Many events have interacted to shape the Secwepemc Nation. The events that occurred at the same time were sometimes unrelated but all shaped the history of the Shuswap Nation and its dialogue with the Canadian and Provincial Government.
1760 The province of BC inhabits more than 30 tribal groups and many hundreds of communities.
1763 Britain's Royal Proclamation of 1763 reserves lands for the Indians until they are ceded or purchased by the Crown
1849 Vancouver Island is made a colony with the Hudson's Bay Company in charge of land and settlement. James Douglas, chief Hudson's Bay official in the colony, becomes Governor.
1850-54 Governor James Douglas enters into treaties with fourteen First Nation communities on Vancouver Island, creating what are now known as the Douglas Treaties.
1871 B.C. joins Canada and signs the Terms of Union. These state that the federal government will assume responsibility for First Nations and B.C. will retain authority over land and resources.
1895 Memorandum of Agreement, September 27th, 1895 Windermere, District of East Kootenay of BC. Chiefs of Columbia Lake, St. Mary’s, Chief of the Stonies in hunting territories.
1901 BC premier requests Terms of Union be renegotiated and that reserve sizes be re-assessed and National Census conducted.
1902 Dominion of Canada Schedule of all Indian Reserves published
1908 BC’s Executive Council decides it will not make any further reserve allotments
1908 Consolidated Land Act. s. 80 grants province reversionary interest
1909 Interior Tribes of BC formed
1910 BC refuses to submit question of aboriginal title in BC to British Privy Council
1910 Indian Reserve Commission is dismantled
1910 Indian Superintendent’s office in Victoria is closed and position abolished
1910 A statement of the Chiefs from Interior of BC was developed and signed by forty-eight chiefs and representatives. The statement was sent to Honorable Mr. Borden, Prime Minister of Canada and to the Members of the Dominion of the Dominion Government.
1910 In WW I, over 3,500 First Nations enlisted with the Canadian Expeditionary Force representing about 35 percent of the Native male population of military age. Indian War Veterans automatically become full Canadian citizens, losing their Indian Status and the right to live and be buried on reserves.
1911 Interior chiefs present memorial to Minister of Interior Frank Oliver
1911 Eight Chiefs, one delegate and James Teit go to Ottawa to negotiate Declarations.
1911 An Assembly of the Interior Tribes at Spences Bridge endorses the Nisga’a Petition and sends a delegation to Ottawa.
1912 Dr. J.A. J. McKenna memo to BC premier agreeing to set aside aboriginal title question.
1912 The Nlsks’psmux, Okanagan, Shuswap, Lillooet and Chilcotin Nations meet at Spences Bridge to make a joint petition to have their land grievances recognized. The petition is submitted to Ottawa to have the Canadian Government formally recognize the land ownership of the Interior Nations.
1913 Interior Tribes statement addressed to Prime Minister Robert Borden.
1914 Federal Privy Council Of Canada asking Indian Tribes to accept the findings of the Royal Commisssion
1914 Federal Privy Council Of Canada recommends Exchequer Court of Canada rule on aboriginal title
1914 BC Chiefs reject extinquishment clauses recommended by Dominion
1914 Interior Chiefs request their claims be put to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council
1915 Indian Rights Association statement on lands made to Minister of the Interior
1916 Indian Conference statement refusing to accept McKenna-McBride Commission findings
1916 McKenna-McBride Commission Final Report is published
1916 McKenna-McBride Commission resolution regarding water rights
1917 Federal government requires fishing permits; imposes further restrictions for Indians
1919 Allied Tribes formally reject McKenna-McBride findings
1919 BC Indians table 20 Conditions proposed as a basis of settlement
1919 Provincial Indian Affairs Settlement Act (SBC 1919-c.32)
1920 Federal legislation permits enfranchisement of Indians without their consent. Repealed.
1920 Duncan C. Scott makes it mandatory for Indian children (7-15 yrs) to attend school
1923 Provincial OIC 911 approves McKenna-McBride cut-offs of reserve land
1924 Federal PCOC 1265 approves McKenna-McBride reserves but not cut-offs in RB
1924 The elective system is introduced to replace the hereditary leadership system
1926 Chief William Pierrish of Neskonlith tables statement with King of England
1927 Special joint committee holds hearings and rejects claims of the BC Allied Tribes. Federal legislation which prohibits formation of Indian organizations that pursue land claims.
