Bicentennial Anniversary of Battle of Seven Oaks Kicks Off with Special Exhibit at Canadian Museum for Human Rights

June 16, 2016

Winnipeg, MB – The Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF) will mark the 200th anniversary of the historic Battle of Seven Oaks with commemorative and celebratory events taking place Thursday, June 16th through Sunday, June 19th, including a special exhibit at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR).  

The commemoration includes a partnership with Library and Archives Canada (LAC) and the CMHR to display the historic investigative report on the Battle of Seven Oaks. The report, published by Lt. Col. William B. Coltman in 1818, found the Métis reacted within the reasonable boundaries of self-defense during the battle. It will be available for viewing in the Protecting Rights Gallery of the CMHR from June 16th-23rd.

Other bicentennial events include the Métis National Council’s General Assembly, taking place in Winnipeg – the birthplace of the Métis Nation and heart of the Métis Nation Homeland, and a symposium exploring the emergence of the Métis Nation. During the last day of the General Assembly, the MMF’s Louis Riel Institute will host a public symposium 2 pm at the Fort Garry Hotel on the Emergence of the Métis Nation and renowned Métis leader, Cuthbert Grant. The first time Grant and his men flew the Métis Nation’s Infinity flag was during the turbulent time in 1816 around the Battle of Seven Oaks.

Commemorative activities on the anniversary of the Battle will take place Sunday, June 19th, include: a memorial at Cuthbert Grant’s gravesite marker at St. François Xavier Parish at 9 a.m.; lunch at Grant’s Old Mill in Winnipeg at 11 a.m., and an unveiling of the renewed Battle of Seven Oaks National Historic Site at 1:30 p.m.


“The Battle of Seven Oaks is a critical event in the emergence of the Métis Nation during which we asserted ourselves as an independent and culturally distinct people. It marks a historic time when the Métis emerged victorious after being forced to fight for our right to free trade, and our right to exist.” 

President David Chartrand

Manitoba Metis Federation

“On behalf of Dr. Guy Berthiaume, the Librarian and Archivist of Canada, I am very pleased to be able to loan these historic documents to the Canadian Museum of Human Rights. Not only are we making key documents in our country’s history accessible to the Métis Nation, we are also helping to inform Canadians about the history of the Métis, as part of our renewed relationship with Indigenous peoples. I am also very proud to be introducing our new transcription tool, which will turn any interested Canadians into volunteer archivists by allowing them to help transcribe the fully digitized Coltman Report online.”

Nathalie Villeneuve

Director of Exhibitions and Online Content, Library and Archives Canada

“These fascinating artifacts contribute to human rights education by making history come alive. As a national museum of Canada, we are pleased to host this exhibit.”

John Young

President and CEO, Canadian Museum for Human Rights


Additional Information:

For more information and to see a full agenda of the commemorative activities taking place on Sunday, June 19th, please view the following document:

For more information on William Coltman’s report and Library and Archives Canada’s transcription tool, please visit the following link:


Believe in Yourself; Believe in Métis.

The Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF) is the official democratic and self-governing political representative for the Métis Nation’s Manitoba Métis Community. The Manitoba Métis are Canada’s Negotiating Partner in Confederation and the Founders of the Province of Manitoba.

Winnipeg – once known as the Red River Settlement – is the Birthplace of the Métis Nation and the Heart of the Métis Nation Homeland.


For media information, please contact:

Jonathan Hamel
Director of Communications
Manitoba Metis Federation

Phone:             (204) 586-8474 ext. 324
Cell:                 (204) 806-4752

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