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Memorable Manitobans: Alexander Hunter Murray (1818-1874)

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Alexander Hunter Murray
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Fur trader, explorer.

Born at Kilmun, Argyleshire, Scotland on 22 September 1818, he emigrated to the United States as a young man and served with the American Fur Company. In the spring of 1846 he came up to Fort Garry from Missouri, and joined the Hudson’s Bay Company as senior clerk. In 1847, Chief Factor Murdoch McPherson appointed him to the Mackenzie River district to establish an outpost at Fort Yukon, in Russian Alaska. In later years he managed several Hudson’s Bay Company posts and in 1856 was made Chief Trader. In 1862 he was placed in charge of Lower Fort Garry, where he remained until 1864.

On 23 August 1846, he married Anne Campbell (?-?), daughter of Chief Trader Colin Campbell, whom he met on his journey to the Athabasca District. They had eight children: Elizabeth Murray (1849-?, wife of Ewen McDonald), Helen Hunter Murray (1850-?, wife of W. J. “Big Bear” McLean), Margaret Murray (?-?), Ann Flora Murray (?-?), Archibald James Murray (?-?), James Colin Murray (?-?), Jemima Alexandrina Murray (1856-1886, wife of Samuel L. Bedson), and Alexander Campbell Murray (?-?).

He retired from the fur trade in 1867 and died at his home “Bellevue” near Lower Fort Garry on 20 April 1874.

See also:

“Alexander Hunter Murray” by M. M. Black, The Beaver, outfit 260 (June 1929), 211-13.

Alexander Hunter Murray, Dictionary of Canadian Biography X, 540-41.


Pioneers and Early Citizens of Manitoba, Winnipeg: Manitoba Library Association, 1971.

Biographical Sheet, Hudson’s Bay Company Archives.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 18 November 2018

Memorable Manitobans

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