Categories: Red River Colony | Saint-Boniface, Manitoba | Montréal, Québec | Montana Territory | Regina, Northwest Territories | Cimetière de Cathédrale de Saint-Boniface, Winnipeg, Manitoba | Persons of National Historic Significance | Collaborative Profile of the Week | Canadian History.
||Louis Riel Jr. participated in Canadian history.|
Join: Canadian History Project
Note: Excerpt: Legacy
" Politically and philosophically, Riel's execution has had a lasting effect on Canadian history. Riel’s execution made him the martyr of the Métis people. In Central Canada, the political fallout from Riel’s hanging enlivened French Canadian nationalism, propelling Honoré Mercier, who came to power in Québec in 1886 on a platform that played to the feelings aroused by Riel's hanging. Riel’s death also caused a fundamental shift in Québec voting trends, moving the province’s traditional support of the Conservative Party to the Liberal Party led by Wilfrid Laurier. Riel's execution remains a contentious issue, and demands for his retroactive pardon have been made on a number of occasions. Far from the days where Riel was a hated “traitor” and the “murderer” of Thomas Scott, Riel has been recognized as a Father of Confederation, as a wronged man, as a defender of his people, and as a protector of minority rights in Canada.
Riel has a number of statues commemorating him in his home province. In 2007, Manitoba recognized him with a public holiday held annually in February. For the Métis, 16 November, the day of Riel’s execution, is a national public commemoration of Riel’s life and the struggles he led. Riel still remains the most famous Métis leader and an important figurehead for Métis people in Western Canada.
Riel’s place in Canadian history is more celebratory than in the past. For many, Riel has become a Canadian hero, as he embodies many contemporary issues in the country — bilingualism, multiculturalism, tolerance for difference, a keen sense of social justice — than many of his contemporaries. However, writers often ignore that Riel was very cautious of the Canadian national project, seeing it as assimilatory as much as unifying. Métis scholars now critique the zeal with which Riel has been Canadianized and how this appropriation is often at odds with Riel’s political beliefs, which featured a prominent place for Métis nationalism and political independence. 
Louis Riel was born in the Red River Colony (near present-day Winnipeg, Manitoba) on 22 October 1844. He was the son of Louis Riel Sr. and Julie Lagimodière. His father was Franco-Ojibwa Métis, and his mother was part of one of the first white families to settle in the Red River Colony. Louis was the oldest of 11 children in the family.
Riel led the Métis in two resistance movements against the Canadian government: the Red River Rebellion of 1869-1870, and the North-West Rebellion of 1885. The latter ended with Riel being convicted of high treason, for which he was executed on 16 November 1885. He is buried in the cemetery at St. Boniface Cathedral in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
A promising student, the young Riel was sent on scholarship to Montreal to study for the priesthood. Louis left school after his father died, so that he could help to support his mother and siblings. As part of this effort, he worked as a law clerk, and at other jobs, some in the United States. He was described as about five and a half feet tall, and somewhat slim.
In 1869, the Hudson Bay Company agreed to sell Rupert's Land, and the Northwest Territory, to the Dominion of Canada. Concerned for the rights of the Métis, the Métis National Committee, with Riel as its secretary, was formed "to protect the social, cultural and political status of the Métis in Red River and the Northwest more generally."
After successfully stopping a Canadian government survey of the land, the Committee set up a provisional government of it's own. Louis Riel became the president. Armed with their list of rights, the Red River Rebellion of 1869 led to the Manitoba Act and Manitoba's entry into the Canadian Confederation.
Because of his actions, especially the court martial and execution of Thomas Scott, Louis was forced to leave the country. He made several attempts to return, and was elected to the government three times, but was never able to take his seat.
In October 1874, Riel was convicted of the murder of Thomas Scott. The Governor General commuted the sentence of death and Louis was to serve two years imprisonment. Riel was granted amnesty, but was required to remain in exile for five years.
Between 1875 and 1884, Louis lived in New York; married Marguerite Monet; had three children; became a United States citizen; and taught in Montana.
Riel returned to Canada at the request of some Métis residents, who wanted help obtaining their rights. 9-12 May 1885, the Métis forces were defeated by Canadian militia at the Battle of Batoche.
- ↑ [(http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/louis-riel/)]
- ↑ Date on tombstone; see attached image.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 [http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/louis-riel/ "Louis Riel." The Canadian Encyclopedia.
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 [https://www.gov.mb.ca/february_holiday/chronology.html "Louis Riel Day." A Chronology of Events in the Life of Louis Riel 1844 - 1885.
- ↑ "Another Letter" St. Paul Daily Press (St. Paul, MN). Saturday, December 18, 1869, Volume: IX, Issue: 299, Page: 1 (accessed at Genealogy.Bank)
- ↑ Image, © 2015 University of Manitoba Louis Riel's Death Certificate
- Wikipedia:Louis Riel
- Dictionary of Canadian Biography - Louis Riel
- 1870 Census of Manitoba, page 68, St. Vital Parish.
- Louis Riel: a Bibliography, (Arora, Ved Parkash, compilor), Provincial Library Regina, Saskatchewan, 1972.
- Louis 'David' Riel: Prophet of the New World, (Thomas Flanagan), Goodread Biography, 1983 .
