The Journals of Alexander MacKenzie: Exploring across Canada in 1789 and 1793

Overview

Alexander Mackenzie (1763-1820), explorer and fur trader, was possibly the first white man to cross continental North America. He traveled mostly by canoe, determining his longitude by observing the eclipses of the planet Jupiter's satellites. He made two trips: one to the Arctic Ocean in 1789, and another to the Pacfic Ocean in 1793 (twelve years before Thomas Jefferson sent Lewis and Clark west). This edition includes both journals, plus Mackenzie's own General History of the ...
See more details below
Paperback
$19.25
BN.com price
(Save 16%)$22.95 List Price
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (11) from $8.95   
  • New (7) from $14.16   
  • Used (4) from $8.95   
Sending request ...

Overview

Alexander Mackenzie (1763-1820), explorer and fur trader, was possibly the first white man to cross continental North America. He traveled mostly by canoe, determining his longitude by observing the eclipses of the planet Jupiter's satellites. He made two trips: one to the Arctic Ocean in 1789, and another to the Pacfic Ocean in 1793 (twelve years before Thomas Jefferson sent Lewis and Clark west). This edition includes both journals, plus Mackenzie's own General History of the Fur Trade.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781589760363
  • Publisher: Stackpole Books
  • Publication date: 6/1/2001
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 428
  • Sales rank: 1,074,905
  • Product dimensions: 5.52 (w) x 8.48 (h) x 0.94 (d)

Read an Excerpt

Alexander Mackenzie was the first man to cross continental North America, a trip he accomplished by canoe in 1793 - twelve years before Lewis and Clark. Mackenzie's journal of his explorations appeared in 1801.

Both the Lewis and Clark and the Mackenzie expeditions were conceived as waterborne explorations and owed their strategy to the French explorers, who had proposed, sixty years earlier, that the North American continent could be crossed by going west on either the Saskatchewan or the Missouri, and then linking up with the unidentified "River of the West."

Acting on this overly-simple thesis, Mackenzie took the fur traders' route along the Saskatchewan and found his way over to the Fraser, and thence by an Indian trail to the coast.

Mackenzie had an amazingly naive attitude about the wilderness around him and the proper way one should interact with it. But somehow his Dudley Doright personality worked:

"My tent was no sooner pitched, than I summoned the Indians together, and gave each of them about four inches of Brazil tobacco, a dram of spirits, and lighted the pipe...I informed them that I had heard of their misconduct, and was come among them to inquire into the truth of it. I added also that it would be an established rule with me to treat them with kindness, if their behavior should be such as to deserve it; but at the same time, that I should be equally severe if they failed in those returns which I had a right to expect from them. I then presented them with a quantity of rum, which I recommended to be used with discretion, and then added some tobacco, as a token of peace. They, in return, made me the fairest promises; and,having expressed the pride they felt on beholding me in their country, took their leave."

It seemed as if his handful of men were often on the verge of mutiny. At least one of his guides deserted him. They found a new one:

"About midnight a rustling noise was heard in the woods which created a general alarm, and I was awakened to be informed of the circumstance, but heard nothing...At two in the morning the sentinel informed me, that he saw something like a human figure creeping along on all-fours about fifty paces above us...it proved to be an old, grey-haired, blind man, who had been compelled to leave his hiding-place by extreme hunger, being too infirm to join in the flight of the natives to whom he belonged."

Mackenzie fed the blind Indian, then drafted the old man as his guide. The party groped its way westward.

Mackenzie's route to the Pacific Ocean proved too difficult for others to follow, but this does not diminish the value of this great expedition across wild America.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Preface 1
Part 1 A General History of the Fur Trade From Canada to the North-West
1 A General History of the Fur Trade From Canada to the North-West 8
2 Some Account of the Knisteneaux Indians 78
Part 2 Journal of a Voyage from Fort Chipewyan to the Arctic Ocean in 1789
1 Journey from Fort Chipewyan to the Arctic Oceanin 1789 122
Part 3 Journal of a Voyage from Fort Chipewyan to the Pacific Ocean in 1793
1 Peace River 198
2 Rainy Lake 208
3 South by West 221
4 Foul Weather 238
5 Rising Water 250
6 North East by North 264
7 Mountains 279
8 Pointed Canoe 295
9 Canoe Building 315
10 Native Canadians 352
11 Renew Voyage 362
12 Friendly Village 376
13 Beaver Robes 393
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)