Oji-Cree or Anishinini


If you ever decide to do extensive research on these people referred to as Oji-Cree, you will likely learn that they are considered to be Cree. A few years ago when i first got online, first impression i got of Oji-Cree People was they were of Cree origins, but after i have done far more research online about Oji-Cree People, i have learned that they are not Cree. Why are they not Cree? They speak a language that is considered to be a simple Anishinabe (Ojibwa) dialect. It is also known as Severn Ojibwa Dialect. What's this about Oji-Cree? They claim their language is Oji-Cree yet there is evidence that indicates another theory that is very disturbing. White Christian missionaries forced their converts to speak Cree at Island Lake. Written below is excerpt from 1930, about Island Lake Ojibwa's from northeastern Manitoba. Big Trout Lake is 200 miles east of Island Lake, Manitoba.



Linguistically, the Island Lake natives may be characterized by calling them Saulteaux or better perhaps, Saulteaux-Ojibwa, indicating more clearly by this hyphenated term the close relationship of their language to Ojibwa proper. Locally, they are said to speak a mixed dialect of Saulteaux and Cree. This mixture is reported to be especially typical of the Maria Portage groups, while the natives at Smooth Rock are reputed to speak a purer Saulteaux. It may be pointed out in this connection that Cree is utilized in the United Church services and at the Catholic mission, too, so that in recent years practically all of the lslandlakers have learned to understand Cree and many speak it. The assimilation of Cree would consequently appear to be partly the result of christianization and partly due to contact with the Norway House Cree since the canoe route referred to has been open. The linguistic base at Island Lake may very well be Saulteaux-Ojibwa with an overlay of Cree due to modern conditions. On the other hand, it is not impossible that a much older contact with Cree-speaking peoples has affected the language much more deeply than a superficial inspection would indicate, since the Saulteaux of this region may have been marginal to Cree bands for a considerable period, because to the south and east we find only Saulteaux spoken today.



What does that tell Oji-Cree People or the Anishinini? It tells them they are Saulteaux Ojibwa. They don't know their history. According to Edinburgh Encyclopedia (it's from 1832), Great Lakes Ojibwa's sent large numbers of their soldiers up north where Hudson Bay is located. They did so to fight invading Eskimos and their white allies. They eventually reached Beaufort Sea and there they are known as Chipewyan including Copper, Dogrib and Athabascans in general. South of Chipewyan territory, are woodland Crees who are also Ojibwa according to Edinburgh Encyclopedia. Crees lived north of Nelson River and Saskatchewan River, or those rivers were some kind of boundary. Both Chipewyans and Crees absorbed many Eskimos within their communities. As was Ojibwa customs, they mixed their culture and language with that of their Eskimo subjects. That is why that language discrepancy exists. Cree Language is in fact Oji-Cree. Edinburgh Encyclopedia also details Ojibwa eastern migrations. Ojibwa soldiers took control of land from Missouri River then to North America's Atlantic Coast.



According to 19th century Ojibwa historians, the Cree spoke a dialect of the Ojibway Language. However, in 1852 Peter Jacobs wrote an account of his travels to northern Manitoba or Norway House. Jacobs was Ojibway and spoke the Ojibway Language. He wrote the following: He performed the whole of the service (preaching) well, and read his sermon well; but i am not a competent judge of this mixed language of Ojibway - Cree and Swampy (Cree) or Oji-Cree. The Cree and Swampy are nearer kin to each other than either to the noble and majestic Ojibway; and that is the language i profess to understand. What caused this confusion in Language? In 1774, the whites and their Eskimo allies, launched an invasion into the interior of northern Manitoba and also east central Saskatchewan. Forts were established and many Eskimos were brought to those white forts to help the whites fight the Ojibwa's. Soldiers from the Ojibway Military, defeated many of the Eskimos and mixed their language and culture with that of the Eskimos. Their language is known as Cree. It should be known as Oji-Esk for Ojibway and Eskimo. Ojibway dominate spoken Cree. Same thing happened after the whites and their Eskimo allies invaded southern Manitoba during that War of 1812. That language that evolved in southern Manitoba is known as Michif.



So you now understand how this deliberate mistake was forced. You can't tell that to Anishinini People because they accept what white historians have written about their history. Today, the Oji-Cree or Saulteaux Ojibwa's, are still exploiting their land and they are very strongly a part of it. Below is a list of the Anishinini or Oji-Cree communities or First Nations. According to the 2015 census, the population of the Oji-Cree communities is 27,063. Their largest community is Garden Hill, which is located in Manitoba. Their largest community in Ontario is Sandy Lake. That does not include the Oji-Cree who live in white communities. Their communities are located around important waterways to them. It allows them to harvest fish and hunt for wild game that surrounds the many lakes their communities are surrounded by.





