The Indian Trade Shop was an important part of Fort Vancouver. It served as a shop for Native Americans near the fort to come exchange different kinds of animal furs for many useful European goods of all shapes and sizes, from Blankets to powder flasks to beads. The doctor is in charge of the Trade Shop. The Indian Trade Shop is where the Chief Trader would start trades and determine how many beaver pelts it would take to earn a specific item. The traders used the bartering system because coins were scarce in the Oregon Country. Early in the fur business, European companies depended on the Native Americans to trap animals for their furs and trade them. As Europeans continued to advance in their trapping skills they depended more on “free” trappers who were not under contract to the company.
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