Treaty 10 Commission

Overview

By order of the Governor-in-Council, James A.J. McKenna was named as the Commissioner to deal with Métis claims in the region which was to be ceded to the Crown with the signing of Treaty 10. The treaty area was defined as the region "...situated partly in the Province of Saskatchewan and partly in the Province of Alberta, and lying to the east of Treaty 8, and to the north of Treaties 5 and 6, and the addition to Treaty 6, ...approximately an area of 85,500 square miles..." (P.C. 1459, 20 July, 1906).

The Métis claims were to be extinguished in the same manner, and under the same terms and conditions, as were the claims of the Athabasca Métis of Treaty 8 in 1899. In other words, all Métis residents in the newly ceded area were to receive scrip for $240, or at the option of the claimant, scrip for 240 acres. In both cases, the scrip could only be redeemable at its face value in the acquisition of Dominion Lands, and for that matter, only those lands which were open for homestead entry. Of course, the scrip would only be awarded if the claimant had not already relinquished his/her aboriginal title in a previous settlement. A child's claim would be considered extinguished if both parents had already received scrip, but not if only one parent had received a settlement (P.C. 1459, 20 July, 1906, paragraph 2b).

In keeping with the precedent set by the Treaty 8 Commission (Order-in-Council P.C. 918, 6 May, 1899), Métis residents of the Treaty 10 territory who were born, between 15 July, 1870, and the end of the year 1885, in any ceded region of the North-West Territories outside the old boundaries of Manitoba, would also be eligible for scrip, providing they had not already received a settlement (P.C. 1459, 20 July, 1906, paragraph 2c).

Commissioner McKenna collected testimonies from 541 claimants. These were indexed by McKenna in two registers: in RG 15, volume 1537, and RG 15, volume 1515. Despite his best efforts, however, some Métis residents, especially those located in the northern and eastern fringes of the treaty area, were unable to reach the Commission's sittings. Accordingly, Thomas Borthwick, an Indian agent at Mistawasis, was appointed a Commissioner "...to take the adhesions to Treaty 10 of such Indians as were not met by the Commissioner who negotiated that Treaty last year, and to investigate, in accordance with instructions to be given him, such claims for halfbreed scrip as may be preferred before him, and report upon such claims to the Minister of the Interior..." (Order-in-Council, 6th April, 1907). The claims collected by Borthwick were entered into a single register which is now retained by Library and Archives Canada as RG 15, volume 1516. A further Order-in-Council authorized the Minister of the Interior to deal with the 202 claims collected by Borthwick "...on the same basis as similar claims were dealt with, and under Paragraph 'F' of Clause 6 of the Dominion Lands Act (Chap. 55, Revised Statutes of Canada, 1906) to issue scrip to such claimants as may be found entitled thereto" (P.C. 326, 15 February, 1908). A further 17 claims by Métis of the Treaty 10 area - and some adjoining regions, as well - were accepted by W.J. McLean while paying annuities at Lac la Ronge and Pelican Narrows the following year in 1908.

Dates

6 September, 1906, to 26 September, 1906

Authorities

Orders-in-Council: P.C. 1459, 20 July, 1906; P.C. 1497, 20 July, 1906; O.C. 6 April, 1907; P.C. 326, 15 February, 1908; P.C. 883, 27 April, 1909.

Members

James A.J. McKenna (P.C. 1459, 20 July, 1906); Thomas. A. Borthwick (O.C., 6 April, 1907).

Reports

Working reports and final reports by McKenna and Borthwick are on RG 15, Series D II 1, vol. 991, file 1247280, title: "J.A.J. McKenna, Commissioner to make treaty with Indians [1906-1914]"; McLean's brief report on his scrip taking activities can be found in RG 15, Series D II 1, vol. 1007, file 1457869, title: "W.J. McLean re. taking affidavits for Half-Breed scrip [1908-1914]".

Sittings

Under P.C. 1497, 20 July, 1906: Portage la Loche, La Loche Mission, La Loche River, and Isle à la Crosse. Under O.C. 6 April, 1907: Isle à la Crosse, Portage La Loche, Stanley, Lac du Brochet Post, Lac du Broche (south), Lac la Ronge, and Mistawasis.

Awards

Under P.C. 1497, 20 July, 1906: a total of 541 claims were investigated, of which 498 were allowed; $65,040 in money scrip and 54,480 acres in land scrip were awarded.