Oji-Cree Communities


Aroland Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Wawong Lake region of Ontario, Canada. They have year round road access.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Aroland is 406

Bearskin Lake Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Bearskin Lake region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Bearskin Lake is 470

Big Trout Lake Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Big Trout Lake region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the communities of Big Trout Lake is 1,091

Cat Lake Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, live around the Cat Lake region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Cat Lake is 575

Constance Lake Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, live around the Constance Lake region of Ontario, Canada. They have year round road access.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Constance Lake is 842

Deer Lake Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Deer Lake region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Deer Lake is 1,029

Eabametoong (pronounced as ay-ya-ba-met-ong) Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, They live around the Eabamet Lake region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Eabametoong is 1,478

Fort Severn Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, originally lived where Sachigo River merges with Severn River or over 80 miles inland from Hudson Bay. In 1973, they were forced to relocate to where they live now.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Fort Severn is 528

Garden Hill Ojibway:
This band of Ojibways, inhabit the Island Lake region of Manitoba, Canada. It is one of several Anishinini communities surround Island Lake.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the communities of Garden Hill is 3,858

Kasabonika Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Kasabonika Lake region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Kasabonika is 1,048

Keewaywin Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Keewaywin Indian settlement in Ontario, Canada. It is located a few miles east of the communities of Sandy Lake.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Keewaywin is 439

Kingfisher Lake Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Kingfisher Lake region of Ontario, Canada. It is located a few miles west of Wunnumin Lake.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Kingfisher is 523

Koocheching Ojibway (part of Sandy Lake):
This band of Ojibway, live just east of Sandy Lake about 1/2 a mile from Severn River in northwest Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population is included with Sandy Lakes cmmunities population of 1,557

Mcdowell Lake Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Mcdowell Lake Indian settlement in Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population is 2

Marten Falls Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, live along the Albany River region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Marten Falls is 346

Mishkeegogamang Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, live around the Lake St. Joseph region of Ontario, Canada. A little east of Lake St. Joseph. They have year round raod access.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Mishkeegogamang is 1,043

Muskrat Dam Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Muskrat Dam Lake regon of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Muskrat Dam is 211

Neskantaga Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway live around the Attawapiskat Lake region of northern Ontario.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Neskantaga is 318

New Slate Falls Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Slate Falls Indian settlement in Ontario, Canada. Their community is located near Konegon Lake, North Bamaji Lake, and Wesleyan Lake.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Slate Falls is 25

North Caribou Lake Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Weagamow Lake region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of North Caribou Lake is 806

North Spirit Lake Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, live adjacent to North Spirit Lakes southwest shores in northwest Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2016 Population of the community of North Spirit Lake is 439

Red Sucker Lake Ojibway:
These Ojibways live around the Red Sucker Lake region of northern Manitoba.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Red Sucker Lake is 934

Sachigo Lake Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Sachigo Lake region of Ontario, Canada. Their main community is located north of Sachigo Lake.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population is 493

St. Theresa Point Ojibway:
These Ojibways, inhabit the Island Lake region of Manitoba, Canada. It is one of several Anishinini communities surround Island Lake.
Language is Ojibway
The Population is 3,851

Sandy Lake Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Sandy Lake region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the Sandy Lake cmmunities is 1,557

Saugeen Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, live around the Savant Lake region of Ontario, Canada. They have year round road access.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Saugeen is 105

Summer Beaver (Nibinamik) Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway live around the Nibinamik Lake region of Ontario. Ni-bin-a-mik means Summer Beaver in Ojibwa.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the Nibinamik communities is 361

Wapekeka Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Wapekeka region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the cmmunity of Wapekeka is 426

Wasagamak Ojibway:
This band of Ojibways, inhabit the Island Lake region of Manitoba, Canada. It is one of several Anishinini communities surround Island Lake.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the Wasagamack communities is 1,865

Wawakapewin Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Long Dog Lake Indian settlement in Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the Wawakapewin community is 41

Wunnumin Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, inhabit the Wunnumin regon of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Wunnumin is 544

Webequie Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, live around the Kanuchuan Lake region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Webequie is 767

Weenusk Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, live along the Winisk River region of Ontario, Canada.
Language is Ojibway
The 2015 Population of the community of Weenusk is 281

Whitesand (originally known as Whitewater) Ojibway:
This band of Ojibway, live 13 miles northwest of Lake Nipigon.
Language is Ojibway
The 2016 Population of the community of Whitesand is 361



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