This is a virtually complete transcription of Peter Fidlers Ile a la Crosse Journal from 1810-1811 by Alex Nicol
A short version is here
Ile a la Crosse Journal Peter Fidler
June 9 1810
" at 8 AM Sent 12 men in 2 Batteaux to go to Churchill Factory with the few furs Mr. Sutherland & self have traded here & at The Methy Lake where he wintered. he remains here to Settle at Green Lake to try if the Southern Indians who inhabit That place will be more manly than the Northern Indians - who are so very much afraid of the Canadians from the constant ill usage & beatings They receive from them if they wish to trade with us - as they very much wish to do if left to their own free choice - on account of the better treatment & more goods they trade from us at the same price. I remain here all Summer to be able if pofsible to induce some of the Northern Indians to trade with us.
" Gave Charge of the Boats to David Garson a very careful man & sent with him 2 Galls Brandy, 50 Ball, 6 lbs? Shot, 10 gun flints & 2 fathoms of Tobacco in case he sees any Natives on The road to Trade with. Mr. Sutherland self & 5 men at present remain at Isle a la Crofse House, one hour after our people embarked Mr John Macgillivray in a light Canoe with 8 Men arrived here at Canadian House from the Little Slave Lake down Beaver river - at 10 AM the Athapescow Light Canoe arrived here with 8 Men and Mefs Duncan McTavish Pierre Rochblaue? & John Thompson all Proprietors of the Canadian Company."
" Early this morning They all embarked for the Grand Portage, now dignified with the name of Fort William. Mr. John McDonnel my opponent here this Winter accompanied them - An Indian Man came slyly over to our House as none are allower to come openly & publicly & told us that there were 13 Hunting Southern Indians at the Green Lake constantly residing there besides several expected there from the Saskatchewan River. we go there in expectation of Receiving some of the Credits due our Houses there. That they change situations often times to avoid paying"
" Mr. Sutherland and self cut our little Boat in two to lengthen it 4 feet as at present it is too short to be of use for us to go up to settle at the Green Lake with as we have no Canoe adapted to that purpose & the Canadians will not allow the Northern Indians to sell us any on no account whatever. 2 Men looking out for good Pines that we may get the Bark off them to cover all our Buildings - The rest at work in the garden."
" Finished taking out roots from the Garden & digging it. The 2 men returned having found no Trees for Bark to cover our Houses with. must now go to examine in another quarter."
" Sewed Turnip seed of various kinds in the Garden & set many plants. also dug a trench along the west side of our Garden to keep the water from running into it after heavy rains - Mr. James Keith with 9 women & 6 Children went away in two Canoes. They are to summer at the Green Lake. 24 Women with their families here & at the Green Lake of the Canadians. Made an Oar & put our Large Boat down to the waters edge to go & fetch Pine Bark from the Egg Lake to cover our Houses with as at present being covered with earth only They leak much in heavy rain."
" Heavy rain all Day & our House much uncommoded by water running thro the roof."
June 15 1810
" Sent 5 men with the Boat up This Lake for Pine Bark. They returned in the evening with only 30 pieces. a Canadian Man & his woman accompanied our Men in an Indian Canoe to keep any Indians from having any Trade or even communication with as the very sight of a Canadian will effectively frighten them from speaking or even coming near us. Self & Mr Sutherland nearly finished lengthening the Little Boat built by the Carpenter this Spring."
" Sent the men towards Egg Lake for Pine Bark. They returned back in the evening too strong a wind to proceed forwards."
" In the Evening a Canadian Man & 9 women went away in the Evening in a Canoe towards Egg Lake for Bark."
" Sent all hands away for Bark in the Boat to Egg Lake. Caulked & Pitched the Little Boat and anchored her out in the Lake. 21 Canoes (loaded) arrived here of the Canadians from the Athapescow Country with two Clerks to overlook Them. Mefs Clark & McDougal. They had their usual impudence to overhaul our Nets at the point in sight of the House and pretty near us"
" Wrote a note to the Canadian Master Mr Robert Henry wishing him to allow his Blacksmith to repair us 3 Axes & 3 Hoes as we have neither Smith nor tools - he returned for answer he was already Employed on their own businefs."
" Made a Door for the North Garden. Bad Leaf, Ned? & another Canadian free Men arrived at the French House in a Canoe from Cold Lake. They say that our people left White mud House in the Saskatchewan River 27 May for York Factory - Indians there all very troublesome making & threatening War."
June 21 1810
" Traded from Ned? a free Canadian a Tent of 10 Skins, 9 minks, 1 otter, 2 Cats & 2 Bear Skins all for Tobacco as none to be got at the Saskatchewan River. at 7 PM 11 Loaded Canoes of Canadians with two Clerks Mefs Black & Faris? arrived here from the Athapescow Country. A Canadian man came privately over to me & gave me the following information. That They with McTavish in the Light Canoe left the Athapescow Lake 2d June. They were 9 Days on the Methy Portage owing to rainy weather - 32 Canoes have 24 Packs each of 85 lbs all Beaver Skins nearly - all the Cats, wolves, wolarens etc left in the Country as They had not a sufficiency of men to carry Them down to the Grand Portage and leave a few behind to take care of their Settlements and untraded Goods. one Canoe has 15 Packs making in all 783 packs being rather more than last year exclusive of the number of Packs of other furs left in the Country -
" 5 Canoes wint'd beyond The Rocky Mountain up Peace river amongst The Carrier Indians and get from Thence 75 Packs. This is rather a new businefs in Trading with Those Distant Tribes & promises to be advantagous? notwithstanding the vast distance & very bad road thro the Mountains. Six of their Canoes are from The Slave Lake & the furs purchased in Mckenzies river & Bears Lake - The Southern Indians at the Athapescow Lake now make a great deal of Dry Provisions sufficient to serve all the Canadian Canoes out from Thence to Chamberland? House as formerly when Three Companies were there very little was to be had from them such a competition & the Natives getting every thing so much cheaper Than now There is but one House.
Our men came home with 236 pieces of Pine Bark for roofing - a Canadian man & his wife constantly attending them to prevent any Indians from having any connections with us we cannot stir any distance from the House but what we are constantly followed by the Rascals."
" Sent all hands away to take 1000 pieces of Pine Bark to cover our buildings with. All the Canadian Canoes embarked for the Rainy Lake - also the 3 freemen who are going acrofs into the Saskatchewan middle of next month - Wrote & sent by them a few lines acquainting him of our going to settle the Green Lake soon & for him to send us the exact amount of all the Indians & Free Canadian Credits who are likely to visit this place that they may be received for the Company & to prevent Their cheating us which they are too apt to do. 4 Canoes of Northern Indians or Jepowyans went to the Canadians House - Some radish up - Potatoes up 3 days ago."
June 23 1810
" The Indians who went to the Canadian House yesterday all went away - at Dusk in the evening one of them came sly ly here walking Thro a wide swamp arm pit deep- being afraid to come here openly for fear of The Canadians, he comes for a little Credit for 4 men, he says that the Canadians locked them all up last night to prevent Their coming over to our House which they all very much wished. gave him but a very little Credit. He went away in the same sly way as he came, being greatly terrified for fear of seeing a Canadian."
" Saturday. our men came with 310 pieces of Bark. Cadot a Canadian & his wife always keep in our mens Company to keep Indians from having any dealings with us - Mr. Sutherland & self ?? Plank for the Lower floor in my room."
" as the wind was fair sent all our Men away for more Bark - A Canadian man & boy accomp'd as usual our men."
July 2 1810
" at 11 AM Mr. Robert Henry the Canadian Master, James Black a Clerk, Jebou the Blacksmith & la waile marked out a place for a house only 10 feet Distant from our Stockades to the North of our House - Henry tells us that it is by law they can build within 10 feet of a House. Mr. Sutherland & self forbad their building so very near in the name of the Hudsons Bay Company but they persevered & cleared a place for a House and also marked off about 50 or 60 yards square with sticks about 10 feet apart marked NW Ft and a tracking line tyed to them all. Their House before is not above 150 yds distant from ours & on the South side us and now they are building on the ? side so very near us for the express purpose to prevent a single Native from entering our Doors. They stand at nothing to get every thing the Indians kill. nor do I now expect a single native will be able to give us any thing privately as none will be suffered to enter our Doors - What a most unpleasant Thing to prevent the Natives from coming to Trade with us openly - as they all in General wish to do - as they always receive from us a better treatment & more Goods considerably for their Peltries than the Canadians will give them."
July 3 1810
" French hawling Logs to build their Watch House here with - all ready squared so They seem to have had this plan in contemplation some time back in short. I have been privately informed That McDonnell wrote to the Athapescow in Feb'y last to bring Mr. Black from thence to remain here, a person the best calculated I ever knew, to do any unjustifiable action- he is the same person who at the Athapescow in the winter & spring 1806 would not rest in the night, but kept nightly a constant watch to keep all Indians from coming to our house & who danced, sang & beat on our Dwelling House & alarmed & Disturbed every one within. The Canadians being? so numerous to the Hudson Bay Companys Servants they stick at nothing to promote their own Interests howsoever repugnant to right. he is a person very fitting to be made an example of in terror to others of them - as They say as they are the strongest side they will do as they chuse - as both Law & Justice they laugh at. My Journal of 1806 at the Athapescow Lake mentions several atrocities commited by him & his colleagues? They are determined to drive us away from this place by harrafsing us & our people - so Henry told us yesterday - Men came home with Pine Bark."
July 5 1810
" Mr Black goes about our house at almost all hours in the night hallowing Loud on purpose to disturb us exactly as he did at the Athapescow Lake"
July 6 1810
" all our Men came home with the last of the Pine Bark. 1270 Pieces in all & Andrew Kirknefs woman, on some dispute with her Husband went over to the French House."
July 7 1810
" Self & Mr. Sutherland went over to the Canadian House to get Andrew Kirknefs woman to return again to him.- but she had been so much threatened by the Canadians that she was afraid to return as they told her that they would cut off her ears if she leaves them.- so she told him."
" Received a note from Mr Henry telling us we had no right to set nets towards where theirs are its being the best place. They want to monopolize every thing - when according to the invaluable custom of Hudsons Bay that any person has a right to set any Net or Nets provided they be distant from those standing the whole length of one net"
" Wednesday. at Midnight Mr. Black shrieked twice very loud & disturbed every one of us within- he comes as near our Dwelling House as our Stockades will allow him. on Saturday spoke to Henry about his not allowing any of his people to shriek & disturb us in the night - which he promised we should not - Sent a note to Mr Henry desiring him not to suffer any of his Servants to disturb us in the Night & received from him one calling it a frivolous thing - All hands putting on Pine Bark on the roof of the House & finished nearly 2/3 of it. Henry sent us word to take up all our Nets - tho they are above 1 1/2 net length from any of theirs."
" Mr. Black hallowed twice very loud, one at the East Gate & then at the West Gate - finished roofing the dwelling house with Pine Bark."
July 13 1810
" At 11 2/3 PM Mr. Black came to our East Gate & called loud 'You ought to keep your doors shut' - he then pafsed close along our Stockades to the West Gate & called ' Shut your Doors & keep out the Muskettoes' and afterwards 'If any one wishes to wrangle with me come out here I am'. Then gave two loud whoops & went away. Finished covering the Boat & fish House with Bark - we have about 320 pieces remaining."
