Captain James Cook He was the first European explorer to set foot on the coast of what is now British Columbia
First nations people in canoes go out to meet HMS Resolution, Captain Cook’s ship. The second ship in the expedition, HMS Discovery, is seen in the background.
On his way to Nootka Sound, Captain Cook completely missed the Juan de Fuca Strait. It is interesting to note that the word “nutka” in the native language means “go around”.
Captain Cook is seen meeting the natives at Nootka Sound in March 1778. Cook’s ships HMS Resolution and HMS Discovery can be seen in the background. Four years earlier, a Spanish ship also came to Nootka Sound but the crew did not land.
1st voyage (RED) – 1768 to 1771 2nd voyage (GREEN) – 1772 to 1775 3rd voyage (BLUE) – 1776 to 1780
James Cook died on February 14, 1779 in Hawaii.
Alexander Mackenzie He worked for the North West Company – a fur trading company in Montreal. He led the first crossing of North America (north of Mexico) in 1793.
On his first expedition in 1789, he would follow the river that now bears his name all the way to the Arctic Ocean.
Mackenzie reached an inlet of the Pacific. He tried to go on to see open water but was turned back by unfriendly natives. He missed seeing George Vancouver by 48 days.
This is the same rock and the words are almost the same. However, Mackenzie used bear grease and a red colouring to write his words. These words were carved into the rock much, much later.
Worked for the North West Company. He was the top man for the company in what is now British Columbia. He explored the river that now bears his name in the spring and summer of 1808. He got as far what is now the northwest part of Sea Island (where the airport is) on July 2, 1808. He could barely see the ocean waters when he was attacked by the natives and he had to turn back. He felt even worse later on when he discovered he wasn’t on the river he thought he was! He had always believed he was on the Columbia River. Simon Fraser
He started working for the Hudson’s Bay company in 1784 at the age of 14. He stayed with the company until 1797. He moved to the North West company and did more exploration. In 1811, he was the first European to travel the full length of the Columbia River. When Thompson retired, he had mapped almost one-fifth of North America! He was one of the greatest land geographers ever. David Thompson
Fort Prince of Wales The building started in 1732 and took over 40 years to build. It was built by the Hudson’s Bay Company to be the centre of the fur trade in the area. In 1782, the French captured the fort. The Hudson’s Bay Company got the fort back in 1783 but it’s importance was, by then, minimal.