Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Sara Riel 1848-1883

"Sarah Riel the sister of Métis leader Louis Riel was born October 11, 1848 in St. Boniface, Manitoba. She joined the Grey Nuns as a novice in 1865 and in 1868 became the first Métis Grey Nun from Red River. She could speak English, French, Cree and Michif and in 1871  was sent to Île-à-la-Crosse where her father Jean-Louis Riel was born. She served in the school and the hospital of the mission until her death of tuberculosis December 27, 1883. She took the name Sister Marguerite-Marie in 1872 and is buried under that name at the cemetery in Île-à-la-Crosse. Her headstone in French reads: Ici Repose Rév. Soeur Marguerite Marie (Riel) Decédée 27 Decembre, 1883, Agée 34 ans, R.I.P.  She and her brother Louis Riel wrote to each other while she was alive and letters remain describing their relationship and her life in Île-à-la-Crosse."
Ile a la Crosse is built on a peninsula (aerial view) 

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Flight from Île-à-la-Crosse 1885

Stories from the North-West Rebellion 

April 1885
In a few months the waterways of  northern  Saskatchewan would be ice free and York boat brigades would again travel to supply the Hudson's Bay Company posts of the Athabasca and Mackenzie River Districts located north of the Methye Portage. It was spring and some swift moving rivers like the Beaver River were relatively free of ice. Open water was beginning to show along some lakes. In the last week of April 1885 rumours of war reached the isolated village of Ile a la Crosse. The village had a population of about 300 people. Most were descendants of French Metis from Red River.

Ile a la Crosse 

Ile a la Crosse was the birthplace of Louis Riel Sr. the father of Louis Riel in 1817.  Sara Riel the sister of Louis Riel died in Ile a la Crosse in 1883. She was 34 years old.

Sunday, 21 July 2013

The Looting of Green Lake in 1885

Stories of the North-West Rebellion

On April 26, 1885 a group of armed militants arrived to claim the contents of the Green Lake Post.

The river on this map of Green Lake flows into the Beaver River.

Green Lake is a village of 418 people in Saskatchewan a half hour drive north of the city of Meadow Lake.
A Hudson's Bay Post called Green Lake House was located there.  It was an important depot for the movement of supplies to the far north and was connected to Fort Carlton by an a ox-cart trail built in 1875-76.

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Dene/Chipewyan Statistics

Dene children in La Loche, Saskatchewan in the 1940s

The Dene Suline language or the Chipewyan language 

Approximately 11,000 of the 11,860 people who chose Dene as their mother tongue in the 2011 Canada Census are Dene/Chipewyan from the historical Chipewyan regions south and east of Great Slave Lake.  7,955 or 72% were in Saskatchewan, 1,005 were in Manitoba, 510 plus urban dwellers in Alberta and 260 plus urban dwellers  in the Northwest Territories.