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North West River

Landmarks · Specialty Museums · History Museums
North West River is a small town located in central Labrador. Established in 1743 as a trading post by French Fur Trader Louis Fornel, the community later went on to become a hub for the Hudson's Bay Company and home to a hospital and school serving the needs of coastal Labrador. North West River is the oldest modern settlement in Labrador.HistoryCentral Labrador has been inhabited by aboriginal groups for over 6000 years due to its bountiful wildlife. In 1743 French fur trader Louis Fornel was the first European to establish a year-long settlement at the present site of North West River. The site was primarily used to trade furs with the local aboriginals for European goods.TrappingFrench settlers from Quebec moved to the area surrounding North West River to work as voyageurs and trappers . Many took on Inuit wives creating a unique population of M├ętis trappers and traders. Traders would also do business trading goods with the nomadic Naskapi Innu.European fur traders relied on the knowledge of the land possessed by the trappers and the Innu to provide them with furs. Trappers living in and around North West River would come to the trading post to exchange furs for flour, raisins, canvas tents, axes, guns and other goods Valuable furs from beavers, mink, martins, seals, foxes, bears and many other fur baring animals. Trappers maintained traplines inherited from relatives throughout central Labrador.
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