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THE LIFE OF HON. RIX ROBBINSON A PIONEER OF WESTERN MICHIGAN

BY GEORGE H. WHITE

As subsequent events show it was a part also of his plan then to cover the whole country east of the Rocky Mountains, next to the northern boundary, which then was one of the principal sources of supply of the Hudson's Bay Company, with stations, and then secure as far as he readily could, the services of the independent traders, as employe's, and compel the others to seek his employ by putting, in each instance, one of his best men in the neighborhood of such trader, giving him unlimited supplies, with directions to overbid such with the Indians, each time, and compel him thereby to either leave because of lack of business or seek his employ; but at this time, 1818, he had not got so far as to develop this last portion of his plan. Al this time there was a point several hundred miles away, and very near to the St. Peter's river and to the Hudson Bay Company's post, that it was essential to his plans to have occupied. Thus far, each one who had been sent there had been intimidated and driven off, without in any manner getting up any trade with the Indians there. At this time his two real resident partners at the west were Ramsey Crooks, who was in New York city most of the time as purchasing agent of the Mackinac depot of the company, and Robert Stuart, who managed the affairs at the west from Mackinac. It occurred to Mr. Astor that Robinson, who was then a large, powerful young man of about 30 years of age, over six feet tall, of splendid physical presence, apparently a courageous person, somewhat acquainted with the Indian language and habits, and a little acquainted with Indian trading and much so with men. a well informed young man, might succeed in holding the post, and resist their attempts at driving away by intimidation.

Michigan


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