The Treaties of Canada with The Indians of Manitoba and the North-West Territories
Chapter VIII. The Winnipeg Treaty Number Five


This treaty, covers an area of approximately about 100,000 square miles. The region is inhabited by Chippewas and Swampy Crees. The necessity for it had become urgent. The lake is a large and valuable sheet of water, being some three hundred miles long. The Red River flows into it and the Nelson River flows from it into Hudson's Bay. Steam navigation had been successfully established by the Hudson's Bay Company on Lake Winnipeg. A tramway of five miles in length was being built by them to avoid the Grand Rapids and connect that navigation with steamers on the River Saskatchewan. On the west side of the lake, a settlement of Icelandic immigrants had been founded, and some other localities were admirably adapted for settlement. Moreover, until the construction of the Pacific Railway west of the city of Winnipeg, the lake and Saskatchewan River are destined to become the principal thoroughfare of communication between Manitoba and the fertile prairies in the west. A band of Indians residing at Norway House, who had supported themselves by serving the Hudson's Bay Company as boatmen on the route from Lake Winnipeg to the Hudson Bay, by way of the Nelson River, but whose occupation was gone, owing to supplies being brought in by way of the Red River, desired to migrate to the western shore of Lake Winnipeg, and support themselves there by farming.

For these and other reasons, the Minister of the Interior reported "that it was essential that the Indian title to all the territory in the vicinity of the lake should be extinguished so that settlers and traders might have undisturbed access to its waters, shores, islands, inlets and tributary streams." The mouth of the Saskatchewan River especially seemed to be of importance, as presenting an eligible site for a future town. For these reasons the Privy Council of Canada, in the year 1875, appointed Lieut.-Gov. Morris, and the Hon. James McKay, to treat with these Indians. It may be here stated that this remarkable man, the son of an Orkneyman by an Indian mother, has recently died at a comparatively early age. Originally in the service of the Hudson's Bay Company, he became a trader on his own account. Thoroughly understanding the Indian character, he possessed large influence over the Indian tribes, which he always used for the benefit and the advantage of the Government.

The Hudson's Bay Company, to resume this narrative, kindly placed their propeller steamer, the Colville, at the service of the Commissioners, and the Board in London, in view of the public service rendered by its use by the Commissioners, eventually declined to make any charge for its employment. A full report of the voyage of the Commissioners, and of the results of their mission, will be found in the despatch of the Lieutenant-Governor, which will be found at the end of this chapter. Suffice it to say, that the Commissioners proceeded first to Berens River, on the east side of the lake, and made a treaty with the Indians of that side of the lake, thence they sailed to the head of Lake Winnipeg, descended the Nelson River to Norway House, where no steamer had ever before been, and concluded a treaty with the Indians there.

They also promised the Indians to give those of them who chose to remove, a reserve on the west side of Lake Winnipeg, at Fisher's River, about forty miles from the Icelandic settlement.

A considerable number of families have since removed there, and have formed a very promising settlement.

From Nelson River the Commissioners proceeded to the mouth of the Great Saskatchewan River, and met the Indians who live there. Their houses were built at the foot of the Grand Rapids, and in the immediate vicinity of the Hudson's Bay, Tramway, some seven miles from the mouth of the river. The river is here deep to the very shore, so that the steamer ran long aside the bank, and was moored by ropes attached to the Chief's house. The Commissioners met the Indians and informed them of the desire of the Government to control the land where they had settled, and to give them a reserve, instead, on the opposite side of the river. They said, they would surrender the locality in question, and go to the south side of the river, if a small sum was given them, to aid them in removing their houses or building others. To this the Commissioners willingly acceded, and promised that the next year a sum of five hundred dollars would be paid them for that purpose. The treaty was then signed, the Commissioners having extended the boundaries of the treaty limits, so as to include the Swampy Cree Indians at the Pas or Wahpahpuha, a settlement on the Saskatchewan River, and recommended that Commissioners should be sent in the ensuing summer to complete the work. The Commissioners then returned to Winnipeg, after a voyage, on and around the lake, of about one thousand miles. The terms of the treaty were identical with those of Treaties Numbers Three and Four, except that a smaller quantity of land was granted to each family, being one hundred and sixty, or in some cases one hundred acres to each family of five, while under Treaties Numbers Three and Four the quantity of land allowed was six hundred and forty acres to each such family. The gratuity paid each Indian in recognition of the treaty was also five dollars per head, instead of twelve dollars the circumstances under which the treaty was made being different. The area covered by these treaties was approximately about 100,000 square miles and has been described as lying north of the territory covered by Treaties Numbers Two and Three, extending west to Cumberland House (on the Saskatchewan River) and including the country east and west of Lake Winnipeg, and of Nelson River as far north as Split Lake.

In 1876, Lieut.-Gov. Morris, in accordance with his suggestions to that effect, was requested by the Minister of the Interior, to take steps for completing the treaty, and entrusted the duty to the Hon. Thomas Howard, and J. Lestock Reid, Esq., Dominion Land Surveyor. He gave them formal instructions, and directed them to meet the Indians together at Dog Head Point, on the lake, to treat with the Island Indians there and thence to proceed to Berens River to meet the Indians of the rapids of that river who had not been able to be present the previous year, and thereafter directed Mr. Howard to proceed to the mouth of the Saskatchewan and pay the Indians the five hundred dollars for removal of the houses, and thence to go up the Saskatchewan to the Pas and deal with the Indians there, while Mr. Reid was to proceed from Berens River to Norway House, and arrange with the Indians for the removal of such of them as desired it, to Fisher's River, on Lake Winnipeg.

These gentlemen accordingly in July, 1876, proceeded in York boats (large sail boats) to their respective destinations, and were very successful in accomplishing the work confided to them. I now append the official despatch of Lieut.-Gov. Morris, dated 11th October, 1875, giving an account of the making of the treaty and of the journey, and his despatch of the 17th November, 1876, relating to the completion of the treaty, together with extracts from the reports of Messrs. Howard and Reid.

FORT GARRY, October 11th, 1875.

TO THE HONORABLE THE MINISTER OF THE INTERIOR.

Sir,--I have the honor to inform you, that under authority of the Commission of the Privy Council to that effect, I proceeded to Lake Winnipeg for the purpose of making a treaty with the Saulteaux and Swampy Cree Indians, in company with my associate, the Hon. James McKay, leaving Fort Garry for Chief Prince's Landing on the Red River, on the 17th September last, in order to embark on the Hudson's Bay Company's new propeller, the Colville, which Chief Commissioner Graham had kindly placed at our disposal on advantageous terms. We selected this mode of conveyance, as travelling and conveyance of provisions in York boats would, at the advanced period of the season, have occupied at least eight weeks, if at all practicable.

