Council of Three Fires (Niswi-mishkodewinan): Confederacy of three nations descended from a common migration down the St Lawrence to the western Great Lakes for joint defence and other coordinated actions. It was made up of the Boodwaadmii (Fire Keepers), the Odaawa (Trader Nation), and the Ojibwa (Faith Keepers).
coureurs de bois: Frenchmen who sought to engage in the fur trade outside of the licensing system of French colonial authorities who assimilated to First Nations culture and acted beyond the control of the royal estate, at times counter to the interests of French authorities. In short, smugglers.
Haudenosaunee Confederacy: (The Five Nations and, after 1720, the Six Nations League) Founded sometime between the twelfth and fifteenth centuries in the present-day Finger Lakes region of northern New York. They were, from east to west, the Kanien’keha:ka, Ony’ota, Onondaga, Guyohkohnyo, and Onondowaga. The league later became known as the Six Nations around 1720 when the Skarùren migrated north from the Carolinas to join.
homeguards: Indigenous people who settled near French or English trading posts and produced and hunted food to trade with the newcomers.
Hudson’s Bay Company: (HBC) A for-profit company and quasi-governmental institution that received its charter from Great Britain in 1670 to trade for furs, explore, and settle Rupert’s Land, which consisted of the Hudson Bay drainage basin, all of Manitoba, most of Saskatchewan, and southern Alberta, and extended north to the Arctic.
Jesuits: Members of the Society of Jesus, a Roman Catholic order of priests. They were principal actors in the missionary activity in New France.
Matonabbee: (c. 1737–92) Denésoliné leader who worked for HBC and guided Samuel Hearne on his third excursion in search of the Coppermine River (1772). Matonabbee ensured the success of this expedition by using the Indigenous manner of travel, which involved trekking in a family group and provisioning along the way.
pays d’en haut: (“Upper Country”) The region of the three Upper Great Lakes.
Rupert’s Land: A tract of land comprising about a third of Canada that the Hudson’s Bay Company held a commercial monopoly over from 1670 to 1870 named for the cousin of King Charles II, Prince Rupert, who served as the HBC’s first governor.
Tessouat: (fl. 1634–54) Kitchesipirini of Allumette Island, also known as Le Borgne de l’Isle as he was blind in one eye, one of at least three ogimaak named Tessouat, he controlled travel along the Ottawa River, a key point for north-south and east-west trade. An earlier Tessouat (Besouat; d. 1634-1654) met Champlain and refused to let him travel further west. As had other Indigenous leaders, the various Tessouats frequently asserted their sovereignty to French authorities.
Thanadelthur: (d. 1717) A Denésoliné woman, referred to as the Slave Woman in the HBC records, who was captured and enslaved by Mushkegowuk in 1713 but escaped and travelled overland to York Factory. She was instrumental in negotiating peace between the Denésoliné and the Mushkegowuk, allowing expansion of the HBC to Churchill.
Wendake: Territory in present-day south-central Ontario extending eastward from Georgian Bay that was controlled at the time of early European contact by a confederacy of Iroquoian-speaking communities whom the French called Huron but who called themselves Wendat. Known as Huronia in Euro-Canadian historiography.