Lesson Plans Lesson Plans

The Fur Trade in Maine

Kathleen Neumann, Maine Historical Society, Cumberland County


6-8, 9-12, Postsecondary

  • Science & Engineering -- Life Sciences
  • Science & Engineering -- Earth & Space Sciences
  • Social Studies -- Personal Finance & Economics
  • Social Studies -- Geography
  • Social Studies -- History

1-2 days

  • Pre-1500
  • 1500-1774
  • 1775-1850
  • 1851-1920
  • 1921-today
  • Community
  • Economy
  • Environment/The Land
  • The People/Peopling of Maine

This lesson presents an overview of the history of the fur trade in Maine with a focus on the 17th and 18th centuries, on how fashion influenced that trade, and how that trade impacted Indigenous peoples and the environment.

  • Students will be able to describe the fur trade in colonial North America and its impact on Indigenous communities, European settler-colonists, and the environment.
  • Students will be able to explain why beaver fur was so desirable.
  • Students will answer questions about information from primary sources through close looking and hypothesizing.
  • Students will examine and analyze primary source documents, art, and objects, and use the sources provided to draw informed conclusions and ask informed questions.


Download Lesson Plan