" One man digging a Trench from the corner of our Stockades down to the Lake to set up Stockades to prevent Mr Black & the Canadians from having a free pafsage close by our East Gate - Three? getting Stockades - Mr Black planted 2 NW marks one on each side of our West Track about 12 feet from our Stockades & about 4 yards on each side of the Track."
July 18 1810
" 4 Men put up 96 Stockades from the corner of our Stockades down to the Lake to prevent the Canadians from pafsing close to our East & front Gates. the Canadians cut a Track from their Watch house here toward their big House within 10 feet of our Stockades, a thing never known before to cut so near one another & right over our Dunghill - at 11PM Mr. Black went round our Stockades we set This Day & came up to our front Gates & hallowed loud & began cutting wood close at our Gates and alarmed & disturbed every body.- Joseph Heywood & Mr. Sutherland went out to desire him to keep quiet & let us sleep- he told them he would do as he liked & that he was fixed here for the exprefs purpose to prevent any Native whatever from entering our House & that they should pafs over his Belly before a single one should enter it.- He challenged all & said he would disturb us whenever he thought proper by hallowing, firing Guns & by & by we should hear him Dance & sing & every thing that he knew could disturb us."
July 21 1810
" at Midnight Mr Black hallowed several times loud & cut wood on purpose to disturb us at the West Gates - Canadians widening the Track at the West side of our Stockades. Mr Henry & Black put up each posted on a seperate board copies of the ?? warrants made by Mr Auld for the Apprehension of various Canadian Proprietors & Clerks for sundry high Crimes committed by them on Persons & property of the Hudson Bay Company - issued at Deers Lake 1809 & given to Mr Henry? Ten are put up in Derision & defiance of every Law & Justice & to make us believe that they don't mind the least about any thing of the Kind of either apprehension or Punishment waiting them - They are so numerous in respect of us that the Strongest with them is every thing - Its a great pity some example could be made to convince them to the contrary as in consequence the Interest of the HBC suffers exceedingly."
" at 9 1/2 AM Sent Mr Sutherland with Wm Findley & James Leeny? in the Little Boat to build at the Green Lake - half an hour after they had gone Mr Black came to our East Gates & missed the Boat. when he and all the Men at the Canadian House set off in search of them except Mr Henry - we cannot be allowed to go any where without being followed by them."
" In the Evening Mr Black & others of the Canadians returned having found our People & left one to escort them on purpose to keep Indians from coming near us as it is well known that the sight of a Canadian will so frighten the Natives as to be frightened of speaking to us."
" French covered their new built Watch house here 14 feet square with Pine Bark & burnt the rubbish about it. Last night Andrew Kirknefs went to the Canadian house. he goes there slyly, altho I have frequently forbad him as perhaps he tells things he knows - They have he says drawn out a Contract for him to sign some time ago but that he will not go there."
July 29 1810
" 3 Jepowyans in a Canoe went to the French House - We are so well guarded that not a single one durst venture near us & They well know that they will at the least get a very severe beating. In the Evening they returned"
July 30 1810
" Early this morning Mr. Black hallowed loud on account we suppose of the Indians arriving yesterday"
July 31 1810
" Last night Mr. Black hallowed long & loud at the Front Gates & remained there a long while."
" Between 4 & 5 oClock this morning Andrew Kirknefs went away privately & took every thing belonging to him to the French House. he has had a Contract drawn out these 3 weeks but I believe not syned till late at 30 L per annum - The Canadians keeping his Woman is the cause of his going there - as they do every thing They can to distrefs us. at 6 am the french began to cut down every tree & willow close along the West & South side of our Garden - that it is not pofsible for any one was he ever so much inclined to enter our house unperceived - with the continual Watch they keep - In the afternoon They put down a Launch within 10 feet of our Stockades - Put into our House one of our Fishing Batteaux as we are all constantly afraid that the Canadians will send them adrift."
" As Andrew Kirknefs is now gone away who was our fisherman on which our subsistance depend only two young inexperienced hands with me ? Know nothing of net mending or setting My Woman undertakes it till our Boats arrive from Churchill factory which we expect will be about one month from hence. at night a Southern Indian went to the french House."
" French set 3 Nets 3 Days ago at Landmans point & only got one Succor Per Day from them. They set them here now as Indians are expected to pafs soon that they may go to them whenever we go to ours to hinder us from speaking to them."
" Mr Blacks watch house being I believe now ready compleat he moved his Bedding & things into it & I imagine slept in it the first time - Strong wind ? ? our Nets this 2 Days past. The 2 men at home dayly? plastering the Buildings against winter & working in the Garden. & finished laying the floors in my room & partition etc.
" A large Canoe with 6 Jepowyan Men went to the Canadian House"
" Finished making an oven - 3 Days work for us"
" 2 Jepowyans in one Canoe went to the French House - in the Evening they returned. Also another Indian & his wife went to French house in a Canoe & a Candian & his wife accompanied them"
" Joseph Heywood at the Nets saw 2 Indian lads going to the French House with meat - They told him they would all be in about 10 Days hence"
" Mr Black every time both morning & evening comes down to our Track perhaps thinking that our Men yesterday had got some meat from the 2 Indians that he saw"
" Last night from 9 1/2 to 11 Mr Black hallowing very loud several times close to our house - Missed this morning 2 Nets dragged for them but found none."
August 26 1810
" Last night at 10 1/2 Mr. Black hallowed loud several times & then fired a Shot close to our House which awoke & alarmed us all. In the afternoon he snapped a Short Gun at Charley [Fidler's son] pointed straight for him Thro the South window in his Watch house and not above 12 yards from where the boy was - who was carrying into our yard a billet of Firewood."
" Dragged for our Nets all day & could not find them"
Aug 28 1810
" Last night Mr. Black Danced & Jumped & hallowed several times near his Launch end to make our Dogs bark much & to disturb us. Six Canoes of southern Indians went to the French House - Mr Black came down to our fishing Canoe when the Man come ashore to see what he had got in it. Set 3 Nets near Old House point as few are now to be caught at Landmans point where we have had them mostly all summer"
Aug 30 1810
" One net we had standing at Landmans point was cut away in the night at one End, but fortunately we found it again by dragging. Sent over the rope to let Mr. Henry see it had been cut by some of his people - Ever since we missed our 2 Nets about a week ago Mr Black has constantly been down to see if we had got them. as we now have not any doubt but he had cut them both away at both ends & they have drifted away & lost. They will not allow a Single Indian to bring us the least provisions - we have then only our Nets to depend on for a livelyhood & those being cut adrift makes our case desperate - surely an example should be made to deter others from doing the Like - where our Nets are is the way all Indians pafs - & The Canadians Imagine we might fall in the way of some of them when visiting them & They cut them away that we might change the situation more out of the way as all the Indians are expected to come to the House soon. all the ? of the Summer they would not allow us to set a Net near Old House because there fish was more plentiful & no Indians expected in to the Houses - now the Inds are expected they are determined to drive us where they would not allow us to be before - at 9 1/2 AM Mefs McTavish McGillivray & Fraser arrived in a Light Canoe & 8 men from Grand Portage - They are all going to the Athapescow Country - In the Evening McTavish & all the French officers had a long stay in Mr Blacks watch House - Dragged a long time for our 2 lost Nets being quite Calm but could not find them - Mr. Black calling out at Night as usual tho rather lower - altho he made our dogs bark much."
" Got this morning 32 Tickameg - The only good luck we have had since a little after our Boats departure down to CR. we are now under the necefsity of setting all our Nets without Buoys - & drag for Them when we visit them- which tears them a good deal but we have now no other alternative - None of the Canadians are suffered to come near us with any News, They are all strictly watched by Mr. Black - They will come & stand at our Gates but not one durst venture in & they threaten to make them loose their wages - This we had from one we accidently met in the Woods."
Sept. 1 1810
" In the nyht a Canadian lyht Canoe arrived here with a Master & at 8 AM 12 Loaded Canoes - Not a single Canadian is allowed to visit us to give us the least European or other news - 3 Irroqu'i? came into our House but soon went away by Blacks order - who pafsed thro our yard. Three Canadian Clerks came 3 several times to our Gates & stood some time but would or durst not come in for fear of their Masters. 5 Canoes came to the House remained here & went away again. They are all at Landmans Point 25 Loaded Canoes which is all that belongs to the Athapescow Quarter."
" Sunday. Every Sunday when the weather is fine it is the constant custom in the Interior to hoist the flagg. Mr Black & 3 other Clerks from their Watch House Door close to our Stockades fired 5 shots either at our flagg or vane, or on purpose if pofsible to cut the Line which hoists the flag - In the evening a Canadian & his wife with an Indian? came from the Green Lake. Early this morning all the Athapescow Loaded Canoes proceeded on their voyage."
" at 11 AM all the Canadian Gentlemen for the Athapescow department Embarked in 3 Canoes - Took our 2 Nets up at the point. one end of one of them had been moved more than 60 yards & with difficulty the Men found it."
" At 6 1/2 PM Mr John McDonnel my late neighbour & Mr Stewart arrived in a light Canoe from the Grand Portage. They are to Winter at the lesser Slave Lake in the place of John McGillivray - Not a single Canadian is permitted to come near us at the House - we only converse now & then with one we find in the Woods & they even are afraid to tell us by their Masters directions where they pafsed our Boats coming here from Churchill Factory - who they must have pafsed on the road - 2 Canoes of Jepowyans went from the French house suppose they must have came in the nyht."
" at 2 PM 4 Canoes Loaded arrived at the french House from the Grand Portage - They go up to Lesser Slave Lake - They are putting in order 2 more in order to lighten the rest going up Beaver River which is very shoal towards the upper part."
" In the Evening the free Canadian wife & son pafsed our House in a Canoe for berries- Mr Black immediately went after them & forced them to return Directly - They are particularly afraid of our speaking to any body & keep all they can out of our way. I sincerely hope they have taken our Pilot from the Boats either going down or returning - as only David Garsons Woman knows any thing of the road that is in company. at 7 PM 7 Canoes for Lesser Slave Lake embarked with Mefs McDonnell & Stewart & 27 men."
" I am & has been these Days past very badly with a severe pain in my right shoulder - Set the 2 Men to cut firewood for winters use. 4 Canoes of Southern & 4 of Northern Indians went to the Canadian House."
" I am rather better"
" Killed 2 Ducks near the house our men heard the Shots & ran home from the Woods, thinking the Canadians were shooting me - we expect every bad thing from them as they tell us we have no right to Trade in This Country - In the Evening the 4 Canoes of Southern Indians went away & our Men at the Nets spoke to them but being still in sight of the Canadian house They were afraid to make our people any reply Tho nearly a Mile from it - at 11 AM a Canadian man & Woman & one Indian came down from Green Lake with a large Canoe loaded with meat - at 11 1/2 PM Mr Duncan Campbell & 6 men came in a large Canoe from the Grand Portage. Mr. Black is now badly so that we are allowed to rest at night."
" One Canoe of Jepowyans went to the Canadian House - Our 2 Men besides examining the Nets morning & evening - cuts firewood- The Woman daily employed keeping them in order."
" Andrew Kirknefs told Joseph Heywood that the Canadians who came here 12th Inst. pafsed our men at the Knee Lake & joyful to learn they are all safe - after the great dread and anxcity we have had for fear of the Canadians doing them some hidden mischief or taking away their Pilots? . one Canoe went to the French Ho. of Indians."
