Everybody loves a good goose story. How many times have you recounted the time when you shot the whole flock or made that amazing shot?
Your story may not go down in the history books. But then you don’t have the store manager recording your results down in a log book. The Hudson Bay Company Managers were required to keep a log of activities during their tenure at a post. Here are some that I found in the compilation of the journals done by Dr. Toby Morantz of McGill University for the Cree Regional Authority for use by the Cree Cultural Coordinators.
GREAT WHALE RIVER DISTRICT REPORT 1815
In the spring Geese are not found here but a little farther Southward they are numerous.
Tues. May 24,1887 – [Mepille arrived and worked in the oil house] [7 partridges, 3 seals, 5 geese and 12 wavies were caught during the month of May 1887]
102 wavies and 18 geese were caught during the month of Sept. 1890 80 seals, 5 geese, 4 ducks and 1 wavy were caught during the month of May 1896
6 geese and 137 wavies were shot during the month of Sept. 1896 150 fish, 12 ducks, 7 moose, 7 geese and 35 wavies were caught during the month of Sept. 1897
61 seals, 8 partridges, 6 geese and 4 ducks were caught during the month of May 1898
There were 79 wavies, 2 geese and 1 seal caught during the month of July 1899
Port George 1806
May 9 Received three geese from [Staumou] an Indian. Capt. Patashuanoo and Wapmakathinus with a large party of Indians came down the river, when myself and two men secured as many of their sleds as possible, the others fell into the hands of our opponents who met them above our house.
May 20 At different times till this date have receivd a quantity of geese from the Indians. The river ice broke up.
May 26 Receivd a quantity of geese from the hunters.
May 30 Some Indians who have been shooting geese for the Canadians came here and were very quarrelsome and abusive because brandy was refused them.
Jun 7 The whale boat returned with geese from the northward tent
accompanied by Captain Cawpisouiss and his gang, whom she fell in with on her passage, and has secured the whole of their trade.
Fort George 1807
May 7 An Indian lad from the goose tent, came for a farther supply of provisions for Jacob Atkinson. They have seen some geese but kill’d none, and are all starving, this lad has ate nothing for three days last past.
May 14 Supplied the Indians of yesterday and they went away.
May 17 Two Indians came from the goose tent, for some more salt. Received 30 geese from the man who is there to conduct the hunt. May 18 Sent the Indians of yesterday with salt to the goose hunt. May 20 Received geese from home hunters, and sent them some gunpowder, etc.
May 24 The river ice broke and continued in motion most of the day. May 29 Two lads came in with geese, sent them with a canoe to the South branch, to bring in an Indian,
Fort George 1817
May 10 … at present there is only one Indian at the plae for that purpose [to hunt geese] Cutaquis returned. He brought 30 birds but has only seen Nasapaabbino who will soon come in.
May 20 Formerly the goose hunt at this period used to be nearly over, how reverse it is now, not a goose as yet has been brought it; and from the appearance of the weather, will be some time yet ‘ere any can be procured.
May 21 … the Indian of yesterda went away. Furnished him with powder and shot and sent some to other Indians like-wise supplied them with some Provisions to keep them from starving ‘till the geese comes.
half sized canoe, the have got 60 geess at there teant which our sled will bring here the sam time that the take the bark to Long Sandy.
Mistissini APr. 24. 1878
… very strange no Ducks come yet Gees seen again … but sky high the keep at a safe distance six Fish from the Nets to Day.
May 4,1881 … Joseph finished his Canoe lathing To Day saw the first Gees to Day Joseph and Moore had A Shot but got nothing saw Four Deer on the Lake … finished the Beadroom to Day-May 10, 1883 Charley and the Boys visited the Nets brought 95 Fish Mainscum on the sicke list a flock of Gees seen to Day.
Apr. 28,1887 …. Thomas arrived brought 8 MB of Fur has seen Gees to day and we saw a Gull here to day.
May 12,1890 still cold and snowing all day no Summer I think this year not any beare ground yet… 5 Gees seen to day for the first time this Spring.
Apr. 28, 1905 … Old Moar shot 2 grey Gees in the narrows to Day…
One large flock of geese passed today
May 9,1926 had a feast in my house on geese wavie & ducks and Beaver
Apr. 26,1933 first geese seen at the post
May 16,1933 [a Waswanipi Indian hurt eye in a shotgun accident -taken outby plane to hospital in Senneterre – not named]
May 31,1933 reports regarding spring hunts…very discouraging and we hope for better results from far north Indians who have not been in all winter.
