Pine Island Trading Post Protected Area
Pine Island Fort
Links and documents
1786/01/01 to 1786/12/31
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
The Pine Island Trading Post Protected Area consists of a heavily wooded, 38-ha island in the North Saskatchewan River, approximately midway between the City of North Battleford and the Alberta border. The property features the archaeological remains of several late-eighteenth century fur trade posts.
The heritage value of the Pine Island Trading Post Protected Area lies in its association with the fur trade of the late 1700s. During this period, various North American-based traders and the Hudson’s Bay Company were seeking to gain advantage by building posts increasingly farther up the inland waterways of the Northwest, closer to First Nations trading partners. In 1786, as many as five trading concerns operated on Pine Island: the Hudson’s Bay Company; the recently formed North West Company; Peter Pangman, who was a partner of Gregory, MacLeod & Company of Montreal; Donald Mackay, also backed by Montreal interests; and an individual named Champagne. By 1787, MacKay and Champagne had departed and Pangman’s firm had united with the North West Company. For a short time, Pine Island was the most important fur trading centre on the North Saskatchewan River. The fierce competition between the North West Company’s Pine Island Fort and the Hudson’s Bay Company’s Manchester House typified the rivalry that would persist between the two companies until their union in 1821. Within a few years, however, local fur resources were becoming depleted and the traders were building farther upriver. Following attacks by a group of Gros Ventres in 1793, both Pine Island posts were abandoned and shortly afterward were destroyed by fire.
There is also heritage value in Pine Island’s connection to events of the Northwest Resistance of 1885. Early in the hostilities, Inspector Francis Dickens and his contingent of North-West Mounted Police spent two nights on the island during their evacuation from Fort Pitt to Fort Battleford. Toward the end of the conflict, the steamship North West, carrying General Frederick Middleton’s troops, stopped at the island for firewood, with confiscated arms reportedly thrown overboard to make more room for the fuel.
Province of Saskatchewan, The Parks Act, May 26, 1986.
The heritage value of the Pine Island Trading Post Protected Area resides in the following character-defining elements:
-elements that speak to occupancy and use of the island during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, including its natural environment, absence of modern structures, and archaeological remains, such as artifacts, structural features and the spatial relationships and environmental context of the remains.
Government of Saskatchewan
Parks Act, s. 5
1786/01/01 to 1793/12/31
Theme - Category and Type
- Developing Economies
- Trade and Commerce
Function - Category and Type
- Commerce / Commercial Services
- Trading Post
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
Heritage Conservation Branch,
Ministry of Parks, Culture and Sport,
3211 Albert Street,
Regina, Saskatchewan S4S 5W6
Cross-Reference to Collection