Wed, 7th Oct 2020 10:00

Printed Books, Maps & Documents, Travel, Science & Engineering

  Lot 66 *
Lot 66 - Canada.Journal of a Voyage to Hudson’s Bay, and the Red River Settlement, [Manitoba, Canada]

Canada.Journal of a Voyage to Hudson’s Bay, and the Red River Settlement, [Manitoba, Canada]

Sold for £12,200


Canada. Journal of a Voyage to Hudson’s Bay, and the Red River Settlement, [Manitoba, Canada], British North America, from May the 27th 1820 to May the 27th 1821, [by] John West, a manuscript journal on 23 folio pages, a total of approximately 8,000 words written in diary form with date entries for approximately 130 days of West's first missionary year, the entries of varying length, endorsed on final blank and addressed to the Rev Mr Pratt, Church Missionary House, Salisbury Square, Fleet Street, London, note on first page 'rec[eive]d October 20/[18]21', paper watermarked 'Snelgrove 1818' [a Somerset papermaker], a little spotting and soiling, some dust-soiling and browning to folds of final blank, stitched as issued, slim folio (30.5 x 18.5 cm)

Provenance: John Lawson (1923-2019), bookseller.

The Manitoba Red River Colony, also known as the Selkirk Settlement, was founded in 1811 when Thomas Douglas, 5th Early of Selkirk, received a grant 120,000 square miles of land from the Hudson's Bay Company (known as the Selkirk Concession). On the west of the Selkirk Concession, it is roughly formed by the current boundary between Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

John West (1778-1845) was the first Anglican priest in western Canada and a teacher, reformer and author. A missionary of the Church Missionary Society and a chaplain for the Hudson’s Bay Company. At the Red River Settlement West located his mission three miles north of Fort Douglas and here constructed a chapel, a school and residences for himself and his Indian pupils. The chapel would eventually come to be known as ‘The Upper Church’ and later as St John’s Cathedral. West returned to England in June 1823 and his account of his time was published as The Substance of a Journal during a Residence at the Red River Colony, British North America; and Frequent Excursions among the North-West American Indians, in the Years 1820, 1821, 1822, 1823 (1824). The account of this first year is covered in chapters 1 and 2, pp. 1-60. While there are some identical sentences, the published account is not presented in such a specific diary form and differs greatly, some of the published account being more lengthy and descriptive of certain incidents. The journal ends before he was soon to mentor 'Henry Budd', the first North American Indian to be ordained to the ministry, in 1850. West's published Journal is dedicated to Budd.

Josiah Pratt (1768-1844) was an English evangelical clergyman, involved in publications and the administration of missionary work. He was elected secretary of the Church Missionary Society on 8 December 1802 keeping that post until 23 April 1824.

The journal begins with embarkation at Gravesend on board the Eddystone, with West travelling to take up an appointment as Chaplain to the Honourable the Hudson’s Bay Company, at the Red River Settlement [Manitoba], the journal continuing with entries from May, June and July as they sailed up the east coast of England and around the north coast of Scotland before leaving the Orkneys for Hudson’s Straits, the entry for Sunday 23rd July at the top of page 4 noting that they had entered Hudson’s Straits.

Here follow selected journal entries:

24 July: The captain ordered several guns to be fired to apprise the Esquimaux Indians of the ship’s being in the Straits. Went in a boat in the evening among the floating fields of ice and icebergs which presented one of the most sublime views I ever saw. All the imposing objects in nature floated past us in silent grandeur, in the shapes of church steeples, broken columns and vast ruins. The imposing scenery mocks imagination to describe.

25 July: Nearly off the savage islands. The Esquimaux Indians to the number of about 300 visited the ship. Their appearance was remarkably healthy, and I was astonished at the wonderful dexterity with which they paddled their canoes across the boisterous waves. They bartered blubber to about 3 ton weight with the ship Eddystone, for a few axes, kettles and bits of old iron hoop. Some climbed up the ship’s side, and went on board, were very imitative in their manners. Several of their children I observed were eating raw flesh from the bones of animals which they had killed, and they appeared to have a strong natural affection towards them. When bartering their articles, they held them very tenaciously till they actually got hold of what was offered for them, and when not satisfied expressed much savageness, with ferocity in their countenance and manners. Being the first Indians I had seen wandering in their extreme ignorance, wretchedness, and cruelty I felt strong emotions of pity towards them, as they withdrew to their haunts along the shores.

