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Adhesion to Canadian Indian Treaties and the Lubicon Lake Dispute

  • Thomas Flanagan (a1)

Abstract

Research shows that adhesions to the numbered treaties were of two types: “internal” and “external.” In an internal adhesion, a band living within the previously ceded area agreed to the terms of the treaty, and no new transfer of land was involved. In an external adhesion, a band living outside the previously ceded area agreed to the terms of the treaty, thus adding a previously unceded piece of territory to the treaty area.

This distinction is essential to understanding the long-running Lubicon Lake dispute. From the federal government's point of view, all of northern Alberta was ceded in Treaty Eight; so the Lubicons, who live within this area, are entitled to make only an internal adhesion. In contrast, the Lubicons claim to live on unceded land and thus demand to make an external adhesion. Their claim to possess unextinguished aboriginal title to a specific tract of land is used to justify demands for compensation that would not be paid in the case of an internal adhesion.

Des recherches démontrent qu'il existait deux types d'adhésions aux traite's numérotés: les adhésions «internes» et les adhésions «externes». Dans le cas d'une adhésion interne, une bande habitant à l'intérieur d'un territoire précédemment cédé adhérait aux termes du traité et aucun nouveau transfert de terres n'était impliqué. Dans le cas d'une adhésion externe, une bande habitant à l'extérieur du terrain précédemment cédé adhérait aux termes du traité, ajoutant ainsi une parcelle de territoire non cédée préalablement au territoire couvert par le traité.

Cette distinction est essentielle à la compréhension de l'interminable dispute du lac Lubicon. Selon le gouvernement fédéral, tout le nord de l'Alberta a été cédé par le Traité Huit; par conséquent, les Lubicons, qui vivent à l'intérieur de ce territoire, ne sont en droit de demander qu'une adhésion interne. Au contraire, les Lubicons prétendent vivre sur des terres non cédées et exigent done une adhésion externe. Prétendant posséder des titres aboriginaux non éteints à l'égard d'une bande de terre spécifique, les Lubicons exigent une compensation qui n'aurait pas à être payée s'il s'agissait d'une adhésion interne.

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1. There is no mention of adhesions in Woodward, J., Native Law (Toronto: Carswell, 1989); Morse, B. W., ed., Aboriginal Peoples and the Law (Ottawa: Carleton University Press, 1985); Cumming, P. A. & Mickenberg, N. H., eds., Native Rights in Canada, 2nd ed. (Toronto: General Publishing, 1972). Hume, D., in “Life's Embarrassing Moments—Right Treaty, Wrong Adhesion: John Semmens and the Split Lake Indians,” (19831984) 17 Archivaria 261, shows insight into the nature of adhesions but does not develop the general significance of the topic.

2. A convenient synopsis is the chart Treaty Agreements between the Indian Peoples and the Sovereign in Right of Canada” published by DIAND, Treaties and Historical Research Centre, revised May 1979.

3. Treaty One, printed in Daugherty, W. E., Treaty Research Report: Treaty One and Treaty Two (Ottawa: Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, Treaties and Historical Research Centre, 1983) at 27.

4. Confirmed in conversation with Robert Surtees, an expert on Ontario treaties.

5. The enumeration is made from the Treaty Research Report series published by the Treaties and Historical Research Centre of Indian Affairs, the volumes of which contain the texts of treaties and adhesions as appendices. The information has been checked against Morris, A., The Treaties of Canada with the Indians (Toronto: Coles, 1979; reprint of 1880 ed.), and against Canada, Department of Indian Affairs, Indian Treaties and Surrenders (Toronto: Coles, 1971; 3 vols; reprint of vols 1 & 2 published by the Queen's Printer, 1891, and of vol. 3, published by the Queen's Printer, 1912).

6. Coates, K. S. & Morrison, W. R., Treaty Research Report: Treaty Five (1875–1908) (Ottawa: Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, Treaties and Historical Research Centre, 1986) at 79–80, 84.

7. Taylor, J. L., Treaty Research Report: Treaty Four (1874) (Ottawa: Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, Treaties and Historical Research Centre, 1985) at 19.

