Davies Family Research Library Oregon Historical Society 1200 SW Park Avenue Portland, OR 97205 Telephone: 503-306-5240 Fax: 503-219-2040 email@example.com
Materials are in English and
in various Native American languages.
Funding for encoding this
finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for
English explorer, trader, and geographer David Thompson (1770-1857) was
born in London and educated at the Grey Coat School, Christ's Hospital School,
and at Oxford University. While still in his teens he came to Canada as an
apprentice with the Hudson's Bay Company, but left in 1797 to become a partner
in the North West Company. His extensive explorations of western Canada
included the discovery of the source of the Columbia River in 1807, and he
surveyed the entire river in 1811. He established trading posts throughout the
Pacific north west, including ones on the Kootenai, Pend Oreille, and Spokane
Rivers. In his later years he created a comprehensive map of the northern
United States and Canada, based on the surveys he and others had completed.
From 1816 to 1826 he headed the British commission that established the
boundary between the U.S. and Canada. His old age was marred by poverty, and
his work was largely forgotten until the posthumous publication of his writings
in the early 1900s.
The collection contains Photostat copies and microfilm of selections
from Thompson's journals, notebooks, and other writings. Included are his
journals, 1806-1812; observations, 1807-1809; courses and distances, 1808-1812;
"Saleesh and Kullyspele [sic] vocabulary"; Mandan vocabulary; and report of
experiences in the west, written in 1845. The microfilm contains Thompson's
journal, 1807; account of trade of the North West Company, 1809; and remarks on
the country west of the Rocky Mountains, 1813.
Use of the Collection
Restrictions on Access :
The collection is open to the public.
Restrictions on Use :
The Oregon Historical Society is the owner of the materials in the
Research Library and makes available reproductions for research, publication,
and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from the Research Library
before any publication use. The Society does not necessarily hold copyright to
all of the materials in the collections. In some cases, permission for use may
require seeking additional authorization from the copyright owners.
Preferred Citation :
David Thompson papers, Mss998, Oregon Historical Society Research
The collection is arranged in the following series:
Series A: Journals, 1806-1812
Series B: Observations and other writings, 1807-1845
Series C: Microfilmed records, 1807-1813
Acquisition Information :
Origin of the collection is unknown.
Dictionary of American biography (New York : Scribner's, 1936), v. XVIII, p. 455.
Related Materials :
David Thompson, Columbia journals (Montreal
; Buffalo : McGill-Queen's University Press, c1994)
Location of Originals :
Originals located at the Archives of Ontario, Canada; the Royal Geographic
Society, London, U.K.; and at the Royal Commonwealth Society,
Detailed Description of the Collection
Series A: Journals, 1806-1812
1806 December 13-1807 July 26
1807 July 24-1808 February 8
1808 February 4-April 10
1808 April 20-June 8
1808 August 4-1809 September 26
1809 September 27-1810 July 22
"Journey from the Boggy Hole
in the Saskachewan [sic] to the Athabasca River"