The steamer left the landing at five o'clock on the 18th September, but owing to the prevalence of a gale of northerly wind was compelled to be anchored at the three channels of the Red River, inside of the bar which obstructs the entrance of the lake. The wind continued during the 18th and 19th, but on the afternoon of the latter day, Captain Hackland, a sailor of much practical experience on the Northern Seas decided to risk going out, as the water on the bar was running down so fast that he feared that the steamer would be unable to cross over the bar. I may remark that the wind causes the waters of the lake to ebb and flow into the river with great rapidity, and that the bar is so serious an obstruction to an important navigation, that it ought to be examined with a view to ascertain the cost and practicability of its removal. Leaving our anchorage, we crossed the bar at three in the afternoon with difficulty, and proceeded on our voyage; anchored opposite the mouth of the Berens River on Monday, the 20th, at nine a.m., to await the arrival of a pilot, as no steamer had ever before entered the river. Under the pilotage of a Chief and a Councillor, we reached Berens River Post, the Indians greeting us with volleys of firearms, and at once summoned the Indians to meet us in the Wesleyan Mission School House, which the Rev. Mr. Young kindly placed at our disposal. We met the Indians at four o'clock, and explained the object of our visit. The question of reserves was one of some difficulty, but eventually this was arranged, and the Indians agreed to accept our offer, and the indenture of treaty was signed by the Chiefs and head men about eleven p.m. The payment of the present of five dollars per head, provided by the treaty, was immediately commenced by Mr. McKay and the Hon. Thomas Howard, who accompanied me as Secretary and Pay Master, and was continued until one a.m., when the payment was concluded.

The steamer left next day, the 21st, for Norway House, but the captain was obliged to anchor at George's Island in the evening, owing to the stormy weather. The Colville remained at anchor all the next day, the 22nd, but left at midnight for Nelson River. We sighted the Mossy and Montreal points, at the mouth of that river, about nine a.m. on the 23rd, and arrived at the old or abandoned Norway House at eleven o'clock, under the guidance of Roderick Rose, Esquire, of the Hudson's Bay Company's Service, at Norway House, who had been engaged for some days in examining the channel, in anticipation of our visit.

The Nelson River expands into Play Green Lake, a large stream of water studded with islands, presenting a remarkable resemblance to the Thousand Islands of the St. Lawrence River. The distance from the mouth of the river to Norway House is twenty miles. We arrived at Norway House at three o'clock and were welcomed there by the Indians, who fired a salute.

On the 24th we met the Indians in a large store-house of the Hudson's Bay Company, and asked them to present their Chiefs and head men. We found that there were two distinct bands of Indians, the Christian Indians of Norway House, and the Wood or Pagan Indians of Cross Lake. Each elected their Chiefs by popular vote in a most business-like manner, and the Chiefs, after consulting the bands, selected the head men. We then accepted the Chiefs, and I made an explanation of the object of our visit in English, and the Hon. James McKay in the Indian dialect. We severed the questions of terms and reserves, postponing the latter till we had disposed of the former. The Indians gratefully accepted of the offered terms, and we adjourned the conference to enable them to consult as to reserves. On re-assembling, the Christian Chief stated that as they could no longer count on employment in boating for the Hudson's Bay Company, owing to the introduction of steam navigation, he and a portion of his band wished to migrate to Lake Winnipeg, where they could obtain a livelihood by farming and fishing. We explained why we could not grant them a reserve for that purpose at the Grassy Narrows as they wished, owing to the proposed Icelandic settlement there, but offered to allot them a reserve at Fisher River, about forty miles north of the Narrows, and this they accepted. It is supposed that some eighty or ninety families will remove there in spring, and it was arranged that those who remain, instead of receiving a reserve, should retain their present houses and gardens. The Chief of the Pagan band, who has, however, recently been baptized, stated that the Wood Indians wished to remain at Cross Lake, and we agreed that a reserve should be allotted them there. The treaty was then signed and the medals and uniforms presented. The Chiefs, on behalf of their people, thanked Her Majesty and her officers for their kindness to the Indian people, which I suitably acknowledged, and the payment of the presents was commenced by Messrs. McKay and Howard, and completed on the 15th.

We left that day at half-past three amidst cheering by the Indians and a salute of fire-arms, and came to anchor in Play Green Lake, at Kettle Island, at half-past five.

The steamer left Kettle Island next morning at six o'clock for the Grand Rapids of the Saskatchewan, which we reached at four o'clock.

The original post of the Hudson's Bay Company, at the mouth of the river, has been abandoned, and a new one established on their reserve, some six miles higher up the river, at the head of the portage, which the river steamer descends to. The Colville, at our request ran up to the Chiefs house, situated on the shore of a deep bay, and was moored and gangways laid out to the shore. We found an Indian village on the north side, and also the Chief's house, which was built on the only spot where good and inexpensive wharfage can be had, and ascertained afterwards that the Indians claimed the whole north shore for a reserve.

On the 27th we met the Indians near the Chief's house in the open air, at a spot where a large fire had been lighted by them, as the weather was cold. We took a similar course as at Norway House in severing the question of terms of the treaty and reserves, and with like satisfactory results. After a lengthy discussion the Indians agreed to accept the terms, and we then entered upon the difficult question of the reserves. They complained of the Hudson's Bay Company's reserve, and wished to have the land covered by it, but we explained whatever had been promised the Company would be given just as promises made to them would be kept. They said the Company's reserve should be at the abandoned post at the mouth of the river, and not at the end of the portage. We informed them that we would inquire as to this. They then claimed a reserve on both sides of the river of large extent, and extending up to the head of the Grand Rapids, but this we declined to accede to. Eventually, as the locality they had hitherto occupied is so important a point, controlling as it does the means of communication between the mouth of the river, and the head of the rapids, and where a "tram-way" will no doubt ere long require to be constructed, presenting also deep-water navigation and excellent wharfage, and evidently being moreover the site where a town will spring up, we offered them reserve on the south side of the river. They objected, that they had their houses and gardens on the north side of the river, but said that as the Queen's Government were treating them so kindly, that they would go to south side of the river, if a small sum was given them to assist in removing their houses, or building others, and this as will be seen by the terms of the treaty, we agreed to do, believing it to be alike in the interests of the Government to have the control of so important a point as the mouth of the great internal river of the Saskatchewan, and yet only just to the Indians, who were making what was to them so large a concession to the wishes of the Commissioners. On our agreeing to the proposal, the treaty was cheerfully signed by the Chief and head men, and the payment of the present was made to them, together with a distribution of some provisions. I enclose a tracing of the mouth of the river, copied from a sketch thereof kindly made for me by Mr. Ross, which will enable you to understand the actual position of the locality in question, and the better appreciate our reasons for our action in the matter.

The steamer left the Grand Rapids in the afternoon of the 27th, and the captain took his course for the mouth of the Red River, but anchored, as the night became very dark, between George's Island and Swampy Island.