" at 2 1/2 PM Cartier the French Guide & 5 canoes arrived here"
" at 6 AM we had the very agreeable pleasure of seeing our 2 Boats & 11 Men return safe from C.R.. They have brot very little Goods with them, principally necefsaries. When our Men pafsed the Frog Portage McTavish frightened our pilot away & it was two Days detention to them before They got her again - without her our Men could not have come forwards - These Canadians now stand at nothing however much against reason & Justice."
" Packed up every thing ready to send to the Green Lake where Mr Sutherland has built this Summer. I wished D. Garson to take charge of a House at Whitefish Lake where Jepowyans are to winter but he absolutely refused as he said that they were afraid to visit our House last winter at Methy Lake were Mr Sutherland ? wintered & would now be still more so as being ? ? Nothing can be got from these Indians but by main strength with the Canadians which by their superior number we have no chance with. with the principals they set upon. Yesterday Mr Blacks things were carried away from the Watch House here to their own house. he is very badly. Burrasa & his wife remain in it - Yesterday 2 Canoes of Canadians 9 Men & 2 women went away for Green Lake."
HBC men at Ile a La Crosse in Sept. 1810 (lists written in the margin)
"Men at Green Lake"
"Mr. R. Sutherland
" Sent away at 7 1/2 PM last night Joseph Heywood and Wm Sinclair in a small Canoe privately toward Egg Lake to be in the way of Indians coming towards the House? to endeavour to get something from them - at 8 1/2 PM our 2 Men returned having seen nobody - at 11 AM David Garson & 5 Men went for Green Lake with Trading Goods etc in one Boat. On Sunday Andrew Kirknefs took away privately a Dog belonging to Wm Flett one of our Men here last winter - but now remains in the lower Country - The men helving their axes ready to cut our Winters firewood before the frost sets in - Andrew Flett took our Nets to repair & attend all winter - my woman having kept ? in order ever since Andrew Kirknefs ran away"
" Finished plastering the walls of our Dwelling House. Andrew Flett our Net man saw 2 Jepowyans beyond the point but they were afraid to speak to him or give him any Meat they had tho out of syht of the House. but being near it was so very much afraid of being seen by the Canadians near any of us - what a Melancholy thing that all the Indians should be so very much intimidated by the Canadians to the utter hurt of the Hudsons Bay Companys Interest - we being so few in Comparison of our rascally opponents we have no chance - altho the Indians much wishes to Trade with us could we be able to protect them from the Ill treatment of the Canadians"
" at 10 AM Mr Robert Henry who has been Master here all summer Embarked in one? Canoe & 6 men - he is to Winter at the Athapescow Lake House along with Mr McTavish - Men (Canadians) now to winter here are Mr John Duncan Campbell, Mr Ogden, Mr Black, both Clerks & Cartier the Old guide who has been Master of a Trading House many Years, besides 22 Common Men - making 26 in all against our 8 - one Canoe of Jepowyans went to the French House."
" In the Evening 9 Canoes of Indians went to the French House - a Canoe of Canadians from their House went to meet them when they came in syht"
" Canadians watching closely at their watch House here to prevent any Indians coming or our going away privately to meet them. at 9 AM 6 more Canoes of Jepowyans went to the French House. Immediately on their arrival They are all shut up within their Stockades and not one allowed to go out but a Canadian accompanies him that none myht get to our House. altho several of them had Credits from us last Spring. These are the most distrefsing & uneasy times I have ever experienced in the Country on account of such conduct in the Canadians not allowing a Single Native to visit us."
" all the Indians went away. I crofsed over the point & spoke to 3 Men. they say that they all very much wished to come over to our house but were afraid of the Canadians beating them. They are going to hunt beyond Swan Lake & Clear Water river. two days ago a Canoe with 4 Canadians went away & returned this day with it full of Dry provisions. The 24th in the Evening sent away 2 Men to be in the road of Indians coming to the house with Trading Goods to Trade any thing they could."
" at Dark our 2 Men returned having seen no Indians."
" 5 Canoes of Jepowyans went away towards the Athapescow. In the Evening sent away 2 Men in a small Canoe slyly in the Dark as usual to be in the road of Indians as we think several are yet uncome in - 4 Canoes of Crees or Southern Indians & 1 Northern went to the French House."
" Just before Sun set Daze a Canadian half breed fired a Shot at Charley which struck the water not 2 yards from him, Wm. Houry saw it also - The Boy Charley is now very ? in speaking to an Indian he should happen to meet with, that they do every thing to frighten him - if they really mean no more than frightening. Several Canoes of Indians went away but not a single one allowed to come to our House."
Oct 4 1810
" Sent over the Boy Charley & Wm Houry to ask Mr Campbell about the shot last night - he as might be expected of him knew nothing about the shot- Daze said that he did not know it was loaded with Ball - 14 Canoes of Jepowyans went to French House and at 8 PM our 2 Men returned not having seen any body as they said of Those now arrived - but only those who went away Lately - from when they Traded a few trifles of Dry provisions & some Snow shoe netting - The Indians are all much exasperated against the Canadians for not allowing them to visit us as they are threatened to be hung if they should have any Dealings with us."
" all the Indians went away & 3 Canadians were fixed at the point to keep them from speaking to our fisherman who was there at his Nets - He offered them fish but the Canadians would not suffer them to take any or speak to our Man."
" 4 Canoes of Jepowyans went to French House & 2 returned accompanied with a Canadian. at 5 1/2 PM the other 2 Canoes of Jepowyans returned & at the same time our 2 fishing Canoes came around? the point with 2 men each. being at the Nets The Canadians supposing one to be an Indian Canoe coming here Mr Black & ogden immediately came over to our Gates & stood there - I suppose that if it had been an Indian they would have endeavoured to take every thing from him - I immediately sent away Joseph Heywood & Wm Sinclair in a small Canoe to the 2 Canoes just gone away to learn where they are to winter - Immediately the 2 Clerks returned & sent of 2 men in a Canoe in pursuit of our Men as hard as they could Paddle - our Men came up nearly with the Indians & offered them some Tobacco & asked them where they were to Hunt all winter, but they were afraid either to take the Tobacco or even return an Answer as the Canadians were in syht coming fast up."
" at Sun rise this morning 13 Canadians came over here with axes & cut down all the willows in front of our House That there cannot be a pofsibility of an Ind coming Sly ly to us. they even came to our Gates & cut down the Poles we have for Drying our fishing Nets on - & one of the Men cut one of our Corner Stockades at the Garden two or three strokes with an ax. They seem & even tells us that they are absolutely determined to Drive usall away from this Quarter where the furs are plentiful & of the Best Kind."
" 5 Canoes of Those who went away lately came to the French House but did not take any thing out. I believe they are some of them ill with the disorder brot now in by the Canadians same as 1808 when numbers of the Natives Died. Mr Black came to our East or front Gates & staired hard over them several times - The Inds went away that came in the morning"
" Some Indians went away from the French House last night - Sent Charley & Joseph Heywood in a Canoe This morning after to speak to them but they returned, could not find them - just on their return They were overtaken by 2 Canadians who had been sent after them. They all came back together - In the evening put 6 Stockades further out at the end of those we set in July. The water in the Lake having since then fallen much - Mr Black & Campbell pafsed that way 2 Days ago. Just when we had finished putting them up Mr Black & Ogden went over there & the Latter came into our Garden & walked thro it & over the Stockades near their Watch house - previous to this Mr Campbell was in the Watch house & when he thought we had near finished them he sent a Man from the Watch house to fetch Mr Black & Ogden. They remained at our Front Gates near 10 minutes armed with Pistles & Daggers - when Ogden was in our Garden Campbell called out ' have you got your Hanger'."
" very heavy snow all day - gave the Men all their winter Shoes & Mittens"
Oct. 14 1810
" In the night or early this morning some of the Canadians had maliciously sawn in two the ribband which supports the Stockades put up on Friday & thrown 10 Stockades down into the Lake being 4 more than we had put up- In the afternoon found that the Canadians had taken away 3 piles of cut firewood - wrote over another Note concerning it - Campbell told our Man that we must not again put up the Stockades just cut down"
" one of our Men found that the Canadians had taken away another pile of our cut firewood - Set 4 Men at work to put up the Stockades cut down by the Canadians"
Oct. 19 1810
" Mr. Black & ogden come close to our Launch where we take our fish ashore at night- which is very insulting as they say nothing but comes in a very Bravado manner."
" Mr Black & Ogden daily in the Evening, come to where we land our fish - this day they came up to our Gates & stood there upwards of 10 minutes waiting our Fisherman coming ashore. They had their Daggers on - I don't know why they come over every night when our fisherman returns from the Nets. in the Day they were both over & remained about our front Gates with a gun each"
Oct. 24 1810
" Mr. Black & ogden walked acrofs Our Yard in at the West & out at the East Gate armed. The latter carrying a chair the other opened our oven door & looked in- This is done to insult & harras us as everything They can imagine hurting to our feelings They do- knowing that the orkneymen are so timorous That they will allow Themselves to be imposed on in any manner- one alone against such numbers can do nothing."
Oct. 25 1810
" Mr. Black & ogden came to our Gates this morning & in the Evening they both came into our Yard at the East Gates to pafs thro it- Mr. Black with a loaded Gun & 2 Pistols & Ogden with his Dagger which they seldom carry but when They mean to insult us- I met them in the Yard & asked Mr. Black the reason why they pafsed thro our Yard, a thing never done before- till lately- he said he would make a common practice on account of our putting down the Stockades- I told them to return the same way they came & that they should not pafs thro our yard in the Insulting Manner They intended- I told one of our men to shut the West Gates- which was at last done- they perservered in pafsing when I struck Mr. Black with a stick two or 3 times- Ogden immediately drew his Dagger & cut 2 large holes in the side & back of my Coat & pricked my body but no further- Mr. Black then took up part of the stick I had broken over him & struck me on the Thumb close at the upper end of the Nail & smashed it to pieces- Ogden also struck me twice with a stick- All our men looking on the whole time without giving me any assistance- Mr. Black & ogden then followed me into my room with their Guns & Dagger & abused me very much whilst my Thumb was drefsing- They then went & opened the West Gate & went away saying that we all should lead a very miserable & unhappy winter."
Oct. 26 1810
" Got no sleep with the pain in my Broken Thumb it being made quite flatt & obliged to have it in a sling that arm being the left. Mr Black & Ogden came & stood at our East Gates this morning & between 12 & 1 oClock They came again all well armed with 3 Canadians & cut down 4 Stockades we had put up in the Summer & threw them into the Lake - Myself & Andrew Flett the only man home went & told them at their peril not to cut them down. They replied they did not care a Dam for the Hudson Bay Company - Mr Campbell stood looking on near his own House - The Old NW Company for several years during the opposition enclosed both sides the front of their House with Stockades down far into the Lake"
" Mr Campbell & Black came near our East Gates stood some time & returned & in the Evening Black & Ogden came opposite our Gates where our fish are brought ashore. Snow nearly all gone & few Ducks are to be seen - The men daily employed cutting our winters Stock of Firewood"
" Mr Ogden pafsed close by our front Gate & then the Gap they cut in our Stockades - We have now cut 161 chords of firewood"
" Ice set in far from the Shore - 2 Men hawling home firewood with 5 Dogs - they have nearly 1/2 mile to fetch it."
