Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Resources, Trade, and the Aboriginal Population: Lessons from the 1780s Smallpox Epidemic in the Hudson Bay Region

Contents:

Author Info

  • Ann Carlos

    ()
    (University of Colorado, Boulder)

  • Frank Lewis

    ()
    (Queen's University)

Abstract

We explore the impact of one of the earlier epidemics to hit natives living in the Hudson Bay drainage basin: the smallpox outbreak of 1780-82. We review contemporary descriptions of the epidemic and how Europeans at the time viewed its impact on the native population of the region. We then explore the impact of the epidemic using three approaches. First, we summarize the experience with other smallpox outbreaks including those among so-called "virgin soil" populations. Next we place the epidemic in the context of the fur trade of the region; and finally, we suggest a measure of the population decline based on backward projections of later population estimates and the likely pre-epidemic population given the carrying capacity of the region in terms of large game. Our results for this particular epidemic, as we argue in the concluding section, may have broad implications for the interpretation of pre-contact aboriginal populations and the impact of European-carried disease.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://qed.econ.queensu.ca/working_papers/papers/qed_wp_1231.pdf
File Function: First version 2009
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Queen's University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1231.

as in new window
Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:qed:wpaper:1231

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Kingston, Ontario, K7L 3N6
Phone: (613) 533-2250
Fax: (613) 533-6668
Email:
Web page: http://qed.econ.queensu.ca/
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords: population; native americans; smallpox;

Find related papers by JEL classification:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Carlos, Ann M. & Lewis, Frank D., 1993. "Indians, the Beaver, and the Bay: The Economics of Depletion in the Lands of the Hudson's Bay Company, 1700–1763," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 53(03), pages 465-494, September.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:qed:wpaper:1231. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mark Babcock).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.