Anishinabe
History


Rocky Boy Tribe
of
Chippewa Indians of
Montana








Starblanket First Nation


Located near Balcarres, Saskatchewan, is the Ojibway Star Blanket First Nation. In history, it's a bit difficult to put the pieces together to correctly determine what actually occurred during 1874's treaty 4 negotiations. Evidently the ogima (chief) at the time of the 1874 treaty 4 negotiations, was one ogima Wah-pay Moos Stoo-sis. He did or, did not, sign the treaty known as treaty 4. However, one thing is very clear and that is the appointment of a new ogima after treaty 4 was signed or before treaty 4 was signed. That's the problem. That new ogima was Ah-cha-coo-sa-coot-ah-coo-pits. He may have been elected by Ojibway's. That occurred in 1874 or around the time of the signing of treaty 4. They originally lived in Alberta & Montana. During the 1877 Exodus, they fled to the Cypress Hills of Alberta and Saskatchewan. Canada forced them to relocate to the File Hills. There are a total of 13 Reserves which make up this First Nation. They cover a total area of 7,583 total hectares or 10,738 total acres. Total population is 268. Below is a map of this Reserve and google earth photos of File Hills Reserve. There is a photo of chief's Starblanket and Louis O'Soup also. Chief Starblanket is seated in front and first on your left, while chief Louis O'Soup stands behind him on his left. You must remember that the map is not only a map of the Starblanket Reserve but also a map of the Little Black Bear Reserve and the Okanese and Peepeekisis Reserves. All four Reserves are connected or the same Reserve.



This Reserve is known as the File Hills Reserve. It could be known as Okanese or Oganiiz Reserve. Ojibway leader chief Okaniiz, was appointed chief by HBC or Hudson Bay Company according to historians. If that's correct, he was not considered legitimate by real Ojibway leaders. Chief Yellowquill was possibly their leader. Chief Okanese (Michael Cardinal) was born around 1790 in the Bow River region of Alberta. Bow River is 62 miles or 99.8 kilometers north of Montana. He was supposedly mixed in race. However, no one knows for certain if whites had reached southern Alberta by 1790. They had reached northern Alberta by 1790. His sons became important Ojibway leaders. They include chief's Cowessess (Crooked Lakes Reserve), Keeseekoowenin, Louis O'Soup, Mekis, Red Pheasant, St. Paul (chief of the Shuswap of British Columbia) and Wuttunee. Chief Okanese migrated east to what is now Manitoba, from Alberta and Montana. They came up from Montana during the 1876-1877 Montana War and settled in the Cypress Hills. Canada wanted the land there because it was ideal farmland. They forced Montana Ojibway's to relocate east and north. Chief Big Bear led 1,000s to the Fort Pitt, Saskatchewan region, while either chief's Cowessess or his brother Louis O'Soup, led 1,000s east to Qu'Appelle Lakes Reserve, File Hills Reserve, Crooked Lakes Reserve and to Riding Mountain Reserve (aka Keeseekoowenin Reserve).



There are only two real communities at File Hills Reserve. One located at Peepeekisis and one at Okanese. Oganiiz is located near this Reserves center, while Peepeekisis is located in the extreme southern part of File Hills Reserve. Little Black Bear District has a population of 218. Okanese has a population of 277. Peepeekisis has a population of 627. Peepeekisis District has less lakes compared to those other districts. They, thus, have more space to expand their housing units to. File Hills Reserves has many lakes. Total on-Reserve population for File Hills Reserve is 1,390. File Hills Reserve covers an area of 134.2 sq. mi. or 347.706 sq. km.







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