" Took up 2 Nets from under the Ice, one still down - also set 2 Nets under the Ice at the Old House Quarter & as our Men came home a Canadian came from their House & told us to take them up again without his exactly knowing were they were set"
Nov. 2 1810
" A Canadian told us to take up our Nets or They would cut them to pieces - They set 2 Nets near them where they had none before"
" Took up our 2 Nets we set under the Ice first & Mr Campbell having no twine to line a net with sent over after what has lately pafsed - & as they are quite destitute of that article let them have wherewith to do one Net being 5 1/2 Cuts of Coarse Twine."
" Obliged to take 2 more of our Nets up set under the Ice as one of them was entangled with a french one they set too near us - they impose upon us in every manner they can."
" Setting more nets we now have 6 Down."
" at 11 AM yersterday the Indian Man returned in Company with one Canadian & 3 Dogs in an? Slegh - at Noon This Day sent Joseph Heywood & William Sinclair after the Track of the Indian - gave them 20 lbs Pemmican for Provisions as we don't know where they are Tenting - They took 1 1/2 yds Cloth & 1 fm Tobacco - They are sent purposely to know what Indians are there & to tell them to lay something by for us in the Track we go down to the Factory in the Spring - as the Canadians will not allow a Single Native to visit us - nor even any of their own People Men or Women. our only hope is by sending to the Indian Tents in Winter - at 3 PM the Canadian Man who accompanied the Indian yesterday returned with a Slegh of meat & a Tent who our 2 Men are gone in search of - An hour after Mr Black Poulet & Chartier with a Dog & Slegh - went the way our men are - I suppose gone after them."
" Between 12 & 1 oClock This morning our 2 Men came home - They had put up about 12 Miles from the House, got their supper & lain down to sleep - in order to pursue their Journey tomorrow forwards - to find out the Indians - where soon after Mr Black & The 2 Canadians came up the Strongest & greatest Blackguards at their House - Mr Black told our Men to get up immediately & return back with them to the House, or that they would pofsitively break their Legs - he called out where was the Brandy as his Men wanted a Dram - They told him they had none - he examined every thing they had & took from them their 2 Guns one of which he fired off - The Flint had fallen out of the other & took & tyed them upon Their own Slegh - & drove our 2 Men home before them & threatened them in the most awful & horrid manner, That if any of us went without our Doors after an Indian they most certainly would break their legs - Mr Black went in search of Tracks this morning & came into my room on his return & abused & said every bad thing he could, That if I sent a Man after any Indians whatever This winter he would kill me - he then went into The Mens House & told them all that if any of them went after an Indian he would with The Canadians break their Legs - & that Mr Campbell had given these orders - I told the same two Men to go again after the Indians to see - but they both absolutely refused - Andrew Flett fell down on the Ice this morning & hurt his hip - he besides the other 2 above are the only men here who can speak to an Indian - So this unprecedented Conduct of the Canadians will prevent our getting any Skins from the Indians - Mr Black most solemnly swears that the Hudson Bay company shall not get a single Skin at the Isle a la Crofse - & that this is the resolve of their Company - They are particularly exasperated against me as I am the only Person in our Concern who knew? all their Northern Parts?- The two Guns they took from our Men the Canadians still keep - nor shall we receive them if offered - one of the Guns belonged to myself & the other to Wm Sinclair who I have promised to pay him for out of my own pocket if the Chief at the Factory does not make him an equivalent on the Companies account - 20 Shillings is what the Man says it cost him - all our people are now very much frightened, that they are even afraid to stir about - the Canadians being near 4 to one of us - & the evil principals they act upon
" I told Mr Black when in my room that after Breakfast I should send away again the 2 Men - he & Ogden came to their Watch House Here armed with Pistols & Daggers to Murder the Men if they went away - they remained there a long while - but none of our Men would go - so that we can expect nothing. The 2 Canadians in Company with Mr Black said nothing to our Men except Chartier who said that they had orders from Mr Campbell to give them? a very severe beating & to break their Legs if our Men perservered in going on - Black & Ogden after waiting a good while in their Little House & not knowing whether or not our Men was away again - They came into our Mens house to see all were at home - I used every persuasive? word to induce our Men to go again after the Indians & they would not listen - I also Insisted on their going but with the same effect - Black & Ogden came in Armed with their Daggers & Pistols but said nothing about the Indians as they saw every body home - we are in a situation that we cannot benefit the company the least & we all pafs a most miserable life - our 2 Men having every thing to Carry? in their Back, Provisions, Bedding etc. could not well keep up with Mr Black & the 2 Canadians. he frequently called out & abused our Men That they did go no faster"
"Between twelve & one oClock this morning Mr Black fired 6 shots close to our House & hallowed three times & alarmed every one in the house - Mr Black this morning as soon as he could well see very closely examining the Tracks to see if any of our Men had gone away in the night - Asked Andrew Flett if he would be able to go to the Indians but he said that he was really afraid of his life to go after the much awful threatening from Black - ? all the rest of the Men are the same - A Canadian from the Watch House went in to our Mens house purposely to see if all our Men were home - he told our Men to go over for the 2 Guns they forcibly took from our Men but I would not allow them - Andrew Flett told me that when Mr Black had broke my thumb when I went into the house, thinking perhaps I was gone for some weapon - he stood in our door with his Gun ready cocked & he said that he would shoot me in the House if I offered to resist."
" In the afternoon Mr Black& Ogden came into our Mens house armed with Daggers & Pistols then came into my room & told me to take up our Nets. They being too near theirs, or else they would cut them to pieces - I told them it was the Custom of the Canadians which they well know that a Nets length distant (60fm) was always allowed & that if our Nets were within that distance we would take them up - Sent three men away to measure the distance between their Nets & ours and found 64 fathoms which is more than the allowed distance or the length of a Net - however as they myht not have the least reason on our part of any encroachment we took up 3 & put down 2 more in a new place nearly 3/4 mile from where they stood. our other 3 Nets are above 2 Net lengths from any of the French Nets - They wish to starve us - They tell us they can do it by taking up or Destroying our Nets & also prevent us from having any firewood - Mr Black told Joseph Heywood to go over to their House & fetch the Guns & he would not which vexed him - our fine Bitch is now very full of Pups Black kicked her in the Belly very hard on purpose to kill them. he stands at nothing. he told our Men that Law & Justice he did not mind - so many bad actions they have done to us & no notice being taken of it in England still further encourages them to ? deeper in every unjustifiable action. at 9 1/2 PM Mr Black & Ogden were at our East Gates calling out very loud to disturb us"
" Thursday- My Thumb in a mending way - Last Thursday festered much - still obliged to carry the arm always in a sling since the accident - Mr Black & a Canadian minutely examining all the Tracks about to know if Any had lately pafsed."
" A Canadian Man & Boy with 4 Dogs & a Slegh came to the French House. we suppose from the Green Lake - Took my arm out of the sling altho very far from being healed - nor can? I ever expect it will be thoroughly well again like the other Thumb."
" Learnt from a Canadian Woman that Mr Black is gone to Green Lake on Friday? last to act there as he has here to keep Indians from coming to our Houses"
" Only 3 Nets now down - we have had before always 6 down since the beginning of Last Month. We have in Stock about 3600 Tickameg, besides some few Perch & Pike & Succers."
" Sent away Wm Sinclair & Wm Houry to Green Lake with 3 Dogs & a Slegh - to wait there till our European Letter come there from the Saskatchewan River that we soon expect"
Dec. 19 1810
" Thermometer -51 out Doors -27 in my bed place near the fire & +38 in our Cellar."
" At 7PM Wm Sinclair & Wm Houry returned from Green Lake with my Letters from England for these last 2 years - also sundry Letters from my Country Correspondents. They were 18 Days from Hudson House to Green Lake owing to the unaquaintednefs of the Pilot - Mr Sutherland expected down here about next Sunday - our Men brot from him 20 lbs beat meat 30 lbs Fatt & 20 lbs Dry meat"
" 2 Canadians arrived here with the Packet from Deers? Lake & Rapid? river."
" Sunday at 6 PM Mr Sutherland came here from Green Lake with Wm Findley - They have been 5 Days coming down - Mr Black & Poulet accompanied them. no Indians of consequence have been in since Summer. he traded 29th Aug upwards of 1200 lbs of Dry provisions. that when the Canadians came up in the fall they pitched a Tent close to his House for the exprefs purpose of keeping any Indians from bringing any thing to his House. keeping a Watch in it Nyht & Day - so the Canadians seem determined thro all these Nothern Parts to carry & have every thing by Main force as they are much more numerous than us. Oh how the Indians wishes to see us able to protect them from the Canadians that they could trade ? with us. In the Summer the Canadians at Green Lake were no more numerous than ourselves, seeing this was the reason of their Trading so much Provisions as they always get much more good from us for the same article than the Canadians will give them"
Jan. 3 1811
" Mr Black & Ogden came over here quite unexpectedly (in a civil manner) with a verbal mefsage from Mr Campbell saying if we would send one man to the Saskatchewan River with Letters he would send another in Company & also furnish a Guide. as we wish to send these I accepted the offer. he sent word to let him have a Small Kettle for his Mans Journey there & he would give me the Value I charged for it in Beaver Skins - Let him have one No. 12 size"
" at 7 1/2 AM Mr Sutherland returned to his House at Green Lake with Wm Findley. Andrew Flett accompanied them, he is the person to go acrofs land to the Saskatchewan River - Two men from the Canadian House accompanied our Men to Green Lake one of which is going acrofs with him. Wrote to Mr Bird the following letter & hid it sewed up in the Inside of the Mans Waistcoat between the lining & outside - That the Canadians myht not find it as we cannot trust them - and wrote a few lines & gave him that was to be produced in case they searched him or demanded the Letter.
"Isle a la Crofse
January 8 1811
" ? Your letter from Cumberland House of June last concerning your supplying us here in Pimmican etc. came to hand in September - and as the cause for a similar repitition seems no longer to exist I shall forbear dwelling on the contents of it
" The Packet containing our European Letters for the last two years was brot safe here & received on Christmas eve from Mr Pruden at Hudson House
" As we are directed to relinquish this place in the spring as nothing can be done - Ten bags of Pimmican is all that will necefsary for you to send over land to Cold Lake for us - we shall have people there to receive it 10th May, who will at the same time take up for your Department 16 or 18 assorted pieces of Trading Goods of 80 lbs each - besides 5 men who are to go down to YF by way of Cumberland House according to Mr Aulds desire
wishing you good trade in your Quarter & I am Sir your humble servt
" Burassah a Canadian who lives in the Watch House here came into our House to get some advice & medicines as he has a bad swelling in his Knee - supplied him with both - This Man accompanied our Men up Beaver River last May & gave them several seasonable supplies of provisions? which Deserves something - he now told me that the Packet brot Letters from Deers Lake & Rapid River just after Christmas had 3 European Letters for Mr Campbell That he had brot from his Friends in Europe & sent up to Deers Lake by our People which rather surprizes me that Mr Auld should do any thing of the kind - Our Men gone to the Green Lake have 6 Dogs & 3 Sleghs - one to be left with Mr Bird at the Saskatchewan . The Pimmican that we was to have sent up for up to the Cold Lake last fall - luckely judging? right - we saved a long Journey as none were sent there for us as we understand it was not to send?"
