JULY 4, 1886

CREE CHIEF PÎHTOKAHANAPIWIYIN (POUNDMAKER) DIED

Born near Battleford, Saskatchewan, around 1842, Poundmaker was raised by Cree relatives.  As an adult, he was adopted by Blackfoot Chief Crowfoot.  The name “Poundmaker” came from his expertise in building pounds for hunting buffalo.  A fine orator, he spoke out against the government’s failure to live up to treaties.  In 1885, he led members of several starving bands to Battleford for rations.  The village being deserted, they helped themselves to supplies.  Troops met up with Poundmaker and his followers at Cut Knife Creek, where they were encamped.  On May 2, a battle ensued and Federal troops were forced to withdraw.  Learning of Louis Riel’s defeat at Batoche ending the North-West Rebellion of the Métis people, he too surrendered his arms at Batoche.  Convicted of treason, he was sentenced to serve three years imprisonment in Manitoba.  While he served only 7 months, it destroyed his health.  Visiting Chief Crowfoot in 1886, he died of a lung hemorrhage at age 44.  

Source:  Christian Thompson, "Poundmaker," Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan. University of Regina.  Retrieved 7/5/2019, https://web.archive.org/web/20171019004729/http://esask.uregina.ca/entry/poundmaker_c_1842-86.html
Photo:  Prof. Buell, O.B. (1844-1910), 1885.  Library and Archives Canada.  Public Domain in U.S.:  Pre 1/1/1925.  Public Domain elsewhere where copyright term is author’s life plus 70 years or less.

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