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Unit 3: After Confederation

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Jillian Leigh

on 24 May 2018

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Transcript of Unit 3: After Confederation

Unit 3: After Confederation
Why did was the government looking to go West?
A populated west would stop any U.S. expansion in the area

Why were people willing to go west?
the farmers has used most of the good farm land in Ontario
game was declining in these areas due to over hunting (fur trade)
National Policy (1878):
policy of John A. Macdonald that set out a 3 part plan for Canada's future.
Residential Schools:
government-sponsored religious schools established to assimilate Indigenous children into Euro-Canadian culture.
Following the Manitoba Act, the Métis migrated to the NWT into the modern-day prairie provinces & started over --> built farms, worked in the fur trade, continued the annual buffalo hunt.

The drive to complete the railway had made Canada's government deaf to the concerns of the Métis people in the west, and of the Plains First Nations, such as the Blackfoot & Cree, resulting in conflict.
provisional government
National Policy
Residential School
April 1869 - Rupert's Land Purchase
Canada, HBC, Great Britain

Canada would take possession of Rupert's Land & British claimed territories in the NW

Paid GB $1.5 million

Possession date --> December 1869

Didn't consult people living there...
Who lived in Red River?
About half of population spoke French, half spoke English
Francophone Métis people
Anglophone Métis people
Retired HBC employees
Scottish & Irish colonists
Louis Riel
Born and raised in St. Boniface (Red River settlement)

Métis father &
mother --> identified strongly with Francophone Métis

Age 14, attended Collége de Montréal --> studied sciences and languages, including English

Returned to Red River in 1868 --> stood out in community
someone with higher education
could speak English, French & Cree
What triggered the Rebellion in 1869?
1) Hunger

2) Canadian Surveyors

3) William McDougall
1) Hunger
Crop failure & the decline of the buffalo
--> people were starving, struggling to make a living
2) Canadian Surveyors
sent by federal gov't --> making plans for Rupert's Land & NWT as though no one lived there

measured land into sections for settlement
--> would push the fur trade, Métis way of life, off the land

October 1869 - Riel stopped surveyors from crossing his cousin's farm
3) William McDougall
November 1869
- tried to enter the Red River Territory

chosen by federal gov't to be new lieutenant-governor of the territory
--> anti-Francophone views

sent ahead by G of C to be in place before land transfer happened in Dec. 1869
Events of the Red River Rebellion (1869-1870)
1) Blockade of William McDougall
2) Seizure of Fort Garry
3) Provisional Government
4) Death of Thomas Scott
1) Blockade of William McDougall
November 1869
- Métis volunteers set up a blockade and stopped McDougall from entering the territory
2) Seizure of Fort Garry
Took control of Fort Garry (major HBC trading post in area)
HBC didn't resist seizure --> no shots fired
3) Provisional Government
December 1869 - Metis declared a provisional gov't
Riel chosen, then elected as president
he agreed to discuss terms of entry into Confederation with Canadian gov't
4) Death of Thomas Scott
Group of Ontario settlers tried to overthrow provisional gov't

Feb. 1870 --> provisional gov't arrested some of them & tried them for conspiring agains its authority

March 1870 - convicted and executed Thomas Scott
Riel could've spared Scott's life; was asked to by outside sources --> chose not to
Resulted in outrage in Protestant Ontario

Canadian authorities were still willing to negotiate with Riel, but they refused to grant unconditional amnesty to him & other rebel leaders
Manitoba Act of 1870
Negotiated by gov't of Canada & Red River provisional gov't

Brought the settlement of Red River into Confederation as an officially bilingual province - the province of Manitoba

Compromise between all stakeholders
The Manitoba Act --> Key Points
Acknowledged First Nations land rights

Committed public funding for both Protestant and Catholic schools

Made French & English official languages of Manitoba's legislature

Recognised Métis rights to land

Established Manitoba as a province --> gave people of Manitoba the right to elect a provincial gov't and representatives to Canada's federal gov't
Issues of the Manitoba Act
Didn't suggest a process or principles for negotiating with First Nations

Didn't give Manitoba control over public lands like the original provinces of Confederation --> federal gov't took control

Didn't specify any particular tracts of land for the Metis

Made Manitoba small --> the rest of the territory of Rupert's Land & the NWT was under direct federal control.
defined "qualified voters" as permanent residents --> disqualified many Métis
Because protections for the Métis were not fully realized, many ended up leaving the province for the NWT.
July 20, 1871 - British Columbia Joins Confederation
Gov't of Canada promised to link BC to eastern Canada with a railway

First, Canada they needed to negotiate treaties with the Cree, Nakoda, and other First Nations living in the west
Perspectives of the "Numbered Treaties"
Sharing vs. Owning Land

Oral vs. Written History

Adaptation vs. Assimilation
What did the Numbered Treaties promise the First Nations?