Under O.C. 6 April, 1907: a total of 202 claims were investigated, of which 178 were allowed; $14,160 in money scrip and 28,560 acres in land scrip were awarded.

Applications

Dept. of the Interior, RG 15, Series D II 8c, Applications, 1886-1906, 8.85 m, vols. 1333 to 1371; microfilm reels C-14943 to C-15010.

This series contains applications for scrip made by Métis residents of the North-West Territories. The records date from 1886 to 1906 and were received by all the Commissions post-dating the North-West Commission of 1885, except the Treaty 11 (Mackenzie River District) Commission. Each application gives the name of the applicant, his/her residence, place and date of birth, name of parents and origins, martial status, etc. The applications are filed alphabetically by name of the applicant. Finding aid FA15-21, parts 1 to 15, is an alphabetical index to these records. It is also available on microfilm reel C-14943. An electronic copy of this finding aid is also available elsewhere in Archives Search.

If researchers can not find a particular application in this series, they should probably investigate the central registry series of the Dominion Lands Branch, RG 15, series D II 1 (described elsewhere). It is always possible that the application was withdrawn by departmental administrators and placed in a separate case file. This procedure appears to have been a common practice whenever an application required special consideration by the department. By creating a separate case file on a particular scrip application, the department could keep all its correspondence concerning the application together in a single location.
For a complete listing of all the scrip applications collected under Order-in-Council, P.C. 1459, 20 July, 1906, researchers should refer to the claims registers, i.e., RG 15, volumes 1515 or 1537 and volume 1516 (all of which are described elsewhere).

Scrip Certificates

Dept. of the Interior, RG 15, Series D II 8e, Certificates for Scrip, 1885-1906, 3.15 m, vols. 1373 to 1386.

Scrip certificates numbered G1 to G279 and H1 to H235 were issued by Commissioner J.A. McKenna to Métis claimants who were entitled to partake in the distribution of scrip. McKenna's Commission appears to have been the last which used this type of document. After his initial tour through the Treaty 10 region, scrip certificates were not issued in the second and third years of the Commission. Both Borthwick and McLean simply collected applications from Métis claimants and passed them to Departmental officials in Ottawa.
 
The certificates give the place and date of issue, name of the recipient, the amount and nature of the scrip, and the name of the Commissioner. The records are organized by the certificate registration number. Finding aid FA15-23 serves as a general index to these records. It is organized by registration number and gives the RG 15 volume number where the original document is now retained. Unfortunately, it does not identify individuals to whom the certificates were issued.
 
To find the certificate which was issued to a particular claimant under the Treaty 10 Commission, researchers have two choices. They can consult either finding aid FA15-21, parts 1-15, or the delivery register (RG 15, volume 1520, described elsewhere). Finding aid 15-21 was originally intended to provide access to individual applications in RG 15, series D II 8c (see elsewhere), but it also summarizes the information available on each application form, including the registration number of the scrip certificate issued by the Commission. The delivery register also provides a complete summary on an individual's application, including the registration number.
 
If the certificate can not be found in this series, it is always possible that a copy can be found in the applicant's case file, providing such was created by departmental officials. The case files were placed in the central registry of the Dominion Lands Branch, which is now retained by Library and Archives Canada in RG 15, series D II 1 (described elsewhere). To find the case file number, researchers should either refer to the Commission's alphabetical register (RG 15, volumes 1515 or 1516, described elsewhere) or to the delivery register (RG 15, volume 1520, described elsewhere).

Money Scrip

Dept. of the Interior, RG 15, Series D II 8f, Money Scrip to Métis, 1876-1927, 3.0 m, vols. 1387 to 1403.

This series contains all the cancelled notes for money scrip awarded by the Department of the Interior to Métis claimants of the Province of Manitoba and the North-West Territories. The notes issued by the Treaty 10 Commission are not identified in this series as a separate block of records, but instead are inter-filed with the notes awarded by all the Métis scrip commissions. All claimants for money scrip under Treaty 10 were awarded $240. The scrip was delivered as one $80 note and one $160 note. The recipients of money scrip awarded by J.A. McKenna are listed in volumes 1537 and 1516, and those awarded by Borthwick in volume 1516. The scrip notes are retained by Library and Archives Canada in their numerical order. All the recipients of $80 scrip under Treaty 10 are listed in finding aid FA15-24, parts 19 to 22; and of $160 scrip in finding aid FA15-24, parts 23 to 25. To find the note awarded to a particular claimant when the number of the scrip note is unknown, researchers should first refer to the delivery register (RG 15, volume 1520, described elsewhere) to obtain the scrip note number, and then to the appropriate parts of finding aid FA15-24 to find the RG 15 volume number where the note is stored.

