BOND, WILLIAM, HBC captain from the Thameside parish of Rotherhithe; fl. c. 1655–94.
He joined the Company in 1672 as gunner of the Imploy and sailed to Charles Fort, where he wintered before going on the first trading expedition to Port Nelson in the summer of 1673. Bond’s knowledge of the country made him a useful employee, and when he returned to England in 1679 his services would have been retained but for the high value he set upon them after the death of Governor Charles Bayly early in 1680.
By December 1681 Bond’s terms were more reasonable, and in 1682 he was given command of the Craven pink which had been built for service in James Bay. But just before sailing he refused to take the oath of loyalty and to make a promise not to engage in private trade. However, when faced with dismissal, “this young blade” submitted, but his “stubborne Sullen disposition” had aroused the suspicions of the London Committee and he was recalled in 1683. After taking the Albemarle from Charlton Island to Port Nelson during the summer he accordingly returned to England in command of the George.
Bond, restored to favour, commanded the Happy Return in both 1684 and 1685 on successful voyages to and from Port Nelson. He was reprimanded, however, for not keeping company with the Perpetuana Merchant on the outward voyage in 1685. Had he done so he might have prevented her being taken at the western end of Hudson Strait by two French ships under the direction of Claude Bermen* de La Martinière.
On 10 July of the following year, when bound for Charlton Island, the Happy Return was lost in the ice in Hudson Strait, but Bond and his crew reached York Fort (Bourbon), presumably in the Abraham and Robert (Capt. Robert Porten). Bond returned to England in the same year as a passenger in that ship, and in 1687 commanded the Dering on a successful voyage to and from York Fort.
An effort was made in 1688 to recover part of the advantage lost to the French in 1686 when, at a time of peace, Pierre de Troyes had captured the Company’s three forts in James Bay. A new governor, Capt. John Marsh, sailed with Bond in the Churchill, and a new deputy, Capt. Andrew Hamilton, sailed with John Simpson in the Yonge for Albany River where, on account of the treaty of neutrality concluded between the English and French kings in November 1686, they were to live at peace with their French neighbours. Bond, the man of most experience, was to be senior to the deputy governor when in council, and at sea he was to be “Admirall.” In Hudson Strait the ships met the interloper Mary in distress and took her company aboard, including captains John Abraham and John Outlaw, before continuing to Albany River, where they arrived about 10 September. From the beginning the French harassed the English party and in December 1688, when Bond and his mate were hunting partridges, they themselves were “caught like woodcocks.” Later that season the French gained complete victory in Albany River.
Bond was sent overland to Canada where he was held until he was sent to France in 1691. This transfer was no doubt made because of the war which had broken out in 1689, and with the object of depriving the Company of the services of its most experienced captain. Because he had not returned to England by June 1692 the Governor and Committee were suspicious that he was concerned in a French plot against York Fort. If, however, Bond was identical with the “Wm. Bond” who commanded the Greenland Company’s ship George in November 1694, these suspicions could have been unfounded. References to Bond’s wife, Susan, are to be found in the Company’s archives, but nothing further is known about his family.