The fur trade is a worldwide industry dealing in the acquisition and sale of animal fur. Since the establishment of a world fur market in the early modern period, furs of boreal and cold temperate mammalian animals have been the most valued; the trade stimulated the exploration and colonization of Siberia, northern North America, the South Shetland and South Sandwich Islands. Today the importance of the fur trade has diminished. Animal rights organizations oppose the fur trade, citing that animals are brutally killed and sometimes skinned alive. Fur has been replaced in some clothing by synthetic imitations, for example, as in ruffs on hoods of parkas. Before the European colonization of the Americas, Russia was a major supplier of fur pelts to Western Europe and parts of Asia, its trade developed in the Early Middle Ages, first through exchanges at posts around the Baltic and Black seas. The main trading market destination was the German city of Leipzig. Kievan Russia, the first Russian State, was the first supplier of the Russian Fur Trade.
Russia exported raw furs, consisting in most cases of the pelts of martens, wolves, foxes and hares. Between the 16th and 18th centuries, Russians began to settle in Siberia, a region rich in many mammal fur species, such as Arctic fox, sable, sea otter and stoat. In a search for the prized sea otter pelts, first used in China, for the northern fur seal, the Russian Empire expanded into North America, notably Alaska. From the 17th through the second half of the 19th century, Russia was the world's largest supplier of fur; the fur trade played a vital role in the development of Siberia, the Russian Far East and the Russian colonization of the Americas. As recognition of the importance of the trade to the Siberian economy, the sable is a regional symbol of the Ural Sverdlovsk Oblast and the Siberian Novosibirsk and Irkutsk Oblasts of Russia; the European discovery of North America, with its vast forests and wildlife the beaver, led to the continent becoming a major supplier in the 17th century of fur pelts for the fur felt hat and fur trimming and garment trades of Europe.
Fur was relied on to make warm clothing, a critical consideration prior to the organization of coal distribution for heating. Portugal and Spain played major roles in fur trading after the 15th century with their business in fur hats. From as early as the 10th century and boyars of Novgorod had exploited the fur resources "beyond the portage", a watershed at the White Lake that represents the door to the entire northwestern part of Eurasia, they began by establishing trading posts along the Volga and Vychegda river networks and requiring the Komi people to give them furs as tribute. Novgorod, the chief fur-trade center prospered as the easternmost trading post of the Hanseatic League. Novgorodians expanded farther east and north, coming into contact with the Pechora people of the Pechora River valley and the Yugra people residing near the Urals. Both of these native tribes offered more resistance than the Komi, killing many Russian tribute-collectors throughout the tenth and eleventh centuries.
As Muscovy gained more power in the 15th century and proceeded in the "gathering of the Russian lands", the Muscovite state began to rival the Novgorodians in the North. During the 15th century Moscow began subjugating many native tribes. One strategy involved exploiting antagonisms between tribes, notably the Komi and Yugra, by recruiting men of one tribe to fight in an army against the other tribe. Campaigns against native tribes in Siberia remained insignificant until they began on a much larger scale in 1483 and 1499. Besides the Novgorodians and the indigenes, Muscovites had to contend with the various Muslim Tatar khanates to the east of Muscovy. In 1552 Ivan IV, the Tsar of All the Russias, took a significant step towards securing Russian hegemony in Siberia when he sent a large army to attack the Kazan Tartars and ended up obtaining the territory from the Volga to the Ural Mountains. At this point the phrase "ruler of Obdor and all Siberian lands" became part of the title of the Tsar in Moscow.
So, problems ensued after 1558 when Ivan IV sent Grigory Stroganov to colonize land on the Kama and to subjugate and enserf the Komi living there. The Stroganov family soon came into conflict with the Khan of Sibir. Ivan told the Stroganovs to hire Cossack mercenaries to protect the new settlement from the Tatars. From ca 1581 the band of Cossacks led by Yermak Timofeyevich fought many battles that culminated in a Tartar victory and the temporary end to Russian occupation in the area. In 1584 Ivan’s son Fyodor sent military governors and soldiers to reclaim Yermak conquests and to annex the land held by the Khanate of Sibir. Similar skirmishes with Tartars took place across Siberia. Russian conquerors treated the natives of Siberia as exploited enemies who were inferior to them; as they penetrated deeper into Siberia, traders built outposts or winter lodges called zimovya where they lived and collected fur tribute from native tribes. By 1620 Russia dominated the land from the Urals eastward to the Yenisey valley and to the Altai Mountains in the south, comprising about 1.25 million square miles of land.
