Beauchamp, Joseph Ovide

Beauchamp was born in Ste. Therese de Blainville, Quebec, in 1820 or 1821 and engaged by the Hudson's Bay Company as a blacksmith at Fort Vancouver in 1843. There he married Marguerite Shasta and had a daughter, Caroline. Marguerite died in 1847 of causes unknown and the following year Beauchamp was transferred to Fort Victoria where he arrived on April 5 and started work the next day. Later the same month he was disabled in an accident in which he lost the tip of one of his fingers. On July 9, 1848 he married an unnamed woman in a group ceremony conducted at Fort Victoria by Reverend Veyret. Beauchamp was frequently reported on the sick list suffering from a pain in his hand as well as the effects of dysentery. In May of 1848 Finlayson reported that, since his arrival from Fort Vancouver, Beauchamp had "behaved himself very insolently on several occasions" and, on July 21 he wrote that he was part of a group "who make a boast of being unruly & insolent". In August of 1850 his daughter, Caroline, was baptised by Father Lempfrit at the fort two weeks before she died of an unnamed ailment. Beauchamp seems to have remained in the Pacific Northwest following his retirement in 1854 where he died on August 1, 1873 at Fort Vancouver.


  • Evans, Mike. "Joseph Ovide Beauchamp." BC Metis Mapping Project.
  • Hudson's Bay Company Archives. "Beauchamp, Joseph Ovide." Biographical Sheets.
  • Watson, Bruce McIntyre. Lives Lived West of the Divide. Kelowna: Centre for Social, Spatial, and Economic Justice, University of British Columbia, 2010.
Graham Brazier