Trade routes example: Hopewell Exchange System - At its greatest extent, the Hopewell exchange system ran from the Southeastern United States into the southeastern Canadian shores of Lake Ontario . Within this area, societies participated in a high degree of exchange with the highest amount of activity along the waterways serving as their major transportation routes. The Hopewell exchange system traded materials from all over the United States. Mining: Kives, B. “Discovery shows natives mined in province’s north,” Winnipeg Free Press, A6 July 26, 2006. Empires: Aztec, Inca, southern US Federations: Iroquoian League of Nations, Blackfoot Confederacy Fuel burning lamps: Inuit – over 1,000 yrs ago Items: springy mattresses, etc.
Intentional Biological warfare – colonists intentionally infected blankets with disease and gave them as gifts to various First Nations. First Nations lived in a political equilibrium before Europeans arrived and had only but minor skirmishes along borders. With the Europeans settling, diseases and wars affecting populations, the equilibrium was destroyed and wars began to break out between First Nations.
Ojibwe/Dakota war – fight for control of lucrative fur trade region West coast – fur trade, fish economy competition with Europeans, and eventual shift to wage economy (FNs become major workforce in fisheries and forestry industries) British Fur Trade control effort: imperial control, limiting trade to only five posts, and exclusive licensing. In spite of this, unlicensed traders continued to operate. Royal Proclamation: land is set aside for First Nations people, illegal for non-First Nations to take land & the government has exclusive right to negotiate treaties Québec Act: This act was an extension of the Royal Proclamation meant to push Québec's boundaries into Aboriginal land located past the Great Lakes into the Ohio and Mississippi River valleys. It has been interpreted that the spirit of the Royal Proclamation was to be kept in acquiring Aboriginal land for the British. From the British perspective, it had two goals: to keep French Canadian neutral in the coming uprising in the Thirteen Colonies, and to keep Aboriginal peoples on the side of the British. Settlers in the Thirteen Colonies were upset by British encroachment into Aboriginal lands that they considered to be theirs, and considered the Québec Act to be one of the &quot; Intolerable Acts &quot;, which were a direct cause of the American Revolution .
As the rivalry between the Hudson’s Bay Company and the Nor’West Company flared, the Cree, Assiniboine, and Ojibway began to exercise their own Aboriginal fur trade networks. As middlemen, they monopolized the inland trade around the most important trade center of the Western interior during that time – York Factory. The Cree and Assiniboine were not dependent on European goods or the traders. They dictated the terms of reference for trade to the European traders who had become dependent on the fish caribou and geese supplied to them by the hunters. The European traders needed to learn about and adapt to: First Nations cultures; First Nations languages; First Nations ways of life Made Beaver currency established previously by First Nations people Assiniboine Bison Monopoly (crop burning around colonial forts to ensure dependency on Assiniboine traders) Jay Treaty - To prevent war with the U.S. over Aboriginal land rights and the creation of a 'buffer' state between setters and Aboriginals, Britain negotiated a peace agreement. They agreed to remove all Crown officials from their posts south of the Great Lakes by June 1796. In return, the British obtained permission for Aboriginals to freely cross the Canada-U.S. border. In recent times, the U.S. government has seen the Jay Treaty as an agreement that gives status Indians the right to freely work and live across the border. However, the Canadian government does not.
