Henday, Anthony

Henday, Anthony, explorer (probably b on the Isle of Wight, Eng; fl 1750-62). Henday travelled farther into western Canada than any white person had before him, and his journal contains important glimpses of how the indigenous population lived at that time. A labourer for the Hudson's Bay Company at York Fort [York Factory], Man, he volunteered for a mission to encourage distant tribes to come and trade. Travelling with some Cree, he set out in June 1754 via the Hayes River. The party paddled up the Saskatchewan and then proceeded on foot, apparently along the Battle River valley, meeting many Assiniboine en route.

In the autumn they seem to have been southeast of present-day Red Deer, Alta, when they found a great camp of "Archithinues" (Blackfoot or Gros Ventre). Henday and some of the Cree spent part of the winter nearby. In the spring they descended the North Saskatchewan. Middlemen in the fur trade, the Cree collected furs from other Aboriginals as they travelled eastward. The best were sold at French posts conveniently located on the lower Saskatchewan. The remainder were taken to York, where the party arrived in June 1755. In 1759 Henday went west again for a year, this time with some "Archithinues." He left the HBC's service in 1762 and probably returned to England. Described by Andrew Graham as a "bold, enterprising" man, he felt ill rewarded for his great hardships.

See also Exploration.