A Time for Rebuilding
was born in England. His first job with Hudson's Bay Company
was as a carpenter. He impressed company officials with his intelligence
and so was soon promoted to Chief Factor, which is the commander
of a trading post, of Fort Albany on James Bay in 1682.
given the job of rebuilding the company after years of war between
England and France. HBC had lost 4 of its 5 trading posts
to the French and its business has suffered. In fact, the company
was in debt and had to borrow money just to pay the interest it
In 1714 Knight
arrived at York Fort to reclaim it from the French. He was determined
to return the company to its former success. Knight was successful
in restoring the company's business.
woman worked as an interpreter for Knight. She told him stories
of a water route in the north that had rich mineral resources.
From her description, Knight was convinced that it was the Northwest
Passage. He went to England to get help setting up an expedition.
In 1719 Knight
and his crew set sail in search of the Northwest
Passage. They had been given two ships, Albany and Discovery.
Neither the ships nor James Knight ever returned. A storm
had forced them to abandon their ship and land on the shore. The
shipwreck was found 48 years later.
dissapearance and the shipwreck remain a mystery. The area where
the ships sank was only a few days from trading post. It
is surprising that they never tried to reach the post, or why no
search party was ever sent out to find them.
To learn more about Knight and Thanadelthur, visit the Hudson's
Bay Company biography of James Knight.
do you think Knight's most important accomplishment was?
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