Land Scrip

Dept. of the Interior, RG 15, Series D II 8i, Land Scrip to Métis, 1885-1917, 1.1 m, vol. 1406 to 1410.

This series contains all the cancelled notes for land scrip awarded by the Department of the Interior to Métis claimants of the North-West Territories. The notes issued by the Treaty 10 Commission are not identified in this series as a separate block of records, but instead are inter-filed with the notes awarded by all the North-West scrip commissions. All claimants for land scrip under Treaty 10 were awarded 240 acres which was usually taken it as one 80 acre note and one 160 acre note. The recipients of land scrip awarded by McKenna are listed in volume 1537 and 1516, and those awarded by Borthwick in volume 1516.
 
The land scrip notes retained by Library and Archives Canada are grouped according to the amount of the scrip (either 80 acres or 160 acres), and in numerical order within each group. Finding aid FA15-13 will guide researchers to the RG 15 volume number where the original note is stored; but to use this finding aid researchers must know the scrip number. To find the note awarded to a particular claimant when the number of the scrip note is unknown, researchers should first refer to the delivery register (RG 15, volume 1520, described elsewhere) to obtain the scrip note number, and then to finding aid FA15-13 to find the RG 15 volume number where the note is stored.

Receipts

Dept. of the Interior, RG 15, Series D II 8j, Receipts for Métis Scrip, 1885-1906, 2.25 m, vols. 1411 to 1420.

Pre-printed receipts were distributed by the Department of the Interior along with money and land scrip. The receipts were issued to the Minister of the Department and were to be signed by scrip recipients when the notes were delivered into their custody. Since scrip was only first issued under the Manitoba Supplementary Commission (P.C. 810, 20 April, 1885), these records date from June 1885. They are part of the documentation pertaining to all the Commissions which followed the Manitoba Supplementary Commission, except the last - the Treaty 11 Commission - which made cash settlements only. Each receipt carries a unique number ranging from 1 to 15,700. The records are maintained by Library and Archives Canada in their numerical order. Finding aid FA15-26, parts 1 to 16, provides access to the records. Under each receipt number, it gives the volume number within the RG 15 record group; the name of the recipient; the recipient's application status (heir, child, etc.); the land or money scrip number; the amount of the receipt (in dollars or acres); the date of issue; and sometimes the scrip certificate number and the case file number.
 
In instances when the receipt number is unknown and only the claimant's name is available, researchers should first consult the delivery registers (RG 15, series D II 8m, volume 1520, see description elsewhere). The delivery registers are an alphabetical index to all the recipients of scrip. Among other things, they will give the number of the receipt signed by each claimant. Researchers can then use this number to find the entry for the receipt in finding aid FA15-26. The finding aid will give researchers an indication as to which volume in Record Group 15 should be ordered if they wish to obtain access to the original document.

Subject Files

Dept. of the Interior, RG 15, Series D II 1, Dominion Lands Branch, Correspondence, Headquarters, 1871-1946, 213.6 m, vols. 227 to 1176; Microfilm reels T-12176 to T-15542.

A numerically arranged series of subject files created by the Dominion Lands Branch. The series touches on all aspects of land management and natural resource administration by the Department of the Interior, including Métis land claims. The records included in this series contain general correspondence and departmental memoranda relating to rulings, policy, and procedures, which governed the operations of all the Métis Commissions. It also contains case files relating to the awards given to individual Métis families. The files in this series are numbered sequentially from 1 to 5,644,152 and are listed, in numerical order, in finding aid FA15-5. Under each file number, the finding aid gives the volume number, file title, date range, and subject headings. The majority of the Treaty 10 Commission case files, retained in this series are available in Archives Search under the name of the claimant. A copy of the finding aid is also available in in Archives Search.

