For those of you who are serious archival researchers -- or even those who know who their fur trade ancestor was and want to learn more about him from primary or secondary sources, here is a fur trade resource you may be able to put to use:
This is a Fur Trade Bibliography, found online at http://members.shaw.ca/gearens/HistandClass/bibliofur.htm
You can probably find this by googling "Fur Trade Bibliography."
It is a 66-page document which lists primary and secondary resources for publications in the fur trade.
If you are still looking for the records of fur trade employees, these are listed in various documents in secondary resources:
Allaire, Gratien. "Fur Trade Engages: 1701-1745." In Rendezvous. Selected Papers of the Fourth North American Fur Trade Conference, 15-26. St.-Paul: North American Fur Trade Conference, 1984;
And that's it -- but there are plenty of primary documents and journals of fur traders in which you might find your ancestor listed.
But there are other books/articles you might like to read:
Dugas, Georges. Un Voyageur Des Pays d'en Haut. Montreal: C.O. Beauchemin & fills, 1890;
Gross, Konrad. "Coureurs-de-Bois, Voyageurs and Trappers: The Fur Trade and the Emergence of an Ignored Canadian Literary Tradition." Canadian Literature 127 (1990): 76-91;
Hansen, James L. "'Half-Breed' Rolls and Fur Trade Families in the Great Lakes Region -- An Introduction and Bibliography." In The Fur Trade Revisited: Selected Papers of The Sixth North American Fur Trade Conference, Mackinac Island, Michigan, 1991, edited by Jennifer S.H. Brown, W.J. Eccles, and Donald P. Heldman, 161-69. East Lansing/Mackinac Island: Michigan State University Press, 1991;
Jonasson, Eric. "General List of Partners, Clerks, and Interpreters Who Winter in the North West Company's Service with the Dates and Nature of Their Respective Engagements." Generations -- The Journal of the Manitoba Genealogical Society 4, no.3 (Fall 1979): 64-66.
Lande, Lawrence M. The Development of the Voyageur Contract, 1686-1821. Montreal: McGill University-Lawrence Lande Foundation for Canadian History Research, 1989;
Schaeffer, Claude E. Le Blanc and La Gasse, Predecessors of David Thompson in the Columbian Plateau. Browning, Mont.: Museum of the Plains Indian, 1966;
Schenk, Theresa M. "The Cadottes: Five Generations of Fur Taders on Lake Superior." In the Fur Trade Revisited: Selected Papers of The Sixth North American Fur Trade Conference, Mackinac Island, Michigan, 1991, edited by Jennifer S.H. Brown, W.J. Eccles, and Donald P. Heldman, 189-98. East Lansing/Mackinac Island: Michigan State University Press, 1994; and
Wilson, Ian and Sally wilson. "In the Spirit of the Voyageurs." The Beaver, June-July 1999, 9-16.
There are some that I am especially interested in, articles that may form the basis of a later blog posting.
Howay, F.W. "Authorship of 'Traits of Indian Life'. Oregon Historical Quarterly XXXV (1934): 42-49 -- I always wondered why Alexander Caulfield Anderson was never considered as a possible collector of these Peter Skene Ogden stories; and
Innes, Harold Adams. Peter Pond, Fur Trade and Adventurer. Toronto: Irwin & Gordon, 1930 -- you will find out why I am interested in this character in a later posting.