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b. 16 April 1760 in Lausanne, Switzerland


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APTHORP, ALEXANDER, warehouse-keeper for the HBC at York Fort, 1714–18; member of James Knight’s expedition; d. c. 1720.

Alexander Apthorp was with James Knight in 1714 when, on behalf of the HBC, he accepted from the French the restoration of York Fort (Fort Bourbon) according to the provision made in the treaty of Utrecht. Little is known about Apthorp, whose surviving York Fort account books for 1714–17 are excellent examples of the type of book-keeping practised in Hudson Bay in the 18th century Apthorp’s only surviving letter, which is not as lucid as his accounts, describes the effect of the flood at York Fort in the spring of 1715.

In 1718 Apthorp returned to London with Knight who was planning an expedition to the north of Churchill in search of the Strait of Anian and the copper and gold deposits he had learned about from the Northern Indians Knight sailed from London in 1719 accompanied by Apthorp, one of the seven members of the expedition who have been identified. The expedition’s two ships met with disaster near the southeast corner of Marble Island in 1720; the exact fate of Apthorp and his companions remains unknown.

Alice M. Johnson

HBC Arch B.239/d/7–9 (York account books, 1714–17) HBRS, XXV (Davies and Johnson), 51–53 (Apthorp’s letter to the company).

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Cite This Article

Alice M. Johnson, “APTHORP, ALEXANDER,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 2, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed April 16, 2024, http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/apthorp_alexander_2E.html.

The citation above shows the format for footnotes and endnotes according to the Chicago manual of style (16th edition). Information to be used in other citation formats:

Permalink:   http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/apthorp_alexander_2E.html
Author of Article:   Alice M. Johnson
Title of Article:   APTHORP, ALEXANDER
Publication Name:   Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 2
Publisher:   University of Toronto/Université Laval
Year of publication:   1969
Year of revision:   1982
Access Date:   April 16, 2024