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Indigenous Peoples Day

Indigenous Peoples Day for Canada: Red Sky Metis Association of Thunder


by Scott A. Sumner

Recently it was Indigenous Peoples Day for Canada.  The Red Sky Metis Association of Thunder Bay decided to do their own event, as Prince Arthur’s Landing was the first Metis settlement in Canada.
   “ The Spirit Gardens means a lot to us as it was Red Sky’s citizens that were here where we all started. The fur traders started the whole thing in the 1600’s and the first fort was build here in 1679 across on
the Kaministiqua,  where the Tug boat is tied up,”said Donelda DeLaRonde of the Red Sky Metis Association of Thunder Bay. “ In 1717 they built the fort where the Old Fort is today but kept on getting
flooded out so moved to the east end. It was the Northwest Company and O and Y company which were before the Hudson’s Bay Company. They started in Acadia and then went to Montreal where the first parliament in Canada was formed which was burnt down. 84 half breed were included in the Robertson Superior Treaty. Our membership are descendants of those people. We have 3000 members today and will have about 8000 when we collect everyone who may live across Canada. Our history has never
been told and we want to get our history out to be taught in schools.”
Who is Red Sky Métis Independent Nation™?

Red Sky Métis Independent Nation™ (RSMIN) consists of descendents of the 84 “half-breeds” who were recognized by the Crown as beneficiaries and annuitants under the Robinson Superior Treaty of 1850, in
concurrence with the First Nation peoples.  However, RSMIN is distinct from the First Nation peoples, by ways of our traditional lands, traditions, customs, and practices.

The RSMIN People are Aboriginal people as defined by the Constitution Act of 1982, and descendent of the beneficiaries to the Robinson Superior Treaty of 1850.

RSMIN Territory

The following map defines the Robinson Superior Treaty of 1850’s land region and the areas of current and traditional land use by the RSMIN Community:

Historic RSMIN Community

The northern shore of Lake Superior in Northwestern Ontario enjoys a proud Métis history unique to the area.  French Métis fur traders settled in the area in the 1600’s.  The land was considered
uncivilized, savage and unsuitable for living. These people survived and grew to build a railroad, establish mines, and forestry industries that were the foundation of Canada.  Over the centuries the RSMIN
people survived through great hardship and discrimination. The attitudes over the last 150+ years acted as constant erosion trying to wash off their true identity,  this has only strengthened the RSMIN
community’s resolve to preserve and maintain the unique history,  traditions, and practices.  For more RSMIN History please visit the History Page or the RSMIN Community Heritage Wiki (CHW)
at rsmin.ca/CHW.

The RSMIN CHW is a groundbreaking concept in relation to how other communities are collecting and preserving data, and although many other wiki sites exist, such as Wikipedia, there are no other sites that are completely dedicated to one community with goals in preserving its unique and untold heritage.

Red Sky Métis Independent Nation Today

The Red Sky Métis Independent Nation people possess a strong sense of shared identity.  Approximately 8,000 Red Sky Métis Independent Nation citizens reside in communities throughout the Robinson-Superior Treaty area as well as throughout Canada and the World.

The RSMIN Community is committed to the preservation of history, traditions and practices.  As stewards of the land and natural resources the RSMIN Community share a common interest for safe and
sustainable harvesting, education, health and wellbeing, and environment protection.  These commitments are for the benefit of future generations and the preservation of our historic place in the
world.  For more information regarding the preservation of your knowledge or family history please visit the About RSMIN Community
Heritage Wiki (CHW).

A Nation for the 21st Century

Métis Chief Troy DeLaRonde is dedicated to preserving and celebrating Métis identity and history that recognizes the Métis contribution to the formation of Canada, the completion of former Metis Chief Roy
DeLaRonde’s mandate to establish treaty rights to the RSMIN community, and the ongoing advancement of the RSMIN Community.The Métis people of the Lake Superior front originated in the intimate relations of French Fur Traders with Aboriginal women along the great Canadian canoe route to the Northwest. These marriages according to the customs of the country produced children who often found themselves
between the cultures of their fathers and mothers and thus came to see themselves as a “New Nation.”
The French fur trade was carried on at the present location of Thunder Bay as early as 1679 when Daniel Greysolon, Sieur du Lhut, “King of the Coureurs de Bois” established a trading post at the mouth of the
Kaministiquia River, and to that point he attracted tribes who lived hundreds of miles away in the forests and on the prairies. A former bodyguard of King Louis of France, he died and was buried with great
acclaim in Montreal in February, 1710.Métis people in this area are the descendants of the original employees of the North West Company and the Hudson’s Bay Company working at Fort William as well as other posts. They are considered the first permanent settlers of the Thunder Bay Regions. They are also known as members of a group who chose to remain associated with the district as whole, who
traveled between the various posts of the area to work. Many of them remained for long periods of time at one post, where their families were inevitably raised, and whose children intermarried.Métis people continued as a prominent part of the population during the first decades after confederation (1867) with settlements on the Kaministiquia River across from West fort and on Thunder Bay between
McVicar Creek and the Current River.
The Red Sky Métis Independent Nation people possess a strong sense of shared identity and an exclusive territorial base comprising as a Treaty Right lands located in the Robinson 1850 Treaties areas and beyond, reflecting their well-documented history as an indigenous Euro-Aboriginal fur trading nation established throughout the territories of New France, part of which became Lower Canada (later
Quebec) and Upper Canada (later Ontario) and extending across the Great Lakes and down the Mississippi valley as far south as Louisiana. Our history and culture is celebrated in the traditions and songs of the Great Rendezvous, chronicled in the annals of the North West Company and the Hudson’s Bay Company and occupies an uncontested, pre-eminent position in the historical record of the founding of Thunder bay, Gateway to the West. It unites the traditions of the people of New France and English Canada with that of our Aboriginal mothers into a distinct and vibrant Métis culture. We are the voice of
the Métis people of the Red Sky Métis Independent Nation whose ancestors the Coureurs de Bois, the first colonists – the French Voyageurs, settled this area and brought Canada to the attention of the
World as a land of unsurpassed natural wealth and unparalleled opportunity.
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Scott Sumner