Madawaska Maliseet First Nation
Madawaska Maliseet First Nation or St. Basile 10 band is one of six Wolastoqiyik or Maliseet Nations on the Saint John River in Canada. The Madawaska Maliseet First Nation is located in Northern New Brunswick, a few kilometres from Edmundston, and has a band membership of 350 people. About 114 members of the MMFN lived on the St. Basile no. 10 reserve. This reserve is located 1.6 km east of Edmundston in the north-western region of New Brunswick. They are part of the Saint John River Valley Tribal Council. Family names include Bernard, Cimon, Francis and Wallace.
Madawaska Maliseet First Nation
Première Nation Malécite du Madawaska
|Electoral Districts |
|• Chief||Chief Joanna Bernard|
|• Provincial Representatives||Jean-Claude D'Amours|
|• MP||René Arseneault|
|Time zone||UTC-4 (Atlantic (AST))|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-3 (ADT)|
|Website||Madawaska Maliseet First Nation website|
|Postal code E7C 1W9|
The Maliseet also Malecite, Malécites or Étchemins, their name for themselves, or autonym is Wolastoqiyik. Wolastoq means "Beautiful River" referring to the Saint John River. Wolastoqiyik means "People of the Beautiful River," in Maliseet.(2007, LeSourd & 17) Their traditional land extended along the Wolastoq/Saint John River in New Brunswick and Maine, and had once extended as far as the St Lawrence. They were Algonkian (Algonquian) speakers. Their lands and resources were bounded on the east by traditional lands of the Mi'kmaq and on the west by Passamaquoddy (or Peskotomuhkati) and Penobscot nations. At the time of European encounter, the Maliseet (Wolastoqiyik) were living in walled villages and practicing horticulture (corn, beans, squash and tobacco) In addition to growing crops they subsisted from fishing, hunting and gathering fruits, berries, nuts and natural produce.
Since time immemorial, the site of the MMFN reserve was an important camping and meeting place of the Maliseet people during seasonal migrations. By the mid 1700s one of the largest Maliseet villages had been established at Madawaska, declining at the turn of the 19th century. A large settler community had formed at Madawaska by the early 1800s which began with the relocation of Acadians from the lower Saint John River in 1785. The French named the area Petit-Sault (Little Falls) in reference to the waterfalls located where the Madawaska River merges into the Saint John River.
In the late 1880s Canadian Pacific Railway, expropriated three parcels of reserve land, totaling almost 13 acres that cut through the MMFN, for the construction of a section of a railway running from Woodstock to Edmundston. (AANDC 2008)
After the abandonment of this section of land for railway purposes around 1971, CP rail entered into an agreement with the Fraser Papers Inc. (now Twin Rivers) pulp mill, the largest pulp mill in the area, to run an above ground pipeline from their mill to a tailings pond on the CP easement.(AANDC 2008).
When it was abandoned the MMFN made a claim to get their land back. The claim lands are part of the St. Basile no. 10 reserve, where approximately 50 percent of the 228 members of the Madawaska Maliseet First Nation are living. This reserve is located 1.6 km east of Edmundston in the north-western region of New Brunswick. Non-Natives, whose land had also been expropriated for the railway, had their land returned to them.
"The Madawaska Maliseet First Nation alleged that the Government of Canada failed to protect and preserve its interest in the reserve when Canadian Pacific Railway ceased to use the land for railway purposes."(AANDC 2008).
The mill is paired with a Fraser paper mill directly across the Saint John River in Madawaska, Maine, through which liquified pulp slurry is piped - the only such installation anywhere along the Canada–United States border.
Joanna Bernard, Chief of the Madawaska Maliseet First Nation, successfully negotiated a specific land claim regarding the Canadian Pacific Right of Way which included $5.7 million in compensation and the re-instatement of the reserve land in question.(AANDC 2008). "This settlement relates to the use of three parcels of reserve land, totaling almost 13 acres, used by Canadian Pacific Railway for the construction of a section of a railway running from Woodstock to Edmundston in the late 1800s. After the abandonment of this section of land for railway purposes around 1971, the land was then used by Fraser Papers Inc. for a pipeline. The Madawaska Maliseet First Nation alleged that the Government of Canada failed to protect and preserve its interest in the reserve when Canadian Pacific Railway ceased to use the land for railway purposes."(AANDC 2008).
By 2012 Madawaska Maliseet First Nation also "negotiated an agreement with Twin Rivers, the new owners of Fraser Papers, allowing the company to continue to operate the pipeline on the reserve."(AANDC 2012).
"We've signed a permit and allowed the pipeline to continue to exist …it's now underground…it's no longer above ground…so the relationship continues and we try and make it a continuing positive relationship." "The Trans Canada Highway divides our First Nation and because we have the ramps now, now we are actually able to develop the other side of the highway for commercial leasing and our very first anchor tenant will be…a Shell truck stop."(AANDC 2012).
Premier David Alward announced on New Brunswick Day, 2013, that Chief Joanna Bernard was one of ten people inducted into the Order of New Brunswick. Chief Bernard was recognised "for her tireless efforts to ensure the well-being and economic prosperity of her community as well as of all First Nations communities in the province."
- Madawaska Maliseet First Nation website
- Maliseet language and culture links
- Mi'kmaq-Maliseet Institute - University of New Brunswick
- Passamaquoddy-Maliseet Language Portal
Herbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). . Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company.
- "Biograohy: Chief Joanna Bernard" (PDF). Madawaska Maliseet First Nation.
- AANDC (9 July 2012). "Moving Toward Economic Development: The Story of Madawaska Maliseet". Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC).
- LeSourd, Philip (2007). Tales from Maliseet Country: the Maliseet texts of Karl V. Teeter. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press.p. 17, fnote 4
- "Language Madawaska Maliseet First Nation". Madawaska Maliseet First Nation.
- "History Madawaska Maliseet First Nation". Madawaska Maliseet First Nation.
- AANDC (23 April 2008). "Government of Canada resolves longstanding claim with Madawaska Maliseet First Nation". Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC). Archived from the original on 2013-04-16. Retrieved 2013-08-06.
- "Activists and doctor among new Order of N.B. members". CBC News. 5 August 2013. Retrieved 5 August 2013.