" Mr Black pafsed close by our Front Gates in his Snowshoes."
" These many weeks past we have had almost daily one or two men Hunting Partridges or Snaring rabbits & This Day Mr Black followed James Isbister hunting & asked him if any more were with him he ran? ? to the Lake edge? to see if any Indians were coming supposing our Men was in search of Indians. two Canadians came into our Mens House to see that all were home - 3 Partridges"
Jan. 17 1811
" Mr Black & Ogden after our Men hunting Partridges we cannot now stir from our House about any thing but they follow us"
" Mr Black & Ogden met James Isbister who was out hunting Partridges and asked him what he was seeking - he told them he was hunting Partridge - Mr Black told him he must not nor any one else stir from our House as we kept them constantly running after us & he told him that if he found him again on such an errand? he would do so & so with him threatening. - Things are come to a fine pafs when we cannot be allowed to stir about any thing outdoors - & calls aloud for a compleat stop being put to such conduct of the Canadians"
" Sent James Isbister again on Partridge Hunting. he is to examine & see the Tracks & Perhaps fall in with some Indians & get some Skins from them - this is the real cause of his being with others kept [from] stirring? about. - Mr. Black & ogden lay by waiting him at Landmans point till he pafsed there- when he came there they both started up & Mr. Black went to our Man & knocked him Down by striking him in the face - he then jumped & trampled on his Gun down into the snow either to break it or to get it wet to prevent it from going off & Mr Black told him if he ever caught him again from the House he would break his arm - the man came home crying & told as above - sent a note over to Campbell about it but as usual got no satisfactory answer - only promising fine things as usual - without either meaning or performing them"
" at 9 1/2 AM Mr Black came out at the Bay & walked strayht up to our East Gates where I was standing & John Loutit & Wm Houry near. he asked me why I had sent over the Note to Mr Campbell yesterday - he said he would do as he chose for any Man & that we should not be allowed to send any man from the House but what should be greatly beat & maimed that death should be preferable to the lingering existance they should have - Wrote over a Note to Campbell to learn whether that was his orders Mr Black had just told us - & desiring him to send me an answer by the Bearer of mine, Wm Houry - he told him he would send his answer over sometime in the day - a little after Mefs Ogden & Cartier came over which I put immediately into writing Campbells answer as delivered by them and sent over to him that he myght be able to plead ignorance of or Deny what he had told them to tell me. I sent it over by John Loutit who delivered it into Mr Campbells own hand - The import of what Mr Ogden told me was that we would be allowed safely to send our Men about or hunting etc. provided I would consent that they should not interfere with any Indians they myht meet with. This I would not consent to - & he further said that Campbells orders were that he should give positive orders to all his Men that our Men should be beaten & maimed if they had any dealings with Indians or even went on hunting Partridges or Snaring rabbits should have their arms & legs broken - so that now we cannot safely send our Men from the House on hunting Partridges or snare rabbits - all our Men were present when Mr Ogden delivered Mr Campbells message"
" at 10 oClock last night Mr Black & Ogden came to our house when we were all in bed. sometime before they went behind our Dwelling house till they came opposite my window & fired 4 shots & hallowed loud several times & Mr Black called out ' The Honorable Hudson Bay Company' - 'Gapeau the Hudson Bay Company'. Then sang very loud part of an Indian Song then returned by the back of the House & fired two shots more & hallowed & again called out ' The Honorable Hudson Bay Company ' - they then pafsed to the West Gates beat hard upon it & banged & struck Their Daggers deep into it in five places - calling out & sometimes singing an Indian song. they then fired four shots more and shook out some plastering in the Mens house. Wm Sinclair thought they fired Balls - They said a great deal more & that they had the law in their own hands & that the Isle a la Crofse Law was what they should be ruled by & calling us to come out. we had all been in bed 2 Hours before & fast asleep. our dogs barking ? when they came awakened us - In consequence of the threats Mr Campbell told yesterday & the usage James Isbister received from Mr Black when out? hunting Partridges on Saturday the men are afraid to go out any where near where Indians tracks are - only one Man Joseph Heywood at his Rabbit Snares quite out of the way of any Indians
Jan. 22 1811
" Between 11 & 12 OClock at night Mr. Black & ogden came to our House and abused & threatened us all in the most awful manner- that they had taken up all our Rabbit snares That we should not be permitted to get any more Rabbits or Partridges & that should any of our Men go to the snares or a Distance from the House on any pretense whatever Their shall be bloody work, & that the Bull Dogs (meaning the Blackguard Canadians) had been chained all winter but was now let loose- that if we did not keep within doors we should not eat any more fresh fish This winter, & that if I sent any man to Campbell with a note of what they had now said They would burn him alive. with a great deal more of very abusive & insulting Language - This morning ? Joseph Heywood to go to his Snares as usual he said as well as all the rest of the men that by the atrocities of the Canadians they have experienced this Winter & last Summer & the very terrifying Language held last nyht That they were absolutely afraid of Their Lives to stir from the House & would not go. so that we are all now reduced to the melancholy necefsity of being confined within our works like a besieged place - only our nets to visit which are on the open Lake in full view of the Canadian House & not 1 1/2 miles from it"
" sometime in the nyht some of the Canadians took up our 2 new nets - one our men thinks they carried ? ? & the other is cut to pieces - The buoy lines were also cut - they seem determined to starve us as they will not allow an Indian to come to us with any thing. & not? allow us to look after a Rabbit or Partridge or go in search of Indians. Wrote a note to Campbell about it & sent it by the boy Charley as all our men were afraid to carry it. Campbell answered as usual that he knew nothing about it - he always evades the question in this manner - they came with me into our yard. They ? in all & took out a Loaded pistol each. I called the men to assist me to turn them out of our yard but all were afraid to render the least assistance altho these days past there were all determined if they came into our yard again & give them a good drubbing & put them out not expecting them again - when come to the push all their former boastings were nothing - Mr Black very much wishes me to sign an agreement with Mr Campbell that they would allow us to go on hunting Partridges, Rabbits etc. provided I would agree not to have any dealings with Indians whatever. This I told him I would never consent to let the consequences turn out ever so bad of my refusing. They both came into my room & Mr Black very much wished to pick a quarrel with me by saying very offensive things concerning the Company so distrefsing to hear. we cannot get? rest? Day or Nyht for them - They are absolutelty bent on driving us from this place as every man of ours here say they would? not remain here again for any thing whatever as they were constantly afraid of their Lives"
" We only had 2 Nets down which the Canadians has cut away. sent 2 men to drag & examine well? for one of our nets yesterday - Thinking they perhaps myht have only cut it loose at both ends & sunk down to the bottom but they returned without finding it - There are five nets lost or Destroyed of ours since Mr Black came here - Burrassas wife who lives in the watch House told my woman yesterday that about midnight Mr Black came into the Little house & told her husband to go with him - he asked where & Mr Black told him but he replied that he would not go & do such an infamous action as the Nets were what we had soley to depend on for our Living - on his refusal Black threatened him to loose all his wages. he ? & would not go so we suppose that it was Black himself or very likely Ogden along with him who have destroyed our 2 only nets standing"
" Mr Black & Ogden came into our yard - looked at the thermometer and went away again without saying any thing - quite in a hasty manner - I asked all our men again if any one would assist me to put them out if they came in again but not one had the courage to say yes. They are all so much afraid after the great threatening & the bad actions we have experienced"
" sent 4 men to put down 2 old Nets in the same place the others were cut from - I have waited these 3 days expecting Campbell would send word whether or not we myht venture to set them as I requested but received no answer"
" In the afternoon Wm Cragie? & Wm Lesly came here from the Green Lake to remain here as they are catching very few fish there - no Barren ground Indians have been here from the Barren ground - the snow being deep for Horses - only the Beaver river Indians have been at the House but not a single one durst venture to trade or go into ours by the Canadians. they are nearly acting in the same high & arbitrary manner there as at this place. They every day several times walk close around our house there to examine for Tracks. a Canadian Man accompanied our 2 men down here from Green Lake as they will not suffer us to stir about without some accompanying us"
" This morning some Canadians went to Green Lake"
Feb. 6 1811
" Found the net we lost this day fortnight - all cut in about 20 pieces with the fish in it rotten that was caught before it was cut away - with the Floats & stones tyed to it - it seems that they had taken it up, cut it to pieces & put it down the hole in a lump and when the fish rotted it floated a little & the stone & our other net in the same hole caught it & brot it up to the surface - many of the pieces of the net is not 2 feet long - The Canadians erected a Tent near their Watch House"
" Two Canadians with 2 Sleges & 3 dogs each went to the French House - suppose they either came from Green Lake or Rapid River"
" Finished hauling the last of our Dry & Green firewood home - Two Indians & one Canadian went to the French House"
" Counted out 3000 Tickameg ready to lay up in the Snow in the Shed to preserve when warm weather comes to use in the Spring when few are to be caught"
" Mr Black walked thro our yard this morning with his Snow shoes on. He & Ogden walked thro in the afternoon looking at the Thermometer both times . finished counting all our fish 4940 in all"
" Sent two men over into the woods to saw ? boards. Mr Black attends them all the while till they came home he supposing that they were in the way of Indians coming"
" At noon Andrew Flett & a Canadian arrived here with Letters from the Saskatchewan River. The Indians there I am sorry to hear are hunting very little & no provisions in the House. never so scarce a Ind? in that river. David Thompson 8 men & 1 Iroquois ? ? their Settlement in the Rocky Mountain - The Indians last fall drive all the Canadians back again when they were so high up with their Canoes at the Eastern edge of the Mountain. They are gone to endeavour to find a road by the head of the Athapescow River to the North of where the Muddy river Indians reside
" Received the following letter from Mr Bird
Edmonton House 1st Feby 1811
Your Man arrived here 27th Inst, & delivered me your letter safe. Your demand of Pimmican is certainly very moderate. yet situated as I am without a pound in my pofsefsion and without hopes of being able to procure any Quantity of consequence hereafter I cannot presume to promise that it shall be sent to you. If pofsible however you shall be supplied. Our Indians all without exception have made such poor hunts that there cannot be a pofsibility of our being short of Trading Goods in sending up or with? therefore the Pieces? you mention you may consult your? own concience only? Want of provisions will oblige us to leave this as early as the Season will permit. The sooner therefore Your men are at the Cold Lake the better
I am Sir
your humble Servant
" Mr Campbell & Black came here & told me that they had received a letter syned Mr Thomas & Auld Directed to the NW Proprietors forgiving all that had pafsed? but I believe there is a great stock accumulated since it was written to justify proceeding against them with the utmost severity - as by so frequently pafsing over them they are thoroughly of the opinion that no steps will be taken against them to compel them to act uprightly - They are strongest in numbers & hold? what they pride themselves in - In the Evening the Canadians left their watch house - They are continually walking round our House to examine for Tracks near? the Great House so there is little reason for them to remain longer in it at present. a Canadian man & boy went to the Green Lake. The Muddy River Indians have massacred an American officer & 8 Men near the ? of the Missouri River last fall & scalped the whole - brot to the Canadian House in the Saskatchewan River 110 Trenton Bank Notes of Three Dollars each which the Canadian Master got from them for very little ? Canadian Clerk ? McDonald? in Company with about 30 flat? head? Indians fell in with a war party of Muddy River Indians last Summer in the Rocky Mountains - The flat heads retreated when they first saw the Enemy to a creek with steep banks where they lay till the others came up - when suddenly all rising up fired & killed 15 Muddy river Ind.? only one fell? of the flat heads - When they who survived? ? a very precipitate retreat - & them learning that a Canadian were in company with the Flat heads - was the Cause of this Tribe of Indians driving back the Canadians last fall - They are particularly objectionable against ? the Canadians or even us from going to trade with those distant Tribes ? beyond the Rocky Mountains - as they receive from us Guns Arms & Ammunition which makes them bolder & more Dangerous to attack them when formerly when they had only Bows & Arrows & they are also much against us from even Trading with them in any necefsary Articles - as they formerly used to Trade with them at vast profits & then bring those Skins & trade with us. receiving above 12 times the value for the same Article from us than what they sold it for to the Distant Tribes - & by our going into those parts we cut off the great profits they always made."