Furs would become Russia's largest source of wealth during the seventeenth centuries. Keeping up with the advances of Western Europe required significant capital and Russia did not have sources of gold and silver, but it did have furs, which became known as "soft gold" and provided Russia with hard cur
Ontario is one of the 13 provinces and territories of Canada and is located in east-central Canada. It is Canada's most populous province accounting for 38.3 percent of the country's population, is the second-largest province in total area. Ontario is fourth-largest jurisdiction in total area when the territories of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut are included, it is home to the nation's capital city and the nation's most populous city, Ontario's provincial capital. Ontario is bordered by the province of Manitoba to the west, Hudson Bay and James Bay to the north, Quebec to the east and northeast, to the south by the U. S. states of Minnesota, Ohio and New York. All of Ontario's 2,700 km border with the United States follows inland waterways: from the west at Lake of the Woods, eastward along the major rivers and lakes of the Great Lakes/Saint Lawrence River drainage system; these are the Rainy River, the Pigeon River, Lake Superior, the St. Marys River, Lake Huron, the St. Clair River, Lake St. Clair, the Detroit River, Lake Erie, the Niagara River, Lake Ontario and along the St. Lawrence River from Kingston, Ontario, to the Quebec boundary just east of Cornwall, Ontario.
There is only about 1 km of land border made up of portages including Height of Land Portage on the Minnesota border. Ontario is sometimes conceptually divided into Northern Ontario and Southern Ontario; the great majority of Ontario's population and arable land is in the south. In contrast, the larger, northern part of Ontario is sparsely populated with cold winters and heavy forestation; the province is named after Lake Ontario, a term thought to be derived from Ontarí:io, a Huron word meaning "great lake", or skanadario, which means "beautiful water" in the Iroquoian languages. Ontario has about 250,000 freshwater lakes; the province consists of three main geographical regions: The thinly populated Canadian Shield in the northwestern and central portions, which comprises over half the land area of Ontario. Although this area does not support agriculture, it is rich in minerals and in part covered by the Central and Midwestern Canadian Shield forests, studded with lakes and rivers. Northern Ontario is subdivided into two sub-regions: Northeastern Ontario.
The unpopulated Hudson Bay Lowlands in the extreme north and northeast swampy and sparsely forested. Southern Ontario, further sub-divided into four regions. Despite the absence of any mountainous terrain in the province, there are large areas of uplands within the Canadian Shield which traverses the province from northwest to southeast and above the Niagara Escarpment which crosses the south; the highest point is Ishpatina Ridge at 693 metres above sea level in Temagami, Northeastern Ontario. In the south, elevations of over 500 m are surpassed near Collingwood, above the Blue Mountains in the Dundalk Highlands and in hilltops near the Madawaska River in Renfrew County; the Carolinian forest zone covers most of the southwestern region of the province. The temperate and fertile Great Lakes-Saint Lawrence Valley in the south is part of the Eastern Great Lakes lowland forests ecoregion where the forest has now been replaced by agriculture and urban development. A well-known geographic feature is part of the Niagara Escarpment.
The Saint Lawrence Seaway allows navigation to and from the Atlantic Ocean as far inland as Thunder Bay in Northwestern Ontario. Northern Ontario occupies 87 percent of the surface area of the province. Point Pelee is a peninsula of Lake Erie in southwestern Ontario, the southernmost extent of Canada's mainland. Pelee Island and Middle Island in Lake Erie extend farther. All are south of 42°N – farther south than the northern border of California; the climate of Ontario varies by location. It is affected by three air sources: cold, arctic air from the north; the effects of these major air masses on temperature and precipitation depend on latitude, proximity to major bodies of water and to a small extent, terrain relief. In general, most of Ontario's climate is classified as humid continental. Ontario has three main climatic regions; the surrounding Great Lakes influence the climatic region of southern Ontario. During the fall and winter months, heat stored from the lakes is released, moderating the climate near the shores of the lakes.
This gives some parts of southern Ontario milder winters than mid-continental areas at lower latitudes. Parts of Southwestern Ontario have a moderate humid continental climate, similar to that of the inland Mid-Atlantic states and the Great Lakes portion of the Midwestern United States; the region has warm to cold winters. Annual precipitation is well distributed throughout the year. Most of this region lies in the lee of the Great Lakes. In December 2010, the snowbelt set a new record when it was h
Minnesota is a state in the Upper Midwest and northern regions of the United States. Minnesota was admitted as the 32nd U. S. state on May 11, 1858, created from the eastern half of the Minnesota Territory. The state has a large number of lakes, is known by the slogan the "Land of 10,000 Lakes", its official motto is L'Étoile du Nord. Minnesota is the 12th largest in area and the 22nd most populous of the U. S. states. This area is the center of transportation, industry and government, while being home to an internationally known arts community; the remainder of the state consists of western prairies now given over to intensive agriculture. Minnesota was inhabited by various indigenous peoples for thousands of years prior to the arrival of Europeans. French explorers and fur traders began exploring the region in the 17th century, encountering the Dakota and Ojibwe/Anishinaabe tribes. Much of what is today Minnesota was part of the vast French holding of Louisiana, purchased by the United States in 1803.
