Sunday, October 30, 2011

Another important online fur trade resource

I often receive emails from persons on the other side of the world.
They have stumbled across my blog and need more information on their fur trade ancestors in Canada.
I try to answer every question I get asked, and one of my resources -- with which I have been very fortunate -- is this:
"The Dictionary of Canadian Biography online," at
There is a tremendous amount of history and biography located on this site, and it is all accurate as all of the biographies are written by historians interested in the particular character they are writing about.
An excellent resource easily accessible to anyone, from anywhere on the planet!

One of the most important things about this site is that at the bottom of the page, the author will list the sources for the information contained in the biography.
That gives the researcher an opportunity to view the sources and learn something more about your ancestor.
In fact, for many years I didn't look at the bottom of Alexander Caulfield Anderson's biography in the Dictionary of Canadian Biography.
When I finally checked through the list, I discovered one source I hadn't viewed -- and that source contained an affectionate, personal description of Anderson that far exceeded anything I had already collected.

Should you have discovered that you have an ancestor who worked in the early fur trade in Detroit or Montreal, then there is a book that you have to obtain so that you can understand the early fur trade -- which differed from the fur trade of the North West Company and the HBC.
I have mentioned this book before on my blog -- here it is again:
"Winner Take All; The Trans-Canada Canoe Trail," by David Lavender, published by McGraw Hill in New York, Toronto, St. Louis, Dusseldorf, Mexico and Panama, in 1977.
I found my copy in a second hand bookstore, but if you are in Australia (where many of my correspondents are) than you may have to order the book online.

I am taking a brief holiday in Vancouver, and so might not be posting anything more this weekend.
I will return.

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