1928 Special Funding Vote, a $100,000 annual payment for BC Indians, commences
1931-2 Native Brotherhood of British Columbia formed
1950 Creation of an Indian Claims Commission discussed in House of Commons debates
1953 Prohibition against Indians pre-empting land repealed
1959 Joint Committee for the review of Indian Affairs policy considers Indian claims (to 1961)
1959 The Interior people form an Aboriginal Rights Committee which is led by Chief George Manuel of the Neskonlith Indian Band
1960 George Manuel presents brief from BC Chiefs to the Joint Committee on Indian Affairs
1961 Joint Committee recommends creation of an Indian Claims Commission in Canada, is drafted but never enacted
1962 North American Indian Brotherhood calls for legislated Indian Claims Commission
1963 Bill C-130, An Act to provide for the disposition of Indian Claims receives first reading
1965 Bill C-130 is amended and reintroduced as Bill C-123, but is not enacted
1966 Confederation of Native Indians of BC formed
1966 Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (DIAND) is formed
1968 Len Marchand becomes second Indian MP after Louis Riel
1969 Indian Claims Commission is established under Inquiries Act (Barber Commission)
1969 Federal government acknowledges McKenna-McBride cut-offs were unlawful
1969 Trudeau government’s White Paper asserts that aboriginal title does not exist
1969 Union of BC Indian Chiefs, (U BCIC) formed to contest White Paper position
1970 UBCIC issues A Declaration of Indian Rights: the BC Position Paper
1970 BC Land Act eliminates the pre-emption system in BC
1971 UBCIC submission to federal and provincial governments on Native Title to BC
1971 George Manuel meets with New Zealand and Australian indigenous leaders
1972 George Manual meets with international indigenous groups
1972 Schedule of Indian Reserves and Settlements issued by Indian and Northern Affairs Canada
1972 UBCIC submits BC claim based on native title to the federal government
1973 Federal Indian Affairs Minister Jean Cretien introduces federal land claims policy
1973 Aboriginal rights discussed for first time in the federal House of Commons
1973 Calder vs. A-G recognizes land rights based on aboriginal title (SCC)
1974 Indian and Northern Affairs Canada establishes Office of Native Claims to receive claims submissions
1974 BC Indian Cut-off Lands Settlement Act (federal)
1975 World Council of Indigenous Peoples founded by George Manuel at Port Alberni
1975 Central Interior Tribal Council formed by the Shuswap Tribal Council, Okanagan Tribal Coucil and Lillooet Tribal Council.
