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People-Louis_Riel_Statue



Riel's manifesto
Riel has drawn up an elaborate manifesto. He begins by given [sic] an account of the deputations sent by half breeds either to Ottawa or to the authorities at Winnipeg since 1871, praying for the redress of the grievances which the half breed commission has now come to adjust. A long account is given of the proceedings of the deputation, headed by Father Leduc, which went to Ottawa in 1883 to put before the government complaints of the half breeds of St. Albert (eight miles from Edmonton) and of those of the Saskatchewan country at large. He says the appointment of the half breed commission is a confession is a confession on the part of the government that the half breeds had not received justice, and goes on to say that the ministers had repeatedly promised to enquire into the subject in answer to letters sent. Strong representations had also been made by Archbishop Tache by Mr. royal M.P. and by lower Canadian members, the answer always being that, "Something would be done". This went on from 1872 until 1876, when Governor Laird took up the matter and advocated a general settlement. His advice was not heeded. In 1876, 1877, and 1878 urgent representations were made to government officials and the invariable reply was that the governmen was considering the matter. In 1879, when Sir John Macdonald cam into power, these representations were renewed. Riel, says Mr. Dewdney must have misled the government, in which case he is responsible for all this trouble. He says the Dominion surveyors had no sooner ceased to harass the half breed settlers by threatening to deprive them of a portion of their farms, than the timber inspectors began to presecute them, fining the settlers for raking timber off land which they had been cultivating for years, though the patents for some reason or other been witheld. Riel appeals to the white settlers to testify to the mismanagement of Saskatchewan and Alberta ever since 1879, and also to the tyranny and dishonesty of most of the officials placed over the people, and says that his people never intended to shed a drop of blood and did not fire on Crozier until that officer fired first; that war is being forced upon them and that they are being hunted to death, although the parliament of Ottawa knows that they have been wronged. In conclusion he says;= As death by the public executioner or in battle must be theirs, they must die fighting. This document, together with the bill of rights of September, and a new bill of rights, will be sent to General Middleton. Gabriel Dumon whose brother was killed at Duck Lake is said to be the most active man in the rebel ranks, and is comelling many of his followers by threat of death to stand out.
From the Front. Riel's Manifesto on half breed grievances. Mr. Dewdney blamed. Crozer charged with firing first. Middleton's forces concentrating. The 63th advance to Edmonton. The reported Frog Lake massacre discredited.
(Primary source documents / Timeline)



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