Posted by: Kate | December 14, 2012

Fort St. James

One of our last major stops on our Northern BC trip was at the historic site of Fort St. James. I love visiting historical sites, especially the Canadian heritage ones. There is something so sincere and well-intentioned about them! Plus being national sites they are bilingual, which I love.

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We just happened to arrive on Metis Days, and so there were some fun, free events happening in the Fort. Before we even got in we were invited to go on a free cart ride. So many people got on that Bushboy actually ended sitting up front with the driver, which he loved!

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Once inside, we learned a great deal about the local fur trade. These posts were set up by the Hudson Bay Company, who at one time controlled the world-wide fur trade. In fact if not for the Hudson Bay Company, it is debatable if BC and Northern Canada would have been so thoroughly explored so early in Canada’s history.

There was a wonderful assortment of old buildings, such as the old store where fur traders would bring their money after selling their furs. Lots of useful goods for the cold climate!

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Imagining how far people walked in the winter on their trapping routes and how they got around before the roads and railroad tracks is quite mind blowing.

Our favourite part was the weapons practise, where we got to play with traditional Metis weapons (ok the paintballs as slingshot ammo were probably not so traditional). We tried the slingshot and the atlatl, which the guys mastered but I did not do so well with.

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The old buildings and the setting on the lake made this a great place to spend a couple of hours. I highly recommend an afternoon at a Heritage Site!

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Responses

  1. looks like a nice place

  2. Fabulous Kate! I LOVE historic sites. It looks like you all, & esp. BB, had alot of fun :) Reading your words reminded me of the book I read last year. “Working with Wool” – Sylvia Olsen. I loved my Cowichan sweater so much, I had to buy this book. And it is amazing.

    It’s an historical book telling the story of “A Coast Salish Legacy & the Cowichan Sweater”. Sylvia speaks of the massive fur trade with the HBC and the Salish people. After reading this book, I felt saddened by how the “white people” took advantage of the Salish people, trading the famous HBC blankets for their furs.

    I think any knitter or fibre artist would enjoy reading this book.

  3. oh wow! it looks like such a fun place! i love living history sites… thanks for taking us along.

  4. An interactive historical site at that…the best kind! It is mind-blowing to think about how people lived without the modern conveniences!


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