Photo by: Brian Bienkowski

AAMJIWNAANG FIRST NATION, ON (March 15, 2017)–For a period of 12 millennia prior to the coming of newcomers to our part of Southern Ontario the Anishnaabeg people lived and worked in an environment protected by lush foliage and tall trees. Occasional clearings produced gardens of vegetables and fruit orchards for their family’s nourishment as well as meat from deer and moose.

At the end of the 1700’s and ending in the mid- 1800’s English settlers from the Upper United States plus immigrants from the British Isles moved into Anishnaabeg Territory and squatted what they thought was unclaimed land raising the concerns of Anishnaabeg leaders. The main concern was that our people would be in jeopardy once again. They remembered that Tecumseh died while helping the British soldiers defend Canada from American aggression. During that war called the War of 1812-14 the British soldiers with the help of Tecumseh and his warriors stopped the American army from taking Canada.

In the year 1827, 14 years after Tecumseh’s demise, our leaders were wary of the British army that could be used to protect the interests of settlers against our people. The British established a fort near Amherstburg and it was at this venue where our leaders agreed to surrender in excess of 2 million acres of Aboriginal land in exchange for four parcels of land containing less than 30,000 acres.

– Wilson Plain, Traditional Chief/Elder, Aamjiwnaang

– David Plain, B.R.S., M.T.S., Author/Elder, Aamjiwnaang

EVENT DETAILS

Anishnaabeg Run, Walk, Paddle, and Ride Relay.

“In honour of our Ancestors; here and never forgotten.”

At a time when Canada is celebrating its 150th birthday, the Aamjiwnaang Heritage and Culture Club invites everyone to celebrate and gather together by exploring our Anishnaabeg traditional territory in Southwestern Ontario with this very unique experience. We will be touring much of the perimeter of the traditional lands–an estimated 600 km*–with scheduled stops at historically sacred spaces. Participants can join in and/or leave at any point along the route. This event is an opportunity to celebrate, educate, and gain an understanding of our local history on Turtle Island (North America). The projected time frame is mid-July, 2017. Sweat equity (volunteers), donations and participants are required for such an event and we look forward to meeting those interested in becoming involved in this project.

To contact our group with questions or donate to the project or request related information:

Marina Plain at 519-328-0942 or mdplain@gmail.com

*final route has yet to be determined