A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about history

Thanksgiving 2012 - The Gin Martini

Things I am thankful for...

overcast 13 °C

Stealing, as I do, posts from my facebook page...

Canadian Thanksgiving this weekend. So in the spirit - along with turkey sausages for dinner this evening - stuff I am thankful for...


As the day wore one - and I had consumed my Turkey sausages, I called my family back in Toronto. I spoke to the family back in Toronto as the clock turned over to 11 PM here in the UK. They were sitting down for Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and all the trimmings. I hung up the phone, knowing they would soon be on to pumpkin pie.

So to you all reading this, regardless of the day or your nationality, I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving. Early October may be the Thanksgiving day for Canada, but we should be aware of what we need to give thanks for every day.


Look up, this is the world you live in. It may be harsh and hard at times, but it can also be beautiful. It gives so many gifts, even when at the time they seem like blows to your chest. Hard lives are hard won.

Thankful for everything that has happened - the good, the bad and the ugly. If it hadn't of happened, I'd be a different man, in a different place, in a different set of circumstances. Maybe it would have been better, maybe it would have been worse. But it wouldn't have been me.

Posted by GregW 17:31 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged history travel_philosophy migration_experiences migration_philosophy Comments (0)

Hudson's Bay's links to London

Canada’s oldest corporation, the Hudson’s Bay Company’s History in London

sunny 10 °C

Back in mid-1600s, two Frenchmen - Pierre-Esprit Radisson and Médard Chouart, Sieur des Groseilliers - were exploring the interior of what is now Northern Canada, working their way inland via the many rivers that flow into Hudson’s Bay. What they discovered was a lot of little animals with soft fur. “Ideal for coats,” they said, and went to find a backer.

The Americans and French weren’t interested, but the English saw a business there. King Charles the second, recently reinstated on the throne after England’s brief flirtation with Republicanism, liked the furs. As a reward to his cousin Prince Rupert of the Rhine for his support during the ongoing civil war, Charles granted Rupert a royal charter to have an exclusive monopoly over the trading rights for the lands which made up the Hudson Bay drainage basin. The date was May 2nd, 1670, and thus was born the Hudson Bay Company, Canada’s oldest corporation.


The company, more colloquially known in Canada as HBC, now specialises in retail, having long ago abandoned the fur trade. It also has moved its headquarters to Toronto. Prior to 1970, however, the company was headquartered in the capital of Charles’ England – London.

There are a number of buildings around London, of which detail can be found on the very extensive Hudson’s Bay Company’s history website. I’ve mapped them out here, after deciding to wander around and visit the various sites.

Prior to 1970’s move, Hudson’s Bay Company was installed at Beaver House near the Bank of England, which no longer exists. Prior to Beaver House, however, HBC could be found at Hudson Bay House, the last incarnation of which can be found on Bishopgate near Liverpool Street Station.


The building still stands today at 60-62-64 Bishopsgate, though there is only one small clue that HBC lived there for a time, is the windvane. It’s a symbol of Canada, and a nod to HBC’s history as a fur trader - The Beaver.


More on HBC’s history can be found at their excellent history website: http://www2.hbc.com/hbcheritage/history/

Posted by GregW 04:38 Archived in England Tagged buildings history Comments (0)

(Entries 1 - 2 of 2) Page [1]