Learning about my ancestry

November 11th, 2013, 5pm

It was -12°C with few clouds. The breeze was gentle.

Canada is in conflict and Louis Riel, leader of the Metis, is the reason. Riel has been found guilty of high treason. He is awaiting execution in a small wooden prison, heavily barred, just outside of Regina. He is being heavily guarded by Canadian Mounties and is not allowed to be seen or interviewed, aside from W.W. Harkins from the Montreal Star. Everything is being kept in tight security. It was pure luck that they managed to apprehend Riel at Batoche after a 4 day battle, when he surrendered. Riel had been out of Canada for more than four years, living in Montana, enjoying the mountains and the valleys of the vast land. Riel had only returned to the country to plead the Metis case to the federal government. Gabriel Dumont, Riel’s Military commander during the Northwest rebellion in 1885 was a major player in convincing Riel to return. Dumont had been an enthusiastic supporter of Riel from the beginning; he showed courage and skill in battle and tried his best to politic on behalf of the Metis to the federal government. Dumont showed great concern for the homes and lands of the Metis people which had been destroyed or damaged in the rebellion. He also continued on the quest to help get land scrip for the Metis; however Dumont did not have the finesse that Riel had. His language was often rude and he spoke very frankly. Dumont headed to Montana where he begged his friend to return and help to politic for the people. Everything went sour and now after the battle of Batoche, Riel has been captured and will be executed. Riel is calm about this; he still has his smile and charm. Riel is a good looking man, who is strong and believes in his people. He understands there is nothing that can save him now and just wants to ensure his message to his people is heard. When he speaks, you can hear the passion in his voice about what he is saying. He will be truly a great loss for this country!

I am finding this book a very interesting read and learning a lot about my ancestry. There is even a photo in the book of Baptiste Tourond (my maiden name), as well as several accounts of Andre and Napolean Nault. Andre was my great, great grandfather and Napolean was his father. Very cool!

David Wade said thanks.

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Kelly Barr

I have been married for 15 years and am the mother of 2 small children. I grew up in BC but now live in Northern Manitoba to fight the winters and the mosquitoes!

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