Trading Post
 Trading Posts, Beaver Pelts, Hudson Bays Blankets, Fort Snelling, Indian Hostilities

Trading Posts

     Built for commercial reasons and not military, most of the trading posts were built on waterways in order to export their pelts and furs down river and to bring up by boat their supplies and trade goods for the Indians and  trappers.  Many were built like forts in fear of Indian Hostilities

     As early as 1662, trading post records have it that ten pounds of tobacco was traded for furs for a hat.   The Dutch, French and British, all used this method of establishing a trading post or factory as they were sometimes called.   The trading posts then trading beads, trinkets, knives, blankets, guns and other necessities to the fur trappers and Indians for furs

     Thus emerged the trade blanket, the most famous being the Hudson Bay's version, and the trade gun, known as the Northwest Gun, both manufactured for the sole purpose of  trading post exchange goods exchanged for furs

     The American Fur Company owned by John Jacob Astor brought this system of commerce out West.   The headquarters trading post was located on the Minnesota River across from Fort Snelling but it was not long before he had trading posts in Oregon and in Wyoming close to Fort Laramie

     Interesting to note was that the Rocky Mountain Fur Company chose not to use trading posts but utilized the notorious rendezvous in order to trade with the mountain men, fur trappers and Indians

     St. Louis started out as a lowly trading post and flourished into the fur trading capital. The Bent's Fort Trading Post built by Bent and St. Vrain Fur Company was a trading post located near what is now La Junta, Colorado.    Fort Bridger Trading Post was built by Jim Bridger as a trading post for the settlers and pioneers as they traveled the overland trail

     Many times the trading post was only comprised of  broken down cabins.  To the travelers it was a welcome sight for repairing wagons, getting a hot meal and trading for fresh livestock before making their mountainous journey that laid ahead. Their destiny unknown with visions of a new prosperous life in Oregon or California  

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