Peskewiku’s July – Animal Fur Thickens Time
1 – 1984 – Noel Doucette resigns as president of the Union of Nova Scotia Indians.
1995 – Grand Chief Ben Sylliboy officially opens the 400 metre Mi’kmaq Trail at Louisbourg.
2 – 1762 – In his letter of July 2 Jonathan Belcher writes to the Lords of Trade, “If the Proclamation had been issued at large, the Indians might have been incited to have made extravagant and unwarrantable demands to the disquiet and perplexity of the New Settlements in the Province.”
1981 – Mi’kmaw linguist Bernie Francis officially resigns from his position with MACS to work with other communities in developing language programs and to promote spoken and written Mi’kmaw.
1997 – Thirteen Mi’kmaw chiefs of Nova Scotia sign an MOU with the federal and provincial governments to resolve issues among the three governments.
3 – 1981 – Sister Dorothy Moore celebrates the twenty-fifth anniversary of her Religious Profession at a special mass of thanksgiving at Holy Family Church in Eskasoni, where Sister Dorothy renews her vows.
1991 – The Mi’kmaw community of Millbrook and Confederacy of Mainland Mi’kmaq honour five Elders: Bill Paul, Martha Julian, Rachael Marshall, Mary Ann Brooks, and Sandy Julian.
2013 – Chief Andrea Paul of Pictou Landing is appointed to the Human Rights Commission.
4 – 1975 – An important archaeological site is found on Ingonish Island, off Cape Breton Island, by a team of archaeologists. A large site, it was occupied by Paleo- and Early Archaic- peoples. Artifacts found there date back 7000-9000 years. The site is named Geganisg, a Mi’kmaw word meaning “remarkable place.”
5 – 1982 – Sister Veronica Matthews celebrates twenty-five years with the Sisters of St. Martha. She is a daughter of Michael and Agnes Matthews of Eskasoni.
1985 – The Union of Nova Scotia Indians signs an agreement with the province of Nova Scotia giving the former group control of their own family and children’s services.
1990 – A 40-page report handed down by Mr. Justice Gregory Evans recommends Donald Marshall Jr. be awarded a lump sum payment of $199,872 and $1,875. per month for life indexed at 3% per year, tax free, and guaranteed for 30 years.
2008 – Grand Chief Ben Sylliboy, Newfoundland Premier Danny Williams, and Chief Mise’l Joe attend a powwow at Miawpukek to honour 19th century Mi’kmaw explorer Sylvester Joe. The Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada unveils a commemorative plaque and a special site is designated for eagle burials. Sylvester Joe is recognized for his contribution to exploration in Newfoundland.
6 – 1981 – Eskasoni Building Supplies Buckeyes combat 100 degree Farenheit temperatures to take the title in the Third Annual Jack Wysote Fastball Tournament held in Restigouche. They defeat the Restigouche Warriors but Warrior team member Billy Gray gets the MVP award.
7 – 1998 – The crew of Spirit Wind leaves Conne River – Miawpukek – Newfoundland, to paddle to Chapel Island – Potlotek – Cape Breton for the annual Mission. A chronicle of the journey is later released as a film made by Mi’kmaw film maker Catherine Martin.
8 – 1880 – Joseph Snake dies in Prince Edward Island. In 1859 he had been appointed head chief of the Mi’kmaq in PEI by the Queen’s Commission. He was born in 1786 near Murray Harbour.
2013 – Councillor John Frank Toney of Eskasoni announces his intention to run as the NDP candidate for Victoria-The Lakes in the upcoming provincial election. Present for the announcement held in the Sarah Denny Cultural Centre is Premier Darrell Dexter of Nova Scotia.
9 – 1993 – John Joe Sark, representing the Mi’kmaq Grand Council, attends a meeting of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights – Sub-Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities, Working Group on Indigenous Populations. Several interventions on behalf of the Grand Council are made.
2011 – Eskasoni community member Gerard “G” Francis wins a gold medal in the Grapplers Quest Competition in mixed martial arts in Las Vegas.