Feb. 21 1811
" In the afternoon 2 Jepowyans came in sight- Immediately 3 Canadians ran to meet them, to take any thing they had- one we saw carrying a hatchet as a weapon- 2 Escorted the 2 Indians to their House & the other went the way they came, to see if any others are coming that way, or whether they had hidden any thing- Mr. Black came to the Watch House then went along the shore & returned- Afterwards he & another man went thro the Wood Track within, perhaps expecting some might be coming sly ly thro the woods to our House- but there is very little chance of that as they watch us so constant & close. none can escape them."
" Some of the Canadians remained in their Watch house all night - Then went home at day light. Mr Black & others there ? all the Tracks in every direction to see but none had? either come in ? since yesterday"
" At Day lyht Mr Black & 5 Canadians in company with the 2 Indians went away towards the Athapescow with 5 Sleges & 3 Dogs each"
" Packed up 5 bundles of Trading Goods to send to Mr Bird as we are directed to leave this totally in the Spring. and as the goods are so high up the country it would be a great pity to carry them down again"
" Two men made their Sleges ready & loaded each with Trading Goods of various descriptions to Ten Pieces of 80 lbs each. Sent also the Boat Sail & covering?"
" at 6 AM our Men started for Green Lake with what they loaded with yesterday - These Goods are to remain there till the river opens of Ice - when this with all that Mr Sutherland has will be sent together with our dogs to the Cold Lake when we go for Pimmican - Poulet since Mr Black has gone away to ? constantly going about looking about the Tracks - to see if one? either goes one way or another - An hour after our men went away a Canadian Man with an Empty Slege & three Dogs was dispatched after our men to accompany them wherever they go - They serve us thus in Summer. its no consequence whatever way or in what businefs soever we are about they are sure to be near us generally & a little ahead to get any thing Inds has that are in the Road."
March 1 1811
" Spoke to a Canadian woman, she says that 3 southern Indians came to their House this morning Starving & for some fish. They are Tenting upper end Canoe river where Their Canoes were ? up last Fall & going to remain there till open water - the French have got from them only about 70 Skins this Winter."
" at 9 AM Mr Black & the 5 Canadians came back from Chiooyahs? Tents loaded with provisions & furs"
" Gave Burrasah a half Canadian 1 pint Gunpowder 4 lbs of Ball & Shot 6 Flints 1 pint Salt & 2 Tobacco pipes on account of his very civil treatment to our Men when they went up Beaver river in the spring in supplying them with Geese Ducks & Buffalo meat when they were greatly in want of it. he is one of those 3 men who have lately returned from Indians whom they found 2 Days Journey beyond the Methy Portage & that 2 Jepowyans came there in a visit - while they were there from the Athapescow who say that all the Indians in that Quarter are nearly Starving & killing very few skins on account as they say of the very cold Season and them getting so very little for what they do kill from the Canadians - There being no opposition there."
" at 6 PM our 5 men returned who went to Green Lake with Trading Goods. They have brot down with them 250 lbs Fatt & 250 lbs Beat meat - the same Canadian who kept in Company as they went up returned with them."
" Yesterday 2 Crees with their wifes Drank at the French House all night without the Stockades yet they were afraid to come over in the Dark notwithstanding their notorious fondnefs for Liquor - They are so very much ? of the Canadians that it is now this long habit & firmly fixed in their minds"
" 2 Jepowyans went to the French House - when the Canadians first saw them they ran out to meet them"
" 3 Jepowyans went to the French House - when those came yesterday a Canadian was immediately sent to their watch house here & Mr Black came afterwards - I suppose they remained in it all nyht as the dogs barked now? & then?"
" at 3 PM the Canadians went away in company with the Indians to their Tents for what Skins & provisions they have - This day we mifsed two piles of firewood of about 2 Sleges each. the Canadians have carried away long after I wrote to Mr Campbell about their not taking any more of our cut firewood which he promised should not be taken - but his word in relation to us is not worth a Straw"
" Mr Black continually surrounding our house to examine that nobody comes to us as we go away"
" Early this morning we missed our best Dog. he was seen at dusk last night in our yard. we suppose the Canadians have stolen him - Sent over Wm Houry to ask Campbell says ? that many of ? ? ? ? this morning - & if they had him he would let us know when they returned but he knew nothing about it"
" Three Canadians with 3 Sleges of 3 Dogs each came home they have been at Indians Tents for furs & provisions"
" Sent a Man to the Point to fetch home our Dogs - an Indian was going away from the french House there. Immediately Mr Black ran from the Canadian House to prevent our Man from speaking to the Indian which he did as the Native durst nor speak to our Man - They have them in such terrible subjection by their numbers and the ? of the Natives"
At 8 Am Mr Ogden & 7 Canadians came home with 9 Sleges of 3 Dogs each loaded with Skins & Meat - They went away 17th Inst. & has been towards the Methy Portage - how very mortifying it is to us to see such loads of Furs and Provisions brot home by the Canadians and our men durst not stir from the House after any Indians for fear of having Their legs & arms broken by the Canadians. They have as much threatened to do - & which they are very Capable of doing by their superior Numbers & the Bad Commanders they have who will stand at nothing to obtain their ends"
" Sent Wm Houry over this morning to ask Mr Campbell if our dog was returned, that we might have him again, he did not see him - Mr Black & Ogden said he was not up (9 1/2AM) altho our man saw the remains of Breakfast on the table & Andrew Kirknefs told our Man that Campbell had been up some time but had hid himself not wishing to be asked about the Dog. - one of the Canadian Women told my woman that when we first went over he was then in the Guides? House. That Mr Black much wished to catch him the Evening before but the Dog offered to bite him - when Andrew Kirknefs was told to entice him since which she says she has not seen him & That 2 Canadians who are yet about have him not. that Black has killed him - he says that he will soon have our next best Dog and that if we remain here another Year he will kill the whole - he held up by the Throat David Garsons little Dog till near Dead - Andrew Kirknefs told Wm Houry in the morning that he wished again to come into our Service. he saw him also in the afternoon in the Woods and very much wished him to speak to me to allow him to return - he says he is heartily tired of being where he is - we are now obliged to Confine all our Dogs in the Garden during the Whole Day & keep a watch & let them out at night into our yard to keep them from being stolen by the Canadians - This is a sad necefsity that our Dogs cannot be allowed to run about as usual"
" Mr Black came & enticed away two of our puppies this morning - luckely I met him in the Track with them at his heels - I called them & they returned with me - he never looked behind him after he saw me - had I not have met him we should never have seen them again"
" Went over to the Canadian House - but could not get any satisfactory information concerning our Stolen Dog - always receiving evasive answers. he showed? me the Letter from Mefs Auld & Thomas to Mr. ??"
" Andrew Kirknefs was seen in the woods by one of our Men whom he sent & wished me to go & speak to him - I would not go as he is but an indifferent hand - & perhaps Mr Campbell wished him to remain here awhile on purpose to hear every thing from our men he can with regard to our future expectation."
April 2 1811
" 2 Jepowyans went to the French House & some others went there at nyht as they were drinking all night"
" Andrew Kirknefs told Wm Houry that if he would be allowed to remain with us he would tell every particular about our Stolen Dog & many other things - Two Canadian Men & Women remain in their Watch House here to prevent any of those at their House from visiting us of those Indians who are now there."
" At 10 1/2 PM sent away Wm Houry Ja's Isbister Wm Lesly & Wm Sinclair to Green Lake with 8 Dogs & 4 Sledges. The 3 former to go to the Saskatchewan river with Thomas Isbister & James Leeny - who all 5 are to assist down with the Crafts in that river to York Factory. Every night the Canadians Inhabit their Watch house here, to watch us preventing Indians from coming Sly ly to us in the nyht."
" In the afternoon 3 Jepowyan Men 11 woman & one Canadian went away towards Beaver river. 2 Canadians men & boy in the morning went away suppose in quest of our men who went away last nyht. Last night near bed time 3 Canadians rapped at our West Gate wanting to come in, gave them no admittance - as we suppose them to be spies"
" Mr Black came behind our House this morning & looked a considerable time over our Stockades at our Dogs in the Back Garden - At noon he & Ogden came to their Watch house & beat hard on their windows & made our Dogs bark much - I am afraid that they mean to poison them as they cannot get them otherwise - we constantly keep them in Day & Nyht for fear of their being Stolen by the Canadians - Swans first seen this Season"
" At 8 Am 5 Jepowyan men with 5 Sledges came over the Little portage - when Ogden & a Canadian ran out to meet them & take pofsefsion of every thing they had and in the afternoon one more came with a Slege - Making wood hinges for outer doors that we may take the Iron ones away when we go & leave all the Doors shut - Yesterday I spoke to Andrew Kirknefs & told him that at the time of Embarkation I would satisfy him whether or not he would be allowed to re-enter our Service- he is heartily tired of the Candians Employ."
" at 8 AM 2 Canadians & the Indians who came here before returned. Mr Black also accompanied them. just before he went away he walked quite through our yard in at the East Gate & out at the West Gate with an Indian with him never stopping or speaking to anyone."
" As our Men went to the Nets as usual this morning our best Dog we have lost 3 Weeks ago came out of the French yard. he is now very poor - a little after Mr Ogden came over with a made up story that a Cree Indian had brot him back last nyht - we are informed from better authority That is the Canadian Woman That he was constantly confined in one of their out houses ever since we lost him"
" One Man, 2 women & 2 boys Canadians came here from the Green Lake. They brought down a Horse with them - Their Sleges (3) were loaded apparently with meat."
" at 9 PM the 2 Canadians returned from the Indians with 2 Sleges. 2 Jepowyan boys accompanied them - learnt that Mr Black had gone forward? to some other Indians & That men are to be sent to him"
" The two Boys went away with a Slege load of Fish & in the afternoon 2 Canadians went that way with 2 Sleges 4 Dogs each"
" Some more Canadians went away in the nyht perhaps for Pitch as this is the Season to collect it"
" Cartier the French Guide came over to our house. he told me that 7 or 8 Jepowyan Hunters had died This winter & that in consequence Mr Campbell would not have half the number of Packs This Year as the Last which he told me was 85. he is going to build 3 new Canoes & repair the others much split by the Frost"
" Some drops of Shot fell in our Yard one on Findleys? head Standing near our Mens Door - the report came from the N? corner of the French Stockades"
" Two & sometimes 3 Canadians Constantly watching in their Watch house here. we cannot stir but they see us. Andrew Kirknefs told one of our men that some time ago Mr Black when going his usual rounds about our house in search of Tracks saw a Jepowyan Man in the North Swamp coming towards our House but That when he saw him he called out loud & the Indian ran back as hard as he could"
" In the afternoon the Great Jepowyan Chief Chioozah & 12 Men with 21 Sleges & their families went to the French House. Their? Pitch hunters at Egg Lake fell in with them & escorted them here. They on their arrival were all shut up within the Canadian Stockades none being permitted to go out but what was accompanied by a Canadian. That they have no opportunity of coming to see us - as this Chief got a little Credit from me last Spring & I made him little presents & I am very certain he very much wishes to see me - Canadians constantly watching here."
