Fort Alexander, Manitoba
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Fort Alexander is a community in Manitoba, Canada, located on the Sagkeeng First Nation, on the south bank of the Winnipeg River. The Sagkeeng area, or the mouth of the Winnipeg River, was originally settled with native camps used for fishing, hunting, and trade. During the fur trade era, La Vérendrye built a trading post, named Fort Maurepas, on the north side of the river; this post was abandoned near the end of the French period. In the year 1792, a clerk for the North West Company, Toussaint Lesieur, built a post on the south side, which became an important provisioning post for the canoe brigades. Bags of pemmican, brought from the North West Company's posts on the upper Assiniboine, were stored here and taken as needed by the canoe brigades passing between Grand Portage (later, Fort William) and the far northwest. This post was usually referred to as Fort Bas de la Rivière, because of its location at the bottom of Winnipeg River, and it seems to have functioned as the capital of the Company's Lake Winnipeg district. The Hudson's Bay Company operated its own post here for a few years between 1795 and 1801. In 1807, the North West Company partner Alexander Mackay rebuilt the post on a nearby site. Beginning in 1808, the new post was known as Fort Alexander. After the Northwest and Hudson's Bay Companies merged in 1821, Fort Alexander was operated as a trading post for the natives in the region.
This ancient trading area for native peoples was a part of the copper culture as well. Copper points and artifacts were found in the area. The source of the copper was likely from the Lake Superior copper mines that are thousands of years old.
Today, the Fort Alexander First Nation is known as the Sagkeeng First Nation, and is nearby the town of Pine Falls, Manitoba. Members of the Sagkeeng First Nation are Ojibway, or otherwise known as Chippewa and Anishinaabe.
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