Calculation of the Cost of Living at Red River in 1819
by John Pritchard
Manitoba Pageant, April 1962, Volume 7, Number 3
From Selkirk Paper, Provincial Archives of Manitoba
Calculation of the expenses of a man and his wife, together with a man and a maidservant residing on Red River.
Suppose an income of £100 per annum, there will remain to purchase tea, sugar, etc. £11 15/. Ale may be brewed in the country abounding with hops. If the lady is a good housewife she may make her own wines, raspberries, currants, strawberries and other fruits abound in the plains. The sturgeon will supply isinglass, and the maple sugar, and if recipes are wanting I can furnish some excellent ones.
It is proper to observe that this calculation supposes the gentleman and lady to be inactive, therefore any advantages arising from the exertions of either will meet contingencies not herein provided for.
In regard to the employment of the manservant I am confident if his efforts are well directed that in the fourth year the produce of the farm he has cultivated will amply supply the wants of his master's family, and perhaps in some measure reimburse the expense of the preceding years.
N.B. The fat of the buffalo will furnish soap and candles, and the servant man the firewood.
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