On the 28th, resuming our course at half past five a.m., we sighted Berens River Mission House at eight o'clock, and passed into the channel between Black Bear Island and Dog Head or Wapang Point, at 12.30; then observing a number of Indians on the shore making signals to us by firing guns, we requested the captain to approach the shore. The water being very deep the steamer went close inshore and anchored--the Indians coming off to us in their canoes. We found them to be headed by Thickfoot, a principal Indian of the band inhabiting the islands, and some of those and the Jack Head band of the West Shore, and explained to them the object of our visit. They told us they had heard of it, and had been waiting to see us. Thickfoot said the Island Indians at Big Island, Black Island, Wapang and the other islands in the vicinity had no chief; that they numbered one hundred and twenty-eight, and those at Jack-Fish Head sixty. Thickfoot said he had cattle and would like to have a place assigned to his people on the main shore, where they could live by farming and fishing. We suggested Fisher River to them, which they approved of. Eventually we decided on paying these Indians--took Thickfoot's adhesion to the treaty, of which I enclose a copy, and authorized him to notify the Indians to meet at the Dog Head Point next summer, at a time to be intimated to them, and to request them in the mean time to select a Chief and Councillors. Thickfoot expressed gratitude for the kindness of the Government, and his belief that Indians of the various Islands and of Jack Head Point would cheerfully accept the Queen's benevolence and settle on a reserve. After paying this party, and distributing a small quantity of provisions among them, we resumed our voyage, and, owing to the character of the navigation, again came to anchor in George's Channel at seven o'clock, p.m. On the 29th, we left our anchorage at five o'clock a.m., and entered the mouth of the Red River at twelve o'clock, crossing the bar without difficulty, as the weather was calm. We arrived at the Stone Fort at three o'clock in the afternoon, but had to remain there till next day, awaiting the arrival of conveyances from Winnipeg. Mr. McKay and I left the Stone Fort on the 30th at seven a.m. leaving our baggage and a portion of the provisions which had not been used to be forwarded by the steamer Swallow, and reached Fort Garry at ten o'clock, thus terminating a journey of over one thousand miles, and having satisfactorily closed a treaty with the Saulteaux and Swampy Crees, which will prove of much importance in view of the probable rapid settlement of the west coast of Lake Winnipeg. The journey, moreover, is of interest, as having been the first occasion on which a steam vessel entered the waters of Berens River and of the Nelson River, the waters of which river fall into the Hudson's Bay, and as having demonstrated the practicability of direct steam navigation through a distance of three hundred and sixty miles from the city of Winnipeg to Norway House. I may mention here that the prevalence of timber suitable for fuel and building purposes, of lime and sandstone, of much good soil, and natural hay lands on the west shore of the lake, together with the great abundance of white fish, sturgeon and other fish in the lake, will ensure, ere long, a large settlement.

The east coast is much inferior to the west coast, as far as I could learn, but appeared to be thickly wooded, and it is understood that indications of minerals have been found in several places.

I now beg to call your attention to the boundaries of the treaty, which, you will observe, vary somewhat from those suggested in your memorandum to the Privy Council. The Commissioners adopted as the southern boundary of the treaty limits, the northern boundary of Treaties Numbers Two and Three. They included in the limits all the territory to which the Indians ceding, claimed hunting and other rights, but they fixed the western boundary as defined in the treaty, for the following reasons:

1st. The extension of the boundary carries the treaty to the western limit of the lands claimed by the Saulteaux and Swampy Cree Tribes of Indians, and creates an eastern base for the treaties to be made with the Plain Crees next year.

2nd. The Swampy Crees at the Pas, on the Saskatchewan, would otherwise have had to be included in the western treaties.

3rd. That the extension of the boundaries will add some six hundred to the number of Indians in the suggested limits, of whom three hundred at Wahpahhuha or the Pas on the Saskatchewan would have had to be treated with owing to the navigation of the Saskatchewan, in any event.

4th. The inclusion of the Norway House Indians in the treaty, and the surrender of their rights, involved a larger area of territory.

5th. That a number of the Norway House Indians came from Moose Lake and the Cumberland region, and possessed rights there which have been included in the boundaries.

6th. Unless the boundaries had been properly defined, in conformity with known geographical points, a portion of the country lying between the territories formerly ceded and those comprised in Treaty Number Five, would have been left with the Indian title unextinguished.

For these reasons, the Commissioners defined the boundaries as they are laid down in the treaty, and it will remain with the Government to send a Commissioner to the Pas to obtain the adhesion of the Indians there to the treaty next summer, or not as they shall decide, though the Commissioners strongly urge that step to be taken as a necessity.

I forward the original of the treaty to you by the Hon. Mr. Christie, and in order to the better understanding of the treaty area, I enclose a very valuable map copied from one made for me at my request on board of the Colville, by Roderick Ross, Esq., who accompanied me from Norway House to the Stone Fort, and to whom I was indebted for much valuable assistance and co-operation, as we were in fact to the Company's officers generally. This map is prepared from actual observation, and locates many places not indicated on any existing map, and covering as it does an area of over 100,000 square miles, which, exclusive of the great waters, has been included in the treaty, possesses much value.

I enclose herewith duplicates of the pay sheets, a statement of the cash expenditure, shewing the balance on hand of the credit which was given me for the purposes of the treaty, and statements of the distribution of the provisions and of the clothing, and medals, as given to the chiefs and head men. These statements will shew that every arrangement was made to secure the utmost economy in effecting the treaty, and yet to give satisfaction to the Indians concerned.

I mention here that the Indians were uniformly informed that no back payments of the present would be made to those who did not attend the meetings with the Commissioners, but that next year those not present would receive payment with the others, if they presented themselves.

I have to express my sense of the services rendered to the Government by my associate the Hon. James McKay, and the Hon. Thomas Howard, who acted as Secretary and Pay Master to the Commissioners as well as of the many kind services we received from Captain Hackland, and the other officers of the Colville, from the Wesleyan Missionaries, and from the officers of the Hudson's Bay Company.

I take this opportunity of suggesting that the supervision of Treaty Number Five, and the carrying out of the treaty obligations with the Indians of the St. Peter's Band, and of those of Fort Alexander and the River Roseau and Broken Head, which fall into Lake Winnipeg, should be entrusted to a local agent, stationed at the Stone Fort or in the vicinity of St. Peter's, and who would thence supervise the whole District.

In conclusion, I have only to express the hope that the action of the Commissioners, which in every respect was governed by a desire to promote the public interest, will receive the approval of the Privy Council, and be regarded by them as the satisfactory discharge of an onerous and responsible duty.

I have the honor to be, Sir,
Your obedient servant,
ALEXANDER MORRIS,
Lieut.-Gov. N. W. T.

GOVERNMENT HOUSE,
FORT GARRY 17th November, 1876.

TO THE HONORABLE THE MINISTER OF THE INTERIOR.

