Sunday, October 14, 2007

The Dawn Of Corporate Globalization

Hudson's Bay Company Coat of Arms

In 1620 Hudson’s Bay Trading Company was incorporated with a Royal Charter from King Charles II of England and was granted a monopoly of all of the Indian trading in the entire Hudson Bay drainage, roughly a third of Canada. In 1674 the original founders of the Hudson Bay Company, two Frenchmen, founded the competing North West Company. After decades of hostilities between England and France the North West Company was ceded to Britain. These were the days when the sun never set on the British Empire or its commercial interests. In other words it was the dawn of corporate globalization. British trading interests spanned the globe with outposts in far flung places as remote as the East India Company in Bombay and the Hudson Bay Company at Fort Victoria on Vancouver Island with an outpost on San Juan Island where beginning around 1850 HBC paid Indians in wool blankets for salted fish packed in barrels. According to Jo Bailey and Al Cummings in their book San Juan: The Powder-Keg Island the natives got one blanket for 60 fish.

The Hudson Bay Company still sells Wool Point Blankets made in England

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