History 2201E Lecture Notes - Half-Breed

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30 Apr 2013
Department
History Lecture 29 Jan. 21
REBELLION 1885
- By 1885, Canadian surveyors are moving from Manitoba towards the
northwest
- Many Metis left Manitoba after 1870 in order to pursue their traditional
lifestyles went to Prince Albert
- Metis assumed that the surveyors will try to do what they did 15 years
earlier, so they sent petitions to the federal gov’t asking them to recognize
their existing land claims and to have title of the land before the surveyors
come along
- Federal gov’t – John A MacDonald is in power by 1878 and stays prime
minister in 1885 ignores petitions of the Metis
- Federal gov’t sets up what they call a half-breed land commission
- Sets up a commission in 1884 to handle what the Metis grievances are and
see where they’re living, etc.
- By 1885, the Metis led by Gabriel Dumont decide to go down and get Louis
Riel
- Riel considers himself a prophet
- As the result of Riel’s changing views, he’s lost the support of the Catholic
church inside Quebec (lost relationship with priests and bishops)
- Riel has also lost a lot of the sympathy of Quebec as a result
- By 1885, Riel has alienated himself from the Catholic church in Quebec
- Riel tries to set up a provisional gov’t in 1885 – immediately seen as illegal
- The major change comes when Riel tries to take the local fort the NWMP
(northwest mounted police) are there
- Meets troops at Duck Lake, and they ambush the Metis and a battle ensues
- The Metis easily defeat the NWMP
12 NWMP dead and 11 wounded
Metis had 6 dead (5 metis, 1 first nations)
- This victory at Duck Lake gives the Metis confidence that they can defeat the
gov’t in battle, and it’s a spur to the First Nations
- In 1885, Riel is appealing directly to the chiefs
- Once the battle occurs at Duck Lake in the winter of 1884, it has an impact in
Ottawa because they are facing an ‘Indian Uprising’
- Poundmaker and Little Pine move to Battleford hoping to get supplies, but
the problem is that the settlers there assume that the Indians are coming to
attack battleford
Settlers take refuge behind the walls
The Indians are starving because there is no one around, so they begin
to loot
A group of Big Bear’s headmen and warriors move on Frog Lake
where they have had a long dispute with the owner of the local store,
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