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Treaty One Nation Commemorates 151 Years Since Signing of Treaty No. 1

Knowledge Keepers and Delegates Join Together in Ceremony and Feast

August 3, 2022 , Treaty One Territory, St. Andrews, Manitoba – Today, Treaty One Nation Chiefs and representatives from the Federal Government, the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, and the Southern Chiefs’ Organization gathered at Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site to mark the 151st commemoration of the signing of Treaty No. 1. To commemorate this important date in a special way, delegates celebrated by sharing in a Pipe and Water Ceremony while a Sacred Fire remained lit at Gabeshiwin, the site’s camp area.

Opening ceremonies were followed by remarks from the Treaty One Nation Knowledge Keepers Council on the history of Treaty No. 1 and followed by a feast. The Knowledge Keeper’s Council is composed of Elders from each of the seven Treaty No. 1 First Nations who guide all Treaty One Nation governing decisions. To honour our relationship today as a result of the Treaty, Elders shared that it is a time for all pray for ongoing reconciliation and offer prayers for good relations as were intended from the signing 151 years ago.

To commemorate the event at the site, Parks Canada interpreters offered visitors a special treaty-focused tour along with a variety of Indigenous-focused programming including making medicine wheel bracelets, fleshing hides, and baking bannock.

Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site is the location where Treaty No. 1 was originally negotiated and signed in 1871. This treaty was the first of the 11 numbered treaties signed between Canada and Turtle Island’s First Peoples. Treaty No. 1 was made with the understanding that the Treaty would be in place for “as long as the sun shines, the grass grows and the river flows”.

Treaty One Nation is composed of the seven First Nations who are signatories to the first of the numbered Treaties, originally signed on August 3, 1871, at Lower Fort Garry after several days of discussions and ceremonies.

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“151 years ago on this day, and after seven days of negotiations with our Treaty Partners, a significant agreement was made that still stands today. We welcomed settlement onto our lands and shared in the abundance of our resources. The Treaty One Nations are still here, just as we were 151 years ago. Our relationship is the foundation of the Treaty, and this relationship continues to evolve into what it was intended to be – Nation to Nation. Last week, Treaty One signed an agreement with the City of Winnipeg that solidifies our commitments to one another in sharing and benefitting from these lands. These new agreements, 151 years later, are starting to reflect the spirit and intent of Treaty One. It is my hope that we continue to set the standard for what our future can look like for all of our Treaty people. I would like to honour and acknowledge the significance of this day that brought us all to where we stand today. Miigwetch.”

Chief Gordon Bluesky
Chairperson, Treaty One Nation


“Parks Canada is committed to reconciliation and renewed relationships with Indigenous peoples, based on a recognition of rights, respect, co-operation and partnership. The annual commemoration of the signing of Treaty No. 1 at Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site serves as an opportunity to pause and remember the historical significance of that meeting. It is also a time to reflect on how, as an Agency, we can continue to strengthen our relationship with Indigenous partners moving forward.”

Terri Dionne
Superintendent, Manitoba Field Unit, Parks Canada

Quick Facts

  • Treaty No. 1 was signed on August 3, 1871, between the Anishinaabe and Muskegon Cree peoples and the Government of Canada. A Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada plaque commemorating this Treaty has been placed outside the west gate of Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site. In collaboration with Treaty One Nation, the text on this plaque is being reviewed to reflect a more accurate representation of the Treaty No. 1 signing.
  • On August 3, 2017, the Treaty No. 1 Legacy Flag Installation was unveiled at Lower Fort Garry to honour the creation of Treaty No. 1 and highlight the connection of the Treaty One Nation to the national historic site. This permanent feature includes each First Nation’s flag, as well as the Canadian flag and the Union Jack. The Legacy Flag Installation is located in an area just outside the Fort’s stone walls and is open for free public viewing year-round.
  • The seven First Nations that are represented in the Treaty No. 1 Legacy Flag Installation are: Peguis First Nation, Sagkeeng First Nation, Brokenhead Ojibway Nation, Roseau River Anishinaabe First Nation, Long Plain First Nation, Sandy Bay Ojibway First Nation and Swan Lake First Nation.


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Vic Savino
Director of Communications
Treaty One Nation | Cell: 204-770-0392