Sir,--I recommended in my despatch of the 7th June, that measures should be adopted to secure the adhesion of the Indians, who had not been met with when Treaty Number Five was concluded, and was requested by you to entrust the duty to Mr. Graham, of the Indian Department here, or to the Hon. Thomas Howard, Mr. Graham was unable to leave the office. I therefore entrusted the matter to Mr. Howard and J. Lestock Reid, D.L.S. I gave these gentleman written instructions, a copy of which will be found appended to the report of Mr. Howard, in which I directed them to meet the Island Indians and those of Berens River together, and then to separate, Mr. Reid proceeding to Norway House and Mr. Howard to the Grand Rapids of the Saskatchewan and the Pas, this course being necessary to enable the work to be accomplished during the season. I have pleasure in informing you that these gentlemen discharged their mission most successfully and satisfactorily, as will be seen from the following reports, which I enclose, viz:--

A. Joint report of Messrs. Howard and Reid as to the Island Indians of Lake Winnipeg and those of Berens River.

B. Report of Mr. Howard as to the band at the Grand Rapids, and as to his negotiations with the Indians at the Pas.

C. Report of Mr. Reid with regard to the Norway House Indians.

D. Report of Mr. Howard, submitting the accounts of the expenditure incurred in carrying out my instructions.

1. It will appear from these reports that the Commissioners obtained the assent of the scattered bands among the islands and shores of Lake Winnipeg, and had them united in a band with one Chief and his Councillors.

2. That the Indians of the Grand Rapids of the Berens River accepted the treaty, being received as part of the band of Jacob Berens, and that the latter band wish their reserves to be allotted them and some hay lands assigned.

3. That the Norway House Indians contemplate removal to Fisher's River, on Lake Winnipeg.

4. That the Indians of Grand Rapids have removed, as they agreed to do last year from the point where they had settled on the Saskatchewan, and which had been set apart as the site of a town.

5. That the Indians of the Pas, Cumberland, and Moose Lake gave their adhesion to the treaty and, subject to the approval of the Privy Council, have agreed upon the localities for their reserves.

6. That the bands at the Grand Rapids, the Pas, and Cumberland are in a sufficiently advanced position to be allowed the grant for their schools.

I forward herewith the balance sheet of Mr. Howard for the receipts and disbursements connected with the completion of the treaty and the payments, as also the various vouchers in support thereof. I placed the charge of the financial arrangements in the hands of Mr. Howard, on whom also fell the longest period of service in the work entrusted to the Commissioners.

I also forward by parcel post, registered, the original of the assents to the treaty of the various bands.

To prevent complications and misunderstandings, it would be desirable that many of the reserves should be surveyed without delay, and, from Mr. Reid's connection with the treaty, and his fitness for the work, I think that he would be a suitable person to be employed in the duty.

I would remark in conclusion, that I requested Mr. Provencher to obtain the assent to the treaty of the band at the mouth of the Black River, and that be informs me that he obtained their adhesion and has so reported to you. The having obtained the assent of the whole of the Indians within the region treated for so far, is a most satisfactory feature of the year's operations.

I have, &c.,
ALEXANDER MORRIS,
Lieut.-Governor.

A.

WINNIPEG, October 10th, 1876.
TO THE HON. ALEXANDER MORRIS,
Lieutenant-Governor, Fort Garry.

Sir,--Under instructions received from you, dated 14th July last, we were directed to proceed to the Dog Head Point and Berens River, on Lake Winnipeg, and there obtain the adhesion of certain Indians to the treaty that was made and concluded at Norway House last year, and we have now the honor to report....

With a fair wind and fine weather we reached the Narrows on Monday afternoon, the 24th, at half-past four. Mr. Howard called at the Hudson's Bay Company's post to see about the provisions stored there, where he found Thickfoot and the Jack-Fish Head Indians encamped, about twenty-five families in all, and learned from them that they were desirous to meet and speak to us where they were, and not across the Narrows at the Dog Head; but as the place of meeting was distinctly fixed, Mr. Howard informed them that they would have to move their camps.

Mr. Reid having, in the meantime, gone to the Dog Head Point, was received with a salute from the Indians there encamped, viz.: the Blood Vein River, Big Island and Sandy Bar bands, and, almost simultaneously with Mr. Howard's arrival there, the Indians belonging to Thickfoot and the Jack-Fish Head arrived also.

We hardly had time to make our camp before being waited upon by a representative from all the bands except Thickfoot's, and they desired to know when we would be prepared to have a conference; and, having told them that the following day, the 25th, was the day appointed, and that we would meet them at eleven o'clock in the morning, we gave them some provisions and they withdrew. Thickfoot subsequently called upon us and stated that he was prepared at any time to meet us and sign the treaty, that he had learned that it was our intention to make only one Chief for all the Indians gathered there; that he had felt when the paper was placed in his hands last year by the Governor, that he was making him the Chief; that he had notified all the Indians that were there as he had agreed, and that they had threatened him with violence for saying he was to be Chief, and that he was afraid now to join them in any way, and that he and his band wished to be spoken to by themselves. Upon hearing this, we informed him that he need not be afraid of violence, that the paper the Governor gave him merely stated that he was a principal Indian, and we would certainly recognize him as such, and if the Indians desired him to be their Chief it would be a great pleasure to us.

The following morning the Indians sent word by a representative from each band, except Thickfoot's, that they desired another day to meet in council before having a conference; but, feeling they had sufficient time already, yet not wishing to hurry them too much, we extended the hour of meeting to four o'clock on the same day, which satisfied them, and when they promised to be ready.

About three o'clock, we were informed that the Indians had gathered, so we at once proceeded to meet them. The place we had chosen for the conference was on a granite plateau, and at one end our crews had erected a covering with boughs; a more suitable spot for the meeting could not be found.

After inquiring if they had all gathered, and, being assured that they had, we began to explain the object of our mission, but immediately saw that the bands were determined to be considered distinct and wished to be treated with separately, when we informed them that only one Chief would be allowed, and that before we could proceed any further we would require them all to meet together in council and there select one Chief and three Councillors, and be prepared to present them to us on the following day. This evidently gave great satisfaction to the Island Band, of which Ka-tuk-e-pin-ais was head man, but they all withdrew; before doing so, agreeing to be ready the next day at noon to meet us.

Before the hour appointed for the meeting the next day, another delegation came over and informed us that the Indians were not yet prepared, that they could not come to any decision as to who should be Chief, and again asked to have the hour of meeting extended to three o'clock, which we did upon the understanding that if they were not then prepared we would return and report the facts to you.

Shortly after, we noticed Thickfoot and his Indians sitting near our tents, and evidently taking no part in the selection of a Chief, so we called him over and found him still disinclined to join the other Indians. He stated that they would not have him as Chief, and that he would therefore remain away. We then explained that he could be head man of his band by being elected a Councillor to whoever would be appointed Chief, and at last prevailing upon him to go with his Indians to the Council tent, we requested the Rev. Mr. Cochrane to proceed to the Indian encampment and state to them that from each band other than the one from which the chief was chosen, a Councillor would have to be taken. By this means we saw our way to satisfy all the bands, and Mr. Cochrane having notified the Indians accordingly, we felt confident the choice of a chief would soon be made; but in this we were disappointed, as a messenger shortly after arrived and said no choice could be made, as Ka-tuk-e-pin-ais would do nothing unless he was chosen Chief. On hearing this Mr. Cochrane decided to visit the Indians in Council, and, having done so, proposed to them that they should elect a Chief by ballot, and having got them all to agree to this proposition, they proceeded to the election. Several ballots had to be taken, and at last resulted in favor of the chief Indian of the Blood Vein River band, Sa-ha-cha-way-ass, and the Councillors elected were the head men from the Big Island, Doghead and Jack-Fish Head bands.