" 3 Jepowyan Women standing in front? their House immediately carried within the French works? that they myht have no choice of speaking to us"
" Early this morning Mr Black & 3 Canadians returned with 4 Sleges."
" 2 Jepowyans went to the Canadians House with one Slege - they are ? so much afraid of the Canadians none will venture near us. Some of those Indians who came 23rd Inst. going away Daily? escorted by Canadians "
" Chioozah & the rest of his band all went away. escorted by Canadians to prevent us having any ? or dealings with. Mr Black & Campbell came over to their Watch House & a Man sent thro the Wood track to prevent any Indians returning? to speak with us - they now keep a very strict watch on that account"
" Set up a box of Earth to sow some plants in as the time for such a job is at hand - This we do to endeavour to make the Canadians believe that we shall remain here all Summer - every night this while past the Canadians have kept a very regular & strict watch in their House here but this last nyht, at times they called out very loud & sang very loud at times till day light on purpose to prevent any of those Indians who have lately gone away from coming in the nyht to speak to us. Two men Early at the Nets - the fishing has been much better this winter than the last - we get more fish from 3 Nets now Daily than we got from 6 every two Days last spring - This Spring is at least 14 Days more backward than last at this time - 3 Jepowyans with a Slege went to the french House & 9 Canadians & 3 Women went away in the Evening in 3 different directions with sleges & Dogs"
" The Indians returned - Sowed Cabbage seed in a box"
May 2 1811
" The Ice in the lake began to spot with water - some of the Canadian Pitch hunters returned - packed by? 7 nets well Dryed"
" Last night 2 Shots & this night 5 Shots were fired at the Canadian House at between 9 & 10 OClock at Night. There is an Indian there in a dying state & this done by his Friend who attends him to keep away the Mefsenger of Death- according to their wonted custom."
May 5 1811
" The ailing Jepowyan nearly dead & this morning by his own request they hawled him about 1 Mile off to Die. Mr Campbell & Black walked to our East Gates. I happened then to be there & met them - they talked long about Montreal etc. but I would not ask them in. I believe they came to visit - but the room of such people is far better than their company.
" 2 Jepowyans men & 4 women went to the French house - the french hawled their Sleges to the House - Plants up"
" The Canadians finished planting all their Large Garden at the Island for Potatoes & harrowed it"
" Put out? of our Fish shed about 3700 Tickameg ? thro the Garden - as the snow is melting fast from them in the House - & wont keep good much longer - besides we are catching nearly as much fresh fish ? as we use"
" Mefs Campbell Black & Ogden came over. I met them without the Gates & sat down - not wishing them to come into our House - however Campbell said he would wish to see our plants - he he then came with the rest into My room - & begged hard for some Turnip seed which I gave him a little with a little Windsor Bean, Kidney Beans Parsnips & Carrots - Beaver River nearly open"
" French plowing Their Garden here to sow with Barly it contains about 13? Acres. Frogs croaked much last night. The first this season - a sure sign of Summer fast approaching"
" Put into our shed the remainder of the Pine Bark - The outer end of the ribband with the Stockades fixed to it fell down - that the Canadians had sawed in two last fall."
" Campbell & Ogden came over & invited me to go over & see their new contructed Beaver Prefs on a new principal. drank tea their as they strongly prefsed me to do it - Tho very much against my Inclination to visit such people. They have nearly finished 4 new Canoes & repaired two old ones - They get all their Bark not far from This for that businefs"
" at 7 1/2 PM 3 Canadians came over the Ice on the Isle a la Crofse Lake from Beaver river"
" Early this morning the Canadians went with several Sleges & brot home 2 large Canoes over the Ice to repair - besides all their Furs, Provisions etc. from the Mouth of Beaver River. That they have brought down Beaver River in the 2 Canoes from Green Lake - Mr Campbell & Black walked round our house and where the Stockades were cut down by them last fall, they stopped some time looking at them. Cut the Ice along shore to set a Net in open water as we cannot trust them out of sight of the House in the Bay behind where the Canadians have some set in open water some days past as they would at the least take away all the fish. The Canadians set all their Garden with Potatoes at the Big?"
" Heard privately from a Canadian who came from Green Lake lately That our Men who are gone up for Pemmican to Cold Lake had gone away 13 Days ago - being the 7th Inst. - a Jepowyan went to the French House with a load of Geese & Ducks. he soon returned & Mr Black walked round about our house till he was gone far away"
" Took up our 2 Nets from under the Ice. we have ? none down - Ice beginning to turn weak - we have 3 set clear along shore in the open water near the House"
" Sent word by Andrew Flett to tell Andrew Kirknefs that I would write to Mr Campbell to allow him & his woman to return to us. principally as he can be a good evidence to many of the Canadians rascally actions to us here this Winter. a Canadian coming from the ? ? carrying a Tent fell thro the Ice but being near the shore ? ? they got him out safe. ? muskettos made their first appearance at nyht"
" Sent John Loutit over with a note to Mr Campbell to allow ? Andrew Kirknefs & his woman ? ? House. he told the bearer he would send me an answer in the afternoon. he did not. he and Mr Black came over past Sunset & asked me what reasons I had for writing over to him & whether it was to be considered in a Public or Private manner. - I told him that I would consider it as my duty to demand him as he was still under Contract to the Company - he hesitated much & gave me no ? answer whether or not he would send him & his woman. he and Black wished to Force? John Loutit the Bearer of my Note to bring over the 2 guns They robbed from our 2 Men last November but he would not as I had previously told him not to bring them if offered them. Mr Campbell abused us much to our Man & asked him many inquisitive and impertinant questions - & the Man always evaded answering by saying he 'did not know'."
" at 8 AM Mr Richard Sutherland and 6 Men came over the Ice from Beaver River leaving David Garson and three Men to take care of the Large and Small Boats & the Goods about 2 Miles from the Mouth of the Beaver river on a Small Island - our men left Green Lake the 10th Inst. for the Cold Lake taking up all the Goods, Dogs & 8 Men. 3 to return with the boat. They remained 3 1/2 Days at the appointed spot near Cold Lake but saw nobody - nor had anybody been There This Spring Tho long expected Their provisions being nearly all expended. They had to serve them up. They were all obliged to return back and we are greatly disappointed at receiving no provisions to serve us down to the Low Country - or getting our Provisions sent to the Saskatchewan River - Mr Sutherland has not brot down with him 40 lbs Beat Meat & no fat or dry meat. Mr Sutherland says that Mr Keith the Canadian Master at Green Lake pitched a Tent early in april not above 12? yards from his Door to keep Indians from coming to visit him & would not allow a Single Beaver river or Bungee Indian to enter his house - These are the only Tribes who kill Beaver that Trade here - The Plain Indians generally kill wolves & foxes what the Canadians are carelefs about Trading from the Indians - They even would not allow Wm Findley to go down along the Creek - Thinking he was going in search of Indians -The Canadians took up a stick & offered to Strike our Man - ours took up one in his turn when the Canadian ran home. When Mr Keith & 3 men came over to Mr Sutherlands House where he had 2 men - he abused our people much - Keith had pistols with him. Two Canadians in a small Canoe accompanied. according to custom, our men up & down from Cold Lake. as our Dry Provisions sent down in Spring ? be little to serve us down to Nelson House ? ? ? be under the ? and drying about 480 tickameg to assist us down - Andrew Kirknefs told one of our men last night that Mr Campbell would not part with him and Mr. Black told him that if he offered to go to us they would make every Canadian in their House ravish his woman before his Eyes and used many other threats to intimidate him joining us - Campbell & Black come over & Invited self & Mr Sutherland to see their Garden - not a word they spoke about Andrew Kirknefs woman - Mr Keith & 2 men remained at Green Lake when our people came away - Not an hour after our Men saw a Large smoke ascending in the direction of the Houses - we imagine the Canadians have set fire to it as They sometime ago Threatened when we left it - This we suppose the reason of their remaining behind our Men - Our Men saw an Indian coming down Beaver river but he was even afraid to speak to our Men till they repeatedly assured him that no Canadians were with them - They had just pafsed - got all he had, only one Goose no skins"
" all hands employed yesterday to put down all our best Nets to catch & dry fish to serve in part for our Journey down - The men are much averse to dry them - but wish to waist? there time going down in Setting nets on the Track? as had formerly been the usual practice with them when short of Dry provisions. In the Evening Cartier brot over a Note from Mr Campbell saying that he will not allow Andrew Kirknefs to come over to our House but at the Moment of our Embarkation for Churchill."
" Took out our 2 Boats to clean & repair ready for our Embarkation - one of them requires 2 Large pieces putting? in - Ice broke and drove a good deal.
" The Ice moved much & David Garson & people with the 2 Boats got a pafsage acrofs to the Old House - but could get no further for the Ice Jambing close to the shore. got ? 3 Nets much broke by the driving Ice. sent the men to set the others in deeper water That the Ice may drive over them. In the Evening Andrew Kirknefs came over here with his things- on Sunday Evening before Cartier brot me over Campbells note Mr. Campbell beat him very much and threatened to carry him down to Montreal in Irons- he was beaten That he had not been able to get out of Bed since till now, when he went & asked liberty to return to us, they were very much against his coming & used & threatened him very badly- They would not allow his Woman to accompany him. They called her into Campbells room about 5 minutes before him & threatened her not to go with him & Mr Campbell had told her what to say by his threatened her asked her before Andrew Kirknefs if she would go with him - she answered as before directed 'No' - he was bringing away her extra clothing but Mr Black ? ? House - threatened him that he would severely beat him & would Murder him if he did not leave her things which he was compelled? to do - In my Note to Mr Campbell I wished him to return unmolested but they have used him excefsively Ill - They stand at nothing by their great numbers - Andrew offered to go away on sunday? past after Campbell beat him by knocking him on the room floor & jumping on him when down, but Mr Black seized Andrew & brot him back & made him remain. Cartier, Bruce? & Ogden with the two above mentioned were present when Campbell so barbarously used him"
" at 3 PM our 2 Boats with the men got to our House, the Ice opening in the Bay gave them a pafsage. on their Landing Mr Black immediately came and paraded before our house at the Landing place with his gun in his hand & Dagger & 2 More Canadians watching we imagine what? things we take out of the boats - we would not unload them till they went away. Only one man looking on - The Canadians still keep Andrew Kirknefs &? woman - how tyrannical to act in? that manner not suffereing her to go to Andrew Kirknefs. Mr Black & Ogden came over to ask the price of the Kettle They got from me 3d Jan'y & to buy some of our dogs, I told them the price of the former & I would not on any account let them have any of the latter - Campbell & Black walked round our House in the evening - while our 2 Boats lay confined with the Ice in this Lake & no Canadians Present an Indian Traded with our men all he had, consist of 1 unskinned Beaver, 1 Swan, 3 Geese & 7 Ducks. he made great complaint of the tyranny of the Canadians who got all he killed & gave him so very little in payment for it - This is the General complaint of all the Natives."