Kaanaupscow Reports 1938-41
Apr 29 Sammie at chores also making duck decoys. Saw a couple of geese in p.m.
May 7 Geese and ducks becoming quite plentiful now-still none shot. May 9 Made a checker board and men – will keep a couple of Indians interested in the spring.
Oct 22 Had a try for geese late afternoon but no luck.
Apr 24 The hunters brought me a goose.
Apr 30 This morning I went down to the goose tent to incorage the Indians to kill gees. In the evening sum Indians Came in with goods which I refer tradeing til tomorrow.
Mar 31 A Inden and femely from ye So.erd pecht thair tent hear to kill geas. Now I incoredg all ye Indens I can to gett what geas I can in ye Spring.
Apr 7 Only one hand making fether bags for ye Indens att gouse seson.
Apr 13 Had keld 4 geas by ye nateves which I sarvd out to ye peopel. Came in an Inden from yenoret and femeley to hont geas for ye Facctory and aquented me of tow of our gus hunters dead and wife and childor of one a very hard winter for vettels among tham.
Apr 14 I sarvd five Indens powder and shoat to kill geas.
Apr 20 2 imployd a honting goat tow geas.
Apr 22 Our Indens is all gon to ye gous tents.
Apr 23 Tow Indens from ye Eastard to hunt geas they aquented one more of our gous huntors wod coumd bout only thay could not travell
wth thair femeleys so mouch watter upon ye ground.
Apr 24 I traded ye fore sayd Indens goods & sarvd tham powder & shoat to kill geas.
Apr 25 Foully alowance of geas to our people ye first we have had since ye 12th of Nov. as pr. mess book.
Àp 27 A Inden and femely from ye Eastard to keel geas payd me his dt. which was 5 skins 1 /2.
Apr 28 Employd about our shad [they are building a shed] and salted 60 geas.
May 5 Very few geas keeld by ye Nateves.
May 15 Very few geas keld.
May 19 Our gouce seson is all most over. Soum Indens traded thair feathers for brandy.
May 20 40 fish, gouse honters all came home. Ye seson over I have only 400 kild this spring. A power (poor) seson indead.
May 19 Our gouce seson is all most over. Soum Indens traded thair feathers for brandy.
May 20 40 fish, gouse honters all came home. Ye seson over I have only 400 kild this spring. A power seson indead.
Mar 31, 3 Indens and familys from the noret apitcht thair tents near to hount gease for me I in coredge tham all I can to kele what pouble ? I can geet.
Apr 23, I sarved 20 Indens powder and shoat to kill geas and thay all went to the goase tents and the day being St. Georges Day brocht our second cask of strong bear ….
Apr 26, The first gous was kild by an Inden in the evening which I gave him a botel of brandy for which is coustemaire.
May 2,1 have had no geas brought in by the Indens this two day but thair festing and drinking with the Richmond Capt. I shall be 200 geas by it short as the geas fley thick for I had 25 Indens honting and 3 of them that came from the noret stays to hount which make 28 honters. I wish Mr. Potts treat had faling in soum other time of the year.
May 3, Salted 103 geas brought into day.
May 4, Salted 100 geas.
May 5, The Indens brought in 70 geas.
May 6, Salted 189 geas.
May 22, Our people a drawing of our blodey pickill and making fresh pickell for Do. I have had 1680 gease keeld att the East main this year and 550 brought from Albany in the fall which made 2230 geas. Aug 30, Came in 4 cannows from the southerd. I sarved them all powder and shoat to keel gees. I gave them about as usell and sent them away.
May 11 Salted 50 gees.
May 15 Our gouse honters make but badly out salted 120 geas brought to day by the Indians.
May 16 Soum more of our honting Indians came in I sarved tham out pouder to keel geese.
May 18 Verey few geas flyes and our river ice is torned so roten and foull of hols that the Indians dar not crosit without being in danger of falling in so our honters on that sied is lefte of killing gees.
May 19 And we salted 140 geas.
May 20 Our river in moshon.
Apr.20,Sat. 3 Indians from the noret to trad and 3 of our Gouse honters Pitcht thire tent hear to kell gease for the factory.
Apr.28, Sun. and our Indian gouse honters want all away to the gouse tents and I sarved tham all powder and gave all the encoregment I could to gett what gease I can.
May 1,Wed. The first goose was keld and brought in by a Indian and I gave him a botel of brandy.
May 2,Thu. but few gease flyes only two brought in by the Indians one hand a making small fether baggs for the Indians.
May 3,Fri. a great many gease fly to the noret.
May 4,Sat. sum gease brought in by the Indians and we Salted 55 for few flyes and what do’s verey high.
