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The BeaverIts Life and Impact$
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Dietland Muller-Schwarze

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780801450105

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801450105.001.0001

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“Here before Christ”

“Here before Christ”

Fur Trade, the “Beaver Republic” (Hudson’s Bay Company), and Fur Trapping Today

Chapter:
(p.150) Chapter 17 “Here before Christ”
Source:
The Beaver
Author(s):

Dietland Müller-Schwarze

Publisher:
Cornell University Press
DOI:10.7591/cornell/9780801450105.003.0017

This chapter examines the historical impact of fur trapping and fur trade on beaver populations. The beaver has lured fur trappers and traders more and more deeply into the northern wilderness from the mid-1600s to the late 1850s, a period spanning 200 years. Prehistoric finds show that early humans were attracted to beaver sites. In Somerset in southwest England, for example, beaver-gnawed willow sticks were found in association with human plank-built trackways from the Neolithic. This chapter traces the beginnings of fur trapping and fur trading from the fifteenth to the twentieth centuries. It looks at the so-called beaver wars between England and France that erupted in the seventeenth century, the steps involved in making a beaver hat, and beaver trapping today.

Keywords:   fur trapping, fur trade, beaver, beaver wars, England, France, beaver hat, beaver trapping

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