" Packed several things bu ready to Embark for Churchill Factory when the Ice clear away - Men busy splitting & drying fish to serve us for our Journey down"
" At noon La Waile went in his Batteaux & overhauled two of our Nets from end to end & Then went to a third one When Andrew Flett went to him & he desisted - Andrew asked him why he overhauled our Nets. his pretended excuse was that he had lost some of his & was looking for them. Their twine & ours being so greatly different that at the very first look they are easily distinguished - Mr Campbell & Black spoke to Wm Lesly near their Watch house & told him that he was due me 3 Beaver Skins for a Kettle & that he should accompany them to their House & bring them over - They prefsed him much but he told them that he would first go and ask me about it - They then parted - half an hour after I sent over James Leeny the smartest Man here - Mefs Campbell Black and Ogden were all upstairs when he went in - when they came down they asked him to sit down - he told them his errand was for the 3 Beaver Skins due us for the Kettle. Mr Black then brot out of a room and ? against him the two guns they pillaged from our Men in November last - But previous to this Black gave him a Dram & spoke very kindly to him - our man told him according to my direction to him he was not to bring them over to our House if they offered him - when he found our Man unwilling to take them away Black came close to him & held his fist at his face & told him that he would break his Neck if he would not take? over? the 2 Guns - our man still persisted in not taking them when Black lifted him from his seat several times & threw him down violently on it again & struck him hard on his shin with English Shoes which cut his leg much & ran down in a Stream of blood all because he refused taking the Guns - Campbell Black & Ogden now left him & went into their rooms and put on their Daggers & Campbell & Black swore that if he did not carry them away to our House They would Murder him - he was obliged for fear of his life to take them away. Campbell walking close before & Black close behind him with their Daggers on - This was to prevent his leaving them by the way - Ogden & Poulet watched at the Corner of their Stockades to see that he carried them into our Yard when Campbell & Black left him at the parting of the Track about 40 yards from our House - Our Man threw down both Guns about 4 Yards from our West Gate without our Stockades - he brought over the 3 Beaver skins for the Kettle. They told him that they supposed we wished to go to Law with them concerning what they had done to us this winter, but they said they did not care a Dam for the Law. Daze a Canadian was in the room the whole time they threatened & beat our Man & Flammah? the Cook - when the three Skins was given to our man he opened them according to what I had told him to see that they were all Large & good when they abused him very much for presuming to open, examine & count them - They were tyed up together"
June 1 1811
" Last nyht fixed two men on the watch alternately to watch our Boats that the Canadians may be prevented from cutting them adrift or burning them - also two men are watching our nets as we suppose the Canadians take away the Fish caught in them in the nyht. at noon 35 Canoes of Jepowyans came & lay at Landsman Point near an hour - Andrew flett went there to set a net as usual, directly Chartier & another Canadian followed us in a Canoe - to preventing of them from speaking to him - The Canadians clothed some of the Chief Indians & gave them some Liquor - 2 Canadians always in their Watch house here to prevent Indians from coming over to our House here - Laid up in the ? privately a Box containing? Old Iron - to be taken up when any of us at any future time go there again to Trade with Indians - after? some effectual steps are taken to keep the Canadians from acting in the unjustifiable manner they now do"
" Busily employed daily splitting & Drying fish and getting every thing in readynefs to Embark - At 8 AM a Canadian Canoe with Keith & 3 Men came from Green Lake - There are now no Canadians there. At 8 PM Mr Laroque & 10 men in a Canoe arrived here from Deers Lake who have as last year followed the Ice. Campbell & Black walked round our house. We have 4 men constantly watching our Boats & Nets every night for fear of the Canadians doing Them any Injury - as they act lately - we cannot trust them - they are determined to drive us all away from These Northern Parts where the furs are the best & the most plentiful - Last nyht 2 Canadians at their Watch house here continually during the whole nyht kept shouting hallowing singing very loud & beating on their windows with a Stick, which being Parchment makes a noise like a Drum. this is done on purpose to let the Indians know who is ?? at their House that they are watching in order to prevent any comming towards our house. And also to vex & disturb us in the Nyht. One of the Children saw an Indian in the Woods near our house who wished to speak to me, I went secretly but saw nobody"
" Sent over a note to Mr. Campbell specifying some of the atrocious actions they had committed on the Persons & Property of the Hudson Bay Company Servants - sent it by Charley as every one of our men refused carrying it over thro fear of receiving a beating. In the afternoon he sent his superficial Note in answer containing no truth - in the Evening the 4 French Masters walked round our House - Saw the Indian in the woods who wished to see me yesterday - got from him 1 otter, 2 Beaver, 2 Martins & 2 Muskrats which he traded for Cloth - he told me, as the others that all his Countrymen greatly wished to Trade with me but that they were so much afraid of the Canadians. Could the proposition be put in force that Mr Auld presented to the Committee last year be put in force, incalculable would be the superior trade of our Company - the proposition being very equitable - that the disinterested would all say was very just - when both Companys stood equal chance & leave the Natives their sole Master of their own property for them to dispose of at either parties House where they received the Most Goods & Kindest treatment - How hurting to the Natives to be forced to Trade with the Canadians and not receive at most more than half they would from us - Got every thing ready to Embark tomorrow - 4 men we have constantly on the Watch every nyht - all the fish we have dryed is only 360 - This with what Pemmican we have I hope will put us down to Nelson House - where we expect to receive a supply to serve us to the Factory - Campbell says in his Note that our House shall be safe but a Canadian man told David Garson that if we remained a little while in sight of our House after we left it we should see it in Flames.
" at 10 PM last nyht 2 Canadians came to their Watch house here with a Large Drum & beat very hard on it & sang very loud on purpose to disturb us - but the ? of them was not able as they thought to make a sufficient noise. from 8 to 10 others came & joined them. They hallowed, shouted very loud & sang Drumming on the Drum & Windows so hard as they durst venture from breaking- This they continued without ceasing till 2 OClock in the morning- but still some remained behind - During the night they threw sticks, Chips & stones against the sides & roof of our House - so that not a single person in it could get the least sleep. 2 Men watching our boats & 2 our Nets as usual? - at 8 AM we all Embarked for Churchill Factory in 3 boats & 16 Men - before we went away swept out all our Houses very clean, extinguished the fires- shut the Doors & windows all in - & closed both Gates into the Yard & barred them - Mr Ogden with 2 Canoes of Canadians accompany us with 10 to? 13 Packs per? Canoe 4? Men & 7 women each - ? go ahead of us to get every thing from the Indians that may be on the road as they can go much faster than we who are heavy loaded with Trading Goods ? taking down towards Nelson House - as we took up our Nets after we left the house & about 3/4 mile from it & in Syht - numbers of Canadians Climbed over our Stockades - Then the French officers? ? with many Indians thro the Gate that the Canadians had unbarred who went over the Stockades first - when we had travelled about 4 hours we saw a large smoke ascending exactly in the Direction of our House & we suppose that it is the Canadians who set it on Fire as the Canadian said Yesterday - One of the Canadians Women who now accompanys us told us privately that they Intended to immediately to burn it as they had done to our other Houses at the Green Lake when Mr Sutherland & people left it in the Spring - Took all our Dogs with us - put up at 6 PM nearly thro Isle a la Crofse Lake being very early but it is necefsary as none of us had the least sleep last nyht at the House by the dreadful & loud noises of the Canadians on purpose to disturb us - this was done at the ? view? brot to hinder every one of our men from again ever returning to this place - They are all so very much harassed & hurt that not a single man I firmly believe would be Induced to go here again until they ? the Company had taken some Decisive steps to prevent the Canadians from going on in the manner they have - Andrew Kirknefs woman ran towards our House yesterday to come to him but the Canadians ran after her & carried her back again - They have now given her to a Canadian. Calm hot weather."
" At 3 1/2 AM Embarked & put up at the lower end of Primos Lake - One Canoe of Canadians constantly keep a distance a head of us & the other behind us that we can have no chance of getting any thing from any that we might find in the road - At nyht They sleep close to us."
" Passed at entrance of Knee Lake 5 Canoes of Jepowyans that the lead Canadian Canoe had just got 50 Beaver skins from?. Also in the afternoon pafsed many more Canoes of Jepowyans in Grafs river - but the Canadians getting to them some time before us had taken from the Natives every thing they had amounting to upwards of 100 Beaver Skins -how very vexing it is we have no chance of getting any thing ? ?"
" 6 Canoes of Canadians overtook us at the Devils Portage when those 2 that has always accompanied us from the Isle a la Crofse went away with them - they well knowing that there is no more Indians between here and the Frog Portage where our Tracks separate. The 13th at noon arrived at the mouth of the Deers river where we found Mefs Charles, Lewis & 5 men. They left Deers Lake 20th & arrived here 23d. we must remain here until Mr Holmes comes from his House, built last January towards Cumberland House. he is soon expected. the 14th in the afternoon he came with a Canoe & 5 Packs of furs - he says that Wm Oman and 4 men had left his House to go to fetch Pemmican from Cumberland to Nelson House. the 7th Inst Left here Edward Mowatt & Francis's Son, with 2 Indian Canoes & 11 Pieces of Trading Goods to take to Egg Lake House - we left the above at 5 PM & put up on the Muddy Portage at 8 1/2 PM - Mr Holmes goes in a Canoe with 3 men down to Nelson House - we have all his & Deer Lake furs with us, in a ?? Boat"
" at 1 PM arrived at Nelson house - The 20th got every thing ready to send down 2 Boats with Mefs Charles, Sutherland & Lewis - no provisions could be found here to dispatch more - so that self & Mr? Snoddie remain here waiting the arrival of the Canoe that is soon expected from Cumberland House with Pemmican. The 21st Mefs Charles & party Embarked for Churchill Factory - 23d at 2 PM Wm Oman and party returned in a Large Canoe from Cumberland House with 20 Bags of Old Pemmican & consequently very indifferent - got every thing ready to leave this Tomorrow. fitted out Mr Holmes in several necefsary Articles of Trading Goods he wanted - he embarks tomorrow with 2 men to build a New House towards Cumberland"
" In the morning we Embarked. self & Mr Snoddie & 23 men in 4 Boats for Churchill Factory - Left here in Care of Nelson House for the Summer Wm Oman & one man. The 26th Arrived at the Southern Indian Lake at 6 AM we remained here 2 hours & Mr Spence & one man embarked with us & totally abandoned the Settlement here - altho the Canadians are? here - & the Indians Trading mostly all with us - its a pity to have been left in this manner - but by directions from the Factory its totally abandoned & the Indians? ? & will in the future be lost to us for want of a man or 2 remaining with them - The 31st we had the Misfortune to loose a Keg at a great fall containing 40 lbs of castorum, by its rolling into the river & the current sweeping it away - it soon sunk & was never more seen tho we did our utmost to overtake it before it sank - July 3rd we all arrived safe at Churchill Factory - Mr Charles & party got here 30th Inst at 10 1/2 PM"