Treaty Day

Celebrating the  Anniversary of our 1752 Treaty of Friendship and Peace

Treaty Day, held annually on October 1st, marks the beginning of Mi'kmaq History Month in Nova Scotia as proclaimed in 1993 by then Premier John Savage and Mi’kmaq Grand Chief Ben Sylliboy. The purpose of Treaty Day is to promote public awareness about the Mi’kmaw culture and heritage for all citizens of Nova Scotia.

Background

In 1985, the Supreme Court of Canada confirmed the validity of the Treaty of 1752 - signed between "Jean Baptiste Cope, Chief Sachem of the Tribe of Mick Mack Indians, Inhabiting the Eastern Coast of Said Province," and Peregrine Thomas Hopson, Governor of the Province of Nova Scotia - in its ruling of the court case, James Matthew Simon v. the Queen. This ruling not only validated our Aboriginal Treaty rights but also confirmed the unique relationship which exists between the Mi'kmaq and the Crown, an agreement which is further maintained within the Covenant Chain, a series of interconnected treaties of mutual consent.

In 1986, Grand Chief of the Mi'kmaq Nation, Donald Marshall Sr., invited all Mi'kmaw to "observe October 1, 1986 and every year thereafter as Treaty Day to commemorate the unique and special relationship that exists between the Mi'kmaq and her Majesty." Since then, the Union of Nova Scotia Indians, with the involvement of other reputable Mi'kmaq organizations and associations, has spearheaded the organizing of activities for the celebration of October 1st - Treaty Day.

Treaty Day festivities must first and foremost reflect the beliefs of the Mi'kmaq people with respect to the obligations of our Treaty Rights - an aspiration only possible through the careful planning of various events and activities. Throughout the festivities, the Nova Scotia population must become more aware of the Mi'kmaq Nation and our history, which will only enrich their own cultural and historical knowledge of the Mi'kmaq, but will also enable the Mi'kmaq Nation to be recognized in a manner of which they are deserving.

For more information, please contact:
Deborah Ginnish
Treaty Day Coordinator
Tel: (902) 539-4107
Email: deborah@mikmaq-assoc.ca

Providing a unified political voice for the Mi'kmaq people of the province of Nova Scotia