By Ingeborg Marshall
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Additional resources for A History and Ethnography of the Beothuk
The people who lived there were smaller and friendlier. Crignon's contention that the native people on the south coast were taller and less friendly than those who lived on the east coast has introduced the idea that two different populations lived on the island. Hoffman believed that the south coast was inhabited by Indians and the east coast by Inuit. 35 Neither of these interpretations is supported by archaeological or historic evidence (see Part Two). Inuit remains on the Newfoundland east and north-east coast predate the sixteenth century, and there are no archaeological or historical records of an extensive Micmac presence in southern Newfoundland before 1600.
Guy chose Cupids in Conception Bay as the site of the first officially sanctioned settlement on the island. 14 However, establishing the settlement proved to be costlier than he had anticipated, and, anxious to make it selfsufficient, Guy reconsidered. I5 At the beginning of the seventeenth century, the fur trade was one of the few meaningful links between Europeans and native people and had become an important feature in their relations. "16 While some native groups had certainly been unprepared for baiter, many others on the Atlantic seaboard soon adapted to the Europeans' quest for furs.
Considering the large profits reaped in the fur trade elsewhere on the Atlantic coast, it is not unreasonable to assume that ships that came into Newfoundland waters would have expected comparable trade opportunities with the indigenous population of the island. But while Beothuk were occasionally referred to in the early 15005, between the 15505 and 15805 no trade ventures with, or even 23 The Sixteenth Century sightings of, Beothuk are recorded. It has therefore been concluded that the Beothuk deliberately avoided meetings and disappeared from beaches that were easily accessible to European ships.