At three o'clock p.m., we were notified that the Indians had again gathered, when we proceeded to the place of meeting, and were presented to the Chief and two of his Councillors. Ka-tuk-e-pin-ais, the third Councillor, coming forward, said his band did not want him to act as Councillor; that he had seen the Governor the other day, and had been told by him that he would be the Chief of the Island Indians. Whereupon we informed him that no such promise had been made by you, and that we could only recognize the choice of the majority. He then desired to withdraw from the negotiations, and wait until he saw you, before signing the treaty; but as we had learned that out of the twenty-two families that were in his band, all, with one or two exceptions, had received the annuity since 1870, with the St. Peter's Band, we made them sit by themselves, and then explained that by receiving the annuity as a large number of them had done, they had really agreed to the treaty and that we were there only to deal with those of the band that had at no time received money from the Queen. Ka-tuk-e-pin-ais then said that there were very few of his Indians that had not received money from the Queen, but that he never had; that he was quite prepared to sign the treaty now, only some of his people did not want him to do so, unless we agreed to give them the Big Island for a reserve. This we at once refused, and at the same time told them that unless he and all his band agreed to the terms we offered them without further delay, they might return to their homes. Hearing this, they all withdrew, but soon returned, when Ka-tuk-e-pin-ais said one or two of his people did not want him to sign any treaty, but most of them did, and that he was going to do so. He then took his seat along with the Chiefs and other Councillors, and we proceeded to explain the terms of the treaty. When we came to the clause referring to the reserves, each band was anxious that the places where they are in the habit of living should be granted them as reserves, and the locations of the same mentioned in the treaty; but as our instructions were positive on this point, we refused but assured them that the names of the places they asked for, we would certainly forward with our report to you, and we stated that with the exception of the location asked for by the Sandy Bar Indians, we felt sure the Government would grant their request, and give them their reserves where they desired. The following were the localities mentioned:--

DOG HEAD BAND.--The point opposite the Dog Head.
BLOOD VEIN RIVER BAND.--At mouth of Blood Vein River.
BIG ISLAND BAND.--At mouth of Badthroat River.
JACK-FISH HEAD BAND.--The north side of Jack Head Point, at the Lobstick, and the
SANDY BAR BAND.--White Mud River, west side of Lake Winnipeg.

It must be remembered that four bands out of the above named, viz.:--Big Island, Jack-Fish Head, Dog Head and Blood Vein River, are distinct bands, those at Sandy Bar really belonging to the St. Peter's Band of Indians and that they have always lived at the different points upon the lake from which they take their names, and they therefore look upon these points as their homes. We would, therefore, beg to recommend that the request of of all, with the exception of the Sandy Bar Indians, be granted, although in doing so we are aware of the desire of the Government that Indians should not be encouraged to break up into small bands, yet we feel sure in this instance it would be impossible to get them all upon any one reserve.

The adhesion we had signed on Wednesday evening, July 26th, and we then arranged to begin the payments of annuities the following morning at nine o'clock, which was done, and the payments completed by four o'clock on the same day. We then distributed the implements, ammunition, twine, and balance of provisions.

As already stated, the Indians at Sandy Bar, were formerly paid with the St. Peter's band. They are now included in the limits of Treaty Five, and desire to receive their annuity with the Island band.

Having distributed the presents, we immediately moved our camp to an island about a quarter of a mile from the Point, and there remained until Saturday morning, the 29th, when, having a favourable wind, we set sail and arrived off the mouth of Berens River, and camped on Lobstick Island the following morning, Sunday, at half-past nine o'clock.

We remained there until Tuesday, and then moved our camp to the Methodist Mission. The next day we went over in one of our boats to the Hudson's Bay Company's post, where we met Mr. Flett, the officer in charge and received from him the provisions that had been previously forwarded and which he had in store, and then returned to our camp.

Mr. Flett informed us that the Indians from the Narrows of Berens River, he expected would arrive that evening, and on Thursday, visited us to say that they had arrived and were then holding a council. The same afternoon the Chief and Councillors called upon us and desired to know when we would be prepared to meet them, and though the 5th was the day appointed, we thought it advisable, as all the Indians were then gathered there, and were anxious to return to their homes, to appoint the following day, the 4th August.

The next morning the Indians came over from where they were encamped near the Hudson's Bay post, in York boats; and when we learned that they were all in the school-house we proceeded there, and met, in addition to the Berens River band, about thirty Indians from the Grand Rapids of Berens River. We explained the object of our mission, and found the Indians from the Rapids most anxious to accept the Queen's bounty and benevolence, some of them had already accepted the annuity with the Lac Seule Indians we found, so we immediately told them that it was only to those that had not previously received money or presents from the Queen, that the first part of our mission extended, and with whom it was necessary we should first speak. The head man, Num-ak-ow-ah-nuk-wape, then said that he was fully prepared, on behalf of all his Indians, to accept the same terms as given to the Berens River band, only be wanted his reserve where he then lived, at the Grand Rapids; upon which we told him that before we could speak further, we must be assured by the band that he was their head man, and this the band at once did. We then thought it advisable to recommend that they should make the Chief of the Berens River band their Chief, and make their head man a Councillor to him, and although our proposition was not at once received satisfactorily, we ultimately prevailed upon them to accept it, and the Chief was at once elected. By this means we saved the expenses necessarily incurred in maintaining one Chief and two Councillors. We then stated that we were prepared to grant them their reserve where they asked for it; and having explained the treaty to them, clause by clause, and mentioned in the adhesion where the reserve should be, the adhesion was duly signed by the Chief and Councillors. The payment of the annuity was then gone on with and finished that afternoon at four o'clock.

We then distributed the implements, ammunition, twine and provisions. When we had finished, the Chief and Councillors came forward, and thanked us for all that had been done for them; they said they were well pleased with what they had received and desired us to inform you of the fact, which we accordingly promised. They then returned in the same boats they had come over in: before leaving the bank, giving three cheers for the Queen and three for the Governor.

We are very much pleased to inform you that the best possible feeling appears to exist between the Indians in this region. They all appeared anxious to farm and settle down, and we heard that a number of houses had been built at Poplar River, and considerable clearing done there since the treaty was made with them last year; the implements and tools we brought them were therefore most acceptable. As these bands live at a considerable distance from each other, we would recommend that an extra supply of tools be allowed them. We also feel satisfied that the animals promised by the treaty might be furnished, as we certainly consider them in a position to take care of the same.

