If the product had imperfections or the colour was unsatisfactory in any way, Indigenous customers would refuse to trade. Indigenous demand for certain goods such as blankets and the strategies they used to obtain a better price for these items shaped the fur trade. French blankets were initially obtained by HBC to meet Indigenous demand.Eventually, British mills began producing their own blankets and cloth based on French products, but at a lower cost. When trade items didn't meet expectations, Indigenous consumers expressed their dissatisfaction. Faulty or substandard goods were sent back to London and company employees documented the details of the complaints. In response, the Company made changes and improved the quality of the items.
French traders also received complaints noting that the English woolen goods (the very same ones that had been copied) were of superior quality. As competition between Hudson's Bay Company and the North West Company intensified and the fur trade made its way into the interior of the continent, complaints related to trade goods also increased. In fact, Indigenous traders were successful in playing both companies against each other in the hopes of lowering the price of goods. This is when Germain Maugenest entered the scene.
Maugenest was an independent fur trader who was heavily in debt to a Montreal fur trade entrepreneur. To escape his dire situation, he joined HBC in 1779.His knowledge of the trade was seen as invaluable, and he was sent to England to meet with HBC's Board at Hudson's Bay House in London. There, he delivered his "Proposals of the Terms" under which he would enter into Hudson's Bay Company's service.
He offered several suggestions for improving the growing inland trade from Fort Albany along the west coast of James Bay. Among his terms was a suggestion that the Company should regularly stock and trade "pointed" blankets. By December 1779, sample blankets were received by the London Committee and an order was issued for 500 pairs of "pointed" blankets; 100 pairs each in 1-, 1.5-, 2-, 2.5-, and 3-point sizes. This item is in the category "Collectibles\Linens & Textiles\Bed & Bath Linens\Blankets". The seller is "pharmer" and is located in this country: US.
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