The Royal Navy, Ruler of the Seas

Events in the North West Territories

Limited Military Presence

Lord Selkirk's colony along the Red River eventually grew, although the presence of colonists was more or less incompatible with the Company's activities. During the 1820s and 1830s the Company erected Lower Fort Garry (at Selkirk, Manitoba) and Fort Garry (in Winnipeg). 117 These two trading posts differed from the others in that they were designed as large-scale forts and were built of stone rather than wood. They were the company's administrative centre for Rupert's Land, an immense territory stretching from Labrador to the Rockies, and also served as the residence of its governor.

The North West and Hudson's Bay companies did not maintain troops. At the very most, some posts kept a few Amerindian guards, called the Home Guards, who were armed well enough to maintain a basic level of order adequate for the forts used for trading. After withdrawal of the small detachments of French colonial troops in the mid-eighteenth century, there was therefore no permanent military presence in the Prairies until the mid-nineteenth century.