As you directed, we informed them that their application for hay lands had been forwarded to the Government, and this gave them great satisfaction. The following morning, Saturday, August 5th, Mr. Reid left for Norway House, and during the afternoon of the same day, Mr. Howard sailed for the Stone Fort on the Red River.

Having obtained the adhesion of the Indians at the Dog Head, and at Berens River, our duties as Joint Commissioners under your instructions ceased....

We were fortunate enough to secure the services of the Rev. Henry Cochrane, who kindly acted as interpreter. Being in the Province on a visit from his mission at the Pas, and desirous of returning, Mr. Howard gave him a passage in his boat, and he rendered us the most valuable assistance throughout.

Having thus referred to the different matters connected with our mission while acting together, and assuring you that our aim and desire was to fulfill it to your entire satisfaction, which we trust we have done,

We have the honor to be, Sir,

Your obedient servants,
THOS. HOWARD,
J. LESTOCK REID,
Commissioners.

B.

WINNIPEG, October 10th, 1876.

TO THE HONORABLE ALEXANDER MORRIS,
Lieutenant-Governor, Fort Garry.

Sir,--I have the honor to inform you that in compliance with your instructions, a copy of which I hereunto annex, I proceeded, accompanied by Mr. Reid, to the Dog Head and Berens River on Lake Winnipeg, and there successfully secured the adhesion of the Island and Grand Rapids of Berens River Bands of Indians to Treaty Number Five, and, having paid the annuities to the Berens River Indians, returned to the Stone Fort. As mentioned in the joint report submitted to you by Mr. Reid and myself, I had the greatest difficulty in procuring a boat to take me on my mission, and only through the kindness of Mr. Flett, of the Hudson's Bay Company, at the Stone Fort, was I able to obtain even the loan of one as far as Berens River, from where I had to return it....

I left the Stone Fort for the Grand Rapids, on the morning of the 17th of August, and after a very fast, though rough and dangerous passage, reached the mouth of the Saskatchewan river, early on the morning of the 26th. I found, on entering the river, that the Indians were encamped near its mouth, on the south bank, where I landed, and arranged to meet them at noon that day. As the provisions were stored at the Hudson's Bay Company's post, about a mile and a half up the river, I decided to camp at the foot of the road leading across the four-mile Portage, and having done so, and in the meantime sent the provisions to the Indian camp, I returned there at the time agreed upon. The band having assembled, I stated to them the object of my mission--that I had been directed to pay them the annuity and deliver some of the tools and implements granted them by the treaty, and also to distribute amongst those that formerly had houses and gardens on the north bank of the river, and had moved to where they were then living, as stipulated in the treaty, the sum of five hundred dollars. To my surprise, the Chief at once expressed his astonishment at my saying that the treaty had been made last year, and said he had only a talk then with the Governor preliminary to making the treaty this year, and that they were only then prepared to be treated with. I explained to the band how I had been present myself when it was made, and that I would have it read to them. I accordingly requested Mr. Cochrane to do so, explaining it thoroughly; yet, it was only after a great deal of talking on their part, during which they made most unreasonable demands, and many explanations on my part, that the Indians were satisfied that a treaty had been made, when they requested me to go on with the payments; at the same time a number of them stated that they had been misled by one of the counsellors, Joseph Atkinson by name. I then paid the annuity, distributed the provisions, tools, implements, etc., and gave the Chief a copy of the treaty, and, arranging to meet them again on Monday the 28th, I returned to my camp at midnight.

On Monday, I met them as agreed, and at once began and made inquiries as to who had houses and gardens on the north bank and had moved their houses to the south bank, and I found that all those that had formerly lived on the north bank had removed from there. I noticed that great feeling existed amongst them all as to the division of the five hundred dollars granted. All the band congregated round me and the large majority desired that the amount should be divided equally between them all, and claimed that every one belonging to the band was entitled to participate in the division; so I thought it best to leave it to themselves to decide how the amount should be distributed, and they only succeeded in doing so after a great deal of talking, and, I regret to say, quarrelling; but they at last arranged it, and I was requested by the Chief and Councillors to divide it amongst the whole band in such proportions as I thought right, so I proceeded at once to what turned out to be a long and troublesome undertaking; but having as I considered made a fair and equitable distribution of the amount, I paid the same, had the document witnessed by the Chief and Councillors, and only got back to my camp again at midnight. As I before said, all the Indians had removed to the south bank of the river, but had made no preparations to build, and were merely living in tents. Close to the encampment, at the mouth of the river, the Church Missionary Society have put up a large building to answer the purposes of a church and school-house. Care must be taken and strict watch kept over this band. Living as they do on the bank of a navigable river, where people are constantly passing, they can give great trouble and annoyance, and, I am sorry to say, are inclined to do so. Several complaints were made to me while there, and I spoke to the Indians regarding them. They promised me to abide faithfully by the terms of the treaty henceforth and not give any further annoyance.

While occupied paying the Indians there, my crew were engaged in taking my boat and supplies across the Portage. They left the camp early on Monday morning, and with the assistance kindly rendered them by Mr. Matheson, of the Hudson's Bay Company, succeeded in reaching the north end of the Portage on Tuesday evening. That same afternoon I walked over the four-mile Portage and found there a number of buildings belonging to the Hudson's Bay Company. To this point the Saskatchewan River steamer Northcote descends and receives the supplies for the different posts belonging to the Company to the West and North-West.

On Wednesday morning, the 30th, I left for the Pas. From the Grand Rapids to the Narrows, before entering Cedar Lake, a distance of eighteen or twenty miles, a continuous rapid extends, and it is only by tracking and poling simultaneously that you are at all able to ascend the river. The first day I made only nine miles on my way and camped at the Demi Charge, and it was late in the evening on the second day when I reached Cedar Lake. This lake is about thirty-five miles in length and is very shallow and dangerous in stormy weather. I was fortunate enough to have very calm weather, and, therefore, crossed it without any delay and entered the Saskatchewan again at the Che-ma-wa-win or "Seining place," early on Saturday morning, September 2nd. Noticing a large encampment of Indians there, I landed and found they were part of the Moose Lake band. They desired that I should treat with them where they were, and not bring them to the Pas, but upon my telling them that I could only treat with them at the appointed place of meeting, they readily assented to follow me up, and having given them some provisions to take them there, and secured the services of one of them to act as guide, I again started on my journey.

I was then three days and two nights ascending the river, and on Tuesday morning, the 5th September, the day appointed for me to meet the Indians, I arrived at the Pas or Devon Mission, on my way up having been passed by the Indians from the Che-ma-wa-win.

On entering the river after leaving Cedar Lake the whole aspect of the country changes, and from there to the Pas, and, I understand, for fully one hundred miles above it, nothing but marsh can be seen; so much so that it was difficult along the bank of the river to find a spot dry enough to camp upon, and I was, consequently, obliged to eat and sleep in my boat. The dreariness of this voyage can hardly be realized, and it was with feelings of delight that I landed at the Mission at the Pas where the Rev. Mr. Cochrane received me.

