Fort Pic

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Fort Pic (1789-1895) - A fortified Fur Trading Post established before 1789 near the mouth of the Pic River in present day Ontario, Canada. Initially established by an independent fur trader, Gabriel Cotté and partners. Operations taken over by the North West Company in 1799 and then by the Hudson's Bay Company in 1821 when the two companies merged. Named Fort Pic after after the location on the Pic River. Abandoned sometime after 1865.

Fort Pic Marker.
Pic River Marker.
Pic River near the Mouth.

Independent Fur Traders (1789-1798)

Established before 1789 by Gabriel Cotté and his partners John Grant and Maurice Blondeau. In 1795 Cotté was succeeded by Pierre St. Germain who had previously owned the Michipicoten Post. The post then consisted of two buildings surrounded by a 193' by 145' stockade. The buildings were a 136' x 12' warehouse and a 30' x 20' house, both built using horizontal cedar log walls and bark roofing.

The post collected furs from the Pic and Black Rivers basins. Fort Pic was located on Lake Superior at the southern end of a long canoe route stretching north to Fort Albany (3) on James Bay.

North West Company (1799-1821)

In 1799 Baptiste Perreault took over Fort Pic as chief factor for the North West Company. Cotté's original buildings were extended. A 20' by 15' shed, and a five room great house were added along with a 15' by 18' stable. Other structures including a powder magazine/cellar had been added by 1804. Under Perreault the number of buildings grew to nine and the stockade was expanded to accommodate the increased number.

North West Company Factors at Fort Pic
Factor From To
Baptiste Perreault 1799 1805
Dr. Henry Munro 1805 1806
Charles Chaboilly 1807 1810
Pierre Rastel de Rocheblave 1810 1815

Hudson's Bay Company (1821-1895)

After the consolidation of the North West Company into the Hudson's Bay Company in 1821, Alexander McTavish took over the post as chief factor for the combined company. He remained as factor until 1827.

The post remained stockaded at least until 1823 and some vestiges of a palisade remained as late as 1847.

Hudson's Bay Company Factors at Fort Pic
Factor From To
Alexander McTavish 1821 1827
David McIntosh 1827 1831
Thomas McMurry 1831 1834
William Chouster 1834 1836
Thomas McMurry 1847 1848
Erland Erlandson 1841 1848
Charles Begg 1849 1865

Post 1894

HBC records for the post end in 1894. It was found by visitors in 1881 still to be in operation only four buildings remaining. Parts of the stockade were still visible into the 1940s. HBC use of the site seems to have ended before 1914. A HBC store was established in 1888 in the nearby White River community.

Current Status

Some archeological remains. Excavations in 1957, 1960 and 1964. Located at the mouth of the Pic River on the west bank. Now a part of the Pic River Indian Reserve of the Ojibways of the Pic River First Nation.

Location: At the mouth of the Pic River on the Pic River Indian Reserve of the Ojibways of the Pic River First Nation, Ontario. Map point is not exact but identifies the general location.

Maps & Images

Lat: 48.60224 Long: -86.29957

  • Multi Maps from ACME
  • Maps from Bing
  • Maps from Google
  • Elevation: .....'

See Also:



Visited: 11 Jul 2016

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