« AnteriorContinuar »
and their reply.---Vigil
VI. Review of Kidd's Geological
of General Fraser
241 VII. Review of Schmucker on the
mond, a Metrical Romance 254 VIII. Review of Orbija's Treatise on
IX. Review of An Essay on Amer.
Physico-Medical Society 270 X. Review of Darby's Emigrant's
VI. Review of the Progress of Soci- XII. Original Communications, Assay
of native Copper-Life of Mr.
VIJI. Review of Milnor's Address 282
the Fishes sold in the New-
VI. Review of Mandeville
VIII. Review of Plan of the Society
for the Promotion of Indus-
AMERICAN MONTHLY MAGAZINE
No. I..... Vol. II.
Art. 1. A Narrative of Occurrences in the Indian countries of North America,
since the connexion of the Right Hon. the Earl of Selkirk with the Hudson's Bar Company, and his attempt to establish a Colony on the Red River; with a detailed account of his lordship's military expedition to, and subsequent proceedings at Fort William, in Upper Canada. London. 1817. 8vo. pp. 239. THOUGH not directly interested in Quarterly Review*, which we trust will tween lord Selkirk and the North West Jlow so pregnant an inquiry should Company, we cannot feel wholly in- have been suffered to fall into such total different to the decision of a claim involv- neglect it is not easy to imagine. The ing the jurisdiction of a large tract of same fortitude and perseverance which this continent, nor view with unconcern have been wasted in exploring the sterile the violent measures by which that claim deserts of Africa for comparatively frivohas been enforced. Had the sanguinary lous purposes, would long since have arscenes to which lord Selkirk's pretensions rived at some certain conclusion on this have given rise, occurred in a remote most momentous point. We feel as ifadequarter of the globe, they would have at gree of responsibility attached to our own tracted some attention from the novelty government on this
head. As the second of the spectacle exhibited. Not that commercial power in the world, and the bloodshed is uncommon in our day, nor first in this hemisphere, it might bave that there is any thing remarkable in the been expected that some portion of our organizing of a body of desperados, by national spirit of maritime adventure a popular leader for any enterprise, under would have been directed to an object so any colours, but that a British peer's turn- worthy, in either regard, of our attention, ing commercial speculator and land-job- The Russian Count Romanzoff, with dis; ber, and leaving his seat in parliament to tinguished liberality, has equipped, at his wage war in his Britannic Majesty's do- private expense, a vessel under the comminions against a company of British mand of Lieut. Kotzebue, for a voyage merchants, is, even in these extraordinary into the Arctic Sea, through Behring's times, a little singular-whilst the apathy Strait, in search of a passage into the with which the British ministry and the Atlantic. This vessel was despatched Colonial government have looked upon more than a year since from St. Peters: transactions so disgraceful to the national burgh, and touched at Plymouth in Engcharacter, and so derogatory to the na- land. The attempt to sail through, from tional faith, is still more strange and un- the Pacific Ocean into Hudson's Bay, or accountable. But the most important Baffin's Bay, was probably made last consequence of lord Selkirk's expedition, summer. We are yet to learn the issue to us and to the world at large, and one of the enterprise. This splendid instance which, independentof his failureorsuccess, of individual munificence and enthusiasm is its bringing again into notice a region to in the cause of science should rouse an which a century since all eyes were turn- honourable emulation in enlightened and pd, and reviving a question which had opulent mercantile communities. We been put at rest without being solved. The impractibility of a North-West pas- * No. XXXI.—Where the possibility sage to the Indies is far from being ascer- of the passage is maintained, and a good certained, and the present occasion has account given of the various attempts led to a discussion of the subject in the made to effect it,
commend this example to the considera- land, to look into the charter of the Hudtion of our national legislature.
son's Bay Company, which was incorpoFrom the narrative before us, from rated by Charles the II. He found in this Mackenzie's travels, and from the outline charter a grant to this company of an inoflord Selkirk’s ‘Sketch of the Fur Trade, definite extent of territory bounding on &c.' contained in the Review already re- Hudson's Bay. He found, too, that the ferred to, we gather the following history nominal stock of this company was of the origin and progress of the dispute £100,000, and that the shares had fallen between his lordship and the North West from 250 per cent. to 50 or 60 per cent. Traders. Previous to the year 1806, the His lordship purchased shares to the earl of Selkirk was engaged in several nominal amount of £40,000, and obschemes of colonization in the British tained the virtual control of the Compossessions in North America. He first pany's affairs. He next procured a grant to formed a settlement at Prince Edward's himself of about 116,000 square miles of Island—and on a visit to Canada, becom- the company's supposed territory, coming acquainted with the nature and extent mencing at Lake Winnipic, and running, of thefur trade, projected a plan for mono- some hundred miles into the territory of polizing it. At that period this trade was the U. States. His lordship now began principally carried on by an association to advertise for settlers, and soon obtainof merchants called the North Wested a number of Irish and Scotch families, Company, which had recently been or- which he shipped off to Hudson's Bay, ganized by the individuals who had for- under the conduct of Mr. Miles Macdon-* merly pursued the same trafic on their nell, whom he appointed governor of the separate accounts. The stock of this Colony. The detachment arrived at company
is divided into a hundred shares, York Fort, and proceeded to Red River, and each share confers a vote. Thirty of which it reached in the autumn of 1812. these shares are owned by a single house Gov. Macdonnell's first care was to make in Montreal, and eighteen or nineteen by due provision for the subsistence of his different houses in Montreal and London. people. This he was not immediately The remaining shares are held by the able to do, but was obliged to distribute wintering partners, who manage the af- them in the winter in the company's fairs of the company in the interior, and forts. The next winter he issued a prowho after having served a certain term of clamation in his quality of governor of years, are permitted to retire with an an- · Ossiniboia,' prohibiting the exportation nual allowance, and the vacancy is filled of provisions of any kind from the counby the election of a clerk who must have tries within his jurisdiction. This properformed a previous tourof duty. Such a vince is thus meted and bounded in this system is admirably calculated to stimu- document—" Beginning on the western late all parties to activity. This company shore of the Lake Winnipic, at a point in has in its employ about 2000 voyageurs, fifty-two degrees and thirty minutes north who transport merchandise and provisions latitude, and thence running due west to to the various posts and depots, and col. the Lake Winnipiquarhish, otherwise calllect the returns of furs and peltries. These ed Little Winnipic; then in a southerly returns amount annually to about 100,000 direction through the said Lake, so as to beaver skins, 2100 bear skins, 5500 strike its western shore in latitude fiftyfox, 4600 otter, 17,000 musquash, 82,000 two degrees; then due west to the place marten, 1800 mink, 60. lynx, 600 where the parallel of forty-two degrees wolverine, 1600 fisher, 100 rackoon, 3800 north latitude intersects the western wolf, 700 elks, and 2000 deer skins. The branch of the Red River, otherwise called distance of the Red River, on which this Assiniboin River; then due south from company had a post, from Montreal, is that point of intersection to the height of 2300 miles by the nearest route, that of land which separates the waters running Lake Superior. This post is about equi- into Hudson's Bay from those of the Misdistant from Lake Superior and from souri and Mississippi Rivers; then in an Hudson's Bay, and appears to be the easterly direction along the height of land nearest point of the contested territory to to the source of the River Winnipic, the inhabited parts of Canada. His lord- (meaning by such last named river, the ship having possessed himself of various principal branch of the waters which information in regard to the establishments unite in the Lake Sagingae); thence along of this association, and perceiving its the main streams of those waters, and the greater facility of access from Hudson's middle of the several lakes through which Bay, was induced, on his return to Eng. they flow, to the mouth of the Winnipic