Mr. Cochrane had accompanied me from the Stone Fort and had been in my boat up to the night before I arrived, when, meeting some Indians that were on the look-out for us, he returned with them in their canoe and reached his home shortly before I arrived.

The Pas or Devon Mission is situated on the south bank of the Saskatchewan, distant, I should say, one hundred and forty miles from Grand Rapids. The Church Missionary Society have a very nice church, school-house and parsonage there; and the Hudson's Bay Company one of their posts. There are also a large number of houses belonging to the Indians of the place; and on the other bank the firm of Kew, Stobart & Co., have erected a store for trading purposes. There are also several dwelling-houses on the north bank. Altogether, the appearance of the place, on my arrival, was most prepossessing. The banks were covered with Indians with their canoes, and immediately the boat rounded the point below the Mission and came in view a salute was fired, the like of which, I was subsequently told, had never been heard in the "Ratty Country".

Having landed at the Mission, Mr. Cochrane informed me that he had, as I requested, summoned the Indians to meet in the school-house at three o'clock that afternoon, and when the hour arrived I proceeded there and found upwards of five hundred Indians gathered. I stated the object of my mission to them, and was at once assured of their desire to accept of, and their gratitude for, the Queen's bounty and benevolence.

I found that the Pas and Cumberland bands of Indians had acknowledged Chiefs, but that the Moose Lake band had none, owing to a division amongst them. It appeared that the Indians from the Che-ma-wa-win desired to be a distinct band and have their reserves where I had seen them at the entrance of the river from Cedar Lake; but noticing, on my way up, the unfitness of the locality for a reserve, and having learned that at Moose Lake, where part of the band desired to live, a most suitable locality could be had, I had decided before meeting them upon the course I should take, which was, not to encourage the division in the band, and allow only one Chief; and this I did, and succeeded, without much trouble, in getting the band to unite. I then requested all the Indians to meet in council and select their Chief and head men, and be prepared the following morning to present them to me, when I would be ready to speak to them.

The next morning at eleven o'clock I met them and found they had done as I requested, and having been presented to the Chiefs and Councillors I proceeded to explain the terms of the treaty that I desired to receive their adhesion to. The Chiefs immediately stated that they wanted to make a treaty of their own, and it was only after great difficulty that I could make them understand that in reality it was not a new treaty they were about to make.

They had heard of the terms granted the Indians at Carlton, and this acted most prejudicially at one time against the successful carrying out of my mission; but I at last made them understand the difference between their position and the Plain Indians, by pointing out that the land they would surrender would be useless to the Queen, while what the Plain Indians gave up would be of value to her for homes for her white children. They then agreed to accept the terms offered if I would agree to give them reserves where they desired; and to their demands I patiently listened, and having at last come to a satisfactory understanding I adjourned the meeting to the following day.

Before proceeding further, I would draw your attention to the localities I granted for reserves, subject to the approval of the Government, and beg to inform you that I made every inquiry as to the extent of farming land in each locality mentioned.

At the Narrows, at Moose Lake, there is considerable good land, and a suitable place for a reserve can be had for the Moose Lake band.

For the Pas and Cumberland Indians I had to mention several localities. At the Pas all the land obtainable is now cultivated, and consists of a vegetable garden and one field attached to the Mission, and a few patches of potatoes here and there. A short distance from the river the marsh begins, and extends to the south for miles; and the same thing occurs to the north. In fact, on both banks of the river at this point, and from the Che-ma-wa-win up to it, one hundred and fifty acres of land fit for cultivation cannot be found; and about Cumberland the country in every respect is similar.

The following day, Thursday the 7th, I met the Indians at three p.m., and had the adhesion read to them and signed. I then presented the medals and clothing to the Chiefs and Councillors, with which they were greatly pleased, and having congratulated them upon wearing the Queen's uniform, and having in return been heartily thanked by them for what had been done, I proceeded to pay them, and continued to do so up to seven o'clock, when the funds at my disposal being exhausted, I directed them to meet me again the following morning at nine o'clock, which they did, and I completed the payments the same evening at five o'clock. I then distributed the balance of provisions and the ammunition and twine. The implements and tools I had been unable to bring from Grand Rapids, my boat being very heavily laden; but Mr. Belanger, of the Hudson's Bay Company, kindly promised to have them brought up free of charge in a boat that was going to the Grand Rapids in a few days; I therefore gave the Chief of the Pas band an order for the chest of tools and the implements.

The following day, Saturday, having again seen all the Chiefs and Councillors and received their thanks, and after many expressions of gratitude from the Indians gathered, I left the Pas at half-past two o'clock p.m., and with rowing and floating alternately during the afternoon and night, reached the Che-ma-wa-win on Sunday evening; crossed Cedar Lake on Monday, and landed at the head of Grand Rapids on Tuesday morning. I then ran the rapids and hoisted the sail at the mouth of the river at two p.m., having called upon Mr. Matheson and seen the Chief of the Indians there on my way down. I then made all haste to return here, but, owing to contrary winds, only succeeded in reaching the Stone Fort on the 20th September, yet, having made a very quick trip, unprecedented in fact, and in carrying out the mission entrusted to me, travelled in an open boat, thirteen hundred miles.

I would now inform you that three out of the four bands of Indians I met on the Saskatchewan, viz., the Grand Rapids, Pas and Cumberland, are in a position to receive at once from the Government the grant allowed for the maintenance of schools of instruction; at the Grand Rapids a huge school-house is by this time entirely completed; and at the Pas and Cumberland, schools, under the charge of the Church Missionary Society, have been in existence some years. The Indians belonging to the bands I have named desired that the assistance promised should be given as soon as possible.

I would now mention the very valuable services rendered the Government by the Rev. Mr. Cochrane, who acted as interpreter at the Dog Head, Berens River, Grand Rapids and the Pas, and who was at all times ready to give his advice and assistance; as well as by Mr. A. M. Muckle, who accompanied me and assisted in making the payments; and by Mr. Nursey, who took charge of the boat with supplies for the Pas. To Mr. Matheson, of the Hudson's Bay Company, Grand Rapids, and Mr. Belanger, of Cumberland House, I am deeply indebted, and take this opportunity of tendering these gentlemen my sincere thanks for the assistance rendered me and the many kindnesses I received from them. I enclose herewith the pay-sheet of the different bands I paid, a statement of the cash expenditure, and statements shewing quantities of provisions, implements, etc., received and how distributed, with a statement of clothing, medals, etc., given to the Chiefs and Councillors, and a report I received from Mr. Bedson.

And, trusting that the manner in which I have carried out the mission entrusted to my care, may meet with your approval,

I have the honor to be, Sir,
Your obedient servant,
THOMAS HOWARD,
Commissioner.

FORT GARRY, July 14th, 1876.

TO THE HON. THOS. HOWARD AND J. LESTOCK REID, ESQ.

