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In 1876, the Canadian Government signed Treaty 6 with a number of First Nations in what is now Alberta and Saskatchewan. One of the signatory nations was what is now known as the Young Chippewayan band. As part of the Treaty, the Young Chippewayans were granted 30 square miles in the vicinity of what is now Laird, Saskatchewan.

However, upheaval at the time saw the Young Chippewayans travelling to the Cypress Hills in search of buffalo, and then being afraid to return to their land. (Details here: https://mcccanada.ca/sites/mcccanada.ca/files/media/common/documents/youngchippewayanindianreserve.pdf )

This led to the Canadian government seizing the land and giving it to Russian Mennonite settlers in 1897. Later, ethnic German Lutherans from the United States also settled in the area.


This short film tells part of the story of how the Young Chippewayans and the Mennonites and Lutherans of Laird came together to seek justice for the Young Chippewayans from the Canadian government.

The one thing I find disappointing is that they don’t really go into the details as to how the three groups came together. There must have been discussions prior to the 2006 memorandum of understanding, and this feels like a gap to me.

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