Fur Trade Essay

A primary object of the terrestrial fur trade was beaver, the soft underfur of which was turned into expensive and sought-after beaver hats. Lawrence River, Jacques Cartier traded European goods, such as axes, cloth, and glass beads, to Indians who waved beaver furs on sticks from the shoreline, a sign that they had already engaged in trade with Europeans.

By about 1870, through treaties and the establishment of the reservation system, Native subsistence bases had practically collapsed, and Indians could no longer survive on the natural products of their own land.

Still, the fur trade and Indian trade offer a deep-time continuity that is unmatched in North American history.

Such activities initiated what became known as the China Trade, which was at first a subsidiary component of the fur trade.

Over time, however, the trade developed into a much more elaborate commerce and became a tool to force China to open its markets to an expanded trade with Europe and the United States.

Commercial traders soon followed, exchanging copper, weapons, liquor, and varied goods for sea otter pelts.

Natives also acquired syphilis, gonorrhea, and other diseases from the seafarers who sojourned on the Oregon Coast.breasted the deadly sandbars at the mouth of a river he named Columbia.

Great Britain set out to create a vast global empire, using the tools of conquest, colonization, and commerce.

The royal navy's expeditions of "discovery" and trade advanced British interests everywhere, including the practically uncharted regions of the North Pacific Ocean.

The fur trade was the earliest and longest-enduring economic enterprise that colonizers, imperialists, and nationalists pursued in North America.

It significantly shaped North American history, especially from 1790 until 1840, when the trade played a dramatic and critical role in the Oregon Country, which included present-day Oregon and Washington and portions of Idaho, Montana, and British Columbia.


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