JULY 15, 1854


Born circa 1793, near current Kamsack, Saskatchewan, Grant, of Cree descent through his mother, is largely responsible for the concept of a Métis nation.  His father and uncle formed the North West Company (NWC).  By 1812, NWC and the Hudson Bay Company (HBC) fought to control the fur trade.  NWC hired Grant to form an alliance with the Métis with their tradition of frontier warfare and Indian tactics.  By 1816, Grant’s irregular Métis cavalry stole horses, seized hostages, attacked HBC settlers in Selkirk, and participated in the Seven Oaks Massacre.  In 1821, the conflict ended as the companies united under the HBC charter.  Grant retired from the company in 1824, settled on land at White Horse Plain on the Assiniboine River and founded the Métis village of Grantown.  By the 1840s, his influence with the Métis waned.  French Métis under the elder Louis Riel took leadership away from Grant’s Scots Métis.   He died from injuries suffered when he fell from his horse.

Source:  George Woodcock, “Grant, Cuthbert,” Dictionary of Canadian Biography, 1985.  Retrieved 7/6/2019, http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio.php?BioId=38064
Sketch:  Author unknown.  Date, likely 19th century.   Likely 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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