Political & Economic Organizations - Additional Reading

Economic Organization

B. New Opportunities

France was the first country to develop a permanent European settlement in Canada. In 1608, Samuel de Champlain established a post at Stadacona.  It became an important trading centre that helped move the fur trade into a new era.  Until then, the trade had been concentrated on the eastern coasts.  Now France began to draw on the resources of the interior.

Champlain lacked both the knowledge and people needed to travel to this region, so he formed alliances with members of the Ouendat Confederacy, the Innu and the Odawa.  These nations worked with France as middlemen.  They ferried trade goods up the St. Lawrence River, traded them with the inland nations, and brought the furs back to the post.  Indeed, as the fur trade expanded, it was the middlemen and the Europeans that made most of the profit, not the trappers that provided the fur.