Photo Uploaded: May 28 2009 15:24:45 GMT Taken: 2009:05:23 13:43:35 Manufacturer: Canon Camera: Canon EOS DIGITAL REBEL XTi Aperture: F4 Shutter: 1/60 sec ISO: 400 Flash: Yes (Auto, red-eye reduction)
A visit to historic Lower Fort Garry (The Stone fort) in Manitoba, Canada.
One of the two kitchens in the fort.
Lower Fort Garry has the finest stone fur trade buildings in all of western Canada. The Hudson's Bay Company started construction in 1831 and used the fort to supply its vast network of fur trade posts. Located below the rapids on the Red River, Lower Fort Garry was the perfect place to load supplies and furs bound for distant outposts like York Factory and, eventually, for Europe. In 1871, the Crown, the Ojibwa and the Swampy Cree First Nations made the first of the numbered treaties in western Canada here at "The Stone Fort". Lower Fort Garry was also one of the first training grounds for the North-West Mounted Police (later the RCMP
The 1871 treaty was established between the Crown and seven Chiefs of the Ojibway (Saulteaux) and Swampy Cree First Nations at Lower Fort Garry. Indian Treaty No. 1 transferred the land that now comprises part of modern Manitoba. The treaty's intent was to ensure the peaceful settlement of the prairies by European immigrants, while providing First Nations people with land, access to resources and other benefits needed for their survival as a people. But almost immediately after the treaty was established, the two parties disagreed on its meaning. Indian Treaty No. 1, the precedent for the 10 subsequent numbered treaties in Western Canada, is commemorated by a plaque outside the West Gate of the Fort.
Every now and then there was a crisis that called for military action, and Lower Fort Garry was the obvious choice for a base of operations. In the 1840s, British troops (6th Regiment of the Foot) were sent to the fort when a dispute erupted with the Americans over the boundary between Oregon and what is now British Columbia. However, some believe the request for troops was actually intended to intimidate local free traders (as trading with anyone other than the HBC was illegal). In either case, by the time the troops arrived (1846), the threat of invasion was long over. The troops (becoming a nuisance by causing minor disturbances) were put to work at the fort completing the construction of the walls. When the Red River Rebellion broke out in 1870, Louis Riel occupied Upper Fort Garry, and the Quebec Rifles took the lower fort. No wars or fights ever occurred at Lower Fort Garry as it was a peaceful settlement.