May 16,Thu. few gease brought in by the Indians for the season is moast over.
May 18,Sat. goat 7 fish and our River Ice is goat as loo as the River’s mouth.
May 19,Sun. The Indians brought in 30 gease from the Southered verey few flyes.
May 20,Mon. our feshermen went in the Cannow and Sett 3 netts… The Indians came in with sume gease we have salted 600.
May.5,Fri. I have 18 Men now to Kill gees..Came an Indian and his
wife and Traded some Beavor and Martons.
May.7,Sun. The Gees beginning to fly thick.Came in an Indian and
traded a few furs and took up to Hunt Gees.
May.12.Fri. Came in 2 Indians and Traded a few Beaver and Martons and went away….. pickled a Cast qt. 105 gees.
May.13.Sat. pickled one Cask qt. 88 Gees.
May. 15,Mon. pickled one Cask qt. 110 Gees. Compleated palisading the Burying place Round it is 15 foot Sq.
May 17. Wed. 104 Gees.
May. 18, Thu. Serving out powder having got Gees plenty but the Indians will fall short of there Number greatly.
Apr. 29, Tue. The Indians brought in 2 Gees the forst this spring. Apr.30 4 gees…the snow goes fast away got a fox in good season. May.3, Sat. Came In an Indian & his family and brought in a preaty good Trade I gave him Several things he Cries out Very Much of a bad winter.
May.4, Sun. The Indians Came from the Marsh for provisions no gees to be got ( From Mon. on there is report almost every day of: “ reed, gees from the Indians “ but no number is given )
May. 12, Sat. A good many geas from the Indians and Sarved out more powder.
May. 14, Mon. River a bricking up.
May. 15, Tue. Strict watch Red. a Great Many Gees from the Indians. May.24, Thu. a great many gees from the Indians & Served out more powder & shot.
May.25, Fri. a Cask of geese qt. 130.
May.29, Tue. and Some of them Came & Tented att the House the Goose Season being partly over.
May 31, Thu. Pickled 2 Casks of geese
Oct.18,Fri. the North ward Indians Came in for there Debt no gees to be seen ( Reed. 233 geese for the season )
Apr.26, Sun. see one Goos.
Apr.27, Mon. fishing Creek is brock up the Indians brought in the forst Goose Served out powder & Shott to 10 Indians and gave them each Man a Bottle of Brandy & Tobacco as usual in order to Kill Gees ( they leave for the Marsh the next day )
May.2,Sun. Reed. 2 Gees from the Marsh.
May.4,Tue. with a Strong thaw a Good Many Gees flew to Day.
Rupert House 1781
Apr. 16: One Indian came in for the goose hunt.
Apr. 18: Capn. CABBAGE and his family came in for the goose hunt.
Apr. 29: 20 geese from Indians.
Apr. 30: Got 2 geese from Indians.
May 10: 34 geese from the Ind.
May 12: 64 geese by the hunters and 4 by self.
May 16: 64 geese from the Indians.
May 17: Much ice driving down the river.
May 18: The ice almost out of the river.
May 20: 47 geese from the Indians.
May 22: Self hunting. Got 2 geese.
May 24: 30 geese from the Indians. Recvd a letter from Mr. Atkinson by an Indian.
May 25: Self hunting. Got 5 geese and 26 from the hunters.
May 28: All the hunters came in. No geese flying. Gave them their concluding hunting brandy.
Rupert House 1784
May 1: Served the Inds powder and shott to hunt geese.
May 2: Falconer went for East Main alone, as no Indians could be got at that season of the year to go with him. The hunters went to the marsh to hunt the same day.
May 3: Hunting but without success.
May 4: See some geese. The first this spring.
May 6: Hunting brot 3 geese.
May 9: 16 geese from the hunters.
May 10: Hunting, brot 4 geese.
May 12: 63 geese from the hunters. Employed salting them.
May 13: 3 geese.
May 15: 64 geese from the hunters.
May 19: 65 geese from the hunters.
May 21:1 goose.
May 23: The ice beginning to break in the river.
May 24: 67 geese from the hunters.
May 25: 17 geese from the hunters.
May 26: Employed in hunting. Brot 4 geese, 30 geese from the hunters. May 28: Brot 3 geese. 60 from the hunters.
May 29: An Indian and his wife came down the river. Going to East Main to trade, but as the ice is not yet gone from the shore he is to go back for a few days longer.
May 30: The Indn of yesterday went away. Sent a little tobacco by him to WAPACHU.
June 2: 43 geese from the hunters.
June 4: Hunters all came in but brot no geese