New Brunswick Archives publishes online guide to Indigenous culture, knowledge and traditions

The Provincial Archives of New Brunswick has produced a 36-page online guide, Integration of Indigenous Culture, Knowledge and Traditions, that provides four themes related to the history of Indigenous people in New Brunswick — reserve lands, traditional practices and ceremony, language and forms of communication, and the relationship between Indigenous people and Government.

Indigenous people traditionally known to reside in New Brunswick territory include Mi’kmaq, Wolastoqey (Maliseet), Passamaquoddy, and Penobscot.

The purpose of the guide is to provide information regarding Indigenous educational resources and material that can be found at the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick. A summary, questions and answers, and photographs are included and are intended to be used by educational professionals. The guide also compliments middle school Social Studies curricula in the province of New Brunswick.

In its description about the document, the archives says, “This is not an exhaustive guide, rather a place to begin thinking about how to approach such research.”

While there is no information specific to family history research, genealogists who have Indigenous ancestry from New Brunswick will find the guide a useful resource in their research toolbox. For example, the guide provides a list of the land names in traditional language and current land names (English) and which Indigenous nation populates each one.

New Brunswick is divided into fifteen counties.

Within the county boundaries are fifteen current Indigenous reserves and bands that are recognized by the Government of New Brunswick. These reserves are located in the following counties: Albert, Carleton, Charlotte, Gloucester (Pabineau Band), Kings, Kent (Buctouche Band, Indian Island Band, Elispogtog First Nation), Madawaska (Madawaska Maliseet First Nation), Northumberland (Eel Ground First Nation, Burnt Church Band, Metepenagiag Mi’kmaq Nation), Queens, Restigouche (Eel River Bar Band), St. John, Sunbury (Oromocto Band), Victoria (Tobique Band), Westmorland (Fort Folly Band), and York (Kingsclear First Nation, St. Mary’s Band).

The following is an excerpt from the guide.

Archive Research Advice for Theme One: Traditional reserve lands in New Brunswick

When researching at the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick it is important to understand different contextual language, language that is current to the time period and situation you are researching. If you are interested in learning more about Indigenous reserve lands, it is suggested you visit the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick and consider using terms such as Indian, First Nations, Aboriginal, Maliseet, Micmac, and Mi’kmaq in your searches. The use of terms such as these will provide results that are timely to certain situations, such as land surveying and the creation of reserves. These terms are widespread and will produce a more holistic search, even though they are not all proper terms we use today. (Source: Integration of Indigenous Culture, Knowledge and Traditions, page 14, Provincial Archives of New Brunswick.)

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Posted On: April 12, 2021 at 06:08AM