The Digital Archive Database (DAD) project is being created as a focused, contextualized, and integrated digital archive that brings together a number of historical-content databases in a common web-based archival format. The goal is to ensure that these historical-content databases are publically available to anyone pursuing policy, legal, genealogical, religious, or scholarly research-related projects.
While the researchers who compiled and transcribed these archival documents were engaged in Metis-specific research projects, they make no claim that the records exclusively narrate a Metis history or experience. The databases contain transcriptions of Protestant and Catholic sacramental registers, census data, and fur trade records that document the lives and experiences of a variety of peoples in contact with the institutions that created the original documents. As such, while users may find material relating to Metis individuals within the databases, they should understand that DAD is not a Metis-specific archive.
There are three basic document sets currently contained within DAD: 1. Protestant and Catholic sacramental records (birth, marriage, death) from a variety of missions between Michilimackinac in the east and Fort Edmonton to the west; 2. Census’ from Red River and Manitoba; and 3. Fur trade records from west of the Rocky Mountains. The databases that comprise DAD were created through a number of distinct research projects undertaken by various members of the team since 2003 and contain 109262 transcribed records from:
1. Sacramental Records from the Great Lakes, Red River, and Great Plains:
Mackinac Register of Baptisms, Marriages, and Interments: 1695-1821
Red River Settlement
St. John’s Cathedral: B (1813-1879); M (1820-1882); S (1821-1875)
St. Paul’s Middlechurch: B (1850-1882); M (1853-1892); S (1850-1903)
St. Peter’s Dynevor: B (1839-1877); M (1850-1890); S (1839-1885)
St. Andrews: B (1845-1872); M (1835-1870):
I. Registers of Baptisms (1820-1851)
a. E.4/1a: 1820-1841, folios 27-174d
b. E.4/2: 1841-1851, folios 2-78
II. Registers of Marriages (1820-1851)
a. E.4/1b: 1820-1841, folios 191-271
b. E.4/2: 1841-1851, folios 81-127
III. Registers of Funerals (1820-1851)
a. E.4/1b: 1820-1841, folios 273-314
1. St. Charles, Manitoba (1868-1870)
2. St. Boniface, Manitoba (1825-1834)
3. St. François Xavier, Manitoba (1834-1889)
3.1. Sacramental Registry, Saint François Xavier, Index & Register, vol. 1, 1834-44
3.2. Sacramental Registry, Saint François Xavier, Index & Register, vol. 2, 1844-54
3.3. Sacramental Registry, Saint François Xavier, Index & Registers, vol. 3, 1854-64
3.4. Sacramental Registry, Saint François Xavier, vol. 4, Index and Registers, 1864-74 (pt. 2)
3.5. Sacramental Registry, Saint François Xavier, vol. 5 & 5B, Index and Registers, 1874-84; 1876-79 (pt. 2)
3.6. Sacramental Registry, Saint François Xavier, vol. 6, Index and Registers, 1884-89 (pt. 2)
Catholic Missions (Canada and United States)
1. Lebret RC Cemetery, no. 187.4
2. Mission St. Peter's, Diocese Great Falls (Montana), Vol. I, Marriages/ 1859-1895 (1750/1869)
3. Mission St. Peter's, Diocese Great Falls (Montana), Vol. II/ Baptisms/ 1855-1879 (1750/1870)
4. Sacré Coeur, Cascade, Fort Shaw (Montana), Baptisms/ 1895-1960/ #1 (1750/3067)
5. Sacré Coeur, Cascade, Fort Shaw (Montana), Baptisms/ 1895-1960/ #2 (1750/3068)
6. Saint-Joseph de Pembina/ Registers B-M-S/ 1848-1854 (1750/3076)
7. Saint-Joseph de Pembina/ Registers B-M-S/ 1854-1859 (1750/3077)
8. Saint-Joseph de Pembina/ Registers B-M-S/ 1859-66 (1750/3078)
9. Saint-Joseph de Pembina/ Registers B-M-S/ 1866-74 (1750/3079)
10. Saint-Joseph de Leroy, North Dakota / Marriage Register BMS/ 1870-73 (1750/3080)
11. Saint-Joseph de Leroy, North Dakota / Marriage Register BMS/ 1873-1876 (1750/3081)
12. Saint-Joseph de Leroy, North Dakota / Marriage Register BMS/ 1877-1881 (1750/3082)
13. Saint-Joseph de Leroy, North Dakota / Marriage Register BMS/ 1881-1885 (1750/3083)