The Fur Trade economy only worked successfully and sustainably when First nations had “control” of the land. As more settlers came and took greater control of land and resources, the entire economy fell into decline. Hardships - Former enemies of the victorious British, the Mi'kmaq and Maliseet, were simply ignored, left to find their own way in the rapidly changing world. Dispossessed of much of their land, separated from resources and impoverished, they were also ravaged by disease, and in the early 1800s they seemed to be on the road to virtual extinction. Battle of Seven Oaks – Marks the birth of the Métis Nation As employees of both the Hudson's Bay Company and the North West Company, the Metis began to settle along the Assiniboine and Red Rivers. In 1811, a major shareholder in the Hudson's Bay Company, Lord Selkirk requested and received land for settlement. It included 116,000 square miles which included much of what is now Southern Manitoba. With the arrival of settlers in 1812 new tensions began to surface which ultimately would force the Metis to establish themselves as a force in the region. By 1800, the Metis had consolidated themselves as a cultural group on the western prairies.By 1810, the Metis had begun to supply fur trading forts with pemmican provisions. When the settlers came into hard times in their first few winters it became evident that Fort Douglas required provisions for itself. The then Governor of Assiniboia, Miles McDonald, in January 1814 issued a proclamation prohibiting the export of pemmican from Assiniboia. The Pemmican Proclamation of 1814 seriously threatened the economic livelihood of the Metis because they depended on the pemmican trade for their own livelihood. Many Metis and the employees of the Northwest Company were in opposition to the Hudson's Bay Company's proclamation. When Cuthbert Grant and some of his men were seen trying to avoid Fort Douglas on their way to Fort Bas de la Riviere on Lake Winnipeg, Governor Semple and twenty-four of his men rode out to intercept Grant and his men. A shot was fired and twenty minutes later twenty settlers lay dead while only two of Grant's men were killed. 1817-1900s – Treaties were negotiated as Nation to Nation agreements. Canada never fully respected the obligations of treaties nor their strict legal definition. 1850 – Beaver hats out of fashion in Europe – ends the fur trade economy 1857 – DISINTEGRATION. The Gradual Civilization Act of 1857 began the involvement of the federal government in the education of First Nations people. It provided for the voluntary enfranchisement — freedom from Indian status — of individuals of good character as determined by a board of examiners. Upon enfranchisement, volunteers would no longer be considered 'Indians' and would acquire instead the rights common to ordinary, non-Aboriginal settlers. In addition, they would take a portion of tribal land with them. They and such property would no longer be 'Indian' in the eyes of the law. Reformers saw enfranchisement as a privilege, not something to be acquired lightly. The enfranchisement policy was a direct attack on the social cohesion of Aboriginal nations, and it shattered the partnership for development that had existed between the Crown and Aboriginal peoples up to that point. 1869 – SEGREGATION. The Gradual Enfranchisement Act of 1869 replaced the traditional First Nation governments with elected chiefs and councillors. Under this Act, First Nations ceased to be nations. All decisions that First Nation leaders made needed the approval of either the federally appointed “Indian agent” or the minister responsible for “Indian affairs,” neither of which had sufficient, if any at all, accountability. The lack of accountability led to many forms of abuse and misuse of power. 1870 – ASSIMILATION. The Manitoba Act with Louis Riel’s human rights concepts and acceptance into the Dominion of Canada under the trust and promise that the Métis Nation would be respected. Canada sought to ensure it had better control over lands and resources and did not allow for the forth right of Louis Riel’s List of Rights (control over public lands). The Métis people were led to believe that they would receive compensation for this setback by being awarded a PROMISED 1.4 million acre land grant. The Manitoba Act became a powerful tool in eliminating Métis power over the new province. Repeated amendments to the Manitoba Act eroded Métis land rights with each amendment. In an effort to deal with Métis land rights issues once and for all, the government of Canada implemented a land scrip system to issue out the 1.4 million acres either as land or money in 1871. The original land for the land scrip was divided up and allocated without any consultation or care for existing occupants of the lands in question. Repeated census calculations eventually came up with the figure of 240 acres per Métis. The land scrip issue had extended over 3 years, through two elections and came to a halt in 1874, when it was established that most of the land that was to be used for the land scrip had already been claimed by Ontario settlers and parishes. Most of the remaining land claim issues for the Métis were settled via money scrips, which offered $1.00 per acre. During this process, the government of Canada utilized fraudulent and illegal acquisitions of Métis land scrip. Under the Manitoba Act, 90% of the land grants were passed into the hands of speculators, an illegal arrangement. In addition to this, Canada allowed waves of English speaking settlers (Orangemen) from Ontario to enter into Manitoba. These new settlers were “anti-Catholic, anti-French and racist.” 1876 – OPPRESSION. The first Indian Act of 1876 further disrupted First Nation communities by implementing a forced agenda of oppression and control. This act prohibited “Indians” from owning land, doing business, controlling their own resources among many other denial of rights awarded to general Canadians. This act set the framework for totalitarian governance by the government appointed Indian Agent. The Indian Agent was granted all power to make all decisions as he/she saw fit from day to day. Most Indian Agents were officers of the crown who had been previously punished for various offences (including criminal). Without any accountability and having demonstrated questionable moral integrity, the Indian Agents were enabled to abuse their power and frequently did. 1880 – OPPRESSION. T he Indian Act was amended to outlaw potlatches, restrict the sale of agricultural products by Indians, and prohibit the purchase of guns and ammunition by Indians. 1885 - armed resistance to continual erosion of nationhood, rights and land title, which ultimately ended with the defeat of the Métis nation when the Canadian military, 8,000 in number, descended upon the 800 resistance fighters. Louis Riel, respected leader and visionary for his people, as well as the father of Manitoba, was executed. 1890 – OPPRESSION. Following the defeat of the Métis and execution of Louis Riel, a substantial amount of racism and bigotry existed against the Métis and French alike. This culminated further in 1890 with the Manitoba Official Language Act, where the new Manitoba government enforced a unilingual school system and government, effectively outlawing the French language, and by association, the Michif language from schools and public institutions.
