David Thompson

David Thompson (1770-1857) Canadian cartographer and explorer

David Thompson (1770-1857) Canadian cartographer and explorer

David Thompson [1770–1857]

b. 1770 — Westminster, England
d. 1857 — Longueuil, Canada East

Thompson, a charity pupil at Grey Coat School, London, was apprenticed to the Hudson’s Bay Company [1670–] in 1784. He joined the North West Company as a surveyor in 1797. In 1811 he explored the length of Columbia River, crossing the Continental Divide via the Athabasca Pass.

Thompson was a member of the British-American Boundary survey from 1815 to 1824. Thompson died of poverty at Longuineil, Quebec, in 1857, age 87. He was never on any of the three Thompson Rivers.

David Thompson’s map North-West Territory of the Province of Canada 1814

Sources of biographical information about Thompson:

Thompson is the namesake of the following places in the Mount Robson region:

Events in the Mount Robson region in which Thompson was involved:

  • 1811 David Thompson Athabasca Pass
Works pertinent to the Mount Robson region of which Thompson was author or co-author:

  • —   David Thompson’s Narrative of his explorations in western America, 1784-1812. Joseph Burr Tyrrell, editor. Toronto: Champlain Society, 1916. University of British Columbia

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