Die Stromschnellen von St Marie (The Rapids Of St Mary), Frank Buchser, 1868
By kind permission of the Kunsthaus Art Gallery, Zurich, Switzerland
This website was created by teacher Peter White for the Algoma District School Board
In 1846 Sault Ste. Marie was a tiny settlement. There were no hotels or banks and one of the only stores was run by Henry Schoolcraft's brother James.
And since there were no banks, James Schoolcraft also made loans of money to people in the community. One of the people who borrowed money from James Schoolcraft was John Tanner.
In his paper, "Return to "civilization": John Tanner's Troubled Years at Sault Ste. Marie," John Fierst describes how this situation made life more difficult for John Tanner.
Henry Schoolcraft, James' older brother, hired John Tanner as an interpreter between English and Anishnaabe speakers.
When Henry paid John for being an Interpreter, instead of giving him money he would give him vouchers that could only be used in his brother's store rather than money that Tanner could spend anywhere.
Then, when John bought things at James' store he would be charged more than anyone else in order to pay back the old loan.
John Tanner believed this was unfair and that he was being taken advantage of. What do you think?
Sault Ste Marie from the canal on the American side c 1860 John Herbert Caddy, Peter Winkworth Collection of Canadiana, 2002 Acquisition, National Library and Archives, C-150747