A short history of Fort Alexander Manitoba

A short history of Fort Alexander Manitoba

The Sagkeeng Area was originally settled with native camps used for fishing, hunting, and trade.

In 1807, during the fur trading era, the Hudson Bay Company built Fort Alexander to facilitate trade with the natives in the area. The Fort was named after Alexander Mackay a Northwest Company partner.

Prior to the Hudson Bay Company fort La Vérendrye built a trading post on the north side of the river, calling it Fort Maurepas (not to be confused with the Fort Maurepas built on the Red River earlier and Fort Maurepas near Biloxi in Louisiana). Later, in 1792 the North West Company built a post on the south side of the River to make trading with the native communities easier and as a provisioning post for canoe brigades arriving from Grand Portage(Fort William - Thunder Bay) This trading post was referred to as Bas de la Rivière as it was at the mouth of the Winnipeg River. This then became the site of Fort Alexander when the North West Company and the Hudson Bay Company merged.

This ancient trading area for native peoples was a part of the copper culture as well. Copper points and artifacts were found in the area. The source of the copper was likely from the Lake Superior copper mines that are thousands of years old.

Today, Fort Alexander First Nation is often named Sagkeeng, and is close to the town of Pine Falls, Manitoba. Members of the Sagkeeng First Nation are Ojibwa, or otherwise known as Chippewa and Anishinaabe.

Author: Fredrick Buetefuer