A brief history of Sagkeeng

Sagkeeng is comprised of Anicinabe people who have resided at or near the Fort Alexander Indian Reserve #3 located along the Winnipeg River and Traverse Bay, since time immemorial.

The ancestors of the Anicinabe people of Sagkeeng signed Treaty 1 in 1871.  The Fort Alexander Indian Reserve of approximately 21,674 acres was surveyed in 1874 and has a current band membership of 7,637 people with approximately 3,352 living on reserve.

Sagkeeng’s traditional territory includes land within Treaty #1 and land north and west of the Winnipeg River. In June 2007 the Sagkeeng Chief and Council filed a Statement of Claim seeking court recognition of unextinguished Aboriginal Title over traditional lands situated outside Treaty #1. In addition to this claim, in September 2010, Sagkeeng submitted a revised Treaty Land Entitlement claim which is currently before the Specific Claims Tribunal.

The Sagkeeng Anicinabe Government’s current leadership consists of five elected members: Chief Derrick Henderson, and Councillors Lin Dorie, John Courchene, Dylan Courchene, Erin Courchene, Henry Swampy and Tania Twoheart. This leadership was elected in April of 2019.

Sagkeeng holds its annual Treaty Days in the last week of July of every year.  Everyone is welcome to enjoy the events which includes a community parade, various children events, pow wow, fireworks and community events.

Circa 4400 BCE

First human settlement in Sagkeeng area.

Circa 1700

People had their own treaties as nations before the arrival of Europeans, Sagkeeng was part of the territory of Cree and Assiniboine people. The first Oji-Cree and Métis appeared as the people began to mix.


Anicinabe from Sault Ste. Marie migrated to Sagkeeng.


Hudson’s Bay Company built Fort Alexander on the South Shore of the Winnipeg River.


Hudson’s Bay Company amalgamated with North West Company’s Fort Bas de la Rivière, and it was renamed Fort Alexander.


Treaty 1 signed. The treaty only applied to the South Shore of Sagkeeng.


Treaty 3 signed. The treaty only applied to the North Shore of Sagkeeng.


Fort Alexander Indian Reserve was surveyed.


Treaty 5 signed. The treaty only applied to the North Shore of Sagkeeng.


Catholic Fort Alexander Indian Residential School opened.


Roman Catholic North Shore School opened.


Reserve land was stolen. The Chief was kidnapped, and held against his will until he agreed to lease the land. The land was illegally sold to Manitoba Pulp and Paper Company, creating Pine Falls, which started production in 1927.


Northside Anglican School opened.


Green School opened, Roman Catholic School closed on the north shore.


Sagkeeng Consolidated School opened.


Church of England Catholic Day School closed.


Fort Alexander town site and first band office built. The FrontRunners, 10 standout First Nations track athletes of Fort Alexander Indian Residential School, were chosen to carry the Pan Am torch over a five- day, 800km run that started in St. Paul, Minnesota, and ended at the Winnipeg Stadium. However, just before delivering the torch, they were turned away at the stadium door, not allowed in, and denied carrying the torch—it was taken from them and given to a non-Indigenous runner.


Catholic Fort Alexander Indian Residential School closed


Catholic Fort Alexander Indian Residential School demolished.


Anicinabe Community School built.


Health Centre opened.


Push for self-government in Sagkeeng.


Fire department opened.


Sagkeeng Anicinabe High School built.


Sagkeeng Junior High School opened.


Tim Hortons opened.


Sagkeeng’s Finest, a trio dance troupe that fused traditional clogging and tap, won the first season of Canada’s Got Talent.


New Sagkeeng Anicinabe Community School opened.

Close Search Window