1900’s – DISCRIMINATION. In the 1900’s, the Canadian government, through the Indian agents, attempted to push the Aboriginal peoples into agriculture. Seeing no other alternative source of economy, the people worked earnestly in an attempt to make agriculture succeed. Though small successes were seen, the attempt ultimately failed for several critical reasons: The government did not provide suitable land for agriculture nor enough land, period. The government did not provide sufficient equipment or seed. Any “Indian” land that managed to become productive was sold off to non-Indian farmers. Restrictions were placed on sale of produce and “Indian” use of new technologies that would otherwise increase productivity. 1914 – Permit system. These restrictions were enforced via an amendment to the Indian Act in 1914 that only allowed Indians to purchase or sell any and all agriculture equipment and products including groceries, through an Indian Agent authorized permit. Any entrepreneurial or business dealings that Indians had attempted were ultimately destroyed by the Indian Agents. Indian Agents destroyed entrepreneurship by withholding all incomes and sale monies Indians earned – pocketing most and giving only what would be just enough to ensure the Indians would not starve. Many Indian Agents became very rich through this process. The permit system was only repealed in 1995 – only five years before the dawn of the new millennium. 1920 – ASSIMILATION. In 1920, it had been made into law that all First Nation children were to be forcibly removed from their homes and placed into residential schools. This law was put into effect because prior to this, the schools were optional and parents had begun to opt out of the schools when they discovered abuses. Canada’s response to the allegations of abuse was to ignore the allegations and enforce the schooling system upon the people. The schools were often under funded, resulting in malnutrition of the children and a lower standard of cleanliness. The mortality rate of children in these schools was as high as 40% - due to death from disease, malnutrition, and suicide. The last residential school, and most notorious for physical and sexual abuses, was closed only in 1996. For nearly 100 years, First Nations people had to endure forced separation from their children into a system that subjected them into shame of their culture, their heritage, their peoples, and their language. The residential school era created entire generations of children who grew up to feel disconnected from their communities, people, and culture. Low self-esteem plagued First Nation communities like a swiftly growing cancer. This generated a vast number of social problems and created a cycle and mentality of dependency upon the government. At the same time, a deep mistrust and resentment of the education system had been firmly rooted – leading to further social ills (low educational attainment). The complete lack of accountability by residential school administrators resulted in some of the worst human rights abuses in Canada. First Nation communities and people are still trying to heal from these wounds and scars. 1951 – Indian Act revised to limit coverage of First Nations people – excluded women who married non-First Nations men (they lost their status). This was not rescinded until 1985. 1960 – prior to this First Nations people had to forsake their treaty rights and identities to vote. This also would forcibly remove them from their families and communities. 1960’s – the 60’s scoop. Throughout the 1960’s, First Nation babies, by the hundreds, born in Manitoba were pronounced stillborn to their mothers by doctors in a conspiracy to remove the very much alive babies from their parents and give them to adoption agencies that were working with CFS. This was done to profit from the high trendy interest of Americans and Europeans who wanted to adopt “Indian babies.” Many of these children were never heard from again and many others could never trace their roots or find their birth parents. 1996 – The last residential closed was also the one that had the worst reputation for abuse and human rights violations.