14. Saint-Joseph de Leroy, North Dakota / Marriage Register BMS/ 1885-1888 (1750/3084)
15. Saint-Joseph de Leroy, North Dakota / Marriage Register / 1888-1906 (1750/3085)
16. Sacré Coeur, Olga North Dakota, BMS/ 1882-1885 (1750/3086)
17. Ancient Registers de Saint-Boniface saved from the fire of 1860
18. St. Peter's, Minnesota (1/1777/3018)
19. St. Joseph, North Dakota, sépultures/ 1883-1907 (1/1777/3021)
20. St. Joseph's LeRoy and Walhalla, North Dakota, Baptisms/ 1888-1906 (1/1777/3022)
21. St. Joseph's LeRoy and Walhalla, North Dakota, Baptisms/ 1888-1906 (1/1777/3023 to 3026)
22. Battleford Saskatchewan 1878-1907 (1/1777/3040)
23. Lebret Parish Records, Volume No. 1 -- 1868-1881/ Register of St Florent Mission of Qu'Appelle Lake, Saskatchewan
24. Lebret Parish Records, Volume No. 2 -- 1881-1887/ Register of St Florent Mission of Qu'Appelle Lake, Saskatchewan
25. Register of the St Joseph Mission, Cumberland
26. Muskeg Lake.1878 and 1880
27. Sacramental Registry, Saint-Louis, Saskatchewan/ 1886-1927 (1/1777/3041)
28. Sacramental Registry, Sainte-Anne Mission, Alberta/ 1884-1959 (1/1777/3042)
29. Sacramental Registry, Sainte-Anne Mission, Alberta/ 1884-1959 (1/1777/3043)
2. Census’, 1827-1892:
1. Red River Census
2. Manitoba Census: 1870
3. Red River Census: Famine Relief 1867-1868
4. Minnesota Census: 1850
5. Turtle Mountain Census: 1892
3. Western North American Fur Trade Documents, 1793-1858:
This is a database developed from the 3 volume work, Lives Lived West of the Divide: A Biographical Dictionary of Fur Traders Working West of the Rockies, 1793-1858 by author Bruce Watson. This searchable database contains 3543 individual biographical entries, many cross-referenced into related groups. Lives Lived tells the story of those resilient individuals who were part of the fur trade which, during the first half of the 19th century, extended from northern British Columbia to southern Oregon. The work is a result of 20 years of research into the many individuals involved in the fur trade west of the Rocky Mountains and spans the international border from Northern British Columbia to southern Oregon. Avoiding the traditional fur trade historiography often written from the point of view of the decision makers, this more inclusive comprehensive biographical dictionary details the lives of the over 3,500 individuals who were involved in the fur trade during the period 1793-1858.
DAD was created in such a way to allow for the possibility of adding future historical materials and databases.
The creation of the original historical-content databases as well as DAD were assisted by funding from Métis and Non-Status Indian Relations branch of Indian and Northern Affairs Canada.
Brenda Macdougall is currently the Chair of Métis Research and an associate professor of geography at the University of Ottawa. Through her scholarship, she has worked extensively with (and on) historical Metis communities in across Canada documenting the connections and relationships between family members as a lens to understanding both Metis society and culture. In her role as research chair, Brenda oversees a number of significant research grants each of which is focused on tracing Metis family and, in turn, historical communities as she works to document the contours of a people. She has published articles in notable journals such as the Canadian Historical Review, Journal of Ethnohistory, and Labour/Le Travail while her first book, One of the Family: Metis Culture in Nineteenth Century Northwestern Saskatchewan, won the Canadian Historical Association’s 2011 Clio prize for best book in prairie history. She was recently elected a Fellow in the Royal Canadian Geographical Society.
St-Onge, Nicole, Carolyn Podruchny and Brenda Macdougall. Contours of a People: Métis Family, Mobility and History. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2012.
Macdougall, Brenda. One of the Family: Metis Culture in Nineteenth Century Northwestern Saskatchewan. University of British Columbia Press, 2010.