- Riel and the Rebellion: 1885 Reconsidered, (Thomas Flanagan), Western Producer Prairie Books, 1983.
- The Riel Rebellion, 1885, (Frank W. Anderson), Frontier Book Co., 1984.
- Louis Riel: Rebel of the Western Frontier or Victim of Politics and Prejudice?, (Hartwell Bowsfield), Copp Clark Publishing, Toronto, 1969.
- The Life of Louis Riel, (Peter Charlebois), New Canada Publications, 1975.
- The Strange Empire of Louis Riel, (Joseph Kinsey Howard), Swan Publishing Co., Toronto, Ont., 1970.
- To Louis Riel From Your Sister Who Loves You: Sara Riel, (Mary Veronica Jordan), Griffin House, Toronto, 1974.
- Louis Riel: The Rebellion of 1885, (George Henry Needler), Burns & MacEachern, 1957.
- Louis Riel, (Rosemary Neering), Fitzhenry & Whiteside, 1999.
- The diaries of Louis Riel, (Louis Riel), Hurtig Pub, 1982.
- Report of Sir Alexander Campbell  1885 book
Searching for someone else?
Do you have a GEDCOM? Login to have every name in your tree searched. It's free (like everything on WikiTree).
- Louis Riel Does not belong in Outlaws Project Feb 28, 2017.
- Am I a descendant of Louis Riel or share ancestors with him? Jan 16, 2016.
- Help us improve the profile of Canadian folk hero, Louis Riel! Feb 24, 2015.
It may be possible to confirm family relationships with Louis by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known yDNA or mtDNA test-takers in his direct paternal or maternal line. It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share DNA with Louis:
Have you taken a DNA test for genealogy? If so, login to add it. If not, see our friends at Family Tree DNA.
- Login to edit this profile.
- Private Messages: Send a private message to the Profile Manager. (Best when privacy is an issue.)
- Public Comments: Login to post. (Best for messages specifically directed to those editing this profile. Limit 20 per day.)
- Public Q&A: These will appear above and in the Genealogist-to-Genealogist (G2G) Forum. (Best for anything directed to the wider genealogy community.)
On 16 Mar 2017 at 05:21 GMT Darrell Parker wrote:
There were laws of trading, marriage and death, birth and dealing with the other tribes that lived nearby and with whom he may have had alliances or differences. They lived one with nature for mother Earth and consider all living being with his spirit. Hence was the respect and homage that was given from the killing of a buffalo that may be used to help a family survive through the winter for the simple plucking stage to be used in a smudging ceremony. An offering was given in a prayer rendered as a way of thanks from the life that was taken. Always respected and all was considered sacred.
The definition of an outlaw, is to live outside the law, however if that law is nonexistent or abusing the very law that put in place, then there is a problem. In the circumstances of the Métis in Manitoba and Saskatchewan, none of the concerns were being acknowledge, this is the Canadian Government absence of law, so they were the outlaws! So the Métis had no recourse under the leadership of Louis Riel but put order in the vacuum of the Hudson Bay Company leaving and the Canadian Government not responding. The Manitoba Act made by the Metis which formed the Province of Manitoba the Métis were given 1,4000,000 acres of land where they could live. But this law was not abided by and it has been over 130 years of dealing with the government of Canada that this has just been recognized. The Métis were abused and persecuted in the newly formed Province of Manitoba and left further west where they could maintain their way of life. But it was only for a short while and the Canadian Government was knocking again. This time in 1885
Louis Riel was asked on several occasions to join the United States of America which he could have done. But chose to try and work with Government of Newly forming Canada, which would give him the title of being a father of Confederation. The same can be said for all the Chiefs that signed treaty to allow settlement of the west. Without the signing of Treaty with the First Nations this Canada boundary would end in Ontario. It is just a lease that can be terminated when Canada is not fulfilling its duties and signatory of Treaty.
All the petitions that were sent to Ottawa were subsequently ignored, the Métis had no choice but to form a Provisional Government and take matters into their own hands for their own survival and the survival of the other people in Western Canada. There has to be Law where there is none so the Métis were taking reasonably for the manner in which the lives of people in the Saskatchewan wanted to be looked after. That included the First Nations and some white settlers here already. John A. McDonald who is the Prime Minister at that time saw this as an act of treason and sent out his Canadian military to suppress the uprising. So in the spring of 1885 we saw some exchanges of gunfire and battle between the Métis, First Nations and the Canadian government. All of these event culminating resulting in the Battle of Batoche, which saw an end to a way of life that many Métis had lived for hundreds of years in an end to the First Nation’s hope bartering a better deal from the Canadian Government.
Riel was an upstanding man that only carried a bible into Battle and followed their laws of war which go back to Biblical times. He stopped the use of guerilla tactics, such as starting a prairie fire surely would have decimated the Canadian militia and also the sabotage of the railway tracks that would have had catastrophic outcomes.
On 17 Feb 2017 at 05:41 GMT Darrell Parker wrote:
On 18 Nov 2016 at 05:27 GMT Chris Hoult wrote:
Louis is 20 degrees from Kevin Bacon, 18 degrees from Stephen Hopkins, 26 degrees from Ben Kingsley, 24 degrees from David Selman and 19 degrees from Queen Elizabeth II of the Commonwealth Realms on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.