Subscribe and save!
magazine / apr09

April 2009 issue


FEATURE
Métis population growth



Mixed blessings
Canada’s Métis population has grown fourfold in the past 20 years. The reason? Ordinary people examining their ancestry and developing pride in their bloodlines. But some Métis leaders are resisting the uprising.
Excerpt of story by Mark Abley with photography by Nayan Sthankiya

“Solid mahogany,” says Mark Calette of the big, battered pool table in the visitor centre of Batoche National Historic Site, about an hour’s drive northeast of Saskatoon. “It was made in London. And its magnificence tells a story. It shows that the Métis were not a poor people. They were an entrepreneurial people who were doing really well.”


Advertisement

For decades, the table was used at Stony Mountain Penitentiary, north of Winnipeg, having been carted there after the 1885 Northwest Rebellion in what would become Saskatchewan. Before the uprising, the table almost certainly belonged to Gabriel Dumont, who led the outnumbered Métis forces against government troops.

Calette, the site’s project manager, reaches out and fingers the table lovingly. Its recent return to Batoche, where the decisive battle of the uprising took place, tells another kind of story. It symbolizes a change in how Parks Canada — indeed, Canada in general — views the Métis. Not only has our attitude to Métis history shifted, we may be starting to look on the Métis as a model for the future. Novelist and philosopher John Ralston Saul began his recent book, A Fair Country: Telling Truths About Canada, with these words: “We are a Métis civilization.”

For the rest of this story, visit your local newsstand or go to our store to buy this issue.




Search our sites: ,



Digital Edition available now!
Sign up for our newsletters

CG POLL

What do you like best about fall?

the colourful autumn leaves
pumpkin flavoured edibles
refreshingly cooler temperatures
I don’t like anything about fall

Comments (optional):






Meet our client partners
CG Contests
Featured Destinations
ADventures
Classifieds
Advertiser Directory

Canadian Geographic Magazine | Canadian Geographic Travel Magazine
Canadian Atlas Online | Canadian Travel | CG Education | Mapping & Cartography | Canadian Geographic Photo Club | Kids | Canadian Contests | Canadian Lesson Plans | Blog

Royal Canadian Geographical Society | Canadian Geographic Education | Geography Challenge | Canadian Award for Environmental Innovation

Jobs | Internships | Submission Guidelines

© 2014 Canadian Geographic Enterprises