Reserves -->
lands set aside for the exclusive use of First Nations

Rights to Hunt & Fish -->
access to fish & game on all lands at all times

Farming Assistance -->
provision of tools & seed


Why were the NWMP established?
Problems with illegal American whiskey traders operating illegal posts --> ex. Fort Whoop-Up
offered alcohol & repeating rifles for fur
cheaply made, highly addictive

John A. Macdonald received reports of the devastating effects of whiskey trade on the Blackfoot, Blood & other First Nations

Cypress Hills Massacre (1873)
36 Nakoda First Nations were massacred by whiskey traders
Relationship with the First Nations Peoples
Ending Lawlessness in the West
July 4, 1874 - First regiment of the NWMP assembled in Dufferin, Manitoba and began to march west

October 1874 - arrived at Fort Whoop-Up, but the American traders had already left

Established first HQ at Fort Macleod in southern Alberta

End of 1874, it had established 6 forts in the West
NWMP developed a trust with the First Nations
helped them keep peace in the west as the railway advanced
advised First Nations, such as the Blackfoot Confederacy, to conclude treaties with the gov't
"In the coming of the Long Knives, with their firewater and quick-shooting guns, we are weak and our people have been woefully slain and impoverished. You say this will be stopped. We are glad to have it stopped. What you tell us about this strong power which will govern with good law and treat the Indian the same as the white man, make us glad. My brother, I believe you and I am thankful."

- Chief Issapoomahsika (Crowfoot), Siksika Nation
Paramilitary police force created to help police the Western frontier.
National Policy of 1878
1) Promote Canadian Industry
wanted Canadians to buy Canadian products, even when American products were cheaper
proposed putting a
on American goods sold in Canada

2) Finish the National Railway
Connect BC with eastern Canada

3) Settle the West
Wanted the West to be the centre of agricultural production for Canada
offered free land to European immigrants --> become farmers
would grow grain for Canada & trade, also would buy Canadian products
Purpose & Goals of Residential Schools
CANADIAN GOVERNMENT saw residential schools as away to...
make FN more economically self-sufficient --> depend less on gov't $
force the assimilation of FN children

FIRST NATIONS saw Euro-Canadian schooling as a way to...
enable their young to learn the skills of the newcomer society
help their youth make a successful transition to a world dominated by strangers
Residential Schools & Assimilation (1883)
1883 - John A. Macdonald authorized the creation of residential schools in the West.
Forced Assimilation:
Schools separated children from their families and disrupted children's connections to their languages & traditions
Children were also victims of abuse --> physical, mental, emotional, sexual
Challenges in the West
1) Disappearance of the buffalo
pushed people to near starvation
loss of Métis & First Nations way of life
1879 - can no longer be found on the prairies

2) Settlers pushing West
much of FN land had been signed away in treaties --> seeing towns, farm fences & railways appearing on the once wild, expansive prairies

1870s - federal surveyors & land speculators had also started to arrive, marking land along route
thought the railway would go --> including through Métis settlements at South Branch
Consequences of the Northwest Rebellion
Why did the government need to negotiate treaties with the Plains First Nations instead of just taking their land?
The Canadian government entered into 11 treaties total with the First Nations between 1871 and 1921.
1877 - Medal symbolizing the treaty between the gov't & the Blackfoot Confederacy, Sarcee, Stony and all other FN inhabiting the district.
Key Actions of the Northwest Rebellion
1) Government ambitions & Métis petitions
2) Riel's Return
3) Revolutionary Bill of Rights
4) Provisional Government
5) Rebellion Spreads
6) Battle of Batoche
1) 1870s - Government Ambitions & Métis Petitions
Métis had sent many petitions to the federal gov't, asking them to acknowledge farms & settlements acknowledge farms & settlements already there

Canadian gov't ignored them
Gabriel Dumont sought help of Riel, retrieved him from exile in Montana, USA

