Treaty 8, 1899: Review
First treaty outside Rupert's Land; last signed in the 19 century
Klondike Gold Rush (all Canadian, back-door routes) the catalyst
Encompassed federal and provincial (BC) jurisdictions, which had dissimilar
It included major ambiguities; basis of the boundaries on official map unknown.
Boundary ambiguities are significant to aboriginal rights today (e.g. oil & gas)
Government of Canada assumed responsibility for all of Rupert's land through the
Rupert's Land TransferAct, 1868-1870, when HBC sold to Canada (year after
confederation in 1867)
Treaties were part of that responsibility (Canada assumed responsibility for
aboriginal peoples and their rights). Treaties had to guarantee Indians access to
Indian lands and traditional livelihoods
Another goal of treaty making was also to facilitate peaceful development of
newly acquired territory.
BC joined Canada in 1871
Warfare south of border; not wanting that in Canada: financial costs (Canada
borrowed 1.5 million to buy Rupert's Land, so must avoid delay in settling and
developing the land; peaceful, swift settlement the goal).
Provided reserves set aside for community reserves; Indians to choose the areas
Provided lump-sum payments at signing
Provided annuities.Aform of delayed payment, in perpetuity. Cash payment
Provided livelihood rights for traditional vocation on off-reserve undeveloped
1870s: buffalos rapid decline (important to natives and metis as food and clothes)
◦ Who lived in the area in the 1890s?
◦ What was the nature of the aboriginal economy of the 1890s?
◦ How did the federal government manage to get BC on board when BC didn't
want to recognizeAboriginal title?
◦ Why were there western boundary ambiguities and issues?
Entering the Next Century: Imagining a National Economy and Capturing/opening the
Optimism of the new century
◦ “I think that we can claim that it is Canada that shall fill the 20 century”
Canadian Prime Minister Wilfrid Laurier
◦ Any basis for this assertion?
▪ Yes: there was a national or nationalistic policy for the new dominion and
it seemed to be working.
▪ Industrial growth; transcontinental and other railways; other infrastructure
for exporting Canada's resources and products; NWMP; Indian dept.And
treaties for prairie lands; dominion fisheries, mines, agriculture; land and geological surveys; immigration policies; mineral discoveries (Klondike
Gold Rush); agricultural development (priority); explosive population
growth; several new provinces in confederation (original confederation
only had 4 provinces)
▪ Prairie provinces didn't get power until 1970s???
▪ Since 1896 alone:
Canada had just participated in its first overse