Following several territorial reorganizations, Minnesota in its current form was admitted as the country's 32nd state on May 11, 1858. Like many Midwestern states, it remained centered on lumber and agriculture. During the 19th and early 20th centuries, a large number of European immigrants from Scandinavia and Germany, began to settle the state, which remains a center of Scandinavian American and German American culture. In recent decades, immigration from Asia, the Horn of Africa, the Middle East, Latin America has broadened its demographic and cultural composition; the state's economy has diversified, shifting from traditional activities such as agriculture and resource extraction to services and finance. Minnesota's standard of living index is among the highest in the United States, the state is among the best-educated and wealthiest in the nation; the word Minnesota comes from the Dakota name for the Minnesota River: The river got its name from one of two words in the Dakota language,'Mní sóta' which means "clear blue water", or'Mnißota', which means cloudy water.
Native Americans demonstrated the name to early settlers by dropping milk into water and calling it mnisota. Many places in the state have similar names, such as Minnehaha Falls, Minneota, Minnetonka and Minneapolis, a combination of mni and polis, the Greek word for "city". Minnesota is the second northernmost U. S. state and northernmost contiguous state. Its isolated Northwest Angle in Lake of the Woods county is the only part of the 48 contiguous states lying north of the 49th parallel; the state is part of the U. S. region known as part of North America's Great Lakes Region. It shares a Lake Superior water border with Michigan and a land and water border with Wisconsin to the east. Iowa is to the south, North Dakota and South Dakota are to the west, the Canadian provinces of Ontario and Manitoba are to the north. With 86,943 square miles, or 2.25% of the United States, Minnesota is the 12th-largest state. Minnesota has gneisses that are about 3.6 billion years old. About 2.7 billion years ago, basaltic lava poured out of cracks in the floor of the primordial ocean.
The roots of these volcanic mountains and the action of Precambrian seas formed the Iron Range of northern Minnesota. Following a period of volcanism 1.1 billion years ago, Minnesota's geological activity has been more subdued, with no volcanism or mountain formation, but with repeated incursions of the sea, which left behind multiple strata of sedimentary rock. In more recent times, massive ice sheets at least one kilometer thick ravaged the state's landscape and sculpted its terrain; the Wisconsin glaciation left 12,000 years ago. These glaciers covered all of Minnesota except the far southeast, an area characterized by steep hills and streams that cut into the bedrock; this area is known as the Driftless Zone for its absence of glacial drift. Much of the remainder of the state outside the northeast has 50 feet or more of glacial till left behind as the last glaciers retreated. Gigantic Lake Agassiz formed in the northwest 13,000 years ago, its bed created the fertile Red River valley, its outflow, glacial River Warren, carved the valley of the Minnesota River and the Upper Mississippi downstream from Fort Snelling.
Minnesota is geologically quiet today. The state's high point is Eagle Mountain at 2,301 feet, only 13 miles away from the low of 601 feet at the shore of Lake Superior. Notwithstanding dramatic local differences in elevation, much of the state is a rolling peneplain. Two major drainage divides meet in Minnesota's northeast in rural Hibbing, forming a triple watershed. Precipitation can follow the Mississippi River south to the Gulf of Mexico, the Saint Lawrence Seaway east to the Atlantic Ocean, or the Hudson Bay watershed to the Arctic Ocean; the state's nickname, "Land of 10,000 Lakes", is apt, as there are 11,842 Minnesota lakes over 10 acres in size. Minnesota's portion of Lake Superior is the largest at 962,700 acres and deepest body of wate
Saint Louis River
The Saint Louis River is a river in the U. S. states of Minnesota and Wisconsin that flows into Lake Superior. The largest U. S. river to flow into the lake, it is 192 miles in length and starts 13 miles east of Hoyt Lakes, Minnesota. The river's watershed covers 3,634 square miles. Near the Twin Ports of Duluth and Superior, the river becomes a freshwater estuary; the lower St. Louis is the only river in the state with whitewater rafting opportunities. According to Warren Upham, the Ojibwe name of the river is Gichigami-ziibi, he notes: "The river was so named by Pierre Gaultier de Varennes, sieur de La Vérendrye, a active explorer, in the years 1731 and onward. Shortly before his death the king of France in 1749 conferred on him the cross of Saint Louis as a recognition of the importance of his discoveries, thence the name of the Saint Louis River appears to have come. On Jean-Baptiste-Louis Franquelin's map and Philippe Buache's map, it is called the Rivière du Fond du Lac, the map by Gilles Robert de Vaugondy and Jonathan Carver's map are the earliest to give the present name."
