The Heritage Network

The Heritage Network

Fort Colvile Bicentennial



All posts by heritage


There are a lot of events happening this summer that provide a chance for folks to learn in person and by doing things together: 1: The Upper Columbia United Tribes is sponsoring an exhibit at the Spokane Museum of Art and Culture: AWAKENINGS: TRADITIONAL CANOES AND CALLING THE SALMON HOME SEPT 25, 2021-AUG 21, 2022… (read more)

Friends of Spokane House

There a lot of ways to think about history and as it turns out to “do” history.  The Friends of Spokane House ( recently encamped near the Kettle Falls Historical Center ( where they demonstrated tools, skills, sign language, clothes and artifacts of the fur trade era, specifically from 1810 to 1820.  The dates are… (read more)

In The Stream

In The Stream: An Indian Story by Nancy Perkins Wynecoop and N. Wynecoop Clark. It is about the life of Nancy’s Sinixt (Lakes Indian) grandmother, Able-One.  Her tribe lived across the river from present day Bossburg. In 1815, when Able-One was born, her band had little or no contact with fur traders. By the end… (read more)

A River People

Just before Hudson’s Bay Fort Colvile was established almost 200 years ago in 1825, the Hudson’s Bay Company merged with the North West Company.  The North West fur trading company had a post near the junction of the Spokane and Little Spokane rivers. When George Simpson, head of the Hudson’s Bay Company in North America,… (read more)


The Heritage Network is an association of historical museums and historical societies. Most of those are all volunteer organizations. A good central contact by phone is the Stevens County Historical Society, 509 684-5968. For member organizations, see To mail us membership checks or other materials, use:The Heritage NetworkPo Box 1051Colville, WA 99114 Email about… (read more)


Waterways were the highways of history.  Boats would carry heavy loads such as venison and firewood to villages on the shore.  Visitors from afar also arrived by boat. After Hudson’s Bay Fort Colvile was established in 1825, it soon became a hub for both native watercraft and new designs emerging from the fur trade.  In… (read more)

The McDonald Family

You will find very few characters in fur trading history to rival the exuberance, importance or colorful impact of Angus McDonald, fur trader at Hudson’s Bay Fort Colvile.  In 1861 Charles Wilson, the Secretary of the British Columbia Boundary Commission, wrote about the McDonald family leaving from the fort on a hunting expedition. Wilson took… (read more)

Fur Trade

The man business of the HBC was, of course,the fur trade, and Colvile, like all the major HBC posts, traded for a lot of furs (47k+ of beaver alone, 1826-50). HBC kept meticulous records of what were called fur returns—trade goods went out to the trading units (land posts, trapping brigades, and coastal trading vessels),… (read more)


When gathering thoughts on the 200th Anniversary of the establishment of Hudson Bay Fort Colvile I wrote about the many groups of people who were involved and the effects of that event that echo to this day (Preliminary Thoughts).  Since then a great number of people have contributed thoughts, stories, links and suggestions for commemorating… (read more)

Preliminary Goals

Historical Documentation I see two kinds of publications emerging from this event.  Since there are so many sides to what took place, I would like us to solicit papers from as many viewpoints as possible and have them presented at the event to the extent possible or reasonable, and complied in a scholarly collection.  It… (read more)