Free Traders and Independent Traders
Both newly arrived prospectors looking for gold who turned to the fur trade and the large number of HBC and NWC past employees brought about the practice of Free Trading, or Independent Trading, in the fur trade. These traders were not associated with the HBC, but bought and traded furs.
Many of these Free Traders were bought out by the HBC, with a few exceptions like Henry Fuller (Twelve-Foot) Davis who set up his own post across from Fort Dunvegan and continued to trade until he died in 1900.
A second set of Free Traders appeared in the 1880s and the 1890s. This second group of traders used Edmonton as their supply source, unlike the first generation that were supplied from British Columbia.
A third group of Free Traders were established in the Peace country in the 1900s. This group were fur traders that also had farms or other businesses.