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Banner: Pathfinders and Passageways: The Exploration of Canada About This Site
The Mapmakers: An Essay in Four Parts
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Exploring Westward

18th Century

At the beginning of the eighteenth century, the French and the English were engaged in a war that did not end until 1712. With the peace outlined in the Treaty of Utrecht, both sides saw a shifting of their possessions and trading rights in North America. One result of this shift was that much territory formerly claimed by the French now came under British control. Another was that the invaluable relationship with the Iroquois, as well as trading rights with other nations west of the French-held territory along the St. Lawrence, would now be open to the British.

Even with the revival of the fur trade shortly after the end of the war (there had been a glut on the European market for beaver fur), exploration in Canada was relatively inactive for the first part of the century. Towards the middle of the century however, the Hudson's Bay Company began to expand their operations further west due to reports of the unprecedented travels of La Vérendrye and others, whose progress threatened to gain them too much ground in the trade.

Peace came to an end in 1743, when France declared war on Britain.

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