29 July: … discovered a polar bear swimming with her two cubs towards the ship. The mother bear and one of the cubs were killed, the other was taken alive, which the captain intends taking to England.

3-13 August: August trapped in ice.

15 August: Anchored off York factory.

17 August: Was much impressed in seeing the Indians around the Factory. They appear to be sunk into the lowest state of degradation as human beings. Could scarcely refrain from tears in visiting them in their tents. The life of the Indians appear to be one succession of difficulties in procuring subsistence and they wander their life without hope and without God in the world. When shall this hitherto neglected race of the north give up and come to the knowledge of the Saviour. Fulfil O Lord thy promises in their salvation.

19 August: Feel deeply interested in the education of the half breed children, numbers of whom are running about the factory, and are to be found at all the Hudson’s Bay Company’s posts, growing up in ignorance and idleness. They are the offspring of the Company’s officers and clerks by Indian or half breed women. Have submitted a plan to the HB Company for educating, clothing, maintaining 100 of them at the RR Settlement.

25 August: Conversed a good deal with the chief of the department at Churchill (most northern post in the Hudson’s MC territories) who informed me that a considerable number of Esquimaux Indians traded at that post, who were clothed with the skins of deer entirely. In summer they live upon seals, and whales like the Esquimaux Indians we saw in Hudson’s Straits. In winter, they live under the snow, burning oil with moss as a wick, which cooks their food as much as they wish for, while at the same time, it must contribute to their warmth. He supposed they might travel 150 or 200 miles north of the fort till they met another Tribe, who like them might range the same distance on the shore, further north.

3 September: Left York Factory for the Red River, a supposed distance of about 800 miles.

29 September: Arrived at the White Fall… as I sat in my tent in the evening some Indians came, and sat by the fire, in front of it, and gave me to understand that one of them knew a little English. I found that he had been taken prisoner when very young and was taken to England by an American, probably in the capacity of a servant boy. All that he remembers about England he told me, was, that he was very much frightened lest the horses should fall upon him. He told me that he knew a little about Jesus Christ and as going to the Red River hoped I would teach him to read, after he returned to the Sioux Country where he was going to see his relations. He has a most interesting, intelligent countenance and expressed much delight at my coming over to his country to teach them.

5 October: An old Indian with his truly weather-beaten wife arrived at the post with some dried meat of the moose dear. For a little rum he bartered away all that he and his wife carried. It was truly distressing to see them reeling in their intoxication. When the obtain what they call a good drink, the drunken parents delight in making their children drunk.

12 October: Thank God we are now nearly thro’ the [Winnipeg] Lake, which may be considered a dangerous navigation. In fact, the whole passage from York to the mouth of Red River is as difficult as can be imagined, which must operate to the prejudice of a settlement I would suppose so far in the Interior.

25 January [1821]: The men who accompanied us from Brandon House as guards, left us this morning as we were informed that the band of Indians we feared were some considerably to the north of our track. Saw vast numbers of buffalo grazing on the plains near us. Soon after it was dark, we were considerably alarmed at our encampment, in hearing the Indians drumming, and dancing a short distance from us in the woods. We immediately nearly extinguished our fire, and lay down with our guns under our heads, with considerable apprehensions that they had seen our fire, before we heard them, and would visit us during the night.

6 April: Am sorry to find that an Indian stabbed one of his wives last night in a fit of intoxication. Having obtained liquor in barter for his goods he entered the tent and wantonly (without the least provocation it is said) committed the murderer’s attempt. The barter of rum which the Indians frequently occasions murder amongst them and is attended with a train of evils, that may be compared to the curse and cruelty inflicted on the Africans by the slave trade.

7 April: Sent a small quantity of English flour and a little vinegar for one of the Catholic missionaries, as I found him without these articles, and apparently suffering in health from observing Lent, literally on boiled fish.

15 May: Rumours prevail that the Indians will attack the Settlement but think there is no occasion to be alarmed for our safety. There appears indeed some agitation among several tribes of Indians around us, and they are preparing for war with the Sioux Indians, for having sculped one of their chiefs with his party a short time ago. But none of these things move me, in my plans for the education of the children and the natives, and others at Red River.

18 May: Have got my rafts of wood safe to the spot where I intend to build the school immediately – 60 feet by 20 partitioning each end for the schoolmaster and a hunter. The Red River being in the centre of British America appears to me, to present a most desirable spot for a missionary establishment – from whence – under a divine blessing, Christianity may be extended throughout this vast and hitherto neglected territory.