The river was a vital link connecting the Mississippi River waterways to the west with the Great Lakes to the east. Jay Cooke State Park is located near the mouth of the river and is the site of a canoe portage used by Native Americans, European explorers, fur traders, coureurs des bois, missionaries of the 18th and 19th centuries, it was a rough trail of steep hills and swamps that began at the foot of the rapids above the neighborhood of Fond du Lac and climbed some 450 feet to the present day city of Carlton. Above Carlton travelers continued on to Lake Vermillion and the Rainy River. Or they may have traveled southwest up the East Savanna River, portaged the grueling 6 mile long Savanna Portage, paddled on to the Mississippi River. By the mid 20th century, the lower Saint Louis River became one of the most polluted waterways in the state. Holling Clancy Holling, in his 1941 book Paddle-to-the-Sea, illustrated the polluted state of the Saint Louis River. By 1975, the river became an Environmental Protection Agency Area of Concern.
The Western Lake Superior Sanitary District was established in 1971 to address serious pollution problems in the lower Saint Louis River Basin. WLSSD's regional wastewater treatment plant began operating in 1978. Within two years, fish populations rebounded and anglers began returning to the river. Through the 1980s and 1990s, additional cleanups took place. In 2013 the State of Minnesota abruptly pulled out of a project intended to research the mercury problem in the river; the cooperating agencies including Wisconsin DNR and the Fond du Lac Tribe were not in agreement with the ending of the study. The level of mercury is so high that strong limitations on consumption of the fish are in effect by the Minnesota Department of Health which for example limit consumption of walleye for a 50-pound child to 1/6 of a pound per month or no more than one pound every six months; the Saint Louis River was listed in 1987 as an "Area of Concern" by the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement 1987 Amendment. Nine of 14 Beneficial Use Impairments were identified in the Saint Louis River AOC.
The AOC designation has led to the Remedial Action Plan process outlined in the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement. The most recent update is the 2013 RAP Update: A Roadmap to Delisting and can be found on the WI Department of Natural Resources and Minnesota Pollution Control Agency webpages listed below; this document outlines the BUI removal strategies and list of actions to delist the Saint Louis River as an AOC by 2025. "Rationale for Listing: Fish samples taken from the St. Louis River and Lake Superior exceed standards established by Minnesota and Wisconsin for the unrestricted consumption of sport fish; each of the two states issues consumption advisories for various population groups, based on fish species and size classes. Advisories are collectively issued for the presence of polychlorinated biphenyls. Fish tissue residues of mercury and polychlorinated biphenyls exceed the 0.5 mg/kg and 0.1 mg/kg standards established in the 1978 GLWQA for the protection of aquatic life and fish consuming birds."
The river is fished for walleye, northern pike, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, black crappie, channel catfish populations. Other species of rough fish include White Sucker; the river is frequented by those traveling the Minnesota DNR Saint Louis River Water Trail, which has campsites and angling. Attempts to introduce sturgeon are under way. While native to the river at one time and pollution wiped them out many years ago. In 1983 the DNR, the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, others began rebuilding spawning habitat and introducing baby sturgeon into the river. In 2016 MPR reported, "Slowly numbers increased as the stocked fish took hold in the river. Five years ago, tribal biologists found their first fry from reproducing sturgeon, a sign that a healthy fish population could grow on its own. Minnesota began allowing catch-and-release fishing last year."The Saint Louis River Trail Association is planning construction of a long-distance hiking trail along more than half the length of the river.
Construction of the first 36-mile segment began in early 2012, with cooperation from the Minnesota DNR. List of rivers of M
The Boundary Waters called the Quetico-Superior country, is a region of wilderness straddling the Canada–United States border between Ontario and Minnesota, in the region just west of Lake Superior. This region is part of the Superior National Forest in northeastern Minnesota, in Canada it includes La Verendrye and Quetico Provincial Parks in Ontario. Voyageurs National Park in Minnesota may be considered part of the Boundary Waters; the name "Boundary Waters" is used in the U. S. to refer to the U. S. Wilderness Area protecting its southern extent, the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness; the Boundary Waters region is characterized by a vast network of waterways and bogs within a glacially-carved landscape of Precambrian bedrock covered in thin soils and boreal forests. The Boundary Waters is a popular destination for recreationalists pursuing camping and fishing as well as for those looking for natural scenery and relaxation; the area is one of several distinct regions of Minnesota. The following communities are located anywhere from two to twenty miles from the boundary waters: Ely, Grand Marais, Tofte in Minnesota and Atikokan in Ontario.
Protected areas in the Boundary Waters region in Minnesota include Superior National Forest, Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, Voyageurs National Park and Grand Portage National Monument. Protected areas in Ontario include La Verendrye provincial parks. International Boundary Waters Treaty Sigurd F. Olson Calvin Rustrum Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness Boundary Waters History Boundary Waters travel guide from Wikivoyage