influence. Innis has long been regarded as one of Canada's foremost historians, and in The Fur Trade in Canada he presents several histories in one: social history through the clash between colonial and aboriginal cultures; economic history in the development of the West as a result of Eastern colonial and European needs; and transportation history in the case of the displacement of the canoe by the York boat. Political history appears in Innis's examination of the nature of French-British rivalry and the American Revolution; and business history is represented in his detailed account of the Hudson's Bay and Northwest Companies and the industry that played so vital a role in the expansion of Canada. In his introduction to this new edition, Arthur J. Ray argues that The Fur Trade in Canadais the most definitive economic history and geography of the country ever produced. Innis's revolutionary conclusion - that Canada was created because of its geography, not in spite of it - is a captivating idea but also an enigmatic proposition in light of the powerful decentralizing forces that threaten the nation today. Ray presents the history of the book and concludes that "Innis's great book remains essential reading for the study of Canada."

Author Biography

Arthur J. Ray is a professor in the Department of History at the University of British Columbia.

Table of Contents

The Beaverp. 3
The French Regime
Beginnings of the Fur Trade on the Atlantic Coast (1497-1600)p. 9
The Struggle for the Ottawa (1600-1663)p. 23
The Struggle for the Great Lakes and Hudson Bay (1663-1713)p. 43
The Expansion of Trade to the Saskatchewan and the Northwest (1713-1763)p. 84
A Century of Trade on Hudson Bay (1670-1770)p. 119
From the Atlantic to the Pacific (1763-1821)
The Hudson's Bay Companyp. 149
The Northwest Companyp. 166
The St. Lawrence Drainage Basin versus Hudson Bayp. 263
From Hudson Bay to the Pacific (1821-1869)
The Northern Departmentp. 283
The Industrial Revolution and the Fur Trade (1869-1929)
The Decline of Monopolyp. 341
Conclusionp. 383
Appendicesp. 405
Referencesp. 421
Indexp. 443
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

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