25 May: By the arrival of the boat from Qu’appelle I received another Indian boy, about seven years of age, from the circumstance of having noticed him, when I stopped with the Indian hunters in their tents, during my trip to Beaver Creek in the winter. Soon after I left these Indians, the father of the boy observed, that as ‘I stood between the Great Spirit, and them, he could refuse me nothing, and would send me his boy’. Just before the boats left the post, he brought the boy, and requested that he might be given me. And I [have] daily expectation of two more, who are on their way to me from the Sioux country. And have the promise of some of the children of the Seaulteaux Chief – Pigwis – when I can receive them. Have 12 men employed in building the school house and hope in the course of the month to have it so far finished as to be able to receive them. [Ends]

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Telephone bid: You can contact our office to arrange a telephone bid. A member of our staff will telephone you a few minutes before bidding commences on your specified lot and will bid on your behalf, according to your instructions. This service is only available on lots with a minimum pre-sale estimated value of £300.

Auction: Printed Books, Maps & Documents, Travel, Science & Engineering, Wed, 7th Oct 2020

To see a page-turning version of our catalogue, please see our Virtual Catalogue.


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Dominic Winter (Auctioneers) Ltd

Conditions Of Sale And Business

Terms and Conditions of Sale 

1. (a) Dominic Winter (Auctioneers) Ltd ("the Auctioneer") sells as agents for the seller (except where otherwise stated) and as such is not responsible for any default by buyer or seller.

(b) The Seller warrants to the Auctioneer and to the buyer that he is the true owner or is properly authorised to sell the property by the true owner and is able to transfer good and marketable title to the property free from any third party claims.

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(b) Where goods are bought at auction by a buyer who has entered into an agreement with another or others that the other or others (or some of them) shall abstain from bidding for the goods and the buyer or other party or one of the other parties is a dealer as defined in the Auctions (Bidding Agreements) Act 1927 and 1969 the buyer warrants that the goods are bought bona fide on a joint account.

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4. (a) The buyer shall forthwith upon the purchase give his name and permanent address together with proof of identity and pay the Auctioneer immediately after the conclusion of the auction the total sum due.

(b) The buyer may be required to pay down during the course of the sale the whole or any part of the total sum due, and if he fails to do so after such request the lot or lots may at the Auctioneer's absolute discretion be put up again and resold immediately.

(c) The buyer shall at his own expense take away any lot or lots purchased no later than five working days after the auction day.

(d) The Auctioneer may at his discretion agree credit terms with a buyer and extend the time limits for collection in special cases but otherwise payment shall be deemed to have been made only after the Auctioneer has received cash or funds by bank transfer or a sterling banker's draft or the buyer's cheque or debit/credit card payment has been cleared.

(e) All sums due to the Auctioneer shall be paid as shown and he reserves the right to charge interest which shall accrue at the rate of 4% over such base lending rate of National Westminster Bank Plc as shall be in force at the date that interest becomes due, such sum to be calculated per annum from day to day on all amounts due but unpaid. This right shall be exercisable without prejudice to any other right of the Auctioneer.

5. (a) If the buyer fails to pay for or take away any lots pursuant to clause 4 or breaches any other condition of that clause the Auctioneer as agent for the seller shall be entitled after consultation with the seller to exercise one or other of the following rights:

(i) Rescind the sale of that or any other lots sold to the buyer who defaults and re-sell the lot or lots whereupon the defaulting buyer shall pay to the Auctioneer any shortfall between the proceeds of that sale after deduction of costs or re-sale and the total sum due. Any surplus shall belong to the seller.

(ii) Proceed for damages for breach of contract.

(b) Without prejudice to the Auctioneer's rights hereunder if any lot or lots are not collected within five days or such longer period as the Auctioneer may have agreed otherwise, the Auctioneer may charge the buyer a storage charge up to £1.00 per lot per day.

6. (a) The seller shall be entitled to place a reserve on any lot and the Auctioneer shall have the right to bid on behalf of the seller for any lot on which a reserve has been placed. A seller may not bid on any lot on which he has placed a reserve.

(b) Where any lot fails to sell, the Auctioneer shall notify the seller accordingly. The seller shall make arrangements either to re-offer the lot for sale or to collect the lot and may be asked to pay a commission not exceeding 50% of the selling commission and any special expenses incurred in cataloguing the lot.

