Hudson Bay Company was founded in 1670, making it one of the oldest commercial companies in the world. It was incorporated by the English Royal Charter and at one point it controlled vast amounts of land. The Hudson Bay Company is a fur trading business, but it also functioned as a de facto Government in many parts of the world. Many charters granted to the Hudson Bay Company were located in Canada.
On this day January 13th, 1849, the Hudson Bay Company was granted a royal charter for Vancouver Island. During the 1820’s and 1830’s the Hudson Bay Company controlled a majority of the trading operations based from their headquarters in Fort Vancouver. However, It wasn’t until March 11th, 1850 that Richard Blanshard formally took office as governor of Vancouver Island. Blanshard was a puppet for the Hudson Bay Company.
Later Vancouver Island became known as Fort Victoria, but reverted back to Vancouver Island. It is named after British explorer George Vancouver. Vancouver Island had an enormously bustling economy because of the fur trade, but it declined following the Cariboo Gold Rush in the early 1860’s. Vancouver’s economy is upheld by its logging industry, fishing, and tourists who are drawn by scuba diving and skiing.