Established in 1775, Cartwright was named after Captain George Cartwright. He was an English merchant and adventurer who established a fish and fur trading business. The settlement of Cartwright provided him with an excellent sheltered harbour and FlagStaff Hill gave him a lookout point from which he could look for privateers. He erected two canons there, both of which are still in place today. The business first established by Cartwright was sold to the Hudson's Bay Company in 1873 and this business still operates in Cartwright today. The Mealy Mountains can be seen from the community. The Eagle River, 20 miles to the southwest, has the best salmon fly fishing in the world. Ten miles to the north is a 56 km stretch of sandy beach which the Vikings called the "Wonderstrands". To the east, lies the Atlantic Ocean and the Gannet Islands Seabird Ecological Reserve - home to 50,000 common murre, 35,000 puffins and 8,000 other birds. Eighteen miles to the east of the community lies Table Bay which is home to the largest colony for breeding eiders in Labrador. The Labrador Fisherman's Union Shrimp Company operates a crab plant which employs 100 - 150 people.The facility also processes whelk.