(c) If such arrangements are not made within seven days of the notification the Auctioneer is empowered to sell the lot without reserve by auction or by private treaty and to receive from the seller the normal selling commission and special expenses.

7. Any representation or statement by the Auctioneer in any catalogue, brochure or advertisement of forthcoming sales as to authorship, attribution, genuineness, origin, date, age, provenance, condition or estimated selling price is a statement of opinion only. Every person interested should exercise and rely on his own judgement as to such matters and neither the Auctioneer nor his servants or agents are responsible for the correctness of such opinions. No warranty whatsoever is given by the Auctioneer or the seller in respect of any lot and any express or implied warranties are hereby excluded.

8. (a) Notwithstanding any other terms of these conditions, if within fourteen days of the sale the Auctioneer has received from the buyer of any lot notice in writing that in his/her view the lot is a deliberate forgery and within fourteen days after such notification the buyer returns the same to the Auctioneer in the same condition as at the time of the sale and satisfies the Auctioneer that considered in the light of the entry in the catalogue the lot is a deliberate forgery then the sale of the lot will be rescinded and the purchase price of the same refunded. "A deliberate forgery" means a lot made with intention to deceive.

(b) A buyer's claim under this condition shall be limited to any amount paid to the Auctioneer for the lot and for the purpose of this condition the buyer shall be the person to whom the original invoice was made out by the Auctioneer.

9. Lots may be removed during the sale after full settlement in accordance with 4.d. hereof.

10. All goods delivered to the Auctioneer's premises will be deemed to be delivered for sale by auction unless otherwise stated in writing and will be catalogued and sold at the Auctioneer's discretion and accepted by the Auctioneer subject to all these conditions. In the case of miscellaneous books, maps and other items, the Auctioneer reserves the right to extract and dispose of items that, in the opinion of the Auctioneer at his absolute discretion, have no saleable value and, therefore, might detract from the saleability of the rest of the lot and the Auctioneer shall incur no liability to the seller in respect of the items disposed of. By delivering the goods to the auctioneer for inclusion in his auction sales each seller acknowledges that he/she accepts and agrees to all the conditions.

11. (a) Unless otherwise instructed in writing, all goods on the Auctioneer's premises and in his custody will be held insured against the risk of fire, burglary, water damage and accidental breakage or damage. The value of the goods so covered will be the hammer price, or in the case of unsold lots the lower estimate, or in the case of loss or damage prior to the sale that which the specialist staff of the Auctioneer shall in their absolute discretion estimate to be the auction value of such goods.

(b) The Auctioneer shall not be responsible for damage to or the loss, theft, or destruction of any goods not so insured because of the seller's written instructions whether caused by negligence or otherwise.

(c) Any liability of the Auctioneer for any claim arising from loss or damage of any kind in respect of goods whether caused by negligence or otherwise including any claims for compensation will be limited to the amount of insurance cover effected in accordance with the provisions of clause 11.a. above.

12. The Auctioneer shall remit the proceeds of the sale to the seller thirty days after the date of the auction provided that the Auctioneer has received the total sum due from the buyer. In all other cases the Auctioneer will remit the proceeds of the sale to the seller within seven days of the receipt by the Auctioneer of the total sum due. The Auctioneer will not be deemed to have received the total sum due until after any funds received from the buyer have cleared. In the event of the Auctioneer exercising his right to rescind the sale his obligation to the seller hereunder lapses.

13. In the case of the seller withdrawing instructions to the Auctioneer to sell any lot or lots, the Auctioneer may charge the seller a fee of 12.5% of the Auctioneer's middle estimate of the auction price of the lot withdrawn together with Value Added Tax thereon and any expenses incurred in respect of the lot or lots.

14. If, on collation, any named items in the catalogue prove defective, in text or illustration, the buyer may reject the lot provided he/she returns it within fourteen days stating the defect in writing. This however will not apply in the case of unnamed items, periodicals, autograph letters, manuscripts, music, maps, atlases, prints or drawings, nor in respect of damage to bindings, stains, foxing, marginal wormholes or other defects not affecting the completeness of the text, nor in respect of lack of list of plates, inserted advertisements, cancels or subsequently published volumes, supplements, appendices or plates or error in the enumerating of the plates, nor in respect of defects mentioned in the catalogue or announced at the time of sale.

