"Women Smoking Leather": Identifying Women and Their Ethnicity at Fort Selkirk.

Author(s): Victoria Castillo

Year: 2015


Fort Selkirk served as a small subarctic fur trade post for the Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC) in central Yukon from 1848-1852.  The company’s priority was the trade of European goods in exchange for furs trapped and hunted by Northern Tutchone and other Indigenous groups in the region. A review of Fort Selkirk journal records indicates the fort employed and housed a pluralistic population which included British, Indigenous and Metis men who worked as clerks, labourers and meat hunters. Mostly missing from the written record is the presence of women. Archaeological excavations recovered a variety of European and Indigenous-use artifacts including those made from bone and antler. Some of these were traditionally used by Northern Tutchone women. The recovered artifacts, their spatial distribution, as well as HBC journals are analyzed to ascertain the presence, ethnicity and role of Indigenous and non-Indigenous women within the fort. 

Cite this Record

"Women Smoking Leather": Identifying Women and Their Ethnicity at Fort Selkirk.. Victoria Castillo. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Seattle, Washington. 2015 ( tDAR id: 433866)

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Spatial Coverage

min long: -141.003; min lat: 41.684 ; max long: -52.617; max lat: 83.113 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contact(s): Society for Historical Archaeology

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 402