8. Gooderham, G. H., “The Gypsy Indians and the Last Treaty” (1986) 34 Alberta History 15. The adhesions to Treaty Six are printed in Taylor, J. L., Treaty Research Report: Treaty Six (Ottawa: Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, Treaties and Historical Research Centre, 1985) at 65.

9. Ibid., at 65.

10. Ibid. at 74.

11. Ibid. at 75.

12. The two adhesions are printed in Coates & Morrison, Treaty Research Report: Treaty Five, supra, note 6 at 86–89.

13. Ibid. at 54–55; Hume, supra, note 1 at 261–65.

14. Three recent histories of Treaty Eight are René Fumoleau, , As Long as This Land Shall Last: A History of Treaty 8 and Treaty 11 (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1975), c. 12; Daniel, R., “The Spirit and Terms of Treaty Eight” in Price, Richard, ed., The Spirit of the Alberta Indian Treaties (Montreal: Institute for Research on Public Policy, 1979) 47; Madill, D. F. K., Treaty Research Report: Treaty Eight (Ottawa: Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, Treaties and Historical Research Centre, 1986). On the Lubicon conflict, see Richardson, B., “The Lubicon of Northern Alberta” in Richardson, B., ed., Drumbeat: Anger and Renewal in Indian Country (Toronto: Summerhill Press for the Assembly of First Nations, 1989) 229; Goddard, J., “Forked Tongues,” (February 1988) Saturday Night 38; Goddard, J., “Last Stand of the Lubicon” (May/June 1985) 21 Equinox 67; Goddard, J., Last Stand of the Lubicon Cree (Vancouver: Douglas & McIntyre, 1991). This section reproduces some of Flanagan, T., “Some Factors Bearing on the Origins of the Lubicon Lake Dispute, 1899–1940” (1990) 2 Alberta 47.

15. A. E. Forget to Secretary, Department of Indian Affairs, 12 January 1898. National Archives of Canada (hereafter NAC), RG 10, vol. 3848, file 75,236-1.

16. A. E. Forget to Secretary, Department of Indian Affairs, 25 April 1898, ibid.

17. P. C. 1703, 27 June 1898, ibid.

18. Public Notice, June 1898, ibid.

19. Smith, J. G. E., “Western Woods Cree” (1981) 6 Subarctic at 259.

20. N.d., NAC, RG 10, vol. 3848, file 75,236-1.

21. P.C. 330, March 2, 1899. NAC, RG 10, file 75,236-1.

22. C. Sifton to Council, 29 April 1899, ibid.

23. Hall, D. J., “The Half-Breed Claims Commission” (1977) 2 Alberta History 1.

24. Flanagan, T., “The History of Metis Aboriginal Rights: Politics, Principle and Policy,” (1990) 5 Canadian Journal of Law and Society 71.

25. Madill, supra, note 14 at 34.

26. Mair, C., Through the Mackenzie Basin: A Narrative of the Athabasca and Peace River Treaty Expedition of 1899 (Toronto: William Briggs, 1908) at 5564; É, Grouard, Souvenirs de mes soixante ans d'apostolat dans l'Athabaska-Mackenzie (Winnipeg: La Liberté [1922] at 367. See also the Edmonton Bulletin, 6–10 July 1899. The material is conveniently summarized in Daniel, “The Spirit and Terms of Treaty Eight,” supra, note 14 at 71–85.

27. Treaty Number Eight, 21 June 1899. Reprinted in Madill, supra, note 14 at 127–35.

28. D. Laird, J. H. Ross, J. A. J. McKenna to C. Sifton, 22 September 1899. Report of Commissioners for Treaty No. 8. Reprinted in Madill, supra, note 14 at 121–25.

29. Dunvegan adhesion, 6 July 1899. Reprinted in Madill, ibid., 132.

30. The adhesions of 1899 are all reprinted in ibid., at 130–34.

31. Commissioners' report, 22 September 1899, in ibid., at 125.

32. J. A. Macrae to C. Sifton, 11 December 1900. Reprinted in ibid., at 136–37.

33. The adhesions are printed in ibid., at 138–40. I have corrected the arithmetic in the statistical summary of Macrae's report at 141.

