For nearly two and a half centuries, the bedrock of the Hudson’s Bay Company was the fur trade.
Over time, the methods and tools used for trapping changed, but the relationship between trappers and traders remained the same, with each party aiming to barter for the best deal.
In The Beaver’s December 1943 issue, writer and photographer J.F. Dalmon published “The Trapper,” a photo essay on the business of trapping and trading at Norway House, an HBC outpost at the northern end of Lake Winnipeg in Manitoba.
Norway House was built along the Nelson River in 1817, and by the 1830s it had grown into a major trading depot. Eventually, it became the seat of the Council of the Northern Department of Rupert’s Land.
“The Trapper” follows the story of Isaiah Clark, a Cree trapper, as he prepares to head into the wilderness in search of marten, mink, fox, and other valuable furs.