Treaty Terms

Articles of the Treaty

Made and concluded at Beren’s River the 20th day of September, and at Norway House the 24th day of September, in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and seventy-five, between “Her Most Gracious Majesty the Queen” of Great Britain and Ireland, by Her Commissioners the Honourable Alexander Morris, Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of Manitoba and the NorthWest Territories, and the Honourable James McKay, of the one part, and the Saulteaux and Swampy Cree tribes of Indians, inhabitants of the country within the limits hereinafter defined and described, by their Chiefs, chosen and named as hereinafter mentioned, of the other part….

Whereas, the Indians inhabiting the said country have pursuant to an appointment made by the said Commissioners, been convened at meetings at Beren’s River and Norway House to deliberate upon certain matters of interest to Her Most Gracious Majesty of the one part, and the said Indians of the other.

AND WHEREAS the said Indians have been notified and informed by Her Majesty’s said Commissioners that it is the desire of Her Majesty to open up for settlement, immigration and such other purposes as to Her Majesty may seem meet, a tract of county bounded and described as hereinafter mentioned, and to obtain the consent thereto of Her Indian subjects inhabiting the said tract, and to make a treaty and arrange with them, so that there may be peace and good will between them and Her Majesty, and that they may know and be assured of what allowance they are to count upon and receive from Her Majesty’s bounty and benevolence. 

AND WHEREAS the Indians of said tract, duly convened in council as aforesaid, and being requested by Her Majesty’s said Commissioners to name certain Chiefs and Headmen who should be authorized on their behalf to conduct such negotiations and sign any treaty to be founded threon, and to become responsible to Her Majesty for the faithful performance by their respective bands of such obligations as shall be assumed by them the said Indians, have thereupon named the following persons for that purposes, that is to say:

For the Indians within the Beren’s River region and their several bands: Nah-wee-kee-sick-quah-yash, Chief; Kah-nah-wah-kee-wee-nin and Nah-kee-quan-nay-yash, Councillors, and Pee-wah-roo-wee-nin, of Poplar River; Councillors for the Indians within the Norway House region and their several bands:  David Rundle, Chief, James Cochrane, Harry Constatag and Charles Pisequinip, Councillors’ and Ta-pas-ta-num, or Donald William Sinclair Ross Chief, James Garriock  and Proud McKay, Councillors. 

AND THEREUPON, in open council, the different bands having presented their Chiefs to the said Commissioners as the Chiefs and Headmen for the purposes aforesaid of the respective Bands of Indians inhabiting the said district hereinafter described. 

AND WHEREAS the said Commissioners then and there received and acknowledged the persons so presented as Chiefs and Headmen, for the purposes aforesaid of the respective Bands of Indians inhabiting the said district hereinafter described. 

AND WHEREAS THE said Commissioners have proceeded to negotiate a treaty with the said Indians, and the same has been finally agreed upon and concluded as follows, that is to say:

The Salteaux and Swampy Cree Tribes of Indians and all other the Indians inhabiting the district hereinafter described and defined, do hereby cede, release, surrender and yield up to the Government of the Dominion of Canada. For Her Majesty the Queen and Her successors for ever, all their rights, titles and privileges whatsoever to the lands included within the following limits, that is to say:

Commencing at the north corner or junction of Treaties Nos. 1 and 3; then easterly along the boundary of Treaty No. 3 to the “Height of Land,” at the northeast corner of the said treaty limits,a point dividing the waters of the Albany and Winnipeg River; thence due north along the said “height of Land” to a point intersected by the 53 of north latitude; and thence north – westerly to “Favourable Lake”; thence following the east shore of said lake to its northern limit thence north-westerly to north end of Lake Winnipegoosis; then westerly to the “Height of Land” called “Robinson’s Portage”, thence north – westerly to the east end of Cross Lake”; thence north-westerly crossing “Foxes Lake” thence south westerly to the western point of “John Scott’s Lake” ; thence south-westerly to the north shore of “Beaver lake”, thence south-westerly to the west of “Cumberland Lake”; thence due south to the Saskatchewan River”; thence due south to the north-west corner of the northern limits of Treaty No. 4, including all territory within the said limits, and all islands on all lakes within the said limits, as above described; and it being also understood that in all cases where lakes from the treaty limits, ten miles from the shore of the lake should be included in the treaty. 

And also all their rights, titles and privileges whatsoever to all other lands wherever situated in the Northwest Territories or in any other Province or portion of Her Majesty’s dominions situated and being within the Dominion of Canada; 

The tract comprised within the lines above described, embracing an area of one hundred thousand square miles, be the same more or less;

To have and to hold the same to Her Majesty the Queen, and Her successors forever;


Her Majesty the Queen hereby agrees to lay aside reserves for farming lands, gue respect being had to lands at present cultivated by the said Indians, and other reserves for the benefit of the said Indians, to be administered and dealt with for them by Her Majesty’s Government of the Dominion of Canada, provided all such reserves shall not exceed in all one hundred and sixty acres for each family of five, or in that proportion for larger or smaller families…


…and with a view to show the satisfaction of Her Majesty with the behaviour and good conduct of Her Indians, Shere hereby, through Her Commissioners, makes them a present of five dollars for each man, woman and child belonging to the bands here represented, in extinguishment of all claims heretofore preferred. 


