Manitoulin Treaty of 1862
|6 October 1862
|Manitoulin Island, Ontario
|McDougall Treaty No.94
|Land Transaction | Land Settlement | Compensation
|The Manitoulin Treaty of 1862, made with the Ottawa, Chippewa (Ojibwa) and other Indians occupying the Manitoulin Islands, was negotiated between William McDougall, Superintendent General of Indian Affairs, and the aboriginal leaders on Manitoulin Island in the Upper Great Lakes Region. Under an earlier treaty, the Manitoulin Treaty of 1836, the island had been set aside as an Indian reserve. However, by 1860, only 1,000 people of the expected 5,000 had settled on the island. Under pressure from white settlers and the local fisheries, the government pushed for a new treaty arguing that the land was needed for new settlements, and not enough Indians had moved to the island. The island was surveyed without the approval of the local tribes, and in October 1862 William Spragg, Deputy Superintendent of Indian Affairs, called for a general meeting at Manitowaming to reclaim the land. All the tribes eventually agreed to sign the treaty on the promise of sufficient reserves and annuities, except for the Wikwemikong who retained ownership of the eastern peninsula on the island.
|Under the Treaty of 1862, 600,000 acres of the original land was surrendered. Reserves were retained on a ration of 100 acres to each head of a family, 50 acres to each single adult, 100 acres to a family of orphans, and 50 acres to a single orphan. Consenting bands received an initial payment of $700 as an advance, and the income from the sale of properties was used to create an investment fund, which was to be distributed annually on a per capita basis, with the chiefs receiving a double share. The treaty also permitted the government to claim, from any reserve, any sites which might in its opinion, be better used for the public good in terms of building wharfs, harbours or mills, in which case compensation was given to those who were displaced for the improvements they had made on the land. A total of six reserve sites, in addition to the unceded Wikwemikong peninsula, were set apart. While Article six of the Treaty accorded to the Indians the same right to fish in the waters of the Island or adjacent shores as was granted to whites, no mention was made of hunting rights.