The typescripts are arranged into four series. A: manuscripts related to Oregon; B: manuscripts related to Washington; C: manuscripts related to Canada and particularly British Columbia; C: manuscript related to the history of Oregon and the fur trade.
In series C, of particular interest are the first and second journal of Simon Fraser, 1806, 1808; the voyages of the ship Columbia, 1787-1789; and the journal of John Work, Chief Factor, Hudson’s Bay Company, Astoria, 1824-1834.
Typed transcripts of incoming and outgoing correspondence and one news paper article. Majority of the letters are on the topic of westward expansion/protection, Canadian confederation, interaction with and displacement of Indigenous groups, and life and politics in the mid 19th century. Correspondence with such figures as:
Letters and papers relating to employment with the Hudson’s Bay Company. These include letters of appointment, official announcements, lists of officers of the Hudson’s Bay Company, and an inventory the posts and officers in the Albany River district.
Correspondence, accounts, journals maps, etc., documenting Bissett’s career with the Hudson’s Bay Company. The Photostats (in C.1 and C.2) include Bissett’s journal and accounts at the Red River, 1854-1855, and a journal “Lachine to the Sandwich Islands” 1858-1859. There are also journals for 1859 and 1867. The original documents (in C.3) include correspondence with the Hudson’s Bay Company, 1858-1875, and accounts, 1860-1873. There are Bissett’s commissions as Chief Trader (1858) and as Chief Factor (1872), and a list of Chief Traders and Factors, 1855-1879. There are also some plans / maps, sketches, and photographs including a sketch of the Hudson’s Bay Post at Honolulu, ca. 1860.
McDonald's correspondence, 1791-1860, mostly concerns business and property matters, but also includes personal correspondence. There are statements of account with McTavish, Frobisher & Co., 1799; with McTavish, Fraser & Co., 1803-1804; with McTavish, McGillivray & Co., 1808-1809. There are two volumes of autobiographical notes assembled in 1859 and covering the period 1791-1816.
There is a second copy of the autobiography, probably transcribed in the late 19th century. Written on the front fly leaf is the name: A.E. MacDonald. It has 63 leaves, and there are minor textual variants.
File contains 1 document outlining the financial responsibilities of each partner of the North West Company from 1804 to 1813, the problems of bill exchanges in England during and after the War of 1812, and the financial disputes which occurred after the absorption of the NWC into the Hudson's Bay Company.
Drawing of an immature Tundra Peregrine Falcon from a 18th century specimen [modern geographical distribution: worldwide; the tundra subspecies nests on the North American tundra and migrates South to Southern Canada and the United States in the winter].
There are three letters from Lord Selkirk, one from Lord Dalhousie, and eight from Lady Selkirk. The early letters concern the Red River Settlement and the North West Company. The letter from Lord Dalhousie, 1824, concerns legal matters, and the two late letters, 1828 and 1833, from Lady Selkirk are personal in nature.
Affidavit concerning Bown’s controversy with the Hudson’s Bay Company over the printing by the Nor’-Wester of a petition on memorial dealing with imprisonment of Dr. John Schultz. It is dated 10 July 1868 at St. Cloud Minn. Note: Part of Exhibit A, and all of Exhibits B, C, & D are missing.
Bown, Walter Robert, 1828-1903
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