SS10 Expansion West Numbered Treaties

Numbered Treaties in Canada
Royal Proclamation of 1763
• British attempted to
divide North
America between
Europeans and First
• First Nations were
granted all land
NOT settled to the
west of Quebec
What is a Treaty?
• A treaty is a formal, written agreement
between sovereign states or between states
and international organizations.
• The AFN (Assembly of First Nations) maintain
that treaties were peer to peer lateral
agreements between sovereignties and
nothing less.
Others maintain that the Treaties were never valid
because of being:
1. coerced, accordingly not an agreement between
equal partners
2. breached many times in their history by the
government, notably by the Canadian Indian
Residential School system and resource
3. Not reached by agreement with the lawful
hereditary chiefs, and especially without the
involvement of women who by tradition often
had final authority
Where were the Numbered Treaties?
Numbered Treaties 1-5
Numbered Treaties 6-7
Numbered Treaties 8-11
What is the pattern?
• Westward movement?
• Why…
Why were they negotiated?
Canadian Government Perspective:
• Administration of Rupert’s Land and the
North-Western Territory was transferred to
the Canadian Government in 1869
• Canadian Law (RP 1763) recognized FNP had
title to the land
• Settlement could not take place if title was not
• Vital to the “National Dream” that title be
• Each treaty delineated a specific tract of land
whose title was held by a First Nation
• In exchange for surrendering their rights to
the land, First nations were promised a
smaller parcel of land as a reserve, annual
annuity payments, implements to either farm
or hunt and fish and the right to continue to
hunt and trap or hunt, trap and fish on the
tract surrendered.
Why would First Nations agree to this?
First Nations peoples had been decimated by:
• disease outbreaks
• the near-extinction of the plains bison
• Whiskey traders
• They were eager to receive aid from
Another Response…
• Red River Rebellion (1870)
• Northwest Rebellion (1885)
Historical Question
• Was this a “submit or starve” policy?
• How would they be negotiated today?

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