Macdougall, Brenda. “Knowing Who You Are: Family History and Aboriginal Health Determinants.” In Determinants of Indigenous Peoples’ Health In Canada: Beyond the Social, edited by M. Greenwood, S. de Leeuw, N. M. Lindsay, & C. Reading, 185-204. Canadian Scholars Press, 2015.
Macdougall, Brenda. “Speaking of Metis: Reading Family Life into Colonial Records.” Journal of Ethnohistory 61, no. 1(2014): 27–56.
Macdougall, Brenda and Nicole St-Onge. “Rooted in Mobility: Metis Buffalo Hunting Brigades.” Manitoba History 71 (2013): 21–32.
Macdougall, Brenda, “The Myth of Metis Cultural Ambivalence.” In Contours of Metis Landscapes: Family, Mobility, and History in Northwestern North America, edited by Nicole St-Onge, Carolyn Podruchny, and Brenda Macdougall, 422–464. University of Oklahoma Press, 2012.
Macdougall, Brenda. “‘The Comforts of Married Life’: Metis Family Life, Labour, and the Hudson’s Bay Company.” Labour/Le Travail 61 (2008): 9–40.
Macdougall, Brenda, Wahkootowin: Family and Cultural Identity in Northwestern Saskatchewan Metis Communities, Canadian Historical Review, vol. 87, no. 3(2006): 431-462.
Nicole St-Onge is currently a full Professor in the Department of History as well as the Interim Co-Coordinator of the Aboriginal Studies program at the University of Ottawa. Her academic interests include the fur trade and the Northwest (mainly 1780-1880), Métis history, and ethnohistory and Micro-history. Her current research involves examining the history of French-Canadian fur trade employees in the American Fur Company (1817-1837) as well as the Plains Métis ethnogenesis 1780-1880. She is also interested in the French Catholic population of Michilimackinac from 1780-1850.
St-Onge, Nicole, Carolyn Podruchny and Brenda Macdougall. Contours of a People: Métis Family, Mobility and History. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2012.
St-Onge, Nicole. “Familial Foe?: French-Sioux Families and Plains Métis Brigades in the Nineteenth Century.” In The American Indian Quarterly 39, no. 3(2015): 302-337.
St-Onge, Nicole. Saint-Laurent, Manitoba: Evolving Métis Identities, 1850-1914. Regina: Canadian Plains Research Center, 2004.
St-Onge, Nicole. “‘Blue Beads, Vermilion and Scalpers’: the Social Economy of the 1810-1812 Astorian Overland Expedition’s French-Canadian Voyageurs.” In French and Indians in the Heart of North America, 1630-1815, edited by Robert Englebert and Guillaume Teasdale, chapter 8. East Lansing, Michigan: Michigan State University Press, 2013.
Macdougall, Brenda, Carolyn Podruchny and Nicole St-Onge. “Introduction: Cultural Mobility and the Contours of Difference.” In Contours of a People: Métis Family, Mobility and History, edited by Nicole St -Onge, Carolyn Podruchny and Brenda Macdougall, 3-21. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2012.
St-Onge, Nicole and Carolyn Podruchny. “Scuttling Along a Spider’s Web: Mobility and Kinship in Metis Ethnogenesis.” Contours of a People: Métis Family, Mobility and History, edited by Nicole St -Onge, Carolyn Podruchny and Brenda Macdougall, 59-92. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2012.
St-Onge, Nicole. “Plains Métis: Contours of an Identity.” Australasian Canadian Studies 27 (2009): 95-115.
St-Onge, Nicole. "The Persistence of Travel and Trade: St. Lawrence River Valley French Engagés and the American Fur Company, 1818-1840." Michigan Historical Review 34, no. 2 (2008): 17-37.
St-Onge, Nicole. “Early Forefathers to the Athabasca Metis: Long-term North West Company Employees.” The Long Journey of a Forgotten People: Metis Identities and Family Histories, edited by David McNab and Ute Lischke, 109-161. Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2007.
St-Onge, Nicole. “Uncertain Margins: Métis and Saulteaux identities in St-Paul des Saulteaux – Red River, 1821-1870.” Manitoba History Journal 53 (2006): 1-10.