Registers/Indexes

Dept. of the Interior, RG 15, Series D II 8m, North-West Half-Breeds and Original White Settlers, Registers and Indexes, 1877-1927, 4.5 m, vols. 1475 to 1555; microfilm reels C-11872 to C-11885.
[Index to Treaty 10 Scrip Claimants who appeared before Commissioner A.J. McKenna]

An alphabetical index organized according to the communities visited by the Commission. Each entry records the claimant's name; date of birth; place of birth; the names of the claimant's parents; his/her application number; the amount awarded in money scrip or land scrip; and general remarks. The latter sometimes provides a brief comment as to why scrip may have been disallowed to a particular claimant. This index as well as that described elsewhere (volume 1515) were probably compiled by McKenna since the claimants entered in both registers are essentially identical. On the other hand, volume 1516, which is also described elsewhere, was probably compiled by Borthwick. Although Borthwick visited some of the same communities as McKenna, the claimants list in volume 1516 differ from those entered in volumes 1515 and 1537. The title page of volume 1516 indicates that applications taken by McKenna were numbered 1 to 247, while those taken by Borthwick began at number 248. Researchers can obtain a listing of all Métis claimants under Treaty 10 (P.C. 1459, 20 July, 1906) by combining the names in volumes 1515 or 1537 with those in volume 1516.
 
RG 15, vol. 1537, Aperture Card Book 120, reel C-11882
 

[Alphabetical] Index to North-West Half-Breed Claims Authorized by chap. 54, sec. 90, par. F., R., S., C., as amended by sec. 4, 62, 63, Vict., chap. 16 (1899), and Order-in-Council of the 2nd March, 1900 [and Subsequent Orders]

A second alphabetical index organized similar to volume 1537 (described elsewhere). This copy of the index, however, also notes the date on which scrip was issued by the department and the claimant's case file number, if such was created by the department in its administration of a claim. The case files noted in this index are now retained by Library and Archives Canada in RG 15, series D II 1 (see description elsewhere).
Information concerning the department's decisions or actions on a particular claim, which is generally provided in the remarks column of both registers sometimes complements one another. In other words, it is not always an exact duplicate. However, all the claimants listed in volume 1515 would appear to be essentially the same as those listed in volume 1537 (described elsewhere).

RG 15, vol. 1515, Aperture Card Book 98, reel C-11879
 

[Alphabetical] Index to North-West Half-Breed Claims Authorized by chap. 54, sec. 90, par. F., R., S., C., as amended by sec. 4, 62, 63, Vict., chap. 16 (1899), and Order-in-Council of the 2nd March, 1900 [and Subsequent Orders]

A third alphabetical index of Métis claimants under Treaty 10 and Treaty 5. The Treaty 10 claim numbers begin at application number 248 and were probably compiled by Borthwick in 1907. The index also contains claims taken by Semmens in 1908, 1909, and 1910 as part of the adhesion of Northern Manitoba to Treaty 5. The Semmens claims were collected under entirely separate authorities (Orders-in-Council P.C. 1114, 12 May, 1908; P.C. 1060, 29 May, 1909; and P.C. 1193, 24 May, 1911). Both the Borthwick and Semmens entries are clearly marked, making it possible for researchers to separate the two. In both cases, the entries are organized alphabetically by the claimant's name, with each entry recording his/her date of birth, his/her place of residence, his/her parents' names, the case file number (if such was created), and a summary statement by the department as to whether or not the claim was allowed.

RG 15, vol. 1516, Aperture Card Book 99, reel C-11879
 

Register of Delivery of Manitoba and North-West Territory Scrip, Orders in Council of 30th March and 20th April, 1885 [and Subsequent Orders]

These registers document the delivery of scrip to claimants filing under the Manitoba Supplementary Commission, the North-West Half-Breed Commissions, the Alberta-Saskatchewan Commissions, and the Treaty 8, 10, and 5 Commissions, including all their adhesions. The registers are organized alphabetically according to the last name of the claimant. Each entry records the scrip number; the name and address of the person or agent to whom the scrip was issued; the date of scrip delivery; a brief description as to the authority (i.e., the Commission) under which the scrip was awarded; the amount and type of scrip issued; the application number (if applicable); the number and date of the receipt; the case file reference number; the certificate number; and a column for general remarks by departmental administrators. The registers are excellent sources for researchers to find documentation on a claimant's complete scrip record. They provide an alphabetical index to many of the records in RG 15 which have been filed under a numerical system. For example, the scrip certificates, scrip notes and scrip receipts are filed in RG 15 by the document number. The finding aids for these records either do not exist or consist of file lists organized under the numerical system. It can be a very tedious task to find such documents when the number is unknown. The registers described here will provide researchers with these numbers when only the claimant's name is known.

For deliveries made under the Treaty 10 Commission see RG 15, vol. 1520, Aperture Card Book 103, reel C-11880
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