The Northwest Rebellion

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The Northwest Rebellion




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Slide1

The Northwest Rebellion

Social Studies 10

Slide2

Let’s Recall

What were some of the problems facing the Metis after 1870?

What were some of the problems facing the Plains Peoples in the same decade?

Slide3

The Metis lose patience

By the 1800s,

Metis

anger towards the Canadian government was continuously growing

They had already moved from

Manitoba

to the

Northwest Territories

because they couldn’t get the

land

they were promised

Now in their new home, they continued to ask the government for

title

to the land so they could

farm

Slide4

John A. Macdonald’s Vision

However, the

land surveyors

who had surveyed the region for the government in the 1870s had found that there was about 16 million acres in the

Northwest

that was suitable for

farming

Much of this land was owned by

land speculators

who would give a percentage of the

profit

they made from each sale to the

government

MacDonald calculated that the government could make 71 million

dollars

if most of that land was sold, more than the government had invested in the

Canadian Pacific Railroad

Some have even suggested that he deliberately

provoked

the Metis into rebellion so that

voters

would see the railroad as necessary to bring troops west

Slide5

A nourishment by Neglect

At the same time, the

Plains People

in the region were nearing

starvation

After signing the

treaties,

they were completely

dependent

on the government for

food

and other essentials because of the near

extinction

of the buffalo

To keep them in line, the government would threaten Natives who they thought would

rebel

by threatening to take away their

food

and other essentials

Slide6

Riel Returns to Canada

After the

Red River Rebellion,

Riel had fled to the

United States

He settled in

Montana,

where became a US citizen, worked as a

schoolteacher

and campaigned for the

Republican

Party

Despite having been

banned

from Canada for five years, he had been

elected

to parliament twice, though he was

barred

from taking his seat

But in 1884,

Gabriel Dumont

led a delegation of Metis to convince Riel to

return

to Canada to lead his people again

Slide7

A Canadian Civil War?

Riel initially wanted to lead his people

peacefully,

but to the government his presence meant that another

revolt

was happening

Conservative

Party supporters in the Northwest warned

MacDonald

that the Metis were planning to revolt alongside the

Plains People

Gabriel Dumont wrote in 1884 that “The Government should not be surprised if we side with the

Indians.

They are our

relatives,

and when they are starving, they come to us…We desire the Indians to be fed; because if they are not we ourselves will be kept in

poverty.

The

NWMP

made an investigation and reported that nearly 1000

Metis and Natives

were ready to start an

armed

rebellion

How would this have been different from the Red River Rebellion?

Slide8

War is On the Horizon

Riel initially tried to deal with the crisis

peacefully;

he wrote a new Metis Bill of Rights

that more closely resembled the American Declaration of

Independence

It took a more

critical

tone than the 1870 document, laying out the many

injustices

that both the Metis and the Plains People had suffered since then

But the government failed to respond, leading Riel and his supporters to form a new

Provisional Government

of Saskatchewan, believing that it would give him more

leverage

with the government

His first action was to send Gabriel Dumont and a large armed group to the NWMP base of

Fort Carlton

to demand it surrender peacefully

Leif Crozier,

the commander of the base refused to do so, and a

battle

soon broke out

The

Northwest Rebellion

had begun

Slide9

The Northwest Rebellion

Despite being

outnumbered

and having

inferior

weapons, the Metis

knew the land well and were determined to

assert

their rights and freedoms

In addition, members of the

Iron Confederacy,

an alliance of Cree and Assiniboine

,

joined the rebellion due to their mutual grievances with the government

The Metis and Iron Confederacy members achieved some victories at first, such as at

Fort Carlton

, Fort Pitt, and Cut Knife

.

Perhaps the most impressive victory was at the Battle of

Fish Creek,

where a group of just 60 Metis and Dakota natives led by

Gabriel Dumont

held off a force of 1600 Canadian troops, forcing them to retreat

But the Canadian troops simply had too many soldiers

and

bullets

for the Metis to win the war in the end

Slide10

The Battle of Batoche

The

decisive

battle of the war was the siege of

Batoche,

the

capital

of Riel’s provisional government

The Metis and their Native allies were

dug in

and determined to defend their rights

But the Canadian troops heavily outnumbered them, and had

artillery

guns to support them

The Metis managed to

repel

continuous Canadian attacks for 2 days

However, they soon ran out of

bullets

and were reduced to shooting

nails

and

rocks

from their guns

Canadian troops took this chance to

charge

the Metis positions, ending the battle

Gabriel Dumont escaped to the US, but Riel

surrendered

himself after a few days

Although the

Native

resistance continue for a few more months, the rebellion was essentially over

Slide11

Why did the Rebellion Fail?

While he was living in Montana, Riel began to develop an intense

religious

complex, believing that he was a

prophet

sent by God and began to

renounce

the Catholic Church

While Gabriel Dumont believed that they should have used

guerilla

tactics to fight the troops, Riel believed that God had ordered him to wait until Batoche was attacked and to defend it

If Riel had listened to Dumont and adopted hit and run style attacks, do you think the rebellion could have gone differently?

Slide12

Battle of Batoche Simulation

Next class, we will be doing simulations of the Battle of Batoche to explore how the Battle might have gone differently if you had been the Metis commanding officer

Slide13

The Setting

We will be using a grid map like this to simulate the battle on

Slide14

To prepare for the Battle

Read the “

Battle of Batoche”

simulation instruction sheet, along with the corresponding “strategy” readings

Make sure to do the pre-battle prep for next Tuesday’s class; the readings, reading the instructions, and the

pre-battle questions.


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