Ace Aboriginal Awareness Li
ABORIGINAL CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE: Aboriginal History M arch 11, 2010
Agenda <ul><li>Life before European exploration </li></ul><ul><li>Pre-1700 </li></ul><ul><li>1700-1800 </li></ul><ul><li>1800-1900 (start of assimilation and cultural genocide) </li></ul><ul><li>1900-2000 </li></ul><ul><li>Questions </li></ul>
Life before “exploration” <ul><li>Myth: there were no economies or civilisations before explorers came to north America. </li></ul><ul><li>Truth: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Nations with laws and customs existed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Borders, alliances and diplomacy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Currencies, continental trade and trade routes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Some evidence of international, overseas trade (mostly around the far northern hemisphere) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ecologically sustainable technologies – the kind only in the 21 st century people are cluing into </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Trade shows </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Debt and credit systems </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mining sites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Empires and Federations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Farming practices </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Toys, fuel burning lamps, cooking utensils, dishes, housing cold traps/vents, etc. </li></ul></ul>
Timeline Thriving Aboriginal Economies & Societies Contact Cooperation + integration = UNITY Historically, never happened This would have been ideal Thriving Aboriginal Economies & Societies Contact Disintegration – Segregation – Assimilation – Oppression – Discrimination Context of multi-generational effects Sadly, this is what actually happened
Timeline – Pre-1700 Thriving Aboriginal Economies & Societies Contact Wars, disease, settlers, etc. 16 th and 17 th centuries 1497 J. Chabot, NFLD 1534 J. Cartier 1541 1 st European settlement 1609 Champlain supports Algonquin vs Iroquois 1634-40 Intentional biological warfare 1630’s Fur trading becomes popular 1670 Hudson Bay Co. established Dakota Sioux vs Huron & Ottawa 1689 French vs English War starts 1696 Fur trading ceased for 20 years 1670-1700 Political equilibrium disrupted
Timeline: 1700 – 1800 1700s Ojibwe vs Dakota war 1740s Métis origins, Michif Micmac gift economy West coast First Nations fur trade with Russia, France, Britain 1754 French + FN allies vs British 1755 Acadian expulsion by British 1760 British defeat New France 1763 British fur trade control Royal Proclamation 1774 Québec Act 1784 Nor’West Company est.
Timeline: 1700 – 1800 1700s Ojibwe vs Dakota war 1740s Métis origins, Michif Micmac gift economy West coast First Nations fur trade with Russia, France, Britain 1754 French + FN allies vs British 1755 Acadian expulsion by British 1760 British defeat New France 1763 British fur trade control Royal Proclamation 1774 Québec Act 1784 Nor’West Company est. 1784-1800 First Nation Fur Trade Economy 1794 Jay Treaty
Timeline: 1800 – 1900 1800s Gradual fur trade decline 1812 War of 1812 1815 End of 1812 war: start of hardship for some 1816 Battle of Seven Oaks 1850 End of the Fur Trade 1857 Gradual Civilization Act 1867 Dominion of Canada is established 1869 Gradual Enfranchisement Act 1870 Manitoba Act 1874 Land Scrip fiasco Red River settlers begin to identify as a separate culture 1876 First Indian Act 1880 Indian Act Revisions 1880’s Bison herds decimated 1885 Pass System established Métis defeated 1890 MB Official Language Act
Timeline: 1900 – 2000 1900s Agriculture program 1914 Revision of Indian Act 1920 Residential Schools made law 1951 Revision of Indian Act 1960 For the first time, FNs people are allowed to vote Permit system introduced 1960s Stolen children 1995 Permit system repealed 1996 Last residential school closed Pass system repealed
Conclusion <ul><li>Accurate look at history explains current socio-economic issues </li></ul><ul><li>Modern discrimination, stereotypes, ignorance and racism do not help change or break the cycle of poverty and depression that hundreds of years of mistreatment have caused </li></ul><ul><li>In spite of hardships, Aboriginal people have demonstrated remarkable resiliency and many have risen to levels of great success. </li></ul><ul><li>The purpose of historical understanding is to view the current realities in a different light, understand why Aboriginal people rightfully need a special focus, and to be more critical of what stories the media and commentators tell us. </li></ul><ul><li>History shows us the social rationale and the legal rationale (vis-à-vis treaty obligations) </li></ul>
Questions? <ul><li>Contact Information: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ken Sanderson </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Senior Project Lead </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Aboriginal Centre of Excellence </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>1 st Floor, 320 Donald Street </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Winnipeg, MB R3B 2H3 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Phone: (204) 984-0234 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Email: [email_address] </li></ul></ul>
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