Dear sirs,--Under authority from the Minister of the Interior, I have to request you to proceed to Lake Winnipeg for the purpose of--on behalf of the Privy Council of Canada--securing the adhesion to Treaty Number Five of the Indians who have not yet been dealt with, and to make the necessary payments to the others.

1st. You will, if possible, together proceed to or meet at the following places, being there on the days named, viz.: Dog Head Point, 25th July, and Berens River on the 5th August.

2nd. Mr. Howard will then proceed to the mouth of the Saskatchewan, so as to reach there on the 25th of August, and then arrive at the Pas on the 5th of September.

3rd. Mr. Reid will proceed from Berens River to Norway House, to arrive there on or before the 25th of August.

4th. You or either of you will secure the adhesion of the Island Indians to the treaty after the form annexed, and will request them to select a Chief and three Councillors, and will be authorized to promise them a reserve of one hundred and sixty acres to each family of five, or that proportion for larger or smaller families, to be selected for them by the person chosen for that end by the Privy Council with their approval.

5th. You or either of you will obtain the adhesion of the Indians of the Grand Rapids of Berens River to the treaty according to the form annexed. You will ask them to select a Chief and three Councillors. A similar provision will be made as to a reserve, but if necessary you can fix the locality at the Sandy Narrows above the rapids on the Berens River, reserving free navigation and access to the shores to all Her Majesty's subjects.

6th. Mr. Reid will pay the Norway House and Cross Lake Indians, and will ascertain the intentions of the Norway House Indians as to the time of their removal to Fisher River, of which I am unadvised.

7th. Mr. Howard will pay the Indians at the mouth of the Saskatchewan, and if the Indians have removed their houses, as agreed by the treaty, will pay them five hundred dollars, but if not and some have removed, will pay such their proportionate share of the five hundred dollars.

8th. You will distribute the implements, tools, etc. sent among the Indians, as also the ammunition and twine. Cattle cannot be given till the Indians are sufficiently settled on the reserves to make it seem that they will be cared for. You will report any cases where you find this to be the case, for future action.

9th. You will inform the Berens River Indians that their application for a hay reserve has been forwarded to the Privy Council by me, and that they will receive a reply hereafter.

10th. Mr. Howard will secure the adhesion of the Indians at the Pas to the treaty providing that reserves of one hundred and sixty acres to each family of five will be granted at places selected for them by an officer of the Privy Council, with their approval; but it will probably be necessary to give them a reserve at the Pas where they reside, reserving carefully free navigation and access to the shores. As the extent of land there is very narrow, it may be desirable to indicate localities where farming reserves will be granted subject to the approval of the Privy Council.

11th. The Moose Lake Indians are a distinct band, and will probably desire the recognition of two separate Chiefs and the allotment of separate reserves to them.

12th. The Cumberland House Indians are another band, but very much scattered; the question of a reserve will have to be considered, and, in connection with it, as in other cases, respect for actual, bona fide, substantial improvements, and for the rights of settlers.

13th. In all cases the places indicated for reserves to be subject to Her Majesty's approval in Council, and free navigation and access to the shores to be reserved.

14th. In the case of new adhesions to the treaty, which are in fact new treaties, only five dollars is to be paid, but persons belonging to bands treated with last year are to receive last year's payment, if then absent, if necessary.

15th. You will each take with you a suitable person, to be approved of by me, to assist you in the payment.

I have the honor to be,
Your obedient servant,
ALEXANDER MORRIS,
Lieut.-Governor.

C.

WINNIPEG, October 14th 1876.

TO THE HON. ALEXANDER MORRIS,

Lieut.-Governor.

Sir,--Referring to your letter of instructions under date of the 14th of July, relative to the payment of the Norway House and Cross Lake bands of Indians, I have the honor to submit the following report:--

Having, in co-operation with the Hon. Thomas Howard, paid the Indians of Berens River and successfully secured the adhesion of the Island and Upper Berens River bands of Indians to Treaty Number Five, on the morning of Saturday, the 5th of August, I left for Norway House, which place, owing to stormy weather and strong head winds, I did not succeed in reaching until the morning of the 12th. On the way I was met by Indians proceeding to inspect their reserve at Fisher's River, who brought a letter from the Chiefs of Norway House and Cross Lake, stating that the Indians were all assembled, and requesting to be paid at the earliest possible date.

On reaching this place, Norway House, after having camp pitched at a short distance from the fort, I dispatched messengers to the several camps and villages, notifying the Indians of my arrival and desiring the Chiefs to meet me on the Monday morning following. On Sunday evening divine service was held within the fort by the Rev. Mr. Ruttan, Wesleyan missionary, at which a large number of Indians were present.

On Monday morning, the Chiefs and most of the Indians of both bands having assembled at my camp, the Cross Lake band requested to be paid there, and the Norway House Chief asked that his people might he paid in the school-house in their village about two miles from the fort. On hearing that all the Indians that could come were assembled, I consented to pay them where they desired, and told the Cross Lake Chief to bring his people at noon to receive their gratuities, the payment which was satisfactorily completed the same day.

The next day I crossed over to the Indian village and paid the Norway House bands their annuities....

The following morning, Wednesday, August 16th, the Chiefs and Indians of the two bands having assembled at my camp, I distributed the provisions implements, &c., which were received with the greatest degree of gratification and satisfaction.

On my inquiring of the Chief of Norway House when his band would be prepared to remove to their reserve at the Fisher River, he informed me that he had sent two of his people to that locality to report on the same, and that he could not say anything definite on the matter until their return. I might here state that, on my way back to Winnipeg I met these men returning from Fisher's River, who expressed themselves as highly pleased with the proposed location, and that the band in all probability would remove there in the spring.

Whilst at Norway House I was waited upon by a Chief and four Councillors from the vicinity of Oxford House, who were anxious to know if the same bounties would be extended to them as were being extended to their brethren of Norway House and Cross Lake, and also whether they could obtain a reserve on Lake Winnipeg, as the country in which they were living was totally unfit for cultivation, and that they had the greatest difficulty in procuring a livelihood. I told them that I had no idea what were the intentions of the Government with regard to those Indians living north of the present Treaty, but that I would make known their requests to Your Excellency, and that they would be duly notified of any action the Government might take in the matter.

I left Norway House on my return trip, on the morning of the 18th, arriving at Winnipeg on the afternoon of Saturday the 26th, having that morning paid my boat's crew off at Selkirk.

I would here mention that previous to my departure from Norway House there was a very hearty and apparently sincere expression of gratitude, on the part of all the Indians present, for the liberality extended to them, and a general and spoken wish that their thanks be conveyed to the Queen's Representative in this Province for his kind interest in their welfare.

I cannot conclude without bearing testimony to the kindness of Mr. Ross, Hudson's Bay Company's Factor, and the Rev. Mr. Ruttan, Wesleyan missionary, for services rendered during the few days occupied in my making the payments at Norway House.

I enclose herewith statement of expenditure, &c., &c., with vouchers attached.

I have the honor to be, Sir,
Your obedient servant,
J. LESTOCK REID,
Commissioner.


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