This document presents the management plan for York Factory National Historic Site of Canada. Its purpose is to provide a framework for management of this nationally significant heritage place, including measures to ensure its commemorative integrity and provide memorable and meaningful visitor experiences.
York Factory (1684 – 1957) was one of the oldest and most important fur trade establishments of the Hudson’s Bay Company and a large, vibrant community, known as Kihci-wâskâhikan in the Cree language. Today York Factory is a national historic site administered by Parks Canada. Situated on the Hayes River, a Canadian Heritage River, and near Hudson Bay, York Factory is an adventure travel destination for canoeists and fly-in visitors. It is a destination of another kind, a homeland to many First Nations people of western Hudson Bay. The development of this management plan involved the exchange of information and ideas among Parks Canada staff from a number of research and management functions, First Nations communities associated with York Factory, tour operators and outfitters, professional engineers and scientists outside of Parks Canada, and interested public.
The management plan is founded on a site vision statement for York Factory National Historic Site. Objectives, directions and actions describe how the vision will be achieved. Heritage conservation in the face of considerable riverbank erosion, permafrost degradation and other environmental threats at the site is a central component of this management plan.
The vision sees York Factory National Historic Site promoted and managed as an adventure travel destination where people arrive knowing it is a place of national significance and leave with a lasting memory of their personal journey, the importance of York Factory, and support for its protection. The history of the fur trade industry and its impacts on the peoples and land will be told as it relates to York Factory. First Nations’ stories of York Factory will be an integral part of the site’s presentation. Because of its remoteness, few Canadians will have an opportunity to visit this place. Thus outreach will be a critical part of telling the story of York Factory. The Depot and other buildings and archaeological remains of York Factory, the cemetery, and the spirit of place will be protected for the long-term. Research, traditional knowledge and monitoring will be integral to the management of York Factory National Historic Site, improving our understanding of its history, its cultural resources and its environmental threats. Partnering and public involvement, particularly with the First Nations communities associated with York Factory, tour operators and outfitters, and related research interests, will be vital to ensuring commemorative integrity and creating meaningful visitor experiences.
The implementation of this management plan over the coming years will lead to the achievement of the site’s vision.