1976 Federal government adopts the comprehensive land claims policy
1977 George Manuel is nominated for Nobel Peace Prize (and again in 1978 and 1979)
1977 UBCIC proposes Aboriginal Rights Commission consider aboriginal title & rights issues
1978 Indian Nations Aboriginal Rights Position Paper formulated by UBCIC
1978 Indian Cut-off Bands Committee rejects federal-provincial cut-off lands offer
1979 Gerald LaForest reviews federal specific claims policy, recommends independent tribunal
1979 BC Chiefs & Elders make constitutional visit to England
1979 Aboriginal Council of BC founded
1979 Indian Cut-off Bands Committee rejects federal-provincial cut-off lands offer
1980 Canada’s First Nations petition Queen to recognize aboriginal rights in the Constitution
1980 UBCIC launches Constitution Express and helps secure s.35 provision in Constitution
1980 Central Interior Tribal Council formed into four tribal councils.
1981 Some McKenna-McBride cut-off lands claims are settled (into the mid-1980’s)
1981 Federal comprehensive claims policy is set out in "In All Fairness" document.
1981 Federal claims policy altered to entertain local government participation at negotiations.
1981 Shuswap Nation Tribal Council formed.
1982 Federal specific claims policy is set out in Outstanding Business: A Native Claims Policy
1982 Neskonlith submission to House of Commons Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs
1983 Declaration of Secwepemc Sovereignty, made by SNTC Chiefs January 17th, 1983.
1983 Secwepemc Cultural Education Society formed.
1984 Indian Cut-Off Lands Disputes Act (BC)
1984 Len Marchand appointed to the Senate
1986 Canada revises its comprehensive claims policy
1986 Confederated Traditional Okanagan-Shuswap Nations Declaration made on December 8, 1986.
1988 Canadian Bar Association affirms need for claims to be submitted to an independent body
1988 Bill C-115 (Kamloops amendments) establishes power of bands to tax reserve lands
1989 Claxton vs. Saanichton Marina (BC Court of Appeal) confirms Douglas Treaty rights
1990 R. vs. Sparrow clarifies constitutionally protected aboriginal fishing rights (SCC)
1990 Assembly of First Nations (AFN) issues critique of federal land claims policies
1990 Province abandons 119-year old policy of refusing to acknowledge aboriginal title
1990 Tripartite BC Claims Task Force established to consider comprehensive claims issues
1990 Indian Self-government Enabling Act (BC)
1990 Accord…The Chiefs of Secwepemc (Shuswap Naton) reaffirm working toward Aboriginal rights, title and land claims as Spences Bridge protocol.
1991 Federal government agrees to consider pre-Confederation specific claims
1991 Federal government agrees to fast-track specific claims valued at less than $500,000
1991 Federal government lifts cap on the number of comprehensive claims under negotiation
1991 Report of the BC Claims Task Force recommends new treaty process for BC
1991 BC government formally acknowledges the Indian Land Question
1991 BC Court of Appeal rules that aboriginal rights were extinguished before 1871
1991 The Indian Claims Commission was established as a Commission of Inquiry mandated to help First Nations and the federal government settle claims.
1991 Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples established
1992 BC Treaty Commission Agreement concluded (Some BC bands remain outside process), BC Treaty Commission launched by provincial government
1992 Joint First Nations/Canada Working Group discusses reforms to specific claims process
1992 Schedule of Indian Bands, Reserves and Settlements published by DIAND
1992 Secwepemc Chiefs Political Protocol, confirm commitment to work collectively to protect, assert, advance, and negotiate a just and fair settlement to Secwepemc Land Title and self-governance within our Territory.
1993 Joint First Nations/Canada Working Group dismantled when impasse reached
1993 BC Court of Appeal rules Gitsan & Wet’suwet’en have unextinguished aboriginal title
1993 British Columbia Treaty Commission Act
1993 Liberal Red Book promises claims will be considered by an independent commission
1994 Assembly of First Nations issues report on the reform of federal land claims policies
1994 Xeteqs te Sq’yem’pte te Secweplu’kw’s re Qelmucw, Secwepemc Chief’s Unity Conference May 25 & 26th, North Thompson Indian band continued collaboration on land title.
1995 Independent fact finder Alvin Hamilton issues report on extinguishment and certainty
1995 Province of BC introduces its Traditional Use Studies (TUS) policy
1995 Federal government acknowledges First Nations inherent right to self-government
1995 Kamloops Indian Band Out-of-Court Settlement to repatriate Scheidam Flats, Specific Claims landmark Douglas Reserve/Trutch Cut-Off case.
1996 Adams Lake Indian Band, Little Shuswap and Neskonlith bands submit, larger specific claim called Neskonlith Claim to federal and provincial government which was rejected.
1996 Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples issues its final report
1996 R. vs. Van der Peet clarifies aboriginal rights
1996 R. vs. Nikal, R. vs. Lewis and R. vs. NTC Smokehouse clarifies aboriginal rights
1996 Nisga’a sign agreement-in-principle regarding their comprehensive land claim
1996 Joint First Nations/Canada Task Force (JTF) discuss reforming specific claims policy
1997 Delgamuuk’w vs. British Columbia upholds aboriginal title (SCC)
1998 First Nations/Canada Joint Task Force proposes independent commission and tribunal to resolve specific claims
1998 Nisga’a sign agreement with federal and provincial governments
1999 Nisga'a Treaty ratified by BC Legislature
1999 Westbank First Nations initiates direct action by harvesting trees
1999 Bill C-9, Nisga's Final Agreement brought into House of Commons
1999 Nisga'a Treaty passed second reading of House of Commons
2000 Nisga'a received Royal Assent, passed law
2000 Historical Joint Statement regarding Aboriginal Title made by First Nations Summit, Assembly of First Nations, and Union of BC Indian Chiefs
2001 Liberal Leader, Gordan Campbell purposes Aboriginal BC Treaty referendum on Aboriginal treaty principles
2003 Declaration of the Secwepemc Nation to work Together in Forestry, April 10, 2003.