10 – 1988 – Powwow `88 attracts over 5,000 visitors to Seaview Park in Halifax over a 4-day period, closing on July 10th.
2011 – Captain and crew of the Eskasoni community fishing vessel Bessie aqq Wilfred are safe back on land after the vessel sank with its cargo of 30,000 pounds of snow crab. The captain, Shaun Stevens, and crew members Francis “Gubble” Stevens, Maynard P. Young Sr., Jonathan Johnson, George Denny, and Charles “Chuck” Francis all agree their training saved them during the emergency.
11 – 1981 – The Grand Council meets and decides to hold the St. Anne Mission from July 31-August 3 to avoid scheduling conflicts among Mi’kmaw communities and to allow Elders who receive pensions the chance to get their OAS entitlements.
12 – 2012 – Indian Brook residents participate in a “Buzz the Fuzz” event in support of cancer research. The Mi’kmaq Maliseet Nations News features pictures of Elle Michael, Lathias Howe, Lesley Knockwood, Henry Sack, Thomas Howe Jr., Kristin Sack, and Jenny Howe having their heads shaved, while Jacklyn Paul gets “buzzed” by her own mother, Marcella Hillier!
2013 – A monument to residential school survivors is unveiled in a ceremony in Eskasoni. Engraved on the monument are the words, “Let us ensure this history does not repeat itself and that the voices of the survivors across Canada will be heard. Let this monument be a reminder of the legacy of abuse.”
13 – 1971 – Charles Labrador is elected as the first chief after Acadia is constituted a band on June 8, 1965.
2019 – Jaime Battiste, son of noted Mi’kmaw scholar Marie Battiste and Chickasaw legal scholar James Sakej Henderson, wins the nomination to represent the Liberal Party in the riding of Sydney-Victoria, Cape Breton, in the upcoming 2019 Canadian federal election. Battiste garnered more votes than the other three contenders for the nomination.
14 – 2017 – Peter Julian of Sipekne’katik is inducted into the East Hants Sports Hall of Fame. He had developed the Nova Scotia Indian Sports Program in the 1970s and is also credited with starting the annual Maritime Native Fast Ball tournament.
15 – 1976 – The president of the Union of New Brunswick Indians presents a petition to Elizabeth II regarding “illegal abrogation of traditional lands and rights of the Mi’kmaq and Maliseet people of New Brunswick” urging the Queen to “redress the injuries perpetrated on the Mi’kmaq and Maliseet Indian people.”
1990 – Half a dozen Mi’kmaq from Whycocomagh go on a hunger strike in support of Mohawk protests at the Oka reserve in Quebec.
16 – 1986 – The waltes tournament is the highlight of the Nova Scotia Indian Summer Games at the Cambridge reserve in Annapolis Valley.
In July of 1993 the Mi’kmaq Maliseet Nations News reports an office building recently built on Gottingen Street in Halifax will not be named Cornwallis Court as originally planned. Due to the efforts of Daniel N. Paul the “Cornwallis Court” sign is removed and with it any homage to the late Lord Edward Cornwallis.
17 – 1776 – Mi’kmaq and the U.S. government sign friendship and alliance agreement known as “Watertown Treaty.”
18 – 1982 – The July issue of the Micmac News reports that contestants in a pie eating contest held in Membertou threw the remainders of their pies at the judges of the event, Eleanor Ginnish and John Edward Kabatay, after they named Tina Paul the winner in the 12-14 year age category.
1991 – The book Paqtatek – Policy and Consciousness in Mi’kmaq Life is launched at Pages Bookstore, Charlotte Street, Sydney. Edited by Stephanie Inglis, Joy Manette, and Stacey Sulewski, its contributors include Eleanor Johnson, Lottie Marshall, Joe B. Marshall, Douglas Brown, Trevor Bernard, P. J. Prosper, and Murdena Marshall.
19 – 1998 – At the third annual Watertown Treaty Day Parade a special recitation is made of the poem “Sma’knis” by Mi’kmaw Will Basque, who is credited with discovery of the Watertown Treaty in the 1970s. Basque was also a moving force behind re-enactment of the Watertown Treaty. He died earlier in 1998 from a heart attack.
