Monday, July 24, 2017

Jean Baptiste Moreau and the Compagnie de la Colonie du Canada

Of the many companies that held fur monopolies, only two were controlled by New France (The Canadians).  They were The Communauté des Habitants and The Compagnie de la Colonie.

The Communauté des Habitants only existed for about 15 years in the mid-17th century (1645-1663).  You may recall Philippe Foubert (1616-1661) our 10th great-grandfather appears to have been a voyageur for the Compagnie des Habitants in 1649. SEE:

The Compagnie de la Colonie lasted an even shorter period of time (1700-1706). 

In 1699, faced with a prolonged slump in the beaver trade caused by over-production, the colony's merchants had two options: to lower the price of the pelts they sold to the farmer-generals (financiers who collected in a certain district) of the Domaine d'Occident, at that time holders of the monopoly for the buying of furs and their sale in Europe; or to take over the monopoly themselves. 

They chose the second solution, set up the Compagnie de la Colonie, and sent two delegates to France to negotiate transfer of the monopoly. An agreement between the two parties was signed on June 9, 1700, and ratified by representatives of Canada's elite on behalf of the whole colony, in October, at the Château Saint-Louis in Québec. 

Weighed down by debt, and unable to deal with the decline in the fur trade, the Compagnie de la Colonie was liquidated in 1706 and the monopoly was handed over to French merchants.  Source:

1704 and 1705 engagements from the Archives of Quebec

Jean Baptiste Moreau (1657-1727) our 8th great-grandfather was engaged by the Compagnie de la Colonie in 1704 and again 1705, to go fort le pont Chartrain (aka Fort Pontchartrain du Détroit or Fort Detroit).

View of Fort Pontchartrain du Détroit

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Index - Ripples from La Prairie Voyageur Canoes

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