- In the 1690s the French had the advantage over the English in North
America. They had a well-established fur trade and owned greater possessions.
- However, as the source shows there were many English who were keen
to challenge the French.
- The proposal is asking for a Patent, which basically meant that the
English wanted permission from the Crown to take sole control of the
- At this stage of the empire, taking control meant taking control of
the trade in the area. To do this, they had to establish good relations
with the Native Americans. We have many examples of treaties between
them, sometimes with the Native Americans acknowledging the English
monarch as their ruler.
- Both the English and the French relied heavily on the Native Americans
to guide them around the lands. They also got most of the furs for the
fur trade from the Native Americans, usually trading them for a range
of goods, especially guns and alcohol.
- It would be over 100 years before large numbers of European
settlers started to drive out the Native Americans and settle on their