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Closed HBC Post

Pronounced Ness-wess-kaw
Population 0
Location Lac de la Marée on Eastmain River
Other Names Neoskweska, Nesaskwasau

An inland post that was supplied out of Rupert House using the Rupert Brigade for most of its short life. Its full history is not known but we do know that it operated in the periods 1793-1820 and 1929-1939. It also apparently operated for an unknown period of time as the replacement for Nitchequon Post, which had closed for short while in 1913. After Neoskweskau's last closure, possibly in the 1950s, many Cree residents went to Mistissini and Nemiscau

Nitchequon was located far east beyond the headwaters of the Eastmain River in an area once considered Labrador. Spring breakup was so late and fall freezeup so early and the journey so long that the brigade could barely make the round trip to Rupert's House. The Post was simply uneconomical to the HBC and it was closed.

Camp Keewaydin's visits in the late 1960s still found buildings standing. Dan Carpenter Jr. recalls talking to Glen Speers, the long-serving manager of the HBC post in Mistassini, in 1970. At the time, Speers explained that he had asked one of the hunting families to burn down the remaining building (shown below) as it had become unsafe. 

Photo: Abandoned HBC post at Neoskweskau post, 1967 Abandoned HBC Post at Neoskweskau, 1967.


Photo: Dan Carpenter Jr.


Sources: Grand Council of the Crees, Energy Mines and Resources Canada, Strangers Devour the Land by Boyce Richardson, Hudson's Bay Company Archives, Dan Carpenter Jr., Fur Trader's Story by J.W. Anderson.

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