Mercantilism trade and key players

Information / Instructions
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How does economy affect settlement?
How does economy affect society?
Can different economic systems co-exist?

How were individuals and groups involved in the economic aspects of triangular trade and mercantilism?

Overview of scenario:
To answer the focus question, this learning scenario has several "learning intentions":

  • To note differences between trading settlements and colonies.
  • To describe the main legs of the French triangular trade routes in the Atlantic.
  • To identify what was transported, and from where and to where these items went.
  • To show how traded items were either raw or manufactured materials, by connecting facts with those concepts.
  • To explain how players and the products they traded were characteristic of or affected by mercantilism or the triangular trade system in action.

Students first examine representative examples of trading posts and colonies in North America. Then they research and further establish relevant facts about Mercantilism & Triangular Trade and the products and people involved. Finally student (or partner groups) will identify key players involved, mapping their location and detailing how those players were characteristic of or affected by mercantilism during the New France period.
(Note: A word version with sample evaluation grids is available.)

Part A - Trading Posts vs. Colonies
IO 1 Examinephenomenon IO 4 Makecomparisons
As a class, discuss known examples of exploration that led to “trading settlements” and “colonies”.

Examine and note differences between trading settlements and colonies.

View videos on example trading posts and settlements, already placed inside marker points on this map:
  1. Port Royal NS example of an early trading settlement in French Regime
  2. Jamestown, Virginia just as example a lasting colony in English colonies to south

Discuss who (what players) might be involved in each.

Part B - Mercantilism & Triangular Trade ('Relevant' facts)
IO 2 Establishfacts IO 6 Establishconnectsfacts
Keep the focus question in mind, to discover how individuals and groups were involved in the economic aspects of trade and colonization. Use an organizer like Relevant Facts (via a Focus Question) to note general facts and then to isolate relevant and useful information.

Examine the map and read the texts within the arrow shapes, to find out more about each of the typical triangular trade routes that involved New France and its trading posts or colonies.
(Note: Click on the arrow shapes)

Describe the main "legs" of the route (France to New France, New France to West Indies, West Indies to France/Africa), and discuss the differences between legs in terms of direction and purpose.

Identify what was transported, and from where and to where these items went. Determine which products traded were raw or manufactured goods, by connecting documents/facts to one of those concepts. Use RECITUS connections between facts guide or similar organizer if need.

Identify and also predict the different people, groups of people and organizations that would have been involved during each leg of the route. And also who might have been affect by the mercantilist process.

Part C - Focus on players involved in French Regime mercantilism and triangular trade
IO 1 Situatetimespace IO 2 Establishfacts IO 3 Characterizephenomenon
Through "Rigour of historical reasoning" to explain how they were involved in this system.
Students, start by visiting some of the online sources below.
Research the various key “players” involved in triangular trade during the New France era. A player could be a country, a king, merchants or a trading company, an important person, or even those native nations whom Europeans contacted for trade. (Note that a sample legend has been started that you can modify, add to or delete as needed.)

Student Tasks:
Assuming you have copied this map or created a map of your own: Place marker points on your map for each player you can find. (At least 2 players per group or individual). The marker point location should make sense and somehow relate to the player. (For example, to identify the King you might place a marker in France, and even more specifically at the Palace location; for a merchant who traded in a product a marker might be place in a port or perhaps at a shop’ location. Shapes/lines can also be used to identify a group's territory.)

In the description for each marker/shape add texts that:

  • Identify the player involved, what they traded or their role in the trading systems.
  • Explain how players and the products they traded were characteristic of or affected by mercantilism or the triangular trade system in action.

(Note: A word version with sample evaluation grids is available.)

Note 2: This scenario could be used as part of a larger Learning Situation which might ask a students to form an opinion (or interpretation) with regard to a larger essential question. ;-) ;-)

Online Resources

Fishing first brought Europeans

Fur Trade established with between specific Europeans and Native groups

Relationships established between groups and according to treaties
French Colonial Expansion and Franco-Amerindian Alliances http://tinyurl.com/mndxea2

Mercantilism defined and referencing New France Regime players:
Canada in the Making: Compagnie des Cent-Associés:
Mercantilism, Settlement, New France

Life aboard French tall ships

Various products involved:
Brandy, Indians, and Furs http://www.chroniclesofamerica.com/french/brandy_indians_fur.htm
Cod supplemented by wheat, livestock & lumber out of Louisbourg
http://hdl.handle.net/10393/22613 (click PDF, see p. 7, p.16)

Economic Activities Fur Trade
A Brief History of the Fur Trade
Fur Trade at Canadian Encyclopedia http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.com/articles/fur-trade