And further, Her Majesty agrees to maintain schools for instruction insuch reserves hereby made as to Her Government of the Dominion of Canada may seem advisable, whenever the Indians of the reserve shall desire it. 

Control of Liquor

Her Majesty further agrees with Her said Indians that within the boundary of Indian reserves, until otherwise determined by Her Government of the Dominion of Canada, no intoxicating liquor shall be allowed to be introduced or sold and all laws now in force, or hereafter to be enacted, to preserve Her Indian subjects inhabiting the reserves, or living elsewhere within Her North-west Territories, from the evil influence of the use of intoxicating liquors shall be strictly enforced. 

Hunting, Fishing, and Trapping

Her Majesty further agrees with Her said Indians, that they, the said Indians, shall have right to pursue their avocations of hunting and fishing throughout the tract surrendered as hereinbefore described, subject to such regulations as may from time to time be made by Her Government of Her Dominion of Canada, and saving and excepting such tracts as may from time to time be required or taken up for settlement, mining, lumbering or other purposes, by Her said Government of the Dominion of Canada, or by any of the subjects thereof duly authorized therefor by the said Government. 

Appropriation of Reserve Land for Public Purposes

It is further agreed between Her Majesty and Her said Indians that such sections of the reserves above indicated as may at any time be required for public works or buildings, or what nature soever, may be appropriated for that purpose by Her Majesty’s Government of the Dominion of Canada, due compensation being made for the value of any improvements thereon. 

Accurate Census to be Taken and Annuity of Five Dollars Per Person Paid

And further, that Her Majesty’s Commissioners shall, as soon as possible after the execution of this treaty, cause to be taken an accurate census of all the Indians inhabiting the tract above described, distributing them in families, and shall in every year ensuing the date hereof, at some period in each year to be duly notified to the Indians, and at a place of places to be appointed for that purpose within the territory ceded, pay to each Indian person the sum of five dollars per head yearly. 

Annual Sum of $500

It is further agreed between Her Majesty and the said Indians that the sum of five hundred dollars per annum shall be yearly and every year expended by Her Majesty in the purchase of ammunition, twine for nets, for the use of the said Indians, in manner following, that is to say:  in the reasonable discretion as regards the distribution thereof among the Indians inhabiting the several reserves or otherwise included therein of Her Majesty’s Indian Agent have the supervision of this Treaty. 

Agricultural Equipment and Supplies

It is further agreed between Her Majesty and the said Indians that the following articles shall be supplied to any band of the said Indians who are now cultivating the soil, or who shall hereafter commence to cultivate the land, that is to say:

  • Two hoes for every family actually cultivating;
  • Also one spade per family as aforesaid;
  • One plough for ever ten families as aforesaid;
  • Five harrows for every twenty families as aforesaid;
  • One scyther for every family as aforesaid, and also one axe;
  • And also one cros-cut say, one had-saw, one pit-saw, the necessary files, one grindstone, and one auger for each band;
  • And also for each Chief, for the use of his band, one chest of ordinary carpenter’s tools;
  • Also for each band enough of wheat, barley, potatoes and oats to plant the land actually broken up for cultivation by such band; also for each band one yoke of oxen, one bull and four cows all the aforesaid articles to be given once for all for the encouragement of the practice of agriculture among the Indians. 

Treaty Medals, Suit of Clothing, and Flag

It is further agreed between Her Majesty and the said Indians that each Chief duly recognized as such receive an annual salary of twenty-five dollars per annum, and each subordinate officer, not exceeding three for each band, shall receive fifteen dollars per annum; and each such Chief and subordinate officer as aforesaid shall also receive, once every three years, a suitable suit of clothing; and each Chief shall receive, in recognition of the closing the treaty, a suitable flag and medal.

Solemn Promise to be Good and Loyal Subjects of Her Majesty The Queen

And the undersigned Chiefs, on their own behalf and on behalf of all other Indians inhabiting the tract within ceded, do hereby solemnly promise and engage to strictly observe this treaty, and also to conduct and behave themselves as good and loyal subjects of Her Majesty the Queen.  They promise and engage that they will in all respects, obey and abide by the law, and they will maintain peace and good order between each other, and also between themselves and other Tribes of Indians, and between themselves and others of Her Majesty’s subjects, whether Indians or whites, now inhabiting or hereafter to inhabit any part of the said ceded tracts, or the property of their Majesty the Queen, or interfere with or trouble any person passing or traveling through the said tracts or any part thereof; and that they will aid and assist the officers of Her Majesty in bringing to justice and punishment any Indian offending against the stipulations of thai treaty, or infringing the laws in force in the country so ceded.