15. The Auctioneer accepts no responsibility in connection with the commissioning of his staff to bid for any lots. Reserves, and commission bids given by telephone are accepted only at the sender's risk and must be confirmed in writing before the date of the sale. Lots will always be bought as cheaply as is allowed by other bids and such reserves as are on our books.

16. Buyers are advised that a storage charge of £1.00 per lot per day plus Value Added Tax at the current rate will be levied on all purchases not cleared within fourteen working days of the sale. After this period the buyer will be responsible for loss or damage.

17. Artist's Resale Rights ("Droit de Suite"). Lots marked with "AR" or another appropriate symbol and referenced as such in the catalogue are subject to the Artist's Resale Right law. The buyer agrees to pay the Auctioneer an amount equal to the resale royalty and the Auctioneer will pay such amount to the artist's collecting agent. Resale royalty applies where the Hammer Price is 1,000 Euro or more and the amount cannot be more than 12,500 Euro per lot.

The amount is calculated as follows:

Royalty For the portion of the Hammer Price (in Euro)

4.00% up to 50,000

3.00% between 50,000.01 and 200,000

1.00% between 200,000.01 and 350,000

0.50% between 350,000.01 and 500,000

0.25% in excess of 500,000

Invoices will be issued in Pounds Sterling. For the purposes of calculating the resale royalty the Pounds Sterling/Euro rate of exchange will be the European Central Bank reference rate on the day of the sale. Please refer to the DACS website for further details.

18. These conditions shall be governed by and construed in accordance with English Law.


Buyer's Premium :

The buyer's premium is 20%, except those lots asterisked (*) in the title for which Value Added Tax (VAT) will be added to the premium, resulting in a buyer's premium of 24% inclusive of VAT. Eligible items include manuscripts, prints, photographs, drawings, framed maps, paintings, pens and other objects which are subject to VAT at a rate of 20% on the buyer's premium as part of the Auctioneers Margin Scheme. VAT zero-rated items such as books, unframed maps and albums are not subject to VAT on the buyer's premium.

Live Auction Charges

An additional commission of 3% plus VAT (3.6% inclusive of VAT) on the hammer price is payable if you use the live auction bidding facility on the Dominic Winter Auctioneers website ( This charge will be added to your invoice automatically.

An additional commission of 4.95% plus VAT (5.94% inclusive of VAT) on the hammer price is payable if you use the live auction bidding facility on the ATG Media website ( This charge will be added to your invoice automatically.

An additional commission of 3% plus VAT (3.6% inclusive of VAT) on the hammer is payable if you use the live auction bidding facility on the Invaluable website ( This charge will be added to your invoice automatically.

Payment (UK Buyers)

Payment is preferred by direct Bank Transfer to our bank account. Our bank details will be supplied to you with your invoice.

Payment can be made in cash at the Cashier's Office, either during or after the sale. Alternatively, you can pay by cheque (Pounds Sterling only), please allow 5 working days for the cheque to clear before collection of goods.

Credit or Debit Card payments will not be accepted by telephone unless by prior arrangement with the auctioneers. Card payments can be made in person at our premises but must be accompanied by relevant ID confirming address details. We do not accept payments by American Express.

Payment (Overseas Buyers)

Payment must be made by direct Bank Transfer to our bank account. Our bank details will be supplied to you on your invoice. No card payments will be accepted unless by special prior arrangements with the auctioneers. All transfers must state the relevant invoice number. The amount we receive must be the total due after currency conversion and the deduction of any bank charges (normally £7).

UK Shipping

We are not specialist shippers. Some items, such as framed & glazed or fragile goods, will require specialist handling and buyers will be asked to use Mailboxes or RF Shipping Ltd. (details below).

For non-fragile items and items of reasonably small size, we offer an in-house packing and shipping facility for UK buyers. When possible, purchases will be sent by either Royal Mail Special Delivery or DPD overnight service. The charge for this service is variable (£15 minimum per parcel) and will be added to your invoice. Please note shipments to the Highlands and Islands may require shipment by courier and may be more expensive. Please contact us for a quote before bidding.

For larger packages and fragile goods, we recommend Mailboxes, Pack & Send or RF Shipping Ltd who will collect fully paid-for purchases from us twice a week and liaise with the buyer direct. For more information please contact Sarah Ball by telephone on +44 (0)1285 860006 or email These companies will require payment direct for their services.