Riel began talking to Francophone & Anglophone Métis, First Nations leaders & other settlers about a way forward --> urged them to unite & press their case
Sent another petition to the federal gov't --> ignored
Proposed armed rebellion
2) Return of Riel
10-point bill of rights
asserted rights to their farms & made other demands as well
3) 8 March 1885 - Métis "Revolutionary Bill of Rights"
seized Batoche
demanded surrender of nearby HBC post, Fort Carlton
made Riel president
4) 18-19 March 1885 - Métis Provisional Government
5) Rebellion Spreads
6) 9-12 May 1885 - Battle of Batoche
Gov't sent 600 troops via railway in response to the formation of the provisional gov't --> marched on Batoche
Métis & allies, despite smaller numbers, offered substantial resistance
Canadians had better numbers, more artillery & heavier guns --> waited until their enemy ran out of ammo
Lured Métis out into the open with a smaller force before attacking with bigger army on the other side
Métis forced to retreat; Riel officially surrendered on May 15
Chief Issapoomahsika (Crowfoot)
Battle of Duck Lake
Métis occupied the area
100 NWMP and armed citizens moved in --> met by large group of Métis & FN
Rebel victory! --> police & volunteers retreated
Chief Pitikwahanapiwiyin (Poundmaker)
Siksika chief & diplomat --> negotiated with federal gov't on behalf of Blackfoot Confederacy

Was a key link between the Plains FN and the NWMP --> key negotiator & supporter of Treaty 7 (passed 1877)

By 1881, had grown disillusioned with Canadian gov't
Mistrusted the Dept. of Indian Affairs, BUT refused to allow his people to join the Northwest Rebellion
less out of loyalty to the gov't --> believed that it was a losing fight

Was still celebrated for his loyalty to the Crown
Cree chief, adopted son of Chief Crowfoot
Strove to protect the interests of his people during the negotiation of Treaty 6
questioned how the gov't could "lay claim" to their territory
eventually, he reluctantly signed Treaty 6

Considered a peacemaker - didn't take up arms in the Northwest Rebellion, called for peace
a young & militant faction of his band did participate in conflict
raided a village after the local "Indian agent" refused to give Poundmaker the rations he was owed
Battle of Cut Knife

Lt. Colonel William Otter attacked band camp, which was defended by Cree & Stoney warriors
Poundmaker didn't participate, but convinced the warriors not to chase after the retreating army
Chief Mistahimaskwa (Big Bear)
Plains Cree chief, known for his refusal to sign Treaty 6 in 1878
believed the treaty conditions seemed to ensure perpetual poverty & the destruction of his people's way of life
called it "
a rope around our necks
" --> would "strangle" their freedom & limit their control over Indigenous land, resources & way of life

April 1885 - Battle of Frog Lake
more extreme followers, led by Little Bear, forced settlers attending church outside the building & shot the Indian agent (Thomas T. Quinn) --> killed 9 men (2 were priests)
Big Bear tried to stop the violence, but Canadian gov't considered him an active participant in the North-West Rebellion at this point
This is our land. It isn't a piece of pemmican to be cut off and given in little pieces back to us. It is ours and we will take what we want
2) Arrest of Big Bear & Poundmaker
1) Surrender, Trial & Execution of Riel
Big Bear - play to 1:38
3) Government Suppression of Metis & First Nations
4) Métis Migration West - Again...
Riel gave himself up to the Canadian troops
gov't had to decide what charges to press against him --> his followers had committed murder, but he hadn't

Charged with treason under an 1352 statute

Convicted & sentenced to death --> executed November 16, 1885
Jury had recommended mercy
In a way, people still thought he was guilty of the murder of Thomas Scott
Both Big Bear & Poundmaker surrendered

Despite not participating in the Rebellion, both were found guilty of treason
Riel had written a letter with Poundmaker's name on it --> assumed to be complicit
Because of the power of his adopted father, Crowfoot, his hair wasn't cut in prison & he served only 7 months in jail

Big Bear
Held responsible for Frog Lake killings, despite evidence of his innocence
Served 2 years in jail --> released early due to failing health
"Everything I could do was done to stop bloodshed. Had I wanted war, I would not be here now. I should be on the prairie. You did not catch me. I gave myself up. You have got me because I wanted justice."
- Chief Poundmaker
restricted movement of FN people on reserves --> needed a pass to leave
Manitoba School Act (1890)
Defeat at Battle of Batoche triggered new migration into present-day Alberta
Alberta has the largest population of Métis population in Canada
Some of Poundmaker's warriors planned to join Riel's forces, though he was against it
They captured a wagon of supplies and took the men from the supply train as prisoners
Poundmaker intervened to ensure prisoners weren't harmed
Big Bear's warriors made no effort to join in to assist the forces of Riel and Poundmaker

The Government of Manitoba:
abolished separate schools
revoked clauses that made Manitoba officially bilingual --> English became the only official language of the gov't
Following the 2nd Métis uprising and a shift in demographics, the clauses in the Manitoba Act that protected French language & culture didn't last.
1) Surrender, Trial & Execution of Riel

2) Arrest of Big Bear & Poundmaker

3) Government Suppression of the Métis & First Nations

4)Métis Migration West
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