2007 – The Bear River Pride Group host a one-day youth gathering and information session.
20 – The July 1990 issue of the Micmac News features a story on “Tisha,” a 13-month-old timber wolf, the animal companion of Eugene Denny of Eskasoni.
21 – 1974 – Clearing begins on land near Truro intended for the Abenaki Motel, the first wholly Mi’kmaw-owned (Millbrook community members) motel in the Maritimes.
22 – 2016 – The Si Denny Family celebrates their fourth annual gathering at the Eskasoni powwow.
23 – 1978 – The book Poems of Rita Joe is published on this date by Abenaki Press.
24 – 1997 – The 100th anniversary of Merrigomish Island Mission is held from July 24-26. Many residents of the Pictou Landing community are descendants of the original Mi’kmaw inhabitants of Indian Island.
2014 – Chief Rod Googoo of Waycobah says six Mi’kmaq are now working at Port Hawkesbury Paper. He credits a partnership between Port Hawkesbury Paper, Waycobah, KMKNO, and the Mi’kmaw Economic Benefits Office with creation of the positions.
25 – 1984 – For the first time in 65 years more than one hundred Indigenous participants walk to the site of the old Fort Folly reserve in New Brunswick to mark St. Anne’s Day. Fort Folly was finally deserted in the 1930s. According to legend, gold coins found on the shores of the Petitcodiac near Fort Folly during low tide were thought to be the last remnants of pirate treasure buried in the area.
26 – 1750 – Pierre Maillard makes his headquarters at Chapel Island, the site of his first sermon in 1742.
1964 – Donald Marshall Sr. is elected Grand Chief following the death of former Grand Chief Gabriel Sylliboy who had passed away the previous May.
1992 – Chapel Island Mission celebrates its 250th anniversary and new Grand Chief Ben Sylliboy is sworn in.
1997 – John Martin is elected chief of Gesgapegiag, defeating 19 other candidates. The community holds its first public swearing-in ceremony.
2018 – A ten member committee is set up in Halifax to decide how best to mark the city’s founding by controversial figure Edward Cornwallis in the 18th century. The committee includes among its numbers five Mi’kmaw members: Daniel N. Paul, Bernie Francis, Pam Glode-Desrochers, Jaime Battiste, and co-chair Chief Roderick Googoo.
27 – 1989 – For the first time a Catholic bishop, Colin Campbell, leads the Mission at Chapel Island.
28 – 1987 – Darrell Googoo of Indian Brook wins the five mile race with a time of 28 minutes, 29 seconds in the 10th Annual Indian Summer Games held at Chapel Island. Stephen Marshall comes in second with a time of 29 minutes, 32 seconds but later places first in the 10-mile race coming in at 62 minutes, 29 seconds.
2008 – The federal government announces a multi-year, multi-million dollar training program for communities called “Unama’ki Partnership for Prosperity,” part of the ASEP or Aboriginal Skills Employment Partnership. It is expected to provide up to 150 full-time positions in construction for Mi’kmaw people.
29 – 1979 – Bob Rupert reports that Vivian (Denny) Basque’s claim that it never rains in Chapel Island during the St. Anne’s Procession on Sunday is true!
30 – The 1991 July issue of the Micmac News features a story on Bernd Christmas, son of Elisabeth and Stephen Christmas, who is the first Mi’kmaw graduate of Toronto’s Osgoode Hall Law School in June of that year.
31- 1986 – Funeral services are held for former chief of Restigouche Alphonse Metallic, aged 58. He rose to national attention in 1981 when he refused to accept provincial jurisdiction over fishing rights. A published linguist with two Mi’kmaw dictionaries to his credit, Metallic was also a member of the National Council of Elders, Mi’kmaq Grand Council, Assembly of First Nations, Congress of Quebec Indians, Micmac Association of Cultural Studies, and the Membertou Signtasimgeoeim Advisory Board.
Return to Book of Days for the Mi’kmaw Year