By Ingeborg Marshall
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Additional resources for A History and Ethnography of the Beothuk
18 Nonetheless, baiter with natives remained a secondary source of income for them. The French Basque Martizan Aristega, who came to "Terre Neuf' (a term designating Newfoundland as well as the Strait of Belle Isle and the Gulf of St Lawrence) in 1597 to fish, procure whale oil, and trade for furs, trucked forty buckskins, forty beaver, and twenty martin pelts for tobacco. 20 No sixteenth-century record positively attests to trade for furs with native people in Newfoundland, though some documents mention trade goods being taken by shipowners or crew in anticipation of barter.
2) Another category of first-hand evidence is information obtained from Beothuk captives. The chief informant was the Beothuk woman Shanawdithit, captured in 1823, who was questioned by William E. " In his enquiries Cormack appears to have focused on the decline of the Beothuk tribe and on Beothuk interactions with the English; in a series of drawings, Shanawdithit has depicted several encounters of this sort. However, since they were done at Cormack's request it is possible that Shanawdithit presented an expurgated version of what she knew.
Their captors were unable to communicate with them and were of the opinion that they had neither money nor religion. Since these seven individuals were travelling in a birchbark canoe east of Newfoundland, though rather far out to sea, it is possible that they were Newfoundland Beothuk. 12 Bembo's report differs in that the seven natives who were travelling in a birchbark boat were picked up not far from England. " They also consumed raw meat and drank blood. Six of them died shortly after their arrival 17 The Sixteenth Century in France, but a surviving boy was brought to the king.