34. J. A. Macrae to C. Sifton, 11 December 1900.

35. P.C. 460, 2 March 1900, NAC, RG 15, vol. 783, file 556, 321–2.

36. J. A. Macrae to C. Sifton, 19 January 1901, NAC, RG 15, vol. 782, file 555,680–1. Macrae claimed he took 381 applications, but J. A. J. McKenna counted 383 when he reviewed the evidence. J. A. J. McKenna to C. Sifton, 16 March 1901, NAC, RG 15, vol. 782, file 555,680-1.

37. J. A. J. McKenna, 16 March 1901.

38. H. A. Conroy to the Deputy Superintendent of Indian Affairs, 10 February 1909, NAC, RG 10, vol. 3999, file 206,070-31.

39. Memorandum of agreement, 14 December 1929, s. 10, enacted by the Alberta Natural Resources Act, S. C, 1930, c. 3.

40. N.-P. L'Heureux to Secretary, Indian Affairs Branch, 1 October 1940. This and following correspondence is found in Exhibit B attached to Affidavit 2 of Chief Bernard Ominayak, filed 23 September 1982, in Ominayak v. Norcen, contained in the papers of Judge N. D. McDermid, Glenbow-Alberta Institute, 6992, appeal book 3.

41. T. R. L. MacInness to N.-P. L'Heureux, 9 September 1941, ibid.

42. H. W. McGill to N. E. Tanner, 17 February 1942, ibid.

43. C. D. Brown to R. A. Hoey, 29 October 1946, ibid.

44. D. J. Allan to G. H. Gooderham, 15 March 1952, ibid.

45. Goddard, Last Stand of the Lubicon Cree, supra, note 14 at 21.

46. G. S. Lapp to G. H. Gooderham, 21 July 1950, Glenbow Alberta Institute, 1992, supra, note 40.

47. D. J. Allan to G. H. Goodherham, 15 March 1952, ibid.

48. Compare G. S. Lapp to G. H. Gooderham, 13 June 1952, ibid., with Lapp to Gooderham, 17 June 1953, ibid.

49. T. W. Dalkin to D. J. Allan, 11 February 1952, ibid.

50. T. W. Dalkin to G. H. Gooderham, 22 October 1953, ibid.

51. G. S. Lapp to E. A. Robertson, 5 May 1954, ibid.

52. Pratt, L., The Tar Sands: Syncrude and the Politics of Oil (Edmonton: Hurtig, 1976) at 18.

53. Daniel, R. C., Indian Rights and Hinterland Resources: The Case of Northern Alberta (MA Thesis in Sociology, University of Alberta, 1977) at 195203.

54. Paulette v. R., [1977] 2 S.C.R. 628 at 638, 645.

55. The Land Titles Amendment Act (Bill 29) S. A. 1977, c. 27, s. 10, amending s. 141 of the Land Titles Act. Royal Assent was granted on 18 May 1977.

56. Bogle, B., Alberta Hansard (17 March 1978) at 262.

57. Foster, J., Alberta Hansard, (6 April 1977) at 672–73.

58. Goddard, “Forked Tongues” supra, note 14 at 43.

59. MacGregor, R., Chief: The Fearless Vision of Billy Diamond (Markham, Ont.: Viking, 1989) at 257–58.

60. Diamond, B., “Aboriginal Rights: The James Bay Experience,” in Boldt, M. J. & Long, J. A., eds, The Quest for Justice: Aboriginal Peoples and Aboriginal Rights (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1985) 265.

61. Glenbow-Alberta Institute, N. D. McDermid Papers, 6992, appeal book 3, Section 22 of the appellants' factum.

62. Ominayak v. Norcen, (1984) 29 Alta. L. R. (2d) 152 at 157.

63. Ibid., 157–158.

64. Richardson, supra, note 14 at 246; [1985] 1 S. C. R. xi.

65. Windspeaker (3 June 1988) at 3.

66. Richardson, ibid., at 258.

67. Windspeaker (7 October 1988) at 1.

68. Richardson, supra, note 14 at 260; Windspeaker, 21 October 1988 at 1.

69. Windspeaker (26 October 1988); Richardson, ibid., at 261.

70. Calgary Herald, (7–8 February 1989) A5.

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