Mike Evans is currently a Professor in the Community, Culture, and Global Sciences program at the University of British Columbia Okanagan. Formerly the head of the School of Arts and Social Sciences at Southern Cross University, he has taught at the University of Northern BC, the University of Alberta, and Okanagan University College, later UBC Okanagan (2005). He has worked extensively with colleagues at the Métis Nation of British Columbia on a number of research projects dealing with historic and contemporary Métis communities in BC, some of which are discussed in this volume. Together with Elders and community leaders in Prince George he put together a Métis Studies curriculum for UNBC and a number of publications including What it is to be a Métis (Evans et al 1999, 2007).
Evans, Mike, Adrian Miller, Peter Hutchinson and Carlene Dingwall. “De-Colonizing Research Practice: Indigenous Methodologies, Aboriginal Methods, and Knowledge/Knowing”, in Oxford Handbook of Qualitative Research. Patricia Leavy (ed.) New York: NY, Oxford University Press, 2014. 179-191.
Ferguson, Hazel and Mike Evans, with the Northern Rivers Landed Histories Research Group. “Post-organic? The cultural dimensions of organic farming in the Northern Rivers of NSW.” Locale: The Australasian-Pacific Journal of Regional Food Studies 3.1(2013): 1-28.
Evans, Mike, Jean Barman, Gabrielle Legault, with Erin Dolmage and Geoff Appleby. “Métis Networks in British Colombia: Examples from the Central Interior.” In Contours of a People: Métis Family, Mobility and History, edited by Nicole St -Onge, Carolyn Podruchny and Brenda Macdougall, 331-367. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2012.
Evans, Mike and S. Foster. “A case of genocide: the political and cartographic erasure of the Island Cache (British Columbia).” Shima: the International Journal of Research into Island Cultures 4 (2010): 88-97.
Sookraj, Dixon, Peter Hutchinson, Michael Evans, and Mary Ann Murphy. "Aboriginal Organizational Response to the Need for Culturally Appropriate Services in Three Small Canadian Cities." Journal of Social Work 12, no. 2 (2012): 136-157.
Chris Andersen is Métis from Prince Albert, Saskatchewan. Andersen is a Professor in the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta and is currently the Interim Dean. Formerly the director of the Rupertsland Centre for Métis Research, he is the author of two books including, with Maggie Walter, Indigenous Statistics: A Quantitative Indigenous Methodology (Left Coast Press, 2013) and “Métis”: Race, Recognition and the Struggle for Indigenous Peoplehood (UBC Press, 2014). Dr. Andersen is a member of Statistics Canada’s Advisory Committee on Social Conditions and is editor of the journal aboriginal policy studies. He was recently elected as a member of the Royal Society of Canada’s College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists.
Andersen, Chris. Métis: Race, Recognition, and the Struggle for Indigenous Peoplehood. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2014.
Andersen, Chris. “Settling for Community? Juridical Visions of Historical Metis Collectivity in and after R v. Powley.” In Contours of a People: Métis Family, Mobility and History, edited by Nicole St -Onge, Carolyn Podruchny and Brenda Macdougall, 392-421. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2012.
Andersen, Chris. “Residual Tensions of Empire: Contemporary Métis Communities and the Canadian Judicial Imagination.” In Reconfiguring Aboriginal-State Relations: Canada: The State of the Federation, edited by M. Murphy, 295–325. Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2005.
Andersen, Chris. “The Formalization of Métis Identities in Canadian Provincial Courts.” In Expressions in Canadian Native Studies, edited by Ron Laliberte et. al., 95-115. Saskatoon: University Extension Press, 2000.
Dr. Ramon Lawrence is an associate professor of computer science at the University of British Columbia. His research interests are database systems, embedded devices, and wireless sensor networks, and have resulted in over 50 publications. He is the founder of Unity Data Inc. (www.unityjdbc.com) that provides software for data integration from multiple sources and is a database consultant for enterprises, including Fortune 500 companies such as GE, requiring Big Data (and small data) solutions. Current work on MongoDB produced software for SQL querying and integrating MongoDB with enterprise relational systems that is used by numerous companies world-wide. Dr. Lawrence is a member of the ACM and senior member of IEEE.
Students who created databases, collected documents, transcribed records, and built DAD:
University of Ottawa
Data Entry and Verification
Sara Baddeley Girard
Emilie Moreau Johnson
University of British Columbia, Okanagan
University of Alberta