The Grand Council of the Crees

Publication of a major work on the history of Eeyou Istchee

Posted: 2015-02-17

NEMASKA, EEYOU ISTCHEE, QC, Feb. 17, 2015 /CNW Telbec/ - The Cree Nation Government (CNG) announces the publication of CE QUE LA RIVIÈRE NOUS PROCURAIT: Archéologie et histoire du réservoir de l'Eastmain-1 (What the River Provided: Archaeology and History of the Eastmain 1 Reservoir), a major work on the history of Eeyou Istchee and of the Cree people.

In 2006 the Eastmain-1 hydroelectric project created a reservoir of 603 square kilometres in the Eeyou Istchee James Bay territory. From 2002 to 2005, archaeological research was undertaken by the Société d'énergie de la Baie James (SEBJ) and the Archaeology and Cultural Heritage Program (ACHP) in the areas that would be flooded. Funded by Niskamoon Corporation through the Nadoshtin Agreement (part of the Agreement Respecting a New Relationship Between the Cree Nation and the Government of Quebec) the ACHP allowed the Cree Nation to work with elders, historians and archaeologists to create an archive of the Cree heritage that would be affected by the Eastmain-1 project.

A number of educational products aimed at a Cree audience (films, a book, a commemorative monument and a travelling exhibition) have already been produced. Now, for the first time, a major scientific compilation of the archaeological, geographic and historical research is launched. Edited by Pierre Bibeau, David Denton and André Burroughs, CE QUE LA RIVIÈRE NOUS PROCURAIT contains 18 chapters (three in English and the remainder in French) by archaeologists, geographers and historians relating to the occupation of Eeyou Istchee over the last 5,000 years. The input and spirit of the Cree elders is present throughout the volume. Beyond archaeologists and members of Cree Nation, the book should appeal to those interested in First Nations' history and those grappling with issues of large-scale resource development and heritage preservation.

CE QUE LA RIVIÈRE NOUS PROCURAIT is jointly published by the Canadian Museum of History as part of its Mercury Series and the University of Ottawa Press.ère-nous-procurait.